Monday, June 27, 2011

The Best Discovery To Make

As I was driving back from last week's photo shoot and thinking about the release of my second book, my mind began to wander. Has my first book made that much of an impact on people's lives? Why do I think my second book will? Have I spent all of this time working on the writing structure and pouring my heart into sharing spiritual insights for it all to be wasted? After mulling over this uncertainty for several hours, the Holy Spirit reminded me of Moses' burning bush experience.

Moses was tending sheep when he went to Horeb, the mountain of God (also called Mount Sinai, where he would be given the Ten Commandments much later). Moses' first step gives insight that he was looking for answers in going to the mountain of God. Moses saw the burning bush and looked deeper.

God spoke to Moses through the burning bush and told Moses he had been chosen to lead the children of Israel out of Egyptian slavery. But Moses began to doubt. In Exodus 3:11 Moses asked, "Who am I, that I should go to Pharaoh and bring the Israelites out of Egypt?" God responded in verse 12, "I will be with you." God's answer wasn't good enough for Moses so he pressed in further. It's almost like you can hear Moses saying, "That's all nice and kind of you, God, but I need to know how I'm supposed to explain this to your stubborn children. You've gotta give me something else to get their attention." God cleared it up for him in verse 13, "God said to Moses, 'I AM WHO I AM'.."

You can be fired from your position. Your performance can fail. Your popularity can fall. Your possessions can fade. When this happens, you better know who you are in Christ. Just like Moses did, the best question we can ask is "who am I?" But the best discovery we can make is who God is.

God wanted wanted to change the world through Moses--and He did-- but God had to change Moses first. God has not changed in His pursuit of a personal, intimate, transparent relationship with His children.

God is ready to change the world around you through you, but He has to change you first. Discover who He is today.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Finally Friday!

This week I had a few fun days shooting the cover picture of my next book set to release in October. Photographer Clay Spann in Dothan, Alabama shot my first cover and I wanted him to do the next one as well. What girl doesn't enjoy someone else doing her hair and makeup? Here are some behind-the-scenes snap shots:

This morning from 10:15am-11am (Central Time), I'll be interviewed by Marvin Sanders & Tim Wildmon on "Today's Issues" on American Family Radio. If you want to know which station is your local AFR radio station, click here for a list of their national affiliates. Just click "station list".

The Lord has taught me quite a bit this week about positioning in Christ. I hope to share that with you Monday!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Barbie is away shooting the cover for her next book. She will return this Friday. Enjoy your week and keep the Son shining in your life!

Friday, June 17, 2011

Those Comments

Have you ever gotten one of THOSE emails--the kind that hurts your feelings and makes your smile drop? With the advent of social media, we are all more accessible through email, Facebook and Twitter. Someone is always offering "constructive" criticism (is there really such a thing?) or making a comment about you that cuts to the core. Immediately, you feel the need to defend yourself.

Some of the criticism lately involves my hair, my clothes, wearing a cross necklace and not to mention, a peanut butter stain on my pants given by one of my kids' good-bye kiss--thanks to the viewer who HAD to point it out to me, just in case I didn't know.

The next time someone offers you some friendly advice on how YOU need to change, here are several things to keep in mind:

1) Not every critic needs a reply, especially when they are sent anonymously. Don't let their comment derail you from the position God has placed you in and concentrate on that. Satan likes to throw stones and hide. Even more so, he enjoys using Christians to do his dirty work. 1 Peter 2:15 says, "For it is God's will that by doing good you should silence the ignorant talk of foolish men."

2) Respond in the spirit and not in the flesh. It is so much easier to hurl an insult back, isn't it? When people say hurtful things to you or about you, they are dealing with something much bigger in their own life. Hurting people hurt other people, so don't take it personally. 1 Peter 2:23 says, "When they hurled their insults at Jesus, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats. Instead he entrusted himself to him who judges justly." God sees. God knows who is honoring Him, so leave room for His wrath.

3) Show mercy to the offender. How many times have I said something that didn't come out quite the way I wanted? Then again, maybe it did and I've found myself needing forgiveness. If it hasn't happened in your own life yet, one day you will need mercy from someone who you have hurt deeply. The only way to receive it when you need it is to practice showing mercy to those who have hurt us. Psalm 103:17 says, "But the mercy of the LORD is from everlasting to everlasting upon them that fear him and his righteousness unto children's children."

Monday, June 13, 2011

Is Your Soul Prospering?

Everyone wants to be blessed but fewer want to be obedient.

God told Abram (later to be called Abraham) in Genesis 12:2 "I will make your name great and you will be a blessing." God not only wants to bless you but He wants you to be a blessing to others around you! And many times, God will bless you just to see what you'll do with it.

I dearly love each one of my children. I will do everything I can for their good. But some of my blessings are based upon their obedience. Some of the blessings they want may not be what I deem to be good for them, so sometimes I have to protect them from what they may want. Why? Because I know how they'll use it if I were to give it to them.

The devil has blinded the world so much when it comes to the Lord's blessings. The world seems more concerned with what they'll have to give up instead of what they'll gain.

Proverbs 10:22 says, "The blessing of the LORD brings wealth, and he adds no trouble to it." When God blesses your soul, you have peace in the middle of crisis.

God is a covenant God. He has not changed since the day He made a promise to Abram. Allow Him to prosper your soul today!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Coincidence or Intentional?

Earlier this year, I commited to giving offerings during the 3 Jewish festivals: Passover, Shavuot & Sukkot.

This week, Shavuot was celebrated in Israel. And, you've probably noticed increased violence in the Middle East over the last few days, too.

When you deal with the church, you're dealing with God's grace. But when you deal with Israel, retribution is swift because it is the apple of God's eye. Despite what we may think about Israel and their actions, they cannot be intellectually understood but are to be discerned. And should our leaders and President mishandle Israel, America will pay the price. Don't take my word for it--read the Bible for yourself.

God is not a happen-stance God, nor a God of coincidence. He is, however, intentional

An article written in World Net Daily was passed on to me last week. You can see it here by clicking on this link. Although the natural disasters may not be related, the author certainly makes an interesting argument. I've also pasted it below.

Bible prophecy may have a bad name in the light of Harold Camping's misguided date-setting, but the biggest sign of the end may have been overlooked in all the rapture hysteria of last weekend.

Once again, we've seen the U.S. hit with a series of deadly superstorms following Barack Obama's pledge to return Israel to pre-1967 borders.

Just days after Obama insisted Israel must give up lands it won through military victory with its enemies, some 200 people were killed by a tornado in Joplin, Mo.

There's a pattern here.

We saw it in Katrina, when George Bush forced Israel's withdrawal from Gaza. In fact, as everyone from Israeli rabbis to U.S. senators have noted, it seems to happen every single time the U.S. pressures Israel to divide the land.

The phenomenon was best documented by Bill Koenig, author of "Eye to Eye: Facing the Consequences of Dividing Israel."

Koenig points out that nine of the 10 costliest insurance events in U.S. history followed dramatic calls by U.S. officials for Israel to make land concessions in bids for peace with its neighbors. He points out with startling detail how six of the seven costliest hurricanes in U.S. history followed such events. He points out how three of the four largest tornado outbreaks in U.S. history followed such developments.

Earthquakes, hurricanes, tornadoes, even terrorist attacks have hit America often within 24 hours of calls by U.S. officials for Israel to withdraw from Jewish land.

What does this have to do with prophecy?

It goes right back to Genesis and God's pledge to bless those who bless the children of Israel and curse those who curse them.

That is a prophecy that has seen every empire of the world come and go – yet Israel remains. It may be chastened by God. It may be dispersed. It may be divided according to His will. But God has punished every nation that has come against Israel. Each one has been judged.

You can choose to believe it or not. It won't make any difference.

But he that touches the apple of God's eye will pay a price: "For thus saith the LORD of hosts; After the glory hath he sent me unto the nations which spoiled you: for he that toucheth you toucheth the apple of his eye." – Zechariah 2:8

If you want to understand prophecy, don't listen to Harold Camping – keep your eye on Israel and study your Bible.

In God's economy, there is Israel and then there are the other nations.

It was through Israel He chose to reveal Himself to the world – eventually through the birth, life, death and resurrection of His own Son.

And His Son is coming back to reign as King of Kings and Lord of Lords. It's no surprise where He will return and where He will reign – in Jerusalem.

Trying to understand God and His Son Yeshua apart from Israel is a tall order – because that's how He revealed Himself to us.

His ways are not our ways, and our ways are not His ways.

We can only understand Him through His revelation.

I don't know exactly what date He will be coming back.

I'm not sure exactly when He is going to call out His children.

But I do know it's near.

I know it's near because Israel has been rebirthed as a nation – a prerequisite that simply wasn't in place until 63 years ago.

The Bible predicts all kind of turbulence and chaos surrounding Israel in the latter days. It will nearly be destroyed. But Israel's long-awaited Messiah will save it. He will destroy Israel's enemies. He will reign for 1,000 years.

As Zechariah 12:8-10 reveals: "In that day shall the LORD defend the inhabitants of Jerusalem; and he that is feeble among them at that day shall be as David; and the house of David shall be as God, as the angel of the LORD before them.

"And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem.

"And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn."

And one shall ask Him, "What are these wounds in thine hands? Then he shall answer, Those with which I was wounded in the house of my friends" (Zechariah 13:6).

Monday, June 6, 2011

Don't Be a Giant Offender, But A Giant Killer

I wrote last Friday how I'm tired of wimpy prayers. I'm wanting the spirit of might to rest upon me.

You and I are not called to be a giant offender but a giant killer.

When David set out to face Goliath, he didn't care whether or not he offended the giant--he was there to take care of him once and for all. David said in 1 Samuel 17:45-47, "You come at me with sword and spear and javelin, but I come against you in the name of the Lord Almighty, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. This day the Lord will hand you over to me, and I'll strike you down and cut off your head. Today I will give the carcasses of the Philistine army to the birds of the air and the beasts of the earth, and the whole world will know that there is a God in Israel. All those gathered here will know that it is not by sword or spear that the LORD saves, for the battle is the LORD's, and he will give all of you into our hands."

The iron shaft on the end of Goliath's spear weighed 15 pounds alone. Anyone willing to kill a giant who has that is no wimp, friend! But David had the spirit of might on him.

God gives us circumstances, or giants, to practice on every day. If David would've been scared off by the lion and the bear when he was younger, he wouldn't have been able to face a giant later in life.

So, how do you stand in the face of adversity? You ask God to give you the spirit of might.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Authority in Prayer

I'm tired of wimpy, namby-pamby prayers.

Mark 1:22 says, "The people were amazed at his (Jesus') teaching, because he taught them as one who had authority.." Some people mistake authority for loudness or being boisterous. When you speak with authority, you have power; what you say backs up who you are. You truly KNOW what you know!

When Joshua prayed, his prayers had authority only because Joshua had an intimate relationship with God and the Holy Spirit knew it! Joshua 10 tells the story of when the sun stood still. Word had gotten around to the Amorite kings how successful Joshua had been at Jericho. When the kings of the Amorite cities heard Joshua had made friends with the people of Gibeon, they became worried because they knew how big Gibeon's army was. So the king of Jerusalem, Adoni-Zedek, convinced the other kings to join him and attack the city of Gibeon.

Joshua received word from the people in Gibeon that they were being attacked and needed help and Joshua headed west with his army to assist. God told Joshua not to worry, that He would defeat the Amorites for him. God rained large hail stones on the Amorites and many of them died without even being touched by a sword. But Joshua needed a bit more time to defeat the last remaining fighters. Allow me to let my imagination take over for a second....

God, we've almost got the devil whooped, but it's getting late in the day and we need to get this over and done with before it gets dark. Can you give me a little more time and do something for me?

Joshua prayed in verse 12, "O sun, stand still over Gibeon, O moon, over the Valley of Aijalon." And God stopped the universe just for Josh to give him more daylight! Verse 14 says, "There has never been a day like it before or since, a day when the LORD listened to a man. Surely the LORD was fighting for Israel!"

Joshua already had the spirit of wisdom. You can read about his early beginnings as a spy for Moses and the children of Israel and see wisdom written all over him. But Joshua also had the spirit of might. How did he get these? By spending time with God, being led by the Holy Spirit and asking for it!

So, I'm no longer praying "sissy-fied" prayers. I'm praying with authority for wisdom and might!