What is one thing you desire to hear? That you are worthy. Loved. Precious. Valued.
As a Christian, what would you love to hear from God?
When we prophesy, we partner with God to communicate His heart to others. We become God’s conduit. When we prophesy, it is as though we are holding up to the person a mirror angled between them and God. When we prophesy, we communicate God’s heart and desires for that person. We are helping them to see and hear what Father God sees and hears and feels about them. When we prophesy, we try to ‘get out of the way’ as much as possible. We try to minimize any of ‘us’ and maximize more of God.
God is far more concerned with our identity and what we think of ourselves than our destiny.
Thus, when we prophesy, identity comes first.
Speak identity first. Then actions, destiny, and influence.
When we believe and are born again, we become perfect in Christ. Our identity changes into spiritual perfection. We are perfectly righteous, perfectly healed, perfect in all ways. Hebrews 10:14 “… he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified” or “who are being made holy”.
Our identity can take a while to catch up to how God sees us. Sanctification is the process of understanding and applying to our life and experience who we already are in God’s eyes. Our mind needs renewing to our Biblical identity, and this enables us to become transformed into Christlikeness.
Numerous people in the Bible didn’t see themselves as God viewed them. Gideon, in Judges 6, is a classic. Fearful. Hiding in a winepress. An angel comes and tells him he is a mighty warrior and will save a nation—a direct contradiction to how he saw himself.
In Exodus 3 and 4, Moses is privileged to have an angel of the Lord visit him in a burning bush and God himself dialogue with him. God explained what He required of Moses and how God would make it occur. Moses then replies in Exodus 3:11, “Who am I that I should go to Pharoah and bring the Israelites out of Egypt?” Moses had an identity issue and felt inadequate and unworthy. Yet again, in Exodus 4:10, Moses tries to dissuade God from using him by saying, “Pardon your servant, Lord. I have never been eloquent, neither in the past nor since you have spoken to your servant. I am slow of speech and tongue.” Not only did Moses not understand how God works, but He had forgotten who he (Moses) was and his privileged upbringing in Pharoah’s court. Moses did not understand his identity in God’s eyes, and he certainly wasn’t living it out.
Jeremiah was another example. In Jeremiah 1, we read of God calling Jeremiah to be a prophet to the nations. Jeremiah replies, “I do not know how to speak. I am too young.” Jeremiah did not understand who he was in God’s eyes. He didn’t understand his identity.
Usually, people are not manifesting and living their true identity, not living how God sees them. Prophesying is helping people see themselves through God’s eyes. Then, they can live out their calling. Once they understand who they are, then they can live out their destiny.
When you prophesy, release the person’s identity first to help them understand who they are in God’s eyes. Then, release their destiny. The same goes for prophesying over churches, groups, businesses, cities, nations.
Identity before destiny.
I can remember one of the first times I received a prophecy. It was on a chilly morning as the sun peaked over the horizon in Mozambique. I can remember hearing that my eyes were focused in the eyes of God and that the Lord and I had the same gaze. The prophecy talked about healing, restoration and reconciliation gifts, nation-building, etc, but these all came from my eyes focussed in the eyes of God and us both having the same gaze.
This challenged me to spend time with God. To become more intimate with God. To understand who I was and to focus on God and His gaze.
Identity before destiny.
The world is currently in an identity crisis. People are finding their identity in the wrong places. Fear of man is paramount. Fear is dominating over love in many areas. People need to understand who they are and who’s they are.
Clues to someone lacking understanding of their true identity include:
- Fear of man
- Lack of personal confidence and self-worth
- Insecurity, fearful, jealous, full of doubt
- Difficulty accepting our strengths and weaknesses
- Other people set our agenda
- Acting in a manner that doesn’t glorify God
- Seek other’s approval and acceptance
- Focused on the negative
- Afraid of being alone or in community
- Feeling anxious or depressed
- Believing others are better than yourself
- Lack of internal peace
- Habitual or addictive sins through which we seek relief from our fears
- Sense of inferiority
- Never admitting we are wrong
- Meek and compliant
- Controlling personality
- Acting differently around different people
- Fear of comparison, disapproval or rejection
- Not able to accept compliments
Insecurity is a warning that we are vulnerable to danger. It is a signal that we need to take protective action.
Insecurity is an invitation. God is inviting us to find security in Him instead of in our false beliefs of who we are and what we’re worth, etc. Our identity is who we understand ourselves to be at our core. It needs to be in who God says we are.
Prophecy challenges how we see ourselves and, through a process, upgrades that vision to how God sees us.
When we prophesy, it is essential that:
- We prophesy from the Father’s heart, with God’s love as our motivation.
- The content of the prophecy lines up with the character of God.
- We are not prophesying out of our woundedness or from a personal agenda.
When I give a prophetic word, I like to ask God first, “Father God, how do You see this person?” What are Your thoughts towards this person?” Then I ask God, “What are Your plans for this person?” This usually leads me to speak identity into a person, then destiny. Our destiny comes from our identity.
When we give people a glimpse of their reflection in a mirror that is angled towards God, we open up the potential for someone to discover their true identity.
Prophetic Activations / Exercises to incorporate into your week:
Every week I list 5 prophetic activations/exercises under children/family, group, beginner, intermediate and advanced. The purpose of these exercises is to practice to help us hear God’s voice in a clearer manner. They sharpen our senses to hear and see and sense God 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: Play the game ‘headbands’ but with identity statements. Take it in turns writing one word that symbolizes how God sees that person. Don’t let the person see it but place it on their forehead or pin it to a hat that they wear etc. The person has to try to guess what the word is that God sees them as.
2. Group Activation: Give everyone a piece of paper and a pen. Ask them to write a letter to an important person, the names you have but will share with them afterwards. Males write to males, females to females. Ask them to capture God’s heart for that person and the identity, adventure and destiny that God has for that person. At the end, share how that person is themselves ie the letter is for themself from God.
3. Beginner Activation: Ask God to place a person’s name on your heart who may be struggling with identity. Spend time with God asking Him to show you His heart for that person. Ring them up or write a note to them, sharing what God has revealed to you about them.
4. Intermediate Activation: Ask God to show you which emergency workers need encouragement. Ask God to show you how to encourage them and what He would love you to do in response.
5. Advanced Activation: Ask God to show you His heart for the country of Haiti which earlier today experienced a horrifically damaging earthquake. Ask God how you should prayer and prophesy into their future as a country and for the people.