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Propelled Into The Next Level

It has been a great to joy to sit back and watch how God has used Katie to take over most of the encouragement this year.  With what God is speaking now, I felt it necessary to share this encouragement that will help propel you to the next level in your relationship with God.

Are you in a place of weary waiting?  Have you stood on the promises of God and cried out for so long and nothing seems to happen?  Do you desire a change of circumstances? Are you desperate for doors to be opened? Are you hungry for new power to be released?

Do you desire to be propelled to the next level?!?!

Many may not receive this as a word of encouragement.  Most will ignore it and continue in the same old way of life. Some will accept it as truth, but few will take this word of encouragement and put it into practice and be powerfully propelled into new levels with the Lord.

The principle I am going to speak of was followed by every major player in both the Old and New Testament. Moses, David, Elisha, Peter, Paul, John and so many more all followed this principle and were propelled into new levels of power when they did.  It seems strange in knowing all this that anyone who truly follows Christ would be unwilling to participate in this practice.  It is never easy for any of us to deny our flesh and follow in the footsteps of Christ.  However, obedience will rocket us into the exponential increase that we all desire. 

For those who truly desire to follow in the footsteps of Jesus, let us hear what He has to say about this great power available for all who partake in it.

Matthew 6:16 “…when you fast…”  

What did He say?  Is that in red? Did Jesus actually say the “F” word?  Why didn’t He say IF you fast”? Isn’t fasting just an option for true extremists?

How many of you have been in church for years and never heard anything about fasting?  Obviously, this verse must be taken out of context or some obscure part that no one ever reads.  I am sorry to say that this is right in the middle of probably the most famous sermon of all time “The Sermon on the Mount”.  From this discourse we get, “The Beatitudes”, “The Lord’s Prayer”, “Love your enemies”, and many of the other more famous words of Jesus.

You can read the context for yourself in Matthew 6, but here is a quick refresher.

Matthew 6:3-4But when you give, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, that your giving may be in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will Himself reward you openly.”

“When you give” is a passage that probably comes up regularly during offering time in the church. Here, the Father rewards the giving that is done out of a right heart.  Nobody would deny these words of Jesus as being essential to growth in the Lord.

Matthew 6:6 “…when you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly.”

Here is another widely known passage that is followed by the Model Prayer.  Everyone would affirm that it is necessary to pray and learn how to pray more and better to proceed in your walk with God.  The Father who sees these prayers will reward you for the time spent praying and crying out to Him.

The passage from Matthew 6:16-18 continues in the same parallel repeating twice, “…when you fast…”. The thought is completed as verse 18 ends your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly.”

Surely Jesus would not put fasting on the same level as giving and praying in the essential steps to being propelled into the next level in The Kingdom.  Whenever I bring up this topic, people groan and look at me like some sort of alien. “I like food too much”, or “that is too hard,” or “you are crazy”, are some of the common responses that I have received just by bringing up one or two verses as I have mentioned above.  I encourage you to study fasting throughout the New and Old Testament and see the great men that walked it out and what they gained as a lifestyle of fasting with prayer out of a right heart.

img_6674.jpgIf nothing else, Jesus Himself left us the perfect example. After Jesus’ baptism in Matthew 3, He was led by The Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. This was the time of testing that would prove who Jesus really was.  What did Jesus do to prepare and continue to stand strong in the midst of the greatest onslaught of the enemy? At the beginning of Matthew 4, we see plainly that Jesus fasted forty days. He gave up the worldly way of gaining strength and power and took up the spiritual empowerment of fasting and prayer.  Because of this, He was ready for all the enemy had to throw at Him.

Later in Matthew 17:20-21, prayer and fasting come up again as a dynamite combination that allows the impossible to be accomplished through your life.  So many of us want a secret formula that will help us overcome the enemy, or the secret weapon that will destroy the enemies’ hold on our lives. Here it is:

I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you.  However, this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting.

If you need more incentive here are just some of the benefits of fasting and praying with the right heart:

  1. Corporate Freedom (The Salvation of a City) Jonah 3:1-10

Here an entire city, over 120,000 are saved because of repentance, fasting and prayer

2.  The Healing of the Land2 Chronicles 7:13-14

If you study it out, the main outward expression of humbling yourself before God is fasting.

3. To Influence Government and Save a PeopleEsther 4:16-17

Esther, Mordecai, and the Jewish people fasted and prayed and God brought deliverance.

4. Personal Freedom and BreakthroughIsaiah 58

This is probably the best place to view many of the numerous blessings of fasting and prayer out of a right heart.

5. Empowerment of the AngelicDaniel 9:3-4, 20-21

6. Opening of the Eyes to Spiritual RealmDaniel 10:2-11, Acts 10:30

7. Gaining UnderstandingDaniel 9:3-10:12

There are many more benefits and blessings that can be found throughout Scripture if you care to study the topic further.

Before I end, I want to give a few simple definitions of fasting.

Lou Engle states “Fasting and prayer is designed to humble yourself, reveal your flesh, and purify your worship“.

David Hogan says “Fasting is a good way to get hungry“.

A personal definition that I have come up with is giving up a legitimate pleasure as a sacrifice to gain breakthrough and a deepening relationship with the Lord.  We do this because we love Jesus, and He is worth it!

I want to encourage you to begin cultivating a lifestyle of prayer and fasting into your Christian walk.  Every new level in my personal life has been marked by a new commitment to prayer, fasting, and spending time in The Word.

THIS IS YOUR INVITATION TO INCREASE!!!

From Monday, August 26th – Friday, October 4th God has called me to consecrate a 40 day fast for several reasons not the least of which is Revival and souls for The Kingdom.  I encourage you to fast one, two, or all of the three major areas that we are controlled by:

  1. Food
  2. Media
  3. Sleep

Allow God to lead you into the next level of fasting that you may be propelled into the next level with Him.

A word of advice when fasting food more than three days, please study the right way not only to fast but also to break a fast. Often the world understands the health benefits of fasting better than Christians understand the spiritual benefits. Because of this, there are many websites that can aid in fasting and breaking extended fasts.

If you would like to carry on further study here are the three best books I have found on prayer and fasting;

  1. The Atomic Power with God thru Fasting and Prayer by Franklin Hall
  2. Shaping History through Prayer and Fasting by Derek Prince
  3. The Jesus Fast by Lou Engle

May the Lord truly bless you as you prepare to be propelled into the next level with Him.  Always remember:

Hebrews 11:6 “…He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.”

May you receive the fullness of The Great Rewarder!!!

Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!

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Call to Go (Southeast Asia)

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I remember now why I do not take showers in the morning in Asia. The bone-chilling cold water should be reserved for after sweating all day in the heat. However, I am truly awake now as I write this.  This is just one of the few things when God has called us to go, we must give up to say yes.

Your will, your way, your wants and desires are always difficult to give up. “I want it my way.” You may not ever say it out loud, but this is the way you are. I know this, because this is the way I am.  Graciously, the Lord granted me several confirmations that this was a trip I was supposed to be on. I do not often get such clear direction and continually receive confirmation I am supposed to go. I usually just give Him my Yes out of faith.

After the 30+ hours of travel, I can say thank the Lord for giving me the ability to say Yes. Sitting on a plane for any extended amount of time is physically uncomfortable, to put it mildly. However, for me, it has always been hard to sleep so it becomes that much more difficult. But none of this matters because I have said Yes to Jesus and His call for me to go. Unfamiliar places, faces, food, accommodations… None of this really matters for I have given my whole-hearted Yes to Jesus and His way.  

The people here are worth it because He loves them. Even more than that, He is worth it and I love Him!!! Right now, in your life, what is of the greatest value? What do you love the most? What would you hold on to if everything else was stripped away? What if God called you to give that up to Go for Him?  Could you do it? 

My prayer for you is that you hear the call of the Lord to Go and that you say as Isaiah did, “Here I am, send Me!!! No matter the cost, no matter the price I will follow You and say Yes!!!” Jesus is worth flying to the other side of the world and giving up so much! In the same way, He is worth it to lay down your fear, pride, selfishness, to walk next door, up the street, down the fruit aisle… Or wherever else He may have you. He is worth it to give all that You have to speak His good news!!! He gave first, and He gave His best for you.

What do you have to give the Creator of the Universe??? 

I give You my, Yes and my obedience!!! Here I am!!! Send Me!!!

Isaiah 6:8 Then I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for Us?” Then I said, “Here am I. Send me!” 

Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!

Unbreakable!!!

Daily Encouragement –

How solid are you? Do you feel like you are being tossed back and forth in this crazy life? Do you waver to and fro because of the situations around you? 

I am the tried and true firm foundation!!! I am immovable! I am the cornerstone and anything of value must be built upon Me or it will fail and fall! 

There are so many things in the world that seem sure, but when they are the foundation, they will fail and fall. Love is not a good foundation for a marriage. Neither is profit the best starting place for a business. I must be the foundation and cornerstone for all you do. I desire for you to become immovable and unbreakable in Me!!!

Come to Me! Strengthen your ties to the firm foundation and see all the blessings and benefits that flow to you. I love you My child!!!

Isaiah 28:15-16 “… For we have made lies our refuge, And under falsehood we have hidden ourselves.” 16 Therefore thus says the Lord God: “Behold, I lay in Zion a stone for a foundation, A tried stone, a precious cornerstone, a sure foundation; Whoever believes will not act hastily.”

Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!

Come and Dwell

Daily Encouragement –

What do you take pride in? What do you consider your greatest accomplishment? What can you do to become great?

Here I am! I am the creator and commander of all the hosts of heaven and earth! I know the right way to go and have your purpose lined up. Come to Me first, and I will show you the best way! Love Me with everything you are and you will be truly great! 

Your pride and your accomplishments are nothing compared to My power and great vastness. You may seem great, but all I am and have is far greater. I have storehouses waiting to be opened and bless those who dwell before Me. Will you come and dwell with Me? 

Seek Me! Love Me! This is how you will be truly great! This is where I am waiting to provide all your needs! I love you My child!!!

Isaiah 23:9 “The Lord of hosts has purposed it, To bring to dishonor the pride of all glory, To bring into contempt all the honorable of the earth.”

V. 18 “Her gain and her pay will be set apart for the Lord; it will not be treasured nor laid up, for her gain will be for those who dwell before the Lord, to eat sufficiently, and for fine clothing.”

Matthew 6:33 “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.”

Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!

Master of Eternal Destiny

Daily Encouragement – 

Who are you really? How do you present yourself to others? Are you the master of your own destiny? How is that working out for you? 

I am the Lord your Maker! I have created you and allow you to exist! I am the Master of your perfect destiny! Anything you try to do in your own strength is, at best, temporarily satisfying. I have made you for specific plans and purposes, and you can never be truly happy until you are walking in your perfect destiny. 

You will never know, walk in, or be able to continue in the way unless you come and know Me!!! Come to Me! Know Me! Be obedient to all I am calling you to. My way is not only the best way, it is the blessed way, and the only way to walk into your eternal destiny!!! This is My desire for you. 

Come to Me and let’s walk together into your eternal destiny! I love you My child!!!

Isaiah 22:11-13 “…you did not look to its Maker, Nor did you have respect for Him who fashioned it long ago. 
12 And in that day the Lord God of hosts Called for weeping and for mourning, For baldness and for girding with sackcloth. 
13 But instead, joy and gladness, Slaying oxen and killing sheep, Eating meat and drinking wine: “Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die!”

Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!

Prideful Opinion or Humble Trust?

Daily Encouragement –

What’s your opinion? What do you think? How much do you value yourself over Me and My word? 

Everyone has a thought or opinion about serious ( and even non-serious) matters, and most of the time you never have to ask for them. Pride and selfishness will raise their ugly heads and let you know what they think about whatever it is rather quickly. The hard part is learning to listen and trust Me over these two demons! Pride makes you think your way is the best no matter what it may be. Selfishness causes you to desire whatever is best or looks best to you. 

Cut these off at the roots and come to Me with humility. My ways are higher than your ways! Come to Me with trust knowing that I have your eternally best interests concerning all things. 

Come to Me! Trust Me! Follow Me! Love Me in all you do! This journey is worth it, and it will take a lifetime to complete. I love you My child!!!

Jeremiah 43:2-4 “…all the proud men spoke, saying to Jeremiah, “You speak falsely! The Lord our God has not sent you to say, ‘Do not go to Egypt to dwell there.’ 3 But Baruch the son of Neriah has set you against us, to deliver us into the hand of the Chaldeans, that they may put us to death or carry us away captive to Babylon.” 4 So Johanan the son of Kareah, all the captains of the forces, and all the people would not obey the voice of the Lord…”

Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!

Get to the Heart of the Matter

Daily Encouragement-

Are you ready to listen and obey? Are you quick to carry out what I say? How have you handled My word in the past?

I know your heart! I know how much you trust your own intellect, feelings, and fears. When you come to Me and say you will be quick to obey all I have said to you, you mean it. However, you trust yourself more than Me. Whether you are trying to convince yourself or just say what you think I want to hear, I know your heart. 

Come to Me! Let Me do a work on and in your heart. Allow Me to transform your intellect into trust, your feelings into faith, and your fears into new love for Me. 

All that I have for you is The Best! Walk with Me and be transformed into the Best in Me!!! I love you My child!!!

Jeremiah 42:6 “Whether it is pleasing or displeasing, we will obey the voice of the Lord our God to whom we send you, that it may be well with us when we obey the voice of the Lord our God.”

Vs. 20-21 “For you were hypocrites in your hearts when you sent me to the Lord your God, saying, ‘Pray for us to the Lord our God, and according to all that the Lord your God says, so declare to us and we will do it.’ 21 And I have this day declared it to you, but you have not obeyed the voice of the Lordyour God, or anything which He has sent you by me.

Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!