Rest – Living from a Place of Victory (part 9)

I personally believe that one of the greatest tools we have to live a life of victory is to live from a place of rest.

But what does it mean to live from a place of rest?

I used to think that it meant setting aside a day per week to ‘rest’. Not work. Like a Sabbath. God modelled this when He created the world. He ‘worked’ on six days and on the seventh day, He rested. This is a brilliant idea and one that God modelled for us. Our family has personally found it hard to carve out that day of solitude in amidst a busy lifestyle.

God didn’t work flat out and then stop to rest. He paced Himself. Yes. He still stopped and rested but He didn’t become frantic and frazzled.

When the kids were small and I was busy all week with them, hubby would look after them of a Thursday evening and that was my time ‘off’. I would set it aside and go out shopping. I loved having something to look forward to but I gradually came to realise that it didn’t ‘fill’ me up. In fact, it seemed to drain me more – the loud music, the bright lights, surrounded by heaps of people, busy shops, racing around trying to get a lot of things done. I needed to use that time instead to ‘chill’, to be at peace with myself and my surroundings, to be filled up by spending time with God and nature.

Living from a place of rest is completely different to setting aside a certain period of ‘time’. When you realise that the opposite of ‘rest’ can also be ‘striving’ then it changes the equation.

Being at ‘peace’ with God and inviting Him into every aspect of our life by turning our hearts frequently to Him through the day to listen and converse together seems a lot more effective. Our internal rest/peace grows and we live out of that. Thus, when we encounter external ‘noise’, disagreements, frustrations, we are quick to retreat to that place of peace and rest and operate out of that area. I find that I tend to let more things go. Those ‘things’ that used to annoy me no longer have the same grip over me.

Does it really matter?

I find that I often ask myself that question as I live from that place of rest. This allows me to then brush stuff off and not let it become a ‘big’ deal in my life or to not spend time and emotional energy on something that isn’t really worth it.

Perhaps the most well know person who managed to operate out of a lifestyle of rest is Brother Lawrence. He writes in “The Practice of the Presence of God” – “by dwelling in the presence of God, he has established such a sweet communion with the Lord that his spirit abides, without much effort, in the restful peace of God. In this centre of rest, he is filled with a faith that equips him to handle anything that comes into his life.”

To cultivate a lifestyle of rest, here are some pointers.

  1. Be still. Psalm 46:10 talks about being still and internally at rest as that is when we truly know God. It is not reliant on our external world being quiet. Delight in a period of solitude and quietness with God on a daily basis.
  2. Live a lifestyle with margin. Allow extra time, energy, thought space, finances, & room in our life for friendships etc so that nothing creates alarm or tension. People often ask me complex questions especially about God or healing and my reply is that I just accept what God does and says as I don’t have the emotional energy to ‘waste’ time exploring that issue in a complex way or to give it a space in my life. If we are driving somewhere, we allow ourselves a few minutes extra for any interruptions. In preparing for times of ministry eg Healing Rooms, we arise earlier and give ourselves some extra time and space for preparation.
  3. Guard your peace. Fiercely guard your peace. This is my personal thermostat for when I realise that I have not been living from a place of rest. When I find anger arising within me, I realise that I have not been ‘resting’ with God as much. If a car driver cuts you off, do you get angry? What comes out of your mouth – blessing or cursing? When we need to leave at a certain time, giving the kids & hubby a 5 minute warning helps in our household. The same with talking about expectations. We find that this helps the family know what is expected and therefore we are able to operate out of peace more often.
  4. Spending time meditating on God – His goodness, His character, His attributes.
  5. Constant interaction with God about the small things in life, the daily grind, the emotions and feelings. Abide with God. Enjoy delighting and wondering with God in the small things.
  6. Increasing your sensitivity to the Holy Spirit. Exploring new ways of communicating with Him and being open to Him.
  7. Find your ‘markers’ that let you know when you are not living out of a place of rest. When do you notice that you are striving? Are wanting to be heard or noticed or recognised?

We can really only truly release rest externally when we have cultivated rest internally. Jesus calmed the storm (Mark 4:39) with His internal world changing the external world. King Jehoshaphat discovered that as Israel rested, God fought and won for them (2 Chronicles 20). Verse 15 says “For the battle is not yours but God’s”. Wow – Imagine if we lived every day out of that premise.

Do you continually release rest and peace into your world?

What would others say about you?

Do you bring chaos with you?

How often are you contacting your prayer warriors to pray for ‘emergencies’?

What is one thing you can implement this week to begin to live a lifestyle of abiding with God and resting in His presence?

Prophetic Activations / Exercises to incorporate into your week:

The purpose of these exercises is to help us hear God’s voice in a clearer manner. They sharpen our senses to hear and recognise God’s voice and His way of communicating with us. This enables us to grow in our relationship with God and also to impart to others what God tells us for them. Feel free to use as many of these activations each week as you can. The more you practice, the sharper you become at hearing God’s voice. Enjoy! Remember that whenever you give another person a prophetic word or picture etc, please make sure that it is encouraging, edifying (strengthening) and comforting (1 Corinthians 14:3) and that it comes from a place of love.

1. Children / Families Activation: Intentionally create some down time this week to go for a walk as a family. As you walk, ask everyone to find where they see God on the walk and to bring back something that reminds them of that. Also ask everyone to find something on the walk that reflects what God is showing them about another family member. Stop and share it with that family member.

2. Group Activation: Have an extended soaking time (time of meditation) where everyone meditates on the goodness of God. Allow time at the end of that for people to share their experience and what they discovered about God and themselves.

3. Beginner Activation: Spend time this week intentionally creating space for resting and abiding with God. Ask Him to show you areas of your life that He would like you to change.

4. Intermediate Activation: Ask God to highlight an area of unrest or chaos in your world (personal or area of living). Ask God to show you what He wants to release and do there. Prophesy over that area and release peace.

5. Advanced Activation: Ask God to bring to your mind a current television news reader. Spend time with God crafting a prophetic word for that person. Make sure that it is encouraging and be aware of your language and make sure it is not full of christian words. Send it to the person care of the television station.

Spiritual Hygiene – Living from a Place of Victory (part 8)

Just like having a physical shower washes off any dirt and germs and cleanses you on the outside, there is a spiritual ‘shower’ or spiritual ‘hygiene’ activities that you can do that can enable you to blossom and to not be pulled down into mediocre by ‘critters’ that attach to you.

When our daughter was 9 years old, she was involved in giving some words of knowledge for physical healing during the church’s morning service along with 2 other girls and 3 other boys similar ages. The kids then formed 2 groups (one the boys and the other the girls) up the front of the church and preceded to pray for over 150 people each group.

Since this took a long period of time, we left for home almost immediately after they had finished praying.  We live a 45 minute drive away and by the time we arrived home, our daughter was complaining of feeling ill. She complained of feeling nauseous, and a sore stomach. No matter what I did or what medicine I gave her or the endless praying for her appeared to change anything. 24 hours later I sat on the side of her bed totally frustrated. Nothing we had done had helped at all. She was still feeling totally nauseous and had a very sore stomach. In frustration I said, “when did this start?” My daughter replied, “Straight after I was praying for people yesterday”.

 

                   BINGO!!

 

I suddenly realised what had occurred. I did one action that changed everything.

As I said, “I brush off everything that attached itself to you during the time of ministry that wasn’t of God” and physically just used a brushing action to brush off over the top of her, she immediately sat up and said, “Oh I feel totally fine now!!”

I was gobsmacked. Was that even possible?

My daughter preceded to get out of bed and ate lunch with no more complaints of a sore stomach and nausea.

I then emailed our Church’s Children’s Worker and explained this as well as notifying the Healing Rooms Director of which we were part of the Healing Rooms team. Since that day, we have implemented a quick action at the end of every Healing Rooms time of just ‘brushing off’ everything that has attached to us during the ministry time that is not of God. I believe that has circumvented a lot of potential sickness of healing rooms team’s members.

Our family also do this after every time of ministry, whether prophetic, evangelism, healing, serving, prayer etc. We are proactive and don’t wait until we feel unwell to do it. Even if we had the best time serving and ministering, we still do it to get rid of anything lurking. We have made it a fun thing that we automatically do when we get in the car on the way home from any ministry time.

I find that children tend to exhibit spiritual things quickly in the physical. I watch my kids and learn from them. No doubt what happens to them also occurs with me but it doesn’t seem to be as physically apparent.

The other side to this is making sure that we are properly prepared for times of ministering. For our family, this includes:

  1. Dealing with sin immediately
  2. Forgiving quickly
  3. Keeping short accounts with people. Not letting anything negative build up between us and anyone else.
  4. Not sweating the small stuff ie don’t get distracted by the small niggly issues. Get over it. Focus on God instead.
  5. Praying a hedge of protection around, under and over our family, house etc.
  6. Spending time worshipping God and listening to Him.

What about you? What are your ‘spiritual’ shower things you do to cleanse yourself?

Prophetic Activations / Exercises to incorporate into your week:

The purpose of these exercises is to help us hear God’s voice in a clearer manner. They sharpen our senses to hear and recognise God’s voice and His way of communicating with us. This enables us to grow in our relationship with God and also to impart to others what God tells us for them. Feel free to use as many of these activations each week as you can. The more you practice, the sharper you become at hearing God’s voice. Enjoy! Remember that whenever you give another person a prophetic word or picture etc, please make sure that it is encouraging, edifying (strengthening) and comforting (1 Corinthians 14:3) and that it comes from a place of love.

1. Children / Families Activation: Get some bubble blowing equipment (bubble mixture and bubble wand etc) and blow bubbles. Ask each person to spend a minute with God asking Him to reveal to them something exciting for them that God wants them to begin to do or something that they would love to be able to do. Then blow the bubbles and ask each person to walk through the bubbles declaring out aloud what they are wanting to walk into.

2. Group Activation: Get a whole lot of Lego blocks. Set up several stations of Lego around the room and ask people to spread out around the Lego in groups. Ask people to start building with Lego and to get them to ask God to show them what to build, colours to use etc. Give them a time limit of ten to fifteen minutes to build and have fun building with God directing them. The end result of the built Lego is something personally for them from God. Ask people to ask God what it means for them personally, either the finished product or the process.

3. Beginner Activation: Ask God to show you an electrical item that you remind Him of. Ask God to show you why and how.

4. Intermediate Activation: Spend time with God crafting a blessing to either write or declare over your parent. If your parents are both dead, then ask God to show you a significant older person in your life to be able to bless.

5. Advanced Activation: Spend time with God interceding and asking God what to pray and decree and declare over your state / country’s Education Minister & his/her future decisions. Then decree that into the atmosphere.

Joy – Living from a Place of Victory (part 7)

Nehemiah 8:10 says that the joy of the Lord is my strength. How can it be my strength?

When we live life from a joy filled place, it is amazing what grabs our attention and what is no longer significant. What ‘burdens’ we can hold and what we can let go and not focus on.

When circumstances threaten to overwhelm us or take a turn for the worse, the joy of the Lord gives us the ability to stand firm and not be swayed emotionally or spiritually.

When the Joy of the Lord overwhelms you and becomes your new ‘go to’ or ‘live from’ place, then you find an incredible inner strength that changes your perspective.

Our burdens and grumbles turn into gratitude and blessings. Our outlook changes to focus on the good, not the bad. We focus on what Jesus is doing, not on what Satan is trying so hard to do to capture our attention and bring us down.

You may well say, “Jane, you don’t know my circumstances.”

You are darn right. I don’t know your circumstances but you also don’t know mine and how hard life has and can be for me. One of the biggest steps forward I have had in my life with God and my own personal growth was when I stopped focussing on my problems and started focusing on God’s goodness and giving thanks.

We begin to find things to be grateful for.

We change our perspective to how God sees the situation.

In 1 Thessalonians 5:16, Paul said, “Always be joyful.”

Why?

Paul knew joyfulness is imperative in order to love the life God has given us.

But how do we do that when life stinks? When people hurt us? When circumstances seem hopeless? When our hearts are broken?

Paul then answers this question in the following 2 verses.

1 Thessalonians 5:17 says, “Never stop praying”. To be joyful, we need to stay connected to God in prayer, asking Him daily to fill us with joy based on our walk with Him — not our satisfaction with everything in life.

1 Thessalonians 5:18 says, “Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus”.

This can be hard to start to do and to develop it until it becomes a lifestyle. It can feel phoney. It can feel like I am not being honest with myself or with others. Am I trying to hide stuff instead of facing up to the reality of my situation?

Being joyful always doesn’t mean walking around with a fake smile on my face. It doesn’t mean ignoring reality. It doesn’t mean ignoring negative emotions.

It means getting a grip on our life and realising that we will never have the perfect life this side of eternity but Christ is in us and He is perfect. His will is for us to live with joy. To contend for joy. Not because we are perfect or false but because Christ is perfect and He is in us.

We are commanded to intentionally focus on the good, instead of the bad.

To count our blessings rather than our burdens.

To let our faith, not our feelings, dictate our joy.

To focus on Christ not on circumstances.

Lift your heads, my friends and keep your focus on God. Be grateful and watch the joy of the Lord fill you to overflowing.

Prophetic Activations / Exercises to incorporate into your week:

The purpose of these exercises is to help us hear God’s voice in a clearer manner. They sharpen our senses to hear and recognise God’s voice and His way of communicating with us. This enables us to grow in our relationship with God and also to impart to others what God tells us for them. Feel free to use as many of these activations each week as you can. The more you practice, the sharper you become at hearing God’s voice. Enjoy! Remember that whenever you give another person a prophetic word or picture etc, please make sure that it is encouraging, edifying (strengthening) and comforting (1 Corinthians 14:3) and that it comes from a place of love.

1. Children / Families Activation: Make cupcakes and decorate them by writing on them a word to encourage someone. Give them away to the appropriate people.

2. Group Activation: Ask people present to put their phones in a box in the middle of the room. Ask 5 people to come forward and each pick out a phone but not turn it on. Get those 5 people to prophesy over the owner of the phone they have in their hand. After they have prophesied, ask the owners to step forward to collect their phone.

3. Beginner Activation: Ask God to highlight a person to you whom needs joy. Ask God to give you an encouraging prophetic word for that person.

4. Intermediate Activation: Ask God to highlight a local business to you that is not prospering. Ask God what He would have you pray, prophesy and declare over the business and its future customers.

5. Advanced Activation: Ask God to show you where you can find a homeless person and what God would have you say and do and give to this person. Get prepared and then go and find this person.

Renewing your Mind – Living from a Place of Victory (part 6)

When I first had my children, I really felt God impress on me to live my life with Romans 12:1-2 being paramount.

In the Message version it says in Romans 12:1-2 “Place Your Life Before God – So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you.”

These verses and meditating on them, have helped bring a peace and joy to my life and that of my family. We have tried to base our whole thinking around what is of God versus what is of our culture. The NIV writes Romans 12:2 like this: “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” This led us to home school our children, an uncommon thing in Australia. I realise that home schooling is not for every family, but all too often people do not even ask God what form of schooling their children should have or who should have the major role in educating and indoctrinating their children.

Several principles I have found that have helped me tremendously in renewing my mind are:

  1. Whatever we focus on, grows.

Thus, if we focus on negative things, they will grow. Thus, be careful what you think about. Also, be aware that what you put into your mind, or feed your mind, will also reap fruit. Deliberately focus on the good. I am constantly amazed by people who continually say negative or depressing things. There is so much good in this world to focus on instead. Thus, be intentional what you look at, read, listen to.

 

                              I challenge you to go on a media fast for a week to a fortnight. Soak instead in God’s Word and see if there is any change in your circumstances and your thought life after the media fast.

 

  1. Change your thoughts

What we believe in our hearts not only determines our behaviour but it directs our lives. Check out Proverbs 23:7 “For as he thinks in his heart, so is he”. Deliberately change your thoughts to positive thoughts.

The key to personal transformation is to change the way you think; to renew your mind (Romans 12:2, 2 Corinthians 10:5, 1 John 5:4).

2 Corinthians 10:5 talks about “take captive every thought”. Stop and capture every thought that flitters through your mind that is not of God. Immediately take it captive and get rid of it.

I like to think of a 3 colour traffic light system with my thought life. Very rarely now will I be anxious, worried, sad or depressed. I classify those emotions as the colour red in the traffic light system. I am generally very positive and upbeat – thus green traffic light. I identify, for me, some things that raise an amber warning light in the traffic light system and that prompts me to immediately go back to God to keep in the green. I immediately take them captive and get rid of them. What are your ‘amber’ warning lights?

  1. Meditate on Scripture. Play Christian songs with lyrics that speak life.

Speak life over yourself. Write out a declaration and speak it out over yourself on a regular basis. Speak the Bible over yourself. Pray it over your life. Bless your spirit with words from the Bible.

  1. Don’t second guess or keep asking.

So many times, I know people have heard from God but they don’t like the answer so they waste precious time by continually asking God for (hopefully) a different answer. This does not lead to a peaceful mind.

  1. Watch your words – speak life. Be careful of what you say. Are you speaking words that bring life or words that bring death? Our words have the power to create the outcome. (see blog post from June 2nd, 2018 – http://www.unlockingthegold.com/what-we-say-living-from-a-place-of-victory-part-4/)
  1. Memorial stones

I find that it helps me to stay focused if I am beginning something new to have reminders around the place. Just like the Israelites had the memorial stones (Joshua 4 – stones from the Jordan River that reminded them of what God had done for them), I keep reminders at home for me. Little momentoes that remind me constantly of God’s goodness, kindness and love. These momentoes encourage me to turn my thoughts to Christ, to stay positive.

7. Guard your Peace

Be aware of living in a state of total peace so that when you come against any feeling that is not from this ‘peaceful’ state, you are immediately alerted in your spirit. Guard your peace. Do whatever you have under your control to keep your spirit at peace.

Prophetic Activations / Exercises to incorporate into your week:

The purpose of these exercises is to help us hear God’s voice in a clearer manner. They sharpen our senses to hear and recognise God’s voice and His way of communicating with us. This enables us to grow in our relationship with God and also to impart to others what God tells us for them. Feel free to use as many of these activations each week as you can. The more you practice, the sharper you become at hearing God’s voice. Enjoy! Remember that whenever you give another person a prophetic word or picture etc, please make sure that it is encouraging, edifying (strengthening) and comforting (1 Corinthians 14:3) and that it comes from a place of love.

1. Children / Families Activation: Go around your family/table and ask God to show you a supernatural superhero power that God has given to each family member. Encourage each person in their own superhero supernatural power.

2. Group Activation: In preparation, write an encouraging single word on a piece of paper eg fun, June, special, warm, gold, Holy, grace, laughter, September etc. Write enough different single words so that there is at least one piece of paper for each person expected to be present. During the group time, spread out the pieces of paper and ask people to choose one piece of paper each. Then ask them to find someone the word applies to prophetically and speak a prophetic word over them about that characteristic.

3. Beginner Activation: Keep track of every thought and feeling today, pulling yourself up when you start to feel, say or think anything negative. Capture those thoughts and change them to the opposite. Deliberately try to choose positive and thankfulness instead. Find someone who appears down and not cheerful and give them a sincere prophetic word.

4. Intermediate Activation: Find a house in your neighbourhood with an unkempt front yard. Walk past and spend time blessing the house, the occupants and the owners. Try and do this on a regular basis and take note of any changes.

5. Advanced Activation: Ask God how you can be part of the response to your country’s refugee situation. Prophesy over the situation, whether your country or the wider world situation for refugees.

Changing Atmospheres – Living from a Place of Victory (part 5)

Several years ago, my daughter and I were having a drink with a lady whilst waiting for my husband and son to join us. After a good twenty minutes, we both were looking at one another in amazement. The woman was so negative. We were both feeling very uncomfortable because everything we said was turned into a negative complaint. The woman stated that it was such a cold, dreary day. She then went on to say that the café would probably forget her drink (which they did). She then said that the coffee would probably be cold, which it was. Everything she said was so negative.

Suddenly I remembered that we can change or ‘shift’ the atmosphere. As a family we had recently listened to a CD by Dawna DeSilva from Bethel on this topic but we hadn’t yet ‘tried’ it out. Very quietly so that only my daughter and I heard, I said, “Spirit of negativity I see you and I choose not to partner with you. Instead, I release a spirit of joy.”

Instantly this woman stopped complaining and being negative. The atmosphere changed significantly and instantaneously. My daughter and I were gobsmacked. We both realised the results were amazing.

I believe it is important to teach our children that they are responsible for their attitude and the atmosphere they carry and also how they can simply change the atmosphere around them by speaking a few simple words.

We are spiritual beings and the spirit within us has power to change the atmosphere where we are. I have personally used this a number of times in my work situation where I have been nursing a patient who is really upset and the atmosphere will completely change. It is usually so powerful that all my colleagues will notice it and comment on the change with amazement.

Friends, this is a powerful weapon. Whenever you notice an atmosphere that isn’t of God, use this method to change it. Whenever you walk into a room and feel an extremely strong emotion that isn’t you or you didn’t have a few minutes ago and there seems to be no apparent reason, try this method. It works.

An example is friends were walking through the casino from the carpark to the restaurant and the woman suddenly felt a strong sexual urge overwhelm her. She was completely baffled but tried this strategy and the strong sexual urge immediately left her. She had encountered a spirit in the atmosphere that was not of her but had impacted her as she walked through that area.

I encourage you to try it this week and then teach your children how they can also do it. When I teach kids how to do this, I usually frame it as saying, “fear go, peace come”.

I taught it to a Sunday School class last year and that very afternoon at lunchtime, one of the kids was in his kitchen helping his mum who was stressed and the atmosphere became quite tense. The mum later shared how her son said, “I learnt something today. I can’t remember what to say. Oh yes. Stress go, peace come.” The mum shared how they both noticed an immediate change.

Try it when you next encounter something negative “in the air”. It may even be your own children being grumpy, dishonest, defiant etc. You have spiritual authority over the situation, so just quietly say, “I see you spirit of…. and I choose not to partner with you and instead I release the spirit of…..(the opposite)”. See what happens.

If you would like to hear a full teaching on this, Dawna DeSilva from Bethel Church has a  fantastic teaching audio on ‘shifting atmospheres’. (http://store.ibethel.org/p4003/shifting-atmospheres)

Let me know how you go.

Prophetic Activations / Exercises to incorporate into your week:

The purpose of these exercises is to help us hear God’s voice in a clearer manner. They sharpen our senses to hear and recognise God’s voice and His way of communicating with us. This enables us to grow in our relationship with God and also to impart to others what God tells us for them. Feel free to use as many of these activations each week as you can. The more you practice, the sharper you become at hearing God’s voice. Enjoy! Remember that whenever you give another person a prophetic word or picture etc, please make sure that it is encouraging, edifying (strengthening) and comforting (1 Corinthians 14:3) and that it comes from a place of love.

1. Children / Families Activation: Cut shapes of fruit out of paper. Write negative emotions & characteristics eg fear, anger, bullying, lying, on those pieces of ‘fruit’. Stick to a wall. Get a nerf gun and take it in turns to ‘shoot’ the fruit. When you ‘shoot’ the fruit, you then can turn the fruit over and write on the other side the opposite emotion. Practice saying eg “Fear go, peace come”.

2. Group Activation: Play “Prophetic UNO”. It works best in groups of 6-8 people. Get a pack of UNO cards. One at a time, turn over the top card. Follow the instructions eg if a red card, then you give a prophetic word to the person on your left. This is most effective when you play it quickly ie people need to start giving a prophetic word within 20-30 seconds of turning over the card.

UNO Prophecy Instructions

                     RED            – you give a prophetic word to the person on your left

                     GREEN       – you give a prophetic word to the person on your right

                     BLUE          – you give a prophetic word to the person opposite

                     YELLOW    – you choose who to give a prophetic word to in the group

                     DRAW 2    – choose 2 people to give you a prophetic word

                     DRAW 4    – choose 4 people to give you a prophetic word

                     WILD CARD – Choose whether you give a prophetic word to someone or choose someone to give you one.

3. Beginner Activation: Take notice of the everyone whom you meet who is negative today. Practice changing the atmosphere by saying quietly into the atmosphere “Negativity go, peace and positivity come”. Watch and see the change.

4. Intermediate Activation: Ask God to highlight 3 articles of clothing to you – the colour, type etc. Watch for a person wearing those 3 articles. Be ready to give them a prophetic word to encourage, strengthen or comfort them. Remember, you can give a prophetic word that doesn’t have “christian” language in it.

5. Advanced Activation: Go to an area of your town which is often in the news for negative reasons. Ask God to show you His heart for this area and the people within it. Prophecy over this area for a change towards Kingdom values.

What we say – Living from a Place of Victory (part 4)

       “My feet are killing me!”

       “You’re a pain in the neck”.

       “I’m sick and tired of this.”

How often have you heard those words?

Maybe, you’ve even said them.

Fast forward a few years, you have feet that are in so much pain they are literally ‘killing’ you, and a pain in the neck area that you can’t get rid of. You constantly feel sick and tired.

The words we say are powerful. Whenever we speak, we are releasing the potential for positive or negative effect into the atmosphere. Our words have the power to create, to form and fashion something out of nothing and to change outcomes. In Genesis 1, God spoke and the world was created. He has given us the same creative power that by the words we speak, we create outcomes, good or bad. Do you speak life or death?

 

         God’s Word does not return empty and our words don’t either.

 

The Bible says a lot about our use of words:

  • Isaiah 55:11 “so is my word that goes out from my mouth:It will not return to me empty,but will accomplish what I desireand achieve the purpose for which I sent it.”
  • Proverbs 18:21 “The tongue has the power of life and death,and those who love it will eat its fruit.”
  • Proverbs 12:18 “The words of the reckless pierce like swords,but the tongue of the wise brings healing.”
  • Romans 4:17 “the God who gives life to the dead and calls into being things that were not.”

This is a subject I often chat with my kids about and my children can sometimes be heard reminding me “Mum, be careful what you say as it will come true”.

Our family is so used to hearing about the power of our words that even last week we had a great example of this. Josh (12) was one of the top 3 semi finalists in the Victorian Young Achiever Awards for the Creating Change Category for his work with collecting over 18,000 pairs of brand new socks for the homeless. Dan (the eventual winner) had done amazing things and I commented how Dan would probably win it but that Josh and I needed to write a speech just in case Josh won. Josh interrupted me and said, “Mum, you are not creating a good atmosphere. You should be supporting me and saying instead, ‘When you win…’.” Josh was realistic but also fully aware of what we say into the atmosphere can change the future.

Self talk

Self talk also comes under this category. When we say negative things about ourselves eg “I’m an idiot, I shouldn’t have done that” it releases the potential for me to think like an idiot, to see myself like an idiot and to become an idiot.

Words spoken harshly or hastily can still affect us years after the incident. Did a parent or teacher ever make a negative remark to you that you can still remember?

  • “You are stupid”
  • “You’re ugly”
  • “You’ll never amount to anything”

How has self talk impacted your life? Your beliefs about yourself?

Impact of a Parent’s words

In a rash moment of anger or frustration we, as parents, can say something that will impact and change our child’s self-esteem and life forever.

I’ll never forget a number of years ago when Josh and I were going over his spelling words for his visual and auditory processing exercises. My frustration level was rising and Josh suddenly stopped and said, “Please don’t get angry and say something horrible to me.” This made me stop and have a serious think about what I was communicating to him. I was reacting out of shame. At the previous appointment, Josh had completely forgotten all the work we had done and the behavioural optometrist asked us not to come back if he couldn’t do it the next appointment as it was a waste of time. I had felt ashamed and that emotion was then impacting my behaviour when we next were practicing my son’s spelling words.

There is so much power in your words. We can take precautions when we are frustrated and angry to not speak, to take a few minutes time out, but there may be a time when we say something hurtful or life impacting in a negative way.

What can we do when we have hurt our children with our words:

  1. Apologise. Not just say sorry but accept full responsibility.
  2. Realise that it takes a lot more times of saying the positive for them to then believe it.
  3. Lead our kids through a prayer to break all agreement with the lies. You may also need to do this for yourself. An example is “I break all agreements with lies and negative thoughts, both known and unknown. I also break all agreements with assumptions & perceptions that have come about through believing the lies. Please forgive me God for partnering with the lie. God, what would you like to give me, show me or tell me in exchange for the lie?”

I encourage you to have a new normal in your life and at home. No negative words. Only kind and positive words allowed.

Power of words when praying:
Can I also encourage you to use the power of your words for good when praying? This is an amazing weapon that we have been given for living a victorious Christian life. I find that a massively effective way of praying is to decree & declare that what is in heaven is done. Eg “I decree and declare that your back will be completely healed”. I find that this carries a lot more authority than praying, “God, can you please heal this person?”.

There is slight difference between a decree and declaration.

  • A decree is an order, a command or a prescription.
  • A declaration is to announce officially, to proclaim, to make public.

That is why I usually listen to God for what He wants me to pray and then boldly proclaim, “I decree and declare…”

I encourage you to try it and see if there is any difference in the authority that you operate in as you pray.

Prophetic Activations / Exercises to incorporate into your week:

The purpose of these exercises is to help us hear God’s voice in a clearer manner. They sharpen our senses to hear and recognise God’s voice and His way of communicating with us. This enables us to grow in our relationship with God and also to impart to others what God tells us for them. Feel free to use as many of these activations each week as you can. The more you practice, the sharper you become at hearing God’s voice. Enjoy! Remember that whenever you give another person a prophetic word or picture etc, please make sure that it is encouraging, edifying (strengthening) and comforting (1 Corinthians 14:3) and that it comes from a place of love.

1. Children / Families Activation: Grab a tube of toothpaste and illustrate with your children how when you squeeze the toothpaste out of tube, it is then really hard to put it back in. Liken it to when we say words, it is then hard to take back those words. Go around the table and all share positive and encouraging words about each person. Spend a few moments asking God to highlight special encouraging words to say.

2. Group Activation: Break into pairs. Ask people to ask God to show or tell them an area of their partner’s identity or character that they are to speak into. Spend a few minutes going deeper with God to obtain more clarity about the issue. Speak this out over your partner and bless them in this area.

3. Beginner Activation: Ask God to reveal to you any lies you have believed about yourself from self talk or from what other people have said over you. Spend time with God receiving healing for this, repent of believing the lies and assumptions. Ask God to show you His truth about yourself and how He sees you.

4. Intermediate Activation: Ask God to highlight a community group who cares for women deciding whether or not to abort their babies. Prophesy life over that group and pray and bless their effectiveness.

5. Advanced Activation: Spend some time with God asking Him about an identity area for your country or state that has been robbed eg same sex marriage, safe schools with gender ideology, legalisation of homosexuality, abortion, children growing up without both parents present etc. Ask God to show you how to intercede and what to prophecy about this issue and your country.

Authority – Living from a Place of Victory (part 3)

Imagine your dad owned a huge company that employed many people. Over many years, your dad has been trying to implement a new method of operating. He has completed just about all the background work and it is nearly ready for the big day when it is going to be officially implemented. You have spent a lot of your time just hanging around your dad whilst he had been working on it. You weren’t an employee, you were the boss’s kid and so you had free reign where you went and what you did. You loved the smell of your dad’s office and being with Him whilst He worked. He often talked aloud of what He was doing and you were passionate about what He was doing since you just loved being with Him. Your dad included you in the brainstorming of the solutions to problems. Your dad often allowed you to implement the changes.

The big day arrives and unexpectedly your dad can’t make the official opening. He asks you instead, as His representative, to be there as His delegated authority. You know the workings of it nearly as much as He does because of all the time you have spent with Him and the intimacy of the working conditions. Your dad has complete faith and trust in you. He knows that you understand what is required to be done and how to solve many of the issues. Thus, he delegates his authority to you.

Imagine this is God and He is asking you to heal the sick, cast out demons, raise the dead, change nature. What is your response?

Knowing our authority and the manner in which we walk in it can change our life. It impacts the way we pray, how we pray, what we say, our actions, our lifestyle. In fact, it can completely change how we live our life.

 

                         Authority is delegated power.

 

Jesus has complete authority and He gave us authority to do whatever He did plus more. (John 14:12)

Last week I posted about identity and living from a place of how God sees us as that will always be more accurate and far better than how we see ourself. Out of our identity and our intimacy with Father God comes our authority.

When we have a faulty belief system, it definitely shows up here. How we view and believe what God can and will do, certainly impacts the authority we operate in. When we believe that God is always good and wants to heal and can heal anything, it changes the way we pray for people and what we pray.

I can remember being in a Board meeting of our Healing Rooms and the Director was sharing about a team member needing heart surgery and she went on to explain the condition. I was a Coronary Care specialist nurse for over 25 years so I knew what she was talking about. I just automatically went to the position of the operation would be the best outcome for that type of condition. As we prayed, I said, “Father God, if it is your will to heal this person without surgery…”. The Director stopped me right there and said, “Jane, we don’t pray that way.”. I was rightly reprimanded as that is not exercising my faith and authority as a daughter of the Healing God that we love and serve. God wants to heal everyone. Fair enough, some people’s healing does come through having surgery but we do not pray, “if it is your will to heal”.

I have had to intentionally grow my faith so that it is bold and so that I operate from a belief system that God can do anything, that the impossible can become possible with God.

Some of the ways that I have grown my faith have included:

  • I have intentionally blessed my spirit. I call my spirit to attention and bless it with increased faith. I bless it with knowing beyond a doubt that Father God can and will do the impossible. That Father God specialises in making the impossible the possible.
  • Personally experiencing miracles and healing.
  • Studying the Bible and what it says about faith, healing, God.
  • Surrounding myself with people of great faith, who know the Bible and live by the promises in the Bible.
  • Listening to great teaching about the promises in the Bible
  • Spending time with God asking Him the hard questions and growing in intimacy with Him.
  • Prayer ministry has been another way that has helped me to see some faulty beliefs that I had about God. When I now react in a manner that is inappropriate to a situation eg get angry, I try to take a few minutes to ask God, “Father God, can you please show me why I acted that way. What lie am I believing? After I have my answer, and confess that lie/belief to God, I then ask God, “What truth do you want me to know instead?”

Sometimes we don’t actually realise how much we have grown in a certain area until we are around people who have a different belief system to ourselves. This was very evident to me last week when I was asked to give words of knowledge at a healing course and then pray for people who came forward.  I was gobsmacked by how many people said, “My back’s killing me” and “I’m going blind and there’s nothing that can be done about it” or “God’s never healed me before”. It also struck me how many people assumed that the Doctor’s diagnosis of their condition was true and final.

One of the reasons I was astounded by these words were that I have realised that what we say out of our mouths has a direct correlation with what happens to us in life and whether or not we get our healing. (My next blog post will be on what we say and the impact it has.)

For us to see the Kingdom of Heaven here on earth, it will require us to go after it wholeheartedly. This is not for the faint hearted. Matthew 11:11 says, “And from the days of John the Baptist until the present time, the Kingdom of Heaven has endured violent assault, and violent men seize it by force.” I am not advocating violence. Here it is talking about violence as chasing after it with zeal and intense exertion. To press into it with fervour resembling violence and desperation. It expresses the earnestness that we need to have to be rid of all sin and unbelief in our life and to rid this earth of all power belonging to Satan.

Do you want to see God’s Kingdom established here on earth, here in your life? Do you want to see healing restored back to its rightful place as part of the normal Christian life?

Jesus, towards the end of His time here on earth, tells His disciples that “whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater than these” (John 14:12). Matthew 28:17 has Jesus saying, “All authority in heaven and earth has been given to me. Therefore go…” He gives us the authority to do what He has been doing.

Matthew 16:18 says, “… I will build My church and the gates of Hades shall not overpower it.”

Are you chasing after bringing Heaven (& all that is in Heaven eg health, love, peace, joy, extravagance etc) to earth?

How could you change your life or your belief system so what Christ commanded us to do and be, actually occurs within your lifestyle?

When Jesus Christ was on earth, He gave His disciples authority over demons, nature/weather, death, sickness, sin, poverty and everything that wasn’t in Heaven. We are given the same authority but it seems to be unusual to see us exhibiting that same authority that the disciples had and used.

For us to operate from a position of authority requires us to have some experience in that area. Heidi Baker prays with authority for anyone who is blind as she knows that they will obtain their sight. When Heidi Baker first began praying for blind people, she did not see any difference though for the first 100 blind people she prayed for.

 

                         But she persevered.

 

She then saw breakthrough and she now operates in amazing authority whenever eye problems are an issue.

What prevents us as Christians from operating in that realm and with that same authority?

I believe when we spend time with God and are intimate with God and truly know the Father’s heart for us, then we can’t help but know that He wants people healed and has given us that responsibility and authority.

My prayer is that you will ponder these questions and, if need be, make some life changing decisions and actions.

Feel free to comment below with your thoughts.

 

Prophetic Activations / Exercises to incorporate into your week:

The purpose of these exercises is to help us hear God’s voice in a clearer manner. They sharpen our senses to hear and recognise God’s voice and His way of communicating with us. This enables us to grow in our relationship with God and also to impart to others what God tells us for them. Feel free to use as many of these activations each week as you can. The more you practice, the sharper you become at hearing God’s voice. Enjoy! Remember that whenever you give another person a prophetic word or picture etc, please make sure that it is encouraging, edifying (strengthening) and comforting (1 Corinthians 14:3) and that it comes from a place of love.

1. Children / Families Activation: Draw an outline of a person on a piece of paper. Give a copy to everyone. Ask everyone to colour in or write or draw on a particular are of the body that God shows or tells them. Share what body parts are highlighted. Ask if anyone present has a pain or injury or needs healing for any of those body parts. Pray for those people, preferably getting the people who had the word of knowledge about a body part doing the praying for healing for that body part. If no-one present has an injury or needs healing, keep a look out for the next person you see who needs healing of that body part.

2. Group Activation: Get into pairs. Ask each person to listen to God for what to pray over their partner, particularly in the area of identity, intimacy with God and authority. Ask them to call their partner’s spirit to attention and bless their spirit with what God has shown them. Take turns blessing each other with this.

3. Beginner Activation: Ask God if there is a lie you are believing about operating in your God given authority that you have as a Christian? If He reveals a lie to you, repent and ask God to show you His truth. Then immediately start believing this truth and making it a part of your belief system and life style. Step out in faith in one area this week using your God given authority.

4. Intermediate Activation: Ask God to show you a person in authority who needs encouragement. Spend time with God getting a prophetic word for that person. Take time to ask God how (eg written or spoken) and when you are to deliver it to that person. Then do it.

5. Advanced Activation: Ask God to show you a new area and level of authority that He wants you to grow in. Ask God to highlight this to you and begin to contend for this in your life.

Identity – Living from a place of Victory (part 2)

Have you ever watched a young child automatically approach their father and reach up for a hug and a sit on the father’s lap, even amidst an important occasion for the father? This child automatically knows his or her position as a child of that father. Their identity is secure in their father’s love for them and their authority as a child of that father to approach him whenever or wherever.

When we do not know our true identity and we are not living in that, we leave ourselves wide open to everything that Satan can fling at us. I believe one of our greatest weapons in living a life of victory and defeating Satan is that of knowing and living in our true identity. When we combine this with using our authority as sons and daughters of the most High God, we have an amazing weapon, an amazing freedom, an amazing life.

Our identity is so very important.

We defeat our internal giants before we can take on external giants.

Becoming the person God sees us as is claiming and possessing our internal territory. Thus, if we are afraid and haven’t gone after inner peace with God, then we can’t expect to come against fear in the atmosphere or in someone else’s life.

I personally believe that how we see ourselves, the identity that we have from our perspective, will never be as great as how God sees us. God sees us as so brilliant and I don’t think we ever really fully comprehend the enormity of how God sees us as individuals. I believe that God is always inviting us to a deeper level of understanding of our identity and how we see ourselves. This is all tied up with our self worth and our values.

James Hird, a famous Melbourne footballer and coach, recently wrote an article in ‘The Age’ newspaper about Essendon football players and the drug controversy. His article included the following paragraph -“Football, rightly or wrongly, was our identity…over time (the controversy) stripped away our identity, our value and our worth. When people do that to you, you are vulnerable to go down a path…that maybe you wouldn’t have gone down otherwise.”

It’s so important that we don’t get our identity from what we do. This not only leaves us vulnerable, but it leaves us incomplete. Our identity is not about doing. It is all about being but it affects our doing. Our doing comes out of our identity and we must learn to separate them. Otherwise we will get caught up in a performance mentality.

Satan challenged Jesus about His identity. Matthew 4:1-11 is when Satan met with Jesus in the wilderness and challenged Jesus about His core beliefs – who He was. Satan also challenged Jesus to worship him. I believe our worship flows automatically out of who we are. When we grasp and fully believe who we are as sons and daughters of the most High King, we cannot help but worship God extravagantly. Worship flows out of who we are and who God is.

Once our identity is based on how God sees us, it is an easy next step to walk in authority. Just like worship flows automatically from our identity, so too does our authority.

Jesus, towards the end of His time here on earth, Jesus tells His disciples that “whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater than these” (John 14;12). Matthew 28:17 has Jesus saying, “All authority in heaven and earth has been given to me. Therefore go…” He gives us the authority to do what He has been doing.

Our identity affects our authority and the way we pray.

How we walk in our identity and authority as royal sons and daughters will automatically affect the way we pray. Whether we approach God as a desperate beggar or as a confident son or daughter affects the outcome. It also affects how Satan approaches us and what he knows of our weaknesses.

The quest to discover more of our true identity and to live from that place is one of the reasons that I am a huge advocate of prayer ministry or inner healing. I advocate that it is great to have an annual time of where you go deeper with God and receive healing and insight into more of who you really were created to be. Just like you service your car so that it continues to run smoothly, I believe that it is great to have a time of ‘inner service’ on ourselves so that we can deal with any small issues before they become bigger issues and also to dig down deeper into issues of self worth, value and authority.

Whenever we react in a manner that surprises us or we over-react to something, then it is definitely time to take a moment and ask God “What lie am I believing at the moment?” After God shares that with you, confess that lie to God and ask Him, “What truth do you want to replace that with God?”. God will always come through for you and help you replace lies with His truth.

Prophetic Activations / Exercises to incorporate into your week:

The purpose of these exercises is to help us hear God’s voice in a clearer manner. They sharpen our senses to hear and recognise God’s voice and His way of communicating with us. This enables us to grow in our relationship with God and also to impart to others what God tells us for them. Feel free to use as many of these activations each week as you can. The more you practice, the sharper you become at hearing God’s voice. Enjoy! Remember that whenever you give another person a prophetic word or picture etc, please make sure that it is encouraging, edifying (strengthening) and comforting (1 Corinthians 14:3) and that it comes from a place of love.

1. Children / Families Activation: Make up some cookie/biscuit dough. Divide into enough lots so that every member of the family/group has enough. Ask each person to fashion/mould a shape or something out of the dough that represents another person’s identity – that of who God says they are. If you have enough dough, keep going so that everyone can make something for every other person. Tell each other what you have created. Then cook the biscuits and enjoy eating them.

2. Group Activation: Make enough play dough so that every person has some. (Google ‘no cook play dough recipe’ for a quick and easy recipe.) Get into pairs and ask each person to craft something out of the play dough that describes their partner’s identity of how God sees them. Give your partner the crafted item and share the meaning with them.

3. Beginner Activation: Open your fridge or food cupboard. Ask God to highlight a particular food item. Ask God to then show or tell you how that relates to you and your relationship with God.

4. Intermediate Activation: Ask God to highlight a person to you this week who doesn’t realise their full identity in Christ. Ask them if you can share with them how God sees them.

5. Advanced Activation: Ask God to highlight an area of sin that your nation / culture has now accepted as a normal part of life. Spend time with God asking Him for His perspective on this and what response He wants you to make.

Worship – Living from a Place of Victory

Friends of ours live and work overseas and also have a house back here in Australia. They come back for a fortnight to Australia every 4-6 months. I will never forget my friend sharing how they always left Christian worship music playing on repeat in their Australian house when they returned overseas. My friend shared how they never had to worry about their garden as no weeds ever grew in it and she surmised it was due to the worship music saturating the atmosphere of her house and garden. One time, they had had someone stay at the house just after they had left for overseas. This person had turned off the Christian worship music whilst they had been at the house. They had not turned it on when they left. When my friends returned three months later, there were weeds two feet high all throughout the front yard.

Can worship make that much difference?

It seems totally absurb but our God is powerful and giving Him His worth through worship is extremely powerful.

I look at it from a different angle and say why wouldn’t it do that as worship changes everything.

When we worship, we give God all the glory and God can’t help but come and invade the praise of His people. With God present with us, our perspective changes, our actions change, and our problems seem smaller.

Worship changes atmospheres.

Worship changes our focus.

Worship helps us realise our identity and position in the heavenly realms.

I would rather be fighting from a position of worship and having ‘the joy of the Lord as my strength’ (Nehemiah 8:10) than be focusing on the devil and how to protect myself.

The devil will not co-exist with God and our worship. Thus, I much rather prefer to worship God and let the devil flee without giving him any attention.

When I was a young Christian, a lot of emphasis was put on “living a victorious christian lifestyle”. The only hassle was that it was all about living from a defensive position. The devil seemed huge and I had to build myself up and get rid of any sin in my life so as to be able to defeat him.

When I worship God, I am on the offensive, not the defensive. Worship becomes the first thing, in every situation. In fact, worship becomes a lifestyle. I love living from a lifestyle of victory and having the attitude and actions that we are coming from the position of the winning side. It changes my whole perspective.

We were made to worship God. If we are not worshiping God, then what are we worshiping? Whatever that is, it is an idol.

This is the first blog in a series of blogs covering living from a place of victory. This series will include blogs about the things we say and declare, living a godly lifestyle, changing atmospheres, blessing your spirit, spiritual ‘cleanliness’ before and after ministry, rest etc. If you are not a subscriber to this blog, I encourage you to subscribe so that you don’t miss out on part 2.

Prophetic Activations / Exercises to incorporate into your week:

The purpose of these exercises is to help us hear God’s voice in a clearer manner. They sharpen our senses to hear and recognise God’s voice and His way of communicating with us. This enables us to grow in our relationship with God and also to impart to others what God tells us for them. Feel free to use as many of these activations each week as you can. The more you practice, the sharper you become at hearing God’s voice. Enjoy! Remember that whenever you give another person a prophetic word or picture etc, please make sure that it is encouraging, edifying (strengthening) and comforting (1 Corinthians 14:3) and that it comes from a place of love.

1. Children / Families Activation: Buy an art canvas for each family member. Set up the paints and allow each person to paint their canvas background. When the paint is dry, grab some permanent markers. Write each person’s name in the middle of their canvas. Focus on one family member at a time. Brainstorm as a family the strengths of that person and the words that God would use to describe that person. Write these words on that family member’s canvas. You may like to hang each person’s canvas in their bedroom as a visual reminder of what God thinks of them.

2. Group Activation: Get into groups of 3. Elect one person to receive the prophetic word. The other 2 people in the group will play ‘prophetic table tennis’ – one person starts giving a prophetic word, the second person then carries on giving the prophetic word in the same vein of thought, then it returns to person number one to expand even deeper on that thread, then back to number two to expand deeper still. Try not to introduce any thing that doesn’t follow that thread. Instead, ask God how you can go deeper with just the one thread of thought. After you finish that one concept/thought etc, switch positions for someone new to receive a prophetic word.

3. Beginner Activation: Ask God to highlight to you an area of your home that seems dreary or unproductive or somewhere that you prefer not to relax in. Leave worship music playing quietly in that area for the next week/fortnight and see if it ‘feels’ any different or anyone else notices any change.

4. Intermediate Activation: Ask God for an encouraging Bible passage for someone undergoing a difficult season. Communicate this to that person in a loving, encouraging manner.

5. Advanced Activation: Ask God to highlight an MK (Child of a missionary) or a PK (Child of a Pastor). Ask God for a prophetic word for that child. Write a letter to that child highlighting what God has shared with you about that child and how great God sees them.

Hearing God’s Voice (part 4) – Growing in the Prophetic

Three years ago, our 11 year old daughter was invited to have afternoon tea with the Prime Minister of Australia, Tony Abbott. One of our first reactions as a family, after agreeing that we would do everything possible for her to attend, was to agree to draw (for the children) and write (for hubby and I) a prophetic word each for him.  It was just natural to think that way, almost ‘second nature’.

(Our children find it easier to express what they are hearing / seeing from God for a person by drawing a picture for them and writing a sentence or two of explanation.)

Several weeks later, I was amazed at the number of Christians who had commented to me that they would never have thought to write or draw a prophetic word / picture for him. This shocked me. Why wouldn’t you take the opportunity in person to do that. We didn’t include any Christian language. We were encouraging and strengthening in what we wrote and drew. We purely asked God, “how do you see him and what would you like to say to him?” and then we listened for God’s reply.

Reflecting on this later, I realised that several years earlier, we would never have thought to do it either. The journey we have been on over these last seven years has prepared us for this. We have specifically tried to take every opportunity that we can to write, draw, and speak prophetic words over people. We have incorporated it into our daily lives so that it is part of us. We have grown considerably in our gifting because we have practiced. I encourage you to practice and take every opportunity you can.

We have stuck to the basics of it being encouraging, edifying (strengthening) and comforting. We have tried not to use Christian language but begin by saying, “I sense that…” and not using “God says…”. We have never spoken or drawn negative things. If we ever did get anything negative, we would change it to the opposite and speak the positive, thereby giving life to what we said and to the other person.

Basically, there are four steps to take initially to grow in the prophetic.

Firstly, practice, practice, practice.

The more you practice something, the better you get at doing that activity.

I love prophetic activations for this reason. Prophetic activations are basically some exercises that you can do to help you practice hearing God’s voice and sensing what is on His heart for a particular situation or person.

At the end of each of my blogs on this website, “Unlocking the Gold”, I always compose five prophetic activations. They include one aimed specifically at families or groups of children, another one for groups, beginners, someone a bit further down the track and another for people who consider themselves quite advanced and have been operating in the prophetic for a while. You are most welcome to do the whole five each week.

The individual activations will take about five to ten minutes to do. Some may take a bit longer eg twenty minutes. I have found with my children that they hear God immediately and they are finished within five minutes whilst I am usually still trying to work out what God is saying.

My first year at operating in the prophetic, I used to write 3-5 birthday cards per week. At that time, I was involved in a weekly meal to help people who were struggling with life issues, usually suffering from mental illness as well, and I would write encouragement cards and birthday cards for these folk, as well as cards for friends and family. On the left hand side of the card, I would ask God what to write, listen to what I felt Him saying and then write it down. At the time, I was busy with young kids and would set aside the 30 minutes during the kids swimming lesson to do this, putting myself under pressure to finish them in this time.

Every time I went to the shops or had a coffee at a coffee shop, I would make a concerted effort to give the cashier or waitress a prophetic encouraging word. I would usually begin by saying, “I notice that you are (and go on to highlight an encouraging character issue)..” It was during this time that I noticed my gifting developing so much. I believe that it was due to my practicing and developing it.

I encourage you this week to look for ways to practice. Look for the hidden ‘gold’ inside a certain person and try to bring it to the surface by asking God to show you how He views them and what they need encouragement in. Then speak it kindly and gently to them in an encouraging and uplifting way. Remember to only speak words that are encouraging, uplifting and comforting, not negative at all. Use plain, everyday English. A great way to start the sentence is to say, “I sense…” or “I have a feeling that….” or “You are a … person who…..” or “I notice that ….”

  • Whilst in line at the supermarket, ask God to give you a few words to say to the cashier that will encourage and speak into their situation.
  • Ask God for people’s names and then write an encouragement card/email to them.
  • Leave a card with a prophetic word on it for the postman.
  • Drop an encouraging prophetic letter into your neighbour’s letterbox.
  • Every phone conversation you have this week, determine to pause and ask God what He wants you to release to the caller.
  • Find creative ways of writing and drawing prophetic words for your family / housemates. Leave them where they can discover them and be encouraged.
  • Realise that every time you come across someone who annoys you, it is an opportunity for you to discover the hidden ‘gold’ in that person and reveal it to them.

Go for it. Make it a part of your lifestyle. Enjoy!!

Secondly, intimacy with Father God

I have found that a hugely significant way to grow in the prophetic is to get closer to God. To become more intimate with Father God, Holy Spirit and Jesus. The more intimate we become with all three, the more we recognise the subtleties of what they say and do and who they are.

God is creative and He loves us being creative with Him. Experiment with how you relate with God. Change the place eg go for a walk on the beach during a storm, take a hike, sit in a coffee shop, rest in a quiet place. Change the how eg put on quiet music and meditate on God’s goodness, read the Bible, fast, be silent, go out into nature and touch that which the creator has created, try creating a piece of art, etc

We become what we behold. Thus, we need to be careful at what we are looking at. What are we listening to and watching on the television or our social media? Who do we surround ourselves with that are impacting on our soul and spirit? What are we feeding our spirit, soul and body? If we are exposed to the glory of God, we will be transformed. 2 Corinthians 3:18 – “And we, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into His likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.”

Thirdly, look at your true identity

I encourage you to go on a journey of discovery with God and yourself. Look at who God says you are. Discover your true identity. Find out how you are known in Heaven.

Explore the good, the bad and the ugly about yourself. God is a safe person and place. Be truly vulnerable with God and ask Him to reveal to you those areas you need to grow in eg any fears, shame, guilt etc. Spend time with God immersing yourself in being completely vulnerable with him and discovering what He thinks of you.

As you uncover your true identity and live that out in its purest form, the more likely you are to hear God and operate in an intimate manner with God. Thus, your prophetic skills of hearing and seeing from God will grow and you will want to release what God is sharing with you to others.

Fourth, take responsibility for your own growth.

You are responsible for your own growth. Do not expect anyone else to take this responsibility from you.

Some further ways you can help yourself to grow in your prophetic ability include:

  • Read books about the prophetic
  • Listen to podcasts
  • Find prophetic people and ask them to mentor you.
  • Keep a journal outlining the promptings you feel from God and what you have done as a result and the outcome (if it was apparent).
  • Ask a friend if you can record a prophecy you speak over them so as to listen to it back and hear what you say. Sometimes we can be shocked by how often we mumble or keep repeating ourselves.
  • Ask friends if you can ‘practice’ on them.
  • Find someone to have fun with on this journey and be able to spur each other on in your prophetic growth.

When you are intentional about growing in the prophetic and taking risks, you will see a huge improvement in your ability to give prophetic words and the depth of those words.

Prophetic Activations / Exercises to incorporate into your week:

The purpose of these exercises is to help us hear God’s voice in a clearer manner. They sharpen our senses to hear and recognise God’s voice and His way of communicating with us. This enables us to grow in our relationship with God and also to impart to others what God tells us for them. Feel free to use as many of these activations each week as you can. The more you practice, the sharper you become at hearing God’s voice. Enjoy! Remember that whenever you give another person a prophetic word or picture etc, please make sure that it is encouraging, edifying (strengthening) and comforting (1 Corinthians 14:3) and that it comes from a place of love.

1. Children / Families Activation: Place an assortment of Lego on the table and ask everyone to make something from God for the person on their left out of Lego. Set a time limit. At the end, encourage everyone to share what they made and why.

2. Group Activation: Have enough envelopes and slips of paper for each person in the group. Ask people to write their own name on a slip of paper, fold the paper so the name can’t be seen and put it in the envelope and seal the envelope. Gather all the envelopes and shuffle them. Pass the envelopes out so that every person has an envelope. Ask people to write on the outside of the envelope a prophetic word for the person’s name inside it. Set a time limit of seven minutes maximum. Ask people to then open the envelope and pass to the person whose name is on the inside. Let that person read what is written on the envelope for them.

3. Beginner Activation: Find a strong fragrance and take your time inhaling the aroma. Ask God to reveal to you what He wants to communicate to you through that fragrance.

4. Intermediate Activation: Ask God to speak to you through an advertising sign. Ask God to also highlight a person or situation that it speaks into. When you realise what that is, communicate the prophetic word to that person using the advertising sign as a base or springboard for your prophetic word.

5. Advanced Activation: Find a house or business for sale that has been for sale for a lengthy time and doesn’t seem to be selling. Spend time with God asking Him what to pray and then prophesy over that house/business. Observe over the next few weeks to see if what you prophesied makes a difference.