In this season, God is emphasizing that all things are being worked together for our good. He is shifting our focus from lack to the abundance He is reestablishing in the earth. It is a necessary time to celebrate the faithfulness and goodness of God. Our focus and the fruit of our lives will determine what spirit we are aligned with, and God is charging His people to come up higher and partner with the spirit of reconciliation. God's anthem is family and He is calling us to protect and fight for children who can't defend themselves. He is inviting His people to live with a "Heaven to Earth" mindset and choose to be a part of His redemptive solution.
Heaven to Earth
"Then Samuel took a stone and set it up between Mizpah and Shen. He named it Ebenezer, saying, 'Thus far the Lord has helped us.'" (1 Samuel 7:12)
Surrounded (Fight My Battles) by Elyssa Smith:
In the valley, I know that You're with me
And surely Your goodness and mercy follow me
So my weapons are praise and thanksgiving
This is how I fight my battles
And I believe You've overcome
And I will lift my song of praise for what You've done...
Some of you may have been feeling lately like things are challenging, what you're trying isn't working, or like you're missing each other when you communicate. In times like these, it can be tempting to focus on what is not working rather than the things that are. Whenever we become fixated on what we feel like God is not, or what seems to not be working, it is in those times that we lose sight of His focus.
If we believe Romans 8:28, which tells us that God is working all things together for our good, then we can trust in the fact that even when it feels like so much is not prospering, there are things that are. We must shift our focus to what we know God is doing.
This is an excellent time to celebrate the testimony of God's faithfulness and provision in other people's lives. It is always good to make testimonies a priority, but especially when you're struggling to see how God is moving. We want to stay focused on hosting a Heaven to Earth mindset rather than an Earth to Heaven mindset.
It is so easy to get caught up in the negative things happening all around us, especially when we watch the news. Maintaining a Heaven to Earth mindset is like a muscle that has to be developed and it takes time and discipline in order to hone your senses to focus on what God is doing.
Our words are powerful, and it's helpful to remember that our thoughts become words, and what we focus on (or give attention to) becomes thoughts.
What is God doing? He is warring on our behalf and sending angels to fight for us. He has a plan for our good, and when we keep our focus from Heaven to Earth we get to be a part of it. When we focus on Earth to Heaven (lack and unanswered prayers) we are working against Him.
It's time to get on board or get out of the way. We are in the midst of a spiritual battle and we need all hands on deck. We have to keep our minds focused on the testimonies of answered prayers so that we don't get caught up in a whirlwind of negativity.
People who are feeling discouraged, or like they don't see a way out (for things to get better), are sure to be encouraged when they focus on the testimonies of God's goodness. Share testimonies often! This time that we are in will be a very telling time; we will see if what we think we believe about God is what we actually believe about God. (Photo via Wikimedia Commons)
Led by the Spirit
"The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity, and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions, and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the Kingdom of God.
"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Against such things, there is no law." (Galatians 5:19-23)
We have all been around or seen (in the public eye) charismatic, winsome smooth talkers who are easy to like. If we're not careful, we can align ourselves with or become influenced by someone who doesn't share our values. It is so easy to unintentionally be affected by people with opposite values when we don't examine their fruit. The fruit in our lives is a good indicator of what spirit we are aligned with.
Do they have healthy relationships? Are they kind? Do they carry peace? Do they speak well of others or bash others? Do they stir up dissension or cultivate unity? Do you feel loved by them or judged? Are they critical or generous?
You may be faced with situations where you need to decide what you believe about something or someone. You may, in fact, come face to face with a situation where you need wisdom and discernment.
If you've been feeling confused, if you are seeking the truth, or if you are at a fork in the road, pay attention as God reminds you that He's given you the tools you need to discern someone's heart motive. If your measuring stick is the fruit of the Spirit, it will be very clear if the fruit comes from the Spirit or from the sinful nature.
Discernment is the ability to judge well. This is not about judging someone according to your own preferences or opinions, but rather, judging them according to the Spirit. Ask yourself telling questions: After being around this person or hearing from them, do you feel that there is love present, that peace is coming from them? If not, there's a chance that this person is not aligned with the Spirit of God.
If you feel like this word is for you, do your own research. If you're able to, go directly to the source that is the topic of discussion. For example, if the person you follow is being critical of something or someone, go to the source to do your own research and develop your own Spirit-led conclusions. Be familiar with the fruit of the Spirit and take the time necessary to examine the fruit, rather than being influenced and tossed back and forth by the emotion of the situation. Calmly examine the fruit.
Authenticity is when we are aligned in our thoughts, our beliefs, and our actions. What is your authentic heart motivation? Is it condemnation? To be right? Or simply to seek out the truth?
A Spotless Bride
"[S]o that He may present the Church to Himself as glorious—not having a stain or wrinkle, or any such blemish, but holy and blameless." (Ephesians 5:27)
God is calling us to reconciliation among the Body of Christ. There is a shaking coming where we will be given a choice in what we do or believe. People will be challenged to choose between partnering with God in unity or divisiveness. Some of you will experience a shaking because a leader you looked up to is compromised. A leader or situation may be shown to be different than you originally believed or thought. We are called to be a spotless Bride. When we are faced with disappointment, we can choose to unite with other Believers (even across denominational lines) or we can divide. This shaking CAN bring us closer, but it will take intentional acts of reconciliation.
God is charging His people to come up higher and walk in their true identity as His spotless Bride. He's calling us to come together in unity and love because that is the true desire of His heart and nature. We are a reflection of our Father and it's time for us to shine.
2 Corinthians 5:18-20 talks about the ministry of reconciliation: "All this is from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to Himself in Christ, not counting people's sins against them. And He has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ's ambassadors, as though God were making His appeal through us. We implore you on Christ's behalf: Be reconciled to God." (Photo via PickPik)
In order to be Christ's ambassadors during this time, we must commit to the process and consistently choose to seek out God's redemptive solution.
This word is for two groups of people: people that God is stirring in their hearts the need and the call for reconciliation in the Church and people that have found themselves really shaken by a situation in their lives (disillusioned, disappointed, devastated). If this is you, it is key for you to receive what Christ has done for you.
Stand boldly in the truth that you are forgiven and loved just as you are. Take part in receiving Christ through communion. Focus on receiving what Christ paid for in your life. If you don't already know, ask God to show you how to take a step towards unity. Ask Him to show you a glimpse of the spotless Bride, His Body, and to reveal your part to play in bringing unity in the earth.
Blessed Are the Children
"Children are a gift from the Lord; they are a reward from Him." (Psalm 127:3)
There is a movement in the earth right now to destroy family by harming and devaluing children. Society tells us that children don't know how to think. We have been conditioned to believe it's easier for us to tell them to stop doing something that bothers us rather than to teach them. We have been taught to judge large families for their family unit size as being irresponsible.
This movement to destroy family also sounds like normalizing pedophilia by making it a sexual preference. It sounds like normalizing abortion so that we don't think about the fact that we are killing God's precious babes. It looks like selling aborted baby body parts to the highest bidder. It looks like turning a blind eye to the enormous problem of human trafficking.
All of these movements are targeted, focused attacks to silence, dehumanize and devalue children. In Matthew 18:6 the Bible is clear on what God thinks about this: "But if anyone abuses one of these little ones who believe in Me, it would be better for him to have a heavy boulder tied around his neck and be hurled into the deepest sea than to face the punishment he deserves!" (The Passion Translation). The truth is that children often are more sensitive to the Spirit than adults, and their purity is beloved by God. This is a war on the family, but more specifically on children.
God is waking people up to the truth of what's been happening. He is sounding the alarm saying, "Wake up! Look what's happening to families and to My beloved children." He's calling us to see what's happening and to partner with Him to change it. God is revealing His heart for children.
This word is for people whose anthem is family. It is for those who have been awakened to the truth; people that have been praying for God to reveal strategy for their own family and the Body as a whole. He's exposing lies that people have been believing and waking people up to the truth that has been hidden by society to further their own evil agenda. He's exposing the lies that children are less than, that children are incapable of thinking on their own, that it's just easier to do things for children than teach them, and that children are a burden rather than a blessing from the Lord.
If this pricks your heart, this word is likely for you. If you don't already know, search the Scriptures to find out what God actually says about family and children. Ask God to reveal to you the sanctity and blessing of children and to pray in a way that aligns with God's heart for them. It is time to rise up, champion God's truth, and fight for the little ones who can't defend themselves!
Declarations for this season:
1. My words bring Heaven to Earth.
2. My senses are trained to recognize good fruit.
3. I am a minister of reconciliation in the Body of Christ.
4. Blessed are the children.
5. I am a part of God's redemptive solution.
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The Crowning Jewels
Texas-born¬†Anne Ballard¬†worked as a nurse for seventeen years before fully embracing her creative nature. Having grown up believing that God only spoke through the Bible, her life was transformed with the personal knowledge that He still speaks today. As she experienced a revelation of God's love for her and the power of words to transform and heal, she began designing jewelry, partnering with Holy Spirit to create a tangible way to bring Heaven to Earth. This is where her prophetic jewelry company, The Crowning Jewels, was birthed. Many people recognize her company as a business-ministry hybrid. She is known as a prophetic visionary with the drive to accomplish her dreams. Her mandate is to champion others as they discover their God given identity and fulfill their divine purpose. After living in Redding, CA for ten years, she recently moved back home and currently resides in Texas.
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