What spirit are you of?

What spirit are you of?

Acts 9:1 (NIV) Meanwhile, Saul was still breathing out murderous threats against the Lord’s disciples. He went to the high priest
Acts 9:2 (NIV) and asked him for letters to the synagogues in Damascus, so that if he found any there who belonged to the Way, whether men or women, he might take them as prisoners to Jerusalem.
Acts 9:3 (NIV) As he neared Damascus on his journey, suddenly a light from heaven flashed around him.
Acts 9:4 (NIV) He fell to the ground and heard a voice say to him, “Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?”
Acts 9:5 (NIV) “Who are you, Lord?” Saul asked. “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting,” he replied.
Acts 9:6 (NIV) “Now get up and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do.”
Acts 9:7 (NIV) The men traveling with Saul stood there speechless; they heard the sound but did not see anyone.
Acts 9:8 (NIV) Saul got up from the ground, but when he opened his eyes he could see nothing. So they led him by the hand into Damascus.
Acts 9:9 (NIV) For three days he was blind, and did not eat or drink anything.

The Lord dropped this passage into my heart this morning as I was praying. There was some insight He gave me at the same time.
Saul, later was know as Paul, was a man full of zeal. He thought he was doing what was a good thing by “breathing out murderous threats” against the Lord’s disciples. But Jesus showed him something entirely different. Paul didn’t realize what spirit he was actually operating under. He wasn’t the first one to have to be told this by Jesus. Notice what Jesus did in the following verses.

Luke 9:53 (NKJV) But they did not receive Him, because His face was set for the journey to Jerusalem.
Luke 9:54 (NKJV) And when His disciples James and John saw this, they said, “Lord, do You want us to command fire to come down from heaven and consume them, just as Elijah did?”
Luke 9:55 (NKJV) But He turned and rebuked them, and said, “You do not know what manner of spirit you are of.
Luke 9:56 (NKJV) “For the Son of Man did not come to destroy men’s lives but to save them.” And they went to another village.

Verse 55 sums up how Jesus wants us to respond in each circumstance we encounter. He rebuked the disciples by telling them they didn’t know what manner of spirit they were of. In other words, it wasn’t the same Spirit that He is of. Paul was under that same kind of spirit the disciples were under. They thought they were doing a good thing, but it wasn’t God’s way. It looked good, and in the case of the disciples, what they proposed was righting something that was wrong. But Jesus told them that was not the right spirit. In Paul’s case, he was going against a group of people who weren’t doing anything wrong. Jesus told Him he was wrong and told him He would show him what He wanted him to do. As a result, rather than breathing out murderous threats, he became one of the most influential people in history, writing 2/3 of the New Testament and teaching us the beautiful message of grace in those same writings.
The most important question we can ask ourselves before we do anything in life is, what spirit am I operating under if I do this thing? Love is the only spirit we must operate in if we want to be on God’s side.
This is what love does:
Proverbs 10:12 (NLT) Hatred stirs up quarrels, but love covers all offenses.

1 Peter 4:8 (NLT) Most important of all, continue to show deep love for each other, for love covers a multitude of sins. 


You are not an orphan

You are not an orphan

Romans 8:14 For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God. 15 The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.”

There is something that every single human being longs for. We all long to know our identity. We long to know who we really are, and why we were created.
I learned some really interesting things that I hadn’t ever understood before.
Luke 3:38 (NIV) the son of Enosh, the son of Seth, the son of Adam, the son of God.

Adam was a son of God. That could not be said, nor was it said about any of his offspring. The reason. Because after he sinned he became an orphan. He was separated from his Father. His sin wasn’t because of deception. Eve was deceived but Adam never was. He was willfully disobedient. It wasn’t about eating a piece of fruit. All the fruit of all the trees, including the *tree of life* he could have all he wanted anytime. He betrayed his Father. He wanted to be god for himself. Because of that, he spread the curse of sin and death to all his offspring.
Recently I saw a video that showed an experiment that some researchers did where they cracked open a chicken egg after it had been fertilized to see how the chick formed. They carefully put it in a plastic cup, with some plastic wrap and put it in the incubator. They thought the yoke would turn into the chick, but to their surprise it was the sperm that started to grown into chick. What they learned is what shows how important that seed that comes from the male is. It truly IS what forms the child.

When Jesus was sent to save mankind, that is exactly what He was doing !! He was SAVING mankind from the curse of sin and death. Notice what He said to Nicodemus.

John 3:5 (NIV) Jesus answered, “I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit.
John 3:6 (NIV) Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit.

Did you catch that? Flesh (Adam) gives birth to flesh(sin nature). But the Spirit gives birth to spirit.
When you are born again, your spirit comes alive, and that spirit is what is eternal, and will inherit an incorruptible body that will never die.
1 Corinthians 15:22 (NIV) For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive.

1 Corinthians 15:42 (NIV) So will it be with the resurrection of the dead. The body that is sown is perishable, it is raised imperishable;
1 Corinthians 15:43 (NIV) it is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory; it is sown in weakness, it is raised in power;
1 Corinthians 15:44 (NIV) it is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body. If there is a natural body, there is also a spiritual body.
1 Corinthians 15:45 (NIV) So it is written: “The first man Adam became a living being” ; the last Adam, a life-giving spirit.

The spirit body is INCORRUPTIBLE. It doesn’t get old, sick or die. It might be sown in dishonor (through the sin of Adam) but it is raised in glory. It might be perishable, but it is raised imperishable. Sown in weakness, raised in power.
Jesus was born of a woman, but His Father was God, not Adam. Therefore He didn’t inherit the sin nature. He reconciled us back to our Father. Now we could be adopted into the family of God with all the rights and privileges that come from being in this family. And this was the ONE NEW MAN that Paul talked about.

Ephesians 2:13 (NIV) But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near through the blood of Christ.
Ephesians 2:14 (NIV) For he himself is our peace, who has made the two one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility,
Ephesians 2:15 (NIV) by abolishing in his flesh the law with its commandments and regulations. His purpose was to create in himself one new man out of the two, thus making peace,
Ephesians 2:16 (NIV) and in this one body to reconcile both of them to God through the cross, by which he put to death their hostility.
Ephesians 2:19 (NIV) Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and aliens, but fellow citizens with God’s people and members of God’s household.

Since we have the spirit of God living in us, we are no longer slaves to fear, the spirit of God has brought about our adoption as the children of God. Now our genealogy could read ________ (fill in your name), son/daughter of God. Does this make more sense to you now?

Be a Prisoner of Hope

Be a Prisoner of Hope

Zechariah 9: 11 As for you, because of the blood of my covenant with you, I will free your prisoners from the waterless pit.
12 Return to your fortress, you prisoners of hope; even now I announce that I will restore twice as much to you. (NIV)

Instead of being a prisoner of hopelessness, Father God has made you a “prisoner of hope”, freed from a waterless pit.
Does this sound inviting based on your current situation? Does your life seem like a waterless pit? Dry and devoid of hope? You try to get up and you just seem to go deeper. You want to hope for something better, but it seems to elude you.
Did you notice what the first part of verse 11 said? “As for you, because of my blood covenant with you”, this is the method for freedom from the pit.
I learned something earlier today that I didn’t know, but it was a wow moment which ties right in with this topic Father God put on my heart to write.
Revelation 2:17 (NLT) “Anyone who is willing to hear should listen to the Spirit and understand what the Spirit is saying to the churches. Everyone who is victorious will eat of the manna that has been hidden away in heaven. And I will give to each one a white stone, and on the stone will be engraved a new name that no one knows except the one who receives it.

Back in Biblical times in a court of law, stones were given based on the verdict. A black stone meant you were guilty, but a white stone meant you were innocent. Do you see what Father God is showing you here?
His blood covenant results in you getting the white stone. Because of this blood covenant, you become a prisoner of hope instead of hopelessness. All the victory in your life stems from this. No greater love was shown than that the Son of the Most High God would lay down His life for you and me. But you have to return to the “fortress”. Once there, He restores DOUBLE what the enemy has stolen from you.
What has the enemy stolen from you? Your health, your peace, your marriage, your children your finances? What has he stolen? Whatever it is, Father God promises to give you double what was taken from you, if you return to the fortress.
That old hymn of the church which says “A Mighty Fortress is our God, a Bulwark NEVER FAILING” describes Him perfectly. He is bigger than your enemy. He is bigger than your solutions to your problems. His solutions NEVER FAIL. Now that is shouting ground !!



“Don’t let life just happen *to* you, let life happen *through* you.” “Be a clear pipeline.” This quote came from a woman who received this word from the Lord as she was going through a time of inner healing from anxiety, agoraphobia, and worry. She went on to be a staff writer for Our Daily Bread and wrote many devotionals that helped countless people while she lived a full and enriching life. Her prayer when she was in the middle of her turmoil was “Lord help me to heal in such a way that I can help others going through this as well.” She reasoned that there had to be many other people struggling just like she was. What she learned is how to live the God-dependent life. She and her husband ministered to countless people and opened a home for people dealing with substance abuse to heal and be made whole. She understood the prison they lived in because she lived it in a different sort of way. Anxiety is just as big a prison as addiction is, and both have the same way of deliverance.

Psalms 103:2 Bless and affectionately praise the Lord, O my soul,
And do not forget any of His benefits;
3 Who forgives all your sins,Who heals all your diseases;
4 Who redeems your life from the pit, Who crowns you [lavishly] with loving kindness and tender mercy;
5 Who satisfies your years with good things, So that your youth is renewed like the [soaring] eagle. (AMP)

It is interesting when you think about it that addiction happens as a result of people trying to cover up inner pain, and anxiety comes from the same thing, trying to stifle pain.
How wonderful that the God-dependent life comes by way of His deliverance. He *redeems* your life from that pit, satisfies your life with good things, so that your youth is renewed like a soaring eagle. He teaches you how to let life happen *through* you, instead of spending your energy trying to fight off all the tensions and trials that assail you daily. You don’t have to just let life happen *to* you. Paul said it this way.
Romans 12: 21 Do not be overcome and conquered by evil, but overcome evil with good. (AMP)
The God-dependent life says, God will show me the way to walk through this situation and make me a victor. He will fight for me, and give me favor. I will make it, because He promises that I am more than a conqueror and have the assurance of victory because of Jesus. A tall promise by a powerful God Who will most assuredly deliver what He promised. And if this isn’t enough to encourage the socks off of anyone who is stuck in a pit like situation, I don’t know what is !!

The Mustard Seed

The Mustard Seed

Luke 17:6 (NIV) He replied, “If you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it will obey you.

Do you ever think about your faith in terms of it’s size? Do you ever have times when you think your faith isn’t big enough to overcome that mountainous obstacle in front of you? Well if not I will write this for myself, because I certainly have those times. I know for sure and for certain I haven’t arrived. But interestingly as I was talking to the Lord about it, He reminded me of the scripture text above. He said “you only have to have faith as big as a tiny little mustard seed, and it will be enough, because when a mustard seed is *planted* it grows into a great BIG TREE.”

That conversation blessed the socks right off of me, and I hope it will for you as well, because we all have those times and seasons where we wonder how much faith it will take to see our breakthrough. Maybe that describes your situation as well. If it does, let me encourage you to think of a mustard seed. A teeny tiny mustard seed of faith is all it takes for breakthrough and you and I have that already. Here is how I know this.

Romans 12:3 (NASB) For through the grace given to me I say to every man among you not to think more highly of himself than he ought to think; but to think so as to have sound judgment, as God has allotted to each a measure of faith.

Father God has given each of us a measure of faith. So we all have it, and it is enough to move mountains. You don’t have to think more highly of your own faith and how much or how little of it you have in order to see your mountain move. You only need to know how powerful your God is, and that doesn’t take huge faith. Jesus said it best this way:
Mark 11:22 (NIV) “Have faith in God,” Jesus answered.
Mark 11:23 (NIV) “I tell you the truth, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart but believes that what he says will happen, it will be done for him.
Mark 11:24 (NIV) Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.

“Have faith in God” because “His invisible qualities are evident” all you need is a mustard seed size for that.

He calls us friend

He calls us friend

John 15: 15 I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. (NIV)

James 2:23 (NNAS) and the Scripture was fulfilled which says, “AND ABRAHAM BELIEVED GOD, AND IT WAS RECKONED TO HIM AS RIGHTEOUSNESS,” and he was called the friend of God.

Did you ever think about the fact that God wants to be your Friend? I heard the best analogy concerning this fact.
Imagine if you will, that a friend you know is in the hospital and you go to visit them. You don’t talk to them, you just hand them a book you have written and without a word you walk away.
This is what some doctrines teach about God. They say that He stopped speaking when the Bible was completed, and now only talks to people through His Book. When you put it like that it sounds pretty crazy doesn’t it? Who do you know that carries on a friendship like that? Wouldn’t do much for the friendship would it? Father God wants to have a friendship with you. You can’t have a friendship without conversation.  Why would Jesus say “My sheep know my *voice* if He never talked to us? How would we know His voice?
John 10:27 (NIV) My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.
He has relationship with the *sheep* (us) and knows us because there is conversation.

He gave us the Holy Spirit to live with us. Is the Holy Spirit mute? How then does He teach us all things if He never talks? How will He comfort and encourage us if He doesn’t talk?
It’s crazy how some people will think you are off your rocker if you say that you hear from God. “You mean God actually talks to you?” YES !! He does!! And He wants to talk with all of us. Sometimes there are so many distractions in people’s lives that they don’t get quiet enough to hear Him.

John 16:13 (NIV) But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come.

He says the Holy Spirit will *SPEAK* and He will *TELL* you what is yet to come. Speaking and telling are verbal. smile emoticon
Quiet your heart and let Him converse with you. He wants to build a deep relationship with you, not some churchy do your 45 and out kind of religion. He calls you *FRIEND*. The God of all creation calls us friend. Wow !! heart emoticon

Thy Kingdom Come

Thy Kingdom Come

I heard something today that made so much sense. It has to do with the Lord’s prayer and Psalms 23. Did you realized that both start and end with the same things? Both say that Father God *IS*. Very much like the Shema found in Deuteronomy 6:4 which says: “Hear, O Israel! The Lord *is* our God, the Lord *is* one.”
And both end with eternity.
Matthew 6: 13(b) [For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory *forever*. Amen.]’
Psalms 23: 6(b) And I shall dwell *forever* [throughout all my days] in the house and in the presence of the Lord.

But here is the really amazing insight that is brought out in the Lord’s prayer. Check this out !!
Matthew 6:10 (KJV) Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.
Contrast that with this:
Matthew 6:10 (NIV) your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

Did you notice that the KJV says *IN* earth, and the NIV says *ON* earth?
That is an important thing because they mean something entirely different. When you think of something being *on* earth as in this case the kingdom of God as we normally think of it, which is a government that rules over the earth.
But consider what Jesus said about where the kingdom of God is.
Luke 17:21 (KJV) Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.

We were made out of the earth. So when He says “Thy will be done *in* earth” He is talking about *US*. His will is being done *in* us because He put His law in our minds and hearts, His kingdom reign is happening in our minds and hearts right now. That is what governs our actions. We have the joy of living in the kingdom of God right now and that joy will continue for eternity.
The following scripture describes what the kingdom is.

Romans 14:17 (KJV) For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.

What a stark contrast to the kingdoms of this world !! One day soon, Jesus will be coming back to bring this rule over all the earth’s inhabitants. Imagine a world filled with righteousness, peace and joy. To enjoy that kingdom it requires one thing and that is to acknowledge that you have Jesus as your King and Savior. If He is your King, then you are part of His kingdom. You get His righteousness imputed to you, His peace and His joy given to you. so much better than any government man has contrived. Could you use a constant stream of peace and joy in your life? Jesus is the Way !! heart emoticon