Saturday, November 26, 2016

Just Three Plays!

Stop being defeated by an enemy that has only three plays! Yes, the enemy of your soul operates with only three tactics -- temptation, deception and accusation.

In the world of sports, any football, basketball, soccer or baseball team can will a game if they have the opponent’s playbook. They know what to expect. They understand which players to block, tackle or foul. The competition becomes less about chance and more about strategy. And there’s no doubt that when a playbook is compromised, the power of the win is shifted to the team with access to secret information.
In the life of the believer, we are equipped to WIN in terms of spiritual warfare. We have TRUTH, RIGHTEOUSNESS, PEACE, FAITH, SALVATION, and THE WORD OF GOD! Top that off with the Holy Spirit and your constant access to prayer, and you are well equipped to defeat Satan and his armies (Ephesians 6:10-18). After all, he will never have a new plan or strategy. He can only steal and destroy. He cannot create anything new.
Be warned, people of God. The enemy is well aware of his limitations, so don’t underestimate him. He’s a genius at using his weapons, so we must be trained and skilled in using our own. Knowing and understanding how our enemy works leaves us with no excuse. He will tempt us to sin. He will cause things to seem different than they really are, and he will use guilt to keep us captive. Don’t fall for it! Do not participate! He has only three plays. Read the Word of God and know what his plan involves.
Here are a few examples...
  • The Word of God tells us we are tempted with our own lusts (James 1:13-15). Truthfully, our flesh plays a bigger part in our temptations than the enemy does. Yet, he will entice us into situations that heighten our temptations. Living a righteous and holy lifestyle protects us. As we flee even the appearance of evil (1 Thessalonians 5:22-24), we restrict the enemy’s access to our most sensitive and vulnerable areas. Holiness simply leads us to avoid or strategically enter areas of temptation. For instance, if you’re going out for the night and want to restrict the possibility of lust and sexual sin, own the atmosphere. Take control of the situation. Go out in a group instead of individually. This is part of the fight.
  • Deception is an area where the enemy attacks believers more than any other method. He will literally take a situation or event and create a “truth” in your mind that is not based on fact or reality. Think about it... How many times have you been afraid of something that never happened? How many times have you perceived that someone was angry with you when they never were? Too often, Satan uses fear, offense and misunderstanding to cause division and isolate God’s people from those who truly love them. This is why discernment is so important! We must learn to cast down thoughts and imaginations that are not of God (2 Corinthians 10:4-6), rather than allowing them to fester and create false realities. Even more, we need to TALK (Matthew 18) to one another. Communication is part of the fight.
  • Accusation is the tool the enemy uses to incite guilt, depression and loneliness. It is an evil tactic, though very effective. Satan is a master at bringing up one’s past or making them feel as if they are just not “good enough”. How often we forget that grace and mercy are what they are BECAUSE we’re not good enough. They can’t be earned, yet God chooses to love us in spite of. Condemnation does not belong to us (Romans 8:1)! God is faithful, with new mercies every morning. When we confess our sins, they are forgiven (1 John 1:9). Knowing the Word of God is imperative. Study and fellowship reinforce the Father’s heart toward us. They are part of the fight.
We battle temptation with righteousness. We battle deception with discernment and truth. We battle accusation with the Word of God.
Don’t lose to an opponent with only three plays! AMEN.

Tuesday, November 01, 2016

Manipulative Connections

It grieves my heart to see so many people of God, especially women, feeling the need to receive everyone who decides to connect with you after breaking a relationship. We must not be enslaved to the world’s view of how a Christian should act.

Time and time again, we see it. People do something rude, crazy or disrespectful. Then, they walk out of your life. You and God move through the process of healing, deliverance, forgiveness, and restoration only for them to return and act as if it’s your responsibility to open yourself up to them again. Don’t get me wrong. Forgiveness is required. But your availability is NOT!

I have learned the hard way. People will make you feel guilty (if you let them) when you don’t comply with their expectations of you. That doesn’t make it sin! I’ve heard time and time again the story of the prodigal son and how we should receive people when they come back, regardless of their infractions. Let me help you… if it’s not YOUR son, feel free to send them back to their daddy! Stop letting people use Scripture, clearly out of context, to manipulate you.

I have been the one who would answer the phone calls and messages that come from people I haven’t heard from in years. I was the one that would loan the money and spend the time. Then, GOD HELPED ME! It’s not a sin to restrict your availability. Being available to everyone means that someone you’re divinely assigned to is missing out. It means that while all your time, money and energy are being wasted on distractions, your family, friends, and partners in ministry are receiving only leftovers.

It is okay, man of God… It is okay, woman of God… to say ‘no’. It’s okay to delete the message without responding, and it’s okay to dismiss the phone call. Today’s technology has trapped so many of us into a false sense of responsibility.

BE FREE! Even Jesus ran and hid from the crowds to be with His Father. Value your time and energy so you can spend them on those people to whom you are sent.

Be available to God, and He will connect you with the right people. If you simply connect to people, you will surely miss God!


Friday, October 14, 2016

Counseling through Tragedy

Kingdom people understand the need to allow others opportunity for the process of mourning without allowing them to stay there. We must show compassion while also refusing to abandon or accept defeat.

This is one of the greatest divides labeled as "church hurt." When people are hurting the worst things we can do are:

  • Refuse them the opportunity to process that hurt; or
  • Allow them to stay in the hurt too long.

I am well aware that I've lost a few "followers" over this very thing. Some people want to move on, regardless of their broken situations and think they should be free to influence others. I do not support that. We all need to be healed if we want to be used in healing others. On the other hand, I've also been accused of lacking sensitivity, because I warn people of the enemy's plan to plague us with victim mentalities. At some point, regardless of how bad the situation may be, you need to move on by the power and grace of God. There are times and seasons for everything. Redemption and forgiveness are NOT options but requirements. Healing MUST take place.

I say that to say this: I am a preacher. Yet, I don't blast people with biblical jargon when tragedy happens. At the same time, depression is not allowed in my circle. When the season needs to conclude, I will be there to encourage, and even push for restoration and healing.

If you want to dance over your hurt, and act like it's not there by ignoring the issue... I won't be your dancing partner. And if you want to stay in your hurt while decorating your life for a pity party... I won't be there with a black balloon.

No, I don't lack compassion. And no, I don't lack faith. I believe in balance, as does our Father. That's sound biblical wisdom.


Wednesday, August 24, 2016

On Alert - Prophetic Dreams

For the last few nights, the Lord has given me a number of dreams all dealing with worldly deception coming from within the institutionalized church. Rather than sharing the details of each, I’ll share some of the first two, as these are the ones that resonates the most.

The 1st Dream
I was invited to the prophetic and apostolic ordination of a church leader that I know. I happen not to agree with the doctrine and practices of this woman in leadership, so I was very surprised that I was even invited. I was even more surprised when I was invited to actually facilitate the service, alongside her husband, and lay hands on her. I cordially declined the invitation, but then found myself in the service. I had no idea how I ended up there, and didn’t want to be. I was dressed in lots of vestments, which I never wear, standing on a stage with this lady standing in front of me.

I prayed within myself, telling God that I didn’t understand what was happening. I asked Him to give me the words and vowed to preach the truth since I suddenly had an audience of hundreds. I was given the microphone and began to share the truth of God’s Word. Unfortunately, I was saying one thing, but another was coming out. I was extremely frustrated. I was saying, “repent”, but out of my mouth came “give honor to this great and mighty woman of God.” Inwardly, I was crying out to God. I couldn’t understand what was happening. The people were clapping, shouting and jumping around. I was heartbroken and confused.

At some point, it was time to lay hands on the candidate. I turned to walk away, determined not to participate. Yet, my hands touched her head and pushed her down to the ground, giving the appearance that she’d received some impartation from me and that I’d affirmed this lady as an apostle and prophet.

I woke up.

The warning from this dream, among other things, includes:

§ We must be extremely careful of our connections and our location in this season. The world is misinterpreting and misunderstanding many messages being sent out from the Sent Ones. They are seeing and hearing that which confirms what they desire to do. So, our audiences must be strategic and pointed. We must be careful, as many are “stealing” validation from those who truly walk in relationship with God.

The 2nd Dream
At some point, a government official came to my home and insisted that I come with him. He was very pleasant and explained that with all the world’s troubles, there was an effort to gather all the apostles and prophets to pray and strategize on how our country might be saved. I agreed to go, as he explained the desperation that was being felt and the fact that this country needs God.

When I arrived at what I thought would be some sort of official meeting, I got out of the car that was sent for me and looked at a huge, immaculately decorated building. Immediately, I was nervous. I knew something wasn’t right, though I couldn’t put my finger on what it was. The number of people was astounding. I desperately looked over the crowd and spotted a familiar face – a very dear friend that I often call my Sister Prophet. She and I embraced, and I could tell by the look on her face that she too was growing skeptical. We were given what looked like the typical church conference badge and asked to enter the building.

As we entered the great hall, I remember fearing that we were being tricked, just as the Jewish people were, into entering a gas chamber. We knew we’d entered some sort of spiritual concentration camp set up by the government, but couldn’t articulate why or how. I was relieved when we walked the long hall, decorated with gold, to ultimate find ourselves in a huge auditorium. There was a worship band on stage, and we found some empty seats about 20-30 rows up from center stage.

We tried to participate in worship and we anxiously looked around. We whispered at one another, noticing that something was just strange. We were skeptical as a preacher walked on stage and asked that we all have our seats. He began to preach a message about unity and love. While it was scripturally sound, his message did not agree with my sister or me. We were troubled in our spirit. In the dream, it was obvious that we stayed within this facility, some sort of luxury hotel, for a number of weeks. During that time, it was explained that we’d been drafted for a new reality show – The Biggest Loser, the Spiritual Version. The show, as they explained, was to “soften” the American public to God’s most powerful spiritual people by exhibiting our weaknesses. In this case, everyone chosen was full of authority and power with signs following, but struggled with discipline in the flesh, particularly in regard to food.

Suddenly, I was embarrassed. The world recognized my anointing, but also that I struggle with weight and overeating. I felt completely humiliated. My Sister Prophet grew angry as we briefed on our new diet and exercise programs. I remember thinking that if they could help me control my weight, there would be nothing I couldn’t do for God. I began trying to look for a positive in what was obviously a terrible situation.

After a few weeks on the program, both Sister Prophet and I had lost quite a bit of weight. We were brought into the auditorium for the weekly taping and were told that we had a special surprise coming – our friends and family would join us for the taping. We were exciting to see our friends, family and church families. Then, the announcer changed the tone of his voice. He asked the guests in the audience if they were ready for a surprise. “It’s now time for EXPOSURE”, he said. To my horror, he called out the name of my Sister Prophet as well as my own. He began reading off all the things we’d done in the past and argued that if we couldn’t control our weight, certainly we weren’t delivered from the fornication, lying or any other sin we’d committed in the past. Then, on live television, he began to challenge our family and friends by asking them pointed questions. “Did she or didn’t she?” I grew angry as they questioned my children and my husband.

As we looked on in disbelief, my Sister Prophet and I noticed that event those in the audience were not able to see or speak spiritually once they entered the auditorium. Somehow we knew that when the cameras began rolling, discernment was killed. With the entertainment came death. Ultimately, they began cuffing us and escorting us out on unfounded charges. My Sister Prophet went first. I tried to fight as they pulled her away, but she quieted me. She told me not to worry. She told me we had to go, and possibly die, because they knew we could see, despite their efforts.

I woke up from the dream.

After a few days of praying and meditating over that dream, I’ve received a number of warnings from the Father. In summary,

§ God’s people must be cautious about mixing culture and the prophetic or anything else sacred. Our gifts are for the Church, the Body of Christ. We are not spiritually equipped for worldly gain.

§ Understand that Satan’s Kingdom will NEVER sanction or support the Kingdom of God. In this season, we MUST pick a side. Unity is not the answer to every issue, particularly when such unity would require the joining of the dark with light. Such a union is contrary to the Word of God. It cannot happen.

§ The redeemed of the Lord must be sure in who they are. Are you truly born again? If so, don’t allow the enemy or anyone else to judge your past. Too many are still living in guilt because they have not fully embraced the righteousness of God. Without faith, it’s impossible to please Him. Without faith, it’s impossible to move forward.

§ Not every gathering of prophets, apostles or believers is of God. Many are merely cultural expressions of Satan’s gatherings, disguised as convocations, conclaves, etc. Kingdoms have distinguished borders. Beware of anything that attempts to merge or blur the lines between the world and the Church of Jesus Christ, Messiah. It may look like church, but is it drawing people to Christ or flesh?

Watch and pray! Deception is active.

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Don't Hold Back

Ministry leaders, discipling others often results in hurt, disappointment and betrayal. They did it to Jesus, so it will definitely happen to you.

Resist the temptation to withhold your trust and investment in others based on past situations and relationships. Remember, if you indeed walk in holiness, it's the Christ in you that is rejected. Don't take it personal. Just realize that many will not like you when you stand on the truth.

It's okay. Do not cast blame. Do not hold grudges. And do not take it personally. Your love for God's people must remain strong and intact. You signed up to be used of God. In doing so, you will also be used by people. That's the position of a servant. Rejoice, and press forward. Plant your seeds and know that God will always bring the increase, whether you are there to see it or not.

Thursday, March 03, 2016

Conduct around Non-Believers Matters

Colossians 4:5-6 (NLT) says, "Live wisely among those who are not believers, and make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be gracious and attractive so that you will have the right response for everyone."

What is your example before non-believers? Too often, those who claim to be God's elect fail to govern themselves in the world while "pulling things together" when it's time to go to church.


We are called to be the light of the world and the salt of the earth. We are then instructed to present our faults before one another (fellow believers), that we may pray for healing, wholeness and forgiveness.

Let's turn this thing around, that God will be glorified and we counted as obedient. Selah.

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Virtual Courage or Cowardice?

When I was a child, I would often hear adults refer to alcohol as "liquid courage." The idea was that a drunk would be brutally honest. Excessive alcohol relaxes an individual and removes inhibition so that they are seemingly bold in their blunt honesty.

The same phenomenon exists with many today in this world of virtual communications. Facebook, Twitter and other social networks seem to give people a false sense of security, a "virtual courage" that enables them to be honest, yet deceptive all at the same time. Like the "liquid courage" this willingness to air the proverbial dirty laundry is not to be applauded, as it exposes in many the hypocrisy that lies in those of us who claim to be a child of God.

In the streets, there is a code of honor which dictates that if a person has something to say, they should say it to the face of the intended recipient. Gossip, back-biters and snitches are not regarded highly. The Kingdom of God is the same way. If we have an issue with another, especially another in the Body of Christ, we have a responsibility to talk directly to that person (Matthew 18), rather than posting innuendos on social media in hopes to build a "virtual gang" to help us fight the ensuing battle.

We must remember that Satan is still the prince of this world (John 12:31; 2 Corinthians 4:4). These airways of media and networking, while we can certainly use them to glorify God, were created for the world. Let's not adopt worldly methods to handle Kingdom business. It just doesn't work.

Man up or put on your "big girl panties" and handle your business like a child of God, rather than a hoodlum. Selah.