I AM the Righteousness of God

 

Righteousness

Paul and I were talking and praying through some things this morning. He had a prayer sheet with a list of things to declare and start your day with – lots of I am statements that he copied from Al Mack’s timeline. Some of these statements got me thinking.

We all have learned that praying the Word back is a great thing to do. Our words have power and when we declare these things out loud, things happen and heaven moves. Paul likes to say, “The Kingdom is voice-activated” and he’s right. Our words do activate the spirit realm around us.

While going through the prayer points and declarations I kept thinking about how much every one of these requires faith and trust if we are to believe them. For example, how can I know I’m a new creation in Christ if I don’t have faith in that if I don’t trust that the Word is true?

Even though I was praying along while Paul was reading these out loud, I kept having more and more thoughts along the lines of how much faith it took to really believe what I was saying. Was it true, did I really believe what I was saying and praying; or was this just a mantra of ritualistic words that I was familiar with? Did I really believe this in my entire being or was this simply head knowledge?

After a few minutes we got to the statement, I am the righteousness of God in Jesus Christ (2 Cor 5:21) and my thoughts suddenly stopped. I realized that this was true – not just in my head but down in my very being, through and through. I believed it because I have faith in the other things He has said and it takes faith in every step and every statement to come to a place where I could emphatically state these things as truth. They weren’t empty statement or just words on a page.

I began to repeat some of the “I am” statements with the knowledge, with the faith of the truth that they revealed.

I am righteous because I am a doer of the word.

I am a joint-heir with Christ because I am righteous

I am holy because I’m a new creation in Christ. . .

I was realizing, deep inside and not just in my head, that I am these things and whether I’m feeling it or not, I am complete in Him. I lack nothing and I am far from oppression. Fear is simply a lie that I cannot afford to entertain.

Knowing this makes me able to walk in peace and joy no matter what the world throws at me. And, no matter what tragedies and difficulties that are around me I can remain in my identity and be of some use when needed. How in the world can I influence or help anyone if I don’t even know who I am?  I can’t, at least not for the good. And who needs influence if it’s bad? No one!

It comes down to identity. Reading these statements again this morning made me realize that I actually believe them all. My faith has grown and it encompasses all the vastness He says about who I am.

A few years ago, that wasn’t the case. I used to read things like this all the time but, I only read them believing they were wonderful but not actually about me. Today the epiphany was, I am all of these things and the peace I can enter into and not have to ever leave is the fruit of that. Today the truth that has been in my heart finally reached my head! Understanding has arrived.

Time to exhale.

Photo credit ~ Aaron Burden (https://stocksnap.io/photo/MCC6WG6ZN5)

 

Advertisements

Changing the Atmosphere

Atmosphere changers

We are Atmosphere changers!

We affect the atmosphere we inhabit. Atmosphere changers do just that – they change the atmosphere, for good or bad.

The last couple of days I’ve been thinking about how my attitudes and stances affect those around me. (In the world we live in, “around me” can mean physically or even social media – basically any place I have influence whether positive or negative.)

What am I bringing to the conversation when I comment on someone’s post or reply to someone’s question? Do I come into agreement with negativity and join in the pity party? Or do I consciously turn the conversation to seeing the goodness in things and maybe bringing hope where none was perceived before? Do I encourage them to see things from another perspective, or do I simply agree with all the despair?

If someone is experiencing goodness and joy already, do I want to bring them down to my level because I’m having a bad day? Both of these instances will change the atmosphere. So, am I problem focused or am I seeing blessings all around me?

Sometimes I think we (I) need to stop and think about how our attitudes affect those around us.

We are not an island – our attitudes and stances touch others and can have more of an effect than we realize. If I have a bad attitude, my stance will be rigid and I will not be moved to any sort of compassion. My words will be few and maybe even harsh – and sadly history shows that I won’t even care, at least in that moment. Is this what I want to bring into a room? Is this how I encourage others?

Hardly

I encourage others to do better and be a better person by managing myself first. I will never forget the Danny Silk quote, I can’t control anyone; I can only control myself, and then only on a good day! The “control” he’s referring to has to do with influence. If I’m under control, self-control, and my attitudes love and peaceful, I will have a tremendous effect on those I encounter.

You know if you’ve ever flown in an airplane, the flight attendant always tells you that if the plane loses cabin pressure, put your own mask on first. That way you will still be breathing and be able to help others around you. This is managing us first.

I have to be conscious of what change I will bring to the atmosphere. If I’m not in a place to bring a good shift, I need to walk away and go deal with myself; maybe even a time-out if necessary. (smile)

If I am focused on blessings and the goodness all around me, I can affect someone else’s attitude and perspective simply by allowing what’s in me to pour out on them. How cool is that? This is what I desire and I pray will be more and more prominent in my life.

From this place of contemplation, I would like to encourage us all to give thought to our words; to proactively bring hope and encouragement when we walk into a room, (physically or cyberly.) I would also encourage us to check our attitudes in how we deal with people and issues we may not agree with at the moment. (There’s always room for us ALL to grow and learn more.)

Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be called the children of God. This is the atmosphere we are bringing to bear.

Try talking about your blessings more than your problems ~ Toby Mac #speaklife ~ It makes the atmosphere around you much more pleasant. No, seriously….

Photo credit ~ https://stocksnap.io/photo/4KMRMHQIJD

 

Speak the word only…

Speak the word only

Romans 4:17

‘…even God, who gives life to the dead and calls into being that which does not exist.”

Words have impact and power in our lives…

We all confess this to be true, but do we really believe it, do our lives reflect it? What about our prayers; are they prayers filled with item after item of what is wrong with a situation, begging God to hear our prayers and fix everything?

What about those words we choose when we speak to God, do they not have impact and power? (Positively or negatively)

Let me tell you a story that pertains to all of these questions.

Several years ago, our daughter left for college to start the next journey in her life. She wasn’t saved, she was fairly rebellious and as typical of many her age (18), she was into the usual things – drinking and drugs. While she was engaging in the things of college life, Paul and I were having house parties and house church here at home.

One evening during one of these meetings we were going around the room praying for each other’s needs. When it came time for Paul, someone asked about our daughter; how was she? Was she any “better”, had the prayers had an effect? Paul said no and began to remind everyone about Chelsea and how she was such a prodigal – smoking, drinking and doing drugs. Then he began to pray that these things would stop and that she would come to know Jesus when God suddenly interrupted him and said, “When are you going to quit telling me what the problem is and start telling me what the solution is?” Paul was a little bit startled at that, to say the least. He asked God, “You want me to lie?”

Needless to say, our prayers did change to something more like a declaration than a plea. We began to speak the solution over our daughter every day, multiple times a day.

When someone asked how she was doing, we would say, “She’s saved, healed, drug-free and serving the Lord!” (At first, we would then say, “In Jesus name” lol, you know…to make it legal.) 😉

In exactly 2 months after changing our prayers and confessions, this is exactly what happened. She did get saved and all the addictions went away at the same time with God’s “one-step” program.

So it really is true like the Centurion said, “Speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed.” And we, like this Centurion who was attributed with greater faith than anyone in all of Israel, are called to speak those things into being that is the Truth.

The truth is, our daughter was a righteous woman, she was addiction free and she was serving the Lord – in the future. All we did was bring the future into the now with our words. We are co-creators with our Father in heaven. Our life and our words should reflect that. He gave us all power and all authority to do the things He did and more! Didn’t Jesus heal the Centurion’s servant? And since He obviously did heal, isn’t that something we are able to do? His words healed the servant and the officer knew that was all it would take.

Who are our words healing?

Whose destiny are we bringing into today with our words and declarations?

Our inheritance is riding on it. We are to be calling out destinies and futures to our loved ones and guess what? They don’t even have to know about it. We never told our daughter we were calling out her destiny. It wasn’t against her free will, it was about her future and her hope – she just didn’t know it yet.

Let’s make our prayers effectual and powerful. Let’s speak those things that are not (yet) as though they were! Let’s begin to speak of our “situations” as if they were already resolved!

Rambling Thoughts Coalescing Into Words

Autumn meet me at the table

 

6-9-15

So, I’m supposed to be writing more, as in every day!  I feel like I should be spending an hour at the bare minimum developing my ‘craft’, aka writing, even though I’m not exactly sure what that means.

Since I’m really working on being a good student, I am here sitting at my desk trying to not be distracted by the view out my windows so I can do this thing called writing. Also, I’m trying to shut out the voices that are laughing at me and saying, “Who do you think you are? You’re not a writer! You’re wasting your time. No one will read anything you have to say.” Shut up voices.

Whether anyone ever reads a single sentence I write, I am going through with this.  I will never write anything if I don’t make time to do it or practicing the doing. So, here goes……

See look; three short paragraphs already! Woo Hoo, what a rock star I am! Okay, just kidding. I obviously don’t have a clue what to write about today but still it doesn’t matter. I know if I keep going, something will come out of it. A coherent thought will finally land and then I will expound on it. Yeah! That’s the ticket.

One recent thing I’ve done is finish reading Stephen Kings book, On Writing, a Memoir of the Craft. I read a great review of it by Steve (not Stephen) Bremner and afterwards, I was intrigued. So much so, I went out and got my own Kindle copy; it turns out that Steve was right. There were so many nuggets in that book to help me on my journey. Tucked inside the book are nuggets about whether to plot or not to plot, (sorry), adjectives and why they should die, tips about the 1st draft vs. the 2nd draft. All right there for the taking.

I’m so glad I did read this book. Whether I ever write a book, fiction or otherwise, I have gleaned much from it.  I’m optimistic that there is even more in there that is waiting for me to discover. Yes, I do realize I’m being vague but I’m not here to tell you bit by bit what you need to know. I’m actually here to tell you that it’s in there and this is to be considered an invitation or maybe a treasure map that has a great big X on it marking where the treasure is. It says you are here X, and the treasure is here X. Come and get it!

6-23-15

It’s obvious by the above date that some time has elapsed since writing the first part of this. And it might also be obvious that I didn’t exactly write for an hour each day. It’s okay because I’m writing now. Or am I? Is it writing if I simply type out the things that are running through my head? I believe it may well be. (Smile)

Note: Apparently I didn’t have much running through my head. But then again, between these two dates, I did have a birthday, I did bake lots of orders and I did work many hours at Ziggy’s.

I believe I need to start using the voice recorder on my phone to write down thoughts because I’m almost always driving when I have ideas about what to blog about or just things to write down. Probably should…..

7/4/15 (Happy Birthday America)

I’ve been thinking about social media lately and how in the last 8 or so years it’s changed my life, and the lives of many other people also; for the good and the bad.  While on Facebook I got to minister to and encourage many people that I knew and many that I didn’t even know I was even speaking to until sometime later. I began to come out of my shell more and more as boldness was being established in me. Yes, I do know that many people are a lot more brave or bold on social media and say a lot more on social media than they ever would if someone was actually standing in the same room with them. Oh, I know that indeed, and it’s not always good.

But that’s not what I’m talking about in reference to my boldness at all. What I’m talking about is the boldness to think I might have something to say that someone else may need. I started to write out experiences that I had had and things I had learned. My introvert-ism began turning into an ambivert-ism (as a friend calls it.) I wasn’t transformed into an extravert but I was no longer an introvert so the term ambivert fits pretty well. I could step into which ever type of vert  was needed for the situation and still keep it real and not something contrived to ‘fit in’ with the social media crowd I happened to be engaging with at the time.

So that was a pretty cool thing I got from social media. Another was all the people I’ve met and come to know and love over the years. Wow! It’s amazing how you really can form lasting relationships with people whom you’ve never physically met in your life. I’ve been blessed to have quite a few of these relationships and feel honored that these people would call me friend.

But what got me thinking about social media and how it’s changed me over the last several years was a conversation I was having with someone who was over for an intercessory meeting last week. We got to talking about Facebook in general and of course the recent Supreme Court decision also came up and all the craziness happing on any and all social media. And the craziness wasn’t just on Facebook; it was everywhere, no matter where you turned. I for one had no clue what was going on other than simply being aware of the Court’s decision. I had left FB back at the first of the year and gone over to MeWe, which was apparently not experiencing any of the same reactions from believers or non-believers. (That is, at least among my contacts, etc.)

The person I was conversing with, like many others, had never heard of MeWe. I went in to my usual ad campaign for the sight, espousing all the great things about it, like no ads, we own the content, not the other way around and how peaceful and quiet in general it is. I told her that one of my favorite features was the ability to actually use my voice to speak a comment or post. I was talking about how cool it is to actually use the power of your words, in the audible sense to pray for someone and to let that sound reverberate over them as opposed to simply typing out words to my prayers.

While talking about the power of my words it got me thinking………

We are so used to typing our words via text, emails, inboxing/private messaging and status updates that I wonder if this is something the enemy uses to steal some of the power of our words or prayers? Is all this non-verbal communication something that is so prevalent and normal in our culture that we have stopped using our audible voices and the power behind them? I know that I love to talk to someone face to face but that’s not possible, the next best thing is talking on the phone to someone. But sadly, many people don’t even use the phone to talk anymore, instead they choose to text their conversations. I find this not only puzzling but sad. The sound of someone’s voice is priceless; especially if you can’t be face to face.

Again, these were just some of my thoughts and actually have made me start to pray into some of these things. I’ve been asking the Lord about how to be more intentional in using my words, especially my spoken words. And I’ve been talking to Him about how to actually begin using methods of audible speech more often and more effectively. I know this is possible on MeWe and Voxer but I’m guilty of all the sad things others are doing; I text more often than pick up my phone and call someone. I type out conversations on MeWe rather than using a built in feature that allows me to use my voice; I simply haven’t really utilized the resources I’ve had at hand very much.

I can only guess the reason I haven’t used the audible resources that much is this thing about me not liking the sound of my recorded voice. I cringe when I hear it and say, ‘Is that my voice? I don’t sound like that!’ So, I tend to type out things rather than speak them, I don’t even give it much thought, most days.

Honestly, I don’t want to be a hypocrite and talk about using our voices when I don’t even do it myself. Help me Lord! But then again, this not liking my own voice could be something the enemy planted years ago that I’ve come into agreement with, or simply fear that I came into agreement with. Whichever the case may be, it’s simply not acceptable; I will just have to jump that chicken line of sounding terrible and SPEAK my words, by golly!