Stop Expecting the Church To Promote You

Promotion comes from GodVenom spewed out of her mouth as she vented her frustration. She had served her local church all these years, she said, but the church didn’t recognize her talents. She wanted to be promoted to a specific position, but the promotion she wanted was nowhere in sight. She was angry at God and the church because she had not been given the authority she felt she deserved.

I felt sorry for the woman as I heard her talking: not because she hadn’t been promoted, but rather because she couldn’t hear the poison in her own words. Despite her natural abilities, there were heart issues at play. It seemed pretty obvious that, until she was willing to submit to God’s work in her own heart, the odds of her getting the promotion she wanted were zero. [Read more...]

Superstars Versus Fathers

boy rock starFrom the archives: I am reposting this today as it might be one of the most impactful and necessary pieces I’ve ever written. What do you think about superstars vs. fathers? Please share your thoughts in the comments at the end of the post!

The Christian Church at large has a lot of superstars. I wish it had a lot of fathers instead.

“What’s the difference?” you may ask. Here’s what I think (and please tell me your thoughts in the comments):

A superstar and a father may have the same level of talent, training, anointing, and opportunity. However, there is a big difference in behavior and heart attitude between the superstar and the father. There’s also a big difference in results.

Heart attitudes and behavior of superstars versus fathers:

  • A superstar gathers people around him so they can serve him. A father gathers people around him so he can serve them.
  • A superstar elevates himself. A father elevates others. [Read more...]

4 Simple Keys to Finding Rest For Your Soul

4 simple keys to finding rest for your soulThe world whirs around us in a dizzying array. Life is so fast that some folks–like maybe you, and definitely like me–rarely have time to stop, let alone rest.

When life gets overwhelming, we need rest not only for our bodies, but also for our souls.

Why does finding rest for your soul matter? [Read more...]

If My Dream Never Happens (My Thankfulness Fail)

If my dream never happens (my thankfulness fail)I don’t know about you, but I have a dream inside me that I haven’t seen happen yet. Do you?

If so, then maybe you can identify with this, because I’ve been struggling with something lately.

Here’s what I have been struggling with:

[Read more...]

Pray These 3 Things To Tame Your Tongue

God can tame the tongueHave you ever gotten frustrated with your own inability to tame your tongue?

James 3:7-8 tells us that no man can tame the tongue, and that it is evil and full of poison in its natural state. Ugh! How terrible! What hope do we have, then?

This is our hope: We may not be able to control our words, but we serve a God who CAN tame our tongue!

My article in The Christian Journal this month contains 3 powerful points to pray in order to get your tongue tamed. If you, like me, have not yet reached perfection in the area of your words, hop on over to The Christian Journal and read “God Can Tame the Tongue”! It’s on page 8, top left corner.

Click here to read “God Can Tame the Tongue” now!

 

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What Does the Voice of Jesus Sound Like?

voice of Jesus sounds like the sound of many watersThe Bible tells us that the voice of Jesus sounds like the sound of many waters. Have you ever wondered what, exactly, that means?

I am sitting beside a tumbling mountain creek in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park as I write this. There are many small rapids and waterfalls around me, and the rushing water hitting against the rocks makes a distinctive sound.

I learned from Ray Hughes that this sound of water is similar to [Read more...]

Would You Tell Me Your Opinion, Please?

Hello, friends! I need your opinion today. Would you help me by telling me what you think?

I’ve been blogging just over a year and a half now, and it has been such a joy. I really enjoy connecting with you via this blog as we grow in the Presence of God together. THANK YOU for reading, for commenting, for emailing me, and for all your social media “likes” and shares.

I’d really like your feedback about what you enjoy vs. not-so-much about this blog. I want to know how I can serve you better with this blog. Would you please complete the brief, 5-question, multiple-choice survey below? It’s super-easy and will only take a few seconds, and all your answers are completely anonymous.

Thank you in advance for your thoughts! :)

Create your free online surveys with SurveyMonkey , the world’s leading questionnaire tool.

Radical Prayer #4: The Anointing of the Sons of Issachar

How to know God's timing anointing of the sons of IssacharDid you know that, in the Bible, there was a unique group of people that always knew what to do and when to do it? A group of folks that had such perception and wisdom that a whole nation followed them and waited for their example?

It’s true. They were called the sons of Issachar, and they were one of the twelve tribes of Israel.

Check out what these bad boys (and girls) had going for them:

  • They studied the movements of the stars and planets and understood chronological time.
  • They were responsible for calling the whole nation together when the stars aligned, literally. (The Jewish feast days are approximately based upon the lunar calendar, with consideration also given to the movement of the sun. The nation had to gather to worship God on specific days on this heavenly calendar.)
  • When signs and wonders happened in the heavens (with the sun, moon, stars, etc), the sons of Issachar knew how to interpret the meaning of those events.

The sons of Issachar understood chronological time, but they also understood spiritual and political time.

  • The sons of Issachar could discern what God was doing and when He was doing it.
  • They knew when one move of God was ending and another one was beginning.
  • They could discern when a leader was falling and another leader was rising.
  • They could even tell you who the next leader should be. They knew who to follow and when to follow him or her. [Read more...]

If Your World Is Shaking, This Is For You

Mountains

If your world is shaking all around you, you are not alone.

I’ve been experiencing some shaking in my life recently. A couple of days ago, the Lord gave me a mental picture that brought me great comfort. The only way I could write it down was in poem format, and I felt led to share it with you today. So if your world is shaking, if your heart is breaking, this is for you. [Read more...]

The Most Important Article I’ve Ever Written: Does Heaven Move for You?

Does-Heaven-move-for-youThe most important article I’ve ever written was published yesterday on WorshipMinistry.com. It’s called “Does Heaven Move for You?”

This article is for every singer, musician, and worshipper. If you fit into any of those categories…

Click here to read the article on WorshipMinistry.com.

And after you read it, please leave a comment at the end of the article and let me know what you think about this topic!

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Book Review: Full Steam Ahead by Karen Witemeyer

Full Steam AheadI rediscovered my great love of fiction recently, and so I’ve been posting some book reviews in case you need a fun evening’s entertainment too. :) I read Full Steam Ahead by Karen Witemeyer a couple of weeks ago, and I have to say it was the best novel I’ve read in a long time.

Witemeyer’s writing is excellent. Full Steam Ahead was gripping from the first page to the last page. I’ve read several of Witemeyer’s books before, and loved them all, but this one was maybe even the best. Her characters are fully-developed. Her plot was intense but not overwhelmingly so. Her heroine was smart and funny and skillful. It was well-researched historically. It was just awesome. I couldn’t put it down. I stayed up late into the night to finish it. For this 7:00-PM-bedtime-girl, that’s SERIOUS. ‘Nuff said. Go read this book!

I did receive a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review, but the free copy didn’t influence my opinion. The book still rocks and I’d have paid for it in a heartbeat. :)

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Architecture as Worship: Monastery of the Holy Spirit

Have you noticed that you can learn new things about God anywhere, if you will just look for Him?

I love to look for hints and clues about God’s character in untraditional places, and architecture is one of those untraditional things that can be a great demonstration of God’s character.

I know we usually think of architecture as a way to manufacture shelter, hopefully with beauty that is pleasing to the eye and functional for everyday life. However, some of the most beautiful architecture in the world wasn’t done for the purpose of just being practical; it was used as worship. Architecture has been used to worship and glorify God for thousands of years.

My husband and I took a trip down to the Monastery of the Holy Spirit in Conyers, Georgia recently. It was an amazing day at an amazing place. After we explored the grounds and museum there, I was able to spend the afternoon sitting in the balcony of their church. This church, which I would call a cathedral by my standards, :) was beautiful. As soon as you walked in, you could feel the weighty brooding of the Holy Spirit. This is what it looked like on the inside:

Monastery of the Holy Spirit

Monastery of the Holy Spirit

The chapel is not actually blue, but the stained glass windows have a lot of blue in them, so the windows put a blue cast on everything. But in reality, the columns and arches are all whitish-gray concrete. This entire church was molded, framed, and poured by hand by the Trappist monks that live there. It’s amazing.

As I sat in the balcony, I was overwhelmed by the Presence of the Lord there. He was so heavy. You could feel Him so powerfully that I just sat there and cried and cried, and looking at the beauty of the building brought me a deeper revelation of His majesty.

While we were there, I wanted to try recording some of my thoughts from this experience, and my husband was kind enough to record for me. Here is my first-ever vlog. It’s very short, but I believe it will move you as seeing this place moved me. Take a listen:

God is everywhere. His majesty is on display for all to see. Let’s look for Him everywhere we go today, shall we?

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The Ferris Wheel of Promotion

ferris wheel of promotionHave you ever been in a season of favor, then had that favor seemingly stripped from you?

Are you waiting for your godly dream to happen, but instead of seeing increased favor, it seems like you get to go through a season of death?

If yes, you’re not alone. I think everybody in the Body of Christ goes through that. The problem is that [Read more...]

God Has Not Forgotten You

God-has-not-forgotten-youI have a feeling that someone reading this today feels alone, upset, frustrated, and blue. If that describes you, I want you to encourage you with this message: God has not forgotten you.

I know that sometimes it feels like He might have forgotten you:

  • When your prayers go unanswered, or seem to go unanswered;
  • When doors of opportunity that you want God to open stay tightly closed instead;
  • When bad things happen unexpectedly;
  • When your feeler goes numb and all you can feel is apathy;
  • When bills pile up, income goes down, and you just aren’t seeming to get ahead;
  • When your dream doesn’t happen as quickly as you want it to.

I get it. Sometimes you can feel forgotten in those times. [Read more...]

I’m Sick of Seeking the Church

Sick of seeking the church. Image courtesy of Salvatore Vuono / freedigitalphotos.netI’m sick of seeking the Church.

Are you shocked at that? Afraid I’ve taken to backsliding? :) Before you get too upset, allow me to explain.

I’ve noticed something lately that bothers me a lot. Here it is: whenever I have sat down to spend time alone with the Lord, it seems to be the Church that comes to mind, not the Lord. For example:

  • When I’ve opened Scripture, I’ve immediately read it and then thought, “How can I work this into my next LifeGroup lesson?” or  “How can we use this to become more effective in the  intercessory prayer meeting I lead?”
  • When I’ve begun to pray, my prayers haven’t been focused on the Lord, or on me, or on my relationship with the Lord. Instead, they’ve been focused on praying for the Church.

This preoccupation with the Church has kind of crept up on me. I didn’t notice it happening, and then suddenly a few days ago it became glaringly obvious.

Now, this blog post isn’t meant to disparage the Church. All of you who have read my blog for any period of time, or know me personally, know that I LOVE the Church. I mean, I LOVE THE CHURCH. My call is to the Church and I serve my local church faithfully every single week. I LOVE the Church. No doubt, no question, 100% love.

But this problem with my suddenly seeking the Church is not a matter of loving the Church or not. This problem is about something else entirely. The real problem is this:

When did I stop seeking Jesus?

I remember when I used to sit down with my Bible and just worship Jesus. [Read more...]