ALIVE

Jesus is ALIVE.

We serve a LIVING GOD.

He lives in me, in us.

That means: Jesus is here.  Right now.

Whenever we enter a room, He enters that room, too.  Whenever we walk into a building, He walks into that building.  We are the highest spiritual authority in these places because we have Him LIVING in us.

Wherever we go we bring with us opportunities for any & everyone we meet to know, experience & come in contact with the Living God.

We are the carriers of His Presence.

We are the carriers of: His Spirit, His life, His healing, His love, His joy, His strength, His mercy, His grace, His power.  It all comes with us wherever we go.  Do you not see the implications of this truth?

It is up to us to release these things to elicit change, to set right what is wrong, to restore what has been broken and stolen by the enemy, to bring light into dark places, to demolish lies and deceit, to reconcile those God loves to God Himself so that they, too, can live, so they can come fully alive and become a carrier of His DNA: Divine Nature of the Almighty.  We leave traces of our natural DNA every time we touch something or someone…wouldn’t the same be true of our new spiritual DNA?  Touch someone and leave a trace of God with them.

THIS is who we are.

And this is to Whom we belong.

He lives.

Jesus….Our King.

To Him be the Glory forever.

Blessings,

Miranda

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Sacred Cows and “Christianese:” Part 1

I know most of you have heard of the phrase “sacred cows,” but what about “Christianese?”  What the heck is that?  It’s a language “owned” by Christians, clichés and phrases that are on the lips of most church-going people that, on the surface may sound holy and pious and Christian, but when you break down these clichés and phrases and pit them against scripture and the Word of God, you’ll see that they are really quite unbiblical and actually hold Christians back from the truth of who they are and what they have in Christ.  It keeps them held to a lower standard and therefore the enemy still has them in bondage in some fashion.

Today I would like to kick over and destroy the sacred cow/Christianese saying:

“God works in mysterious ways”

DISCLAIMER: You should ALWAYS line everything up with scripture!  Yes, even those funny little phrases and sayings because you are re-presenting Christ and God to the world and you should be speaking what God and His Word says in the right context.  It’s not about you and your experiences!  It’s about God’s Word!

First of all, “God works in mysterious ways” is not in the Bible.  (As my friend Don Allen would say, it’s in 1st Imaginations!)  Actually when you do a search for the word “mysterious” in the Bible, it comes up with ZERO hits.  NADA.  When you search out the word “mystery” the first occurrence of it does not show up until the New Testament in Mark 4:11, which reads:

“And He said unto them, Unto you it is given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God: but unto them that are without, all these things are done in parables.”

Hmmm….did you get that?  UNTO YOU IT IS GIVEN TO KNOW THE MYSTERY OF THE KINGDOM OF GOD.  I didn’t read anything in there that says “Gods ways are a mystery and to you they always shall be and hence they shall remain.”

In Romans 16 Paul says that the revelation of the mystery which was kept secret since the beginning is NOW MADE MANIFEST  (manifest:  RENDER APPARENT).  I’ve heard it said that the Old Testament is the New Testament concealed and the New Testament is the Old Testament revealed.

What else does the Bible say about God and His “mysteries?”

Eph. 1:8-9– “Wherein He hath abounded toward us in all wisdom and prudence;  Having made known unto us the mystery of his will, according to His good pleasure which He hath purposed in Himself.”

Eph. 3:3-5,9  “How that by revelation He made known unto me the mystery; (as I wrote afore in few words,  Whereby, when ye read, ye may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ), Which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men, as it is now revealed unto His holy apostles and prophets by the SpiritAnd to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ.”

Eph. 6:19 “And for me, that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my mouth boldly, to make known the mystery of the gospel.”

Col 1:26-27  “Even the mystery which hath been hid from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to His saints: To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.”

All of these scriptures clearly state that yes, through Christ Jesus the mystery that was concealed has now been revealed unto His people.  (And before you say that it was for just the apostles and prophets and all these things died with death of last apostle, I’d say, show me scripture and verse for that please)  WE ARE HIS SAINTS.  We are His people.  We are His dwelling place.  We’ve been given His Spirit!  Holy Spirit abides in us and what He did for Jesus He’ll do for us!

1Co 2:7,9-12  “But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory. But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.  But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God. For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God. Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.”

This basically says that no one can know God except the Spirit but now that very Spirit lives in us!  And if the Spirit that knows God lives in us then we can know God and the things of God because we are now His people!  And a few lines later the scripture then goes on to say that “WE HAVE THE MIND OF CHRIST!”

There are several scriptures that talk about the Holy Spirit and how He shows us, teaches us, reveals to us, leads us, guides us into ALL truth.

John even boldly states: “But ye have an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things.” 1 John 2:20 (unction:  chrisma – an unguent or smearing, that is, (figuratively) the special endowment (“chrism”) of the Holy Spirit: – anointing, unction.)

So how can we then state with confidence that GOD works in mysterious ways?  I believe it’s a complete lack of relationship and intimate fellowship with God, Jesus and Holy Spirit.  It’s not knowing who you are and what you’ve been given in Christ, your inheritance, the power, the restoration, the gifts that ARE YOURS just for being His.  It’s a lack of power in the body and therefore man had to make up some kind of reason for defeat and powerlessness.

Many bad doctrines and theologies have been formed out of a lack in the body, out of circumstances (which we like to call “circumstantial theology”).  NEVER FORM YOUR THEOLOGY IN THE MIDDLE OF A CRISIS!  Because then you get sayings like this that have no basis in scripture and they become roadblocks to victory and excuses for not trying (sorry, some there is some serious laziness in the body!  Get up and look into it for yourself!)!  Stop throwing your hands up and shifting the responsibility (ahem, blame) on God!  You are CO-LABORERS with Him!  He already gave you all you’ll ever need, so what have you done with it, brethren?  Stop waiting for God to move, He’s already done His part, He’s just now waiting for YOU!!!

So, God does NOT work in mysterious ways.  It’s all made plain in the Word and if you need wisdom, brothers and sisters, ASK!

Jas 1:5-8 “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord. A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.”

It’s either one or the other, it cannot be both.  So which do you choose to believe?

Get to know Him.  It’s totally worth the effort.

In Christ,

Miranda

The Hem of the Garment

For so long, too long maybe, I’ve equated myself with the woman with the issue of blood.  Have you ever done that?  Related yourself with one of the many that cried out to Jesus, sought Him for a touch, a healing, some deliverance?  Have you ever thought to yourself, “Maybe if I cry out the louder like blind Bartimaeus, I’ll finally get freed of…..?” (insert your personal affliction here) Or “Maybe if my faith was greater my faith would make me whole….”

There’s something in my life, my body, that I’ve been wanting to be freed of.  Something that has, quite honestly, tormented me for the last 35 years.  Something that I’ve recently decided to, beyond a shadow of a doubt, be freed from.  To stand unwavering for.  And as I was doing my hair and making my “faith declarations,” an image of the woman with the issue of blood came to mind.  I pictured her crawling through the crowds on her hands and knees, sneaking her way towards Jesus, weaving between dirty, sandal-covered feet, dust and sand being kicked up into her face as the multitudes thronged Jesus, the whole time saying to herself, “If I may but touch….I will be….”

But then His voice broke in and interrupted my imaginations:  “Are you not wearing a robe now?  Why do you need to ‘touch it’ daughter when you yourself are clothed in something far better and far greater?”  That stopped me in my tracks.  And He began to unravel a truth to me.

He told me that at that moment in that story with the woman, He was just a man in a robe, filled with the Holy Spirit.  (Oh, I know what you’re thinking: blasphemy!  How can you call Jesus just a man???)  But He was the SON OF MAN, who made Himself of no reputation (Phil. 2:7-8; in the Greek it means make empty, abase, neutralize) and had to come as a man to reclaim our stolen authority and dominion.  But I digress…

See, at that time He hadn’t yet laid down His life, shed His blood, the sacrifice hadn’t been made, He hadn’t died & risen, the firstfruits offering had yet to be given…and therefore He hadn’t yet sent His Spirit to abide in His people.  There was no redemption, no reconciliation, no restoration.  He was training His disciples how to go and be and do what He was doing and being, so that they could carry out the legacy once He died and He was no longer physically on the Earth.  He came not only to redeem to but SHOW what the New Creature was supposed to look, speak, act and live like.  He came as our example.

But, once He did die & rise again, once He did send His Spirit, everything changed.

Now there was reconciliation, restoration, salvation, redemption and RECREATION.  Now there was ADOPTION into the Kingdom to become Sons & Daughters.

And now, He said to me, now as a child of the kingdom there is NO reason any longer for me (or any one of us) to relate to that woman, or blind Bartimaeus, or the leper…there was no reason for us to think of ourselves as crawling on our hands and knees towards Him for healing or deliverance.  It’s already been given to us.  It’s our inheritance as Sons.  All that the kingdom has is ours and it’s His good pleasure to give it to us (Luke 12:32).  We have been raised up into the highest position: seated with Christ in heavenly places (Ephesians 2:6).  We are right there, with Jesus, seated at the right hand of the Father!  And yet we picture ourselves crawling and begging and crying out.

We wear the garments of kings and priests because that’s who we are now.  (1 Peter 2:9; Revelation 1:6; Revelation 5:10)

He told me that I (we) now wear a robe – the robe of righteousness!  We are wearing the garment of salvation!  It’s already on us, brethren!  ( I will greatly rejoice in the LORD, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels. Isaiah 61:10).  It’s the garment that speaks of “christos,” the anointing of the Holy One Himself upon us as HIS BODY here on earth!

But even better than that, He said that I (we) are clothed in Christ Himself!  “For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.”  Galatians 3:27 (“put on” in the Greek means sinking into a garment, to invest with clothing).  The Greater One lives on the inside of us!  (1 John 4:4)  That I have been endued with power from on high, that I am a temple of the living God, that I house the Spirit of Christ Himself within me….(1 Corinthians 3:16)

And armed with these truths, not only do I not need to position myself with that woman to receive anything of God, but that now, as His temple, as Christ’s body and physical representation on this earth, that people can/should  touch ME and MY garments and be healed and set free.  (I can hear your thoughts:  WOAH, you said.  Bordering on blasphemy again)…but what else are we here for?  He said: “And as ye go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand. Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give.”  (Matthew 10:7-8) See?  His disciples already had their freedom, their deliverance.  Now THEY were to go and give it to others.

All that He came to do, WE’RE to do.  (Mark 16:17-20; Matthew 28:18-20)

He keeps saying to me:  Come up higher, come in closer.  And not that I’m not already there (spiritually) but that I need to get there in MY MIND, to really get and grasp who  I am & what I have as  His.  He’s just waiting for me, for all of us, to realize who we really are now, for us to recognize that reflection of Sonship and Christ-likeness when we see ourselves.  All the earth is groaning, waiting for the Sons of God to manifest (Romans 8:19) because WE hold their freedom in our hands (Matthew 10:7) and we carry the kingdom within us (Luke 17:21).

So get up, rise up, stand up, take your place, know who you are, know WHOSE you are.

Come up higher, come in closer….

What are you waiting for?

Blessings,

Miranda B. mary

Choices

What kind of people do you prefer in positions of power and authority and importance?

Take a king, for example.  Would you put into a position of power and authority someone with no backbone?  Someone who is fragile, who can’t make sound judgments, whose thinking is muddied?  Someone who listens to those who don’t have their best interest at heart, who themselves are clouded and deceived?  How about a representative with no nobility or sense of self-worth?  How about someone who made justifications for their failures and shortcomings, who always pointed a finger of blame at someone else and never took responsibility for themselves?  How about someone who ruled with their feelings & emotions, based on whether or not they were feeling magnanimous that day or who took out their bad mood on everyone else?  Who let circumstances rule and dictate their lives and decisions?

Or would you want someone who was level-headed, who upheld the laws of the land for the benefit of those whom they were chosen to represent?  Someone who could do hard things, make fixed decisions not based on what others think or feel but by what was right and true, no matter who would deride them or criticize them or lie to them, no matter who would try to deceive them to get them to change their minds and falter from their position?  Someone who ruled and reigned with dignity, love, compassion and virtue?  Who knew truth and stuck to it no matter how they felt or what the situation or conditions were surrounding them?

What about a holy person…would you want a spiritual representative who lived however they wanted?  With no sense of true righteousness, sanctification or holiness?  What if they spoke and acted like those who are outside of the ministry?  Swearing, complaining, grumbling, murmuring, gossiping, backbiting, and criticizing?  Would you want someone who has no understanding of scripture?  Who has no real idea of the true nature of God, who maybe at best has a half-hearted relationship with the Lord, who takes no time to seek the Him, to know Him and His Word and to love Him?  (This person IS supposed to be Christ’s ambassador to you, now, don’t forget.)  Would you want someone who exalts and puts the world’s wisdom above God truth?

Or would you want someone who takes the lives of others seriously?  Who cared for the well-being of their fellow man above themselves and took great care to really know God, love God, get revelation about His Word and His truth so that they can, like Jesus, preach and teach with great authority, with the ability and power to set others free just like Jesus ordained them to do?  To be a true representation of Christ to others?

How about soldiers…those commissioned to be on the frontlines of war?  Would you put soldiers on the battlefield who were weak and fearful?  Who couldn’t hold their ground when the enemy came in hot?  Would you want a soldier on the frontline who ignored the enemy or who maybe threw half-hearted threats his way but then would turn tail and retreat when the enemy made an attempt or attacked in return?

What if the enemy captured your child?  Or your husband?  Or you?  What kind of soldier would you want fighting for you then?  Would you want one with fire or fear in their eyes?  Would you want soldiers who are stout-hearted, who, though they may feel fearful in the moment, in the heat of war, were still unwilling to turn and run?  Who would press on and in anyhow despite the dread, who would instead advance on the enemy, who would not give up or give in until they took back the territory that was stolen, until the prisoners of war were reclaimed and set free and reconciled?  People who were not afraid to get dirty, whose hands are scarred and calloused and bruised and bloodied from constantly knocking back the enemy forces, ensuring safety and protection?

Do you have your answer?

Okay, now let me ask: which category do YOU fall in?

You see, if you are born-again, if you are a “Christian,” a follower of Christ then you are:

1:  A king
2:  A priest
3:  A soldier
4:  An ambassador of Christ.

“And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.”  Revelation 1:6

“But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:” 1 Peter 2:9

“Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.” 1 Timothy 2:3

“Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God.”  2 Corinthians 5:20

Do you see yourself this way?  Did you even know that this was who you now are?  First and foremost you are a son, and as a son you are given an inheritance, the Kingdom of God.

“And I appoint unto you a kingdom, as my Father hath appointed unto me.”  Luke 22:29

And as a son you are given a position in the kingdom and these are positions of privilege and importance that are not to be taken lightly or flippantly and they are not OPTIONAL!  (Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you .Matthew 28:20)  THIS is who you are.  Sons and daughters, adopted into the family of God, with rights and privileges, an inheritance that can’t be calculated or measured, given an assignment by Christ Himself with His authority and power, to rule, to reign, to represent, to fight and take back and reconcile and set free.

It is for the HERE AND NOW, not just for a future inheritance or freedom (why do we need the gifts of the Spirit, the blood, the Name, the Word, Holy Spirit Himself and the armor in the “afterlife”?).  The Lord’s Prayer says, “Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.”  It doesn’t say “You’ll have to wait until you get to heaven to experience it.”  He said, BRING IT HERE TO THE EARTH.  How?  Through co-laboring with Him, by being the temple of the Living God, carrying His Presence in us, with us, being baptized in His Spirit.   How many times did Jesus say “Go to the people and tell them that the kingdom of heaven is AT HAND.  Heal the sick, cast out demons, raise the dead!”??

We’re called to rule & reign (kings), be carriers of His Presence (priests), called to fight the good fight of faith and to go and repossess the gates of hell, reclaim what the enemy has stolen, setting free all those who are prisoners of war (soldiers).  And we cannot do any of that if we are not sure, firm, set, steadfast, established, fully convinced, separated, sanctified, pressing in, living not just for Him but FROM Him, knowing who we are and all that we possess as His children.  We cannot turn tail and run when the enemy strikes.  We cannot allow ourselves to be moved or persuaded by outside sources or the enemy.  We have to stand firm and strong against all opposition even if it means being uncomfortable or persecuted or ridiculed and no matter what things LOOK like in the natural.  We cannot live from feelings and emotions, letting circumstances and situations dictate our beliefs.  We cannot form theology and doctrine based on the failures of man, or blame God for what didn’t come to pass (i.e. the “God is Sovereign” doctrine or “If it be Thy will” prayers). We cannot live and talk as the world lives and talks.  We must look different, live different.  People should take one look at you and know that SOMETHING is different about you.  You should exude light and life because that light and life should be living in you.

Brothers and sisters know this:  we are not just in this for ourselves.  We are in it for those out there suffering, in bondage, broken-hearted, sick, suicidal, lost, alone.  We  are in this to bring what we have been freely given to those who need it.  All that you are learning in the Lord, all that you are going through in your faith-fight is NOT just for yourself and maybe your family.  It’s for the world, friends.

So, I ask again: which one are you?  But more importantly, which do you wish to be?

Blessings,

Miranda

Healed of Cancer & Divine Appointments

I shop at Wegmans…a lot.  I am there sometimes two or three times a week.  And, yes, I have prayed for some people there, sometimes in the aisles, sometimes in the breezeway.  I walk away not ever seeing them again and wondering how they are.

A few months ago, on a Friday morning, I stopped there on my way to work to get my morning latte and as I was walking up to the store I “just happened” to notice a man walking across the parking lot, limping.  (When I say “just happened” what I mean is the Holy Spirit caused me to see him.)  My first thought was “Man, I would love to see him healed.”  And immediately this mocking voice comes crashing in (wonder who that could be) saying “Well, go ahead, sister Christian, go heal him then, you really think you can?  C’mon, go on, do it…”  All laced with doubt and sarcasm.  I told the voice to zip it and went in to get my coffee.  I was in there for about 10 minutes and as I was walking out I look to my left and see that very man walking right beside me.

Now I KNEW.

I say hi and start making small talk with him.  We stop outside and chit chat for a few minutes and finally I say “Listen, what can I pray for you for?  I want to pray for you.  What do you need prayer for?”  I wasn’t expecting what came out of his mouth.  He said “I have cancer. I’ve been struggling with it for 15 years.”  My heart burst with compassion for him but also with love for God because He brought this man to my attention for a reason.  He said that the doctors were concerned about it going into his bones.  I said “Uh-uh, no way, Jesus is going to take care of that.”  I pulled him over to the side and dropped my stuff to the ground and put my hand right over his heart and right there spoke healing, rebuked the cancer, commanded life.

When I was finished I think he was a little flabbergasted and he thanked me, telling me that he had an appointment the following Wednesday.  What timing!  I told him I hoped to see him again to hear that good report.  As I walked to my car, I praised the Lord and thanked Him for healing “R.”  The enemy of course tried to come in with doubt, but I spoke God’s Word…I said “God Your word says if I lay hands on the sick they WILL recover, and I know You are true to Your word, so I believe he IS healed.”  For the next week I took time every day to thank God that “R” was healed, and asked to see him again.

A few weeks later, I made a trip to Wegmans.  I don’t usually go on Monday’s but I decided to go pick up a few things anyhow.  Once there I ran into a friend I hadn’t seen in a while and when we get together we TALK!  I mean, for a while!  So after we caught up, I got my stuff and cashed out.  As I was getting ready to leave, I flip-flop over whether or not to get a coffee and decide what the heck…and who do I see at the buffet on the way there?  “R.”  I was thrilled.  I asked how he was and he said he was ok.  I asked about the doctors and he said they were going to do scans on him to check his “status.”  I said (with total enthusiasm) “Hey, don’t worry, you are going to be just fine.  I know it.  I have no doubts!”  I gave him some encouragement and walked out thanking God again for the opportunity to see him and to be able to reassure him.

So, today, I had a hair appointment at 11:00.  There were a few things I wanted to grab (yes, at Wegmans) and considered going after my appointment but for “some reason” (ahem, Holy Spirit) I felt the urge to go beforehand.  I walked in and headed right for the fresh baked bread and who was standing there in that very spot?  “R.”  I walked up to him and started chatting him up (he is a very quiet and soft-spoken person).  Then I asked, “How are you?  You doing okay?  You been to the doctors?”  He said he had his scans done.  I asked, “And..”

And he said “They were all negative.”  Oh yes, glory to God!  I had to contain myself so as not to freak out my friend.

I said “So you’re all good?”

“For now,” he said.

I said “Oh no, for good!”

“I hope so,” he replied.

“No, you ARE!  Because it’s done and He loves you!”  And then I went on to tell him how I had prayed to the Lord to see him again so I could hear for myself his good report.  I wanted so much to convey to him hope and the love of God for him because he’d been living with this for so long that’s all he knew.  I hugged him and invited him to come see me at work sometime….because I really would love more opportunity to share the love of God with him.

I cried all the way to my hair appointment, for the goodness of the Lord, for “R” and his healing, for God hearing my heart and leading me to those “divine appointments” of seeing him all those times and couldn’t help but to see Holy Spirit’s leading and timing through every one.

And this is the life I want to live….His life lived through me, what He’s given to me I get to go and give.  “And as ye go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand. Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give.” (Matthew 10:7-8)  He told me “Daughter, you don’t NEED healing, you HAVE healing.  You have what they need.  So go.”

To Him be the glory.

Thank You, Lord.  With all my heart.

God bless,

Miranda

What were you thinking?

The enemy works so hard at attacking your mind, your thoughts, your imagination, because he knows that it’s the place where seeds are planted and grown, where things begin to form and take shape, where, when things considered and entertained long enough, BECOME.

Your thoughts transform you.  First comes the thought, then the emotions and actions follow.  If the enemy can keep your thoughts & imagination under his influence and rule, if he can keep planting & implanting his dirty seeds, if he is allowed to keep feeding the mind with lies, then we become those things because we believe them.

If he tells you your worthless and you believe that, you live out that belief in the way you act and speak and live.  If he tells you you’re unloved, hopeless, sick, diseased, stupid, whatever lies he speaks, if you allow it and believe it, that will be the reality that you live out.

It’s scientifically proven that thoughts can change your DNA, your genetics, that they affect your body, your digestion, your hormones & chemistry.  (For a good in-depth book about this I suggest “Switch on Your Brain” by Caroline Leaf, M.D.)  You quite literally become what you think, which only serves to back up God’s Word.

Proverbs 23:7A says “For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he.”  (The Hebrew definition for “thinketh” is: A primitive root; to split or open, that is, to act as gate keeper.)

God’s word tells you the importance of your thought-life and what you believe and the power it holds.

Genesis 11:6  “And the LORD said, Behold, the people is one, and they have all one language; and this they begin to do: and now nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do.”

Proverbs 4:23 “Keep (guard) thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life.” (The heart in the scriptures encompasses your soulish areas, mind, thoughts, will, emotions.  What you house/harbor there comes out in your life, you live it out.)

Mark 9:23 “Jesus said unto him, If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth.” (You believe with your mind)

Matthew 21:21 “Jesus answered and said unto them, Verily I say unto you, If ye have faith, and doubt not, ye shall not only do this which is done to the fig tree, but also if ye shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; it shall be done.”

Mark 11:23-24 “For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith. Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.”  (Note: first you think it, believe it, with no doubt, and then you speak what you believe and what you have faith in shall come to pass.)

And Satan knows the importance of these principles.  Like I’ve said before, he knows spiritual principles better that most believers and he loves nothing more than to use those very laws and people’s ignorance of them against them.  This is why he works hard to subdue your mind, keep your thoughts under his dominion.  He will constantly buffet and bombard your thoughts and imagination to drive it home, to get you to give in and receive & believe his lies, to make it become your reality.

Now you’re giving life to the seed, which if left unchecked will only give birth to corruption and you will then live out a lie.

God’s Word is the incorruptible seed that tells us the truth of who were are, reveals to us that we are created in God’s image & likeness, that God gave us dominion & authority, and that even though we gave it away, that Jesus came to redeem us and restore us to our rightful place as sons of God.  That when we are born-again, we become engrafted into God’s family, our dominion restored, our authority is inherited, bequeathed to us by our Testator, Jesus.  That we are loved, saved, healed, victors, conquerors, ambassadors, temples of the living God and therefore we are LIFE BRINGERS!

Think now, why does the enemy work so hard to steal this seed, this truth, from us the second it’s sown?  To keep us in doubt and unbelief and fear and what-if’s, because he knows the danger, oh yes, the danger that truth realized in us poses to him and to his kingdom, to his illegally obtained territory.  When we know beyond the shadow of a doubt who we are and what we possess in Christ, we are a threat.  This is why the enemy continually tries to “exalt” his “high things” (lies, deceit, fear, doubt, sickness, etc) against our knowledge not only of God, but of who we are in Him & who He created us to be.

Oh, to be out from under that shadow, brethren, oh to be fully engulfed in the loving light of Christ and His revelation to us of His truth, totally illuminated by it, by Him, His love.  Complete love casts out fear, because fear has torment and fear is never, ever of the Lord.

Remember:

2 Corinthians 10:4-6 says “(For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ; And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled.”

WE are the ones to be taking any evil things captive, not allowing them to take us any longer.  We’ve been set free.  Get into the Word, get the revelation, know the truth, seek Him so that you can be completely set free from the lies and be in bondage to them no longer.

And it starts in your mind.  Renew it.  Know who you are and what you have in Him.

God bless,

Miranda

To you….

I pass by this guy sometimes on my way to or from work, sitting and waiting for his bus to go to work.  He always looks down, miserable, unhappy.  Add to that the fact that he buys a large can of beer from the corner store across the street before he goes to his stop.  He’ll either drink it outright or pour it into his thermal coffee mug.  I hated seeing him like that.  I couldn’t help but wonder, what was it that drove him to that place?  Why did he feel so bad?  Why why why…???

One day, on my way home, I saw him there and I rolled down my window, pulled over to the side and said to him, “Hey, God loves you.   I just wanted you to know that.”  I don’t remember what he said in response, but it wasn’t very enthusiastic.

 

On another day, the Holy Spirit inspired me to write him a letter.  And this is what it said:

 

To you:

You are loved.

You are special.

You are treasured.

You are important.

You are more than your current circumstances, more than your mistakes, far more than what you think you are and way more than you could ever imagine yourself to be.  Open your eyes and mind to new possibilities, ones that only God Himself can provide for you.

Imagine this:

There you stand, tall, happy, joyful, bold, confident, liberated from any bondage’s or disillusionment that holds you down, freed from the whispered lies of hopeless defeat that plague you day after day.

Picture this:

You, there, dressed in fine linens, royalty, a chosen son adopted by God Himself into His Kingdom; a brother and co-heir with Christ Jesus….all that the Kingdom of heaven is and has becomes YOURS as a son.  No more standing outside looking in.  No more wishing or hoping or burying the disappointments under a self-induced numbness to keep the pain of failed expectation at bay.  No more, because Jesus took it all for you and from you.  Picture it:  a new life in Christ, full of joy and peace and love.

And why?

Because He loves you.  He loves you so much He laid down His life for you, took pain, sickness and punishment so that you could be free.

FREE.

This is how God sees you through the eyes of the sacrifice of His one and only begotten Son, whose shed blood covers and takes away all the things we’ve been told that we are, that we’ve been conditioned to believe are true…but they’re all lies.  He is the truth and the truth is:  HE LOVES YOU.

YOU.

I make this declaration over you: that you will receive this revelation in such a profound way that your life will forever be changed for the best; you will become His and all that He knows that you are and will be as a chosen son loved by God, the one who created you.  You will be a living testimony and you will change the lives of others with this truth once it becomes yours.

I don’t know your name, but God does and He has it written on the palm of His hand:

“Look, I have inscribed you name on my palms; your walls are constantly before Me.” (Isaiah 49:16)

 

God bless.

Sincerely,

Someone who cares

But don’t we all need to know this?  Even us, those of us who are “believers” or consider ourselves “Christians”?  Do WE even see ourselves as this?  Free.  Sons.  Saved.  Rescued.  Redeemed.  Healed.  We throw these words around but do they even have any weight?  Have we the true revelation about what these words mean and the gravity of all that Jesus did for us so that we could truly become like Him??  Do you know what your inheritance is as a son?  Most would say, “yeah, heaven, when I die.”  Oh but brethren, it is SO much more than that.  Jesus, as the Testator of the will of God, died and that inheritance is something that becomes ours NOW.   Here and now.  But we cannot act on what we do not know.

We are not to be what we once were.  We are to put on Christ.  We are to be citizens of the Kingdom, imitators of God, shedding the old man like dirty garments and stepping into the new man that He created us to be.

Who are you?

You are loved, special, treasured, His.  And in this knowledge, we are then to go and tell others that they, too, are these things as well.

God bless,

Miranda

Illusions

Illusion: something with deceptive appearance; false or incorrect idea.

The enemy operates in the realm of deception and lies.  He wants you to keep your eyes on what SEEMS to be and not what really is.   He wants you to believe that you are living a life of lack: lack of health and peace, lack of provision, lack of evidence, signs, healings, miracles; lack of the Word of God working and producing in your life, lack of change, even the lack of God’s presence.  When you’re going through a trial, which of us doesn’t at some point have the thought of “Where is God?  I don’t feel Him!”?  This leads you to begin to doubt God’s love and provision and presence just because you don’t FEEL it.

The enemy functions in the realm of the senses and when we rely on our senses as our source of truth, we are then open to his deceptions.   We are then prone to believing his lies that we are lacking when the Word of God says that we lack nothing when we are in Christ.

Adam and Eve had it all.  No lack whatsoever.   They had peace, health, food, everlasting life and more importantly, intimate fellowship with God Himself yet what did the enemy get them to focus on?  The one and only thing that God said they could not partake of ……and why?  Because He was being mean and withholding something good from them?  No, because they would DIE if they ate it.  DEATH would be their reward.  Did they not understand what that meant?

If we allow ourselves to focus on the illusion of lack, then we are partaking of and eating the lies of the enemy and this brings death to us.

It begins to kill your faith.  It’s like a small infection that, if not treated, will keep spreading and growing until it eats away at anything living and good, leaving behind rot, decay and death.   The enemy knows that it is by FAITH that we receive the promises of God; he knows that the substance of FAITH is what makes those very things manifest and thrive in your life.

It kills off your trust in God and in His Word.  Did God really say?  Why isn’t it working?  I don’t see or feel anything different or better so it must not be working which means God’s Word doesn’t work, at least not for me….if I still feel this way then why bother praying and standing on the Word….and on and on and on…..  Don’t think for one second these thoughts are all yours.  Who do you think plants those seeds and then waters them with fear and anxiety and symptoms and unbelief?    The enemy knows full well the laws of sowing and reaping.  He knows how the spiritual laws of God operate better than most Christian’s do which is why he can keep doing what he does and be so successful at putting them under repeatedly.

It kills off your identity in Christ.  Well, if I really was then this would change…..I wouldn’t feel/be/act this way….since I don’t see or feel any change then maybe I really don’t….maybe I’m really not…..

It kills off your peace.  So, if I still have these symptoms/issues, and it doesn’t work, at least not for me, and I’m not what I thought I was, and God’s Word isn’t producing in my life, then there’s no hope…I’m not healed, I’m not protected, I’m not saved…..  It fills and torments you with fear and dread.  It kills off your joy, your light, all the things that Christ is to be in you, all the things that are the fruit of the life of the Holy Spirit within you….and this brings death to your spirit as the light begins to be overshadowed by darkness, suffocating the flame inside until it’s snuffed out completely.

THIS is the enemy’s purpose.

It can and does bring death to the physical body: sickness, disease, malfunction, fatigue, weakness.  People grow weary of fighting and some even give in to death, believing that it is better for them to die than to live.  The enemy wearies them into full subjection and snuffs out the light of Christ in another, to quiet another….because he lies.

And we believe.

He is the creator of lies, the stealer of truth.  We must stop letting him take from us what is rightfully ours.  ALL (not some) of the promises of God in Him are yes and in Him amen for the glory of God by us (2 Corinthians 1:20)

Paul tells us that we must bring ALL/EVERY thought(s) captive.  They must all be tried against the Word of God and if that thought does not line up with the Word, we are to discard it forcefully!   “For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds; Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.” (2 Corinthians 10:4-5)

DO NOT COMPROMISE with the enemy of your soul.  Not once, not ever.  He will steal any morsel he can get his hands on.  Give and inch and he’ll take so much more.

Be tenacious.  Dig in.  Know that no matter how bad the “illusion of lack” can seem God’s Word IS life, it DOES prosper but we cannot let the enemy steal that seed or allow him to dig it up and out from under us or it stalls the process.

Fight the good fight of faith.  Get and keep His Word, guard it like a precious gem, bury it deep within you.  It’s your only offensive weapon against the enemy, and he’ll do anything he can to knock it out of your hand so that you are left defenseless, left to become just another statistic of the devil, who started off so strong, but man, what happened???

Did God really say?  Well, go find out for yourself….

Then hold tight and don’t give up.

God bless,

Miranda

The Good Shepherd?

I had a conversation with someone last week and something that was said completely disturbed me.

We were talking about God and suffering and I said that I absolutely do not believe for one minute that God puts suffering/sickness on us to “teach us a lesson” or to discipline us.  Aside from the fact that it is unscriptural (please do NOT mention Job’s boils or Paul’s thorn), it is out of God’s character to do such a thing.  The person I was talking to disagreed with me wholeheartedly and believed that He does do that.   After some back and forth, this person then tells me that they once heard a pastor (well-known) do a sermon on Psalm 23, the shepherd and His sheep.  I’ve personally read “A Shepherd Looks at Psalm 23” by Phillip Keller (highly recommended) and couldn’t imagine where they were going with this.

They said that this pastor said sheep are inherently stupid, that they needed to be disciplined (i.e. the rod, of which this person also mentioned the “spare the rod, spoil the child” verse, etc).  This pastor then went on to say that to keep the sheep safe that the shepherd would BREAK THE LEGS of a wayward sheep to keep it from running away from the flock and into danger then he would carry it on his shoulders until it was healed and it would be dependent on the shepherd and never stray again.

I’m sorry…..WHAT?  I was so incensed by this statement because it’s so out of God’s character but I mean… is this what His people are really saying and believing about Him?  Of course I went and researched this statement to see if any of it was true.  Nope.  Not true.  It’s an anecdote pastor’s use.  (To keep this short I’ll paste one of the article links here http://pulpitandpen.org/2014/06/27/the-shepherd-breaking-his-sheeps-legs-myths-thatll-preach/ ).

But let’s say that human shepherds actually DID do that?  What does that say about God?  Would that in any way reflect how Jesus treats us as His sheep?  We have to measure everything against His Word so what does scripture say about the sheep (us) and the shepherds (pastors or God/Jesus Himself)?

First of all, there is a scathing judgment on the “shepherds” of Israel by God Himself in Ezekiel 34.  The first four verses read:

And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, Son of man, prophesy against the shepherds of Israel, prophesy, and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD unto the shepherds; Woe be to the shepherds of Israel that do feed themselves! should not the shepherds feed the flocks? Ye eat the fat, and ye clothe you with the wool, ye kill them that are fed: but ye feed not the flock. The diseased have ye not strengthened, neither have ye healed that which was sick, neither have ye bound up that which was broken, neither have ye brought again that which was driven away, neither have ye sought that which was lost; but with force and with cruelty have ye ruled them.”  (Read all of this chapter, very telling)

Sorry, but to me, breaking someone’s bones to “keep them safe” is forceful, cruel and abusive.  Causing disease and suffering to “work something out” in people’s lives and character is forceful, cruel and abusive.  Let me ask you this:  would YOU do that to someone you love to teach them a lesson?  When children are harmed or beat in the natural, it’s considered ABUSE right?  Well, have you ever thought that maybe their parents are trying to work out some character flaw in them?  I mean, isn’t that what we’re saying about God?  Imagine this:  maybe you see your child is going astray, making poor decisions or acting in ways that are “sinful,”  ways that are going to bring more harm to them in some way….so based on this “logic”, maybe you should afflict them physically, inject them with poison or a disease so that you can “keep them safe” or strengthen their character, teach them a valuable lesson.  And not only that, but then they will come to depend on you as caretaker and parent and it will draw them closer to you.  Then, ultimately you get to decide when they are ready to be healed and restored, if at all.

Ridiculous, isn’t it?  Doesn’t that make you mad?

That would be considered a “captive audience” and God is the Liberator, not the Captor.  How many times does the Word say He came to set the captives free?  “And I will be found of you, saith the LORD: and I will turn away your captivity.”  (Jeremiah 29:14A)  And not only that, but God does not force Himself on anyone, He does not work against someone’s will.  We have free will, we make our own decisions and God cannot and will not go against anyone’s will.

Does that above scenario sound loving to you?  So how can people say that God is love and in the same breath say that God gave them cancer?  Or that He killed someone they love because “He needed them?”  They say it because that’s what they are taught.

Back to scripture.  What about Jesus?  What does HE say about sheep (us) and being the Good Shepherd?

Matthew 12:9-14 – “And when He was departed thence, He went into their synagogue: And, behold, there was a man which had his hand withered. And they asked Him, saying, Is it lawful to heal on the sabbath days? that they might accuse Him. And He said unto them, What man shall there be among you, that shall have one sheep, and if it fall into a pit on the sabbath day, will he not lay hold on it, and lift it out? How much then is a man better than a sheep? Wherefore it is lawful to do well on the sabbath days. Then saith He to the man, Stretch forth thine hand. And He stretched it forth; and it was restored whole, like as the other. Then the Pharisees went out, and held a council against Him, how they might destroy Him.”  Notice: first, the man in the parable did not break the sheep’s legs to teach it to not stray, nor did he leave it in that condition, he went and SAVED IT.  Second, Jesus was talking about HEALING, healing the man, who is better than the sheep!

Luke 15:4-6 – “What man of you, having an hundred sheep, if he lose one of them, doth not leave the ninety and nine in the wilderness, and go after that which is lost, until he find it? And when he hath found it, he layeth it on his shoulders, rejoicing. And when he cometh home, he calleth together his friends and neighbours, saying unto them, Rejoice with me; for I have found my sheep which was lost.” There is rejoicing over the one found.  Not anger or punishment. He left all the rest of his flock to go and rescue the one who was lost.  Do we not all get lost at times?  Do we not all go astray?  Are we always perfect and obedient?  No.  But God comes through LOVE, His Word, and His Spirit to bring us back to Him.  It’s the LOVE of God that brings people to repentance.

In John 10, Jesus talks extensively about the Shepherd and the sheep.  He says that He goes before the sheep and the sheep follow because they KNOW HIS VOICE.  When He speaks, they hear, they listen.  How does He speak to us today?  Through His Word and His Spirit.  He teaches us to heed His voice only, so that all He has to do is speak and we will listen.  He draws us in through love and trust.  And if the sheep (us) do not listen, if we do stray, we suffer the consequences of our poor decision to leave the safety of our Shepherd’s watch and care.  He doesn’t need to inflict harm on us, we do it to ourselves. And we have an enemy who will take full advantage of our disobedience.

V:10-11 – “The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.”

He came to GIVE us life, not take it from us.  That’s Satan’s job and for people to lay blame on God for OUR sickness and suffering is blasphemy.  And if God “uses Satan” to teach us lessons (as some teach), then Satan is not a thief because he’s only doing what he is told and given permission to do.  If he has permission, it’s not robbery.

Jesus gave His life.  He took our punishment; the price was already paid for our sins!  If we need to be continually made to suffer punishment for our wrong doings, then there was no reason at all for what Jesus did.  All the scourging and suffering He endured was all for nothing.

God is love.  Love does no harm.

He mends, He does not break.

God bless,

Miranda

Stage fright

Well, it’s been made official. My book is finally published. It’s taken four years; a lot of time, a lot of laboring and waiting and patience and tears and excitement and panic. It’s been a roller coaster of emotions and thoughts. I certainly could not have done it without my husband. He put as much time into the technical as I did on the creative. Self-publishing has its benefits but be ready to put in a good amount of time and effort, do your research, look at others who’ve done it and learn from their mistakes.

Being self-published it’s not a perfect work. As a matter of fact I found a misprint in the published copy after I ordered 50 books but, hey, I’ve found typos and mistakes in professionally published books so it is bound to happen. This is where I have to bind and gag that task-mastering perfectionist and not allow her to freak out about it.

It’s a little unnerving to put yourself out there creatively, open to the criticisms of the public, even with a fiction novel. When I was younger, poetry was my creative outlet. Poetry to me was intensely personal; it was my inner self poured out into words on paper, my deepest thoughts and fears and emotions manifested into logos. And I was extremely cautious as to whom I let into those places. Not just ANYONE could read those poems. Not just ANYONE would understand. Not just ANYONE was allowed to look past the curtain and into the great beyond. I was always very discerning as to who was allowed to have access to those truths.

And here it is, a book that I’ve written now published, available to anyone who so chooses to pick it up and read it. Yes, it may be fictional, but it is still hugely personal for me on many levels. I wrote it. I spent 4 years of my life pouring myself into this story and these characters, and yes, as a fiction writer you DO put pieces of yourself into it somehow, someway. Maybe some piece of your personality becomes part of a character, you make your own personal experiences one of theirs, some part of your heart and mind and life does wind up in there, so in a sense it is still poetic, it is still you in there somewhere.

There’s also the story itself. It’s not a typical story. My husband asked me when I first started writing this book, “So, how would you categorize it?” I said, “Babe, I don’t think a book like this has been written.” (No, I haven’t read every book in existence, but this was how I felt about the story.) After he read it, he agreed with me. The entire time I wrote that book, I was thrilled about the story and couldn’t wait for it to be published. That being said, when it came time to put it out there, I would wake up in the middle of the night in panic about the story and the plot to the point where the thoughts came to just cancel the whole thing and not publish it (the enemy loves to come in like a thief in the night to steal your sleep and peace).

I got worked up into an anxious lather about all the ways people would pick it apart and hate it, that people who supported me would be disappointed once they read it. I started to believe that I was going to let people down. Thank You Jesus for the people in my life who reminded me that this was all inspired by God and it has a purpose and that these were just lies of the enemy because he knows that this story is going to touch SOMEONE, somewhere, sometime.

Is it a perfect work? Nope. Is it purposeful? Yes. And the only person that I have to be accountable to is God. I know that not everyone will love it, some may even hate it, and that’s okay. God will take it where it needs to go and His purpose will play out for a greater good. It’s not about me. Yes, I am ecstatic and grateful that He made my lifelong dream of being a published author come true and I will enjoy all that goes with that. I have my first book signing this Saturday and while I am a little nervous, I am excited and I have so many people around me who are excited for me. But it’s more than that. It’s an opportunity to share the love and truths of God in another way. And THAT’S what matters.
All for His glory, not mine.

God bless,
Miranda
http://www.hiselectnovel.com

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