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Psalm 8 The Passion Translation (TPT)

God’s Splendor

For the Pure and Shining One

Set to the melody of “For the Feast of Harvest,”[a] by King David

Lord, your name is so great and powerful!

People everywhere see your splendor.

Your glorious majesty streams from the heavens,

filling the earth with the fame of your name!

You have built a stronghold by the songs of babies.

Strength rises up with the chorus of singing children.

This kind of praise has the power to shut Satan’s mouth.

Childlike worship will silence[b]

the madness of those who oppose you.

Look at the splendor of your skies,

your creative genius glowing in the heavens.

When I gaze at your moon and your stars,

mounted like jewels in their settings,

I know you are the fascinating artist who fashioned it all!

But when I look up and see

such wonder and workmanship above,

I have to ask you this question:

Compared to all this cosmic glory,[c]

why would you bother with puny, mortal man

or be infatuated with Adam’s sons?

Yet what honor you have given to men,

created only a little lower than Elohim,[d]

crowned like kings and queens[e] with glory and magnificence.

You have delegated to them

mastery over all you have made,

making everything subservient to their authority,

placing earth itself under the feet of your image-bearers.[f]

7–8 

All the created order and every living thing

of the earth, sky, and sea—

the wildest beasts and all the sea creatures—

everything is in submission to Adam’s sons.

Lord, your name is so great and powerful.

People everywhere see your majesty!

What glory streams from the heavens,

filling the earth with the fame of your name!

Some of you are fearing that you are going around the mountain again. So tempted to put your head down and drag your feet around as you expect to see the same old scenery but the Lord said to me this morning, “You are at the APEX of your new beginning! Pause and look around you! You are standing on the peak! You have overcome! Ask of Me and I will teach you how to rule from this place as it is your DESTINY! Stay with Me beloved on this mountain top so we can share the view!”

He has so much more for us than we think! We are at the peak of it all! No more striving! It’s all downhill from here! What was hard will be easy! What you fought against in the last season you have overcome! It’s time to rest in Him for there’s a life ahead of you to live and many more mountains to conquer!

He’s also been speaking to me recently about child-likeness. How we have forgotten how to be silly, we have left our imaginations by the wayside! He’s calling us to pick it back up! It is the window into the Spirit! He is inviting us to close our eyes and dream again! To return to innocent thinking, star gazing, looking at shapes in the clouds and listening in the stillness. He knows you have been waiting for things and He sees you have been faithful with what He has given you. He’s saying come play on the playground with me, don’t let people who are adult in their thinking run you off of My playground! I built it for You my beloved! And only those with an innocent heart can find their way into My gardens of joy and laughter! Confined hearts on the outside see nothing but a wall, blank canvases, blank paper and empty pens…turned down lips and hearts. But those who sit in MY presence have inspiration enough to fill the libraries on earth to bursting! To fill empty hearts with new wine and empty pens with My words! They will lead empty hearts into My secret play yard where Joy returns like lost childhood toys finding their way back into empty hands. Come join Me where coloring books, helium balloons and abundant giggles all converge, where clown noses squeak and fear doesn’t exist.

It’s an invitation to His heart. We can find what has been lost and stolen, we can reclaim what was once ours. The Lost things are coming back to find us. Things we thought we missed out on are just waiting to be rediscovered and maybe you’ll find that the things you have been looking for…

…were right in front of you all along.

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Restored to Royalty

I’ve been waiting on some things to occur in my life. Some really super amazing things.

But at the same time I’ve been going through some difficult things. The enemy has a way of getting in our head and we allow his lies to wedge in our hearts in our moments of weakness. The last two weeks had been so incredibly hard in many ways and the Lord is always faithful to bring us through but we still have these moments of fear and doubt where we are certain our future is at risk.

And yet His word says He will bring us to an expected end (Jeremiah 29:11). How silly of us to worry when His word has promised us a future of His design.

So, I’m a lover of vintage. I love things that have a history and a story to tell.

Last weekend, as per the norm, I found myself perusing the various thrift stores looking for treasures. I’m redecorating my room in a bit of a Victorian theme and so I was looking for candle holders and silver tea trays for trinkets on my dresser. I found a vintage Avon ring from the 70’s, some beautiful silver tea spoons and a tray and some decorative boxes. $12 later I moved on to the next thrift store. I don’t generally like Savers…they are overpriced. But I wasn’t in a hurry so I wandered around. Finally done (and spending more than I wanted to), I made my way to the jewelry counter.

I look at a few pieces and then I look over at this unusually massive ring with probably a 10 carat sized Amethyst colored stone. I joked with the lady and said, “My goodness, that thing looks like it’s from Wish.com, straight outta China!” She chuckles and I pick up a few more. I for some reason pick up this giant clobber of a ring and look on the inside and see 14k. So my giggling smirk turned serious as I flipped over the tag. $8…

“Um, yeah. I’ll take this,” and walk to go check out. I am laughing all the way to the car and when I sit down I begin to look at this ring. It’s probably going to be the reason for my next black eye but on inspection I begin laughing. Inside the band it says 14k PLAT which is a stamp for Gold as we all know, and Platinum. More valuable than gold. On the inside of the band it reads in script L.W.P 7/25/32.

32.

32?

THIRTY TWO??? OH MY GOSH!

This was someone’s engagement or wedding ring. It’s got minimal wear on the band. It has enamel in the corners and hand made platinum flowers that hold the stone in place. This ring has been well taken care of. I begin researching wedding and engagement rings for the 1930’s and realize they are all silver. The depression began in 1929, and Gold confiscation by the government began in April of 1933. Granted it was gold bullion and coin and certificates, a ring like this would have made the woman wearing it a target on the streets. It was definitely a commission piece and expensive. The man who bought it most certainly loved the woman whose finger it was on as I imagine it lightened his wallet significantly.

Two+ years ago now the Lord gave me three numbers: 66, 88, 111. I knew the 88 was for my new beginning, and the 66 was unity of man. This ring is 86 years old. Well it’s birthday was just this past Wednesday, a mere 4 days after my $8 (new beginnings) purchase.

I honestly have been over the moon over this ring. It’s a monstrous thing fit for a king! Which triggered my dream reflex. I searched for dreams from 7/25/2017:

-Was looking in a pond and found magic, something that restored me to royalty. I kept checking to see if it was real and it was- it wasn’t going away. Saw this three different times in the same way but different places

-kept dreaming about hidden tiaras

And what makes this even more amazing…the cherry on top? The evidence in His word of this promise He has made to me:

2 Samuel 7:25

25 “And now, Lord God, keep forever the promise you have made concerning your servant and his house. Do as you promised,

Yes Lord, do as you promised.

Until then, I praise you for it.

Amanda

The NEW Wineskins

Recently the Lord has been showing me that I have a fear. A fear of releasing His words and instead it being my own words. I have a fear of the backlash I would receive because what He’s been speaking to me isn’t…comfortable. It’s not fluffy and sweet…It’s an exhortation. A correction. It’s funny, correction is something that I struggle with in real life with my children. People say that they are out of hand because I’m not spanking them, when really it’s something else entirely; they aren’t broken and afraid of me. Rather they know they have the freedom to be themselves and learn all while learning (slowly) the right and wrong way to behave.  I’m of the mind that correction isn’t a beating or a yelling or anything like that. The shepherds staff is in the shape of a candy cane. When you “spare the rod, spoil the child” it means when you  fail to use the crook of the staff to draw them in and teach them something in love in those moments where everything is falling apart, you will spoil them because they won’t understand the Fathers love for them. The shepherd never uses his staff to beat his sheep. Otherwise they wouldn’t love him, they would run from him. But he uses the crook to draw them closer and keep them from danger, and the other end to drive off enemies.

Correction in society across many hundreds of years has used this scripture and twisted it terribly to support corporal punishment. Beating our children into submission, causing them to be fearful of us and the pain which we have the power to exert over them, which translates into fearing some wrathful angry God and fearing us as parents, and it breaks the will of the child. Who wants to run to that when they made a mistake or are afraid? Granted, fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, but it is fear of His authority and the things He is VERY capable of doing to teach us His ways. It’s like I tell Jeremiah when I’ve caught him stealing; God’s kids will ALWAYS get caught when they do something wrong. Learn from me here and now before a higher land authority catches you. It may be easier to answer to me, but answering to the Police…not as easy. I also have the authority as a parent to take him to the police should he not learn from me. From a child’s perspective- that’s scary.

So, I submit this correction from the Fathers heart with love.

To my unfaithful church,

Why have you closed your doors and not let Me in? Don’t you know how My heart beats for you? I’ve given you the land, I’ve given you good things and yet I AM not invited into the houses of worship and praise. I AM left out on the porch to listen to the songs that you would sing to Me. So I do not hear them. I will not beg you to let Me in. I’ve been patient and now as it is written:  “For it is time for judgment to begin with God’s household; and if it begins with us, what will the outcome be for those who do not obey the gospel of God?” (1 Peter 4:17)

The Lord says that now is the time that He is cleaning house. He is cleaning out the churches that profess His name but do not allow Him in. He is deposing leadership, making room for the new. Making room for those who are and will remain sensitive to His leading. It is no longer business as usual, buildings will become vacant, and those who really weren’t after my heart will leave and never return.

The Lord is using this to shock some people back to life!! Pastors who once led dead churches will fly in the Spirit like they have never experienced before. They will lose, but OH the heights they will gain! People who once sat in service just doing what they were taught to do will encounter Him like never before. He has saved a place just for them! This is the sifting of the church. The purpose is to weed out those whose hearts don’t and never will respond to His call, and to bring all the Lazarus hearts to life.

This is the call to the dry bones!! The Lord is asking CAN THESE DRY BONES LIVE!!

YES! Yes Lord and they surely will live! They will climb the mountain of the Lord and they will seek His face and be brought into the shelter of His wings! They will sing for him and not have a microphone to sing through, they will play and dance for Him with no one to watch and they won’t care! It’s not a stage they seek, but His heart! This sifting will cause a hole in our society. This is not a light matter. People who are not anointed to do His work will gather the tares and do business as usual.

Not us.

He’s given me a warning to be VERY careful to not take up the ways of old. That once it falls, to not pick it back up again, to not follow it’s mold because we are new wine being poured into New Wineskins, and the old wineskin of the church is no longer good enough. There is a new way, and we need to remain close to His heart in order to hear and be led by Him into this place. Please church, stay prayerful and alert and close to His heart. Lay your head on His chest and listen to His heartbeat for you…and march to it.

Poppa God,

We want and need more of you. There are those in need of awakening and we cry out and declare to them AWAKE! AWAKE! Come alive! There are hearts that have been marked by you and we declare those who have been asleep all this time will rise at the call of Jesus like when he commanded Lazarus to come out. Let new fire run through the veins of your people. Let your fire consume them to walk out the plans of their life that you put in place from before the earth began.  We praise you for everything you are and everything you have done, and we humble ourselves before you. Thank you for loving us, thank you for finding us in the dark of life and breathing your life into us. All to you we owe and surrender. Let Your will be done.

Amen

~Amanda

 

Jeremiah and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

Because I’m on the other side of last week, I can now laugh about the tragedy that was the last week of May, 2018.

It was a rather sunny Tuesday and it was Field Day. A day where the school year was almost over and the kids pretty much spent their day outside. They were expecting the fire truck to come and get them wet at the end of the day and my son was so looking forward to that.  That is…until the fire truck didn’t show up due to an emergency fire. Unforeseen circumstances, no one’s fault at all, but when you are 7 and sensitive spiritually to the emotions of those around you and there’s probably 100+ kids or far more disappointed and upset that the part of their day that they were looking forward to most…wasn’t going to happen. So what do you do when you are emotionally overloaded by those around you??

You run away.

Yep.  Jeremiah ran toward the safest and quietest place he knew.

Home.

Unfortunately for him, he nearly got hit by a car as teachers chased after him through the neighborhood, one of which fell. Then he refused to get on the daycare bus and as I spoke with him on the phone all I could hear was “My whole day was ruined because the firetruck never came.” The logic of a 7 year old. He was truly crushed over it and still was struggling to process his disappointment and the disappointment of every other kid’s emotions he could feel. So I went and picked him up and we went home. I was rather upset, not because he ran, but because he nearly killed himself and his choices got someone else hurt.  I’d decided he was going to do chores the remainder of the night because I couldn’t think of a relevant punishment to fit the offense.

We got home and I pulled out my work computer to finish up my hour and a half left in my day. By the time the day was done, it turned into more like 3.5 hours. It was a good diversion after what happened next.

First chore: The litter box. My son has ADHD and sensory processing (but don’t worry, he’s not broken. The Lord told me He created my children this way for a purpose), and I thank God for my cat because his litter box gets emptied and refilled once a week and he never misses. Despite it being on the chore list 4 times in a week. Anyway. Chore 1 gets completed. Great, onto chore number two. Dishes. Empty and load the dishwasher. Sounds easy enough.

Right…and also wrong. He completes the chore and is trying to be helpful so he puts  soap in it.

But not just any soap.
Dawn dish soap.
And not even in the cup for soap.
He opens up the Jet Dry lid and pours it in there.

By now I’m hearing noises that sound like he’s doing something he shouldn’t be and I look over in horror at what he’s doing. I jumped up and was like NOOOOOOOOOOO WHAT ARE YOU DOING?!

For anyone who has done this…knows sadly that the result is a nonstop bubble machine that leaves you cleaning up water and bubbles for hours. That is, if you catch it. If you aren’t home or not in the room it will leave you about $1000 short when you pay your insurance company your deductible for water damage.  So, I grabbed the turkey baster and did my best, with a beveled edge unfortunately, to suck out the soap from the dishwasher. I gave my son a rag with some soap and told him to “Dear God, get OUT of my kitchen and go wash the walls in the stairwell” and shoo’ed him off. I grabbed a straw from the pantry and did what any thrifty mother would do, who didn’t want to spend $1000 for water damage, and proceeded to suck the soap out of the hole through a straw. Desperate times call for desperate measures, no? Well yes…that is until your child comes down with the medicine syringe and suggests connecting it to the straw so I don’t have to get soap in my mouth. Too little, too late. I dilute it with actual Jet Dry and run a cycle with a handful of dishes in it and vow to pay attention. My son proceeds to wash the walls…or so I thought. I open the 5 day old bottle of red wine in the fridge and pour myself a glass. Soap tastes nasty.

I’m walking back to sit down at my computer. And I hear the sink upstairs running. *insert eye roll*

I painted the kids bedrooms only two and three days prior and discovered that the plumbing under the sink is not fitting right and is leaking. I’ve got towels under there until I can get back to adjust that, but J has the water on full blast so I’m shouting up to him “TURN OFF THE WATER! J, TURN OFF THE WATER! It’s LEAKING! I hear some frantic sounds coming from my child as the water turns off and on. I get back up and proceed to walk up the stairs. I get almost half way up and I see his head peek at me from around the corner and I reexplain that the sink is leaking and to turn it off. And he, in the most panic stricken voice I’ve ever heard from him, said, “I’M GETTING IN THE SHOWER!!” and he runs off down the hall.

With a puzzled look on my face, I walk up three more stairs as the scene before me unfolds. Recall I said I had painted that weekend? Yeah, I didn’t have time to get the paint back in the garage. The day before, Jeremiah attempted to open the small quart sized can (that was still mostly full…like 2/3 full) with a pair of fingernail clippers. I caught it and pounded it closed. Apparently not good enough because it looked like he juggled with an open can of blue paint in my hallway.  on the carpet on the stairs, on the wood flooring, on the cabinet in the bathroom on the walls…in the litter box…I stood there with the soap flavor still in my mouth and screamed. I found out later that he shook the can upside down. I’ve never been the greatest at thinking on my feet quickly. I’m very good at problem solving and thinking outside of the box, but I’ve always needed time to think. I could never come up with a sufficient come back if someone was in my face, nor would I make a good medical professional, but surprisingly I moved pretty quickly. I’m good at remaining calm, but not good at taking fast action. I ran downstairs and found the first flat thing I could see to scoop paint up into; my old license plate. I run upstairs, grab a towel I don’t care about and see the trail of blue to my bedroom. He had it running down his entire body, all over his leg, his stomach and his arm. I did a fair amount of yelling, and I’ve worked very hard with the Lord to not be that mom and He’s has done a thing in me for sure. But this…this I was just so dumbfounded and pissed off that many choice words flew out of my mouth. It took me 30 minutes to clean up the paint. It mostly came out of the carpet and nobody died. He didn’t even get a spanking.

I told him to stay in his room and quickly changed my mind. His dad came over and calmly talked to Jeremiah as I’m over on the other side of the room pacing trying to keep my mouth shut. I’d done enough yelling and was trying to calm down that I realized that his dad was oddly calm…which was good cause I was not.

No more chores…good heavens, please no more chores. Staying in his room wasn’t an option because frankly he was on a roll. Nope. He was going to sit on the couch next to me for the remainder of the night and not move. Or touch anything. So I put on How to Train Your Dragon and that is where we sat for the rest of the night. Around 9pm I decided I was done working, Sophia was passed out on the couch and I realized that I had fully consumed the remainder of that bottle of wine…which was unlike me. I’m not a drinker really, unless I’m hanging out with Kim, mom #2 and we’re cooking together. Then we will share a bottle.

There are days that parenting is downright HARD. Throw in some extra-sensory spiritual stuff from both kids (that you have no idea how to teach them to harness) and some days it’s a perfect storm as was this day. But you know what, at the end of the day I apologized to Jeremiah for how much I yelled at him. I told him that I’m human and I’m okay with being wrong sometimes and that I loved him so much. I’m not proud of how I responded but I can look back on last week and laugh now. It’s just stuff. Yeah stuff costs money but really God is our provider and if we really truly trust in Him as such, then why do we let the little…and seemingly big things get under our skin? Selfishness. It’s our sin nature coming out when we take offense over someone causing us trouble, or a mess. I usually navigate big things like this fairly well, but not this day.

But we bounced back, I still love my child and he loves me.

But I can guarantee you, he won’t ever do either of those things again…

Oh and remember the dishwasher I vowed to pay attention to?

Yeah, it was okay.

 

~Amanda

Going up; Going down

If you’re around my age you might recall a show from your childhood called Mr. Belvedere. This morning and around this time last year I woke up with the song in my head which prompted me to google some lyrics (again):

Streaks on the china,
never mattered before,
who cares.When you dropped kicked your jacket
As you came through the door,
No one glared.But sometimes things get turned around
And no one’s spared.

All hands look out below
There’s a change in the status quo.
Gonna need all the help that we can get.

According to our new arrival
Life is more than mere survival
We just might live the good life yet.

I took it last year to mean that life as we know it is changing before our very eyes. The turn around is here! The New Wine is here! I seem to be on a turnaround time of a year for recent dreams and words that He’s given me. He’s reconfirming things He said a year ago.
This morning He gave me “Real Estate” and “Building Value” and He’s speaking to new things inside of you and how He’s building value inside of ourselves and our lives. He is doubling our return, building our faith and we have to keep holding on to the things He has promised us.  He’s bringing us into our places for those of us who are with Him and in relationship with Him.
However…
There’s a sifting coming to the church.
I’ve been sitting on a dream for a week or so. I woke up grieved again in the Spirit. There’s a division happening right now in the Body of Christ where the Lord is drawing a line of separation between His true Church and the pretenders.
I was on an airplane. There were two of them side by side and they were both a maroon color sitting on the ground in a parking lot with ramps in front of them. Mrs Grieve, my son’s special needs resource teacher was on that plane and I thought it would be good to be over there for my son. As I was on the phone to see about switching planes, both planes took off and I watched out the window as the other plane hit the ramp and one set of tires missed the ramp and it launched into the air at an angle, broke apart and the tail end crashed to the ground, and the part that was holding the people came down after it and landed face down and I didn’t hear anything- no plane crash noises…except I heard and saw the blood splatter. It was the loudest thing I’d heard and I knew that every body on that plane, every person who has suppressed and grieved the Holy Spirit by keeping God’s people from flying higher would be dealt with.
There are a few ways we can grieve the Holy Spirit. Acts 7:51 speaks about resisting the Spirit, 1 Thessalonians 5:19 is about quenching the Spirit and Ephesians 4:30 is about grieving the Spirit. It all means we aren’t allowing Him to lead our services and our lives. Have a predictable church service? Sing 3-4 songs and then you’re on to the message? Is it all pretty well structured, or unpredictable. A Spirit led service is unpredictable and the message you get from it will pierce your heart. Are you encountering God? Being convicted? Being fed milk? Or meat? Does your pastor open his Bible? Does he pause in an effort to listen to the leading of the Spirit? I’ve been in services where the music goes on and on, He’s speaking through people and there are people huddled around others as they cry out…all without human prompting. And I’ve been through services where no one sings but the people on stage.  It also means that we aren’t allowing the Lord to mold us and shape us. We are pushing back on the things we know we need to change rather than surrendering these things to Him and allowing Him to move through us.
This dividing line is meant to do two things; separate the wheat from the chaff and cause those who recognize that the line has been drawn and He’s calling to turn and seek Him. He will restore all who seek His restoration if they find themselves on the wrong side of the plumb line, just like Peter when he denied Jesus 3 times. Sifted and restored.  He’s set a standard and He will lift up men and women to meet that standard in His Body, those who will go out and do great things for Him. This is His way of calling those who have slipped into complacency back to His heart. He has a desire for you, a burning desire and He will use this to chase after you. Because He wants you.
You catch that? He wants you. YOU.
It’s time to rise to the occasion. New beginnings, new wineskins and new wine. It’s all NEW and He wants to shape you and mold you and expand you, stretch your canvas to contain it, move your tent pegs outward so your arms can contain the more He has for you.
Aren’t you hungry for more? Isn’t this life absolutely BORING without Him? He is your greatest adventure. And if He’s not…
…You’re certainly missing out.
Amanda

The Name of Jesus

I stood there, hands raised and I could feel the lifelessness around me. I put my hands down as I asked the Lord a question.

“What’s wrong Lord? Why does it feel like this? Is this me? What am I sensing?”

He said his name has become an idol and many people just use His name like a token or a magic word and are missing out on a relationship with him. They are going through the motions.

Lord what do we do, how do we help them? He gave me:

LOST and then He began speaking directly into my heart:

Many will be too stubborn to step out of the incorrect doctrine, hard hearts

Some will truly discover Me, but only those who are meant to and aren’t busy checking off their list of Christian things to do.

Road work ahead (for the church).

Things like this make my heart grieve. He sends me places with work to be done. I’m often sent with a message be it in the workplace, church, in public with a message to send. I’m either received or I’m not.

He asked me a few years back to deliver a message to a church where He told me “Amanda, there’s witchcraft in the church. Don’t be mistaken- not the pointy-hat, magic spell kind, but the kind that is born out of a hard heart.”

The dreams I had of this were terrible yet they didn’t make me afraid, but it deeply saddened me. I saw a creature that was consuming believers in a barn that represented the church. I was on to it and I tried to warn people but they ignored me. Dead bodies were turning up buried underneath the grass (which represents the flesh) and there was a woman by the name of Danielle (Meaning God is my judge) that I found slimed and buried. Our churches are preaching this hyper grace that makes people feel like they are bulletproof. The enemy has infiltrated our churches and has put to death and buried the side of God that means business. They suddenly pretend His judgement isn’t real and so they live half-baked Christianeese lives in this place of extreme grace and don’t fear the Lord, and lack His wisdom.

I was at Bible study tonight at my friends house and I told them what the Lord spoke to me. I spent the day painting bedrooms so I didn’t have time to find scripture to back up what I had heard but as I said it my dear friends provided just what I needed.

Acts 19:13-16: 13 Some Jews who went around driving out evil spirits tried to invoke the name of the Lord Jesus over those who were demon-possessed. They would say, “In the name of the Jesus whom Paul preaches, I command you to come out.” 14 Seven sons of Sceva, a Jewish chief priest, were doing this. 15 One day the evil spirit answered them, “Jesus I know, and Paul I know about, but who are you?” 16 Then the man who had the evil spirit jumped on them and overpowered them all. He gave them such a beating that they ran out of the house naked and bleeding.

This walk is all about relationship. It doesn’t matter how much power you have, how anointed you are or how many people you have in your congregation, if it’s done with the wrong heart, you are wasting your time. Jesus name is the most powerful name but if you have no relationship with Him, you have zero authority to wield such a weapon. You could say in poops name and it would have the same effect. You can’t tell a random kid what to do or threaten them with a spanking, you know what they’ll say? You aren’t my mommy/daddy, I don’t have to listen to you. Demons feel the same way. They know what you carry and you can only gain His authority by spending time with Him.

Can you imagine someone using Jesus’ name like say ‘abracadabra’ or ‘alacazam’, no way! It sounds completely silly when put like that but that’s precisely what the 7 son’s of Sceva were doing. They were taking His name in vain because their efforts at using it got their butts kicked and they ran off naked and bleeding.

So my friends…there is witchcraft in the church. In many churches. It starts with a heart of rebellion and pride and an unwillingness to be corrected. Turn to Him with all your heart and seek Him while He can be found. Spend time with the Lover of your heart and build that relationship and gain that authority that is only found in His presence.

-Amanda

Emergent

There’s a word that is building and burning in my soul. The writhing and fighting will not be in vain! You’re emerging! Like a butterfly from its cocoon, you are fighting against all that is trying to contain you; to keep you in the old season. But I declare that it’s time to break forth! Burst out like a butterfly, like a flower coming to bloom, it has risen from it’s death in the ground, come up from beneath the darkness, reached out to the light and it’s on the cusp of becoming all it was intended to be. The time of being chained, of being held back is OVER! The Lord says STAND UP AND BE WHO I HAVE CALLED YOU TO BE! You aren’t a wallflower! You were never meant to stand on the sidelines and just be. You were never meant to carry on day to day. You were not made for “normal” but abnormal! You were made for the Supernatural! To be a carrier of my Word and my love to the nations! To preach repentance and show the world how to truly live! Life has just begun for you, you have only just begun to see what I have in store for those who love Me. Your surrendered heart before me is most precious and your praises like incense rise up before me and I remember you. I remember the tears you have cried in the dark, the times when speaking my name didn’t grant you favor but trouble. But beloved! It’s time to stop dreaming about the future! It has arrived and you with it. You have grown and become all that I have promised you would become and I have brought you there. You have asked of me the nations and I have given. You have asked of me wisdom and I have given, you have held me to my word and I never lie. All I have promised is yours. Your children’s hearts? They are mine. The things you have held onto in hopeful anticipation, those things are also mine. You have freely surrendered those things to me. You have sought me above all else. You have desired me above all else. You have laid down your life and your plans and have taken up mine. So all that you have laid down shall be yours because I have given it to you. Don’t you see? I have leapt over mountains chasing after you, pursuing your heart in so many different ways and you have taken My love into your heart and let it fill you, repair you, and heal you. When things fail in life, you call out to me and I show up. Not always in the way you expect, but I’m there. Not always in the time you expect but still I show up in My time. I am calling you out. Arise from the dust, emerge from your cocoon beloved! Wipe the sleep from your eyes, it’s time to arise and emerge for the land I have for you to occupy is READY! It’s ready for you to occupy and the giants that you face you don’t face alone. I am there to stand with you, sword at the ready just like I was for Joshua, so will I be for you. The army that stands against you is all smoke and mirrors, they are giants of your heart. Surrender the battle to me as we walk together into the promised land that I have prepared for you since before time began. All that stands up against you stands up against me. Know that I have your heart in my hands and all that I plan is for your good. All that I allow is for your growth and cleansing so you can bloom the brightest. I want you to be a sign to the world that I AM here; that I have come to cleanse nations by healing hearts. I set you on display for all to see, like a royal diadem in my hand, I will show you off to all who will behold my face so they can see my work. The Great I AM has done a thing; can you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness, streams in the wasteland, turning rocks to flesh and growing trees in parched dirt. Oh come my children, and reach your tendrils of love toward Me and through you my spirit will stretch out into the land….Hark! Can you see there? Out in the distance? A tiny cloud the size of a man’s fist? Call forth the rain! Call forth the rain! It has come! The barren winter cannot hold on anymore! The season has changed right now here in this moment, not tomorrow, not next week or next year but TODAY! A new day has come!! Rise up my beloved!

Isaiah 35 New International Version (NIV)

Joy of the Redeemed

35 

The desert and the parched land will be glad;

    the wilderness will rejoice and blossom.

Like the crocus, it will burst into bloom;

    it will rejoice greatly and shout for joy.

The glory of Lebanon will be given to it,

    the splendor of Carmel and Sharon;

they will see the glory of the Lord,

    the splendor of our God.

Strengthen the feeble hands,

    steady the knees that give way;

say to those with fearful hearts,

    “Be strong, do not fear;

your God will come,

    he will come with vengeance;

with divine retribution

    he will come to save you.”

Then will the eyes of the blind be opened

    and the ears of the deaf unstopped.

Then will the lame leap like a deer,

    and the mute tongue shout for joy.

Water will gush forth in the wilderness

    and streams in the desert.

The burning sand will become a pool,

    the thirsty ground bubbling springs.

In the haunts where jackals once lay,

    grass and reeds and papyrus will grow.

And a highway will be there;

    it will be called the Way of Holiness;

    it will be for those who walk on that Way.

The unclean will not journey on it;

    wicked fools will not go about on it.

No lion will be there,

    nor any ravenous beast;

    they will not be found there.

But only the redeemed will walk there,

10 

    and those the Lord has rescued will return.

They will enter Zion with singing;

    everlasting joy will crown their heads.

Gladness and joy will overtake them,

    and sorrow and sighing will flee away.

Worst Valentines Day Ever…

Let me tell you about the worst Valentines Day I ever had…

You know, in retrospect I giggle at this story because it’s so completely…ridiculous that if I don’t laugh I would probably cry…well technically I did. But as I’ve gotten older and once again single I realize the weight put on Valentines day. It’s a single day in an entire calendar year that we use to show our significant other how much we love them…

…Shouldn’t we be doing that the other 364 days per year too? Hmm, just a thought.

So there I was, nearly 20 years old, had been dating my boyfriend for about a year and a half and things were okay. I mean, they weren’t perfect but no one’s relationship was, right? Things between him and I were waning and I could feel it from him and I didn’t understand why. His family loved me, his brothers loved me…except his youngest brother who was Autistic…he just threw shoes at me.

So Valentines day 2003 went down in my history books as the WORST Valentines Day EVER. It included candy hearts, a card and some coyotes and shoes…or a lack thereof. Oh, and video games.

I worked retail at the time and I found the most adorable skirt on clearance for a buck. I’m a seer so I can always see things differently than everyone else. This skirt was way too small for me and it was an ankle length skirt. When I finished it was knee length and fit me perfectly. I added some lace and ribbon and was pretty satisfied with my outfit for Valentines day…cause of course I needed somewhere to wear it to. My wheels began turning and I was devising an awesome Valentines day for this boyfriend of mine. I was going to make a picnic, take him to the beach and eat on the sand and take a walk after and just make it a nice romantic evening for us. I was so excited! Two weeks before Valentines Day had arrived I started working on my skirt and I told him that I had made plans for us for Valentines Day. He frowned a bit and said “Oh, I had made plans for us for Valentines Day.” No worries, I’m flexible! I told him we could do what he had planned. When I asked him what the plans were he wouldn’t tell me. It was a surprise.

Valentines Day arrived.  I got off of work, got all dressed up, curled my hair, did my makeup and got dressed and drove the 25 minutes to his house up in Carbon Canyon. I get there and he’s not dressed. I asked him why he wasn’t dressed and he looked at me and said “Why are you dressed up?” I looked at his mom who looked at me and we both had the raised eyebrow and she said, “Ryan, today is Valentines Day.” to which he responded,

“Is that supposed to mean something to me?”  I stood there speechless. I asked him about the plans he said he had made and I was told that he made it up. It was all a lie because he didn’t want me being the one to make plans. So there I was. All dressed up and literally nowhere to go. I sat there on the couch, he sat to my right and refused to get up. He said that Valentines Day is such a commercialized day and it was stupid anyway. Then his dad walked in.

“Happy Valentines Day!” said his dad as he came around and passed out candy hearts to his kids and gave his wife some flowers and chocolates. He handed me a box of conversation hearts and said, “What did your Valentine get you??” I broke. The dams of frustration and hurt couldn’t hold it back anymore and I blurted out, “NOTHING!” and I ran out of the house as he said, “I don’t know what the big deal is!”

I was infuriated. I was so mad that I had made plans for him that he asked me to set aside just because it was bothering his pride that I wanted to make the plans and not him. So I took a walk. At night. Without shoes or a sweater. I walked down the street, went out to a semi main road and walked down the middle of the street just hoping he would chase after me. He would wouldn’t he? I cried all of my mascara off and I kept feeling like I was being followed. I paused and turned around and saw 3 sets of glowing eyes off to the side; Coyotes. Trying not to panic or run or show fear I started walking a little faster and at some point I turned around and shouted, “YOU BETTER LEAVE ME ALONE!!”  Starting to get cold, I decided to head back. I get inside and he asked me why I was hiding at his next door neighbors house, who happened to be my friend. I insisted I wasn’t and told him what happened. He figured I must have been lying and hiding out in the horse stables directly behind his house. He thought I was lying. I just got trailed by coyotes for a few blocks! “Why didn’t you come after me?!” I asked. Because he didn’t think I actually left. Unbelievable. I’m mad as heck. He gets up and gets dressed and says ok, let’s go somewhere. So, we meet up with his best friend and his girlfriend…who both seem to be having a similar night. On our way to his friends house he reaches under the seat and hands me a grocery bag. He said,

“Here. I got this for you. I read the first couple of lines and it sounded like something you’d like.”  Unsigned. Not even in the envelope. I was devastated. What was happening! So we got to his friends house and we all decided we were gonna go get something to eat. At least that would make my night feel a little better. So myself and his best friend’s girlfriend Addy sat there and waited. And waited. They started playing a video game…and we waited…until it was far too late for a nice dinner…in fact it was almost no longer Valentines Day when we finally got some fast food.

Shortly after that I broke it off. It was okay, apparently he was going to as well.

You ever look them up years later and go *whew* dodged that bullet…yeah it’s kinda like that. We dodge some bullets and not others. But you know what I’ve learned about Valentines Day since then, and even through being married and divorced?

You can’t make up for a lack of love on one single day of the year. You. Just. Can’t. You either love or you don’t. Ladies, this is why we are waiting. Because the Love the the Lord gives us is WORTH THE WAIT, no matter how long the wait ends up being. The Love the Lord gives you has been tested, tried, true. The Lord saw that man’s heart and thought yes, this is good enough for my daughter. But let’s think about that in reverse. The Love the Lord has promised someone else in YOU is worth the wait. He’s still working on us. We have to learn to love ourselves, even on Valentines Day. Don’t shut yourself away with a box of chocolates and a box of tissues hiding under a blanket. Take yourself out to dinner! Have a glass of wine, and a bit of dessert. You are worth it. Do something for you, set an expectation for yourself that you won’t give in to the commercialization of this “holiday” and expect someone to do something for you. Do it for yourself. And don’t just do it on Valentines Day. Make a habit of taking yourself out! We put such a heavy expectation on this day…especially on men. It’s unfair. The only expectation we should have is our own of ourselves. Single or in a relationship, it’s still a day about Love. Treat yourself! Go have a bath, do something nice for you.

 

So, what are you waiting for! Go make some dinner reservations for ONE!

~Amanda

Forward Courageously

You know every time I get on this kick of documenting my journey someone I know ALWAYS comes along and says something like “Oh just be happy being single” or “You don’t need a man to take care of you” or “focus on God” and the list goes on. The fact is, I AM happy being single, I am okay alone. Some have felt I am crazy for waiting like I am. Others have made hurtful comments that have made me feel like they view me as desperate. If I was unhappy about being single I would NOT be content to wait and I would have been “out there” on the dating sites trying to catch a man and I haven’t. And yes, I don’t need a man to take care of me, that is also true. I’m God sufficient and I am blessed. Everything I have been able to do and accomplish is because He made it so. And wouldn’t you know it…my focus IS on God. The reason I share like this though is because this IS a big part of my spiritual life and journey. This is the thing He has chosen to use to grow and stretch my faith and cause me to get closer to Him. It’s difficult for people who don’t hear from God like I do…and even for those who DO hear God like I do to understand what He has asked me to do.  To many it doesn’t make sense and likely dear sister, you have come under fire too.

The Lord says, “I am the Alpha and the Omega; the Beginning and the End. Is there anything that is too hard for me? I know your heart longs for finality; completion of the things I have said to you but Beloved, just a little bit more. I will bring to pass all that I have promised you and though it tarry, wait for it. The sun rises over the mountains and falls over the oceans, and dear one I created these things; am I not more faithful than they? I know you don’t see what I see, but I am changing hearts because of you. Because of you and for you people are seeing Me! Though you don’t see your fruitfulness, it’s there and there’s more than you can imagine. Every time you perceive failure is an opportunity for you to allow Me to step in and do what only I can do. Failure is not recorded, all I see is a surrendered and permissive heart, a heart that says YES to Me. If you only knew it’s value; more than rubies and I will strengthen you like diamonds. I see your heart aching, I see all of the things you are up against, the things that threaten to break you but they cannot. You are a carrier of my strength and My Glory and nothing can break you dear one because it has to come through me first. I hold off much of what you are up against and let some through to refine you and condition you like fine leather until you are versatile and flexible and beautiful. You are being fitted for a crown of righteousness and know that it is already yours in the Spirit. I see your finished state, full of faith and boldly declaring the things of the Lord over your towns, regions, states and countries. There is nothing that can hold back this move of God and there’s nothing that can no longer hold you back either. Throw off the chains of yesterday, they don’t belong to you anymore. Throw off your cares because I care for you. I will supply all your needs according to My riches in Glory according the Jesus- the one I sent to chase you down and bring you into my heart. You were made for such a time as this and it’s time. Time to stand before the King and declare your needs.”

Today the Lord has brought up the word courage. It’s taken some courage to post the last 7 posts. But more than that, our forward movement is also going to take some courage to move us from where we are into where we are going. IMG_1104

God told you who your husband is…and you messed up (Pt 7)

My story isn’t over here. It’s only beginning and I’m starting to see the Lords beautiful plan begin to unfold.

After my moment of panic and being laid off for a VERY long summer at home with my kids, the Lord was true to His word and I landed a job back at the same place I once worked before the layoff. It was more than I could have dreamed, working with familiar faces- and no longer a contractor. Although I have been ruined for the ordinary and Spiritual matters consumes a great deal of my heart, I do enjoy the people and the job. The Lord is moving in my life- and He’s moving in yours too.

But there’s two words that have made me shudder, caused me unrest and at times fear.

Free will.

Yep. The words that threaten every promise the Lord has given because He will never act against it. He’s a gentleman like that. That means that the Lord could present me to this man I have been covering in prayer and praying over for nearly three years and he could exercise his free will and say no.

Could you imagine?? No??? The thought is enough to bring you to your knees, begging and pleading for a do-over and more questions than you have answers to. But let me assure you of something;

God is NOT surprised. Not even a little bit.

Your prayers apply still. But listen- if GOD (not you…the Lord will present you to him, not you. You are in NO WAY to chase after or pursue this man…you wait and the Lord will let you know the status) presents beautiful and ready you to your future husband and he says no- 1. The Lord May yet have the last word. It becomes a wait 2. If it’s a no and the Lord releases you from him – God already knew and He will let you know too. There was a purpose to you walking through this and He has another of equal value, NOT a second best, a First best. There’s never plan B with God. He knows the end from the beginning and knows what will happen before it does. It may frustrate him when people don’t follow His ways- but it never surprises Him. He’s not shaken by our disobedience. And if your future husband rejects you- he wasn’t ready or mature enough in the first place and doesn’t deserve you.

There are others who need your story. They need what you and your future husband have to offer and the calling God has placed on your lives. Don’t give up. The enemy wouldn’t fight you and try to steal from you if what you are fighting for wasn’t already yours. Did you hear me?

The enemy can’t steal from you if it’s not already yours!!

And there are others around you who will be affected by the anointing on your lives. Those that your journey is also helping to grow.

I haven’t mentioned my children much in this. I did my best to hide and keep this silent from them. And I was largely successful until recently. Back on July 4th of 2016 I explained to my children that in 5 days their dad would be getting remarried. They asked questions like “are you marrying our daddy too” and “who are you marrying” and why I wasn’t going to be there. I explained that I had been given a promise and certain criteria and I was not going to compromise and marry just anyone. I would marry the only one. I said only God could bring this man. I also explained that they would be getting a new mommy, not to replace me but in addition to me. They understood that this was addition and not takeaway. At 8:45 pm on July 4th, 2016 my children prayed simultaneously and said,

“Dear God, please bring my mommy a husband so we can have a new daddy” and I cried. I knew at that moment that this was their promise too. My children are prophetically gifted like me and so I knew I had to be careful not to plant information that would affect their dreams. If God wanted to reveal it to them, I wanted them to get pure information not information they absorbed from me.

Unfortunately I didn’t take into account that my child can read (REALLY well I might add) and my journal is within reach of tiny hands at any time. I love that he loves to read…just not my journal…and not to his sister. It took a while but they figured it out, pausing some days to gawk and point and say his name really loudly at church to the point where- well remember I said I had been getting resentful? I couldn’t keep up pretenses when my daughter in a reach for attention told me she saw him, hugged him and told him he was her new daddy. I’ve not been that mad in a while, so mad I panicked. I cried. I wondered if I would be escorted from church on Sunday. I fought with this fear for a week only for my daughter to say she was just kidding. What was funny was by the end of the week I had come to terms with it all and I no longer cared.

So I asked the Lord to give me peace to leave- He said no. A month later I asked again and His peace flooded my heart. I was free to go. Granted there was work to be done where I wanted to go, I was glad to go. I needed the break. And I was certain that no one would miss me. I was wrong. It took one Sunday absence for my friend to reach out, two for my other friend. I was loved! I was valued! I spent so much of my life in the reject pile I assumed in pride that no one cared. And after almost 2 months gone, I went back and it felt like home. We have to remember that we go to church to be with the Body of Christ, to worship the Lord, and to learn and edify each other. We don’t go to church for people. People will ALWAYS fail you and it’s not about them remember? Nor you.

I know that many people there know about my promise. I know that they know who my heart is after and I also know that I didn’t tell many of those people. But it’s okay. Maybe they need to see a display of God’s power, His promise fulfillment at work in my life to resurrect promises in theirs. Remember our God is in the business of resurrection and restoration, and He will raise you up in the sight of all who doubted you. Not so you can act prideful but so you can encourage others to believe in the Promise Keeper again. So lost and cold dreams can be brought back to life, so the furnace fires can be lit once more and you can lead others into standing steadfast. He never forgets a promise!!

And He hasn’t forgotten yours. When you get into the dance with the Lord- surrender, yes, receive, surrender, yes Lord, receive, you are growing in your faith and are learning how to lead others in the dance as well.

Dance beloved!

~Amanda