Silence never solves a problem…
I have never told this story publicly……because I was told not to. Why am I telling this story now…..because Prophets need to be a little better understood amongst “leadership” within the church-the abuse (to control and manipulate) needs to stop, prophetic words need to be understood within the church, and why you should never agree to not talk about something that has happened to you.
It is Saturday, May 21, 2008 and that morning I received a vision from the Lord of myself on a tiny wooden boat and heard, “And the tiny boat was tossed.” The sea was dark and rumbling, but I was at peace with light shining down on me. I felt as though a storm was approaching but I will have peace…..It is now July 26th of the same year and I had received a directive and a word from the Lord that week. Our church was to begin a building campaign in the next few months and I was praying for this as directed by the pastors. The Lord told me three things at this time with a great amount of love:
After He told me those three things He requested I proclaim in the earth realm that the money wouldn’t come in. It took much but after He told me the last two things, I did as He requested.
I was to share with the pastors that the money wouldn’t come in. I was able to do so with the female pastor that Saturday night. I thought it was received well and that they would take it to the Lord. My husband, Bryan, had gone to a movie and I had driven home with our young sons. I received a phone call from the female pastor, frantically saying they needed to come over to our house right away. I told her Bryan was not home; but they still came. This is when things got ugly and horrible. First they were asking what they have done wrong, what sin they needed to repent of and I told them there wasn’t anything the Lord had said about that. I had felt the word had come from a place of love and protection. But it was like they didn’t hear what I was saying and continued trying to ask me what sin the church had committed. Then, I was accused of cursing the church and was Jezebel. I was told I must apologize to the pastoral team and what was then a pastoral prayer team members. The prayer team members did not even know what I was apologizing for just that I was to apologize. I was told by the pastoral team that we (the pastoral team, my husband and I) were never to talk about this with anyone. Later I had found out the pastoral team did not hesitate to talk about it with people and these people also shared some things with other people. So much for promises and keeping it to ourselves. I was in full fledge fear because 1) I was accused of cursing the church and 2) What if I did have Jezebel inside me?????.
God never intended us to submit
to spiritual leaders who are cruel,
hurtful or can not humble themselves
They are considered untrustworthy
I had many situations that came up during this time that would be termed as spiritual abuse. Shunning, hurtful words and actions by the pastoral staff, I was actually told they were surprised I showed up for events at the church, my own children were told to pray against me as I was the one “cursing” the church and I choose to stay, I took all the abuse and did what was asked of me; because I doubted God’s word to me and thought I had sinned horribly— so I deserved all of the harsh treatment; because at this point my viewpoint of God was off. I had learned in the church that they are the “authority over you” and “we are to submit to the authority over us”. Never realizing what the Greek actually meant in Hebrews 13, more explanation will be in another post. In a nutshell though– I truly believe that God never intended us to submit to spiritual authority that is hurtful, cruel and are unable to humble themselves to say they are sorry. They fully expect and require people “under them” to apologize for anything they deem needs an apology. People like this are not God’s leadership.
It is now three and a half years later and the money did not come in for the building campaign. Soon after the pledges were taken the economy nose dived and many people lost houses and jobs. The people could not make their monetary commitments they had written in August of 2008. No one on the pastoral team ever said a word about the word being accurate.
I knew the next three and a half years would be different and began praying for the building and the needed money to fund this venture. Remember I never said a word about the last 2/3 of the word. I had kept them to myself and my husband at the Lord’s directive. Sunday, June 1, 2014 the same female pastor met with me in between services because she had to share something with me she had said. We went into a back room and she had asked me, “Do you remember when you had to give that “hard word” back at (the name of the place we were worshipping at back six years ago).” I replied yes and she continued, “The Lord God Himself made you give the word because as a prophet, that was the only way to birth through me the prayer necessary to bring the building.” She never knew that she just confirmed the third promise the Lord gave me. And the second promise was that the building would be up that seventh year and it is.
I never did receive an apology, we were wrong, or you were right. Many leaders in the church are afraid of admitting they are wrong or saying sorry because of a crazy misconception that this will somehow lessen their leadership when instead it actually would increase it. It is wrong to think saying you are sorry in some way will cause them to lose their authority over you. I have talked a bit about this in Because of Christ, Believers in Him Are Seated in Heavenly Places. This kind of control is not of God, it is directly trying to control the prophetic gifting in the most hurtful and damaging way. Most of this occurred because the blind were leading the blind. I say that as Jesus said it about the Pharisees because like the Pharisees of Jesus’ time this pastoral staff’s viewpoints of God were and are still off. They do not see God as a loving Father but one that will turn away from you if you sin and you must grovel to have Him even be able to look at you and love you again. This doesn’t line up with the New Testament Covenant. I believe so much hurt has occurred in the church because of this incorrect view of God and it is time for this to change.
There has been a large movement saying that prophetic words should only be “good” not “negative” and this is unbalanced thinking. Mainly because we have defined “good” by man’s way of thinking not God’s. Prophetic words should bring life, hope, warning and DIRECTION. Here are the biblical examples that helped me hold it together waiting to see if this “word” would come true and prove I wasn’t crazy, Jezebel, cursing the church etc….
“One of them named Agabus stood up and began to indicate by the Spirit that there would certainly be a great famine all over the world. And this took place in the reign of Claudius.” Acts 11:28 NASB
“As we were staying there for some days, a prophet named Agabus came down from Judea. And coming to us, he took Paul’s belt and bound his own feet and hands, and said, “This is what the Holy Spirit says: ‘In this way the Jews at Jerusalem will bind the man who owns this belt and deliver him into the hands of the Gentiles.‘” When we had heard this, we as well as the local residents began begging him not to go up to Jerusalem. Then Paul answered, “What are you doing, weeping and breaking my heart? For I am ready not only to be bound, but even to die at Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus.” And since he would not be persuaded, we fell silent, remarking, “The will of the Lord be done!”” Acts 21:10-14 NASB
One was a corporate word and the other was a personal word. Both were warnings that would help give direction to the individual and to the large group of people. It was to let them know what would surely come; so they could make a plan, to decide, to have wisdom. This is were I see the church lacking because of the fear of a word that doesn’t fit into their “box of love”….while this surely fits into “God’s box of love”. It is time for the church to understand God’s love.
Agreeing “never talk about something again”, for the moment, looks good to the offender; yet it is not healthy. It is unhealthy to not be able to talk, process and walk all the emotions out in a safe place. When I was told never to talk about this situation it actually made things worse for me, not better. I needed to process out loud with people that had wisdom and loved me. What I have realized is that hiding something away doesn’t make it just disappear it makes it fester. And festering is toxic for our bodies. Do not agree to never talk about something again…talking is one of the ways God created for us to stay healthy, helpful, loving and bond as human beings.
This very thing that occurred, as one friend pointed out, helped create who I am today. This very story becomes the tapestry of my life which helps forge what God desires in and through me. I am sure it would have still happened without this occurring yet I might not have understood so many things such as: the Grace of God, being assured of Whose I am and who I am, not doubting God can truly turn ALL things around for our good, His amazing peace in spite of our circumstances, no longer wanting to please man, confident in the fact He loves me no matter what, my children understand spiritual abuse and can spot it a mile away, they are also confident in their stance with God, and I will never prostitute myself in the prophetic again.
Silence has never solved a problem
I am sure there are many of you with similar stories; actually I know of too many stories already that have occurred with these same pastors over multiple states. It breaks my heart that anyone would have to go through something like this. I also know these aren’t the only pastors that lead this way, as they have been taught to lead this way. If you want to share your story to heal and move forward please feel free to share below or on my Facebook page: Hisbelovedgrace4ever. I have set my comment settings so you can be anonymous when commenting below if you would rather. I am here to pray, read your story and will try to respond to your comments. With love, freedom and His beautiful grace, Darlene
For the rest of my story that got me where I am today you can read Ummmm…Is That An Elephant in the Room?!?!? and People Don’t Like Letting the Elephant Out, Questions Answered
I had made a meme…A Little of What… . This had been part of something the Lord had been telling me: "You are the pearl, be the pearl. You are the treasure, be the treasure. You are the coin, be the coin." One of the things I would have believed or interpreted from this statement in the past, because my view of God was off, is this:
"Darlene, shape up because you aren't behaving like you are one of My children."
Yet, this isn't what God was saying to me at all. What He is saying is:
When you believe you are pure, priceless and beloved by a Father in heaven it changes you. You can't help but be changed. Your whole mind shifts from a place of fear to a place faith. When we start to understand the fullness of what Christ did for us on the Cross: how fully forgiven we are, how beautiful and priceless we are, how greatly loved we are this in and of itself changes our perspective of ourselves and others. This alone is huge. Yet then God gives His gift the Holy Spirit, Himself to live within us. The closest we can get to Him this side of Heaven and that is amazing love.
Whose you are
Who you are
It isn't about your or my behavior when He says, "Be the pearl". It is all about seeing yourself as or believing you are the pearl, treasure and coin. This is called: "faith in what He did for you". That is the Kingdom of Heaven….be the pearl.
Matthew 13:44-45, Luke 15:8-10
As I have gone back and looked at some of my journals and the words God has given me I have realized how “off” my interpretation or understanding was of what He was trying to tell me; because I did not see Him clearly back then.
So the other morning this is what God and I were talking about:
In the prophetic it is imperative that we see God correctly. That our view is clear and we start at the right starting point. As believers, in Christ, we should be able to see God clearly for Who He is and what His Son has completed for us. When we know who we are and Whose we are the interpretation of the prophetic is on target. When we start at the wrong starting point, because we don’t know who we are or exactly Whose we are, our interpretation of the prophetic will be skewed or off.
We need to start off believing, having faith, that Christ has completed all that we never could, on our behalf, putting us in right standing with God for eternity. And as my mom said forever, or eternity, is a long time. ☺️. We are made righteous through Christ alone. As we begin at the right starting point with these truths we can begin to interpret what God is saying to us much more clearly. “For now we see obscurely in a mirror, but then it will be face to face. Now I know partly; then I will know fully, just as God has fully known me.” 1 Corinthians 13:12 CJB
If you believe you are prophetic, I would encourage you to read through my blogs and begin to undo what you may have been taught in the past of Who God is and begin to soak in Who God truly is and who you are in Him. As His sons and daughters we are to see Him clearly and you will be much more confident as you know to the depths of your being just how important and beloved you are to Him. ❤️
Gossip…that word you have probably heard taught in the church; if you have been in the church for any length of time or maybe you have been harshly accused of gossiping. I have actually never heard a sermon on gossip, maybe your experience is different, instead I would be accused of gossiping when it seemed convenient to someone. So never understanding what gossip is or isn't has had me confused so many times I just stopped talking. Being called a gossip, for me, is like being called a liar or a cheater and I don't like that. Plus I didn't want to hurt people. What I have found though is the word "GOSSIP" is used by many in the church to silence the TRUTH from being told. This is when, as believers, we begin walking on dangerous ground.
"Truth"…something Pilate himself was looking for. Something, as believers, we are to walk in, search for and be able to discern. Something I see many in the church not looking for; because they are afraid to be called a GOSSIP.
Today the Lord wants to bring clarity as He shared with me this statement:
Gossip is Slander
Simple, yet I believe so many in the church do not have a grasp on what gossip actually means in scripture in the Greek. This in turn lends to bad teaching that has led to people unwilling to search out the truth, ask questions, and live a life from the inside out, unafraid.
As believers, we are to walk in the light as Christ walked in the light (1 John 1:7). This is simply done by faith in Jesus Christ, trusting Him that He was enough of a sacrifice for the whole world. This leads to living from the inside out because we know He did what we could never do for ourselves and He is our righteousness. This trust leads us to lay in a place without fear of condemnation, punishment or separation from our Father in Heaven. We know Him to be Father not judge. From this place we can be honest, truthful and sincere because we have no fear of our Father in Heaven turning away from us. Now, truthfully, have you seen a church like this? Let alone maybe a person like this? They are few and far between because the church teaches performance, fear, and condemnation as the way, the truth and the light rather than Jesus as the Way, the Truth and the Light. See the latter is the Good News that Jesus wants told.
Once I realized the love of God, even after I accept His free gift, is not EVER based upon my performance I am able to live open, honest, and in the light with God and with people. The people part is difficult only because there are so many still afraid to live in the same manner because too many Christians still believe after they accept the free gift there are requirements to stay in "right standing with God". This is the FURTHEST from the truth.
The belief you must perform
to stay in "right standing with God"
is in direct opposition
to the TRUTH of the Good News
In actuality it is the opposite of the TRUTH of the Good News. AND what is even more interesting, this is similar to the meaning of GOSSIP–the opposite of truth regarding a person. Here let's take a look:
According to the Complete Jewish Bible (CJB) version the word gossip is used five times in the New Testament. It would be found in the following scriptures (in bold are the meanings of each word in Greek):
From these definitions I looked up a couple of words: calumniate and Prating. I am a stickler when defining a word not to use the word in the definition because it doesn't illuminate the word at all. So here is the definition to both words from dictionary.com:
CULUMNY: noun, plural calumnies.
1.a false and malicious statement designed to injure the reputation of someone or something:
The speech was considered a calumny of the administration.
2.the act of uttering calumnies; slander; defamation.
PRATING: intransitive verb 1:to talk long and idly
As you read through the definitions a few things becomes clear. First, there is a huge difference between how we define gossip today and the five Greek words used within the scriptures above. It is quite clear from above the Bible is defining someone who knowingly, maliciously and on purpose decides to malign, lie, and make empty charges against someone both openly and quietly; their whispering launches secret attacks to destroy another person's character; they choose to hurt, and destroy and to condemn a person's character; and they desire to sever a relationship by doing all of this. As you can see from above, this is a tactic of the enemy; hence the Greek word "diablos". The Greek word above translated as "Gossip" is someone who is a false accuser or an empty accuser (full of air just bubbling over) that does not want to bring unity but disunity, not life but death and not healing but destruction. Let's look at the original meaning of the word "gossip" in English from Merriam-Webster dictionary:
History for GOSSIP:
At first the word gossip, from Old English godsibb, meant “godparent.” Later it came to mean “close friend” as well. Close friends, of course, share secrets. Gossip has come to mean anyone, friend or not, who shares the secrets of others.
The word GOSSIP is NOT
found once in the KJV
So, interestingly enough, if you look up the word "GOSSIP" in the King James Version (Old English) you will not find one scripture with the word "gossip". There are zero results. We need to understand the meaning of the original Greek words translated as "gossip" if we are to judge the universe (1 Corinthians 6:2) and understand what was truly being talked about in the five scriptures referenced above. In the first letter to the believers in Corinth Paul is referencing a problem that came up between two believers and one took the other to court and he is asking,
"Don’t you know that God’s people are going to judge the universe? If you are going to judge the universe, are you incompetent to judge these minor matters?"….Can it be that there isn’t one person among you wise enough to be able to settle a dispute between brothers?"(1 Corinthians 6:2-5).
One of the many things we need to understand, as believers, is that we have the Holy Spirit within us and we should be able to discern the truth from a lie. But we must hear both sides of the story to be able to do so and then wait upon Holy Spirit to help us. Is one side gossip??? The real meaning of gossip??? Is it a fabrication to bring down an individual, and why would this individual need to be brought down? Is there something the enemy is trying to hide? Paul and the apostles ran into this time and again as they brought the Good News and the enemy did not want the Good News to be believed. So people would rise up and gossip (the real meaning) about the apostles in hopes the apostles would not be listened to.
As believers, we also must understand we need to be open, honest and truthful with what we experience. We should be able to talk about circumstances that are unhealthy and tell our side of the story without the fear of being called a "gossip". For far too long the church has covered up great harms done to others by calling the truth GOSSIP and that is an unhealthy trait. For it covers actions in darkness instead of bringing things to light to be dealt with in a loving, healthy way (Matthew 18). I believe this truly happens because we are too busy trying to perform holiness, as we think we should, instead of simply knowing we are holy because of what Christ did for us on the Cross.
No longer be afraid to speak the truth when asked, search out the truth when something doesn't sit right with you and judge the matters before you. For one day we shall judge the universe.
The age-old question…what came first the chicken or the egg? It is such a great question. For those of us that believe in creation by an all-powerful Creator than of course we answer the chicken. Remember in the beginning He formed all the animals out of the dirt (Genesis 1:24). Much like us who also were formed from dirt; yet we were given the image and the breath of God (Genesis 1:27 and Genesis 2:7). Amazing! So, here is a question what comes first grace or works? So many times I have heard or read about “tension” in the scripture. By this people mean: one verse says this but another verse seems to say a completely opposite statement. A while ago I posted a picture named, Tension; you can click there for the link to the picture.
I believe when we look at scripture we need to start at the right starting point. When we don’t start at the right starting point then of course we see opposing statements. When we do start at the right starting point then what we have seen as opposing statements actually flow congruent. Many times one scripture is pulled out against so many other scriptures and pointed out as an opposing scripture. What is amazing is it usually is trying to denigrate grace. One such scripture is James 2:17:
“Thus, faith by itself, unaccompanied by actions, is dead.”
Let’s read a little further into James 2:18:
“But someone will say that you have faith and I have actions. Show me this faith of yours without the actions, and I will show you my faith by my actions!”
The reason James is looked at is because it talks about behavior or works. People that try to throw the grace Jesus bought for us to the wind and try to say it is all about behavior. James here was talking to double-minded (Definition: (lit: of two souls, of two selves), double-mind-properly, “two souled”; (figuratively) “double-minded,” i.e. a person “split in half,” vacillating like a “spiritual schizophrenic.”) people. People that said they have spoken with their mouth Jesus is Lord and yet the outflow of their life showed something different. James makes certain points such as: a desire to treat poor people harshly and rich people well; not taking care of widows and orphans; or favoritism. James called this a vulgarity.
If you see tension in scripture, I believe, you are putting the cart before the horse or somewhere within your core beliefs you still have an area of law you are abiding by. Let me explain a little further. When we understand we are saved by grace alone that it was finished by Jesus the Christ on the Cross for the entire world to have the ability to choose the free gifts of grace–freedom from and power over sin; and salvation.
We are then able to start at the right starting point and will understand the works we do are a NATURAL OUTFLOW of our faith in the Christ which has allowed the Holy Spirit to dwell in us.
Works are a sign, the cart after the horse or the egg that comes from the chicken. It isn’t something you perform but how the Holy Spirit who has come to dwell in you performs as you abide in Jesus. If the works are the focal point then we have definitely put the cart before the horse. Our focal point needs to start at the truth of all God did through His Son on the Cross and in the Resurrection. Early believers understood this. It is time for the Church today to understand this as James said:
“Every good act of giving and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father who made the heavenly lights; with him there is neither variation nor darkness caused by turning.” James 1:17
Two core values, the place where I live from, are 1) God is good– no matter my circumstances and 2) Nothing can ever separate me from the love of God. I have not somehow produced this as my value, I simply don’t state that I have this value it has been given by God. Because this is a place I live from it becomes my starting point as I walk through life with Him in me. I believe as I have walked through life and tough circumstances have happened to me, family, friends these beliefs were formed in me by His hand…simply beautiful but also at times painful. Maybe this might be better explained by Molinos, a writer in the 1600’s. His books were burned all over Europe and if you were found with one of his books it meant automatic excommunication from the Church. His fate was to be put on trial, sealed up in a dungeon so his face could never to be seen again. It is told that while he was in the dungeon he repented and on that day the Pope declared a holiday and people partied in the streets celebrating his supposed repentance. He never left the dungeon though and died in 1696. Here is what he wrote about humility:
“True humility is an inward thing..It is an understanding so vast that no tongue can express it. From this revelation proceeds a glimpse of the grace of God….a grace which takes pleasure in encompassing that person with the pure goodness of God.” Pg 43
As you read this keep in mind two of my core beliefs. I wrote on Facebook a few days ago as I shared a memory from two years ago: We do skip death…I will be posting a blog on this soon….this was the biggest hope for Israel and it became true with Jesus…It is our perspective that needs to shift into our Father’s big plan and what salvation means. ❤ There is much hope!! Here is the memory I shared:
Today I am chewing on GOD LOVES ME NO MATTER WHAT. Look: Enoch by an act of faith skipped death, he pleased God. Paul goes on to say it is impossible to please God without faith. And then further, WHY? (Hebrews 11:5-6 MSG) Simply put, ALL you do is believe God is real and true (Jesus is my Lord and Savior) and KNOW that He LOVES YOU-unconditionally. Period. That is all. The love part is challenging because our filters, that we have been taught, of how we see God. Keep chewing on God loves me no matter what. This brings such great pleasure to our Father in heaven. 💜
When I had re-read this memory and some of the comments immediately the Lord told me you do skip death. And I was like, “Huh???!!!” That is when He said Darlene go look up the word “death” associated with this passage in Hebrews…..so I did. Here is what it means directly from biblehub.com:
2288 thánatos (derived from 2348 /thnḗskō, “to die”) – physical or spiritual death; (figuratively) separation from the life (salvation) of God forever by dying without first experiencing death to self to receive His gift of salvation.
Again a commonality to the word salvation from my earlier post It’s an Inside Job, separation from the life (salvation) and receiving His gift of salvation. Again let’s look at the definition of salvation from the same source:
Cognate: 4991 sōtēría (from 4982 /sṓzō, “to save, rescue”) – salvation, i.e. God’s rescue which delivers believers out of destruction and into His safety. See 4982 (sōzō).
4982 sṓzō (from sōs, “safe, rescued”) – properly, deliver out of danger and into safety; used principally of God rescuing believers from the penalty and power of sin – and into His provisions (safety). [4982 (sṓzō) is the root of: 4990 /sōtḗr (“Savior”), 4991 /sōtēría (“salvation”) and the adjectival form, 4992 /sōtḗrion (what is “saved/rescued from destruction and brought into divine safety”).]
Please note the root of sózō is sōs….SOS. The well-known code to ask for rescue. Amazing!! Anyhow, how does God’s big plan, SOS and death all come together? Let me first start with what I believed salvation to be before. For me it meant I was saved and not going to hell. I believed in Jesus and that meant I was saved from eternal damnation. As I grew in my Christian faith I heard arguments of whether or not you could “lose your salvation or not”. Yet still what does this encompass and what did the early believers have or understand that we at times seem to be missing. Here is one example the Lord keeps pressing me with:
Maybe this is only me but I know of others who have viewed it the same way. Have you ever looked at your life or others lives and because of their circumstances thought oh they aren’t blessed or I am not as blessed as them because of this situation in my life i.e.: sickness, children, lack of children or something you would think as negatory?? I know I have. I have thought in the past okay my life is going well I am in favor with God…and when it isn’t going well…oh I must not be in favor with God. This is incorrect when we are no longer under the law and under grace. This actual thinking allows the enemy to have you running in circles many times chasing something down that no longer has an impact in your life. This is wrong thinking because if we believe this way we are actually saying to all those Christians who were put to death at the Colosseum we would have to say they are less blessed than those who were not. We would even have to go so far to say Peter was less blessed than John since he ended being martyred and John on the other hand survived so many ways of trying to kill him. (John 21:18-23)
I know this is a tough subject but I wanted to share what I feel the Lord has been showing me in Romans 8-10 regarding this subject. See when we think this way we are saying to the potter: we, being mere clay, why did you make me this way? Instead we must look at His larger picture, His larger plan and know that His will is perfect. He keeps telling me Darlene you just play your small bit part in connection with Me. Does this mean my life is perfect, No certainly not! We still live in a world that is moaning for its redemption or the return of the King of kings!! Does this mean I do not believe in healing, No certainly not! Or other miracles, no certainly not. But ultimately my faith does not lie in those things it lies in Jesus. Because of faith Enoch skipped death and Abraham was made righteous and now because Jesus died we have approval from God, the righteous One and because Jesus rose from the dead we have been freed from the power and penalty of sin and removed from destruction into God’s safety/provision. We have life eternal. The early Christians, I believe, looked past their present circumstances and didn’t judge their worthiness to God by what they faced; but by Who they believed in. I desire the church, the believers of today to do the same. To note their worthiness in what God did for them not in their present circumstances.
What we need to understand is that speaking our faith, trust belief in Who Jesus is and in our hearts have faith trust and believe that Jesus rose from the dead…it speaks of Who He is the first fruits. That we skip death, the real death–the separation from life (salvation-God’s promises and provisions). Yes our bodies will die the first death yet it is like opening a door to pass through it.
Above and beyond everything, I believe, God’s interest lies in the desire for all to know Him. He will go to extreme measures for His one lost sheep. Didn’t He for you? He certainly did for me. And as people, Christians we play our part in this tapestry called God’s plan and somehow it isn’t always comfortable. Yet, through that discomfort comes great and good things if we set our eyes on that. This isn’t easy, yet I believe this is a place God wants us to have balance in. Let’s look at this in scripture.
“Now what if God, even though he was quite willing to demonstrate his anger and make known his power, patiently put up with people who deserved punishment and were ripe for destruction? What if he did this in order to make known the riches of his glory to those who are the objects of his mercy, whom he prepared in advance for glory — that is, to us, whom he called not only from among the Jews but also from among the Gentiles?” Romans (Rom) 9:22-24 CJB
The whole plan with Pharoah up until the time of Jesus had been a plan for God to show his glory to us, those living during Jesus’ time till now. All the people, all the things that happened were ultimately to show His Glory. Jesus spoke to this in John 21. See Peter was told exactly how he would die and approximately when and why he would die that particular death. Peter was told it was for His Glory. I don’t know if I could know this, could you? Yet, it was obviously with purpose. Peter though asked about John and this is what Jesus said:
“If I want him to stay on until I come, what is it to you? You, follow me!”” John 21:22
In the midst of my circumstances, friends circumstances and my life…I simply follow Him knowing I have my bit part to play to bring Him Glory in the way He desires me to. He is the potter and I am mere clay. I know He has the best for me and for others, no matter what their current circumstances are and that He loves, loves, loves us. Pharoah made a choice because God hardened his heart so that the whole world will know His Name. Yet I know Pharoah got a choice whether or not to follow Jesus. See my faith has healed me. My faith in Jesus has healed me, given me peace (shalom), taken all my sin, given me power over sin, given me eternal life, put me into God’s safety and given me God’s provision. This is the place I live from while also understanding my life will not always look the way I think it should; but God will bring goodness out of it. All I have to do is look at the many who walked before me….the Christians martyred. It is with great purpose we individually live and with great purpose each individual impacts history and the tapestry of God’s larger plan. I am assured we have exactly what we need in the time we need it to bring God glory and to let those around us know the riches of His glory.
A few nights ago, I had three dreams in a row. Each dream held a similar thread. In the last dream the thread was very clear. I had been on a sidewalk in a city looking up at a beautiful building that had a display window jutting out from a balcony. It looked amazing and beautiful. All of a sudden I was flying above the buildings and I could see the same display but from above. In the display was a tree that had a trunk but no branches or leaves and from the tree trunk I saw spider webs that crossed the expanse of the display to other items in the display. I was shocked and said to myself, “This isn’t the way it looked from below!” Then I heard a voice say, “Remember, things aren’t always as they appear”.
I think this is just a simple reminder to me and His church, His Beloved. I wrote a post on Correcting Perspective (click on link to read) and in this post, among others, I v
discuss seeing God for Who He is and starting there. When we start with the correct perspective whether we are looking at issues in our life, world or at God we are more able to see these issues or God so much more clearly.
In my dreams I was able to not only see from the angle everyone else saw the display but also from the angle God wanted me to see the display. I just sense God reminding Christians to let Him change your perspectives, ask Him to give you the right starting point. He will; but you may need to take a 180 degree turn (repentance) and let go of starting points or core values you really didn’t know you had until you come face to Face with Him at this time. This repentance naturally happens in this circumstance, God changes the way you see. I just feel like right now is a special time for a new starting point, for core values to be changed as we simply ask. God always works on a timeline within our lives. Knowing exactly when we need something and exactly when we are ready for it. I just sense this time is here for many people.
In my dream things were multidimensional just like God and just like the issues we face in our lives. In my dreams things that appeared to look beautiful from my position were not what they seemed and the desire to not look further, not to want to see, to prefer to stay with the way I first saw the display tugged at me….yet the reminder rang loud and clear…Things aren’t always as they appear.
“So if you’re serious about living this new resurrection life with Christ, act like it. Pursue the things over which Christ presides. Don’t shuffle along, eyes to the ground, absorbed with the things right in front of you. Look up, and be alert to what is going on around Christ—that’s where the action is. See things from his perspective.”
Colossians 3:1-2 MSG (emphasis mine)
If at anytime you are reading scripture from the starting point, ” If I will….then God will….”then you are starting from the viewpoint of the Old Covenant and trying to fulfill the law. I used to do this all the time, but not any more, thank God. When Jesus came, He died on the Cross and He rose again, this changed history and created a New Covenant free gift offered to all people. This covenant is similar to what He did for Abraham, but a million times better, in that it is a covenant of faith where God did and Abraham received because Abraham simply believed in Who God is and this belief was accounted to him as RIGHTEOUSNESS. Today, in the New Covenant, we, as believers, are under GRACE not law. So, when we read scripture it is imperative we start at the right starting point. In the New Covenant we start with: Jesus did it all for all time. Jesus bore all my sin, shame, sickness, disease on the Cross. He fully took my place and the whole worlds place on the Cross. He took the entire bulk of punishment upon His own body for all time and for all people. As believers in Jesus, we have the astounding privilege to be part of His family and fully understand that God, through His Son has done everything for us and all we do is receive. There are no strings attached to this. As a believer in Christ there is absolutely nothing you could ever do to lose it (except deny Who Jesus is; but then He is chasing after you). There is absolutely nothing you have to do; but just believe in Who God is and what Jesus did for you. As it says in 1 John 1:5-10:
“This is the message we have heard from Him and announce to you, that God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with Him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth; but if we walk in the Light as He Himself is in the Light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from ALL sin. If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from ALL unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar and His word is not in us.” NASB
Let’s look at this through New Covenant eyes: If we declare that we are sinners, that we truly need a Savior we are immediately walking in the Light with Jesus, we are cleansed from ALL sin. We just need to confess which means: “to acknowledge belief in”. What are we acknowledging belief in? The fact that we were all born into sin because of Adam and we are in need of saving. Once we acknowledge this and believe that Christ died for us to be free from this sin nature, we are forgiven and cleansed from ALL unrighteousness. Which means we are a new creation and fully righteous in Christ Jesus (2 Corinthians 5:17&21). The New Covenant is that simple. You do not need to perform for God to stay in the Kingdom of Heaven because Jesus already has performed it all. Do you need to keep confessing your “sin” so you can stay in good terms with God???–No, because we have already acknowledged that fact when we had faith or believed in Who Jesus was and Christ’s act with our faith, acknowledgement and acceptance of that free gift is what makes us on good terms with God; because the payment was paid in full by His Son for us. All of our iniquity, transgressions, and sin was nailed to the Cross for ALL time and were are righteous in Christ Jesus. So, I challenge you to read the scripture above with the realization: this was written for non-believers to help them enter into the Truth of Who Jesus is and all that He did for them. Next I also challenge you to read it from the right starting point: God through His Son finished it all for you and has done everything for you…now receive the Holy Spirit and enter into His rest as Hebrews 4:10 says:
“For the one who has entered His rest has himself also rested from his works, as God did from His.” NASB.
This is the message of the New Covenant, the message of Grace. The true gospel of Jesus Christ.
If you want to understand more about transgression, iniquity and sin read: Horizontal and Vertical (Part 4)