From the desk of Steve Shultz:
I always enjoy reading Bob Hartley's words. It's like going on a prophetic encounter, literally, as he describes the details of his experiences with the Lord. You'll learn much as you read through with "prophetic eyeglasses."
By the way, we have an Israel Tour coming up in September. You can join me, Kim Clement and Wendy and Rory Alec from God.tv. Hope to see you in Israel with us in September!
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REVIEW OF THE 2011 ENCOUNTER OF HOPE CRAFTSMEN
Starting in December, I shared a series of prophetic encounters from the Lord regarding the years 2011 and beyond. From the porch swing of Heaven, Jesus showed me that there would be five Great Waves of Challenge in 2011...BUT GOD! The Lord had greater "hope" solutions that would take what was intended for evil and turn it into good. I saw "Hope Craftsmen" that the Lord was raising up in this time, ones that are skilled in bringing hope and confidence in the goodness of God in all of life.
The Encounter About the "Class of Useful Information"
In a second encounter, the Lord showed me that the "Hope Craftsmen" had been stripped of the necessary tools at the top of the mountains of influence in society, and they had been left vulnerable...BUT GOD! He had a solution! In this encounter, the Hope Craftsmen stood outside of a classroom that read, "The Class of Useful Information." In this classroom, lessons were being taught from the "Book of Hope" that would equip them with the necessary hope building blocks for this season. Jesus was accepting students, not because they were qualified but because they were WILLING. No one was turned away that had a willing heart! (To read about the classroom encounter click here.)
The Lord began to reveal to me the first several chapters of the "Book of Hope" used in "The Class of Useful Information." Each chapter of the book addressed the hope building blocks that the Hope Craftsmen needed in order to succeed and advance in hope where there had once been only hopelessness. The Lord wanted to give hope craftsmen new "eyeglasses" (the ability to see Him rightly through face to face prayer with Him), new "hearing aids" (the ability to hear His heart) and new "body armor" (the ability to build true community and marvelous camaraderie with others).
Chapter One in the "Book of Hope":
The Right "Eyeglasses"
The first chapter of the "Book of Hope" addressed the need for the right "eyeglasses" that would restore vision to see God rightly in everyday life. Without the proper eyeglasses to see God, the Hope Craftsmen were left visionless and vulnerable. They needed the right perspective. I thought of Proverbs 29:18: "Where there is no vision, the people perish," and the Lord said, "My people must have a right vision of who I am in this hour to succeed and thrive in the days to come."
The Lord showed me that the answer to this need for the right "eyeglasses" was "face to face" prayer or adoration. Face to face prayer with God would begin to restore people's view of Him. This type of prayer is the most intimate kind of prayer as it is a choice to love and magnify God above all else in every circumstance and season of life. Where the Hope Craftsmen had only brought to Him their challenges, I saw that they would be able to draw near to Him simply for the sake of loving Him and developing friendship with Him through adoration. They would begin to enter His presence with deep thanksgiving and praise and this would heal their perspective of God and life.
Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise. Give thanks to Him, bless His name. For the LORD is good; His lovingkindness is everlasting and His faithfulness to all generations.—Psalm 100:5
From Hearing at a Distance to Seeing Him with the Right "Eyeglasses"
In the first chapter of the "Book of Hope," there was a call to all Hope Craftsmen to experience true prayer and communion with God where one begins to see Him rightly. The Lord compared many in the Body of Christ to Job, who attempted to live morally and according to God's principles, however walking with Him and living in nearness to Him were not the norm in everyday life. When many trials came to Job, he turned to the Lord and petitioned for His help. When the Lord responded to Job, He revealed His greatness and the true knowledge of Himself (see Job 38). Job was left stunned by the greatness of God, and in Job 42:5 he exclaims, "I had heard of you by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees you."
A distant hearing of the Lord only allows for a certain revelation of who He is in the midst of challenges like those that Job faced, but God longs to open up a seeing of the eye where a true knowledge of Him is revealed.
As I continued to read in the "Book of Hope," I began to recall many prophecies that I had heard or given myself. The Lord started asking me the question, "Did you SEE Me when I spoke to you what was coming ahead?" He said, "You prophesied the problem but not the solution in Me, because you could not see My hopeful eyes as I was speaking to you."
The Lord continued to ask me, "Could you SEE Me when I said, 'Children, in this world you will have trouble, but take heart for I have overcome the world'?" (John 16:33). I was reminded of Psalm 32:8: "I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with My loving eye." I realized that "face to face" prayer and communion with God is an invitation to see Him with the seeing of the eye through intimate devotion.
Seeing His Supreme Value
As I myself began to wear these new "eyeglasses," I began to see that Jesus is all that is to be considered in this hour. At the core, my perspective was shifted to see the pure worthiness of God and the supreme value of Jesus and was challenged to see His greatness valued in every arena of life. I was instantly aware that this visitation was not about people and purposes but was all about Him and our ability to focus on seeing His glory.
I saw the ZEAL of the Father for the Bride of His Son to stop looking to circumstances and challenges first, becoming tossed about like a boat on a stormy sea, but that she would look into the eyes of Jesus, her heavenly, passionate Bridegroom who has overcome the world (John 16:33). Only then could His Bride begin to see who He really is and His supreme value above all, thus building her foundation on the Rock (Matthew 7:25).
These Eyeglasses Allow Us to See the Supremacy and Depth of His All-Consuming Value
In this encounter, I heard the Father shouting 1 Corinthians 8:6 to the Body of Christ: "For [you] there is but one God, the Father, from whom all things came and for whom [you] live; and there is but one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom all things came and through whom [you] live. My Son is All in All."
Then through these eyeglasses, I saw the Lord Jesus standing by His throne, and in the palm of His hand everything on the earth was resting. All of the weighty issues of the earth, the nations, the economy, governments, elections, natural disasters, and terrorism, etc., were held there. They were all big to me, but so little to Him. Suddenly, all these things began to shrink until they fit into the palm of His hand. Then I saw every person on the earth also in His hand. All of their weighty concerns, issues, tragedies, relationships, decisions, needs, etc. And they too began to shrink until they all fit into the palm of His hand. Then I saw the entire universe, the stars and the galaxies, and they too shrank until they fit into the palm of His hand.
Through these eyeglasses, my focus shifted to angelic messengers that were terrifying in their stature. But even they were less than one millionth of His glory! These angels began to declare facts about the Lord, but the greatest truth of who He was emanated from the Lord Himself in a way I could not describe. Jesus was the focal point of all the heavenly realm and I received a totally captivating view of His all-consuming value and worth.
Through these eyeglasses, I could see the power of the Lord and knew that He was the supreme authority on the earth. He just "WAS"...and in His being, all authority and power belonged to Him. The Lord was transcendent before my eyes and appeared in a manner beyond description. It was stunning, just as in Job 42:5 where Job was struck by the goodness and greatness of God and began to truly see Him.
The Lord repeated over and over to me that the true knowledge of God and seeing Him rightly was all that the nations needed. I was reminded of Hosea 4:6, "My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge [of God]," and 2 Corinthians 10:4-5, "For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ." Our battle is over the true knowledge of God!
These Eyeglasses Show Us the Total Love and Care of the Lord in the Midst of the Fire
Next, through these eyeglasses, I was taken into Daniel 3 and I watched as the scene unfolded before me. Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego had refused to worship the golden image that Nebuchadnezzar had set up, and the king commanded that they be thrown into a furnace that was heated seven times hotter than normal. My heart raced as the three men were thrown bound into the midst of the fiery inferno.
As I continued to watch these three figures huddled in the flames, a forth figure appeared with them. Jesus came into the fire and held the hands of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego. I realized that Jesus could have come with His angels and with His glory and thundered into the fire, but instead He chose to come in quietly and stand WITH them in the midst of their tribulation. The very fire that was meant to consume them instead burned away their bonds. Even more remarkably, I saw that Daniel 3:27 was true, that "the fire had no effect on the bodies of these men nor was the hair of their head singed, nor were their trousers damaged, nor had the smell of fire even come upon them."
This is a kairos time! I saw that we are all in the fire; we are all on this planet and arrows are flying every which way, but with the right "eyeglasses" on, with the right view and understanding of who He is, we become acutely aware that He is right there in the fire with us! And He will use the very flames that were meant to consume us to burn away our chains of fear, hopelessness, performance mentalities, need for approval and misperceptions about God that keep us in bondage. He desires to give everybody a sign that He is good to them – their own personal sign in the fire so that His nature is not misunderstood in the midst of the catastrophes of life.
I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.—John 16:33
What does He want to speak to us in the fire? In this encounter, Jesus shared with me that He longs to hold our hands and whisper His promises to us in the midst of the fire. He wants to tell us how He is going to overcome the challenges with us. He wants to tell us His truth so that we awe at Him and His goodness. He wants to tell us how He is partnering with us and has partnered with us in the past. He wants to tell us how He desires to heal the land through us. He wants to give us enough compassion not to "duck and hide" but to move out of love from His heart. He is a good and forgiving God in the fire!
These Eyeglasses Also Reveal that All of Life is a Test of How We Respond to His Value and His Will
It was clear to me that all of life is a test of our response to Him: I saw that we often look at our desires and our circumstances versus Him and His will. God is beyond fear; He is the fact. These angelic messengers were "seemingly surprised" by how humans were tripping in a level place by magnifying their problems and fears, thus confining themselves to prisons of their own making. They had done it to themselves! I saw that God would leave them in their prisons until they responded to Him. He never wanted them to be too afraid, looking at the waves, that they did not step out onto the water as Peter had. If we keep our eyes on Jesus, versus the waves, we will not sink. It was their choice. All that was needed was to look at Him.
And Peter got out of the boat, and walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But seeing the wind, he became frightened, and beginning to sink, he cried out, "Lord, save me!" Immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and took hold of him, and said to him, "You of little faith, why did you doubt?"—Matthew 14:29-31
A New View of God
With these new "eyeglasses," I saw that face-to-face prayer restores a healed view of God where He had been misunderstood and misrepresented, revealing Him as a good Father, and the one who is "All in All." We are being called to a mandate to totally, utterly and uniquely set our eyes upon the Lord, considering His ways and His greatness above all else.
The Lord said to me, "There are so many questions being posed across the nations that challenge the goodness of My nature. But adoration settles everything. As trials and tragedies mount up, your view of Me can become dimmer and dimmer. You MUST see Me rightly! I am preparing My children for all kinds of challenges by awakening them to the true knowledge of who I am. I am the captain of the Host of Heaven, and if you peer into MY eyes, I will give you the solutions...it's ME!"
I started to magnify the greatness of God in His heart as I continued to read the Book of Hope. The transformation in my heart was remarkable. As I stared into the face of God, it was impossible to keep staring at the challenges. I became more impressed with God than with the circumstances. As I experienced the wondrous beauty and hopefulness of the Lord, it caused me to realize the value of His heart to a greater magnitude. I began to see that not only would God answer our questions regarding the waves of challenges coming in 2011, but most importantly...HE IS OUR ANSWER.
As I continued in friendship with God through adoration prayer, peace that passed my understanding began to settle around me. I knew that many of the Hope Craftsmen still lived with turmoil and fear, and I was shocked by the level of contentment and rest available to the Hope Craftsmen through this "face to face" prayer. I began to experience God as the Good Shepherd of Psalm 23, and as I looked to my Good Shepherd, my soul was restored; I had no lack and no fear, even through the valley of challenge.
And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.—Philippians 4:7
Next Steps for "Hope Craftsmen" in This Time
"Face to Face" prayer was the most foundational step in "The Class of Useful Information." I saw that as people began to love and honor the Lord rightly through face to face prayer and adoration, they received a healed view of Him and "an unshakeable hope in God." They would not be moved by the circumstances but filled with confidence as they stared at the beauty of God.
I saw that they would receive a healed view of themselves. The hearts of many Hope Craftsmen were coming alive as they began to see what God sees about them. They had confidence and hope in their identity in Him again.
Once they looked at Him enough to receive a proper perspective of His hopefulness and goodness, they were able to have a healed view of their past and future as well. They saw how God was moving on their behalf in their past and how committed He was to their future. Jesus is the fairest of ten thousand, ten million, ten billion! He wants to be recognized! And all of our lives are to be lived to adore Him!
Please join us as we look to the Lord to reveal more regarding the new "eyeglasses" (the ability to see Him rightly through face to face prayer with Him), new "hearing aids" (the ability to hear His heart) and new "body armor" (the ability to build true community and marvelous camaraderie with others). We are committed to seeing you receiving the tools necessary to succeed as Hope Craftsmen! Please contact us for more information.
Deeper Waters Inc
About Bob Hartley: Bob Hartley is the founder of Hartley Institute/Deeper Waters Ministry in Kansas City, Missouri, inspired through a dream the Lord gave to Bob more than a decade ago, where the Lord spoke that the "The youth of this nation are diving into 'shallow waters' of the knowledge of God, and it is killing them!" Bob's heart is to take this generation deep into the knowledge of God through hopeful, heartfelt prayer and intimacy with the Lord, and opening up their ability to hear from His heart and partner with the God of All of Life in every arena and season of the soul.
Bob served as a pastor at Metro Christian Fellowship with Mike Bickle before entering the marketplace in 1983, with a vision to see the marketplace redeemed and cities established that value and love the person of Jesus. He is also the Chief Executive Officer of the Hartley Group, a "Hope Center" for the marketplace, consisting of Hartley's Executive Cleaning, Swift Chemicals & Supply, Prize Properties and H&H Management in Kansas City, Missouri. Bob is a frequent speaker to youth, churches, businesses and national leaders throughout America and the world. His quest has been to bring the Kingdom of God into every arena of life and give spiritual tools and equipping to those seeking to know and love God in the midst of their everyday lives. Currently, Bob resides in Kansas City with his wife and four children.