A Thanksgiving to Remember

A garland of grace and a crown of beauty. Proverbs 4:9

Last night I felt the spirit of God raise up in me with eager expectancy just like election night! God began just speaking to me about making much of this Thanksgiving!! Today and going forward, let’s keep our eyes on Him and Let’s offer thanksgiving to God because He reigns in this nation!

Photo by Hannah Busing

Psalm 150:6 Let everything that breathes sing praises to the Lord! Praise the Lord!

I believe with fellow believers that today as we fellowship we offer a sacrifice of praise with one heart and one voice as the scriptures say to do that “Jesus is still Lord in this country, that God is with us through His covenant, and we will see the goodness of God in the land of the living”!!

2 Chronicles 20:15-21… The Lord says do not be afraid. Do not be discouraged by what you see for the battle is not yours, but it is Gods!

March out against them but you will not even need to fight. Take your positions and stand firm and watch the Lord’s victory! He is with you… and King Jehoshaphat appointed singers to walk ahead of the army PRAISING God for His holy splendor, offering “Give thanks to the Lord; His faithful love endures forever!”

(Why?!? because our praise withGod’s spoken word is our greatest weapon!!)

AND at the very moment they began to sing and give praise, the hand of God intervened and God fought and won the war for His people!

We dont fight with physical weapons, we fight with spiritual weapons to keep standing in the very positions God has given us!

Out of nowhere this song rose up in my spirit:“🎶 This land is your land, this land is my land. From the California, to the New York Island. From the Redwood Forest, to the Gulf stream waters. This land was made for you and me!” Amen!

Let’s not forget this land was given to us by God’s own hand and victory hundreds of years ago. This land belongs to God’s people based on the foundation of unity and freedom!

The first Thanksgiving was celebrated in 1621 to give thanks to God for helping the Pilgrims of Plymouth Colony who survived the previous cold winter and enjoying a bountiful harvest feast with the Wampanoag people!

The actual holiday of Thanksgiving didnt begin until 1863 after President Abraham Lincoln said: “I do, therefore, invite my fellow-citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next as a Dayof THANKSGIVING AND PRAISE to our beneficent FATHER who dwelleth in the heavens.”

This declaration was given in the darkest of years among a devastating national division: the United States Civil War from a motion to unite the country after just 1 daring woman, Sarah Hale, followed the leading of the Lord who had suggested this union festival year after year for 17 years to many elected officials ! Wow! It only took one man, who had the heart of the Father, for this letter to “cross his desk” and put action to it!

Here is more from Abraham Lincoln’s speech:

“The year that is drawing towards its close, has been filled with the blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies. To these bounties, which are so constantly enjoyed that WE ARE PRONE TO FORGET THE SOURCE from which they come, others have been added, which are of so extraordinary a nature, that they cannot fail to penetrate and soften even the heart which is habitually insensible to the EVER-WATCHFUL PROVIDENCE OF ALMIGHTY GOD.

In the midst of a civil war of UNEQUALLED MAGNITUDE and severity, which has sometimes seemed to foreign States to invite and to provoke their aggression, PEACE HAS BEEN PRESERVED with all nations……and the country, rejoicing in the consciousness of AUGMENTED STRENGTH AND VIGOR, is permitted to expect continuance of years WITH LARGE INCREASE OF FREEDOM!

NO HAN COUNCIL HAS DEVISED, NOR HATH ANY MORTAL HAND WORKED OUT THESE GREAT THINGS.

They are the gracious gifts of the Most High God, who, while dealing with us in anger for our sins, hath nevertheless remembered mercy.

It has seemed to me fit and proper that they should be SOLEMNLY, REVERENTLY, and GRATEFULLY acknowledged as with ONE HEART and ONE VOICE by the whole American People….

And I recommend to them that while OFFERING up the ascriptions justly due to Him for such singular deliverances and blessings, they do also, with humble penitence for our national perverseness and disobedience, commend to His tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably engaged, and FERVENTLY IMPLORE the INTERPOSITION of the Almighty Hand to HEAL the wounds of the nation and to RESTORE it as soon as may be consistent with the DIVINE PURPOSES to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquillity and Union…”

Photo by Scott Umstattd

Wow! What is the Holy Spirit tugging on your heart today? God is with us and anyone who remains in continuous fellowship with Him knows He is working on a massive table turning of darkness and corruption to light and justice! This will be a Thanksgiving to remember for greater things than most can even imagine!

Psalm 118: 14-15 The lord is my strength and my song, He has given me victory. Songs of joy and victory are sung in the camp of the godly!

Photo by Todd Trapani

Happy Thanksgiving, Sara

Who Even Needs a Church?

A garland of grace and a crown of beauty. Proverbs 4:9

Spiritual Renewal starts with physical honor.

Yesterday was Hinley’s Anniversary of being dedicated to the Lord. I love this picture so much! We were in a different church then, but God was still very present! A church is not a religion, it is a place of His Glory (presence, power, and goodness). Since that day, we got to witness our daughter choose to get baptized in the local church God called us to not long after this precious picture was taken.

I see and hear many people- christians- who want to see the church—the building—fall and waste away to nothing. “Church is not essential” “Jesus came to destroy the church building” “Church doesn’t do anything for me or anybody” “We don’t need church” “God never focused on the church building.”

My heart literally aches over hearing the Church—people— say these things. I cant even begin to fathom how much it grieves God. Jesus for that matter…. He spent his 33 years of life building the Church—people and buildings. He gave His life for building His new church and that includes physical temples/ buildings to hold His church to come together as 1 local body for specific purposes.

“No he didn’t?” Yes, friend, He did. Scripture from the oldest, Genesis, to the newest, Revelation.

“Jesus came to tear the curtain of the church, Sara, He despised Pharisees and religion”. Yes and no. Jesus tore the curtain of sin that seperated man from God. That curtain was in a church full of churchy people-pharisees. Jesus loved everybody and that included the pharisees, He died for them to have a transformed heart and in the mean time Jesus brought correction and revelation for the pre-existing church that was infected with wrong living. The church had become just a building instead of an honored place for relationship with the Father. Jesus built a new church that could house jews and gentiles—christians!

Are there churches that resemble the old church with the same spirit their pharisees taught from- yes. Its horrible. But that doesnt mean local churches as a whole is hopeless and useless?? The church is THE POWER in this world to flood darkness with light. To cultivate a kingdom of Heaven on earth.

So why on earth do we think that everything else in the world that God created gets a physical place of honor except for His church? Do we say “forget church, too many people screwed it up?” So did you say the same thing for the bank? Thats essential.. what about the grocery store or the department store? What about your place of business? Your schools? Better yet…. what about your home?

I know this is coming off “ouch”, but guys we need a good “love slap out of it”! Whose own home is perfect?? Whose own home has zero strife, zero judgement, zero anger, zero issues where we as people have messed up? Nobody’s! So then are we going to say that a houses aren’t essential for our families? No!

Jesus was hosting church one day where whole families could come and worship and learn God’s word together. Jesus said, “let the children come to me. Do not stop them!” And He placed his hands on their heads and blessed them in Matthew 19.

Can we look at just teeny , tiny amount of scripture for a few minutes? When Jesus was a boy and traveled with his parents to Jerusalem, he was found 3 days later in The Temple. Jesus said, “..didn’t you know that I must be in my Father’s house?

And then later Jesus told Peter, “Now I say to you that you are Peter (which means rock) and upon this rock I will build my church, and all the powers of hell will not conquer it” in Matthew 16. Peter was the first member of the church Jesus would build. Granted, that doesn’t mean only a building, but a designated place for anyone to come and find the transforming presence of God.

Then after Peter (the chosen first member of God’s church) denied Christ and Christ rose from the dead, Jesus found him and gave assignments to Peter for His Church: “feed my lambs…take care of my sheep”. Peter and the disciples did just that. So did Paul and other assigned believers. How? Did they go into churches saying, leave the church. This is not essential to God at all. Go home and worship God by yourself? No!

We see from Acts to Revelation that through The Church -people and designated places for congregations- were created for great purposes! Scriptures give us references of how when the church came together in a place there was greater power available! Acts 12:5 while Peter was in prison, the church prayed very earnestly for him…God broke Peter out of prison.

God instructed Paul and the other apostles to help the churches God was building to get on track to be The Churches positioned across the world. God gave instructions for how His new churches could flourish across the earth and explaining that “the church is one body with many parts each positioned for God’s use” and how “Jesus is the head of the church body, and the church is made full and complete”. God warned us not to say “I dont need you” to the different parts of the body.

All of you together are Christ’s body and each of you is a part of it. Here are SOME of the parts God has appointed for the church, apostles, prophets, teachers… one who prophesies, strengthens, encourages, and comforts THAT ENTIRE CHURCH. “Now these are the gifts Christ gave to the church: apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers. Their responsibility is to EQUIP God’s people to do His work and BUILD up the church, the body of Christ. This will continue until we all come to such unity in our faith and knowledge of God’s Son that we will be mature in the Lord, measuring up to the full and complete standard of Christ. Then we will no longer be immature like children. We wont be tossed and blown about every wind of new teaching. We will not be influenced when people try to trick us with lies so clever they sound like the truth. Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of His body the church. He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love.”

From God’s word we know that every believer is called to be actively involved in their local church’s growth. So if there is no local church, how are people strengthened, encouraged, grounded, healthy, and remaining in love? Alot of us think we walk in love, but we need to go back and read what love is and what love is not and allow ourselves to be refined by the Word of the church in 1 Corinthians.

Yes, we each have a ministry as an individual church outside of the 4 walls of a building, but we have a ministry together as a church inside of a designated building! I can be the hands of God by myself in great ways- sure, but i can join the hands of God in a congregation and accomplish FAR MORE than I could ever dream to do alone unlike many other countries. Together, from a local church we get to bring the kingdom of Heaven out onto the streets He leads us to and we get to serve the families God joined us to in the local church as our own families are served and flourishing here too.

God gave instructions for a healthy church —people and a building/ temple to house and honor His Spirit, to flourish His people. Jesus formed His first church—people and physical places. A church is a place of worship and fellowship with believers, but in God’s word He says “ I will give you pastors after my own heart to lead who will guide you with knowledge and understanding…my wayward children come back to me and I will heal your wayward hearts”. -Jeremiah 3

In Malachi 2 &3, God said “the words of a priest’s lips should preserve knowledge of God and people should go to him for instruction, for the priest is the messenger of the Lord of Heaven’s armies”. The priests became cultured instead of culturing the world fo God’s word… but God prophesied “Look, I am sending my messenger (THE HIGH PRIEST FOREVER—Jesus Christ).. the Lord you are seeking will suddenly come to His Temple…He will purify the church so that they may once again offer acceptable sacrifices to the Lord.”

God said “the people are saying, the time has not come to rebuild the house of the Lord..why are my people living in luxurious houses while MY HOUSE lies in ruins? Look a what is happening to you. You have planted much but harvest little…Look at whats happening to you. Now go up to the hills bring down timber and REBUILD MY HOUSE…My house lies in ruins while all of you are busy buikdong your own.. I will fill this place (His temple- physical/place and spiritual/ people) with glory. The future glory of This Temple will be greater than it’s past glory. In This Place, I will bring peace, for I the Lord of Heaven’s armies has spoken.”

In Zechariah, God says “ Be strong and finish the task! Ever since the laying of the foundation of the Temple of the Lord of Heaven’s Armies you have heard what the prophets have been saying about completing the building… Now I am planting seeds of peace and prosperity among you. The grapevines will be heavy with fruit…I will make you a SYMBOL and a SOURCE of blessing. So don’t be afraid. Be strong, and get on with rebuilding The Temple!”

So why in the world do we buy the righteous anger of “church is not essential!” To me, that says “it’s not essential to YOU” because YOU have allowed yourself to be hurt by the people in the church- whether it was a disagreement over what you thought God meant in His word or you may have been in a church that was more like a social club rather than a house of God. I get it and those situations are hard, but church is essential!

It’s essential to me. It’s essential to Jesus. It’s essential to God. It’s essential for the Holy Spirit. It’s essential for my community! Where else will we have a place to come together to 1)pray with one heart, one mind, one voice in unity over God’s word… 2) a place where there should be accountability to bring what God said in His word over any other word/ idea that exalts itself over His 3) a place where I can breathe away from the stress of home and work and receive the needed On Time Word for me specifically which is “food” for me to grow healthy and stay on the path.

Church is not a social visit, but in this place of His Spirit I am blessed with fellowship that I can’t get anywhere else. Its not a 2 hour minute pow wow where I feel so included, but it is a smile, a simple acknowledgement, and most importantly its a deeper love that honestly isnt usually “outwardly spoken with words per say, but a sense in my spirit”. Often times I sit alone or with my husband when he gets to be there because I am there for His word above anything else, but He gives me more than what I come for.

One scripture that God repeatedly speaks to me is “And since we have a great High Priest who rules over God’s house, let us go right into the presence of God (can be the altar of heart but also is a physical altar of honor in a building) with sincere hearts fully trusting him…Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep his promise. Let us think of ways to encourage one another to acts of love and good works. And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near. Just think how much worse the punishment will be for those who have trampled on the Son of God (Includes His church- house and heart) and have treated the blood of the covenant, which made us holy, as if it were common and unholy, and have insulted and disdained (considered unworthy of one’s consideration) the Holy Spirit who brings God’s mercy to us.” -Hebrews 10

All this to say, God loves His church, whether it’s people who worship from home or those who come together in a public place for even greater assignments! Church is essential and we cannot afford to tear down something that God sent Paul and the other apostles out into the world to build in the foundation if Christ himself. Guard your hearts and read the word with open ears to hear the loving correction and conviction to not be used as a tool to destroy what God is using in the earth. Be the church that is the church 24/7 in every area of your life’s ministry.

All my love, Sara

A Battle of Integrity and Freedom

A garland of grace and a crown of beauty. Proverbs 4:9

This year has been a year of shaking, we had the anointed and on-time song of “The Blessing” come out, then not soon after the prophetic song of “Rattle”.

Tonight, I found peace in one of my favorite chapters in the Bible that ties in both of these God given songs for us in this time. Ezekiel 37: A Valley of Dry Bones: A Renewed People

The Lord took hold of me, and I was carried away by the Spirit of the Lord to a valley filled with bones. He led me all around among the bones that covered the valley floor. They were scattered everywhere across the ground and were completely dried out. (This can be symbolic of the hearts of our nation, divided, tired, hopeless, dried up…)

Then he asked me, “Son of man, can these bones become living people again?”

“O Sovereign Lord,” I replied, “you alone know the answer to that.”

Then he said to me, “SPEAK a prophetic message to these bones (this nation) and say, ‘Dry bones, LISTEN TO THE WORD OF THE LORD! For this is what the Sovereign Lord says,

-Look! I am going to put breath (My Spirit) into you and make you live again!

-I will put flesh and muscles on you and cover you with skin!

-I will put breath into you, and you will come to life!

-THEN, you will know that I am the Lord!’”

So I spoke this message, just as he told me. Suddenly as I spoke, there was a RATTLING noise all across the valley. The bones of each body came together and attached themselves as complete skeletons (this rattling may look unsettling and completely opposite of what we were used to).

Then as I watched, the muscles and flesh formed over the bones. Then skin formed to cover their bodies, but they still had no breath in them.

Then God said to me, “Speak a prophetic message to the winds, son of man (that is us). Speak a prophetic message and say, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Come, O breath, from the four winds! (Holy Spirit) Breathe into these dead bodies so they may live again.’”

So I spoke the message as God commanded me, and BREATH came into their bodies. They all came to life and stood up on their feet—a great army.

Then God said to me, “Son of man, these bones represent the people of [this nation]. They are saying, ‘We have become old, dry bones—all hope is gone. Our nation is finished.’ (Does this sound familiar among many people, even christians, today?)

Photo by Marcos Oliveira

Therefore, PROPHESY to [this nation] and say, ‘THIS IS WHAT THE SOVEREIGN LORD SAYS: O my people, I will open your graves of exile (division) and cause you to RISE AGAIN. Then I will bring you back to the land of [my glory].

When this happens, O my people, YOU WIlL KNOW THAT I AM THE LORD.I will put my Spirit in you, and you will live again and return home to your own land [the purpose of United States of America].

Then you will know that I, the Lord, have spoken, and I have done what I said. Yes, THE LORD HAS SPOKEN!’”

Again a message came to me from the Lord: “Son of man, take a piece of wood and carve on it these words: ‘This represents Judah and its allied tribes.’ (Democrats and affiliates)

Then take another piece and carve these words on it: ‘This represents Ephraim and the northern tribes of Israel.’ (Republicans and affiliates)

Now hold them together in your hand as if they were ONE piece of wood.

Photo by Matthew Henry

When your people ask you what your actions mean,say to them, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: I will take [this side] and join them to [that side];

I will make them ONE piece of wood in MY HAND.’

“Then hold out the pieces of wood you have inscribed, so the people can see them.And give them this message from the Sovereign Lord: I will gather [my people] from among the [divisions].

I will bring them [together in unity] from the places where they have been scattered.I WILL UNIFY them into ONE NATION.

One king [Jesus] will rule them all; NO LONGER will they be DIVIDED into two nations or into two kingdoms (peace and unity).

They will never again pollute themselves with their IDOLS and VILE IMAGES and REBELLION, for I will SAVE THEM from their sinful apostasy. I will cleanse them.

Then they will truly be MY PEOPLE, and I will be THEIR GOD.

“My servant WILL BE THEIR LEADER (someone anointed, not one who is perfect) and they will have only one shepherd. They will obey my regulations and be careful to keep my decrees.

THEY WILL LIVE IN THE LAND I have given their ancestors. They and their children and their grandchildren after them will live there forever, generation after generation…

And I will make a COVENANT OF PEACE with them, an EVERLASTING COVENANT.

I will give them their land, I will increase their numbers, and I will put my Temple among them forever.

I will make my home among them (what a picture!! Full of His presence, power, love, and goodness). I will be their God, and they will be my people.

And when my Temple (Spirit) is among them forever, THE NATIONS WILL KNOW that I am the Lord, who makes you holy.”

What joy ahead! Lets keep our eyes on Him and what He is saying! If we have been spending time with Him, we can see how He has been preparing us for this time!

All God needs us to do is stand, stand on His plans for His kingdom to reign on earth! This is by His power coming from our lips and being executed through the mighty name of Jesus!

This is God’s battlefield, and just like in 2 Chronicles 20 with King Jehoshaphat!

Jehoshaphat prayed, ‘ Oh Lord, God of our ancestors, you alone are the God who is in Heaven. You are ruler of ALL the kingdoms of the earth. You are powerful and mighty; no one can stand against you!

O our God, did you not [appoint this nation as one founded on the word of God to our ancestors]. Your people settled here and built this [nation] to honor your name.

They said, ‘Whenever we are faced with any calamity such as war, plague, or famine, we can come STAND IN YOUR PRESENCE before this [nation] where your name is honored. We can cry out to you to save us, and you will hear us and rescue us.’

….Listen, this is what the Lord says: “Do not be afraid. Don’t be discouraged by this mighty army, for the battle is not yours, but God’s.

Tomorrow, march out against them…but you will not even need to fight. TAKE YOUR POSITIONS; then STAND STILL AND WATCH THE LORD’S VICTORY. HE IS WITH YOU!”

Photo by Joshua Earl

….Jehoshaphat said, “Believe in the Lord your God, and you will be able to stand firm. Believe in His prophets, and you will succeed!”

And do you remember what happened? Those who were not in covenant with God fell into their own graves, and not a single one escaped.

So keep standing on the word of God! His word carries His faith! Keep praying and keep praising God! Watch in peace as the LIGHT of God’s Glory illuminates the dark and exposes the lies that have defiled our nation.

Photo by Paul Weaver

This is not a battle for a person. This is a battle of integrity and freedom.

Prayers, Sara

A Little Persecution

A garland of grace and a crown of beauty. Proverbs 4:9

Over the last several months, the Lord has spoken to me “I need you to be ready for persecution, my church can no longer stay comfortable and complacent in this country. I have said in my word that my church will be persecuted”.

Photo by Alexander Michl

And I probably said out loud “well, thats a little much, God…” and He went on to explain “persecution doesn’t always look the same way, Sara. I’m not talking about everyone gearing up to be murdered based on their devotion to me, but yes, that is certainly happening across the earth. But I placed you here, in the United States for this time, and in this last generation; and a little persecution isn’t bad.

You, my church, HAS TO know who they are, what they believe, and what power they have been given! I chose you, I have equipped you! My champions of faith from the past would love to be in your shoes right now. They are cheering you on, so come on, be ready, and step out in persecution. My church wants change and miracles in their lives and in this nation, but yet they are not daring to believe or respond in the same way that those in extreme persecution across the earth do.

Seek me above all else, put on my armor, clothe yourself in Christ, stand in my anointing. You are to cultivate my kingdom culture at all costs. That is nothing to be afraid of. I haven’t assembled my church for this battle to lose. I have made a way, I have infused my Spirit into you and I have equipped you with my power, but you, church, have to do your part. Quit playing it safe or doing what is comfortable.”

Most people who know me know that I like to push myself and even draw others out of their comfort zones, too. Why? Because there is no growth in comfort. We cannot be who He created us to be staying comfortable and cultured to the world. Since graduating high school, I have pushed myself into the uncomfortable and I’m so glad I do.

This past week one of our Pastors said “we have to know what we believe, church, and be ready for persecution!” And I thought “oh my! There that word of persecution is again!” The title of that message that night was “Stop the Dishonor”. The whole message was centered around “where there is no honor, there is no love. Honor and love are one in the same, true love cannot be absent from honor.”

We see this by example in the unconditional love of the Father honoring us with the holiness of His son Jesus through His sacrificial death and resurrection for our sins.

John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.

So what does persecution, honor, and love have to do with one another?

Persecution by definition is:

⁃ to be troubled persistently, a systematic mistreatment because of ones belief

⁃ to be pursued with hostility, harassment, or oppressive treatment

⁃ a program or campaign to EXTERMINATE, to drive away, or to SUBJUGATE people based on their beliefs

Subjugate by definition is:

⁃ to BRING UNDER complete control or subjection; to conquer; to master

⁃ to make submissive or subservient; to ENSLAVE

We know that the enemy, the god of this world and it’s culture, hates us. God’s word tells us that the enemy is far underneath our feet through our placement in Christ. We also know through God’s word that the enemy comes to steal, kill, and destroy us, but Christ came to defeat every evil work of the enemy and to bring us life even more abundantly than we can ask, think, or imagine.

Photo taken at a recent Sean Feucht revival

We have seen that the enemy’s mission and pursuit in this world it to persecute and subjugate us. His assignments are full of oppression to conquer and enslave us. He is even known as our accuser. He hates that we have been given everything that he ever wanted, but we are more than conquerors in Christ Jesus. We have our advocate in Jesus himself who pleads our case and His Holy Spirit.

John 15:9-16:1 “I have loved you even as the Father has loved me. Remain in my love. When you obey my commandments, you remain in my love, just as I obey my Father’s commandments and remain in his love.

I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow! This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you.

There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. You are my friends if you do what I command.

I no longer call you slaves, because a master doesn’t confide in his slaves. Now you are my friends, since I have told you everything the Father told me.

You didn’t choose me. I chose you. I appointed you to go and produce lasting fruit, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask for, using my name. This is my command: Love each other.

If the world hates you, remember that it hated me first.

The world would love you as one of its own if you belonged to it, but you are no longer part of the world. I chose you to come out of the world, [you may live in this world, but you are not of this world] so it hates you.

Do you remember what I told you? ‘A slave is not greater than the master.’ Since they persecuted me, naturally they will persecute you. And if they had listened to me, they would listen to you.

They will do all this to you because of me, for they have rejected the one who sent me….Anyone who hates me also hates my Father…. But I will send you THE Advocate—the Holy Spirit of truth. He will come to you from the Father and will testify all about me.

And you must also testify about me. I have told you these things so that you will not abandon your faith.”

God is calling us to not abandon our faith. Scripture tells us that we are to stand out differently than the world, even in the face of being hated by it, persecuted for our beliefs in what God has said. To be a light in the darkness. To be salt in the earth preserving His way, His culture.

If we are christians, then we are believers. If we are believers, what do we believe? Do we just believe in the person of Jesus or do we believe in the fullness of who Jesus is?

Photo by Ben White

Scripture tells us that Jesus is the very word of God from the beginning that became flesh for us. God created everything through Him in the beginning.

The Word gave LIFE to everything that was created and HIS LIFE brought light to everyone. That light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it.

So what could me getting out of my comfort zone and allowing the possibility of being persecuted look like in my life?

⁃ allowing myself to look, think, act, speak, and respond differently than the people around me.

⁃ allowing myself to be given empty, confused or even annoyed looks by my words of faith

⁃ Responding with words (God’s word) that isn’t the same as what others are saying or expecting

⁃ Losing popularity or social “likes”, “comments”, or even any interactions from friends and family.

⁃ Being called names and spoken to with hatred and dishonor from acquaintances and strangers for my belief in what THE WORD says.

1 peter 2: 9-10 “You are chosen by God, chosen for a higher calling, CHOSEN to be a HOLY people, Gods instruments to do his work and speak out for Him to tell others of the difference He made for you from nothing to something, from rejected to accepted.

But because we live in this world, we can think of being God’s instruments in a negative way because we know how people today, the world’s culture, handles instruments.. Use, Use, Use without honor or care, but scripture shows us that God cherishes and honors us, His treasured instruments.”

2 Timothy 2:20-22 “But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of earth; and some to honor, and some to dishonor.

When you keep yourself pure, you will be a special utensil for honorable use. Your life will be full of God’s glory [presence, power, and goodness], and you will be ready for the Master to use you for every good work.

Run from temptations that capture young people. Always pursue to do the right thing by being faithful, loving, and easy to get along with. Worship with people whose hearts are pure.”

What about when people say “why do you think you are holier than me”. “Oh Sara thinks she is just so holy” That’s okay! I hate when that happens, too. The enemy knows we don’t like it, but it’s just a little persecution to try to make us walk out of our place. Remember persecution is systematic in nature. We can know what he is doing and continue to stand our ground.

And if you are thinking well.. im not “holy” to the world’s eyes, i haven’t been pure or made all the right choices in my life. The good news is that’s okay too!

Why would the world get to define holy when the world is NOT holy? The world doesn’t know how to define holy… but God does because He is holy.

In the New Testament, the word for holy is “hagios” which means:

⁃ set apart

⁃ sacred

⁃ separate

⁃ worthy

That means we aren’t defined holy by our actions, we are defined as holy by someone else’s action: God’s! He sets us apart, He makes us sacred, He separates us from the world, He considers us worthy!

We read 1 Peter 2:9 that God calls us His Holy people and Deut 7: 6 also says:

“For you are a holy people, who belong to the Lord your God. Of all the people on earth, the Lord your God has chosen you to be his own special treasure.

Treasure by definition is:

⁃ wealth stored up

⁃ something of great worth or value

⁃ esteemed as rare and precious

Once we swallow and receive what that even means for us to be His, God’s treasure, we can trust and know God on a deeper level.

1 Peter 1:1-2 “I am writing to God’s chosen people who are living as foreigners [set apart- separated-different from the culture of that land]. God the Father knew you and chose you long ago, and HIS SPIRIT HAS MADE YOU HOLY; therefore you have chosen to obey Him because you have been cleansed by the blood of Jesus Christ.”

God considers us worthy! We are so worthy that He sent us His own son to die for our sins! There is no greater love or honor than that! Can we choose to stand for God and be persecuted by the world!?

Hebrews 13:11-16 “Just like in the old covenant, the high priest killed the animal sacrifices outside of the “holy place” before presenting the sin offering to God. So Jesus also became our sacrifice, He suffered and died for us OUTSIDE of the “holy gate” TO MAKE HIS PEOPLE HOLY, TO SANCTIFY them through His own blood.

So we, too, must go [where?] to Him OUTSIDE of the city [outside of the comfortable culture] and endure the insults he endured, bearing the disgrace He bore.

For this city [world] is not our permanent home; we seek the world that is to come.

Therefore, let us offer through Jesus a continual sacrifice of praise to God, proclaiming our allegiance to his name [ready for persecution].

And don’t forget to do good and to share with those in need. These are the sacrifices that please God.

1 Thes 5:23-24 “Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely, make you holy in every way; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. God will make this happen, for He who calls you is faithful.

Are you thinking, but I still just dont feel holy or precious or worthy. I have taken on the appearance of the world’s culture. Im not set apart from the world, I look just like it…

God loves us so much that He has said when we come to Him, He transforms us, He refines us.

Malachi 3:3 “He will [sift] like a refiner of silver, burning away the dross. He will purify them, refining them like gold and silver, so that they may once again offer acceptable sacrifices to the LORD.”

Romans 12:1-2 “And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him.Do not conform to the culture of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.”

Do not conform to the culture of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.

Standing with you in love, Sara

Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness

A garland of grace and a crown of beauty. Proverbs 4:9

But thank God! He has made us His captives and continues to lead us along in Christ’s triumphal procession. Now He uses us to spread the knowledge of Christ everywhere, like a sweet perfume. Our lives are a Christ-like fragrance rising up to God. But this fragrance is perceived differently by those who are being saved and by who are perishing. 2 Corinthians 2:14-15

Prayers are our powerful weapon and we know that they also attract opposition. I think of it like this, you are at a picnic and you have something to eat, the sweeter the better. What happens? Ants and flies start coming to your picnic. The Bible tells us that our offering of praise and prayer is like a sweet aroma. The enemy and his team smell (sense) it and they want to ruin the offering. They want to contend, take over what is yours and change the outcome of what is happening! 

Photo taken by Wes Hicks

Our role is simply to keep wood in the offering and God tends to the fire. Our wood is actually our words and our actions. There is something so freeing when we understand how easy God has made it for us to bring Heaven on earth. We just have to keep wood in the fire, we don’t have to get the fire started. His glory sets fire to our offering, but He needs our wood. He needs our partnership with Jesus for chains to break, walls to come down, and light to keep penetrating the darkness everywhere!

God will do this, for He is faithful to do what He says, and He has invited you into partnership with His Son, Jesus Christ, our Lord. 1 Corinthians 1:9

Therefore, let us offer through Jesus a continual sacrifice of praise to God, proclaiming our allegiance to His name. Hebrews 13:15

At the end of last year, our church received the prophetic word of being ready to contend this year.  Our Pastor shared God is calling the church to attention to contend in the season of life the world is in and will be entering into. To contend for the glory, grace, and salvation of God on the earth as it is in Heaven.

With everything that is going on in the world, riots and hatred, elections and political unrest, masks and shots regulations, and then especially the continued news of sex trafficking coming to light in such greater ways it can be overwhelming at times for me. I can literally get so nauseous and heavy with the wrapping my head around how horrible all of this is with children as little as infants! Sex trafficking hasn’t been a shock for me, the Lord actually started giving it to me as a prayer burden off and on for the last 10 years. I remember where I was driving, when the Lord first laid that and the darkness of Hollywood/ culture on my heart to pray for light to penetrate the darkness going on there and throughout the world. Honestly, I had “no reason” to pray this, “I didn’t know anything” other then little things. I remember a major tv station aired a show centered around Lucifer and then the reality of the movie Taken with Liam Neeson. I was obedient to pray for light to flood Hollywood and the music industries and I was obedient to pray for rescues in sex trafficking. I had no idea, nor could I have even imagined that these two prayers were connected hand-in-hand the way they are!

Over the last 10 years when God would lay this prayer assignment on my heart, I would fight for rescuing children in sex trafficking awake and even in my nightmares. Recently, I had another nightmare and I woke up declaring “tear the curtain down”! I continued saying it the rest of the morning. It made me think of how God tore the veil separating darkness (humans) from His light (presence) in His temple when Jesus’s work was finished on the cross and from that point forward nothing had to separate us from coming into His presence. All humanity was given the possibility for His salvation through Him tearing that veil down. He is the one who tore it!

And you are living stones that God is building into His spiritual temple. What’s more, you are His holy priests. Through the meditation of Jesus Christ, you offer spiritual sacrifices….You are a chosen people, royal and holy, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for He called you out of the darkness into His wonderful light. 1 Peter 2:5, 9

So the curtain I was commanding to be torn down in my nightmare is similar but also opposite. The veil of God separated God’s light and presence from all of humanity to PROTECT us, but this curtain HIDES evil acts of darkness from being seen from all of humanity FOR DESTRUCTION.

The difference is what’s behind the curtain, one is good, God’s glory; the other is dark and ugly. When we draw our strength from God, we can continue to be His army that is advancing toward a greater multitude of healed people ready for the rapture. God has a victorious plan and we cannot afford to abort His plans or our prayer missions because it doesn’t fit into our comfortable life’s concepts. We have the power of God to tear this disgusting curtain down and the grace to CONTEND and expose the enemy’s work through our greatest weapon: prayer.

Photo by Zulmaury Saavedra

This year we are seeing these prayers bearing fruit, this fruit is good, but it’s incredibly hard to look at. Now that we are seeing light penetrating and exposing the darkness of sex trafficking in the world’s “icons”, it’s uncomfortable, but we shouldn’t be shocked. Scriptures tell us that satan became the little god of this world when he contended with Adam for control on the earth. Adam gave it away, He didn’t contend at all. 

Maybe he got comfortable with everything, too complacent to even realize that his place was being challenged. Too often we see Eve as the reason for the fall of humanity, but in reality Adam should have stood guard and commanded the snake out of the garden as soon as it began to speak. He entertained that the snake wasn’t “that bad” and he entertained what the snake was saying. 

We can feel helpless when we want to physically go save every child from this but the reality is our power is more powerful and efficient than each of us physically going to save every child. Our power is the truth that when we pray, the power of the Holy Spirit and heaven’s armies go on assignment retrieving every child and stopping every evil hand one by one. How? Supernaturally through people and angels in place who have the authority to physically tear the curtains down! God has His people in place, but we need to continue to pray that each of us are “awake”, not distracted!

We absolutely have to learn to be comfortable with being uncomfortable! Too long has the church sat back in comfort only doing what feels comfortable and that directly affects our own household. It’s time to contend for God’s church, the body of Christ, to contend with His strength and to pray out His word for the assignment He gave us for Heaven on Earth.

I started to research what “to contend” means. To Contend can be defined as: To engage in a competition; to challenge another in order to win or to achieve something valued. To wage war and to go head-to-head with someone to MAINTAIN YOUR POSITION.

Photo by Anastase Maragos

Be strong through and in the grace that God gives you in Christ Jesus… Now teach these truths to other trustworthy people who will be able to pass them on to others. Join with me in [CONTENDING] as a good soldier of Christ Jesus. Soldiers don’t get tied up (caught) in the affairs of civilian life because then they cannot please the officer who enlisted them. 2 Timothy 2:1-4

We were created to contend for His kingdom! Our fight is the fight of faith in this world. We have to know how to fight and what to fight with. We fight with THE WORD. God’s word has His own faith contained inside of it. When we speak and pray His word, His own faith is carried in that word and released. So even when we don’t feel like it, be confident His word is working.  Even when we are struggling to attach our own faith with it, there is still power at work. That’s how good God is! Our prayers don’t have to be long and detailed, there are times where we can just pray a word like “grace”. “Grace be there, God. I command and send your grace (your ability) there in that situation”.

So we are Christ’s ambassador; God is making His appeal through us. We speak for Christ when we plead… Today is the day of salvation (delivered from all evil)!… We faithfully preach the truth. God’s power is working in us. We use the weapons of righteousness in our right hand for ATTACK and then in the left hand for DEFENSE. We serve God whether people honor us or despise us, whether they slander us or praise us. We are honest, but they call us imposters. We are ignored even though we are all well known. We live close to death, but we are still alive.” 2 Corinthians 5:20-6:9.

Here are my instructions for you based on the prophetic words spoken about you earlier. May they help you fight well in the Lord’s battles. Cling to your faith in Christ and keep your conscience clear. 1 Timothy 1:18-19

For every child of God defeats this evil world, and we achieve this victory through our faith. 1 John 4:5

So we need to stay sensitive to the Spirit of God because God assures us that where the spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty and freedom 2 Corinthians 3:17

Liberty is defined as: the state of being free within society from oppressive restrictions imposed by authority on one’s way of life; the state of not being imprisoned or enslaved.

Photo by Fuu J

God is a consuming fire. When we use our God given authority we send His Spirit  and everyone and everything will be affected and transformed by Him BECAUSE GOD IS THE GREATER INFLUENCE!! That’s why He is described as a fire! A fire transforms whatever is burning. A chemical transformation. That’s truth, it doesn’t matter if you don’t believe it. Disbelief doesn’t stop His power. Your unbelief can hinder the timing, but your unbelief is not greater than His love and will for bringing His Kingdom of Heaven on earth. 

Let’s contend TOGETHER in unity by humbling ourselves to who we declare is our Lord for our nation and across this world. Our Pastor recently said, “ if the Lord is not your Lord, then He isn’t your savior”. Wow! Read that again!

May God who gives this patience and encouragement, help you live in complete harmony with each other, as is fitting for followers of Christ Jesus. Then all of you can join together with one voice, giving praise and glory to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. Romans 15:5-6

Shout aloud and sing for joy, people of Zion [us-the Lord’s servants] for great is the Holy One of Israel among you. Isaiah 12:6

Standing with you in love and prayers, Sara

Uncharted Territory

A Garland of Grace and a Crown of Beauty. Proverbs 4:9

While reading last week, I heard so strongly that the Lord said to write this down for our nation. Speak it over my people, my word carries my own faith and ability in it. So to the United States of America: From Isaiah 41

“Listen in silence before me, you lands beyond the sea (enemy’s camps). Bring your strongest arguments. Come now and speak. The court is ready for your case.

Who has stirred up this king from the east (our leadership), rightly calling him to God’s service? Who gives this man (our leadership) VICTORY OVER MANY nations and permits him to TRAMPLE those nations’ kings underfoot?

With his sword (God’s word spoken like spears out of our mouths), he reduces enemy armies to dust. With his bow, he scatters them like chaff before the wind. He chases them away and goes on safely, EVEN THOUGH HE IS WALKING OVER UNFAMILIAR GROUND (uncharted territory- never been through this before).

Photo by Alexander Andrews

It is I, The Lord, the first and the last. I alone am He.

Who has done such mighty deeds, choosing and appointing EACH new generation from the beginning of time (what an honor that is us!)

Your enemy watches in fear, they tremble and mobilize for war. The idol makers encourage each other to be strong and carefully join together to TRY to destroy my people.”

We know from other scriptures all throughout the Bible- there is a war going on spiritually day and night.. Ephesians 6:12 For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.

“BUT AS FOR YOU, my chosen ones, I have called you back from the ends of the earth telling you that YOU are my servant. (prodigal sons and daughter and all kinds of rescue stories are coming in left and right)

I have CHOSEN YOU and I will not throw you away. DO NOT BE AFRAID, for I AM WITH YOU. DO NOT BE DISCOURAGED for I AM YOUR GOD.

I WILL strengthen you and help you. I WILL hold you up with my victorious right hand.

See all your angry enemies lie there CONFUSED and HUMILIATED! Anyone who opposes you WILL DIE and anything that attacks you will come to NOTHING! For I hold you by your RIGHT hand, I the Lord, your God!

Can we pause for a moment and envision this. His word tells us that He holds my right hand here, right! So to really grasp this, stick your right hand out in front of you like He is reaching for your hand.

Now, we also know in His word that He has told us our position in Christ is at His right side and…… Psalm 63:8 tells us His right hand upholds us! So how exactly can that be, right? If He is on my left and his right hand holds my left hand but yet he holds my right hand too. What does that look like?!

Well if you have your right hand out still and now you stick your left hand out… He is holding both hands; therefore, who is in front of me? HE IS!! He positions Himself in front of us so that we can just look up and turn our eyes on Him alone! Wow!!!

Photo by Priscilla Du Preez

So to finish vs 13, “God says again, don’t be afraid. I am here to help you… I am the Lord YOUR REDEEMER, the Holy one. You will be a NEW threshing instrument with many sharp teeth…”

2 Corinthians 5:17 tells us, This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a NEW person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!

Photo by Miguel Bruna

Many sharp teeth to me references new power! A greater grace and anointing.

Vs 18 picks up with, “I will open up rivers on the high plateaus, I will give them fountains of water in the valleys. I will fill the dessert with pools if water. Rivers fed by springs (Jesus) will flow across the parched ground. I will plant trees (us) in the barren desert (determination)… i am doing this so that all who see this miracle will understand what it means—-that it is the Lord who has done this, the Holy One who created it.”

“Present the case of your idols”, says the Lord. (Anything that has taken the place of God in your lives) “Let them show what they can do,” says the King of Israel (to anyone that is in opposition to the truth).

“Let them try to tell us what happened long ago so that we may consider the evidence. Or let them tell us what the future holds, so we can know whats going to happen (fake news and biased predictions). Yes, tell us what will occur in the days ahead. Then we will know that you are gods.” I can’t not laugh here at the losing enemy!!

“In fact, do anything—good or bad! Do something that will amaze and frighten us. But no! You are less than nothing and can do nothing at all (to the enemy and his army and followers). THOSE WHO CHOOSE YOU POLLUTE THEMSELVES.

But I have stirred up a leader (president, leaders, you). I have called him by name. I WILL GIVE HIM VICTORY over kings and princes (upper, powerful class, and even spiritually speaking who is against you.) He will trample them as a potter treads on clay!

Photo by Tim Mossholder

Who told you from the beginning this would happen? Who predicted this, making you admit that He (God himself) was right? No one said a word.

I was the first to tell Zion (God’s church), ‘LOOK! HELP IS ON THE WAY! I will send a messenger with good news (Jesus, the Holy Spirit, His body).

Not one of your idols told you this. Not one gave you any answer when I asked. See, they are all foolish, worthless things. All of those idols are as empty as the wind itself.”

Wow! Every time I read this scripture now, I just know God is showing us something here to come! This was a prophecy for God’s people. Prophecies are continuous and never ending! That means we get to grab ahold of this for our present time! Why? Because He said so! We are believers, so we believe The Word of God!

This scripture shouldn’t be taken hard. God knows all of us struggle at times with placing our trust and attention on worldly things: idols instead of Him. But God pours out His unconditional love, mercy, and grace daily for us to make the right decision and walk with Him. Partnering with Him in Christ to bring Heaven and His kingdom here on earth!

We don’t give up after days, weeks, months, or even years of hardships. We keep coming to Him with expectation and we keep saying WHAT HE SAYS, not what the world says. That means at home, at work, with family, with friends, anywhere.

We don’t join in with talk of complaining and predicting that the days ahead will be horrible like the news and worldly culture says. We smile with joy on the inside knowing that we will taste and see the goodness of God in the land of the living just as He told us to in scripture! Our days will grow brighter because He loves His church!

Be considered foolish in other’s eyes because in God’s eyes you are the ones who are wise. You are the ones who bring Heaven on earth, not them. They get to enjoy and see the miraculous unfolding because of your “foolishness”.

What shall we say about such wonderful things as these? If God is for us, who can ever be against us? Romans 8:31

“I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”

The bolded parts are the last parts added in 1954. Capital “N” and “under God” speaks volumes for what our country is destined to be! The enemy hates that we use our word to remind him of who we are as a country. This is why the enemy has been workin so hard to divide this nation from the beginning. But we know we can have the victory! Let’s say what God says and agree with what His word says in all things- especially this year!

Sending my love, Sara

Self Preservation: A False Sense of Security

A garland of grace and a crown of beauty. Proverbs 4:9

If fear is anywhere in our decisions, than we need to back up and give the situation to the Lord. What does His word say. I know there isn’t anything about a mandatory mask or vaccination, BUT His Spirit accompanies His word and His word brings about truth. When we see things with BOTH SETS of eyes, we can make the right decision.

From His word we do know that God is love. God’s love offers choices even when the right choice may not be made by the ones He loves. Fear causes us to not see or think clearly because fear isolates our decisions to our natural eyes and our natural wisdom. Even as believers, we can be fooled into thinking we are making decisions with wisdom, but who’s wisdom?

Proverbs 14:12 There is a way that seems right to a person, but it leads to a dead end.

Photo taken from faith magazine

The enemy is crafty and likes to fool us with false wisdom. The enemy also loves to pressure and conform us to his way that just seems so right to us.

I wear a mask at certain times when i feel like God leads me to- mainly it’s only while at work because I am within a foot of people’s mouths (I am a dental hygienist). I actually wear 2 masks: a version of N95 (because it’s still hard for us to find the actual N95s) and then a regular one over that. And in no way do I want to bully or shame or force by law to make people wear a mask for multiple reasons that I don’t need to get into here.

God is never playing catch up, even though we go through seasons of hardship like disease, God has already established everything we need. He is even guiding doctors and scientists with them not even realizing it, but we need to pray that His answers are the ones that are executed, not the voice of scared people or the wolves or the pretenders.

John 10:11-13 “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd sacrifices his life for the sheep. A hired hand will run when he sees a wolf coming. He will abandon the sheep because they don’t belong to him and he isn’t their shepherd. And so the wolf attacks them and scatters the flock. The hired hand runs away because he’s working only for the money and doesn’t really care about the sheep.

Why do people die then? We hear about death rates with this virus. Yes, we do and it is heartbreaking, but again how many people have died from other infections we don’t “understand yet”. The world is full of infectious diseases that the medical field just doesn’t fully understand yet. It’s horrible to watch family members or friends endure. God is not responsible for their death. God is all-knowing, God is all-present, and God is all-powerful, but He doesn’t puppet us. Everything that happens is not because He chose it to happen.

Even if I died today that doesn’t disprove God’s faithfulness or His word. There are many factors like: are we surrounding ourselves with the word of God that He gave us or are we just wishing God will protect us. Are we supporting our immune systems or are we tearing them down because that’s just the culture we live in. Is our lifestyle based on what I like because that’s what our culture has taught me to do- i like what I like, I like what’s easy, I like what I’m used to, and I like what I understand.

Listening to and following the news or even social media and others opinions has the ability to form our thoughts and dictate our peace. Our peace has nothing to do with what’s going on around us. A false sense of security comes from what others say, especially those who hold honorable positions and have been respected by the world or even by the church.

The only one who can give us true protection is God. He is our protector, our redeemer, our shepherd. He stands by us. He probably kneels beside us because that’s the kind of Father He is. Jesus did with the woman facing death by stoning, He knelt down so that she could see that He was with her. He wants you to know He is with you. He wants you to come to the table that He has prepared for you each and every day. What does He have for you today?

Photo taken by unknown from google images

Psalm 23 The Lord is my shepherd;
I have all that I need. He lets me rest in green meadows; he leads me beside peaceful streams. He renews my strength. He guides me along right paths, bringing honor to his name.
Even when I walk through the darkest valley, I will not be afraid, for you, Lord, are close beside me. Your rod and your staff protect and comfort me.
You prepare a feast for me in the presence of my enemies. You honor me by anointing my head with oil. My cup overflows with blessings.
Surely your goodness and unfailing love will pursue me all the days of my life, and I will live in the house of the Lord forever
.

Self preservation is all about ourselves and there is no room for God to step in. This nation is praying for God’s protection 1 minute then turning around and pushing for a back-up plan without Him the next minute. I say “without Him” because do the recommendations and mandates that have come out go with what God’s word says? There is no condemnation here, I just want us all to bring our thinking to Him and let His word expose the truth because I hear many family and friends hurting and saying “I don’t know what to do”. I am not going to try to tell anyone what to do. I will share what I brought to the Lord and what He shared with me. What He tells me to do may not be what He tells you to do.

Hebrews 10:25 We should not stop gathering together with other believers, as some of you are doing. Instead, we must continue to encourage each other even more as we see the day of the Lord coming.

Psalm 34:1-18 I will always thank the Lord; I will never stop praising him. I will praise him for what he has done; may all who are oppressed listen and be glad! Proclaim with me the Lord’s greatness; let us praise his name together!

I prayed to the Lord, and he answered me; he freed me from all my fears. The oppressed look to him and are glad; they will never be disappointed. The helpless call to him, and he answers; he saves them from all their troubles. His angel guards those who honor the Lord and rescues them from danger. Find out for yourself how good the Lord is.

Happy are those who find safety with him. Honor the Lord, all his people; those who obey him have all they need. Even lions go hungry for lack of food, but those who obey the Lord lack nothing good. Come, my young friends, and listen to me, and I will teach you to honor the Lord.

Would you like to enjoy life? Do you want long life and happiness? Then keep from speaking evil and from telling lies. Turn away from evil and do good; strive for peace with all your heart. The Lord watches over the righteous and listens to their cries; but he opposes those who do evil, so that when they die, they are soon forgotten. The righteous call to the Lord, and he listens; he rescues them from all their troubles. The Lord is near to those who are discouraged; he saves those who have lost all hope

I don’t want to get to Heaven and Him say, “I am so proud of you for being the love and light in the world with the best of your ability, but why didn’t you do it with the best of my ability”. I don’t want Him to say, “but you could have still come to my house in my name… you could have still used my weapon of praise through singing the enemy’s attacks out of your midst… you could have saved multitudes where I needed you, but you chose to do it in your own safety.” I don’t want to get Heaven and realize “oh man, you mean I could have done that!?”

Matthew 16: 13-19 “Who do the people say I am?”…“But who do you say I am?” Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.” Jesus replied, “You are blessed, Simon, because MY FATHER IN HEAVEN HAS REVEALED THIS TO YOU. YOU DID NOT LEARN THIS FROM ANY HUMAN BEING. Now I say to you that you are Peter (which means ‘rock’), and upon this rock I will build my church, and all the powers of hell will not conquer it. And I will give you the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven. Whatever you forbid on earth will be forbidden in heaven, and whatever you permit on earth will be permitted in heaven.”

The best decision we can make is the one that comes from Him and Him alone. If your knowledge of other’s circumstances accompany your question, your decision will not be based on what He reveals to you. It will be hard to sift what you have heard and think away from what He has said.

Photo taken from workingwomenoffaith.com

If I’m choosing to be in places with other people and I have more peace being around them than I have peace being in His house, with His church for His mission and purpose, why is that? If you are getting offended at this point, please don’t! Offense is the bait of satan. I’m just sharing with you what conversations God and myself have had.

If He told me that He assembled His church upon the very foundation of Jesus and the gates of hell cannot prevail against His church, then why am I not going to go to the source of His life for my life? Why am I not going to the source of His life for my assignment in others lives?

Psalm 150 Praise the Lord! Praise God in his sanctuary; praise him in his mighty heaven! Praise him for his mighty works; praise his unequaled greatness! Praise him with a blast of the ram’s horn; praise him with the lyre and harp! Praise him with the tambourine and dancing; praise him with strings and flutes! Praise him with a clash of cymbals; praise him with loud clanging cymbals. Let everything that breathes sing praises to the Lord! Praise the Lord!

Photo taken from IBelieve

If He put HIS breath in my lungs, how can I preserve my breath from singing in His house? If He is who He says He is, why am I keeping my family from Him? Why am I showing my children that God cant protect us in His own church? Why am I coming to church, but Im not bring my own children to church? Why am I worried when God tells me not to fear? Why am I trying to save my life, when God already saved it?

Matthew 16:25 If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake, you will save it.

Isaiah 54:17 No weapon that is formed against you will prosper; And every tongue that accuses you in judgment you will condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, And their vindication is from Me,” declares the Lord.

God is the vindicator of His name and for His church.

Ephesians 1:18-23 I pray that your hearts will be flooded with light so that you can understand the confident hope he has given to those he called—his holy people who are his rich and glorious inheritance.I also pray that you will understand the incredible greatness of God’s power for us who believe him. This is the same mighty power that raised Christ from the dead and seated him in the place of honor at God’s right hand in the heavenly realms. Now he is FAR ABOVE any ruler or authority or power or leader or anything else—not only in this world but also in the world to come. God has put all things under the authority of Christ and has made Christ head over all things for the benefit of the church. And the church is his body; it is made full and complete by Christ, who fills all things everywhere with himself.

Again, I am not trying to tell anyone what to do, my heart and prayer is for His people to walk fully in the plans He needs you for! So if He reveals to you what He revealed to me, ask Him how and only Him. There is no safer place to be than where He has told you to be and doing what He has instructed you to do. Wear a mask where He tells you to. Get a vaccine when He tells you to. Go to church when He tells you to. But don’t do what others tell you to.

Your honor for His word needs to be far above your honor for what others say. Pray for your leaders—in your family, your work, your church, your city, your school district, your state, your country, and the world. God has changed the minds of vast nations and armies many, many times before and He can do it again with us. His culture, His way.

https://crowned-with-everlasting-joy.com/2020/05/07/a-culture-revolution/

All my love, Sara

Don’t tell me what to do

A garland of grace and a crown of beauty. Proverbs 4:9

“Don’t tell me what to do”… “Don’t preach at me”… “I am not your child”

How many of us have loved ones say these phrases to us when we are sharing God’s word with those who we love are hurting? They don’t think they are hurting. They don’t want anyone helping them.

They may even come to you, but just want to unload and “get stuff off their chest” and “just listen” they ask. Yes, we need to listen because God is an incredible listener and since we have been grafted into His body in Christ, we have that gift to listen too, but we also are called to encourage and help others up.

When the venting is over, what does God do with you? Some of us may think He just sits there quietly, smiling blankly without any wisdom and we “leave the room” the same way we came in.

Letting our frustrations and anger and sorrow out to God is good as long as we don’t leave His presence the same way we came into it. I’ve heard Pastor Bill Johnson say something like, if you leave God’s presence the same way you entered, then all you’ve done is whine and complain, but if you allowed God’s Spirit to transform you so that when you are done you leave in a better state of heart and mind.

I love that! Such a great perspective for not only our time with God alone, but also in our times with those God placed in our lives to be His vessel of wisdom. When someone you love, respect, and honor listens and then shares what’s on their hearts in encouragement and truth- why would we respond with phrases like “Don’t tell me what to do”, “Don’t preach at me”, or “I’m not your kid (unless you are their kid-haha!)”.

Blinded by pride… self wisdom… worldly culture… lack of honor… See, God tells us in the Bible, that we are all slaves/servants to something or someone. We all have the choice to serve God and ultimately be free… or to serve the devil through serving ourselves and ultimately be in chains.

The culture of the world- what we feel and see- is opposite than the culture of God and His kingdom. Here, we think we are free when we think, say, and do anything we want to, but we aren’t… we can be fooled into thinking we can demonstrate that we are believers and that we do the things we do out of love, but if those things don’t mirror God, than what are we demonstrating? What are we tied to? We are chained to the things we think, say, and do…So the question is what is at the end of that chain?

As believers, we are slaves or servants to God. We sacrifice our flesh in what our flesh wants to think, say, or do to the Holy Spirit of God. Jesus lived by this example. He only said and did what the Father said to say and do. When Jesus battled thoughts, he sacrificed himself to God’s word and prayer to “come out” transformed and better than He had came in.

Our flesh doesn’t like admitting we need help. Our flesh likes bitterness and anger and justification in being hurt. Our flesh likes slandering others and raising our thoughts over others. Our flesh doesn’t like someone using divine authority trying to help us. Our flesh doesn’t like being transformed, why? Because of what’s at the end of those chains. The enemy wants to be your anchor because that’s how he has power.

But God wants to be your anchor because that’s how He gives YOU HIS POWER.

Whatever you are going through, let God “tell you what to do” and “preach at you” because you are His kid! He identifies you as HIS OWN CHILD – the one He loves.

He wants to see you transformed so that you can transform the world!

Photo by Ben White

Therefore I, a prisoner for serving the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of your calling for you have been called by God.

Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love.

Make every effort to keep yourselves united in the Spirit, binding yourselves together with peace.

For there is one body and one Spirit, just as you have been called to one glorious hope for the future.

We will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of His body, the church.

And “don’t sin by letting anger control you”. Don’t let the sun go down while you are still angry, for anger gives a foothold to the devil.

Don’t use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them.

Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of evil behavior. Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you. Ephesians 4: 1-4,15, 26, 29, 31-32

Photo by David Iskander

Sending my love, Sara

Invading the Enemy’s Camp

A Garland of Grace and A Crown of Beauty. Proverbs 4:9

A couple of months ago, I shared a blog titled “Rise Up” and it came from a sentence God highlighted to me in prayer. “Let’s COMMAND confusion in the enemy’s camp!”

The Lord showed me the story of David defeating Goliath and how David rose up from the inside out because he knew whose servant He was! He knew they were more than just Saul’s servants as Goliath had identified them.

The people forgot who they were and whose they were. Saul was the king and technically they were Saul’s servants, but Saul got his authority from God. They, along with Saul, were God’s servants. But they saw Saul daily because, well, he was their king in the natural realm. This can happen to us so easily. If we focus on what we see daily from our mayors, our governors, our president, etc through the news, we form what “camp” we are in.

We can think we are in the enemy’s camp from where we stand because we see all the threats, injustice, and fear instead of where our actual spiritual feet are-in God’s kingdom. I can stand on my land and look so far out because I live on a hill that I can see things that are not the same as where I am standing.

Photo by Illia Vjestica

That’s the same with us as believers, we stand far above and we can see far in front of us, but these weapons cannot destroy us. The enemy has no authority to step foot on our ground, but we can “take ourselves” to his operating ground. We know that God stands over us and surrounds us. God placed us in Christ’s body, He seated us right beside Him.

If I watch a scary battle scene in a 3D movie with physical sensory stimulations like the ride “Soarin” at WDW, I don’t have to be afraid that I’m going to be hurt, right? If we are spiritually seated in Christ, in God’s kingdom, as our physical feet walk upon this physical earth, we are going to see and feel things that frighten us. God says over and over and over again and will lovingly continue to because He knows we need the encouragement to “take heart” and to “not fear” because if “God is for us, than who can remain standing against us!”.

Elisha saw the enemy camp all around him, but he didn’t fear because he knew God would send confusion and defeat into the enemy’s camp. Elisha knew in his heart the truth that there were far more defending him and his servant than there were soldiers in the enemy’s camp. Christ sees the enemy’s camps, but Christ KNOWS where He stands/ sits. Even David knew the philistine’s enemy camp had no place being there, tormenting God’s kingdom and that was before Jesus came. So do we know what camp we are in?

When God defeated Goliath through David, confusion broke out in the enemy’s camp because out of what seemingly was out of nowhere defeat became their reality! This was and is my prayer still! (Confusion in the enemy’s camp) …. But last night the Lord laid it on my heart to go even further in prayer! It’s time to go further, it’s time to pray for an invasion in the enemy’s camps!

Photo by Tim Foster

We can ADVANCE and TAKE GROUND, not just holding steady our victorious ground telling others to come to us, but reaching others and taking them OUT OF THE enemy’s camps. God told Adam and Eve to flourish and multiply, to occupy more and more land beyond what they had been given. Why? Why should we pray for invasions in the enemy’s camps? Because not only are there soon-to-be believers over there, but there are many believers stuck, blinded like a deer in headlights, and being puppeted into the enemy’s camps because they have become confused and fooled on which way to go.

What do I mean by that? Every single day, i hear and see where christians are using their platforms at work, in groups, on social media to voice their “incredible” and “justifiable” opinions on what they think and see. It could be easy for me to get frustrated and critical over why are they doing this?! They say they love Jesus and that they are christians, but their lives demonstrate something else entirely, BUT…. I would be falling into that very same trap that they fell into. Exalting my opinion and my frustration over what God says and what faith says.

My love for them has to continue to be greater than my opinion on the matter. My heart breaks because brother is turning against sister, father against daughter, friend against friend, a nation against itself- a civil war. There is this giant of “if you don’t stand with me in my opinion, than you are against me and you are wrong.” A battle for who is right. A battle for conformity. A war of opinion verse heart.

We have been given such a gift in the United States of America, under God, just like Adam and Eve had been given in the garden of Eden: freedom. God created them and loved them and gave them everything they needed, but He didn’t take away the choice to choose to honor, love, and trust Him by avoiding the one tree of death. God didn’t set that tree there to taunt them, it was there to show them right from wrong because otherwise what choice do they really have? Love is what offers freedom and choice. Unconditional love is OVER your freedom of speech and over your freedom to choose. When we try to exalt our freedom and justification over our love, can we really offer love?

Our Pastor displayed this concept beautifully recently. He said if someone is thirsty, how can I offer them water if my hand is not under the water itself. Try it. To be able to hand someone the water that I want to give them, I have to place my hand under what I want to give.

So if I want to change the world and make it better, can I do that if I exalt myself above everything? Can i offer wisdom if my hand isn’t under it? Can I offer peace if my hand isn’t under it? Can I offer love, hope, joy, restoration, etc if my hand isn’t under it? No, i have to humble myself and my own opinion and even my doubt to come under what God says to be able to give that to others. His word alone is what changes the world.

We do not conform to this world (where satan’s ways are the culture), we are to let God transform our ways to the culture of God by the continual renewal of our minds (humbling our opinions) SO THAT we can know God’s good will for us. Romans 12:2

We can’t honor God or offer any restoration without humbling ourselves. We use our freedom to say and do what God says, not what others say. This goes for everything going on in the world today: racism, disease, etc because ultimately all of it is a threat to our humanity and the culture God prepared a way for us to have.

There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death. Proverbs 14:12

There’s always going to be a way that looks right to the world and to your flesh/senses, but it’s a dead end. “Rise up”, as I have said before! Don’t be puppeted and fooled by the enemy and following false lights. If someone says “I’m for peace and justice”, but all his words to others is hatred, abusive, and degrading…that’s a false light. Just because it says something, doesn’t mean it really is that something.

I see it like this: many people have wandered down the wrong path. How? They came to the crossroads, but the enemy turned the arrow that pointed to the “wisdom” lane around to where it pointed to the “false wisdom” lane. It say’s it’s right, it looks right, it feels right, but it’s not right.

Photo by Jakob Stenqvist

The enemy knows we have a purpose united together. I see people passionate to fight for something that they can feel like they are making a difference in the world, that they are standing for something better, trying to make the wrongs right.

The passion for that is not the problem, in fact that vision and that internal desire is from God. We were created for a purpose that included fighting for something. That something is the culture of Heaven on earth full of unity, unconditional love, peace, forgiveness, honor, and yes-justice. We have forgotten our place, whose we are, who we are servants to, and ultimately what camp we are in. While I was in prayer and saw this invasion, I saw people rising up and out of the enemy’s camps! The enemies hands are tied in confusion and can’t stop this great awakening.

Photo by Austin Kehmeier

Sharing our opinions have become our source of pride. Pride takes us into the enemy’s camp. Instead of magnifying what God is doing and what God is saying, we end up magnifying what the enemy is doing and saying. That pride and the power of using our voice to speak our opinions is really a much less use of power and the short end of the stick in comparison. The enemy’s power is actually INCOMPARABLE to the power of God. Satan is no match, not even a contender against our God and the power that God made available to us through using our voice speaking His word in our situations on the earth. God gave us power in our words and the enemy knows that; which is why the enemy tries to persuade the words that we speak.

I appeal to you, dear brothers and sisters, by the authority of our Lord Jesus Christ, to live in harmony with each other. Let there be no divisions among you in the church. Rather, be of 1 mind, UNITED in THOUGHT and PURPOSE…. 1 Corinthians 1:10

We aren’t all in the body of Christ because we are united in everything we like and dislike, in our past or our present. We are called to stand guard to be united for our future, to transform our thoughts by God’s word, and to walk in our God assigned purpose. Too often, the gifts God gives us become spoiled with ourselves. We think our way and our “wisdom” is superior than others because it’s justifiable, makes sense, and sounds good.

1 Corinthians 1:18-31: [But] the message of the cross is foolish to those who are headed for destruction! We, who are being saved, know it is the very power of God. As the scriptures say, “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise and discard the intelligence of the intelligent.” So where does this leave the philosophers, the scholars, the world’s brilliant debaters?

God has made the wisdom of this world look foolish. Since God in His wisdom saw to it that the world would never know Him through human wisdom, He has used our “foolish” preaching to save those who believe.

It is foolish to the Jews, who ask for signs from Heaven. And it is foolish to the greeks, who seek human wisdom. So when we preach that Christ was crucified, the Jews are OFFENDED and the gentiles say it’s all NONSENSE.

But to those called by God to salvation, both Jews and Gentiles, Christ is the POWER of God and the WISDOM of God. This “foolish” plan of God is wiser than the wisest of human plans, and God’s weakness is stronger than the greatest of human strength.

Remember, dear brothers and sisters, that few of you were wise in the world’s eyes or powerful or wealthy WHEN GOD CALLED YOU. Instead, God chose things the world considers foolish in order to shame those who think they are wise. And He chose things that are powerless to shame those who are powerful. God chose things despised by the world, things counted as nothing at all, and USED THEM to bring to nothing what the world considers important. As a result, no one can ever boast in the presence of God.

God has united you with Christ Jesus. For our benefit, God made HIM to be WISDOM itself. Christ made us right with God; He made us pure and holy, and He freed us from sin. Therefore, as the Scriptures say, “If you want to boast, boast only about the Lord.”

Is this not powerful and timely wisdom! Let’s take a step back and look at where we are. Are you in the enemy’s camp? If so, let’s go. You are called to rise up out of there. God came to rescue you from that place! Or are you in the right camp, but your focus is on the enemy’s camp, gripped with doubt and fear, saying what the enemy wants you to believe about your future? If so, wipe your eyes, be reminded of who you are and whose you are! Say what God says EVEN IF the world says it’s dumb and foolish, unlikely and impossible. Laugh and say “with my God all things are possible! I have what He says I have! I am who He says I am!” and stand up straighter with God’s confidence in you. Let’s go invade the enemy’s camps!!!!

Photo by Jaanus Jagomagi

Much love, Sara

Do I need endo help?

A garland of grace and a crown of beauty. Proverbs 4:9

Approximately 40% of the US population suffers from various degrees of hypothyroidism. That means approximately over 132 million of us in the US have some form of low functioning thyroid issues. Many are suffering from such symptoms and don’t know what the cause is.

I have many patients who are on some form of medication like synthroid or hormonal medications because of their diagnosis’s.

The amazing thing about a diagnosis is the fact that the blood of Jesus OVERRIDES the diagnosis and REDEEMS our bodies! God has the final word, The Name of Jesus is above every name!

The severe form of hypothroidism becomes hashimotos which is an auto-immune disease where the body has become so out of balance that it attacks itself by restricting itself from producing the necessary thyroid hormones the body needs to function the way God created it to.

The thyroid gland is considered your energy gland which controls your body’s metabolism. The thyroid gland is essential to your endocrine system overall and is responsible for vital functions such as hormone balance, digestion, circulation, immune function, and emotions (like depression).

The endocrine system is a chemical messenger system full of feedback loops of the hormones released by our internal glands directly into our circulatory system, regulating the targeted organs affected.

The major endocrine glands are the thyroid and the adrenal glands. There are many other organs that are part of other body systems that actually have secondary endocrine functions, including bone, kidneys, liver, heart, skin, GI tract, and gonads.

The Endocrine System
Photo shared from Google

Our thyroid gland supports and balances our nervous system and the adrenal glands. I shared how I made my own adrenal support roller a couple weeks ago with friends on my personal page. If anyone is interested in this, let me know.

Our nervous system is highly complex and coordinates the necessary actions and sensory information by transmitting signals to and from different parts of the body. So the nervous system detects environmental changes that impact the body, then works in partnership with the endocrine system to respond to those environmental changes in the targeted areas in our bodies.

Our adrenals regulate our metabolism and control the release of hormones for blood pressure and stress. ADRENAL FATIGUE can really cause problems that negatively impact your daily life. In people with severely fatigued adrenals, the adrenal activity is so diminished that they may have difficulty getting out of bed for more than a few hours per day. With each increment of reduction in adrenal function, as they get more and more overworked, every organ and system in your body becomes more profoundly affected.

As I have mentioned before, the Limbic system is a set of structures in the brain that regulates our body’s homeostasis: ability to maintain internal stability (stay within healthy range). The Hypothalamus is the structure that is your control center which is responsible for so many VITAL responses in our bodies (endocrine system). The Hypothalamus tells the Pituitary Gland what to do, which is the main communicator throughout your whole body.

Endoflex is a Young Living powerful combination of Spearmint, Sage, Geranium, Myrtle, and Nutmeg. Personally, I apply it every morning to the thyroid area in my neck.

There are so many incredible testimonies of women and men who use Endoflex for thyroid, hormonal, and diabetic issues! This medicinal tool is powerful when accompanied with the right nutritional plan!

And if you don’t struggle with any of those issues, this is still a great oil for YOU especially if you are like me and have turned 35! Remember health and overall wellness is as much about preventative maintenance as it is a response to a diagnosis.

Don’t wait for cells, organs, and systems to start shutting down, let’s use the wisdom and tools God gives us in HIS WORD and plants to prevent issues. Our bodies were created by His hand and in His image, Jesus victoriously sacrificed His life for our bodies to be whole! Our bodies are the very temples for His Spirit to dwell in and from!

Real results for a real response from your body requires addressing the multi-faceted system as a whole and using oils that are 100% potent and bioavailable!

Please don’t take what I say and go buy essential oils from other companies. That is incredibly dangerous. Young living is the only company with the standards and foundation of a seed to seal promise with first distillation properties in each batch.

A friend shared this and it gave me such an incredible visual to really comprehend the depth of the Young Living promise.

1st compared to the 6th distillation of coffee grinds

Most of the essential oil companies sold to stores at best are a 6th distillation of essential oils from plants with added synthetic fillers! Would you like a 6th distillation of coffee or would you want to drink the best, from the 1st batch?

My heart is to help others find healing in ways that God may lead you to. Those ways may not be found in conventional, pharmaceuticals that are full of synthetic ingredients and more than likely side effects- instant or long term

I hope this information reaches anyone who needs it! If you want more information, please reach out to me.

Much love, Sara