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I descended to a whole new low in my parenting a little while ago. In a moment of paternal virtue, I offered an expedition to a local pottery painting shop to my elementary-aged daughter, For a brief moment, I was indeed “Super Dad!” And then came my spectacular fall from grace.

Sitting at the table, working together with great artisanal dexterity on a new bowl for our dog, I literally fell asleep. Twenty minutes later I found myself with her coat around my shoulders (“Dad, I thought you might be cold”) and Olivia on my cell phone with my wife, asking for advice on how to wake me up. The pottery shop, crowded with kids and super moms, appeared to have gone very quiet. Perhaps it was an attempt to let me sleep?

My falling asleep at the (pottery) wheel was a wake-up call of another type. There is something terribly wrong here. There is a crazy kind of busyness in my life that is just not working! Where do I go with this problem? What does faith have to teach me?

Well, you can’t make the case that Jesus does not know what it is to work absurdly hard and be exhausted. In Luke chapter 4, we observe Jesus pulling an “all-nighter.” We are told that “When the sun was setting” (verse 40) people came to him for healing and then we are told “And when it was day, he departed…” (verse 42), the inference being that He had worked through the night. But by light of the dawn, Jesus stopped what he was going and went to a deserted place to pray. Not surprisingly, the crowds followed. At which point, Jesus ostensibly said to them, “No.” Luke records “…[the people] would have kept Him from leaving them, but He said to them, ‘I must preach the good news of the kingdom of God to the other towns as well; for I was sent for this purpose.’” (verse 42b-43). Jesus said “no” that morning to a lot of hurting people, who genuinely needed Him and who had, literally, followed Him into the desert for their healing.

Can we chalk Jesus’ “no” up to exhaustion? Here we see evidence that Jesus’ guidance was from His Father and not from circumstances alone. The Father evidently told Him, “It’s time to move on. I want you to go to Judea and preach there.” The Father said “No” so Jesus said “No.”

What would my life look if I got my guidance from my heavenly Father and not just from my circumstances, no matter how apparently urgent those circumstances appeared? What if Jesus’ rescue plan for me from my state of “crazy busyness” — has a lot to do with my learning to say “no” to a whole lot of good things so that I can be freed up to say “yes” to the most important things? If so, how would I know the difference?

In our crazy busy lives making time to reconnect with the Father will no doubt feel counterintuitive. Perhaps it feels like God has just added yet another to-do to your long list! But if we are to allow God to break the hold that “crazy busy” has over us, this is where we must start. We are invited to bring our unmanageable lives to the Father — and tell Him the truth about how we are doing. I fell asleep in a pottery painting shop with my eight-year old daughter! I confess the extent of my problem and my incapacity to fix it on my own! This step is humbling, but crucial. We must acknowledge before Him that we are powerless to throw off our crazy busy lives, that our own guidance system has crashed! This place of confession is where we start. If not, we are simply going to come back to the place where all we can do is try harder… which will bring us back to the same end, but in a deeper pit.

What will I discover in this place of reconnection and confession? Jesus clearly knew what exhaustion felt like. And He knows each one of us so well. He knows of what we are made and where our particular breaking point is. “For He knows our frame; He remembers that we are dust.” (Psalm 103:14). I was recently convicted by this verse from Psalm 127: “It is in vain that you rise up early and go late to rest, eating the bread of anxious toil...” So, what is the Lord’s response? To berate us?  The Psalm continues with His response, “…for He gives to His beloved sleep.” (Psalms 127:2). We expect condemnation, but what we find is mercy and compassion.

Jesus said, “Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” (Matthew 11:28-29). In other words, “I know you are weary. I know what got you here…I long for you to come to Me…And actually, if you will only ask Me, I will lift the burden of your self-propelled life and give you power to break the cycle of crazy-busyness.” He is the one who provides the strength and power to us in all our weakness.

How does He do that? This is the role of the Holy Spirit. Here is our capacity and power to say “no” to the good things so that we might partake in God’s best for us. The Holy Spirit supplies the power for us to live differently — the power to repent when we don’t live differently, the power to live changed lives. And all you have to do is ask. Do we imagine that God would demand some four-month silent retreat in a horsehair shirt, drinking only rain water, before deeming us worthy of the Holy Spirit? No, all we have to do is confess our inability to cease being crazy busy and just ask for His help. Jesus told us, “…how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him!” (Luke 11:13).

So, having acknowledged my own power to change and having asked for the Holy Spirit’s help, I have suddenly found the inspiration and conviction to put into effect what Olivia and I call “The Saturday Plan.” This means I get up early on Saturday morning and complete whatever is still to be done for leading or preaching at our worship services on Sunday and then the day belongs exclusively to Olivia! And I managed to stay awake for all of it! I owe all of this to the power of God to say “no” to a few good things so that I might break free of being crazy busy and live in the moment.

I confess that I have slipped a few times. Some days “crazy busy” has a pull that is stronger than a black hole. Still, the power of God is greater and I have begun to recognize a process of repentance, compassion, mercy and His power to overcome that counteracts this gravitational pull.

Pasted from:.crosswalk.com

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    • Prophets of God, Stand Up, and Don't Give in to the Spirit of Intimidation

      Yesterday as I sat with the Lord, I heard Him say, "Sound the alarm! A spirit of intimidation is coming against many of My prophets right now. Tell them to continue to stand and not give ear to this spirit of intimidation, but to be encouraged and know that they are now moving into a new land of inheritance."

      The Lord keeps speaking to me about how there is a battle over the prophets right now to "muzzle" them and "silence" in many different ways, but I hear the Spirit of the Lord saying "Now is the time to get up on your feet and speak!"

      For this spirit of intimidation is coming to cause you to cower, to cause you to shrink back and to cause you to bow beneath its taunts and lies. But stand strong, prophets of God; hold the stones of the Word of God in your hand and continue to hurl them in faith.

      This spirit of intimidation and fear is raising itself up like a Goliath because there is a crossing over taking place right now where you are moving into a new land of inheritance. I heard the Spirit of God whispering "So many things are about to change. So many things are about to change." and all around me, I could see the "landscape" changing.

      There is shifting, a positioning and transition that is taking place over many prophets right now. The Lord is leading you into new places, new opportunities, new realms and new places to decree the Word of the Lord, and the enemy knows how the glory of God is going to be displayed as He moves powerfully through you, so he is attempting to cause you to run into the caves like Elijah.

      Do not run. Do not withdraw. Stand! Stand! Stand! For I see the Lord has assigned more angelic hosts with you than ever before. The enemy is whispering his lies of danger and harm, but the Lord is decreeing His protection over you. You are overshadowed by Him as you make Him, the Most High, your dwelling place.

      The Lord showed me that Psalm 91 is very key for the body of Christ right now, but especially the prophets. This spirit of fear and intimidation is doing all it can with its lies and foreboding to see you move from a place of rest and confidence in the Lord to a place of anxiety and fear to hinder your intimacy, cloud your vision and steal your clarity. No more!

      In this vision, as I saw the landscape change, I saw Jesus standing in the midst of this new landscape with a huge smile on His face, and He looked at the prophets of His heart and spoke: "You shall know My peace, My rest and My empowerment like a tidal wave in this new land of inheritance. For what I am calling you to and positioning you into is bigger than you have imagined and the spirit of intimidation would seek to cause you to withdraw, but I say unto you that greater shall the demonstration of My power be through you. Greater shall the demonstration of My goodness, My kindness and the power of My spoken Word. This spirit of intimidation would seek to keep you hidden, where this is the time where I am positioning you to shine and reflect Me brighter than ever before."

      Embracing the Fire; Releasing My Power

      The Lord showed me that many prophets have been in intense fire, and it is not something to think of as strange. For there have been fires of opposition, but there have also been fires of purification that the Lord is releasing to prepare you for the new land of inheritance that He has for you. It's a new land of destiny and a new land of partnering with Him and all that is yours in Christ.

      The fire has been hot, but in the embracing of the fire of the Lord, there is a deep maturing, preparation and strengthening that is taking place within you. The Lord's heart is for you to flourish in this new land, and the Lord has been working deeply in the hearts and souls of His prophets in this season to bring to the surface things that would hinder and hold you back. The Lord has been inviting the prophets to embrace the fire and allow the Spirit of God to do whatever He needs to do to prepare you for this new land of inheritance. Embrace His fire to purify and prepare you.

      The fires of opposition have been turned up seven times stronger, but the Lord is encouraging you to look not at the fires of opposition, but to look at Him. In the fire of opposition, He is strengthening you and deepening your trust in Him and His protection and what He speaks, so you are unaffected by the wind, waves and large flames that surround you. I continue to hear the Spirit of God decreeing over and over "You will not be harmed. You will not be touched. Stay close to Me and abide in My Word, for the lies of the enemy are poisonous darts sent to attempt to extinguish your faith, hinder your movement and bring confusion upon you. You will not withdraw, you will move forward in greater boldness because of the empowerment of My Spirit."

      "At that moment the earth shook beneath them, causing the building they were in to tremble. Each one of them was filled with the Holy Spirit, and they proclaimed the word of God with unrestrained boldness" (Acts 4:31, TPT).

      The Lord showed me that in this new era we have entered as the body of Christ, the prophets of God are going to begin moving in the power of the Spirit like Elijah and Elisha. There is going to be a significant increase of the power of God displayed through the prophets and the spoken word of the Lord through them, the decree of God to release creative miracles, bringing sudden shifts, alignments and breakthroughs. This is why the spirit of intimidation is attempting to silence you.

      I kept hearing the Lord say "My prophets are going to move in greater resurrection power! There will be powerful demonstrations of My resurrection power through My prophets in this season. Dry bones, bodies, dry and dead places suddenly coming to life by My resurrection power that is released through the decree that will flow out of the mouths of My prophets. In this new era, I am increasing the display and demonstration of My resurrection power especially through the prophets, and this is why the spirit of intimidation has come to attempt to silence My prophets and cause them to withdraw and go into hiding in fear, so they do not move further into this place of carrying My resurrection power like never before.

      "But I decree today, that this spirit of intimidation will flee as the power of My Spirit comes now upon My prophets and brings a shaking and shakes off the fear, the lies of death, the foreboding, the darkness and infuses them with strength and boldness."

      "Prophets of My heart, in this new land of inheritance, awaits you a new level of boldness and faith in the power of My spoken Word, My protection and My fire. Arise! Arise! Arise and do not fear. For I am with you, I go with you and I go before you. Shake off the fear by the decree of My Word and know that the land of inheritance awaiting you is filled with greater joy in partnering with Me to see My glory and kingdom displayed. There has been great pressing, but my prophets, you will now carry new wine and power in Me."

      It's time. It's time for you to arise. Stand! Stand! Stand! For a new land of inheritance awaits you, and you will be left in awe and wonder of the signs, wonders, miracles and major displays of My power that will manifest at the 

      "My prophets I am inviting you in the library of heaven to read and see the new blueprint decrees of My heart over cities and nations in this new era. For I will show you with greater accuracy and clarity the decrees of My heart over cities and nations that will set them alight with the fire of My love and see My glory and power displayed. For I decree as you seek My heart, seeking not your own agenda or name in lights, but truly seek to know My heart, I am now releasing greater secrets of blueprint decrees of wisdom and revelation for cities and nations to bring major transformation by the power of My Spirit. For I am moving those who are seeking My heart, My prophets who are in the secret place to hear My heart into greater increase and manifestation of their governmental authority. The enemy is fighting this, but he will not prevail. For I decree that you, My prophets will decree the blueprint decrees over cities and nations that will suddenly expose the works of darkness and bring significant breakthrough, shifts and demonstrations of My truth and glory that will bring monumental shifts. It's time!"

      "You are not defeated, My prophets, you are victorious in Me, and you will see my manifested victory in and through your lives like never before. Don't give in to this spirit of intimidation, it's come to steal, but before you is not the lies that this spirit speaks, but life, increase and a major increase of seeing My power moving through you as you decree My Word. Stand!

       

      Culled : Charisma Magazine

      Lana Vawser
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