Encountering God part 2

Often I come across people desperate for a prophetic word. These people chase after prophetic people and hang off every word uttered. When challenged, they say they can’t hear God for themselves, or have a decision to make and desperately need to have a prophetic word.

Unfortunately, these folks are cheating themselves.

They are cheating themselves out of a vibrant relationship with the Living Almighty God. It is almost like they are taking second best. Please hear me. I am not saying it is wrong to get a prophetic word. Prophetic words are invaluable. What I am saying is don’t go chasing a prophetic word from someone. Chase God instead. Going to someone inferior to God for a word from God with that word filtered through that person’s experience. 1 Corinthians 13:9 tells us that a prophetic word is not the complete picture from God – “For we know in part, and we prophesy in part.”

Why encounter God for yourself?

The purpose of an encounter with God is intimacy with God. Pure intimacy. The outcome will be change within you and the presence of Kingdom values – peace, joy, freedom, healing, truth, etc.

Not going with feelings is crucial. If we have felt nothing, it doesn’t mean that we haven’t had an encounter with God. Be careful not to judge something based solely on your feelings. Sometimes we may not even realize we have changed, but others can testify that we seem more at peace, more kind, etc.

When we encounter God for ourselves, we experience a personal revelation from Him. We become aware of Him through our senses. We can see, hear, sense, feel, smell or taste God or the things of God.

Encountering God for ourselves is vital, as it is a method we hear from God for ourselves and others. Sometimes we can fall into the trap of hearing from God for other people, but we can struggle to hear Him when hearing for ourselves. We need to explore ways we can hear God for ourselves during all seasons.

Last blog post, we explored how there will always be good fruit from an encounter with Jesus.

What an encounter can look like:

Sometimes the language we use can be off-putting. The term ‘encounter’ is very Pentecostal. Initially, I struggled with the word because I falsely believed that I had to manifest physically by speaking in tongues, shaking, falling to the ground, groaning, etc. An encounter with the Heavenly Father is purely being aware of His Presence, His Power, His Person, His delight in us. It is a transaction of intimacy.

An encounter will be different for everyone. Some people may have a physical experience, others a quiet reflection. Others may sit quietly but feel that they have travelled spiritually to heaven or a place where they are with Jesus.

God is a personal God. Thus, everyone will have an individual experience. Don’t imitate anyone else.

One of the first times I allowed myself to imagine I was with Jesus was a time when we ended up (in my mind) on a wooden pier – laying down and peering through the holes in the slats at my life here on earth. I can remember asking Jesus about an issue I struggled with, and His answer was perfect. Many times since then, I have quietened myself and imagined Jesus and me lying on that wooden pier peering through the slats at issues in my life.

How do I have an encounter with Jesus?

Great question. Everyone is different, so what works for you may not work for me.

I find it easier for me if I quieten my heart first or if I am worshipping God. Thanking God and coming into His Presence. I then allow my cleansed imagination to join with my Heavenly Father or Jesus and let my thoughts flow.

There are several places in my home that I have stewarded to create ‘thin’ places. These places feel like there is no discernable difference between heaven and earth. They are places usually of beauty, refuge, safety, and sacredness. It is typically a location or moment treated with reverence and awe.

Spending time with God can steward a thin place. You may find a favourite comfy chair where you love reading the Bible or praying becomes a place where you hear God’s voice clearly. It may be a place you steward silence and reflection. Because I love praying to God regularly in the shower and when ironing, I find I hear God’s voice immediately as soon as I go to those places. The same as the beach. I love walking along the beach, especially in rough weather, as I hear and sense God. My husband loves the bush and finds it easy to encounter God there.

I encourage you to posture yourself, to steward a thin place for yourself.

Encountering God demands obedience

Last week, I covered several times in the Bible where people changed after an encounter with God.

In Genesis 32, we see Jacob wrestling all night with God. Jacob gained a new identity and confidence. Our identity comes from who we are in God, so whenever we encounter God or spend time with Him, we become more attuned to our true identity.

In Genesis 6, God encountered Noah and revealed His plans to Noah. The outcome was Noah’s obedience. Noah trusted God despite the culture and everyone else’s opinions and fulfilled what God has asked him to do.

In 1 Samuel 3, the young boy Samuel heard the voice of God four times. Eli discounted the first two. The third time, Eli realized a transaction was occurring. Our response is to believe and be quick to obey.

Types of encounters:

1. The waterfall

A common encounter people seem to love, but one which I find harder to experience God is the waterfall. Close your eyes. Quieten your heart and focus on God. Imagine yourself walking under a waterfall. Imagine yourself feeling the water washing over you, washing away your cares and concerns and everything that’s not from God. Imagine the water filling you up like the Holy Spirit. Take deep breaths of His infilling Presence. Enjoy a time of transaction with the Holy Spirit. When you are ready, imagine stepping out of the waterfall, carrying that which has filled you up.

2. The Gift giver

Jenny and Ken Hodge from Christalignment taught our Stairway Healing Rooms this simple encounter, and it is so effective.

Close your eyes. Imagine yourself in a safe place that you love. What does it feel like, look like, smell, taste like? Take a few moments to arouse your senses in that place. Imagine that Jesus walks into the scene. In His hands, He is holding a gift. What does the gift look like – the shape, the wrapping, the colour? Watch as Jesus comes towards you. How are you feeling? Imagine Jesus handing you the present. You take the present and unwrap it. What is it? Is there anything else about the present? Is there anything Jesus wants to share with you or tell you? Continue to explore the present and the meaning of the present with Jesus?

3. Memory stones / triggers

Intentionally place something that will remind you of God and a particular time or a miracle in a specific spot. Use that memory stone to remind you to pause, thank God and focus on Him for today. (I rarely use the word trigger as it can have negative connotations but several friends use the term to trigger them to pray and connect with the Father’s heart.)

4. Left and right hand

Stand up and close your eyes. Quieten your heart towards God. Think of an issue you need answers for. Imagine placing the issue in your left hand. Hold your left hand out, palm up. Allow space to be quiet and transact with God. Now, put your right hand up in the air. Ask God to show you the answer to the issue in your left hand. Ask God to put the answer in your right hand. Pull the answer down from heaven into your reality.

5. Other ways

Some people love journaling and writing out their prayers to God and listening to Him for His answers as they write. Others may find meditating on a single Bible verse, repeating the verse a several times and reflecting on the words a valuable method of encountering God. Worship, speaking in tongues, creative prayer, drawing, painting, and dancing to worship music are beneficial.

It is vital that you discover ways where you can hear God for yourself and have an encounter with Him and His goodness, His mercy, His love and freedom, peace and joy.

Next blog post, I will explore some methods we can use when finding it hard to hear God or encounter God.

Prophetic Activations / Exercises to incorporate into your week:

Every blog post 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: Gather warm, fuzzy material or favourite blankets and give a piece of material/blanket to each person. Ask them to get in a comfortable position, whether sitting or lying, and wrap that material around them, imagining God’s arms around them giving them a hug. Have music playing softly and encourage them to ask God questions and listen to His response. Have paper and drawing materials available for children to draw/write their experiences.

2. Group Activation: Take the group outside and ask them to look for something that is unusual or captures their attention or a unique sound or smell. Partner up and prophesy over their partner using the object that caught their attention as the starting point.

3. Beginner Activation: Try the ‘Gift-giver’ activation from above. Close your eyes. Imagine yourself in a safe place that you love. What does it feel like, look like, smell, taste like? Take a few moments to arouse your senses in that place. Imagine that Jesus walks into the scene. In His hands, He is holding a gift. What does the gift look like – the shape, the wrapping, the colour? Watch as Jesus comes towards you. How are you feeling? Imagine Jesus handing you the present. You take the present and unwrap it. What is it? Is there anything else about the present? Is there anything Jesus wants to share with you or tell you? Continue to explore the present and the meaning of the present with Jesus?

4. Intermediate Activation: Ask Jesus to highlight to you a person who is desperate for an encounter with Him. Ask Jesus what He would love you to do about this and your part to play in this person receiving a touch from Jesus.

5. Advanced Activation: Carve out some time this week to go to a ‘thin’ place where you can spend extended time with God. Ask Him for a prophetic word for the US Supreme Court in relation to the Roe verse Wade ruling being deliberated. Decree and declare the response aloud. Ask God if there is anything further He would have you do.

Encountering God part 1

The first time someone asked me to lead a class in an encounter with God, I was terrified. I was teaching at our church’s college on the prophetic (hearing God), and the Co-Ordinator began each session with a time of encountering God. I was okay with experiencing God for myself, but had never led others to encounter Him apart from when I led people to commit to Christ. The Co-Ordinator had always manifested physically, e.g. by shaking or a physical reaction etc when encountering God, and I wasn’t into physical manifestations. I felt out of my depth.

I encouraged my assistant to lead the encounter instead.

Later, as I reflected on leading others to encounter God, various truths replaced the lies in my mind. One truth was that we don’t need to have a physical manifestation to prove that we have encountered God.

God is amazing. He is so unique. So present. So everywhere. God is so concerned with the individual.

God is not a cookie-cutter, releasing the same experience to everyone.

God is never short on time, so He never takes shortcuts and gives the same stuff to everyone in a hurry.

God loves everyone. He desires intimacy and a relationship with us all. God will do virtually anything for us to experience Him.

God is a God of many and the individual.

Thus, it may differ completely from how others encounter God when we encounter God. There is no right or wrong. In saying that, you will know it is not God if it doesn’t meet the character qualities of God. E.g. Satan can masquerade as the angel of light (2 Corinthians 11:14), so if we see an angel of light that is unkind and unjust or deceiving, that is not God.

How do we know if we have encountered God?

How do we know if we have encountered God–we will be changed. There will always be fruit from the encounter. You may experience peace or joy, or healing. Maybe you feel calmer or have received an answer to a decision. You may feel closer to Jesus. A truth may have ‘popped’ into your head. You may be more aware of God’s presence, power, person, and delight. You may have heard, seen, sensed, or felt God.

Encountering God means you experience God’s Kingdom values–e.g. peace instead of fear. Joy instead of blandness or lack. In an encounter with God, you can often experience movement, whether there is a movement in the grass background or you and Jesus moving, e.g. running together, dancing together. I often experience Jesus leading the way and showing me things. Light and colour will predominately fill the encounter, as they belong to God’s Kingdom.

There will always be good fruit from an encounter with Jesus.

Where can we encounter God?

Anywhere. Wherever God is, there is an opportunity and availability to encounter Him. Encounters are not limited to a church service. I often encounter God walking on the beach or around our neighbourhood. Often, we can experience God unexpectedly, amid pain and suffering, despair, joy and laughter, with friends, or alone. Most times I am showering, or when ironing, I encounter God. I turn my affection to God, my thoughts to God, and imagine myself with Him. He always responds to an invitation to be close to us.

Some examples from the Bible:

The Bible is full of people who encountered God. Saul was an enemy of God with a fierce determination to kill as many Christians as possible. God met him unexpectedly on the road to Damascus in Acts 9 with a blinding light, resulting in Saul becoming blind until Ananias prayed for him and Saul was healed.

In Isaiah 6, Isaiah wrote how He encountered God in the year of King Uzziah’s death. He saw the Lord, high and exalted, seated on the throne. Above Him were seraphim, each with six wings.

In Numbers 22, the angel of the Lord stood in the middle of the road and stopped the donkey. The donkey saw the angel of the Lord, but Balaam didn’t. Thus, not only people encountered God.

In Acts 2, many people experienced a sound like the blowing of a violent wind from heaven. Tongues of fire rested on them. They were filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke in tongues. It was a time when many people encountered God.

Many people have asked me how they can encounter God regularly as an experience, not just in the initial experience of deciding to follow Jesus. Thus, I will write a series of blog posts outlining simple ways you can encounter God wherever you are.

An encounter experience for you to try:

A simple encounter you may enjoy is meditating on God. I find it easy to do this if I am somewhere comfortable and have music playing softly in the background. I turn my thoughts and affections to God. I imagine myself in a favourite place with Jesus beside me. I then ask Jesus a question and wait for Him to reply. I chat with Jesus about any concerns or queries I have or spend time restfully in His presence.

Many people call this ‘soaking’. A great video that explains this further is a free resource from Beth Kennedy if you sign up for her blog. You can find it here: https://godisgoodstories.com/

In the next blog post, I will unpack encountering God further along with a different experience for you to try. The five prophetic activations listed below will also contain different ways of encountering God.

Prophetic Activations / Exercises to incorporate into your week:

Every blog post 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:  Gather paper and drawing supplies. Ask everyone to imagine they are at a park with God. Ask them to draw the scene ie what they are doing and where God is and what He is doing etc. Instead of drawing, you may actually want to go to a park and briefly ask these questions when you arrive. Ask everyone to look to see where God is and what He is doing. Encourage everyone to share.

2. Group Activation: Get into pairs. Each person asks God to show or tell them a weapon He wants to give to their partner and why. Spend a few minutes asking God more questions about the weapon, then share with their partner.

3. Beginner Activation: Spend a few minutes with God, asking Him what game He would love to play with you. Go with the first thought through your mind and ask further questions of God to understand more fully what game God wants to play with you and why.

4. Intermediate Activation: Ask God to bring to your mind someone who is currently fearful. Ask God to show you His heart towards that person and how God would love you to respond to that person.

5. Advanced Activation: Ask God to show you His heart for the people of Ukraine and/or Russia. Spend time asking God further questions about His desires for these countries. Speak aloud a declaration or a prophetic word from your time with God.

Identity part 2

Seeing little children revel whilst they play, occasionally glancing towards their parents, warms my heart. These children are safe and secure in their identity. They freely play, unaware of any danger or insecurity. Subconsciously they realize they are part of a ‘bigger’ picture, they belong to others and their security comes from that. They are safe and secure to explore and ‘be’, play, and do because they are connected to their source of security and identity.

On a mission experience overseas, we witnessed time and time again a young, adopted boy wandering off from his parents and the safe compound we lived in. He seemed to have no fear and was often found being cuddled by strangers. Many folks incorrectly commented on how this boy was so secure in his identity. This was a concern for me as that is not security in identity. Instead, it showed a lack of attachment.

When we have children, we name them and give them an identity, both through their name and being in our family. As our children grow, they take on our family values and lifestyle. Our identity is not in isolation. It always comes from being in relationship.

In my last blog post, I challenged readers to look at the starting place of identity by looking at who God is. When we are in relationship with God, we obtain our identity from Him. Thus, we need to know who God is and revel in Him with awe and wonder to then understand who we are, how God made us, and our identity.

A great starting place is in the Bible. In Exodus 34:6-7, God explains who He is. He is compassionate, gracious, patient, loyal, faithful, love, just, forgiving. The Bible is full of who God is.

Once we realize who God is, we receive our inheritance and generational blessings of identity. It is through our identity that we become those attributes of who God is. We can then become compassionate, full of grace and patience, loyal, faithful, just, forgiving, full of love.

Our identity is in who God says we are.

An easy way to discover whom your God is, is to look at who or what determines who you are and what you are worth.

I encourage you this week to spend time with God, gazing in awe at Him and His Majesty. Search your Bible for how God describes Himself and revel in who He is.

Next week, I will further explore identity and who God says we are.

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:  Gather craft supplies and cut-out cardboard human bodies. Ask everyone to receive from God a picture of who God says they are, then decorate their cardboard cut-outs accordingly.

2. Group Activation: Have blank pieces of paper with each group member’s name at the top. Fold over the name so it is not visible. Pass the sheets around so everyone has one piece of paper each. Ask group member’s to ask God for a statement/sentence of identity for the person whose name is on the paper. Once written on the paper, fold the paper again so the writing isn’t visible and pass the paper to the person on their left. Repeat several times. Then ask everyone to unfold the paper and read out the identity statements over the person at the top of the paper they are holding.

3. Beginner Activation: Gather writing and drawing supplies and sheets of paper. Spend time with God, reading His Word, documenting His character attributes, revelling in Him with awe and wonder. Then ask God to show you who He says you are. Listen, watch and sense as to who He says your identity is.

4. Intermediate Activation: Spend time revelling in God and His majesty with awe and wonder. Ask God to highlight someone to you who is struggling with their identity. Ask God to show you how He sees them. Communicate this appropriately to the person.

5. Advanced Activation: Ask God to show you a ruling family (whether constitutional or governmental) who are struggling with their identity. Spend time with God, seeking His heart for this family and its leaders and their true identity. Proclaim their true identity and ask God if He wants you to communicate this to them and how.

Growing your Spirit

Thirty years ago, hubby and I drove into an Australian town well known for its New Age and witchcraft practices. We glanced around the place for a gift shop and for somewhere to eat, but before we had time to find anywhere, I asked hubby if we could drive on to the next town. I sensed something ‘awful’ in the atmosphere, and it felt like a fear descended on me. Fast forward twenty years, and hubby, the kids, and I drove back into that same town, and it ‘felt’ completely different. We loved the place so much that we hung around that place for several days.

                   What was the difference?

A Christian church had a massive impact in the town ministering to the New Age community, but the New Age and witchcraft presence was still ‘thick’. The major difference, though, lay within me. I had grown and matured as a Christian, but I now knew my identity as a daughter of the Most-High King. I was also aware of ‘brushing’ off negative atmospheres (see here). My spirit had grown enormously and could now ‘defend’ itself instead of being intimidated.

How do you ‘grow’ your spirit?

Just as your physical body needs nutrition to grow, your soul needs love, safety, and care to grow, and your mind needs intellectual stimulation to grow, your spirit also needs to grow.

The top five ways to grow your spirit:

  1. Intimacy with God through worship, relationship, obedience, decreasing sin, and open communication with Father God, Holy Spirit and Jesus.
  2. Grow your identity in God. Go after your inner healing. Have prayer ministry regularly to deal with issues.
  3. Speak/pray the Bible over yourself.
  4. Pray in tongues often, i.e. daily. 1 Corinthians 14:4 says, “anyone who speaks in a tongue edifies (or builds) themselves up”. One of the most effective methods is to pray in tongues each day.
  5. Bless your spirit.

How do I ‘bless my spirit’?

I first realized the enormous impact of calling one spirit to attention and blessing it after I found some teaching from Arthur Burk and Sylvia Gunther and started practising on my family. Our son is a spiritual thermostat. He quickly and automatically ‘picks up’ the spiritual atmosphere of a room, place, or land region. This caused numerous hassles earlier in his life until we became more fully aware of what was happening. (A particular city in Australia has the ruling spirit of rebellion over it, and when we stayed there, our son became very rebellious. We tried disciplining him with no effect and began to doubt our parenting until I ‘connected the dots’ and realised what was happening. As soon as I identified it, our son’s behaviour immediately normalised.)

Thus, when I began calling my family’s spirits to attention and reading a blessing over them of a night, this son loved it. Each night he would ask me to ‘do that thing that makes me feel good’.

As a side note, I used to call people’s spirit forth eg “Jane, I call your spirit forth”, but a Pastor’s wife became quite anxious about that, as if I was trying to make people’s spirit travel. Thus, I now call them to attention. Look at it as if you are asking them to stand up on the inside and take notice. Eg “Jane, I call your spirit to attention” or “Jane, I call your spirit to take notice of what I am about to say”.

Over time, I have noticed a massive effect on people whenever I bless people’s spirit. I use this all the time in our Church’s Healing Rooms at the end of each person’s ministry time. It is uncommon for me not to use it when praying for someone.

I have several friends who will call their spirit to attention each night and bless their spirit and their spouse with a blessing. There is no magic formula for what to say. Go with what you feel Father God is saying to you. With my kids, I will often bless their spirit with their identity, their prophetic words, the giftings they have, their dreams and their sleeping, and their relationship with Father God, Holy Spirit and Jesus.

David Tensen has an excellent course on this. He bases his blessing on 4 D’s – delight, design, destiny and dominion. I can never remember the 4 D’s, so I ask Father God to show or tell me how to bless each person.

I have crafted a short blessing for you, my readers. Please feel free to try it and speak it over yourself, inserting your name into it.

Blessing:

“(Your name), I call your spirit to attention and bless you with knowing that Father God loves you so much. There is nothing you could do to make Him love you any more or any less. (Your name), Father God had you in mind before He created the world. He ordained your parents, time in history and birth date. I bless you with knowing how precious and valuable you are to God, your family, friends and community. I bless you with knowing that Father God delights in you and loves being with you. I bless you with an ever-increasing intimacy with Father God, Holy Spirit and Jesus.

I bless your spirit with knowing that God has gifted you with unique gifts and has created you with your personality. He so loves you and has incredible plans and purposes for you.

(Your name), I bless your spirit with realising more deeply today the reality of God’s love in your life. I bless you with experiencing today Father God romancing you in a fresh novel way, with you seeing, hearing, and experiencing his extravagant and generous nature and goodness and kindness. I bless you with receiving His kisses of joy and delight in you today. I bless you as you walk out the next few days and weeks and months ahead that you will see the hand of Father God, Holy Spirit and Jesus on your life clearly. I bless you with incredible insight and discernment from God, with hearing Him at a deeper level and seeing what He is up to in the spiritual world.

(Your name), I bless you that wherever you walk, you carry the peace of God and change atmospheres; that people will know that a child of the Most-High God has been there. I bless you with leaving a lingering fragrance of the presence of God wherever you step. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”

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:  Ask God to share with each of you a present He would like to give another family member at the moment. Write down or draw what you feel God is showing, telling or giving you for that person. Then share with that person, putting it into a blessing to pray over them eg ‘Jane, I bless you with peace.’

2. Group Activation: Partner up and spend a few moments listening to God as to what He would like to give your partner. Pray a blessing over them, calling their spirit to attention.

3. Beginner Activation: Spend time worshipping God. Then spend time listening to God, focusing on Him and soaking (meditating) on Him and His goodness. Write down, draw or capture what you feel God saying, showing or giving you.

4. Intermediate Activation: Ask God to show you a Pastor in your local area who needs encouragement. Visit them or send a letter to purely pray for them, bless and prophesy over them.

5. Advanced Activation: Ask God to show you someone in a significant position of power who desperately needs encouragement. Find a way to encourage them by blessing and prophesying over them.

Growing your Faith part 2

In 1 Corinthians 12: 9, we read some people receive a gift of faith. This is different to the ‘saving’ faith each of us has when we accept Jesus Christ as our personal Lord and Saviour. The gift of faith is extraordinary confidence in God’s promises, power and presence. It is a strong and unshakeable confidence in God, His Word and His promises. It is a fearless and zealous reliance on God and His ability to advance the Kingdom.

You can ask God for the gift of faith. Mark 11:24 “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.”

Other ways to grow your faith include:

1. Surround yourself with people of great faith

After we returned from three months in Mozambique at the Iris Harvest Mission School, many friends commented on how my faith had enlarged. They would often comment that they could see a massive difference in my faith level pre and post-trip.

It puzzled me. As I reflected on our (exhaustive) trip with two little kids, the growth in my faith didn’t register. Instead, I focused on the tough aspects, the challenging aspects, friendships made and the highlights.

Maybe I didn’t see that my faith had enlarged because it seemed ‘natural’ what I believed after being around people who also had a ‘big’ faith.

The words ‘we become who we surround ourselves with’ are true. Surround yourself with people of great faith, and it ‘rubs off on you’. When I spend time with godly men and women who love God, have seen God work mightily in their lives, often through trauma or difficult circumstances, I am inspired. As Proverbs 27:17 says, “As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” (NIV) or as it is written in The Passion Translation, “so one person sharpens the character of another”. When I am around those of great faith, I am inspired to believe bigger, to grow my view of God and what He is capable of, and to realize my true identity as His royal daughter and all that encompasses. I am also challenged with any faulty thinking or being judgemental. This calls me up into purer thinking, beliefs and actions.

Thus, in wanting to grow your faith, surround yourself with men and women of great faith. You may say, ‘but Jane, I don’t know anyone like that where I live’. Then find someone somewhere or start reading biographies of people with great faith.

When we returned from Mozambique, my husband encouraged me to buy the entire set of “YWAM Christian Heroes Then and Now” books for us as a family to read. These books contain nuggets of gold. Written about missionaries who had sacrificed a lot, they all had one thing in common – that of their incredible love for God and their great faith in God.

An excerpt taken from ‘George Muller: The Guardian of Bristol’s Orphans YWAM Christian Heroes Then & Now’ by Janet & Geoff Benge is: One morning, George Muller had 300 orphans in his care but no food or money for their breakfast. The children were all seated at the dining tables with a plate, mug, and cutlery in front of each child. George shared with the children that God would supply their breakfast, having no idea where it would come from. He prayed and thanked God for the food that God was going to give to them. George knew without a doubt that God would not fail the children. Instantly there was a knock on the door. A local baker entered carrying a huge tray of delicious smelling bread. He shared how God had woken him up at 2 am that morning to bake bread for them. Another knock followed, with the milkman entering, asking for help. His wagon wheel had broken right outside the door, and he needed to lighten the load, so he had ten full cans of milk to give to them.

Reading numerous accounts like this, where people trusted God and took God at His Word, enlarges your faith.

Surround yourself with people who believe that “nothing is impossible with God” (Luke 1:37) and live accordingly.

Folks, this is why testimonies are so crucial. Hearing testimonies grow your spirit. Revelations 12:11 “They triumphed over by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony”.

Testimonies release power.

Testimonies release hope.

Testimonies release faith.

Surround yourself with people who strengthen your view of God.

2. Inner healing

Regularly ask God to reveal any false beliefs or lies you believe about Him or yourself. It’s easy to incorporate faulty or incorrect thinking into your life. Have prayer ministry and address issues in your life.

Romans 12:2 “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” We are required to keep renewing our mind to that of Christ’s.

2 Corinthians 10:5 “we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.” Only keep those thoughts in your mind which God would keep in His mind and aligns with His Kingdom.

3. Obey immediately

The quicker you obey God and His promptings, the quicker you grow and become more Christ-like. The more God will trust you when He sees you are eager to grow and be faithful.

4. Minimise sin

When God highlights an area of sin or shortcoming to you, immediately deal with it. Don’t play with sin. Run fast from it. This applies to what you watch, read, and do.

5. Take risks

A significant part of growing your faith is trying, practising, and doing. If you will never step out and take risks in the supernatural, then you can’t expect to grow. If you see someone sick or injured, immediately ask God, “What do you want me to do?” or “Do you want me to pray for healing for them?” Then do it!! Do not expect to pray and see people raised from the dead if you have never prayed for a dead person before to come back to life. Take every opportunity.

6. Identity

Realizing your identity as a royal child and all that entails grows your faith. Know your identity – who you are in Christ. Know what the Bible says about you and who you are.

For your identity to be true and solid, you need to let go of any false beliefs. Receive prayer ministry/inner healing to align your heart and mind with God’s perspective of you. Healing inner wounds, especially from childhood or from your experiences, is a great place to start. No parent is perfect. No matter how great your parents are, there will be some wounding. I believe it helps to have some prayer ministry regularly (i.e. annually or every second year) just to make sure that no faulty thinking sticks and causes any issues. There are numerous types of inner prayer ministry available.

7. Authority

John 14:12 records Jesus saying, “whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these”.  Once you have the revelation in your life of your true identity, you can then walk in the authority that Christ has given you. When you read the Bible and see what Jesus did and realise that Jesus said that we would do even greater things, you start to walk in that authority. The authority of seeing healings, miracles, living a pure lifestyle. This is the life you were created for and are called to be walking in every single day. As you experience this lifestyle, your faith will grow. As you experience God answering prayer and see miracles, your faith grows.

8. Worship God.

As you worship and meditate on God, His goodness, His greatness, His ability, His promises, His power, and His presence, your spirit grows. As your spirit grows, your faith grows.

As you worship God and give Him His worth, your view of God and His magnificence enlarges as well. Decree God’s goodness and greatness. Psalm 71:15-16 Psalm 89:15-17 (TPT).

As stated last week in part 1, take God at His Word. Get into the Bible. Read the Bible and know what His Word says. Then believe it.

I would love to hear your thoughts on how you are growing your faith in God.

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:  Spend a few moments each asking God what He loves about them. Then share, draw or write it down.

2. Group Activation: Pair up and ask each other what area of their life they need a breakthrough in. Spend a few moments hearing from God, then ask everyone to prophesy over their partner.

3. Beginner Activation: Spend time with God asking Him how you can specifically grow your faith.

4. Intermediate Activation: Ask God to highlight a Pastor in your area that is not from the church you attend. Spend time with God hearing His heart for this Pastor. Write an encouragement card to this Pastor, expressing God’s heart for Him/Her.

5. Advanced Activation: Spend time with God asking Him to reveal His heart about the Covid vaccine. Prophesy and decree the future of the vaccine.

Excerpt from my new book!!

Friends, I am so excited. My new book is about to be released and today’s blog post includes a chapter. It is a  30 Day Devotional from Mark’s Gospel entitled:

Ministering like Jesus

How to Grow in Healing, Deliverance and Miracles


DAY 15: MARK 5:22-34 

Then one of the synagogue leaders, named Jairus, came, and when he saw Jesus, he fell at his feet. He pleaded earnestly with him, “My little daughter is dying. Please come and put your hands on her so that she will be healed and live.” So Jesus went with him. A large crowd followed and pressed around him. And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years. She had suffered a great deal under the care of many doctors and had spent all she had, yet instead of getting better, she grew worse. When she heard about Jesus, she came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak, because she thought, “If I just touch his clothes, I will be healed.” Immediately her bleeding stopped and she felt in her body that she was freed from her suffering. At once Jesus realized that power had gone out from him. He turned around in the crowd and asked, “Who touched my clothes?”

“You see the people crowding against you,” his disciples answered, “and yet you can ask, ‘Who touched me?’”

But Jesus kept looking around to see who had done it. Then the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came and fell at his feet and, trembling with fear, told him the whole truth. He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.”


Jesus loves people. He loves healing people and bringing transformation to them. He loves addressing the real issue.

In today’s reading, we see two stories interwoven – two people from the extremes of society. The end of the first story about the synagogue leader and his daughter carries over into tomorrow’s devotion.

A synagogue leader well placed in society has a 12-year-old daughter (verse 42). He asks Jesus to come to heal his daughter, and Jesus immediately goes with him, no questions asked. We can only presume that doctors could not do anything to treat her.

We then see a woman with bleeding issues, who has been ostracized from society for twelve years. She is considered unclean and cannot touch anyone. No doctors could heal her either. She suffered physically and emotionally, and financially as she was now penniless from seeking healing.

The number twelve was significant for both people. Twelve represented faith, perfection, authority, power, completion.

Both this woman and Jairus exhibited faith in Jesus before they felt or saw the healing. They both fully knew and believed that Jesus was the answer. They did not question Jesus’ ability to heal them.

This woman comes up behind Jesus where He cannot see her and touches Him, making Him ‘unclean’ by doing this. She does not want attention. She wants to remain ‘invisible’. Maybe that was why she did not face Him and ask Him to heal her. Instead, choosing to extend her arm to touch His garment discretely. It seems like she was hoping He would not notice. Due to her bleeding condition, which made her an outcast, she was ‘invisible’ to society, and this was no different. She did not want anyone, even Jesus, to ‘notice’ her. Maybe she thought that she was not good enough, rich enough, significant enough, influential enough.

Nursing a critically ill lady in Coronary Care, we were on the brink of an emergency. Alarms were loudly beeping, her blood pressure plummeting, her heart rate severely dropping, and this lady knew she was in grave danger. The doctors were just outside the door, discussing her condition and how soon we could transfer her to another hospital. She needed more intensive care and access to new treatment methods before receiving a heart-lung transplant.

I had been sharing with this lady about Jesus. This lady recognized that Jesus could heal and was good at healing. But she did not believe that Jesus would heal her. She thought that she was not good enough; that she had not led a life worthy of being healed.

There was no time left. I frantically uttered, “Heart be healed in Jesus’ name.” That was it. She was deteriorating so rapidly I did not have time for anything else as I was juggling medication infusion lines.

The alarms frantically changed their sounds, and as I looked at all her heart and lung measurements from all the tubing we had in place, I realized things had stabilized.

The Doctors flung the door open and hurried in, expressing disbelief at all the measurements on the monitor.

“What’s happened?” they asked. “What did you do?”

What could I say? ‘I prayed for this lady, and God healed her.’

The Doctors preceded to take all the measurements to double-check. Yes. The monitor readings were accurate. The recordings were so good that this lady was able to be taken off the heart-lung transplant list as she no longer needed a new heart. Still on the lung transplant list (until her next admission when she was prayed for again and was totally healed.)

I was speechless. God could heal in an emergency like this. God could also heal people when they did not believe they were worthy enough. It is not about their relationship with God. It is all about God and the goodness and kindness of God.

The woman in the passage today knew the imbalance of societal value and feeling worthless. Here was Jesus, a powerful man, on the way to another powerful man’s house. Not only was she a woman, and a woman of a lower societal standing, but an outcast due to her bleeding.

Yet she persisted.

After everything she had overcome, she finally reached Jesus.

Immediately this woman knew in her body that she was healed. Instantaneously. Jesus also felt the difference as the power left Him. How often do we ‘feel’ the Holy Spirit as He connects with whom we are praying?

What I find extremely interesting is that Jesus could have just kept going about His business. People were crowding Him, jostling Him, pushing Him. But He still stopped and acknowledged this woman. He wanted to meet her face to face, to talk with her. To re-establish her standing in society by pronouncing her healed, thus cleansed, and blessing her with peace as she left.

This woman ends up telling Jesus the ‘whole truth’. Do we tell Jesus everything? The whole truth?

Jesus finishes the interaction by calling her ‘daughter’, a title that indicates intimacy, acceptance and position. All the things she was missing in society due to her illness.

Do we take that extra time to ‘finish’ what Jesus is doing? With this lady, the healing and transformation were miraculous, but it was the restoring her place in society that was the ‘icing on the cake’, the completion. Jesus was letting her know, face to face, that she was now completely healed in all areas.

Reflection:

  • How desperate am I for my healing? To what lengths will I go to receive my healing?
  • Do I tell Jesus the whole truth about myself, how I am feeling, my doubts?
  • What is my understanding and experience of the goodness and kindness of God?
  • Do I allow people to meet face to face with Jesus for themselves?
  • Do I take the time to see what else Jesus wants to restore in a person’s life after they have received healing? Do I take that extra time to allow Jesus to ‘finish’ what He is doing?

Prayer:

Jesus, thank you for Your stunning example of how You treat people. How You are always willing and available to take the extra time with people, despite the apparent pressures around you.

Help me Lord to follow Your example.

Lord, may I be an accurate representation of Your kindness, goodness and love to others. I decree today that I will make time to show kindness to others.

Help me to have the faith of this lady and Jairus and fully believe that You are the answer to all my needs.

Lord, I commit to sharing my innermost thoughts and feelings with You. I desire to hold nothing back from You. To linger in Your presence and remain close. To spend time with You, no matter what. Lord, I declare that I will make us a priority today.

In Jesus’ name. Amen.

The key for me today is:

 


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:  Put some favourite music on quietly and spend time as a family asking God to show or tell you what He thinks of you each. Then ask God who He would like you to encourage this week. Ask God how you could best encourage that person.

2. Group Activation: Compile a list of your group member’s birthdays. Allocate a different month, or a week, to different people within your group. Ask the group members to find a creative way of expressing how God views each person within their group. You may need to ask permission first to share contact details or arrange a zoom call for the group where members could share what they received from God for each person.

3. Beginner Activation: Spend time with God writing down everything you love about God. Then spend time listening to Him and writing down everything He loves about you.

4. Intermediate Activation: Ask God to show you a creative way of expressing God’s love for the workers at your local supermarket. Then do it.

5. Advanced Activation: Spend time hearing from God about the organization and people in W.H.O. (World Health Organization) & the United Nations Secretariat. Hear God’s heart and His purpose for these people and ask God what He would like you to do in response to what He has shared with you.

It’s Friday, but Sunday’s coming!

Have you been side-tracked by COVID-19 and your heart preparation for Easter sidelined?

I woke up this morning and realised this was occurring in our household. We haven’t even thought about Easter this year and it is next weekend. I feel like Easter has been hijacked. Christianity’s greatest historical moment pushed to the side, drowned by COVID-19.

Several times overnight the following sermon was swirling through my head. I first heard Dr Tony Campolo, a sociologist from USA speaking it when I was a teenager, but the originator was a Pastor involved in the Civil Rights movement, Shadrach Meschach Lockridge from Calvary Baptist Church, San Diego, California. (If you can watch it on YouTube, it is worth it!!) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cikenKl92Og

 

“It’s Friday. Jesus is praying. Peter’s a sleeping. Judas is betraying. But Sunday’s comin’.

It’s Friday. Pilate’s struggling. The council is conspiring. The crowd is vilifying. They don’t even know that Sunday’s comin’.

It’s Friday. The disciples are running like sheep without a shepherd. Mary’s crying. Peter is denying. But they don’t know that Sunday’s a comin’.

It’s Friday. The Romans beat my Jesus. They robe him in scarlet. They crown him with thorns. But they don’t know that Sunday’s comin’.

It’s Friday. See Jesus walking to Calvary. His blood dripping. His body stumbling. And his spirit’s burdened. But you see, it’s only Friday. Sunday’s comin’.

It’s Friday. The world’s winning. People are sinning. And evil’s grinning.

It’s Friday. The soldiers nail my Saviour’s hands to the cross. They nail my Saviour’s feet to the cross. And then they raise him up next to criminals.

It’s Friday. But let me tell you something, Sunday’s comin’.

It’s Friday. The disciples are questioning. What has happened to their King? And the Pharisees are celebrating that their scheming has been achieved. But they don’t know it’s only Friday. Sunday’s comin’.

It’s Friday. He’s hanging on the cross. Feeling forsaken by His Father. Left alone and dying.
Can nobody save him? Ooooh it’s Friday. But Sunday’s comin’.

It’s Friday. The earth trembles. The sky grows dark. My King yields His spirit. It’s Friday.
Hope is lost. Death has won. Sin has conquered. and Satan’s just a laughin’.

It’s Friday. Jesus is buried. A soldier stands guard. And a rock is rolled into place.

But it’s Friday. It is only Friday. Sunday is a comin’!”

 

This is powerful. It is full of hope. Yes, the world may look like it is Friday, but Sunday is coming. We may feel overcome, dejected, at a complete loss, but Sunday is coming. We may be hearing reports of doom and gloom, but Sunday is coming. Jesus triumphed on Sunday and defeated evil. Please folks, don’t give up before the end!!

We are called to be carriers of hope. Transmitters of hope, peace and joy.

Folks, it is time to return to our purpose. To what we are called to focus on, not on what the world is trying to get our attention with. Let us not become distracted. Let’s lead the way and be the prophetic people we are called to be.

 

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:  Buy some Easter eggs and write/draw letters of encouragement for people from God. Go for a walk and ask God which people’s doorsteps to leave them on.

2. Group Activation: As a group brainstorm creative ways of sharing hope and joy from God with front line workers during this time of Easter preparation and COVID-19. Choose an action from the list and ask God how you are to implement it.

3. Beginner Activation: Read the Easter story and meditate on it. Ask God to show you where you would have been in the story. Spend time with God hearing His heart for you in regards to this. Ask Him if there is an action He would have you do.

4. Intermediate Activation: Ask God to show you a way of prophetically encouraging your politicians and policy decision-makers this Easter. Then put that into action.

5. Advanced Activation: Spend time hearing God’s heart on transformation for people’s mindsets at this time. Ask God what part you have to play. Craft a declaration that you can decree that speaks life. Ask God what else He would like you to release at this time.

Prayer about Coronavirus

Earlier this week, I felt to write a crafted prayer for the use of our Stairway Healing Room Team Members in regard to the Coronavirus. This morning I feel to share it with you.

 

Prayer in regard to the Coronavirus

Heavenly Father, thank you that You are all-powerful, all-knowing and present everywhere.

Thank you, Father God, that You are love and that the Holy Spirit did not bring a spirit of fear but power, love and a sound mind (2 Timothy 1:7).

Father God, I decree and declare that I will not partner with fear and hysteria.

Father God, I decree and declare that I will look to You, listen to You, and trust You as the source of all wisdom and knowledge. I declare that I will have the mind of Christ and clarity of thought in regard to the Coronavirus. (1 Corinthians 2:15-16)

Father God, I partner with You and decree and declare that the COVID-19 virus and all similar viruses and strains become impotent now; that they all cease to exist now in Jesus name. I decree and decree in the name of Jesus Christ and through the power of the blood of Jesus Christ that all transmissions of the virus be halted now.

Father God, I decree and declare that news of Your love, power, kindness, goodness and miracles fill the media and sound waves from this point on.

I partner with You, Holy Spirit, and decree and declare that I will live in a healthy manner and keep my body healthy in all areas and in improving my immune system.

In the name of Jesus Christ, I call my spirit to attention and bless it with micromanaging within my body the immune response to all foreign viruses.

Thank you, Father God, for the promises in Your Word, especially Psalm 91, that as I dwell in the shelter and Shadow of You, I will be shielded from all harm and that Your faithfulness will be my shield.

Thank you, Heavenly Father, that You know the plans for me, plans to prosper me and not to harm me, plans to give me a future and a hope. (Jeremiah 29:11)

Heavenly Father, I ask now that Your peace, presence, mercy and healing will come upon all those currently affected with the Coronavirus. For all those living in isolation or fear, that Your presence and peace and kindness will surround them.

I partner with You, Holy Spirit, and decree that I will look out for my neighbours, the elderly and those suffering from the effects of the Coronavirus and the fear surrounding it.

I decree and declare now that I will appropriately share the Good News of Jesus Christ with everyone I am able to and that many will turn to You, Father God, during this time.

Thank you, Jesus, that You came to bring life and to bring it abundantly. (John 10:10).

In Jesus’ name. Amen.

 

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: Spend time with your children, explaining at an appropriate level to your children about the Coronavirus and reading a couple of key verses from the Bible (2 Timothy 1:7, Jeremiah 29:11, and Psalm 91). Have paper and pencils/crayons/textas and each draw a picture for your family in regards to what you feel God is showing, telling or giving you in regards to the Coronavirus. Maybe even have playdough available for each person to make something to show how they are feeling about the Coronavirus.

2. Group Activation: Spend some time seeking God in regards to a prophetic act  (something you do in the physical that has spiritual implications) that you can do as a group in regards to the Coronavirus situation. Finish by spending time hearing from God and prophesying what you hear, sense and see from God about the outcomes of the destruction that has occurred (ie prophesy into being the opposite of the negatives that have occurred).

3. Beginner Activation: Spend time with Father God, meditating on His love. Look up Scriptures on overcoming fear. Ask God to show you someone who is struggling with fear in relation to Coronavirus. Write a prophetic declaration for them from what you hear, sense and see God revealing to you through Himself and Scripture.

4. Intermediate Activation: Spend time with Father God, lifting your nation’s leaders up to Him. Ask God to show you what to pray at this time for your leaders and your nation. Turn your prayer into a prophecy and declare it.

5. Advanced Activation: Spend time with God asking Him His perspective of the Coronavirus and the impact and future of it. Ask God to show you the outcome and key to the end of the coronavirus. Prophesy to the coronavirus.

Creating your own Prayer Closet

For the first twenty years of my marriage, I strongly disliked ironing. I now love ironing. What caused the 180° turnaround?

Prayer.

Not prayer that I would love ironing.

Prayer whilst I was ironing.

When the kids were younger, ironing was the one place I was never disturbed. I found that I finally had a few minutes of peace – mental and physical. I then began to use that time to pray for friends and start interceding for them. I then realised that some friends were consistently asking for prayer and there were so many issues popping up in people’s lives that I was spending more time praying for them than my own husband and kids.

I made a change to pray for my family to begin with whilst ironing. Now, I can’t believe how quickly the time seems to go when I’m ironing a basket of clothes. (Whilst writing this blog post, I have just realised that when I am in the laundry, I look at a blank wall. After googling ‘prayer closet’, I have now received inspiration to put some artwork and Bible verses and encouraging pictures on that wall for inspiration when praying.)

I also have found that since I use that time in the laundry to pray, it has created an atmosphere of prayer in there. I can sense it when I go in there.

Concerted prayer in the one place changes the atmosphere over that tiny piece of earth. Where I stand whilst ironing has a ‘grace’ upon it for answered prayer. Whilst ironing, I often find myself asking God questions about various issues. Almost immediately I will sense the answer. It is like so much connection and relationship between God and I have occurred on that very piece of my floor, that God answers immediately. The atmosphere is rich with grace and mercy.

Much the same as our shower. When I have a shower, I often pray for friends. Now I have quick showers as I was brought up on a farm and on tank-water, we were only allowed one-minute showers. Thus, as soon as I jump in the shower, I ask God what He wants me to pray for a certain friend. Tuesdays I pray for my friend Katharine who does prison ministry that day. Almost immediately God will download to me what to decree and declare for her. So, I immediately do it. All up, 30 to sixty seconds maximum. Due to daily spending time in that place, the atmosphere has become rich in there so that I can hear God immediately. Like a ‘thin place’ between heaven and earth.

A thin place is a location where we can sense the divine more easily and readily. A place where the space between heaven and earth grows thin and the Sacred and the secular seem to meet.

A ‘thin place’ comes from the mystical world of Celtic spirituality. The Celtic Christians were known for believing, and practicing, that the most ordinary elements of everyday life are infused deeply with God’s presence.

Do you have the one or two places you love to spend time praying in? If not, I encourage you to find a place where you feel comfortable, where you are alone with God, where you won’t necessarily be disturbed and begin to build up the prayer ground in that place.

For inspiration, the movie “The War Room” inspired many people to build a prayer closet in their house. If you google ‘prayer closet’, there are oodles of photos for inspiration. For me, I prefer a portable prayer closet, in the shower or laundry or with my journal in a favourite chair. You may prefer out in nature, on the beach, during a walk in the park. It doesn’t matter where. What matters is that you have somewhere you feel comfortable spending time investing in your relationship with God.

 

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: Ask God to show, tell or give you a picture of how He sees your teacher. Share with the rest of the family or group. Draw a picture of this to give to your teacher. Share with your parents and maybe even make or buy something that resembles how God sees them.

2. Group Activation: Explain to the group that you will ask them to get up and move around the room. You will have some music playing and at short intervals, you will stop the music. As soon as the music stops, they are to find a partner. Then they have one minute to ask God for a book of the Bible for their partner and why that book relates to them. Allow a few minutes for people to share with their partner, but keep it short and snappy. Then repeat the process, with people finding new partners when the music next stops. At the end, debrief and see how many people received the same book of the Bible or if they received different ones but they were all applicable.

3. Beginner Activation: Grab a piece of paper and a pen. Spend time seeking God’s heart for yourself. Then write a letter to yourself from God.

4. Intermediate Activation: Ask God to show you a person in a leadership position who desperately needs encouragement. Seek God how you can most effectively give them a prophetic word that will encourage them.

5. Advanced Activation: Address the latest issue that has become a worldwide fear eg Coronavirus that began in the Chinese city of Wuhan. Ask God for His heart and His perspective on this and what He would have your role to be. Then do what He shows or tells you.

When the same person keeps asking for a Prophetic Word

Like clockwork, every few months, the same person would approach me for a prophetic word. They would start by explaining how they were wanting a prophetic word from me so that they had something to hang on to in their time of struggle.

Immediately this raises a red flag with me.

Firstly, they need God to hang on to in this time. God needs to be their source of comfort, inspiration, and wisdom during their time of struggle (in fact all the time) rather than me hearing from God for them.

Secondly, they have had numerous prophetic words in the past. Prophetic words are especially for such a time as this. Just because they are going through a new season of struggle, doesn’t mean that their ‘old’ prophetic word is no longer viable. Prophetic words can be for the ‘here and now’ but they usually seem to be for a few steps time. Prophetic words are meant to be ‘encouraging, comforting and strengthening’ (1 Corinthians 14:3). Thus, they are great to get out in times of hardship and work through and see what God wants to be for you during this time.

Prophetic words usually address identity and destiny. Who you are and who God wants to be for you during this time are what identity words are all about.

Hubby also has had similar situations where a certain single lady would, on a regular monthly occasion, ask him for a prophetic word. He addresses this issue by saying that he won’t give a person another prophetic word, when they keep asking, until they have worked through their last prophetic word.

Usually when people are asking for a new prophetic word and they have been given numerous prophetic words in the last year or so, it becomes a discipleship issue. The person need to be taught that they need to go to God Himself. To put in the time and relationship with Father God, Holy Spirit and Jesus.

Please never become a substitute for a person seeking God for themselves. Jesus was, and is, the only ‘go-between’ in our relationship with God.

If a person is having trouble hearing from God for themselves, you will have a far greater impact if you help them to hear or receive from God for themselves.

Start with helping them look at how much time they are setting aside to spend with God. Do they prioritise Him each day? Are they reading the Bible? Are they looking to God for their answers?

Then, you may help them to have an encounter with God or give them tools to spice up their relationship with God.

Some of these tools may be to:

  1. Try spending time with God in a different setting eg in nature, at the beach, outside, in a different chair, etc.
  2. Try setting aside a different time of the day to specifically focus on God.
  3. Try reading the Bible a different way eg using an audio version or a new app or a different version or a DVD version. The IF:Gathering app has numerous amazing four week Bible study series on it which I have found extremely helpful.
  4. Try writing out verses from the Bible each day.
  5. Ask God to show you pictures or images of yourself or your day.
  6. Put worship music on and rest with worship filling your head.
  7. Find new ways of being in awe of God and thanking Him.We are not in the business of making people reliant on us. We are not their Saviour. We need to be pointing them to God Himself.

We are not in the business of making people reliant on us. We are not their Saviour. We need to be pointing them to God Himself.

 

Leading people through an encounter with God is effective for the here and now but it also gives them a tool for when they are stuck again.

Leading people into an encounter with God can be very simple.

  1. Ask the person to get into a comfortable position and close their eyes to help minimise any distractions.
  2. Ask the person to imagine that they are in a favourite place for them. Ask them to share with you what it looks like, smells like, feels like.
  3. Ask them to then imagine Jesus coming into that scene. Imagine that they see Jesus walking up to them and sitting, standing, just being next to them or in front of them. What is He doing? What does He say?
  4. Imagine that He has a present He wants to give to them. What does that present look like? What shape is it? How is it wrapped and what colour is the wrapping?
  5. Unwrap the present. What is it? What does that mean to them?
  6. How do they want to respond to Jesus?

Variety is the spice of life. Just how you sometimes need to vary stuff in your relationship with your partner or children or friends, it is also helpful to vary things in your relationship with God.

I would love to hear of different methods you have used when someone keeps coming to you for a prophetic word and how you have helped them refocus back on to their relationship with God.

 

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: Lead children into an encounter like the one above, imagining that Jesus has a present for them. Ask them questions to find out what the special present Jesus has for each one of them.

2. Group Activation: Buy an assortment of small chocolate bars that have different names eg Cadbury favourites. Place them in a bag deep enough so that you can’t see what you are selecting. Have each person put their hand in the bag and bring out a chocolate. The person then asks God for a prophetic word about the name of the chocolate bar for a person in the group. Hand the chocolate bar to the person as you share the prophetic word with them. If it is a large group, perhaps split into several smaller group, each group having their own chocolate assortment in a bag.

3. Beginner Activation: Open your calendar/diary before God. Ask Him to show or tell you something significant that you need to realise and what you need to do in response.

4. Intermediate Activation: Ask God to highlight a family to you. Spend time with God hearing or seeing what is on His heart for this family as a group and for the members individually. Draw or write the encouraging response and then ask God how you are meant to communicate it to this family.

5. Advanced Activation: Dream with God for one thing to change in the world this year and what the change could look like. Ask God to highlight to you your part in bringing about that change. Then ask God to show, tell or give you a strategy for your part.