How to War With Your Prophecies

September 23rd, 2011

What really is a prophecy?  It's a speaking forth of the heart and mind of God.  Have you ever received a personal prophetic word?  If you did, wasn't it awesome?  The prophetic is very important to me.  It is such a blessing that I esteem highly…first, because someone has chosen to yield themselves as a vessel for the Holy Spirit on my behalf.  Secondly, because my Daddy, the Lord of this universe, has taken the time to speak into my life and into my circumstances to bring present or future direction through the prophet – or comfort, edification and exhortation through one of my brothers or sisters in the Lord.  I feel honored when God does that because I understand that God doesn't waste His breath or my time!  If He is speaking forth something into my life, it's for purpose.

The Bible states that all can prophesy and that it is to bring edification, exhortation and comfort.  What does that mean to you?  It can mean consolation, motivation, a confirmation or strengthening, a provoking to good works and to a deeper walk with God, to take away weariness and affliction.  It can also mean relating near, a taking away of the feeling of God being "oh so far away" that we can never relate to Him.  It makes Him come near in bodily form, one-on-one to you so that you can relate to Him.  He is not far away somewhere sitting on a throne…He is right here speaking into your life.

Well, the Bible tells us to WAR with those prophecies that have gone before us.  So, we have a responsibility and a "charge" from the Lord…

1 Timothy 1:18-19  "This charge I commit to you, son Timothy, according to the prophecies previously made concerning you, that by them you may wage the good warfare, having faith and a good conscience, which some having rejected, concerning the faith have suffered shipwreck of whom are Hymenaeus and Alexander, whom I delivered to Satan that they may learn not to blaspheme…"

There are 8 things that we need to know about our prophecies…

  1. They help you to wage a GOOD warfare against the enemy
  2. They bring to light God's will and purpose for our life.  We begin to see ourselves through God's eyes and what we are made for.
  3. If we study them out, they can build our faith to believe God for them to come to pass – in His timing, His way and in full completion.
  4. They enlarge our vision and take us out of our comfort zone.
  5. They teach us to have faith and a good conscience before God because we have received it as a word from Him.
  6. If we reject them, we can have a "shipwreck" in our faith because we are in essence rejecting the Lord Himself and His desire and plan for our lives.  This is serious – didn't Paul say that he turned Hymenaeus and Alexander over to Satan for doing so because they needed to learn not to blaspheme?
  7. They are a word of the Lord directly to us and to our circumstances that can help you realize a plan of the enemy in advance.
  8. They help us to discern strongholds and bring prayer strategies.

So, I want to address for a moment the word "blaspheme".  What does that really mean?  It means to speak reproachfully, revile, use abusive language, disapprove, discredit, disgrace, rail at, to be evil spoken of.  That is what those who reject God's word to them do…they discredit God!  In Titus 1:16, it tells us a bit more about this type of person…"they profess that they know God; but by their works they deny Him, being ABOMINABLE and DISOBEDIENT and unto every good work REPROBATE." 

Paul also said that those very prophecies would be the tool to wage a good warfare if applied with faith and a good conscience.  So, why did God set it up to war with words?  Well, it has to do with a principle in Hermeneutics called the "First Mention" principle.  This is a principle of Biblical interpretation and understanding that states that the first time a subject is mentioned in the Scriptures, it carries with it a meaning which will be consistent throughout the entire Bible.  So, it makes sense that most first mentions will be in Genesis, at the beginning 🙂

In Genesis 2:16-17 God is explaining some ground rules to Adam.  He commanded Adam, 'of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it, you shall surely die'.  Later, in chapter 3, when Eve (and Adam) are confronted by the devil, they are deceived.  What went wrong?  The only spiritual weapon that they had was God's word.  God said don't eat it.  God SAID.  He didn't put up a fence.  He had no barriers.  He just gave His word and that was enough.  When they questioned that, they were open to the wiles of the enemy because they laid down the very weapon God had given them to use against the enemy…His WORD.

Jesus understood that God's word was the means to defeat the enemy.  That is why, when he was drawn into the wilderness to be tempted, he was able to walk away victorious.  This first mention principle had carried over.  In Matthew 4:4 he answered, "it is WRITTEN".  In 4:7 he said, "it is WRITTEN."  In 4:10 Jesus said, "it is WRITTEN".  Jesus understood that the word of God is one big prophetic utterance to the children of God.  He understood that it was a tool – the only one given from the beginning to defeat the enemy – and he wielded the words of the prophets that had gone before Him and won the victory.  He spoke out the words of God that had come forth through the prophetic inspiration and guidance of the Holy Spirit.

So, here we are today, with an understanding that God has given His word so that we may have the victory for our lives.  He has spoken through the prophets so that we may know that good and acceptable will of God.  What we have to do now is to wage that good warfare Paul talks to Timothy about. 

We already know how to war with the written word of God.  When we are sick, we recite "by His stripes I was healed" and "the Son of Righteousness rises with healing in His wings".  Yet, when we receive personal prophetic counsel, we just sit back and think that all we need to do is agree with it and wait for it to happen.  This is an incorrect response.

The Word tells us to wage a good WARFARE, to war.  War means to be on ACTIVE service, to fight.  War is an action word – it's physical, it's vocal and it's purposed.

So, how do we go about doing this?

  1. You need to be in agreement with the Bible that the prophetic and prophets are for today and not just in Biblical times.  You need to know and apply it as present day truth.
  2. You need to now it's from God, not an individual, and get into agreement with it.  If you don't like it or if you're unsure if the person delivering the word is a proven person – grounded in God and submitted to authority – then it may be difficult for you to get into agreement with it and it may be best to not let them speak into your life unless your oversight knows them.  But, if it's scripturally accurate, from a proven person, yet you're still not sure and are struggling with it, then bring it to your leadership for confirmation.  If it's from God, regardless of whether you like it or not, you need to line up with it and settle it in your heart.  God always knows what is best for us.  Remember, He won't call you to something you hate; but if you seek Him about it, He'll give you His heart on the matter so that you can line yours up. 
  3. Once that is settled, you should get your prophecies in written form.  It makes it easier to study them.  I type mine out and keep them in a notebook.  I've implemented a color-coding system that makes it easier to find specific things God has said repeatedly to me (I've received my fair share of words from God).  As I flip through that notebook, sections of my prophetic words that talk about my husband are highlighted one color, sections about being a warrior are another color and so on…I did this so I can have a quick reference when I need to stand on what God has said to me personally on specific topics.
  4. Lastly, you need to take it one line at a time and pray it out in faith.  Do not add to it, delve into it.

With all of that  settled, it's time to war!  I am going to be very transparent and use an example of one of my personal prophetic words from Prophet Bill Lackey to equip you and train you on how to war effectively, on a higher level, with a word of the Lord.

Don't worry about the family or the matters at home; don't worry about the issues round about you.  Don't worry about the factors where you feel you fall short.  And the Lord says, even where you feel like that you've done your best in so many things, and its not good enough, the Lord says even this night I'm pleased with you;'

Okay, so I am going to stop there (yes, there is more after this) and train you to see what God has said so far…

1.  The first thing to notice is that God said, "Don't worry" three times.  The number 3 is the number of completion.  God is saying that in every area, in complete fullness, there is no need to fear or have concern.  This tells me that I have allowed fear into my life regarding these three specific areas:

  • family and matters at home
  • issues going on around me
  • the factors where I feel I've fallen short

So, I start off by repenting for allowing fear into my life.  I turn each of these areas over to the Lord, one at a time and allow Him His proper place in each one of them.  I renounce that spirit of fear and feed those areas with the word of God concerning His goodness.  I stand on the scriptures that say God has not given me a spirit of fear, but of peace and love and a sound mind.  I state that, "as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord" and "my household shall be saved".   I begin to intercede regarding the issues around me instead of dwelling on them in fear.

2.  Then, I notice that God says I feel like I've fallen short of some expectation.  This expectation is not His, it's mine.  I have set an ungodly standard for myself.  How do I know?  Because God says He is pleased with me.  So, who am I disappointing?  Myself.  So, again, I repent for setting an ungodly standard, for not seeing myself as He does and for not spending the time with Him in His presence to be able to see the proper boundaries.  I recognize that I am trying to do things in my strength, not His…"my best" is really pride.  I perceive it as better or easier and I can now realize that it's why I never feel good enough.  I renounce it and replace it with humility and the ability to see myself in proper order.

3.  I recognize that God said I feel that way in "so many things".  I may be well on my way to being too works oriented.  If doing things is making me feel I could meet (or fail to meet) God's expectations for me, that's works!  It is also an open door for the enemy to make me feel sorry for myself (again, there's that pride!) because "I do so many things".  So, here yet another area of repentance and an opportunity to apply God's grace.  I know that God is more concerned with my heart and my attitude than He is in my workload in the Kingdom.  Relationship is more important to God and if I do things in my strength, where is the intimacy and reliance on God in that?

ALL that from that one little paragraph!  Are you getting it?  Here's more…

Daughter, I'm going to begin to release a greater joy and a greater excitement on the inside of you; and that spirit of counsel and wisdom is going to come out of you, a deliverance mantle, an anointing to touch many in the midst of the Body.  And the Lord says you're going to be an example to many women.  For the Lord says, surely O daughter of Zion, you went through such a trial during a season and even a depression came upon you.  But, the Lord says, I'm lifting that depression from you and you are going to be known as the woman of joy, says the Lord.

Okay, let's see what we can glean from this:

1.  He says He's releasing GREATER joy and GREATER excitement, so I need to receive it!  I have a choice.  It's more – GREATER – than what I already have.  I take a stand of faith and proclaim that I am anointed with the oil of gladness, just like Jesus was; that He is my joy and that I am excited about His plans for me.  I THANK Him for it.  So many times we forget that.  Even if my emotions don't feel that way yet, I declare and proclaim that they do.  I walk by the Spirit and not the flesh.

2.  He says that the spirit of counsel and wisdom is going to come out of me.  Now, we know Who the embodiment of wisdom and wise counsel Is – the Holy Spirit!  I recognize from this that in order to walk in wisdom, I need to spend more time in His word and in His presence to receive these things from the Holy Spirit.

3.  Next, I notice that the counsel and wisdom are a deliverance mantle.  The is a word of responsibility and an anointing.  I understand that an anointing is a serious thing to God and I take it as such.  I many not understand what He means by "mantle" so studying out what that means and how God uses mantles in the Word is a good idea.

4.  He says I'm going to be an example to many women – no pressure!  This tells me that I need to get before Him and allow Him to show me any areas in my life that aren't a good example.  Am I carnal in any areas?  Am I obedient?  Quick to repent?  Am I joyful?  Peaceful?

5.  Daughter of Zion?  What does that mean?  What or where is Zion?  I've been called that before, so if I don't know yet why He's repeated this title to me, I need to know!  When God repeats Himself, it's for a reason.  This is an opportunity for a Word study.  In fact, I already have a handout in my dance notebook about Zion with 30+ references and definitions regarding Zion. 

Side Note:  You know, God said to me over and over for a period of about two years that I would come to Him in the hard times and say, "why is it costing me so much when the others can get away with alot less?"  God would always respond so wonderfully to me and say that the anointing on my life is high and so the responsibility is high – or something to that affect.  It actually took me looking at that several times before it finally clicked!  Although God had responded to that brattiness and judgment with love, the Holy Spirit did finally show me that I had been a cry baby.  Just like Jesus told Peter that it was none of his business what happened to the other disciples, how God wooed and convicted others was not my business either.

6.  I went through a trial during a season – a SEASON.  So, I know that I shouldn't live there!  A season is seasonal.  Seasons change and so should this circumstance.  He also said I "went through" (past tense), so it's over.

7.  He's pointed out a depression has been upon me and that He's lifting it from me.  I'm not doing it in my strength.  I rely on Him to do as He has said.  I repent for allowing it entrance, declaring that I am a woman of joy and that He's turned my mourning into dancing again.  I ask the Holy Spirit to bring to my remembrance all of the good things I know God has done for me.  I allow a heart of gratitude and thanksgiving to well up within me and joy over the good things He still has in store for me.

8.  Lastly, I agree with God that my witness from now on will be as a woman of joy – that I will spread that joy, live that joy and walk in that joy.  I will speak to my emotions and command them to line up.  I will be a woman of joy!

WOW!  That was quite a lot of input from one small prophecy!  Isn't it good to know that you're not the only one in process?  God meets us right where we are and with what we need to grow.  You can do this with every one of your prophecies!  If God say's you're an intercessor, study intercession.  Put action to His word to you.  Proclaim and declare His word over your life and fortify it with the scriptures.  It's time to do our part.  We need to take action when God speaks to us.  So many times, we allow it to be a temporary balm for the situation we are facing at the moment.  We let it wash over us and then we stick it on the shelf.  Well, God said to war! 

As you do this, it will allow the Holy Spirit to expand to you what God's plans are and bring you into agreement with them on every front.  Any areas of apprehension and fear will be exposed.  Once exposed, you can confront them and root them out.  There's no need to be afraid – God is on your side and even the big things He has planned for you are realized only when you lean on His strength.  Now, that's warfare!  Be blessed 🙂

*I would like to thank Pastor/Prophetess Dawn McCann for her contributions in my life that allowed me to write this teaching.  I love you!  Thank you for continuing to pour into my life and the lives of others!

Run To The Battle

August 26th, 2011

Do you feel like you just keep getting sideswiped?  Does the rug get pulled out from under you, always at the wrong time?

The devil tries to keep you on the run.  He tries to make you feel oppressed, depressed and like a big loser.  He tires you out and leaves you empty and defeated…in no shape to help yourself or anyone else for that matter.  He's been eating your lunch…tell him to take a hike!  Matthew 16:18 tells us that the gates of Hades will not prevail against the Church…so why does it feel that way?  It should not be so!  It's time to overcome!

We need to take our eyes off of the circumstances swirling around us and look at what God has said.  We need to push back the gates of Hell when they try to advance against us.

Let's look at this story…

1 Samuel 17:1-7  Now the Philistines gathered their armies together to battle, and were gathered together at Sochoh, which belongs to Judah; they encamped between Sochoh and Azekah, in Ephes Dammim. And Saul and the men of Israel were gathered together, and they encamped in the Valley of Elah, and drew up in battle array against the Philistines. The Philistines stood on a mountain on one side, and Israel stood on a mountain on the other side, with a valley between them. And a champion went out from the camp of the Philistines, named Goliath, from Gath, whose height was six cubits and a span. He had a bronze helmet on his head, and he was armed with a coat of mail, and the weight of the coat was five thousand shekels of bronze. And he had bronze armor on his legs and a bronze javelin between his shoulders.

Now the staff of his spear was like a weaver's beam, and his iron spearhead weighed six hundred shekels; and a shield-bearer went before him. Then he stood and cried out to the armies of Israel, and said to them, "Why have you come out to line up for battle? Am I not a Philistine, and you the servants of Saul? Choose a man for yourselves, and let him come down to me. If he is able to fight with me and kill me, then we will be your servants. But if I prevail against him and kill him, then you shall be our servants and serve us."  And the Philistine said, "I defy the armies of Israel this day; give me a man, that we may fight together."  When Saul and all Israel heard these words of the Philistine, they were dismayed and greatly afraid.

The devil does not have to defeat you, he just has to stop you.  The devil uses intimidation.  In the above story, Goliath was the embodiment of that.

1 Samuel 17:40-46  Then he took his staff in his hand; and he chose for himself five smooth stones from the brook, and put them in a shepherd's bag, in a pouch which he had, and his sling was in his hand. And he drew near to the Philistine. So the Philistine came, and began drawing near to David, and the man who bore the shield went before him.  And when the Philistine looked about and saw David, he disdained him; for he was only a youth, ruddy and good-looking.  So the Philistine said to David, "Am I a dog, that you come to me with sticks?" And the Philistine cursed David by his gods.

And the Philistine said to David, "Come to me, and I will give your flesh to the birds of the air and the beasts of the field!" Then David said to the Philistine, "You come to me with a sword, with a spear, and with a javelin. But I come to you in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. This day the Lord will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you and take your head from you. And this day I will give the carcasses of the camp of the Philistines to the birds of the air and the wild beasts of the earth, that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel. Then all this assembly shall know that the Lord does not save with sword and spear; for the battle is the Lord's, and He will give you into our hands."

David responds to Goliath by saying that, not only will he take Goliath, but the entire Philistine army!  When David went out to meet the Israelites, he left the sheep with a keeper…he knew ahead of time it was time to take care of Goliath.  He said, "I used to keep Father's sheep" (vs. 34).  David carried Goliath's head back to Jerusalem and his armor as a reminder of God's faithfulness.  Why did David overcome when the whole army was at a standstill?

  1.     David was mad
  2.     He came in the name of the Lord
  3.     He was not moved by appearances
  4.     He knew the end before the beginning
  5.     There was a cause
  6.     It was HIS cause

 

James 4:7  Submit to God, resist satan and he will flee from you.  Resist = actively oppose.  What would make the devil run?  He has the ability to be hurt and bound by YOU in Christ's name.  Cast him into the dry places where he'll seek rest and find none (Luke 11:24).  When you do what David did, you'll inspire other's who couldn't.

*I would like to thank Pastor/Prophetess Dawn McCann for her contributions in my life that allowed me to write this teaching.  I love you!  Thank you for continuing to pour into my life and the lives of others!

More Training Scenarios

August 10th, 2011

Growing as a leader helps you train those you oversee with more compassion and authority.  You are better able to effectively impart the vision of the house and hear the voice of the Lord.  Sometimes circumstances come along and leave us stumped as to how to respond correctly.  Here are a few scenarios for you to consider:

When someone leaves the church with a wrong motive (or in the wrong manner), and they say to you, "Will I still be able to call you?"  or "will you be mad at me?"…how do you respond?

Here is one way to approach this…inquire as to why they would want to call you – have you been sympathetic to their sin in the past?  Are you someone who has a hard time confronting in love?  Are they looking for someone to agree with their sin in order to justify it?  Counsel without authority is useless – be suspicious and know their motive for seeking you out.  They should seek counsel where they are now attending church – unless God says otherwise.

One of the members of the church is thinking about leaving and they come up to you and say, "the church over there has more ministry opportunities".  How do you respond?

I would ask them this…"are you seeking a ministry or are you seeking God's position/place for you?  Do you understand that you need to seek God where He wants you?  Be careful you are not leaving the place where God is feeding you from – there is a corporate destiny that you are a part of.  God sets those in the Body as HE chooses.  Did God call you over there or are you trying to promote yourself where God has not called you?"

How would you respond to some of these negative thoughts that the enemy could give you as a leader?

I am so overworked!    Response:  Delegate!  Spend more time with God and get a game plan to organize/prioritize your time…poor time management is often the cause of feeling overworked.

No one knows how much I am really doing!   Response:  Who are you doing it for?  Check your heart.

So-and-so talks to the pastors more than I do!   Response:  This is jealousy, pure and simple.  Just repent already.

What if the pastors did something and the thought comes to you "I would never do it that way"?  Response:  This is a heart issue and an authority issue.  There is an element of rebellion and judgment in your spirit that needs addressing immediately.

Dear ones, do not be afraid when you are unsure of what to do.  There were many times I picked up the phone and called an elder or my pastor for wisdom.  I  still lean on that wisdom to this day.  I confess that I have made many mistakes along the way, but God is bigger than my mistakes and His grace is truly sufficient.  He has covered over my errors with His enabling power and has grown me in the process. 

He loves us too much to let us stay the same!  Praise God!  Let me know what you think about these scenarios.  If you have any of your own scenarios that you would like to share, or if you have any questions, feel free to email me via "Contact Us" or just place a post below.  God bless you!

Restoration of the Dance

July 3rd, 2011

The book of Ecclesiastes tells us in chapter 3, verse 4, that there is a time for everything under heaven – to weep, mourn, dance. Dance was lost from the early church during the Dark Ages. What brought the people out from the Dark Ages was the invention of the printing press by Gutenberg. The Bible was now in printed form. This period is known as the Restoration. This is the generation of the arts. This is also symbolic of our walk with God. We are in the dark spiritually until the Word (Christ) comes into our hearts and lives – then we're restored.  Dance and other movement-based arts have a strong purpose in the Body of Christ. Let us consider these:

Dance is a ministry.
We minister first and most importantly to the Lord. Then, that worship and extravagant outpouring of our hearts to Him ministers to others. As a priest unto the Lord, we are in the ministry of reconciliation.

2 Corinthians 5:18-20 "Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation, that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them and has committed to us the word of reconciliation. Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ's behalf, be reconciled to God"

Did you see that? It says that God Himself has committed to US the word of reconciliation! What a responsibility and an honor. Not only does this means of ministry go upward to the Lord, but God Himself also ministers unto us through it.

Jeremiah 31:13 "Then shall the virgin rejoice in the dance, And the young men and the old, together; For I will turn their mourning to joy, Will comfort them, And make them rejoice rather than sorrow"

We need to have our hearts on giving, not receiving. Our focus should be always that which is on God's heart – the lost, the broken and hurting.

Dance is a command.
To dance is to be obedient to the instruction of the Word.
Psalm 149:1,3-4 "Praise the Lord!…Let them praise His name with the dance; Let them sing praises to Him with the timbrel and harp. For the Lord takes pleasure in His people; He will beautify the humble with salvation"

Notice it didn't say, "I suggest that maybe you could possibly offer up a small token of affirmation to the Lord". NO! It said, "PRAISE THE LORD!" There was no suggestion about it at all. It was a definite exhortation. The word "Praise" in verse one is the Hebrew word 'halal'. It means to shine, to boast, to make a show, to be clamorously foolish, to rave, to celebrate. So, we can understand more fully that it doesn't mean to sit quietly with our hands folded in our laps, it means to be extravagant in our show of our love toward Him.

The Word tells us that obedience is better than sacrifice. Be obedient to the instruction of the Lord and be clamorously foolish for Him. David did. He danced with all his might before the Lord. Some scorned him, but God was honored.

Dance is war.
Did you know that when you step out in obedience that God flows through you to route the enemy? God says we are the weapon.

Isaiah 30:31-32 "For through the voice of the Lord Assyria will be beaten down, As He strikes with the rod. And in every place where the staff of punishment passes, Which the Lord lays on him, It will be with tambourines and harps; And in battles of brandishing He will fight with it"

Jeremiah 51:20 "You are my battle-ax and weapons of war: For with you I will break the nation in pieces; With you I will destroy kingdoms"

Isaiah 41:15-16 "Behold, I will make you into a new threshing sledge with sharp teeth; You shall thresh the mountains and beat them small, And make the hills like chaff. You shall winnow them, the wind shall carry them away, And the whirlwind shall scatter them; You shall rejoice in the Lord, And glory in the Holy One of Israel"

God is our Lord Sabbaoth – the Lord of Hosts. This means He is the Lord of a mass of people organized for war (an army). Consider Psalm 47:5…"God has gone up (gets stirred up) with a shout, The Lord with the sound of a trumpet".  Our high praise stirs up God and when we are praising Him, He is right there in our midst. He inhabits our praises. Isaiah 42:13 goes on to say, "The Lord shall go forth like a mighty man; He shall stir up His zeal like a man of war. He shall cry out, yes, shout aloud; He shall prevail against His enemies."  Doesn't that get you excited? Our God is passionate. That is why He said he prefers that we be either hot or cold…lukewarm is not an option unless you want to be vomited out of God's mouth (Revelation 3:16).

Look at this simple verse: Hosea 10:11 "Judah shall plow".  Sounds like farming instructions, doesn't it? Well let's look at each piece of this 3 word verse.

Judah = praise
shall = is determined to; must; will
plow = to make ready for seed time; to scratch or engrave with tools or instruments to make a permanent imprint

So, what can we gather from those 3 little words? That our praise makes a permanent imprint in the spiritual realm and digs up the hard-heartedness (fallow ground) of those watching in order to prepare it to receive the seed of God's word. Quite a responsibility, isn't it? Brings the notion of doing all things decently and in order – with purity and holiness – to a whole new level, huh?

Dance is communication.
It is a conversation between the dancer and God. We're communicating a message of love to our Lord. His Holy Spirit intercedes through us to Him…that is why it is so important that we consider…

  • why are we doing a specific song…what is the relevancy? Is it culturally, spiritually or eternally relevant?
  • What story do the lyrics paint? Did we choose something that is pointing to Jesus or to ourselves?
  • What do our movements communicate? Are we being suggestive with our bodies or are we honoring God?
  • What is my part's message?
  • What does my heart want to communicate to the Lord? Am I keeping my eyes on Him, or am I distracted by the thoughts and cares of the day?
  • Why does the music move or inspire me? Would it be as effective if there were no lyrics?
  • Can you get behind the leader's vision and heart for this presentation?
  • Does it go with the vision of the house?

Be open and willing to receive correction, if needed. If a leader comes up to you and tells you to adjust something – even if it is not the dance leader – keep your heart right. It is not about YOU. I had just such an occasion happen to me. I was preparing for a night of worship where I knew I would be ministering before the congregation. I was dressed in many layers of clothing for modesty's sake. However, one of my elders came up to me and asked me to change my top. Now, I had on a bodysuit, proper undergarments and an overlay. Yet, I went straight to the costume closet and did as she asked. When the service started, God utilized me to bring about His purposes during a time of ministry. I was dancing with flags over the people as the word of the Lord came forth about releasing His healing. What do you think would have happened if I had chosen differently? What if I said in my heart, "What does she know? I am the dance leader and I am appropriately dressed?"  I am sure God would still have moved upon the people, but I would not have been blessed to be a part of it.

Later on, this same elder told me why she had me change…that even though I had on many layers, those layers were all white and – under the lights – they were somewhat transparent. I would have been embarrassed if I had not chosen to change. Keep you heart right! Your leaders and elders have nothing but the very best in their heart for you. Give them the benefit of the doubt.

Dance is intercession.
Did you know that you bring others before the throne of God in your heart, by the Spirit? Standing in the gap for others is powerful stuff. When you purpose in your heart to pray and intercede for others, you are bringing them before God. You can do this through dance and movement, too! Have you ever had someone come up to you after a presentation and say, "I felt God so strongly when you were dancing"…"I could feel the love of God coming forth from you"?  If you have had someone come up to you after a presentation, it wasn't YOU that ministered to them…it was God through you. What an honor to be a vessel for the Lord simply because you were willing and yielded. You may never know how many people you have touched for Him until you get to eternity.

One of the Hebrew words for dance is 'chuwl' or 'chiyl'. It is POWERFUL. Let's look at how Strong's Concordance translates it's meaning:

chuwl {khool}; bear, make to bring forth, make to calve, dance, drive away, fall grievously with pain…

Or chiyl {kheel}; a primitive root; properly, to twist or whirl (in a circular or spiral manner), i.e. (specifically) to dance, to writhe in pain (especially of parturition) or fear; figuratively, to wait, to pervert — bear, (make to) bring forth, (make to) calve, dance, drive away, fall grievously (with pain), fear, form, great, grieve, (be) grievous, hope, look, make, be in pain, be much (sore) pained, rest, shake, shapen, (be) sorrow(-ful), stay, tarry, travail (with pain), tremble, trust, wait carefully (patiently), be wounded.

I like that it says to 'pervert'. You may think I am nuts, be it means to pervert (turn away from the course) the plans of the enemy! You can see very plainly how dance can be an intercession, a bringing forth, a birthing if you will, of God's heart/intent/plan for yourself and others.

As we wrap up this teaching, let me leave you with some final thoughts. Our job, our privilege, is to be a servant in the house of the Lord. We are to serve God and serve people. We are to go out into the highways and byways and COMPEL them to come into…where? The church building? No, to come into the saving knowledge of Christ. The church building is just a safe place for them to grow and be discipled. Let's not get religious and think it's all about adding new members to our fellowship. We don't go to church, we ARE the church!

God admonishes us in Hebrews 13:3 "Remember the prisoners as if chained with them, those who are mistreated; since you yourselves are in the body also. Do we think of those who are still in bondage? We have been set free, but Jesus said the second greatest commandment was to love our neighbor as ourselves. If we do that, we will remember them as prisoners, chained to the bondages of sin and the plans of the enemy. We will remember that it is our duty and honor to give them Christ, who destroys every yoke of bondage. When we do that, how can we not be effected by God's equipping?

2 Corinthians 5:20 says "Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ's behalf, be reconciled to God".  Did you see that? God has set us in position as His ambassadors so that He can plead through us to the unsaved. Makes me want to humbly get on my face before the Lord…I am truly honored to be in His service and I don't plan on wasting my life. How about you?

Be admonished: Philippians 2:3-4 "Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others".
 

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