“Sanctify” means “separate yourself.” Get rid of the things that are extra, added weight. Get rid of the things that are not the image of Christ. Let go of attitudes that don’t fit Kingdom thinking. Elders, deacons, bishops and presbyters won’t be able to help you on this one because none of us have been this way before. (Cf. Josh 10:14 and there was no day like that before it or after it.) I heard a speaker say, “The Lord of life leaves enough mystery to be intrusive, disruptive and surprising in order that He might shatter our tendencies to predictability; and yes even boredom. Saints die of many things but to die of boredom is an insult to the God of an ever-expanding glory.” Though some of us desperately long for the routine of our lives to be radically changed, long for the condition of our nation to be totally changed, we are disturbed and consequently resistant when confronted with the acts of God’s power which are required to change them. (According to Jesus, Lazarus had to be in the tomb for four days for the purposes of God before he could be resurrected. Jn.11:4-7) In order for God to radically change the present state of our lives, we must allow Him to forcefully break in upon us. (Nahum 1:3) “…the Lord hath His way in the whirlwind”. That means that we will not escape the Whirlwind.
Kathy—How do we know if a dream is symbolic? Sometimes, it is definitely obvious right up front that a dream is not literal, like if your cat is driving your car. (And no matter how smart your cat is, cats can’t get a driver’s license!) On a side note, symbols may be personal because of how they fit in your experiences and frame of reference. Case in point, if I dreamed a cat was driving my car, that would be a clear telegram for me that I am being soul-led rather than Spirit-led because a strong mindset is driving my thinking and behavior. I would know that because in my symbols discoveries through the years, cats represent strong mindsets, preset opinions and intense attitudes. However, a cat can represent something completely different to other people, like cats may represent companionship or home security because they kill mice, etc. So symbolism begs the question: ‘How do you narrow down what a symbol means in a dream?’ The answer is that you develop an ear to hear a Holy Spirit “click” that turns the light on in your understanding and confirms the correct thinking.
Melissa — If dreaming has not been an exciting concept for a while due to experience and our current state, just know your Father would have you to start dreaming again. Dreaming in the middle of this moment may sound counterproductive and silly, but it may be exactly what you need to move forward. What does dreaming look like? I honestly don’t know. I am working on that myself. I do believe it has something to do with looking ahead and letting passion, desire and creativity fill in the blanks. I also believe a dream crosses over into the realm of idealism when it becomes a fixed picture with no moving parts. Dreams are fluid and allow the Great Inspirer to add the elements needed for them to become real life. Maybe allow yourself to open up to the possibility of wide-eyed dreaming and see what might happen. We can’t allow victimhood to stifle us out of living with all that is possible in the God with Whom nothing is impossible (Matt.19:26;Lk.1:37;Phil.4:13). “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” (Psalm 119:105) “The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord: and he delighteth in his way.” (Psalm 37:23) “Thou will show me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.” (Psalm 16:11) (5 of 5)
As the people of God assemble today may the heavy garments of burdens and opposition fall away like the fall leaves fall away from the trees. May the Lord’s people be refreshed in His presence and the fellowship of the saints and move forward into the new year rested with the strength that only Jehovah can give. Matt.11:28-30,TPT—“Are you weary, carrying a heavy burden? Come to me. I will refresh your life, for I am your oasis. 29 Simply join your life with mine. Learn my ways and you’ll discover that I’m gentle, humble, easy to please. You will find refreshment and rest in me. 30 For all that I require of you will be pleasant and easy to bear.”
May the Lord grant that seasons of weariness and relentless opposition over your life break and dissipate like the morning mist and may the breaking and dissipation continue all through the year. “But no weapon that is formed against you shall prosper, and every tongue that shall rise against you in judgment you shall show to be in the wrong. This [peace, righteousness, security, TRIUMPH OVER OPPOSITION] is the heritage of the servants of the Lord [those in whom the ideal Servant of the Lord is reproduced]; this is the righteousness or the vindication which they obtain from Me [this is that which I impart to them as their justification], says the Lord.” (Isa.54:17, Amp)
Kathy—Literal means “real with no hidden meanings and nothing to be de-coded”. Symbolic means “not real” and a detail represents something other than itself. If you dream there are birds all over your roof and it is symbolic, the birds aren’t really birds but they represent something else in the air or atmosphere or surroundings. Landing on your roof top or your high place would be your head and/or mind. So the message would be to guard your mind and thinking from something in the atmosphere trying to land and have presence or influence in you. A further search for possibilities of what birds could symbolize would be the next step, and then consideration of those options until a meaning clicks with you or bears witness and brings clarity to the dream. For example, when I think of birds being symbolic, my first thought is a bird can represent gossip, as in “a little bird told me.” If your co-workers or neighbors or family are really into gossip, then perhaps the dream is a heads-up to be on guard so that gossip doesn’t get into your thinking and opinions and cause you trouble. This is an illustration also of how a simple dream can be powerful equipping when we understand the information being passed on to us.
Melissa—Basically, we can miss the mark easily because all of the grooming, training, guidance, experience and cultivation it takes to fulfill the will of God in our lifetime is nowhere in the type of religious and cultural idealisms that form a picture of destiny according to our current understanding of Who God is. We have no way of knowing the intricacies God works in to establish His Kingdom on this earth through us. Our minds can’t comprehend that kind of detail. That kind of detail takes the entirety of our existence to manifest. Here’s the other thing, because Father is so intricate it is frustratingly contradictory to live in constant fear of falling off of His path. If He is that intricate, how in the world can we fall off His path that easily? An intricate God makes a wide path, and He knows our struggles with human nature. He’s not afraid so we shouldn’t be. He, of course, provides a way back, IF that’s even what is going on! You, I, we may simply be right in the middle of a transition of a lifetime, but we are listening to the ignorant voice of idealism saying, “you messed up”. But I offer this instruction from the Bible: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight.” (Proverbs 3:5-6)
Less is more. Simple is wise. This year we have entered into is a great year to allow Holy Spirit to give weight to our words to help and edify people who are desperately looking for solace and solutions. We are going to find that the simplest things the Lord inspires us to say to someone are going to be the most powerful. You are the bearer of His Spirit, of His Living Word. Those words will be of the Lord and they will impact that person or persons and then they will walk away from us carrying something they did not have before we spoke the simple truth of God’s Word and God’s heart. Prayers and declarations do not have to be complicated. Just get out in the moment what needs to get into the atmosphere. ”What I tell you in darkness, speak in the light; and what you hear, proclaim on the housetops.” (Matt.10:27)
Kathy—Coming into the new year we would be wise to make decisions based in the Word of God, the wisdom of God. If we go to God for a deposit of His peace and wisdom, we can make a choice that contradicts our feelings. That doesn’t mean you are giving up strategy and resolve, it means you’re just choosing not to stay upset while it comes. To stay upset is to choose death because your body will suffer, relationships will suffer and “emotional reactions” will become king in the house and set an atmosphere that draws more upset.
Melissa—When I wrestled with a sense of victimhood, sometime back, I had to find peace in the fact that God is right in the middle of whatever is going on right now. And as I think of that time period, it leads me to a recent conversation with two very dear friends that are in intense battles of their own. We were catching up on the latest with each other when I started telling them about a meeting I recently had with a cherished voice in my life. In my conversation with this person she told me that it was time for me to dream again, and dream big (she was talking about dreaming about the future). I shared this with my friends and I could see that it hit them like it hit me. Dreaming has not been an exciting concept for a while for any of the three of us due to experience and our current state. We began to talk about what dreaming looks like and began to realize some things. The three of us have all grown up in church and are the types who truly want to stay right in the middle of the will of God. While that is not a bad thing it can take an extreme turn that you don’t even realize until you hit moments like this. The extreme comes when you have done all you know to do to be in God’s will (albeit stumbling through it), but you hit a rough patch and all you can figure is you made one bad decision that put you in this current situation. The extreme part of it is the “witch hunt” for what you did wrong so you can call it by name, repent and hopefully get back on God’s path for your life… if it’s not too late. The extreme is based in idealism. My friends and I realized that for the most part we really don’t know what it means to “dream big” because we have been operating in “sweet little Christian girl” idealisms for our lives. These type of idealisms form a picture of destiny according to our current understanding of Who God is and how He works filtered through our family, religious culture and nation’s cultures and traditions. And yet, our Father has intentionally put in place all the intricacies He works in to establish His Kingdom on this earth through us. (Part 3 of 6)
As the people of God assemble today may they not forget their godly heritage, the Word of God they were taught, nor their prayer times around altars stained with tears of conviction and repentance; the altars where life dedications were made and where the Spirit of Almighty God gripped their hearts and their family members’ hearts and their peers’ hearts. And may they lead coming generations to those experiences that have strengthened us and filled us with His Spirit, His faith, His hope and a righteous fear of Mighty God so that we all might keep standing and keep believing through whatever the times, the world throws at us. We are overcoming by the blood of the Lamb and the word of our testimony.
Rev.2:3-5,Amp–“…you have left your first love [you have lost the depth of love that you first had for Me]. 5 So remember the heights from which you have fallen, and repent [change your inner self—your old way of thinking, your sinful behavior—seek God’s will] and do the works you did at first [when you first knew Me]; otherwise, I will visit you and remove your lampstand (the church, its impact) from its place—unless you repent.”
In front of the church where my father pastored for 22 years, on Jensen Drive in North Houston, there was a lighted cross high up on a pole. The vertical portion read “JESUS”, the left arm read “SAVES” and the right arm read “HEALS”. When my father got wondrously saved in the downtown Houston area he was taught the Word of God by Mother Hudson, Dad Richey, Raymond T. Richey, Brother Gerhardt, Harry Hodge and several other men and women of God he spoke to me of over the years. The message he was taught was always JESUS and that same JESUS HEALS AND SAVES. I heard him preach that message hundreds of times and know of many people it impacted and lives that were changed. It still impacts me and my preaching. I am the 13th preacher to come out from under my father’s ministry at Jensen Drive Assembly of God. I have preached that message hundreds of times over the last 53 years and I cannot help but encourage you with it again, JESUS SAVES AND JESUS HEALS!
Kathy—What “used to be” in past years is not the witness that will impact a community or a region for the Kingdom in the here and now. I AM is being misrepresented if He is not present tense and awesome right here in 2022. If we refuse to allow pride or fear to keep us from fresh and timely obedience, sons of God will be redefined and repositioned as needed in 2022 and we will flow into a momentum that causes the good plans of God to manifest. The groaning (Rom.8:19) communities and regions will reel with the supernatural results and exponential harvest that He has planned.
Melissa—I had an experience that might not be a bad idea to apply all through 2022. During a time of ministry at a meeting awhile back a revered Prophet told me, “Read Jeremiah 33:3 everyday and watch what happens.” It’s certainly not an unfamiliar passage, but perhaps one that is easily forgotten in the midst of all the hustle, bustle and chaos. So, here you go (in 3 versions for impact):
“Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and show thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.” Jer. 33:3 KJV
“Call to Me and I will answer you, and tell you [and even show you] great and mighty things, [things which have been confined and hidden], which you do not know and understand and cannot distinguish.” Jer. 33:3 AMP
“Call to me and I will answer you. I’ll tell you marvelous and wondrous things that you could never figure out on your own.” Jer. 33:3 MSG.
May the Lord prosper you in the path of life that He has ordained for you in 2022. May He show you the life He has placed in that path for you and may you impart life in that ordained path. And when you have gone down that path this year, there will be many who will never be the same because you are a bearer of His life which is redemptive. Joy to you all year. “You will show me the path of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy, at Your right hand there are pleasures forevermore.” (Ps.16:11, Amp)
Kathy—Our Battles this last year may have been physical or financial or attacks from people or harassment in circumstances or a siege of constant pressure. Whatever the conflict, I think battle-weariness sets in at the point there seems to be no let up, no end. Changelessness is exhausting. It can make us too tired to muster hope, but like David, that’s the time to talk to God openly. In Psalm 55, David told the Lord that he just wanted some peace and quiet, a walk in the country and a cabin in the woods. He told Him his heart was desperate for change (MSG). When we come to God in exhausted desperateness, He does not meet us there as a stonewall of resistance. That place of meeting with Him is a threshold, a starting place, a second wind. Just breathe.
Melissa — What a great, great year to be alive! We GET to not only see the shift, we get to BE the shift. Yes, the glory of God is going to be not only seen, but known. And it’s not because things just got that bad, it’s because things and people (this includes you) are now in place for undeniable God elements. Get ready.
As the people of God assemble today, may they be infused with Holy Spirit power to be fruitful all the year ahead. May vision and empowerment come to each one. I pray that the fruit our Lord gives you and your church this year will be like the net the disciples had to call for help to draw in. May there be such a bounty that the net would be near bursting with the catch. May your net be built strong and hold. “So Simon Peter went aboard and hauled the net to land, full of large fish, 153 of them; and [though] there were so many of them, the net was not torn.” (Jn.21:11, Amp)
Kathy—If you are battle-weary, I believe the new year will bring welcomed changes. I’m not implying battles will stop suddenly and everybody goes on vacation. I’m saying many long-term battles will end because you finally win. “Unrelenting disappointment leaves you heartsick, but a sudden good break can turn life around” (MSG, Prov. 13:12). I expect some sudden good breaks in the year to come.
Melissa—A reminder for 2022: don’t forget that a lot of what you are dealing with personally, whether it be physically or emotionally, may be the war in the atmosphere. We have the authority to say “peace” because we are His agents. When our Lord told the storm to “be still” the atmosphere listened. We carry that same authority and it is our job to change the atmosphere during our lifetime. So, the next time you are dealing with something personally let your first reaction be to remember there is so much more going on around you than your eyes can see. Ask, “where is this coming from and how do I need to deal with it?” You may simply need to say, “Peace, be still.”
We must end this year well in order to go into the new year well so that we can end the coming year victoriously. We must determine to get rid of the old and get hold of the new. It may cost us money, time, effort and purposefully applied energy to finish a season. We may actually have to sit down, think and make a plan. Finishing a season is very important because it disheartens the enemy. “The wall was finished on the twenty-fifth day of Elul. It had taken fifty-two days. When all our enemies heard the news and all the surrounding nations saw it, OUR ENEMIES TOTALLY LOST THEIR NERVE. THEY KNEW THAT GOD WAS BEHIND THIS WORK.” (Neh.6:15-16, Msg) Maybe if we finish something, we won’t have so many enemies breathing down our neck all year.
Kathy — Communication is complete when that information or meaning is received and understood. The Holy Spirit has unlimited ways to communicate with us to be God-aware because there’s communication incoming. For example: Literal means “real with no hidden meanings and nothing to be de-coded”. What you see is what you get. For example, if you dream birds are covering your house and the dream is a literal message, you need to find ways to keep birds off your roof before you have a mess. The dream would be a heads-up for your benefit in future. Symbolic means not real and a detail represents something other than itself. In that case, the birds aren’t really birds but they represent something else in the air or atmosphere or surroundings. Landing on your roof top or your high place would be your head and/or mind. So the message would be to guard your mind and thinking from something in the atmosphere trying to land and have presence or influence in you.
Melissa — Yes, it has come to this: Be vigilant – keenly watchful to detect danger; ever awake and alert; sleeplessly watchful. Let me go ahead and say, this is not a “you deserve a spanking for allowing the world to go down the toilet” post. Rather this post is aimed at being an alarm clock to wake up God’s sleeping giants to war! Is that you? Well, you’re the one reading this right now, and that is NO COINCIDENCE! So, here’s your wake up call, you beautiful heavenly-Change-Agent, you! What is a heavenly Change-Agent? It’s one who makes a difference wherever they are because they carry Heaven in them. When I say Heaven, I mean one who carries the original intent of God wherever they go. What is God’s original intent? Heaven on earth, a Kingdom without end (Luke 1:31-33). The difference between our Change-Agents and the ones making the news right now is that we cause life, healing, peace, hope, restoration—not death and destruction!
This is the day the Lord has made (Ps.118:24) so…. I will rejoice and be glad and grow strong in spirit and be filled with wisdom in it. Jesus was born with purpose and so are we. From the beginning, He not only grew physically but in His spirit and in wisdom for what was to come. One of our major goals for our children in 2022 should be to see them filled with the Spirit and to train them in godly wisdom. “And the Child grew and became strong in spirit, filled with wisdom; and the grace (favor and spiritual blessing) of God was upon Him.” (Lk.2:40, Amp)