Tag Archives: prophetic

Stretching Backward

SlingshotDawn recently had an experience in which she was walking with the Lord. The Lord was showing her some items of interest as they passed through a cavernous area. Then she saw a long row of slingshots stretching off into the distance. She noted that each slingshot had a place where a person could be firmly placed upon the launching band. She saw many people in this position, and she saw many more lined up, waiting their turn to be launched. The Lord showed her several things about these slingshots. First, they were there to launch his people forward into significant destiny and calling. Secondly, the Lord showed her that when the slingshot was being stretched into launch position, the person who was going to be launched was feeling stretched, and felt like they were going backward instead of forward. Third, many of the slingshots were ready to fire.

Within a day or two of that experience, I had a dream in which I saw Paul, the apostle. The Lord highlighted something so that I would recognize that he had been on one of those slingshots in his day. This helped me understand the stretching backwards a bit more fully.

Paul was an intelligent and learned man. He, by his own testimony, was a Hebrew of the Hebrews and a member of the well-respected sect of the Pharisees. He had learned at the erstwhile feet of Gamaliel, and was an intimate of the Sanhedrin and the High Priest. He had credentials plus. His life, and his destiny as an important man in the Jewish nation was assured. But then Jesus intervened. He gave him a calling and a destiny, and then placed him on that slingshot.

I am certain that when Paul was called by Jesus, he thought like most of us think when God initiates a call in our lives, “Now things are really going to start happening.” Things did start happening for the apostle. He started to be stretched backwards. He started his ministry with persecution from those who opposed Christ, and rejection by those who served Christ. He went from being a notable star in the Jewish nation, to almost complete obscurity for the best part of thirteen years. I’m sure there were times during that thirteen years that the apostle wondered how he had messed things up so badly; I can’t imagine that there were not times in which he wondered about all the ground he had lost in his life. He was being stretched backwards in preparation for his launch.

The Lord certainly has a purpose in this stretching, just like he has purpose in our stretching. Paul had to unlearn much of what he had learned. The religious system in which he was trained had touched every area of his life. Religious ambition and misunderstanding was bound up in Paul’s life. The Lord needed to burn all that out of Paul in order to use him fully. The Lord gave Paul time to unlearn his previous life, and grow in the life of the Spirit. In Paul’s life this took about thirteen years from the time Jesus called him to the time that God’s slingshot launched into his ministry to the Gentiles (see Acts 13).

I know that many people who feel “stretched backwards” read this blog. Some of you have had significant impact in life or ministry before the Lord called you for his special purposes. We often answer the Lord’s call with high expectation without realizing that the Lord’s call also implies that he is going to take the time to remodel our souls. That remodeling, that time of real spiritual growth, can feel like we are losing ground rather than gaining ground. But as God is preparing our soul’s, he is also arming the very mechanism that will launch us into his purposes. At just the right time, he will release us into the true purposes of his calling, and that launch will be breathtaking.

Are you feeling a bit stretched lately? Does it actually feel like you have been losing ground? That is probably a sign that you are getting close to the launch. Press on. When that launch comes you will quickly see your destiny unleashed.
——————————————————–

Subscription Notice: I have found that the most dependable way of notifying subscribers of a new post is through email. So I have added an email subscribe option below. Just add your email address and click subscribe (you will receive an email asking you to confirm your subscription—so check your spam folders if you don’t). You will receive an email alert whenever I publish an article. Your emails will be used for no other purpose.


 

Image credit: 6kor3dos / 123RF Stock Photo
original image has been slightly modified

More Storms Coming

14035415_sMy last post was about the power that intercessory prayer has released over weather systems this spring. At the time of the post, we had a year-long lull in tornado activity; a lull that was unprecedented since the record keeping started back in 1954. I was, and still am, excited that God’s people have stepped into intercessory authority. However, this is a war. We can never take the armor of God off, and we can never step off the walls, or the violent counter attacks that Satan is capable of unleashing may sweep us away.

In my last post I wrote (you may read the whole thing HERE):

I want to encourage all the intercessors to continue the good work. Even as I write this, severe storms are forecast for Oklahoma and Texas today. The prayers prayed in advance are having an impact, but we can also pray during the events and cut off Satan’s plans to kill, steal, and destroy. That is our job description, and our privilege.

Satan has truly been working to steal, kill, and destroy. Last Wednesday’s storms and tornadoes in Texas were awful. Six people died and dozens were injured. Yesterday’s tornado in Moore, Oklahoma was truly horrific. At least 24 people have died, many of them children at a local school. The grief and pain is unimaginable. My heart, my sympathies, and my prayers go out to all those who have suffered loss in these storms.

As intercessors, we may mourn with those who mourn, but we must also stay on the wall and do what we can to bring protection to our areas of influence. We may shed tears, and help in whatever way we can, but we must never forget our primary role, using the authority that God has given us so this does not happen again. We must intercede for our geographic areas. We must raise hedges of protection for the most vulnerable among us. And we must do it now, because more storms are coming.

The Lord has spoken to us about the tornado season this year. He didn’t give us a lot of details, but he did tell us that tornadoes were going to hit some towns. He then told us that we were to pay attention to the names of the towns that they struck. He said that their names would be signposts along the way.

Last week Wednesday tornadoes struck Granbury, Texas. As I explored the meaning of the town’s name, I told Dawn that I really hoped the name—Grand Bury— wasn’t pointing to a large death toll in the next tornado strike. Whether that was the intent of the “signpost” or not, yesterday’s strike certainly had a large and grievous death toll.

The reason I am writing this alert is found in the name of the town struck yesterday, Moore.

When I researched the meaning of the name, Granbury, I found that the town was named after a man named Granberry, but that he had changed the spelling of his name. In this instance, it wasn’t the historic meaning of the  name that mattered, it was the meaning of its current spelling that held prophetic import. In the same way, Moore can mean stately, or noble, that is its historic meaning, but it sounds like “more.” That is what I believe this prophetic signpost is warning us about. There are more devastating storms, like those that hit Granbury and Moore, coming.

If you live in an area that is prone to tornadoes, it is time to call special prayer meetings to raise the hedges of protection. If you don’t have time for prayer meetings, get on the phone with two or three others and pray in agreement binding any storms from hurting your area of influence. We have authority, but we must use it.

More storms are coming. Satan’s agents want to use them to steal, kill, and destroy. We have the authority to take these tools of destruction out of their hands. We must disarm them, or we will see these storms close up and personal. We must disarm Satan so that the youngest and most vulnerable are no longer victimized by his vile schemes.
——————————————————–

Subscription Notice: I have found that the most dependable way of notifying subscribers of a new post is through email. So I have added an email subscribe option below. Just add your email address and click subscribe (you will receive an email asking you to confirm your subscription—so check your spam folders if you don’t). You will receive an email alert whenever I publish an article. Your emails will be used for no other purpose.


 

Image credits: alphaspirit / 123RF Stock Photo

The Pope Steps Down

PopeBenedict1Last April the Lord told us that Pope Benedict was in the last days of his tenure as pope (See Watch the Pope from April 9, 2012). Today the Pope surprised the Church and the world by his surprise resignation. In his written statement, he states that he will step down on February 28th because his health is no longer up to the rigors of the papal schedule. His move is shocking because he is the first pope to resign in almost six hundred years.

I certainly applaud his deep humility, and his obvious concern that the sheep in his flock get the best possible care. This, perhaps, is why the Lord told us to watch for this event. It is a great example of a shepherd more concerned for the sheep than for himself.

When the Lord told us to watch the pope, he also told us to watch the stands that the pope would take. He has been a fierce advocate of the family, while also opposing gay marriage, abortion, and euthanasia. I look forward with interest to Pope Benedict’s remaining several weeks in office. I will be watching this pope, and listening carefully to what he says.
——————————————————–

Subscription Notice: I have found that the most dependable way of notifying subscribers of a new post is through email. So I have added an email subscribe option below. Just add your email address and click subscribe (you will receive an email asking you to confirm your subscription—so check your spam folders if you don’t). You will receive an email alert whenever I publish an article. Your emails will be used for no other purpose.


 

Another Attack on the Prophetic

AttackLast week I had a disturbing dream and a disturbing experience. The dream involved a Lena Dunham look-alike starring in an advertisement mocking the prophetic. Lena Dunham is the creator and star of the HBO series Girls. I would not have known who she is, except that she did a rather sleazy commercial before the November election comparing voting for Barack Obama with losing your virginity with that “special guy.” It was a morally outrageous commercial aimed at a morally bankrupt subculture. You can imagine that I did not enjoy having someone who looked and acted like her show up in a dream that attacked the prophetic.

The advertisement in the dream mirrored the setting of Miss Dunham’s election commercial. The ad purposed to mock the prophetic by appealing to American independence and self-reliance. The Lena look-alike asked, “Who is more qualified to determine your calling and purpose, you, or someone you don’t know?” While the actress asked the question, the camera cut from her to some rather nondescript, and even slightly disreputable, looking people who represented those who walk in the prophetic. The clear inference of the advertisement is that those who walk in the prophetic attempt to control you, and they aren’t to be trusted.

Of course, there are wicked and evil people who try to control others through revelatory prophecies. That is the stock and trade of mediums and spiritists. However, this is not a picture of biblical prophecy. Biblical prophecy is for strengthening, comfort, and encouragement (see 1 Corinthians 14:3). While this type of prophecy certainly could encourage someone in their calling and purpose, it never attempts to violate a person’s will, nor does it attempt to replace a person’s ability to hear from God for himself or herself. In fact, that is one of the primary purposes of the prophetic, to help people connect with God for themselves.

You can understand why this dream disturbed me. It used a false question to paint the prophetic in a slanderous way, and it did so in a very slick fashion. The dream disturbed me so much that I woke up and could not get back to sleep right away. I meditated a bit on its meaning, and then just when I began to relax back into sleep, I had the disturbing experience. I saw a reddish colored mocking spirit. It was almost in the shape of a ball of fire. It spoke with absolute contempt in its voice as it summed up its feeling for the prophetic, “The prophetic, ha!”

These two things left me with the conviction that we are about to see a renewed attack upon the prophetic. I believe Satan’s kingdom is about to launch targeted strikes against the prophetic. His objective is to neutralize faith in the revelatory, and mock it in such a way that some of God’s people shy away from it. Satan does not want people to hear from God.

After I shared this revelation with my congregation last Friday night, one young man told me about a conference he heard being advertised on a national Christian radio network. The conference will not be held until October, but they are already advertising it today. That is an amazing amount of lead time to advertise a conference, and it reveals how important the conference leaders believe the topic is. When I investigated, I found that several nationally known evangelical ministries are joining together to host this conference. The purpose of the conference is to expose the charismatic movement as a theologically aberrant movement. As part of its advertising it states, “For the last hundred years, the charismatic movement has been offering a strange fire of sorts to the third Person of the Godhead . . . the conference will expose the dangers of offering strange fire—and what the church can do about it.”

As a member of the charismatic movement, I think that description of the conference sounds rather ominous. While the broad sweep of this conference reaches far beyond the prophetic movement, it certainly illustrates and informs the dream and vision that I had last week. Satan is going on the offensive once again, attempting to turn the Church against itself in a civil war.

I can only hope that the organizers of the conference are more moderate in their presentations than they are in their advertising—for their sake. We must remember that the only time that Jesus warned anyone about the sin against the Holy Spirit was when the religious leaders of the day began to describe the works of the Holy Spirit as strange fire (ascribing the Spirit’s work to Satan). This was among the harshest warnings that Jesus gave to the religious teachers and leaders of his day. I personally would be extremely nervous about participating in a conference that purports to look at an entire movement in the Church, and describes its activities as strange fire. If the Holy Spirit is the force behind the movement, or parts of that movement, then those who lead this conference are in an extremely tenuous position before the Lord. I trust that they will not make this grievous mistake.

Of course, conferences such as this are only a small part of Satan’s plan. He has also been specifically attacking the prophetic because so many prophetic voices appeared to prophesy incorrectly about last November’s election results. While we must acknowledge that even our most respected prophets could have been incorrect, we also must leave room for other explanations of this phenomena (see my post entitled The Curve). In the aftermath of the elections, many voices were raised against the prophetic movement in the United States. Satan’s plan is to press his momentary advantage in an attempt to deal the prophetic movement a setback from which it will be difficult to recover.

Fortunately for us (and thus, not so fortunately for Satan’s plans), God has no intention of allowing this to happen. Many of you who read these posts are intercessors. Your prayers will have an impact on Satan’s plans and strategies. While we may not be able to avert the actual campaign against the prophetic, we can provide the prayer support necessary for it to survive and flourish. We can also pray that those who walk in the prophetic, and all those in the charismatic movement, respond to the attacks that Satan is orchestrating with grace and compassion. When the attack comes from within the Church, we can certainly recognize that our brothers and sisters do not know what they are doing. Like Jesus we can forgive, and respond with grace to correct and bless those who curse us.

If we can do this, Satan’s plans will fail, God’s people will mature, and we will all begin to hear on even higher levels.
——————————————————–

Subscription Notice: I have found that the most dependable way of notifying subscribers of a new post is through email. So I have added an email subscribe option below. Just add your email address and click subscribe (you will receive an email asking you to confirm your subscription—so check your spam folders if you don’t). You will receive an email alert whenever I publish an article. Your emails will be used for no other purpose.


 

Image credit: sdmania / 123RF Stock Photo

Revival Tides Are Rising

6924078_mBack in May of 2010 a prophetic friend got a word for me. That word was that the tide of grace was coming in. His actual words were, “I heard the Lord say, ‘The tide is rising and it’s the tide of grace and great grace.'” He added, “It’s almost like in the past we could push so far and the tide comes so far and then it goes back and it just never quite breaks through.  It just never quite overtakes the boundary that we’re used to. I saw the Lord remove that boundary.”

The reason this word is important is that it wasn’t just for me, and it is a now word.

When my prophetic friend gave that word, he called me forward as the first one he saw it for in the room, but he saw it for everyone in the room. We were all part of the same ministry stream, but I believe the application spills beyond our stream to those who have experienced the same type of thing.

I also believe this is a now word. It is for this time. Let me tell you why I believe this.

My congregation is holding a regional conference next week. Rick Joyner, from MorningStar Ministries will be here, as well as other leaders in our ministry stream (information is available at www.revivaltides.com). When I was casting around for a name for the conference, I did not remember the prophetic word I received back in 2010. I was seeking a title to the conference that would encapsulate what the Lord was saying. I felt a release of grace was coming that would help revive us, but when I began to think of conference titles with the word revival in it, it seemed like all the good ones had been taken. Then the Lord dropped Revival Tides into my spirit, and I named the conference the Revival Tides Are Rising conference. I was happy I had found our conference name.

Then, on Monday of this week, the Crimson Tide rolled into South Florida and demolished Notre Dame in the nationally televised BCS Championship game. To say the Tide rolled in is an understatement. If you are were not an Alabama fan, the game wasn’t all that fun because there was no drama. Alabama took an early lead and built it into a 42-14 victory. They dominated the game.

A few days after the game, another prophetic friend let me know that she believed the game was a message to us. She said, “The tide is coming in.” Then she tied what she said to our conference next week.

I thought that was all pretty interesting, but didn’t put everything together until the Lord nudged my wife, Dawn, about this. He reminded her of the 2010 word to me. Of course, when she looked it up, we began to see that the Lord was up to something. Back in 2010 he gave us a word about the tide of God’s grace coming in and breaking through all the boundaries. We are holding a conference with that same theme, and this week Alabama, the Crimson Tide, punctuated it all with its decisive win in South Florida. I believe the Lord is up to something.

I am really looking forward to see what he begins to unleash. I know our conference is part of it, but I also know that the Lord is splashing his grace around on the body of Christ right now. It is an important time. If you have time next week (January 17th-19th), you may want to come to our conference. You might get wet.

www.revivaltides.com
——————————————————–

Subscription Notice: I have found that the most dependable way of notifying subscribers of a new post is through email. So I have added an email subscribe option below. Just add your email address and click subscribe (you will receive an email asking you to confirm your subscription—so check your spam folders if you don’t). You will receive an email alert whenever I publish an article. Your emails will be used for no other purpose.


 

Image credit: Sergey Galushko / 123RF Stock Photo