Word From the Lord

Around three am this morning, I heard these words from the Lord, in my spirit.

“Behold America is changing. Her borders are closing. This is My doing, for I am a just God. Everyone wants a better life, yet many come, and never develop an appreciation for this country.  You have tried to trust in human instinct, and friends, and friends of friends, but look at the devastation that has brought throughout your country. Your currency still says, ‘In God We Trust’. Look at it often and PRAY. This statement is to be an everlasting Stone of Remembrance of how I, yes I, led you here and established a nation of freedom and put My name on it. (See Joshua 4) Many of you have gotten fat off this land,  and that has caused you to become proud and walk independent of My ways. But why are you rebellious My sons and daughters? Why do you not seek Your Creator for His righteous council and perfect wisdom?”

More from the mouth of God:

Seek the Lord when he can still be found;
    call him while he is yet near.
Let the wicked abandon their ways
    and the sinful their schemes.
Let them return to the Lord so that he may have mercy on them,
    to our God, because he is generous with forgiveness.
 My plans aren’t your plans,
nor are your ways my ways, says the Lord.
Just as the heavens are higher than the earth,
    so are my ways higher than your ways,
    and my plans than your plans.
Just as the rain and the snow come down from the sky
        and don’t return there without watering the earth,
        making it conceive and yield plants
        and providing seed to the sower and food to the eater,
   so is my word that comes from my mouth;
        it does not return to me empty.
        Instead, it does what I want,
        and accomplishes what I intend. (Isaiah 55:6-11)

”Call to Me, says the Lord, and I will teach your government My wisdom in this season.” Amen!

 

 

 

Photos via Pixabay.com

All postings are written by Selena Phillips unless otherwise stated. You are encouraged to share postings on this site in hard copy form or email (PDF). Be sure to include Spirit-to-Soul.com website and contact information.

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Our Gifts, Our Weapons of Power

Ephesians 6:11-18 warns us in this way, “Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.  For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.  In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.

I believe God has transitioned the body of Christ into a new season of development. We are full of knowledge and teaching, yet we still speak negatively and walk in fear of our future. This is because our knowledge of God’s goodness is not mixed with faith. Do you know that negative talking for a Christian is a form of evil speaking? It does not line up with the Spirit of Christ within us, which is the word of God, and it opens the door to the evil one, Satan (Proverbs 18:21; Ephesians 4:30,31). In this season, the Church is called to rise up, undistracted by the chaos of the world, and begin to connect with the mind and heart of God. The strivings and anxious concerns of yesterday are over. God is not sitting nervously on some distant throne. He is still large and in charge and He is shifting the mindset of His Church!

Much of the body of Christ have lived in a state of underdevelopment. We have unconsciously passed the legacy of weak Christianity onto the generations watching and following behind us. We have seen many of our Church-taught youth become prey to the enemy because they lack personal encounters with the Savior of their souls, Christ Jesus. BUT…things are changing. Holy Spirit is chasing after them with truth and the spirit of boldness accompanied with power to do mighty things in the name of Jesus.

Weak Christianity is salvation without knowing or walking in the power and authority we, as blood bought children of God, possess. It is time to be developed into who we really are. Every gift from God is anointed to encourage, strengthen, change the atmosphere around us, and even change lives. The Holy Spirit has been sharing with me the power behind the gifts each born-again believer receives when they give their hearts to Jesus. We have treated what heaven has bestowed upon us lightly because we did not understand that each gift is also a weapon against the enemy and weapons of power and authority for us to use in the world in which we live.

The Greek word for weapon is hóplon. It means an instrument normally used for war; armor. Let’s face it, there are two kingdoms; the kingdom of darkness ruled by Satan and the kingdom of righteousness and light, ruled by God and His Christ. The weapons of our warfare in the kingdom of righteousness are not of this world, but they are mighty to the pulling down of demonic strongholds (2 Corinthians 10:3, 4 paraphrased). That is why those who belong to God through Jesus Christ have been equipped with instruments/tools to prevail. Let’s review some of our Spirit-given gifts/weapons.

The weapon of Holy Spirit: This is our lead power weapon! Without Holy Spirit none of the weapons we’ve been equipped with will work effectively. The third person of the God-head, He is the most misunderstood and under-used weapon we have been given. He lives inside of us and is our Helper to teach, comfort, and develop us into true sons and daughters of God. (John 14:26 NKJV) It is He who bestows new visions, new levels of anointings, and new mantels upon us. (Let’s just pause here for a “Hallelujah” praise break for the Holy Spirit!)

The weapon of Love: The Greek word for love here is agape (Strong’s G25). This kind of love operates through us regardless of the personalities of others. We are given a command to live this way in Matthew 5:43-48. We may not like what they do or what they say, but we are commanded to love. It becomes our weapon against hate, division, and revenge. We are carriers of the light of Christ that shines brightly among the darkness. When we walk in love, the enemy’s schemes have no power or authority over us. It is super, or beyond, what we call natural.

The weapon of Thanksgiving: A thankful heart is a grateful heart. It is a weapon that keeps our hearts at peace. It says to the Lord, “I see the bad, but I choose to focus on the good. I bless You for all the good. Lord, You are always good, and I know You will turn even the bad around to work out for my good because I am the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus.” (Romans 8:28, Philippians 4:6, 7)

The weapon of Prayer: Prayer is open communication with God and Jesus Christ through the Holy Spirit. We get this open line of communication at salvation. There is a mandate from heaven to the church to get stirred up again to pray for our nation, our world, God’s beloved Israel, our families, ourselves, and the body of Christ as a whole. When we allow our weapons of love and forgiveness to be developed, our hearts are softened to pray for each other as well as our enemies. It is so vital to our well-being and the world, that 1Thessalonians 5:17 tells us to pray without ceasing.

The weapon of Forgiveness: This weapon cleanses the soul and makes peace with it. I listed prayer before forgiveness as a reminder that oftentimes we pray without surrendering our anger and unforgiveness, while expecting God to do mighty things for us. We all know this is wrong, yet we refuse to release others, or make peace with them, or even allow ourselves to love them the way Jesus would. (Selah) Forgiveness is choosing to not be controlled by the emotions of hurt and pain. It acknowledges and feels the wrong, but rushes to take it to Jesus until the memory no longer has the power over our hearts and lives the enemy intended it to have. (Ephesians 4:32)

The weapon of Humility: Walking in the shoes of peace, humility is our weapon of inner strength. It does not push for status or recognition, and it is master over selfishness because the human will is submitted to God’s will. (Colossians 3:12,13) Unfortunately, humility has been mistaken as a form of weakness by some, but Jesus’ life has proved that to be untrue. Being fully submitted to the will of His Father, zeal for God’s house, prompted Jesus to aggressively drive out sellers and buyers at an outdoors market set up in the temple court. (Matthew 21:12; Philippians 2:7,8))

The weapon of Wisdom: In this season, we will need the wisdom of God. It is ours for the asking (James 1:5, 3:17). A brief definition of wisdom is, “good sense shown in a way of thinking, judgment, or action”. When the Spirit of God is involved, the wisdom we have access to is not dependent on our own limited personal knowledge and experience, it is acquired through the infinite knowledge and wisdom of our God, the awesome and all-knowing creator of the universe. (Oops, another pause for a “Thank You, Lord” praise break!)

The weapon of Obedience: Some might not consider obedience a weapon, but it stumps fear and doubt into the ground. It operates on a level that pulls blessings and rewards down from heaven; propelling us into new levels of authority and releasing new vision to us because we prove ourselves trustworthy to the leading of the Spirit of God. Beginning in Genesis 12, read the story of Abraham and see how obedience propelled him from one blessing to another.

All of our weapons allow the blood of Jesus to carry us to a place in Him that repels the natural demands of the flesh. We carry them on the inside of us to fight against the fiery darts of the enemy.  They are all designed to work in sync and interchangeably with the armor of God to help us fight back.. No weapons or plans of evil formed against us will prosper as we allow Holy Spirit to develop us into the super-natural, Spirit-led beings we were created to be.

This is also a time where fresh revelation, wisdom and understanding is being poured out on the Church, but only on those who want to be used by God. This season is calling for hearts that want to be changed. We are the true Changers of our environment and spheres of influence. Let’s ask God to show us what other weapons of power we carry within us that need to be yielded to the Holy Spirit for development.

As we come into a new year; even into a new season, let’s allow Holy Spirit to develop the gifts/weapons He has given us. He is a patient and loving instructor. This must be a season of empowerment for the Bride of Christ – abundant life with courage, power, miracles, and walking unashamedly in the footsteps of Jesus. The way Holy Spirit chooses to take us is designed to stretch us. It will fight against our flesh. However, God knows what each of us needs in order to be developed into vessels of light in a darkening world. God is looking for Spiritually developed people. Trust Him and follow the leading of His Spirit.

 

All postings are written by Selena Phillips unless otherwise stated. You are encouraged to share postings on this site in hard copy form or email (PDF). Be sure to include Spirit-to-Soul.com website and contact information.

 

 

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Spiritual Lessons from the Caterpillar

caterpillarI added two small buddleia bushes in my garden this summer. They are called butterfly bushes because butterflies are attracted to them. I was so excited with the anticipation of beautiful butterflies flying around the yard. (photo via Spirit-to-Soul.com)

One day, I walked outside and discovered little fuzzy creatures crawling in my drive and along the side of the garden. They were caterpillars. I thought, “What a nuisance!” Those roly-poly, fuzzy creatures were crawling all around the garden near the butterfly bush. Then it finally dawned on me, caterpillars become butterflies! I was witnessing the beginning stage of the butterfly. That’s when the Lord began to teach me some spiritual lessons through the caterpillars.

Like mankind, the caterpillar is created with a destiny already inside of it. With certainty, it knows that is to become a butterfly. Unlike the caterpillar, however, many humans have no idea that there is a destiny inside of them. Unfortunately, the same holds true for many Christians.

The caterpillar is hatched on a leaf, and right away the newborn begins to eat leaves. It instinctively knows that it was not created to stay a caterpillar, so it eats to get strong for the trials and tests it will have to endure to accomplish its destiny.

Every born again believer has to reach the level of eating the word of God. Initially, all we could take in was milk. We learned the foundational teachings of salvation (John 3:16).  Many Christians get comfortable with their baby formula in Christ and stay in that state for years, if not a life-time. Unlike the caterpillar, they do not realized they were meant to hunger for more. They never get an image of themselves soaring high in the deep wisdom and revelation that God offers. In this state, some coast through life or die spiritually. (Selah) If you’re still feeding on the foundational milk of salvation, I tell you there is more for you. It’s time to stop sucking on the watered down food of the Word and start chewing on the scriptures that produce faith muscles of wisdom and spiritual revelation.

Did you know that the caterpillar faces challenges as it grows? It has to shed its old skin and make new skin as it grows larger?

For the Christian, growing up in Christ can be challenging, also. The Lord’s call on our lives involves shedding our old skin with it sinful habits and fleshy desires to accommodate the new spiritual skin God has for us. It involves trusting the Lord in every area of our lives. Will we go where He calls us to go? Will we use the gifts He gives us? Will we obey; say what He says, and do what He tells us to do? Sometimes we face the challenge of disconnecting from old friends who want nothing to do with a life in Jesus Christ. But like the caterpillar, our destiny is to transition. The more we eat the life-saving spiritual nutrients found in the Word of God and drink of the Living Water that flows through the Word to us, by the Spirit of God, we will transition from faith to faith. Hallelujah!

In the final stage of the caterpillar, the insect prepares itself for a God-ordained metamorphosis by spinning itself in a cocoon-like shell (called a chrysalis) and shutting itself off from its environment. During that time it is developing into something brand new.

We would call that separation a wilderness experience; a time or place where we are hidden by God for spiritual development. We have a cloud of witnesses who have gone before us and can testify of God’s faithfulness during wilderness journeys: Although anointed to be king over all Israel, David ran for his life from a jealous king, and lived with a band of lawless men in caves for years (1 Samuel 19, 1 Chronicles 12). Joseph, though destined to be great, was taken from family and friends and lived his young adult life as a slave, branded an attempted rapist, and put in prison in a foreign land (Genesis 37, 39). Daniel was a captive, placed in the kings’ palace, made a eunuch, treated with contempt by jealous leaders, and offered as food for hungry lions (Daniel 1-6). Yet, these heroes of faith prevailed in their wilderness experiences learning to trust the faithfulness of God. Our wildernesses is where we all get to make our own walk with the Lord personal. No one can take the journey for us.

If we trust God with our lives, we will find life with Him rewarding. When He pulls us away from the hustle and bustle of life, it is to take us to a place in Him we have never been before. We don’t all have the same wilderness experiences. God never gives us more than we can bear. However, we have all been given the same words of comfort for victory in our faith walk. “But those who trust in the Lord will find new strength. They will soar high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint.” (Isaiah 40:31)

I can just imagine other butterflies flying over the one shut up in the shell, yelling, “Be strong!”; “You can do it!”; “Keep pushing, you’re almost there!”

Are you one who encourages? Do you see others struggling or in need and pass by unaffected? Or does the compassion and love of Christ have rule over your heart?

When the caterpillar emerges from its spun-like cocoon, it has wings, legs, antennae, body parts, and is a fully developed butterfly. It looks nothing like it began. Soon it is ready to spread its wings and fly into the world to accomplish its purpose by bringing joy to us, pollinating and helping flowers, vegetables, and fruit produce new seeds, while reproducing more butterflies during their short lifespan.

Even the caterpillar wants to be all it was created to be. How about you? As Disciples of Christ, we must take some time for introspection. What are we pollinating, through the Holy Spirit, from day to day? What is our mission? Are we producing other disciples for the kingdom of God? Is our faith evident to others? Are we carrying the presence of God into our world? Do we forgive wrongs?

God wants mature children and desires to transform us into the beautiful creation He saw us as before the foundation of the world. And like the caterpillar, we can expect to become a new creation in Christ. Praise God for that!   (photo via Pixabay.com)butterfly-1705523_640

Let’s make a firm decision to finish strong in our mission for the kingdom of God and Jesus Christ. In the end, we want to say as Apostle Paul said in 2 Timothy 4:7 (NLT), “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, and I have remained faithful”. (Selah)

 

All postings are written by Selena Phillips unless otherwise stated. You are encouraged to share postings on this site in hard copy form or email (PDF). Be sure to include Spirit-to-Soul.com website and contact information.

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Storm Warning! Are You Prepared

caught-in-storm

 

Storm warning! Those are the words you typically see trailing across the bottom of your television screen accompanied by an ear-piercing sound when severe weather is imminent. It means everyone in the direction of the storm should take safety actions immediately. The rains come in hard, as the winds whip through the air like giant unseen tails. Storms can be expected when weather patterns produce violent disturbances in the atmosphere with strong winds, usually with rain, thunder, lightning, or snow (per online definition). Those who are in the path of nature’s storms can easily find themselves in the dark with no electricity. They bump over chairs searching for candles or flashlights. Too late, they discover that there are no matches for the candles they can’t find and the battery in their trusty flashlight is dead. Say, “Unprepared!”

Some storms pass over us, and others hit us with a vengeance, head-on. However, there are other storms that come our way that are life-storms. These affect our spiritual atmosphere by creating strong winds of adversity around us; thunderous conditions in our homes, and every element of disaster and destruction in our personal lives. There are storms that come against our character and integrity, and storms that blow hard against our finances, our health, and our loved ones. Its intent is to rattle the walls of our faith or bring it down all together. We all want our life-storms to pass over quickly, or fizzle out before it reaches us or our families. But sometimes, we are caught smack in the middle without any warning signs.  (Photo via Pixabay) Continue reading

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Heaven is Connecting with Earth

sun-raysHeaven has come down to us!

Friday, August 19th, while driving around 6:00 in the evening, my eyes were drawn to the sky ahead of me. I noticed the sky was alive and bright with billowy clouds. The sun was fading in intensity as the day was preparing for evening. I was fixated on the beauty of God’s sky. (By the way, no other traffic was near me, so all was well.)

Suddenly, my eyes caught a wide beam of light piercing through the sky. The light beam’s origin was above the clouds.There was a large hole or opening in the sky that the light was radiating from. Its beam could be distinguished from the natural brightness of the sky. The light beam traveled all the way down to the ground. I knew I was seeing an open portal from heaven to earth. (Photo via Pixabay.com) Continue reading

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You’re in a Season of Transition, Shift Over

Transition.change

Transition. That’s the word I keep hearing in my spirit. According to the online dictionary, transition is defined as the process of changing from one state, stage, or concept to another. It means to make a transformation, to move, to undergo metamorphosis, to evolve, shift, or switch. Continue reading

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Youth Advancing to Front Lines for the True God

Young People.ed

Our youth get a lot of negative publicity. The media bombards us with stories of rape, murder, and other crimes committed by young men and women; leaving most with a bleak outlook for future generations as well as the youth of today. This Post serves to remind our readers that there are beautiful stories about the youth of today that will never be aired through secular networks or papers because they are honorable and display righteousness.  Continue reading

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Daughters Arising, Again

Daughters Arising, AgainDaughters Arising, Again.2Daughters Arising, Again.3

On the heels of celebrating mothers and those who play the role of mother in so many ways in our lives, it seems fitting that the Holy Spirit would once again turn to, and extend a call to action to the daughters of God. “Go!” and “Tell!” (Photos via Pixabay)

As I sat quietly a few days ago, I was presented with a fresh scene of the daughters of God at the grave site of Jesus. These were the women who went to the tomb to anoint Jesus’ body after His crucifixion. When they arrived, they found that the stone to the entrance of the tomb had been moved and the tomb was left open and exposed. As they looked inside, they discovered the body of their beloved Master missing. Jesus was gone! “Who took His body?” they asked each other. Their hearts, already broken, were now broken beyond what they thought they could bear.

The earth shook and a brilliant light shone about. Through their tears, the women saw an angel waiting nearby. With words of encouragement, the angel gave these daughters of God an assignment that changed their lives forever: Continue reading

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The Cost of a Bowl of Stew

bowl of stewYou are a good cook and you make great stew. Your stew is so good, other people can’t wait to eat it. Yet you find yourself desiring someone else’s second rate stew. (Photo via Pixabay)

Chapters 25 and 27 of Genesis tell the story of two brothers, Esau and Jacob, who were rivals from the womb. As the oldest, though only by seconds, Esau would automatically inherit the rights and blessings of the first-born. However, his destiny would forever be changed because of a bowl of stew.  Continue reading

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STOPPING THE LEAK IN YOU

You go to bed after a long hard day; turn the lights off and breathe a sigh of relief. You’re so glad to end the day. It’s peaceful and quiet. Just as you turn over to go to sleep, you hear the leak from the faucet. Yes, you have a leaky faucet! The drip is slow at first, but you’re too tired to get up. Soon the leaking increases in frequency; irritating you and slowly stealing your peace. Avoiding Leaks

We are containers in the flesh where Jesus, through the Holy Spirit, dwells. God calls us His temple. As noted in 1Corinthians 6:19, at the moment of salvation, the Bible tells us our bodies become the Lord’s house. “Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies” (NIV). In other words, when we receive Christ Jesus as our Savior, the Father and Son come to live inside of us through the Holy Spirit. Continue reading

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