Tag Archives: sleep

Press In and Press Through Till There’s Breakthrough: A Call to Fast and Pray!

Early yesterday morning as I sat in prayer and to seek the Lord, He began to speak to me. For me, one of the biggest ways that He speaks to me is when I submit myself to His leading and His voice, by putting pen to paper. Yesterday was no different.

I felt such a strong pressing of this word and of it’s imperative timely status in the spirit. A kairos moment is upon us! I very much sensed that in the days leading up to Pentecost on June 9, that Father is bringing forth from Heaven a slim window of opportunity to the Body of Christ to see promises revealed transform into promises fulfilled. This has become increasingly apparent to me in the past few weeks and the urgency of the hour at hand is increasing as well.

This is what He said:

“NOW IS THE TIME in which the windows of Heaven are open and My blessings are being released in great proportion. NOW IS THE TIME in which My angelic messengers are carrying forth into the earth promises longed for, hoped for, prayed for, and warred for. There is an opened access door into the storehouses of Heaven to deliver that which was once blocked of release.

BEWARE of a slumbering presence that seeks to hinder the release and to stall the revealing! It seeks to blind and conceal with darkness, the revelation of divine release.

I tell you truly, IF you will commit to set your gaze, focus, and sights upon My Kingdom in this hour, THEN  I will bring into you that which has been promised. I will send warring angels on your behalf to bring deliverance and divine release.

DARE TO DREAM BIG WITH ME!

DO NOT LET slumber fall to your eyelids lest you remain blinded and fail to receive that which is coming on the clouds!

STAY AWAKE AND STAY UP WITH ME!!!

Circle your promises and keep circling them until I give the signal for every demonic delay to come toppling down; yes, crumbling down!!!”

Beloved, we MUST NOT allow this moment to pass us by! We must not be like those who in Jesus’ day, dwelt among THE ANSWER to every prophecy they had held onto for hundreds of years; and yet, they were completely blinded to the reality that their Savior stood right in front of them. Even His own disciples, His closest friends, doubted His resurrected existence as He stood among them.

It is time to strip off all unbelief, all doubt, all fear and complacency, every lie, and every deception that would blind us to His Presence and His activity in the earth at this moment and in the time to come!

I must share that something interesting occurred as I received this message from the Lord. The spirit of slumber attempted to overtake me. One could say, “Well, you had four hours of sleep! Of course that would happen!” I don’t disagree. However, this time was different. I was wide awake at 4:30 to seek Jesus and it was not until He began to release this word that I sensed the onslaught of this spirit. I discerned it’s presence and I warred for the Word, though my eyelids be heavy. To my husband, it probably would’ve been the gentlest of warring that he’s seen from me; not noticeable, even.

I believe something natural in the Kingdom of Heaven took place. Because I had submitted myself to Him to seek and receive, He fought for me. Because He saw my hunger and longing, He slayed the giants opposing me. I will say, most of, if not all of the word I received was written down with my eyes closed as I rested in He, Who fights my battles. He began to expose that which sought to hinder the release of the word was indeed, the ‘slumbering presence’ in which He spoke of.

As I dwelled on this word, He reminded me of a prophetic declaration and song that came forth from my lips two days ago, “Press in, and press through till there’s breakthrough!” 

He then led me back to the Gospel accounts I studied last week from Jesus’ encounter with His disciples, Peter, James, and John in the Garden of Gethsemane, just before He was betrayed by Judas and led to His crucifixion. I was wrecked last week of His interaction with His closest friends in their last moments together. He chose them to join Him in praying, for the hour was urgent to seek God.

Mark 14:33-35 says, “An intense feeling of great horror plunged His soul into deep sorrow and agony. And He said to them, ‘My heart is overwhelmed with anguish and crushed with grief. It feels as though I’m dying. STAY HERE AND KEEP WATCH WITH ME.’ He walked a short distance away, and being overcome with grief, He threw Himself facedown on the ground. He prayed that if it were possible, He would not have to experience this hour of suffering.Verse 37-38 says, Then He came back to His three disciples and found them all sound asleep. He awakened Peter and said to him, ‘Simon, are you asleep? Do you lack the strength to stay awake with Me for EVEN JUST AN HOURKeep alert and pray that you’ll be spared from this time of testing. For your spirit is eager enough, but your humanity is feeble.'”

They couldn’t stay awake for even ONE HOUR! Why?!?!?!?! 

photofy (1)

Photo: N/A

He did this three times, going off to pray in agony as though He were dying. Three times He returned to find His closest friends asleep. I believe He placed a test before them of their devotion to Him through any trial that may come. He chose them specifically to join Him in His secret place; however this time, they joined Him in what was probably the sole dark night of the soul in His life. I believe it was perhaps similar to Elijah’s test of Elisha in 2 Kings 2. Elisha prevailed in this test and not only saw His father taken into Heaven, but also received a double portion of Elijah’s mantle because he refused to depart from his father and was determined to receive what his Father had.

However, I do not believe the disciples passed Jesus’ test. They did not refuse to depart from Him in this moment where He obviously was like they had never seen Him be. They remained where they were and allowed Him to go on in solitude to cry out to God for relief from the cup He was to drink of. What if when He said, “STAY HERE AND KEEP WATCH WITH ME”, that it was actually a command to abide with Him and an invitation to join Him in His suffering? Luke 22:43-44 say that He called for an angel of glory to come and strengthen Him.” Would that have been necessary if they had joined Him?

Verses 39-42 state, “Then He left them a second time and went to pray the same thing. Afterward, He came back to the disciples and found them sound asleep, FOR THEY COULDN’T KEEP THEIR EYES OPEN AND THEY DIDN’T KNOW WHAT TO SAY TO HIM. After praying for the third time, He returned to His disciples and awoke them again, saying, ‘Do you plan on sleeping and resting indefinitely? THAT’S ENOUGH SLEEP! THE END HAS COME AND THE HOUR HAS ARRIVED for the Son of Man to be handed over to the authority of sinful men. Get up and let’s go. DON’T YOU SEE? My betrayer draws near.'”

THEY COULDN’T KEEP THEIR EYES OPEN AND THEY DIDN’T KNOW WHAT TO SAY TO HIM. 

What came upon them and overtook them so greatly that they literally COULD NOT keep their eyes open and keep watch with Him and had no answer for Him as to why? I believe that it was the same slumbering spirit that Father spoke of in the message He gave me. It seeks to blind in darkness, the vision and provision of Heaven. The word for “keep watch” and “see” literally means, “to see in the spirit”. Jesus was not telling them to watch with their natural eyes, but to keep watch and guard with their spirit eyes. If it is allowed to operate, then it will block what is being released from Heaven to earth.

photofy

Photo: N/A

I believe that in this hour, Jesus is calling His Bride to band together, stand together, and contend together through a season of intense and intentional prayer, fasting, and seeking. There are promises that have been pent up and blocked from release but His promise is that if we will seek Him in these ways, that He will send His angels to remove the barriers that the release may come.

I truly believe that we are in a brief Daniel 10 moment of time. Just as Daniel set his face to pray and fast for the release of revelation of the vision, WE TOO, MUST SEIZE THIS MOMENT WITH ACTION! I believe that just as with Daniel, if we do this, we will be met by the same glowing man to dispatch angels of deliverance. He is Jesus.

Per the urging of the Lord, I am calling a 40-day fast beginning tomorrow, May 1st until Pentecost Sunday, June 9th. I strongly urge you to join me! If you have been contending for miracles, healing, salvations, promises, deliverance; NOW IS THE TIME!!! Just as He met His faithful ones who remained through the release of Holy Spirit and fire on Pentecost, I believe that He is bringing forth the same in this hour!!!

Katie, Pure Fire of Yahweh

Advertisements

Salvation Through a Babe

Night before last, I was deeply grieved to learn that the state of New York had achieved a ‘new height’. On Tuesday, on the 46th anniversary of the passing of Roe v. Wade, the legislation that legalized abortion across the United States, much of New York was in celebration for the set to pass Reproductive Health Act, a bill legalizing abortion all the way up until birth. It ‘removes abortion from the definition of homicide and from the penal code completely.’ This means that anyone who causes harm to or the death of an unborn baby cannot face capital punishment. There also would no longer be restrictions on who can perform abortions.

21af72a2ec1cde06c858c207b8e4b85f

One World Trade Center boasting pink in celebration of the Reproductive Health Act.

The governor of New York has pressed hard for abortion until birth and even after; he has said there is no place for ‘extreme conservatives’ in the state.

To bring reality to this bill if reality hasn’t already set in, let me put a few faces to this bill…
These are the faces of one they say is deserving of a death sentence. It is atrociously unfathomable that anyone would think they deserved to die simply for living their days in the darkness of my womb, being knit together perfectly by the hand of their loving Father. No matter the gestation age, Father was and is knitting together a precious gift when He places a child within our womb. They have a destiny and purpose, as does every single life, every child placed within the womb of their mother. These very lives, every life, is worth fighting for.

img_8854-e1548365786452.jpg

Our oldest son, Azariah, not long after his birth four years ago this year.

img_8851.jpg

Our youngest son, Elam, right after his birth almost two years ago.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When reading his statement at the end of the article tagged above, the Lord began to impress upon me HIS Truth and speak to me regarding Cuomo’s statement, and I’m sure the statement of many across the U.S. He led me to Isaiah 45:11-12 (TPT): “Listen to what Yahweh, the Holy One of Israel, the One who shaped him, has to say: ‘Why do you question Me about the destiny of My children or tell Me what to do with My children and what I have made? I created the earth and populated it with people. With My own hands, I spread out the cosmos and then commanded the starry host to shine!'”

Isaiah 45:9-11 (MSG):
“But doom to you who fight your Maker—you’re a pot at odds with the potter! Does clay talk back to the potter: ‘What are you doing? What clumsy fingers!’ Would a sperm say to a father, ‘Who gave you permission to use me to make a baby?’ Or a fetus to a mother, ‘Why have you cooped me up in this belly?’ Thus God, the Holy of Israel, Israel’s Maker, says: ‘Do you question who or what I’m making? Are you telling Me what I can or cannot do? I made earth, and I created man and woman to live on it.'”

I was overwhelmed by Holy Spirit when reading this passage and then He brought me to verse 8 before it, Isaiah 45:8 (TPT): “Shower down righteousness, O heavens above. Let the clouds drip with deliverance! Let earth’s womb open and bear salvation’s fruit, with righteousness rising up beside it! I, Yahweh, have created all of them!”

The Lord began to bring to mind the word that He spoke for this year that you can find here: 2019: It’s All About Righteousness. I then heard Him say: On the heels of RIGHTEOUSNESS RESTORED, the heavens will DRIP WITH DELIVERANCE. A great travail will GIVE BIRTH TO THE FRUIT OF SALVATION in the land. A METAMORPHOSIS will take place and RIGHTEOUSNESS will be the marking point unto salvation. A CONVERGENCE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS AND LIFE WILL BUILD A COHESIVE FOUNDATION FOR REVIVAL TO EMERGE.

 

 

img_8852-e1548365478871.jpg

Photo: N/A

Ephesians 5:13-14 (TPT)
“Whatever the revelation-light exposes, it will also correct, and everything that reveals truth is light to the soul. This is why the Scripture says, ‘Arise, you sleeper! Rise up from the dead and the Anointed One will shine His light into you!’”

We must be a woke people to recognize our need for righteousness, deliverance, and salvation. The Spirit of Wisdom and Revelation shatters all deception, corrects and renews mindsets. If we are sleeping in apathy, complacency, and silence, God views us as if we are dead. It is time for the Light of Jesus to shine upon us and wake us up from the dead! 

Isaiah 45:20-25 (TPT)
“Come together! Assemble yourselves! Draw near, you refugees from among the nations. Those who parade their powerless wooden idols have no revelation knowledge. They keep on praying to gods who cannot save them. Declare what is to be and state your case. Go ahead and take counsel together. Who knew all about this and declared it long ago? Was it not I, Yahweh? There is no god apart from Me. I am a righteous God and a Savior. There is no one you can compare to Me. So turn your heart to Me, face Me now, and be saved wherever you are, even from the ends of the earth, for I alone am God, and there is no other. I make this solemn oath to you in My own name; this word sent forth from My mouth in righteousness will not return unfulfilled: ‘Truly every knee will bow before Me and every tongue will solemnly swear allegiance to Me!’ All will say of Me, ‘Yes! Only in Yahweh do I find righteousness and strength!’ And all who were angry with Me will come before Me and regret it! In Yahweh, all of Israel’s offspring will triumph and shine!”

God is not shocked or surprised by this death decree and sentencing. He knew it from the beginning. He is calling us forth with an invitation to AWAKEN, ASSEMBLE, REPENT, AND ARISE AS ADVOCATES UNTO ACTION!!!

He then led me to Isaiah 9:2 (TPT): “Those who walked in darkness have seen a radiant light shining upon them. They once lived in the shadows of death, but now a glorious light has dawned!”

wallpaper-151356.jpg

Photo: NASA

Let the reality of what Isaiah said sink in. We’re looking at a nation of people walking in deep darkness. In Isaiah 8:20-22, the Lord says, “Listen to the teaching and instruction of the Lord! If their speech does not line up with His Word, they will have no light of dawn.” He goes on to say that they will wander in lack and become famished. In response they will be enraged and curse their king and Lord. Whether in the heavens or earth, they will find only despair, darkness, and fearful gloom, and be thrust into obscure darkness. I would say that the state of our nation greatly resembles this picture. However, Isaiah begins to prophesy THE DELIVERER for the people:

Isaiah 9:6-7 (TPT)
“A child has been born to us; a Son has been given to us. The responsibility of complete dominion (government) will rest on His shoulders, and His name will be: The Wonderful One! The Extraordinary Strategist! The Mighty God! The Father of Eternity! The Prince of Peace! Great and vast is His dominion. He will bring immeasurable peace and prosperity. He will rule on David’s throne and over David’s kingdom to establish and uphold it by promoting justice and righteousness from this time forward and forevermore. The marvelous passion that the Lord Yahweh, Commander of Angel Armies, has for His people will ensure that it is finished!”

As Isaiah prophesied THE HOPE FOR SALVATION, I prophesy out of the deepest cry of my spirit:
Those walking in darkness have SEEN A GREAT LIGHT! The Light of Jesus is ripping through the darkness and shattering the gloom and doom cloud of death on a nation and generation! No longer will the blood-red stain of the murder of the innocent mark this nation for judgement; for a divine revelation of righteousness will be the drawback in preparation for the mass waves of deliverance to come. The only blood we will see is the cleansing blood of Jesus rolling across America from coast to coast; bringing cleansing in it’s crests! I decree and declare that just as the shift from judgement to divine justice took place when the first breath of life was expelled from a babe, a Savior, King Jesus, wrapped in cloth; so will divine justice break forth like the dawn with the breath of a generation who will never know the reality of genocide. The darkness of deception was obliterated the very moment that our Savior entered this world, The Son was born. When the blood of Jesus comes as a red wave to wash America white as snow, we will see LIFE burst forth from the rays of the dawn and ecstatic JOY will emanate in the heavens. It will be said across all the land, “Look at this great harvest of LIFE!
The Lord says, “Soon I will raise My hand and signal to the nations, and they will come with your little boys bundled in their arms and your little daughters carried on their shoulders. Kings will be their babysitters and queens their nursing mothers. I will fight those who fight you, I Myself will save your children. I will cause your enemies to feast on their own flesh and drink rivers of their own blood. Then you and all the world will know that I am Yahweh, your Savior and Redeemer, and I will never disappoint those who entwine their hearts with Mine.”

I have seen a variety of responses to the heart-breaking news and the majority of the responses are centered around the debauchery of New York (much like we’ve seen with California, etc.); and how many wouldn’t want to be living there right now for the judgement that is coming.

img_8859.jpg

Photo: singh_lens

David saw a heavenly exchange between Father and Jesus in Psalm 2:7-9 (NLT): “The king proclaims the Lord’s decree: The Lord said to me, ‘You are my son. Today I have become Your Father. Only ask, and I will give You the nations as Your inheritance, the whole earth as Your possession. You will break them with an iron rod and smash them like clay pots.’” 

Knowing the responses and reflecting upon it and the truth of Psalm 2, I leave you with this truth and charge:

It is easy to allow apathy and complacency to take hold when it comes to news of regions outside of our own, outside of our own reality. However, I will challenge you in that your mindset might need to change. Yes, it’s possible that New York may not be where you are stationed right now and the judgement of God will always come upon a people in opposition to His Word. Make no mistake, the choices of one person, one city, one state absolutely directly affects you; as does the judgement that comes. Instead of disowning the state and people for their choices, we must realize that we cannot outrun the fallout. It is our responsibility as those who call ourselves ‘sons and daughters’ to take ownership of the actions of our nation and people, especially for those who refuse to do so. The judgement of God will fall upon this nation as a whole; with the outcome of the judgement being up to us.

We can either choose to mentally and emotionally neuter ourselves from what is set before us and suffer the consequences as an entire nation; or we can join God in what He wants to come from this: A divine awakening of sons and daughters that will stand up to the enemy operating in the unseen realm and fall to our knees in repentance on behalf of our country and people. Jeremiah and I have chosen to take God’s Word as our own and to live by it. When He said to only ask and He will give us the nations as our inheritance, the ends of the earth, our possession; we have taken Him at His word. Joshua 1:3 says wherever we set foot, He will give the land to us as an inheritance. This also means that wherever you point yourself to, He will give it to you. We personally have walked the streets of New York in intense prayer and spiritual warfare for the land five years ago when we began our faith journey. New York is a gateway city and the enemy is hard-pressed in war over it. We have pointed our faces and prayers to New York AND walked its land, and we REFUSE TO ALLOW THE ENEMY TO GAIN POSSESSION OF THIS GATEWAY, OF OUR INHERITANCE!!! WE WILL FIGHT UNTIL WE SEE THE HEAD OF HAMAN ROLL ACROSS THE GROUND AND HIS DEATH DECREE REVERSED!!!

I challenge you to AWAKE, ASSEMBLE, REPENT, AND ARISE TO ACTION on the behalf of the state, people, and nation! This is our mission: 

Ephesians 5:8-9 (TPT)
“Once your life was full of sin’s darkness, but now you have the very light of our Lord shining through you because of your union with Him. Your mission is to live as children flooded with His revelation-light! And the supernatural fruits of His light will be seen in you—goodness, righteousness, and truth. Then you will learn to choose what is beautiful to our Lord.”

In the next day or two, I will share a word from the Lord specifically about what actions we are to take and what He is doing.

Katie, Pure Fire of Yahweh

Call to Go (Southeast Asia)

IMG_3013

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!!!

Complete Restoration

Daily Encouragement –

Do you need a little R&R? A little rest? A little relaxation? Do you desire a renewal? A restoration in body and mind?

True renewal and restoration can only come from Me! I made you and know what you need. You need more than an abundance of sleep and relaxation. You need your very soul restored. 

Come to Me! Return to Me! I am The Water of Life! I am able to renew and restore you over and over again! The things of this world can never truly satisfy or restore. These things will leave you wasted and wanting more. 

I want to fill you completely with all of My power, glory, and life so it overflows continually out of you. Come to Me over and over again, and I will fill you completely and continually!!! I love you My child!

Lamentations 5:21 “Turn us back to You, O Lord, and we will be restored; Renew our days as of old”

Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!

Press In to Press On

Belize Day 6 –
Emerging from our shelter we were greeted with an unfamiliar sight.  Trees as large as houses were strewn everywhere. Branches and leaves had been stripped from the trees and scattered on every inch of the ground.  With the welcome morning light, this is what our eyes came upon.  A new world lay before us, somehow similar to the old, but oh so different.
13876686_10210794493317821_8071969261472013854_n
Some of us got to work cleaning up immediately and others went off to sleep in their beds and make sure their rooms were not torn apart.  We had a lot of things get wet in our room and some leaves had blown in, but besides that not much trouble.  The power being out is inconvenient for a lot of people, but just another effect of the storm. We worked all morning to pile branches and leaves. Sometime during the night, Santi had forgotten to move his vehicle to a safe place and it had been partially crushed by a monstrous tree.  The highlight of the morning was when we were finally able to get the tree off the truck and see that it was dented and had some broken windows but was still usable.
32
13895417_1249608081718899_8603314979275502150_n
Our next task was to clear the downed power lines so that we could get them repaired. Along, the way, we repaired the horse pen while many continued to stack the seemingly endless supply of broken branches and downed trees.  By lunch, most were exhausted and I had to sleep for a few hours.  After a quick nap, I got back to work until dinner when I found out that Sarah was apparently suffering from heat exhaustion and lack of sleep.  I know she worked just as hard as, if not harder than, the majority of the guys and never took a break for water or anything.  She was paying for it. Heidi and I went and prayed for her, and we saw an immediate improvement.  We sat around for about an hour around a candle talking and finally turned in for the night.  This has become a rather interesting real mission trip that most people were unprepared for.
Interestingly, a day or two before I left for Belize, God had spoken something to me during my prayer time.  I was praying and preparing spiritually for the trip and got a strange impression.  It was not even what I would call a word, but I felt as if this mission would be more than what we knew or expected and that we may not come back when we planned on it.  I know now that it was God, but then I had this feeling that this trip was going to be bigger than anyone expected and that something was going to happen that no one planned on or prepared for.  Like I said, it was not clear enough for me to tell the leaders, but it was this nagging thought.  I was unsure of what to expect or if I was just being silly, but I made plans in the physical to have everything taken care of in case I did not come back when I thought I would.
Now, I know that was a word from the Lord.  I doubt any of us would have gone if we had known that we would be in the middle of a hurricane.  However, God was preparing me even before the trip for unexpected things that would take place.  Even on my 28th mission trip, God is still giving me adventure and allowing me to experience something I had never done before and may never do again, endure through a hurricane.
Devotion – 
These are difficult times that we all live in.  God has chosen you to live at this time and He gives you everything that you need to succeed.  The more troubling things that are around you, the closer you need to get to Him!
 Press into Him and He will give you the ability to press on no matter the lack of sleep, uncomfortable conditions, pain, or whatever you may be going through.  
Interestingly, God revealed to me something that I never really could have known or been prepared for, experiencing a hurricane, during my time with Him.  I was close to Him even before the hard times came, and because of this, He was able to prepare me for the unknown hard times to come so that I was ready to endure when the time came.  This demonstrates how important it is to press into Him during the easy times as well as the difficult. 
Challenge – 
Today, ask God to help you to come closer to Him than ever before.  As you do this, look for the encouragement, strength, and life that will come as a result of deepening devotion and intimacy with Him!!!
Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!

Prayer and Fasting

Simple Discipleship

This is the fourth message in the series: Simple Discipleship.

We have already discussed, Being a Leader/Disciple, Intimacy/Love of God, Worship and Sacrifice.

Here is what we will be studying for next week:

Holy Spirit/Power of God

Scriptures for Study: 1 Sam 10:1-13, Joel 2:28-32, John 16:5-15, Acts 1:4-14, 2:1-11, 1 Cor 2:9-16.

Here are my Notes: Simple Discipleship Week 4

Here is the Audio Sermon: Prayer and Fasting

fasting and prayer

As we begin to look at prayer and fasting, we must first ask two important questions:

What is Prayer?

What is Fasting?

In studying this topic, my definition of prayer would be inviting God into our lives and situations by bringing things to Him.  

We are encouraged to pray without ceasing.  We are not supposed to go around with our eyes closed and heads bowed all the time, but wherever we go and whatever we are doing, we are to be in constant communication with God inviting Him into our situations and surroundings and making Him a part of our everyday activities.

In coming to understand more about it, my definition of fasting is giving up legitimate pleasures as a sacrifice to gain breakthrough and a deepening relationship with the Lord.  

God has given us necessary things, and it is the blessing of the Lord to us for them to be good.  However, in talking about sacrifice, we saw that we were to give up something important to us to gain a deeper relationship with God.  Fasting is a sacrifice of something that we  enjoy (Food, Entertainment, Sleep…) so that we get breakthrough and walk into a deeper communion with the Lord.

Fasting always works together with prayer.  Everywhere that fasting is mentioned it is in combination with prayer.  Fasting without prayer is just dieting.  The point of fasting is to give up a legitimate pleasure and use the extra time that we have to spend praying.

fasting

In Daniel 10, in is clearly evident that as Daniel was praying and fasting, he was empowering God’s spiritual forces to bring about change.  Something happens as we fast in conjunction with prayer that empowers heavenly forces to win spiritual battles.  As a result of this, Daniel was strengthened, encouraged, and given answers that he was seeking.  You have the ability to empower heavenly forces to win spiritual victories through fasting and prayer!!!

In Isaiah 58, it is even more evident that fasting with the wrong motives and wrong heart is no good and not even accepted by God.  As we fast, God brings revelation to us and we then have the choice whether to repent and be obedient or to ignore the revelation.  When we ignore what God is saying, our fasting and praying is not powerful or effective but our hearts become increasingly hardened to the voice of God.  Fasting and prayer is powerful when we repent and walk in obedience to the revelation of the Lord.

Look at a few of the benefits of the right type of fasting and praying from v. 12.  God is able to build where there was once destruction.  The enemy is constantly trying to bring destruction in our lives, but through fasting and prayer, God is able to build something that lasts on top of this destruction.  God strengthens our foundations, revitalizes our spiritual heritage for us to pass on in greater measures to our children, fortifies our defenses and clarifies our paths.  This is the kind of fasting and prayer that I want to be a part of!!!

prayer

In Matthew 6, we come to find the importance of not being religious.  In regards to both prayer and fasting, Jesus mentions the secret place.  The thoughts and intentions of our heart is what God judges so we should never do these things out of obligation or for other people to be proud of us.  We should have a genuine desire to grow closer to the Lord and out of that heart in the secret place, God is able to give spiritual treasures.  I would rather be rewarded by God rather than men any day!!!  

It is also important to realize that the prayer and fasting that we do right now affects eternity.  When we are in heaven, there will be no need to pray or fast because we will be partying with Jesus face to face.  Right now, we have the unique ability to affect eternity with our pure prayer and holy fasting!!!

In Habakkuk 2, we find out that it does not matter how you pray, but that you are actually communicating with God.  The prophet says clearly that he was waiting to be corrected.  Habakkuk’s prayers would raw and filled with emotion.  He did not come with proper words and civilized emotions.  He came as he was and expressed himself honestly and was willing to repent and be corrected.  

We also find the importance of prophetic revelation or vision.  Revelation from God gives us tiny glimpses into our God-sized destiny and this compels us to align ourselves with Him and move more into it.  As we write these things down, it is an encouragement to us when it takes longer to get here than we want (which is 99.99% of the time), an encouragement to others when it does finally come about, and a testimony to the glory and faithfulness of God.

The most important lesson from Mark 9 and Matthew 17 is that in the middle of our hopeless situations that we do not feel as if we can pray or have the faith to pray for complete deliverance and healing, we pray for the grace to overcome our doubt and for God to strengthen our faith.

I encourage you to pray and ask Holy Spirit to bring revelation as you meditate on these questions:

What am I praying for right now?

What are the things I have given up praying for?

Is my secret place worthy of being rewarded?

What has God revealed and called me to that I am not being obedient or repentant to?

What legitimate pleasure am I willing to give up that I might receive a spiritual breakthrough in myself and the lives of others and be launched into a deeper communion with the Lord?

fat and pray

I pray even now that God would give us all hungry hearts to know Him in deeper and mightier ways than ever before.  Help us all to repent of the things which you reveal in our hearts and surrender to walk in full obedience to what He is calling us to.  May our secret places be worthy of reward, and may God bring forth mighty spiritual rewards because of our faithfulness and perseverance in the secret place.

I would like to encourage you to pray and give something up in fasting so that you are able to step into a deeper walk with the Lord and that greater spiritual breakthrough would come in your life!!!

Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!

 

 

Worship and Sacrifice

Simple Discipleship

This is the third week is the Simple Discipleship series.  Here are the first two messages in this series.

  1. Being a Leader/Disicple
  2. Intimacy/Love of God

Here is the topic of study for next week:

Worship and Sacrifice

  • My notes can be found here: Simple Discipleship Week 3
  • Here is the Audio Teaching from Feb 17, 2016: http://lwcburleson.sermon.net/main/main/20609931

men-raise-hands-to-worship-God

As we begin learning about Worship and Sacrifice, we must first ask ourselves,

What is Worship?  

What is Sacrifice?

If we do not have a proper understanding of these things, then as we discuss them, we will never come to a true understanding.  My prayer is that as we investigate the scriptures, that we will understand even more the meaning of these and how we can apply them to our lives.

Worship – Honoring and lifting high another as higher than yourself out of a heart of love in response to God’s word, act, or nature.

Sacrifice – Giving up completely something that is greatly important to you for the benefit of another because you love them.

Here, I am talking specifically of the worshiping God, but we worship and lift high so many things that are undeserving.  Food, sleep, money, fashion, entertainment, sports, people, can all be worshiped in spite of not being worth it.  In this one statement, you may be feeling judged and your toes may feel stepped on, but this is the reality of the matter in my life as well as the lives of so many others.

We have a struggle in the morning when our alarms go off whether we will rise and spend time with the Lord worshiping Him or worship the god of sleep that is so seductive especially when it comes time to make the decision.  I could go on and on about each one of these, but every time we choose these things over obedience to God and love for Him, we are worshiping them and lifting them high as the important things in our lives.

Worship

In 2 Chronicles 21, we come to learn that we worship God when we accept His word and are obedient without doubting or questioning what He says.  Jehosophat had no direct command of God to put His worshipers on the front lines.  They did it out of an act of obedience and thus worshiped God by being obedient and trusting in the word of God.

In Genesis 22, Abraham is called to sacrifice his son that God had just revealed was the son of promise.  Abraham trusted God in such a way that as they went to the mountain in Vs. 5 Abraham says we go to worship.  Abraham’s heart of sacrifice is a true act of worship to God.  He was willing to give whatever God asked in obedience out of his great love for Him.

In John 4,

What Jesus mean to worship God in Spirit and truth?

  • God wants a constant communion with you in the day to day.  He does not want you to worship Him in a church or at your house only, but in the Spirit everywhere you go in every situation that you are in.
  • God wants you to be honest with Him.  You cannot fool God.  He sees the thoughts and intentions of your heart.  If you are giving Him something small and seemingly mediocre out of a good heart, it is greater worship than giving the very most you have out of a wrong heart. (1 Cor 13:3)

In Malachi 1, God desires our very best.  If we bring God half-hearted worship out of duty, these things are not pure and holy and actually dishonor and disrespect God.  He would rather no one worship than to have duty-filled worship out of grudging hearts.  He wants pure and holy worship that is a true witness to who He is.  This only comes when we are giving God our best out of a willing and loving heart.

In 2 Samuel 24, David reveals that God is blessed by our sacrifice more than he is blessed by our excess.  We see this concept over and over throughout the Bible that when we give God something valuable to us, that is true worship.  Those giving because they have extra does not impress God.  Jesus states this in a different way when talking of the widow in Mark 12:41-44. God desires our pure and holy sacrifice so He can bless us with better than our very best!!!

men-raise-hands-to-worship-God

Finally, in Luke 7, a “sinner” probably a prostitute comes in to the middle of the pastors and elders of their day.  She humbles herself completely to the judgmental and critical thoughts and stares and worships Jesus.  This “sinner”  sacrificed more and gave more in worship than anyone else around.  Because of her sacrifice and true heart of worship, her sins are forgiven, and she is saved.  She was forgiven much and so loved much.  The fact that she loved much caused her to sacrifice her most valuable possession and her pride as an act of worship to Jesus.

Does you love cause you to sacrifice your pride and valuables in worship to the Lord? 

Nothing I have spoken is out of judgment or condemnation, but Holy Spirit has even convicted me in studying these things.  Our love for God will always lead us to a true worship which is displayed in what we are willing to sacrifice for our True Love.

Ask Holy Spirit these questions and be obedient in what He is speaking:

Are you giving your very best to God?  This is true worship.

What is God calling you to sacrifice to love Him and worship Him in a deeper way?

worship1

May you be blessed with knowing more of the Love of God than ever before, and may you receive the fullness of the blessing that comes through true worship and sacrifice.

Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!