Being a Nation Within a Nation

matryoshka-doll-method-work-for-you-imageI grew up in a time when the U.S. was widely considered as a Christian nation. The majority shared similar values in raising families and building a free and self-sustaining life based on Christian principles. The Bible and prayer were a common part of public education and we could, at least somewhat, trust our elected officials to work in an ethical way on our behalf, make good and moral judgments, and effect justice. It was easy to live a Christian life on cruise.

It is a different story today.

While many debate the current identity of America as being a Christian nation or not, I believe the greater concern begins with the identity of Christ’s body within this nation.

Like ancient Israel, we have come to a time when, as the prophet Isaiah said, “Our courts tidal-waveoppose the righteous, justice is nowhere to be found, truth has fallen in the streets, and honesty has been outlawed. Truth is nowhere to be found and whoever shuns evil is become a prey.” (Isa. 59:14-15) Thankfully, Isaiah also said that when the enemy comes at us like a flood, the Lord will raise up a standard against him. Whether lawlessness likes it or not, the Creator is, indeed, the true Ruler of Nations. Darkness finds its boundaries when the light shines.

There are those, however, who believe that evil rulers, such as the Illuminati, apparently have carte blanche in running the world so it doesn’t matter what we do, if we pray, or how we vote. While Satan wages war to direct events his way and uses people to do his bidding, he is a lesser being and even his most influential pawns don’t run the world. God does. The King of Kings has not abdicated His throne. And Father says that when His people pray, He will answer and will raise Himself up as a Mighty One against the onslaught.

As God’s family we must see ourselves in a new light. We DO make a difference. We are the salt that preserves the earth as long as our savor is active. God calls His people a nation of priests — we are a nation within whatever nation we call home. We are here as ministers of reconciliation. That means we work with Father through prayer and action to bring culture out of darkness and into the beautiful light and His glorious designs for mankind.

Just like the matryoshka dolls (the set of smaller dolls within a larger doll) so are God’s people a smaller but powerfully significant part within a larger people group. Satan opposes God’s people because he knows that nations rise and fall not on what the illuminati decides but on the prayers and actions of God’s people.

saying-yesIn the Hebrew language, the word “priest” (Kohen) means “to reveal the heart of yes to God and His ways.” We may be seeing a lot of “yes” to darkness and corruption driving this nation, but there is also a movement happening – an awakening of revival to a new day of a bold “Yes!” to God and His ways among His people.

As a nation of priests within this nation, God is looking for our “yes” in caring for America with Him. Let us lift the standard of holy love as we pray boldly, live boldly…and, yes, vote boldly with the mind of Christ in the upcoming elections.

 

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You are Accepted by God

Acceptance billboardThe longing to be accepted and loved is innate in every human being. And no wonder, we were fashioned by the Holy Trinity who exist in perfect love and acceptance.

The sense of being loved and accepted creates a joy and energy within the human heart that is needed for wellbeing and momentum in life. Broken relationship with God, others, self-rejection, the betrayal by friends, and negative interaction with family or leaders, easily creates a dark inner environment that shadows our sense of being loved and accepted. These tear the very fiber of our soul from living radiantly and joyfully in the intimate knowledge of being a cherished human being. And so the soul looks for various means to satisfy this deep longing, often in unhealthy places.

God wants each one of us to experience the wellbeing of His intimate and unending love and acceptance of us for a life that flourishes with health. Ephesians 1:6 says that it is His magnificent delight to honor us with His favor and blessings in the Beloved. “He lovingly invites us to come to Him always, no matter what our past has been…no matter the current mistakes we make. In the Beloved we are fully accepted and received with love.”*

Abba Father has provided the means for us in Christ to move forward with life, energy, and wellbeing in our soul. Jesus fills, renews, and restores every broken place within us with His perfect love and acceptance. He energizes our spirit and soul for the life we are meant to live. People may fail (including us) but He does not. His face is turned towards us in love…it is turned toward you.

Three keys to living a life energized by love and acceptance:

  1. Receive Jesus’ loving thoughts about you while refusing another’s faulty words or behavior towards you — do not internalize others’ behavior as the truth by which you think and live
  2. Practice loving others — let Jesus’ love flow through you to others; it is the power that overcomes fear and covers over a multitude of sins with forgiveness
  3. Practice accepting others — accepting others in spite of differences releases a life flow of heavenly energy

Take time today to identify any thought pattern that makes you feel unaccepted. Bring it to the Father who will show you His truth. Let Him root your heart deeply in His love and wrap you warmly in the embrace of His accepting arms. Then go and share His love and acceptance with someone else.

*excerpt from The Believer’s Identity Devotional Handbook by J. Nicole Williamson

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New Book: The Believer’s Identity

 

Believers id handbook Small Master front cvrJesus was the master of identity clarity. With a heart anchored in His Father’s love and a mind grounded in Abba’s affirmation, the living reality of that relationship with His Father defined both His identity and everything He did. It energized how He showed up in life on Earth.

And no wonder, His Father set the tone of identity clarity all through His Word as Jehovah-jireh, El Shaddai, El Olam, Jehovah-shalom, and thousands of other names used to describe how He shows us for His people, including how He shows up against His enemies as a Man of War!

Jesus lived out of a clear identity. He showed up every Believer's ID Marketing Picmorning as the Love of God that warmed men’s hearts with holy fire. He showed up on the hillsides as the light of truth that led lost souls out of darkness and into the brightness of hope. He showed up in the midst of people’s circumstances as the Living Bread that satisfied their heart’s desires. He showed up in town square’s as the Healer, and on city streets as the powerful Deliverer. He was the Glory of the Father, the Wisdom of the Ages and the Lamb of God who showed up as Heaven’s answer to broken mankind.

So too, Abba wants us to know who we are as His children. Our identity in Christ should be clear and the very foundation of our work and purpose. God’s Word is full of ways in how He describes not only Himself, but how He describes us — His children, sons, daughters, Christ’s bride, Yeshua’s body, the salt of the earth, and the light. Some think of being a Christian as simply believing that Jesus exists and is who He says He is, but miss what that means for them, too, as His body. It is time to know the truth about Father, Jesus, Holy Spirit…and us!

In my new book The Believers Identity Devotional Handbook: 120 “I am” Statements of a Christian, is a dynamic list of who we are as Christians. A few of the statements include:

  • I am Accepted
  • I am Accompanied by Angels
  • I am Called of God
  • I am Deeply Loved
  • I am a Kingdom Ambassador
  • I am a Mountain Climber
  • I am Marked with Divine Purpose
  • I am a Lover of Truth
  • I am a Relationship Builder
  •  more….

It is time to unveil the dynamic answer to the age old question of “who am I?” The answer is clear – I am marvelously loved, wonderfully made in His image, and called to be a light in this world.

It is time for the sons and daughters of God to show up…

Nations are waiting!

 

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Let God’s People Arise

Nations rise and nations fall,

Esther Mandate Marketing

“Powerful! Informative! Strategic!”  www.amazon.com

Who will stand and heed the call,

To fast and pray and actions take,

For a nation’s future is at stake!

 

Queen Esther of old faced a similar plight,

She entered the fray; she engaged the fight!

She called God’s people to gather as one,

Through united action the battle was won.

 

America, America, will your champion arise?

Or will you be left to a sad demise?

With chaos in the camp of those who lead,

It’s time for the Esther’s to get on their knees,

And pray…then take action!

 

Abba’s daughter

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5 Keys to Empowered Thinking

Eliminate the negatives“Our lives are affected much more by our mindset than by our circumstances,” says Marian Struble, and I wholeheartedly agree!

Attitude is the great determiner of how we live our lives each day. And here is the greatest part of all – we have the ability and power to choose our attitude, whether it works for us as our friend or against us as our foe.

“Attitude” means our approach, outlook, stance, or way of thinking about something. How we approach the issues of daily life can either lift us to higher achievements and a sense of delight in who we are, what we do, and the nearness of our Faithful Guide, or it can pull us down into a lonely abyss of negative emotions where hopeless, despairing thoughts wreak havoc in our soul.

American author, David Foster Wallace, said, “A huge percentage of the stuff that I tend to be automatically certain of is, it turns out, totally wrong and deluded.”

Life’s issues, changes, and challenges have a way of standing before us as a threatening giant hurling fearful words and inspiring dreadful imaginations. Most of these thoughts, however, are often the wild imaginations of a negative possibility that, more than not, never transpires. Or if it does, the giant then says we will be stuck there forever.

Taking down these domineering thoughts and turning them to positive energy isn’t always easy, but terribly necessary for the life we were created to live.

To have a right mental attitude with empowered thinking means we have to stop and address the negative thoughtsdavid-goliath and anxieties that can flourish in the midst of life’s challenges. Negativity, anxiety, and despair are destiny killers, hope blockers, and will wrap the mind in tormenting fear if allowed. This includes unbridled anger.

What to do? We must dare to be a modern David who stands and addresses these gargantuan words with divine truth and Presence. To win in life, we must face our giant and take him down, and then cut off his head with his own sword…figuratively speaking, of course.

5 Keys to empowered thinking that takes down giants:

  1. Refuse to lean on your own limited understanding — don’t let your finite thinking rule you like a tyrant. Seek wisdom and counsel.
  2. Train your mind to see beyond what’s in front of you — you are wired in God’s image to be a problem solver, not a victim.
  3. Go talk with Abba Father about the situation – His solutions include limitless possibilities in the way heaven works with earth. Lean on His understanding.
  4. Declare what you hear from God over the situation — don’t further the problem and your pain through verbalizing dark emotions and despair into the current challenge.
  5. Choose an empowered approach to your situation, remembering the words of Thomas Jefferson who said, “Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude.”

Today is a perfect day for taking down destiny-blocking negativity that is screaming at you, draining your energy, inviting despair, and debilitating you from a life of joy and forward movement.

Blow your clouds aways as you let the light of God’s love, care, and possibilities energize your thoughts and emotions. Doing so will release creativity and confidence for today’s success and life’s solutions. This is the life you were made for.

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

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God, You, and America in 2016

Ask God 2016One of the things I love about God as a Father is how He wants us to participate with Him in what He does, including His plans for our nation. God designed heaven and earth to work together in beautiful unison.

It is why Jesus prayed, “…on earth as it is in heaven.”

It is why angels work with us for the purposes of God.

At the beginning of every year, my husband and I spend time praying and listening to God for His focus for our lives in that year. This year, His direction for me comes from Psalm 2:8 where He says, “Ask of Me, and I will give You the nations for Your inheritance.” My first thought when I read this was, why does God want me to ask Him for an inheritance? As a parent myself I am preparing everything so that when I am no longer here, everything I have will automatically go to my kids. They don’t have to ask me for it. It’s already theirs.

So I asked God, “Why do I need to ask You? ”

Questions often lead me to great though challenging answers. Here is what I found. To “ask” (Heb. “sha’al”) means: to inquire carefully, to seek counsel, to ask as matters of business. Business is about creating wealth. With God, wealth manifests in myriad ways…spiritual, emotional, understanding, as well as financial. Anyone who runs a business understands there are many dynamics involved for it to prosper; each area must be functioning optimally. God, too, wants us to prosper in every way. He wants America to prosper in every way as He designed for it in His goodness.

God is not a puppet-master who controls people to make things happen. We each have a unique part in working with Him for the full prospering of our lives, communities, and nation…a nation that will one day be Christ’s inheritance and ours as His body. I believe the “matters of business” not only involves prayer, but actual business too and if we seek His counsel, He will show us new ways to prosper in creativity and entrepreneurship.

In other words, we each have an important part to engage, with God, for America’s destiny. America is in a pivotal year and our engagement for her direction is critical.

What is your part?

Here are 6 Ways to Partner with God in 2016 for America:

  1. Pray and ask Him what He wants you specifically to do. Seek His counsel. If you ask, He will show you.
  2. Spend time in prayer with music that opens your heart to His presence. Pay attention to the thoughts and pictures you see in your spirit-man that are from God. Write them down or draw them. Maybe even paint them. Bring them from the invisible realm to the visible as an agreement with what you hear from God and form them into a prayer. That prayer may be for someone specific or a people group.
  3. Get involved with what God wants to do in your community in practical ways. God wants the best for our regions and nation.
  4. Watch for new business ideas or ways to prosper this year. Believe in the beautiful way God made you and move forward as He shows you how.
  5. Connect with others who are praying over the city, county, and state.
  6. Pray for God’s choice of leadership for America this year. And vote for who you hear God telling you to vote for. And vote! Yours might be the deciding voice.

This is what I’m doing in 2016 – asking how I can partner with Him for a nation.

What are you doing in 2016?

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Happy Thanksgiving

Gratitude - ciceroThis week we celebrate Thanksgiving with warm meals made with love as the heart of family and friends reconnect around the dining table. It is a memorial of America’s early immigrant settlers’ first successful harvest in a new land—a feast shared with the Wampanoags who aided them in planting crops. It is a time of remembering how the pilgrims had survived harsh beginnings in an unfamiliar place, yet with the help of strangers.

Every one of us has faced challenges and difficulties in life. Some we have overcome with fairly easily solutions, while other trials have overwhelmed us with grief or even left us emotionally wounded. Nevertheless, one thing remains sure—we are not alone and we are not without hope. We have God who watches over us night and day and who sends us people to help us on our way.

This is what makes Thanksgiving so special — a feast that is honored from generation to generation as we celebrate the truth that we not only need one another, but that we have one another, and we are grateful for one another. We are grateful that God has given us Himself, our family and friends—grateful that we are loved and that we can love others because God fills us with His radiant love.

The ability to be grateful is a gift from God. Gratitude is a radiant force that harnesses our often-troubled thoughts with positive energy. It redirects our focus, lifting our vision to see fresh possibilities greater than our obstacles and challenges. Gratitude empowers us to see our past, present, and future in new ways—with hope and faith. Gratitude is the guardian of joyful perspectives when circumstances tell us otherwise. It inspires our heart with the sweet remembrance that we are loved and valued by One who works all things for good, One who can work miracles and wonders right in the middle of our impossibilities…one who surrounds us with the love and encouragement of friends and family.

Let this Thanksgiving be a time of remembering how much God loves you and is able to do above and beyond what you could ask or think in whatever area of challenge you may be facing. Let it be a time of remembering good things as you gather with family and friends.

May you be blessed from above in this special time of year.

In everything give thanks for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thess.5:18

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Fathering a Nation

Life with Abba Father front cvr MasterToday in America we are observing a National Day of Prayer — a corporate time of dialoguing with our Heavenly Father specifically about the wellbeing of our nation. We are talking with Him because we need Him. We need His counsel, wisdom and guidance for lives that prosper in divine purpose. And what’s more, He wants to help us because He loves us. He knows that our own understanding is not sufficient for the greatness that He has called us to, and that left to ourselves we perish.

The prophet Malachi said that when the hearts of fathers and children turn to one another the land would be healed. It is family love that is the key to a nation’s wellbeing, and the key to family love is relationship with Abba Father whose heart is already turned toward us. As the Initiator of our life, His love brings the healing that we desperately need as individuals, families, and as a nation.

Just as the heart of a father celebrates his child and works in every way to see that child flourish in life and purpose, so Abba deeply celebrates us and wants to see us and our nation prosper in divine purpose. Love is how He sees America. As a Father, He wants to see our families and our national family prosper in His good plans for us. His presence with us is the most significant thing we can have for that end.

Here are five ways to draw close to Abba Father and pray for our nation:

  1. Have faith in God — believe that your words are heard and valued. Abba Father both hears us and speaks with us. As people, we draw close to those who value our life and there is no one who loves and values us more than God who created us in His image. Our words carry weight in the courts of heaven as we align ourselves with the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. We may tend to pull back from those who we feel only tolerate us — but that is not how our Father views us. The more we are grounded in His love, the more we are free to draw near, share our thoughts, feelings, and desires, and listen to His…and pray them with confidence and authority. Psalm 5:3
  1. Believe that God has our nation’s best interest in mind and America is on His heart. God is not a distant supervisor of creation who is just waiting for someone to break a rule and move in with a heavy hand. He is a Father who has a purpose for everything and desires to see us prosper with intentional design. He also knows what hinders us, and our nation, from prospering with life and wholeness. Righteousness exalts a nation; wickedness destroys it. Knowing that someone has our best interest in mind opens our heart to intimate dialogue and acting on His counsel. Proverbs 14:34
  1. Speak a blessing over Israel as you talk with Abba Father. Our Father is a Father to Israel and He says that He will bless those who bless Israel through whom He brought forth our Savior (Jesus). One of the greatest things we can do as a national family is to support the Father’s continued plans and purposes for the land of Israel and God’s covenant with that nation. It will pour out a blessing back on us as we do. Genesis 12:3
  1. Pray for our judges to judge with truth, justice, and what is right. Making the right decision isn’t always easy, but is necessary for corporate wholeness. Pray that God give them courage to defend truth that prospers the life and wellbeing of a nation. Psalm 89:14
  1. Pray for our conscience as a national family to be restored to love and the esteem of truth. God is love and God is truth. There is nothing more beautiful than a mind empowered with truth and inspired by love that moves with wisdom and leads with a sound mind. On the other hand, there is nothing more destructive than a mind driven by self that leads with lies and drives with confusion.  Hebrews 10:22

 Abba’s daughter

Shining the Light that heals nations

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Living as Abba’s Child Through Creativity

creative boy and girlAs God’s children, we are fashioned in His image—the image of the Creator. Laced into the incredible blueprint of our humanity are elements of the divine, one being creativity. We cannot create something from nothing like God, but the resources for creating something new from what already exists is limitless!

blogs.scientificamerican.com

blogs.scientificamerican.com

God, in His very essence, is a designer, inventor, builder, gardener, pottery maker, and so much more. He is the head of a family of creative children. Creativity itself has so many expressions, from inventions that provide ease with work, to artistic expression that provides beauty for the soul or even the release of grief, or humor that brings a smile to our face such as this dressed up doggy. Creativity includes the ability to build a project, a home, a city, design a weapon for protection, write a song, or even administrate an office where an administrator wisely puts things in functional design for optimal efficiency. These are all aspects of creativity that cause our lives and the world around us to flourish and prosper.

In creativity, right AND left-brain work together! Neuroscience has discovered that it is not just the right brain that creates, but both sides of the brain work together in creativity. Here is what one article says, “Creativity does not involve a single brain region or single side of the brain. Instead, the entire creative process – from preparation to incubation to illumination to verification – consists of many interacting cognitive processes (both conscious and unconscious) and emotions. Depending on the stage of the creative process, and what you’re actually attempting to create, different brain regions are recruited to handle the task. Importantly, many of these brain regions work as a team to get the job done, and many recruit structures from both the left and right side of the brain…Depending on the task, different brain networks will be recruited.” (http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/beautiful-minds/2013/08/19/the-real-neuroscience-of-creativity/)

As your Heavenly Father’s son or daughter, what does He want to create through you today that will cause you or your sphere of influence to prosper in a fresh way?

Here are 6 ways to help jump-start your creative flow:

  1. Ask the Holy Spirit to give you fresh ideas and awaken creativity within you.
  1. Take inventory of your gifts. What needs to “go to the next level” in development or expression? Write down some ways of what that can look like.
  1. What positive thought or desire occasionally crosses your mind that you haven’t yet engaged? Grab that thought and do it! Just start. Don’t worry about imperfection—learn and enjoy! You never know what might happen!
  1. My favorite way is to put on some “soaking” music and get into the presence of God. His presence is full of creative ideas and revelatory thoughts. Some of my favorite soaking music is Kimberly and Alberto Rivera.
  1. Go to a bookstore or library, or look online for what might inspire some creative idea. Pinterest is a great place to see what others are doing.
  1. Get with a friend and brainstorm—the synergy of two and talking about a topic can cause all kinds of ideas to surface.

 

Remember, creativity isn’t only about the fun of personal expression—it is a way of breathing life into something that encourages and empowers you and the world around you in myriad ways for prospering.

How about you? What are some ways that get your creative juices flowing?

What is your favorite music that relaxes you and moves you into intimately connecting with God, the most Creative One ever?

I am Abba’s daughter!

 

 

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The Gift of Choice

I woke up this morning with a powerful thought: today is a gift – a canvas of time on which I can paint whatever I want. Today is a gift and choices are the colors I use to create the color of my life.

I can paint my time with positive thoughts or with the dull gray of a gloomy mood. The choice is mine. I can splash it with the color of cultivating friendships or with the dark hues of isolation, of thinking altruistically or being introspective and myopic, or somewhere in-between. I get to choose. I can draw on this canvas a day of productive work or wastefulness, of creativeness or carelessness, of helping others or being envious and greedy… the possibilities are limitless.

Everyday is a gift from God, a canvas of time. What do you want to paint today?

pic by ehow.com

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