When we lose our joy, we lose our strength

When we lose our joy, we lose our strength

Someone recently reminded me that we can’t let our joy be robbed from us as believers. They went on to say, “that when we lose our joy, we lose our strength.” They are basically quoting Nehemiah 8:10 which says, “And do not be grieved, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.” This small, seemingly insignificant conversation was like a defibrillator to my spirit and it shocked me out of my self-pity and self-focus. It got me looking up again.

The presence of God is constant. He isn’t like some bad or broken WIFI that has intermittent signal. He lives inside every believer and we have consistent, constant and unrestricted access to him. This access doesn’t change daily, weekly or monthly. Once the Holy Spirit resides within us, He stays there. And we have access to all His strength, His fruit, His power, His leading, and His directing always.

Joy is a fruit of the Spirit (Gal 5:22-23). Joy is a part of His character and nature. This is consistent with what scripture tells us: Zephaniah 3:17 “The LORD your God is in your midst, A victorious warrior. He will exult over you with joy, He will be quiet in His love, He will rejoice over you with shouts of joy.”

Joyless Christianity is very dangerous. In Philippians 3:1 Paul reminds Christians, “Finally, my brothers (and sisters), rejoice in the Lord. To write these same things to you is no trouble to me and is safe for you.” Paul is clearly reminding Christians that rejoicing is a safeguard. To stay safe requires you to protect your joy. Lose your joy, and you lose your strength; you lose heart; you lose hope; and you weaken your spirit man. Any wonder then why the enemy will be intent on robbing you of your joy!

What do we do then when our joy is gone?

1)    Acknowledge that the enemy has robbed you of your joy. Doesn’t the Bible tell us that trouble, trials and tribulations will come to the Christian? It doesn’t mean you have failed or don’t have enough faith. If you believe that, you have walked into another enemy trap – condemnation. Life happens, things come against us and as human beings that can take a toll on us. But when we recognise this, when we see it’s not because of sin or rebellion (if it is, you need to repent and close that door), then we can rise up and fight our enemy. James 1:1-12 is a great explanation of the testing of our faith. Joylessness is a trial. Don’t question your salvation when you lose your joy but understand as a child of God you have an enemy intent on robbing, killing and destroying. Once you recognise it, you are half way there to correcting it.

2)    Go to Jesus and ask Him to restore your joy and to sustain you.    

Psalm 51:12 “Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me.” It’s human nature to pull away when in difficulty or in a crisis. We consistently withdraw from the one who has everything we need to overcome. He doesn’t withdraw from us. Run to Him; press into Him; draw near to Him and His promise is that He will restore His joy to you and He will sustain you.

3)    Find satisfaction in nothing else.                                                                                       

 If your soul is satisfied in Christ, you will rejoice in Christ. Take your eyes off Christ, put them on yourself, another, or your situation, and you will lose your joy. Joy is the barometer of your spiritual life. Jesus said in John 15:10-11, “If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love… These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.”  Please note, Jesus isn’t talking about happy emotion here, but rather about His joy in us. Joy must therefore be a bi-product of our salvation and not an emotion or feeling based on our circumstance or situation. Joy is a deep delight in the person of Jesus Christ! Joy is the foundation of our relationship with Christ and our obedience to Him.

Have you lost your joy? It’s urgent that you find it again and soon. Draw near to Christ, press into the One who gives you His joy; a joy that sustains and keep you. Draw on His power and His strength and you will find that you are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy (1 Pet 1:8-9). As you press into Him your joy will increase and unhappiness decrease.   

My prayer is that “the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope (and joy) by the power of the Holy Spirit” (Romans 15:13).  

Living with your Super Power

Living with your Super Power

I am sure like many children, you have had your imagination take you on amazing journeys; as you've read books, comics and seen movies about people with super powers. Over the years there have been movies made about Superman, Wonder Woman, Spider Man, Cat Woman and more recently The Avengers and Black Panther. These superhuman heroes can fly, shoot lasers from their eyes, and have super-powered abilities to breakthrough any obstacle.

I personally used to read loads of Marvel comics, lapping up all the stories of the men and women with different super powers. In my imagination I would often imagine myself as a person with a super power, especially when I was under discipline and sent to my room. I would wish that I had the ability to walk through walls so that I could get back outside and play with my friends. But sadly, I was left in my room having to deal with my anger, resentment, bad attitude and rebellion. And try as I might, no matter how much I tried to burn a hole through my mother’s retreating back as she left my room closing the door behind her, I just never was able to do it.

Even as an adult, especially as a young mother with kids, with so many things on my plate and so much expected of me, I would sometimes enter a little day dream of me having supernatural abilities to achieve everything I needed to! I am sure that many of you have wished for that as well? But, hang on a sec everyone, don't you know that you actually do have a Super Power?

If you have accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour, then you have been given an ‘anointing’ by the Holy One (1 John 2:20). That means that every believer has that power on them, in them and working through them every moment of every day. That ‘super power’ is the Holy Spirit given to us as a free gift from Jesus Christ to help us and empower us in our Christian living. It’s not earned, it’s freely given to those who want it.

That’s the start, Jesus! When we accept that He loved us so much that He did exactly what the Father asked of Him and died on a cross in our place. When we recognise that we are sinners in need of a Saviour and we accept Him as such, we become new people (John 3:16; 2 Cor 5:17). We become like Him. A little like the reporter Clark Kent who came out of the telephone booth as Super Man.

Jesus is our model, or the prototype, of who we should be most like. Jesus walked on water, he multiplied food, he healed the sick, raised the dead and cast out demons at every turn. He stood for truth, humility and justice! As a superhero, Jesus went around exposing the bad guys, rescuing people and he always saved the day. Jesus was a Super Hero; no one can deny it. Batman, Superman, The Hulk and even Spiderman are just characters created by the active imaginations of highly creative people; but Jesus was for real. No one thought him up. Jesus was a real person, an historical figure; he was and is a real Super Hero and he made a huge difference on planet earth. When he left, he realised that we couldn’t make it on our own. He realised that we needed power to go about living life as he had and doing what he did. But, it doesn’t stop there for us as believers, because Jesus said that we would do greater things than he did when the Holy Spirit comes upon us (John 14:12). The Holy Spirit is our supernatural power for life and for godliness.

That means you and I don’t have any excuses. Jesus left us with the power, the only true power, to live like him, to be like him and to do like him. Because the Holy Spirit has come upon us, no matter what life brings, we have that power to overcome; we have the resources to face anything. There is no obstacle or circumstance too big or too heavy for us to bear. Because of our ‘Super Power’, we can help others as he did. We can release His healing (body, mind, soul and spirit) and his life into situations. So, words like, “it’s too hard, I can’t, I give up, it’s hopeless, it can’t be done, I'm too weak, I don’t have what it takes etc” can never be in our vocabulary. These are all lies from our enemy, the devil. He never speaks truth and he never does good. So, don’t believe him!

If you and I can remember who Jesus is and what He has done for us, we can live in that power. If we truly understand whose we are - that we are now the true sons and daughters of the most High God; co-heirs with Christ (that means everything available to Him is available to us); we too can live powerfully victorious and overcoming lives. We have the only Super Power that matters - the precious Holy Spirit. And he is always powerfully at work on us, in us, and through us.

So how can we stay connected to that Super Power?

Be found in His presence. Sit with him daily. Soak him up. Be still before him. Wait in His presence so that you are literally and liberally saturated with this power.

Pray in the Spirit. Prayer in your own language is good but praying in tongues is another powerful way of making you more aware of your spirit and God’s Spirit. It is the “charger” for your spiritual walk. Plug in, stay plugged in, and be charged fully for each new day.

Listen for His voice. Don’t just talk, spend some time just listening for his voice. And then hear what he says to you. Be led by Him, keep in step with Him, always be obedient to Him. Obedience is a powerful tool.

Renew your Mind. Stop listening to the enemy’s view of you. It’s wrong; he always lies. When you settle your identity in Christ, then you will think differently. Study, meditate, train yourself in the Word and speak the Word. Keep the helmet of your salvation on your head guarding your mind.

Stay connected with other believers. Never neglect the "gathering of the saints". Together you and I are stronger.

So, let's live like we have a Super Power, because we do. And his name is the Holy Spirit.

Pressing into God and finding strength in your wilderness experience

Pressing into God and finding strength in your wilderness experience

“O God of my life, I’m lovesick for you in this weary wilderness. I thirst with the deepest longings to love you more, with cravings in my heart that can’t be described. Such yearning grips my soul for you, my God! I’m energized every time I enter your heavenly sanctuary to seek more of your power and drink in more of your glory. For your tender mercies mean more to me than life itself. How I love and praise you, God! Daily I will worship you passionately and with all my heart. My arms will wave to you like banners of praise. I overflow with praise when I come before you, for the anointing of your presence satisfies me like nothing else. You are such a rich banquet of pleasure to my soul. I lie awake each night thinking of you and reflecting on how you help me like a father. I sing through the night under your splendor-shadow, offering up to you my songs of delight and joy! With passion I pursue and cling to you. Because I feel your grip on my life, I keep my soul close to your heart.”

Psalm 63:1- 8 TPT

The context of this snapshot of David’s life is at a time where he is being pursued by Saul; hunted like a criminal, running for his life. He is homeless, displaced; a refugee. He’s desperately seeking a way out of a very dry, bleak and desolate wilderness. He’s hard pressed on all sides and knows what it’s like to be in dire need.

Now you and I may not be in an actual desert, but we know exactly how David is feeling at this moment. Because like me, you have experienced, or even now experiencing, a tough spiritual season. You know what it’s like to feel dry and desolate; like you are in a desert place spiritually. You know what it’s like to feel you are all alone, to be at your wits-end!

David is at that place. He is tired, and he is desperate. But instead of running away from God or blaming God; instead of shaking his fist at God, giving up or having a tantrum; David presses into God and finds strength to carry on until breakthrough and deliverance comes. Do you press into God when the going gets tough? Do you hunger and thirst for more of God during these moments? I would like to say I do, but there are times when I run in the opposite direction; withdraw from God and look at other things to help me through my wilderness moments. But even when I do, I always end up coming back to the one who has everything I need to get through my tough time – GOD!

In this account, we find David clinging to the only solution that would get him through those wilderness days. He made it quite clear that the answer to thirsty, dry and troubled lives, is God and God alone. So, what did David do in times of dryness and weariness? His answer and the solution are laid out for us in these eight verses of Psalm 63. So, when next you and I face a dry desert-like experience, let’s do the same. David did the following:

Crave and hunger for more of God. Be earnest in your search for God (vs.1) – he is with you even when it gets tough.

Thirst for God (vs.1) – drink from the unending fountain of who he is. He is all you need.

Press into the heavenly sanctuary to seek more of His power (vs.2)

Praise and worship God (vs.3,5) – even when you don’t feel like it. Thanksgiving creates the atmosphere for him to work in.

Lift your hands to God and reach out for Him (vs.4) This stance shows Him your desperate reliance upon Him.

Think and reflect upon God (vs.6) – when we know His nature we can trust Him. So, meditate on God and who He is. You let go when you truly know God.

Sing to God for joy (vs.7). This is a direct response to letting Go and letting God have ‘control’.

Passionately pursue and cling to God (vs.8). Continue to seek Him first and His Kingdom and then all these other things will be added to you (Matt 6:33).

During the times spent in the wilderness, David sought after and longed for more of God. He knew that God was the only one who could quench his thirst and sustain him as he walked through desert-times. He found encouragement and renewed courage in the time spent with his God. My hope is that we will do the same.

When next you face a dry desert time, ask yourself two questions:

What will my soul thirst for – over, above and beyond all else?

What will I long for when I find myself in a "wilderness"?

David is a great role model whenever we go through wilderness experiences. He clung to God until his breakthrough came. Can we do the same; where we’ll be found singing our songs of joy and delight?

Change - what to do with it?

Change - what to do with it?

April brings a change of season. A new season is always one full of new possibilities and new opportunities for growth. This means change needs to happen in us. When change comes, you have two choices: you can embrace it and make the adjustments or refuse it. The latter will prevent you moving into the new. It keeps you confined to an old skin, which Scripture reminds us, will burst when the new is applied (Matt 9:17). Unless we are willing to change, everything will be wasted.

Change is here to stay because it’s a part of life. Just ask your parents or your grandparents and they will tell you of the momentous changes that have happened in their lifetime.

 Change is the process of making something different to what it was before. Change is never easy! Some people avoid change, while others thrive on it. Change, however, is incredibly vulnerable. Change causes discomfort as we get outside of the known and familiar and go beyond the normal and the routine. The beauty of change though is that it causes us to grow, to mature, to move forward, and to learn something new.

Let’s take a look at the word “vulnerability” for a moment. Each of us is travelling along the road called ‘life’. In life things happen to us (good and bad) and we try make the best of what comes our way. As we face these experiences, we are provided with an incredible opportunity to grow, mature and develop.

But it’s in that moment of change that we are our most vulnerable. Vulnerability will cause us to do one of two things. Either, we choose to embrace the moment and we change; adjusting what needs to be adjusted, resulting in us kicking up a gear and accelerating into our new season. Or, we fight the moment, avoiding it with everything in us and we kick down; slowing down, losing traction, decelerating and ultimately losing ground. In many instances, we end up backsliding; remaining immature and spiritually disfigured; because that’s what happens when we remain in a ‘skin’ that no longer fits us. And so, the old is never better.

If we are to change, a few things will need to happen:

1.   We will need to fight fear and embrace courage. Let’s face it, change causes upheaval, anxiety and a fear of the unknown. We need to fight the negative and embrace the positive in change.

2.   We need to realise that changing, or refusing to embrace change, doesn’t only affect you; it affects everyone around you. It can have a positive or negative effect on those around you, depending on your response to it.  

3.   We need to embrace change realising that change is worth all the discomfort, vulnerability and pain that it may bring; because we always gain from it.

4.   We need to trust God in the midst of change. Acknowledging that God works all things for our good (Romans 8:28) and that He only means us good and not harm (Jer 29:11).

5.   Never think that you are finished with change, you aren’t; it’s a lifelong process of us being changed into the image of Jesus Christ. The process of being made mature and attaining to the fullness of Christ, never ends. But what an adventure it is! Phil 3: 12-16 (TPT) “12 I admit that I haven’t yet acquired the absolute fullness that I’m pursuing, but I run with passion into his abundance so that I may reach the purpose that Jesus Christ has called me to fulfil and wants me to discover. 13 I don’t depend on my own strength to accomplish this; however, I do have one compelling focus: I forget all of the past as I fasten my heart to the future instead. 14 I run straight for the divine invitation of reaching the heavenly goal and gaining the victory-prize through the anointing of Jesus. 15 So let all who are fully mature have this same passion, and if anyone is not yet gripped by these desires, God will reveal it to them. 16 And let us all advance together to reach this victory-prize, following one path with one passion.”

6.   All God-change is designed to take you to a new level and into a new season.

So, embrace change as quickly and as easily as you can. Someone once said that life is 10% of what happens to you and 90% of your response to it. So, embrace the change that God is working in you right now. Let go of the old and do whatever God requires of you. Only if your hands are open can you grasp something. So, let go and let God change you; you won’t regret it. God is at work, He is doing a new thing; embrace the change!

Faithfulness or Fruitfulness - which would you choose?

Faithfulness or Fruitfulness - which would you choose?

Faithfulness or fruitfulness – which would you choose?  What would you say is the more important of the two?

I read somewhere that, “God requires faithfulness, not fruitfulness.” I would have to say that is not true. The person who said that was perhaps uninformed or a little immature. I say this because I believe faithfulness is the pathway to fruitfulness. Faithfulness will always produce fruitfulness. You cannot have one without the other! The opposite of faithfulness is unfaithfulness and the opposite of fruitfulness is barrenness; both of which are to be avoided at all costs.

Faithfulness and fruitfulness are connected whether we like it or not; just as unfaithfulness and barrenness is. They work in tandem; as a partnership. They can never be separated. Faithfulness is part of our spiritual fruit as Christians. Hence, I say again, they are tied together. You can’t have one without the other. Faithfulness refers to character and fruitfulness is the evidence of that good character.

To be faithful basically means to do the right thing at the right time, whether you have an audience or not; and this is regardless of your situation or circumstance. Fruitfulness means bearing fruit; it means being fertile and productive. When we are faithful we will bear good fruit.

Which brings me to that wonderful passage in John 15: 1-8. In it we see a beautiful picture of fruitfulness linked to faithfulness.

In the Passion Translation it reads, “I am a true sprouting vine, and the farmer who tends the vine is my Father.  He cares for the branches connected to me by lifting and propping up the fruitless branches and pruning every fruitful branch to yield a greater harvest. The words I have spoken over you have already cleansed you. So, you must remain in life-union with me, for I remain in life-union with you. For as a branch severed from the vine will not bear fruit, so your life will be fruitless unless you live your life intimately joined to mine. I am the sprouting vine and you’re my branches. As you live in union with me as your source, fruitfulness will stream from within you—but when you live separated from me you are powerless.  If a person is separated from me, he is discarded; such branches are gathered up and thrown into the fire to be burned.  But if you live in life-union with me and if my words live powerfully within you—then you can ask whatever you desire, and it will be done.  When your lives bear abundant fruit, you demonstrate that you are my mature disciples who glorify my Father!”

What is Jesus teaching us here about faithfulness and fruitfulness?

·         We cannot have either without being in union with Him.  Fruitfulness is directly linked to our relationship and union with Christ. There must be a point, a moment of conversion, where we acknowledge our sin and receive Jesus as our Lord and your Savior.  

·         He is the true sprouting vine. Jesus is the truth – the only truth. Some might say there are other religions or self-help techniques that can give you a better life. And maybe there are some things that can help you live a better life, but what we need to focus on is the life here after – life after this world. What about eternity? What happens after this life? Only those who believe and abide in Jesus through salvation (union with Him) will live a glorious life after this one.

·         Remaining in Christ brings lasting change and transformation. Which means conversion, as important as it is, isn’t the only focus. It’s not how you start your “race” that matters, it’s how you finish it. Too many decide to follow Jesus and then the trials, troubles and disappointments of life spring up and choke the life of God out of them and they give up. Remaining means staying the course. It means moving from ‘convert’ to ‘true disciple’ of Christ. It means becoming like Him. That’s called discipleship – moving from immaturity to maturity. It’s not a passive thing! It means you and I need to ‘work’ in partnership with Christ in our transformation. I am not talking about working for our salvation; I am talking about partnering with God in our transformation. It’s about being changed from one degree of glory to the next as we become more like Jesus. That can only happen in relationship.            

So, how is your relationship with Jesus? Is it healthy? Is it strong? Is it growing as you tap into the sprouting, life-giving Vine? Is He your source? Are you working that relationship out? Love is spelt – TIME. Do you go to Him for advice, help, perspective, wisdom and guidance on everything? Are you becoming fruitful, displaying more of His fruit in your everyday life? You can only become like the one you truly know. If your answer is no, then perhaps the problem lies in the joining. Remember you are the branch and He is the Vine. A branch cannot grow or develop and produce fruit unattached from the life-giving source – the Vine.

·         Pruning by God is necessary for faithfulness and fruitfulness. Pruning is designed to bring about more fruit in your life. God isn’t content with just a little fruit or some fruit; he wants much fruit. He’s not content with occasional faithfulness or a little faithfulness; He wants absolute faithfulness. And so, he doesn’t just prune those areas in us that are barren or lifeless; he also takes healthy fruit bearing areas and prunes them, so they can be more fruitful.  He is committed to our growth, development and maturity. He is committed to seeing much more of Himself in each one of us.

I believe faithfulness produces fruitfulness. Fruitfulness is a by-product of our union with Jesus. It’s the evidence that we are becoming like Him. Both of these working together in us, releases a power-filled testimony to the glory of our Lord.

2018 is the year of unceasing fruitfulness! The condition to that promise is that we need to stay connected and planted and let the Divine Gardener do what He needs to do to ensure ongoing fruitfulness in us. He is so faithful to that task. Will you be faithful? Will you be fruitful? It’s up to you…

What is in your hand?

What is in your hand?

As I was pondering what to write for this blog, a question came to mind. I believe the question is from the Lord and He speaks it to every single one of us. He asks, “What is in your hand?”

I immediately went to read the scripture that this question comes from. It’s found in Exodus 4:1-17, but its verse 2 that the question comes to Moses and echoes out to you and me.

I feel prophetically God is asking, “What is in your hand?” And then asks if we will obediently and faithfully use those things to serve Him, His church and the city.

Perhaps, for some, it might mean letting go of something/s. For others, it might mean picking up new things. Maybe for someone else it simply means accepting your God-given call and living it out courageously; instead of running away or fighting that call. Once you have settled that, you will need to know how you can use these things to serve the Lord here at NBC and in Nelson.  He has called you and I for such a time as this, to live here in Nelson and to be a part of Nelson Bays Church, serving Him with whole-hearted devotion and with everything we have.

Yet, like Moses, you and I may require more confirmation or Holy Spirit prompting to let go of something/s or to pick up new things and live out our God-call. And so what does the snake, the leprosy and the blood (from Exodus chapter 4) mean for you and I as we work this all out?

Firstly, the snake! God takes the stick Moses has in his hand and turns it into a snake. He then tells Moses to pick up the snake by the tail. Moses obeys, but instead of biting him the snake turns back into a stick. What’s the lesson here? Our God-call requires total dependence upon God. Whom He calls, He anoints and equips. It’s not about us and its never us when we achieve success in living out His call. It’s all Him! And to successfully live out your God-call requires that you press into Him fully so that He can use you fully. We need Him, He doesn’t need us. He chooses to use us to achieve His purposes and reach this world. What a privilege!

Secondly, God tells Moses to place his hand under his cloak and bring it out, which he does. To his shock and horror his hand is full of leprosy. Having leprosy was a stigma you couldn’t run away from. You were isolated and rejected. In Moses’s day, lepers were sent outside the city to die. If you didn’t die, you came back with a part of your body missing. Now Moses has leprosy and he is afraid of even more rejection and isolation. But God tells him to put his hand back under his cloak and when he does, he pulls it out totally healed. What’s the lesson for us here? I believe that God wants us to remember that once we were sinners in need of a loving Saviour, and like us, many others in our city need to meet Him. I believe He is teaching us that no one is unclean or so sinful that we can’t reach out to them. I believe He wants us to lay down our prejudices and pre-conceived thinking about different sectors of society (and deal with our fear of contamination or our fear of a particular type of person); and He wants us to deal with any hidden racism or favouritism (we all have our preference of person we would rather spend time with). He is reminding us that we have a city full of people, like us and very different to us, on their way to an eternity without Him; unless we find the courage to let go of our issues and pick up His call to “Go and make disciples of ALL people.” And, all, means all. All people need Him! And you and I have the answer to that need, JESUS!

Thirdly, what about the blood? What’s the lesson for us? Blood was spilt so that we could be saved and brought into relationship with Jesus. To me, blood speaks about sacrifice! It speaks of paying the price to live out the call of God for our lives and not choosing convenience or comfort. The blood speaks to me about making every effort (blood, sweat and tears) to ensure that I stay the course. That I start strong this year and I finish strong. It means that I am disciplined (dying to self every moment of every day) and I spend time with the One who refreshes me, renews my strength, envisions me, and empowers me for every task He calls me to. That means I set a daily portion of my time to sit in His presence, reading the Word, praying, worshipping etc. It means I prioritise life group and church and say no to the things that will distract me from that. Whilst these things don’t make me a Christian, they make me an effective Christian because of all the encouragement and support I receive in those moments. As a result, I am better able to reflect Jesus to my city, to my co-workers, to my family and friends; and I am better equipped to share my faith with others.

I hope in 2018 you and I will respond to our God-call with renewed discipline and faithful obedience. I pray that at the end of this year it won’t be self-doubt, self-recriminations, disobedience, sin, growing anxiety or a sense of failure that defines us; but rather we will hear these beautiful words from heaven resounding loud and clear, “Well done! Well done my good and faithful son/daughter. You heard my call and you used what was in your hand faithfully and obediently for me. I am well pleased.”

Breakthrough - It's Coming!

Breakthrough - It's Coming!

Recently, I felt a shift happening in the spiritual realm. Nothing seen physically, but rather a deep feeling within me. I began to sense faith rising in me for things I thought were lost or forgotten.

On the 11th November, I felt the Lord give me two pictures. The first one was of an ice breaker. A ship that goes ahead of other ships to break open the ice and create a way for other ships to follow. The second picture was of a hammer slamming down on hard ground; resulting in the ground breaking open and new life, growth and fruitfulness coming about.

With these pictures I have felt a shift, a change happening. I felt God say He is releasing a breaker anointing at this moment in time and it is going to break open, break off and bring breakthrough for many who have for a long time been crying out for God’s deliverance. I see high walls coming down as the cannonball prayers of the saints break through. God has heard you and His breakthrough is near.  

For a long time, some of you have been experiencing bondage which keeps tripping you up. Others are experiencing financial blockages and hold ups, with little or no respite. For others there have been challenges and difficulties in relationships, be it in your marriages or in other relationships where unforgiveness has had a tight hold on you. For some this has been a long hard season. The enemy, for some time, has frustrated and delayed the Lord’s breakthrough (remember the account mentioned in Daniel chapter 10); but no more. Your breakthrough is coming!

A friend of mine, who I believe operates as a prophetess, recently posted a word on 15th November on Facebook. She was feeling a shift had happened in the spirit realm. The shift she felt came with a feeling of winds of change. She saw a gradual but steady breakthrough in the things people had been trusting for. She felt this in terms of nations, relationships and business opportunities.... She continued to say, “Look around you, change is imminent, a spark has happened, a crack in tough ground has opened. Receive it...”

She also felt that this was being worked out in some nations around the world, including Qatar and Zimbabwe. The breakthrough long hoped for was now happening. Change was stirring and was suddenly upon us.

I believe this is a word both for individual believers but also for the church. It hasn’t been by human design or intention that we here at NBC have over the last few months been looking at the great subject of Faith and of the Holy Spirit. This has been a God plan, as He stirs faith in us to believe for Heavenly manifestations of power to invade our lives and to bring about victory, fruitfulness, salvation, healing and deliverance.

This breaker anointing that is breaking through, breaking out and breaking off is releasing more courage and boldness than ever before. It’s releasing freedom and liberty over those who have been captive to things for far too long. Its breaking off restrictions, the things that hinder and the things that contain and limit. It’s breaking off smallness.

This breaker anointing is releasing the Glory of God. We will see more of Heaven breaking in through signs and wonders. We will see new mantles released over individuals and new doors of opportunities opened to churches around the world. There is a release of greater impact and effectiveness being released as time is short. Jesus is coming back!

This anointing is destroying yokes of bondage and removing burdens that have weighed down Christians for too long, causing them to be paralysed and unable to live in their God-given power and authority. There is a renewed hunger for more of His presence, more of His power and more intimacy with The Lord. It’s restoring the broken and bringing healing to many. This anointing is causing the River of God to flow like so many of us have longed for. A new wave of salvations is being released. The prodigals are returning and those trapped in the bondage of false religions are being freed even now.

There is a dam bursting forth as it breaks through the walls that have for too long contained and limited. The water is flooding and flowing everywhere. Everything is changing! Your breakthrough is here…

Have you heard the expression, "seeing is believing?"

Have you heard the expression, "seeing is believing?"

Have you ever heard the expression, “seeing is believing”? As believers we tend to shy away from that thinking, as it’s the exact opposite of faith. And so, for us, “believing is seeing”! That’s the part that faith plays in our lives – we need to believe for it before we see it. That’s why Paul exhorts us to “live by faith and not by sight” (2 Cor 5:7). Faith is the opposite of seeing. The moment you see it, you can’t have faith for it.                                                           

G. Campbell Morgan says, “Seeing is not believing; seeing is seeing. Believing is being confident without seeing”. That is the essence of faith! An example of that would be the Faith of the Centurion in Luke 7, where he says to Jesus, “Just say the word and my servant will be healed” (vs.7). He believed first and then saw the evidence of his faith (vs.10).

But for the unbeliever, seeing is indeed believing. When people see the power of God being manifest, it causes them to believe. We see umpteen examples of that being played out in Scripture. One of those is when Peter heals the crippled beggar in Acts 3. It says, “when the people saw him walking and praising God, they were filled with wonder and amazement at what had happened to him” (vs.10). Seeing the power of God manifest, caused many to believe (see Act 4:4).

It’s no different in today’s society. If we are going to see Nelson won for Jesus, it’s going to happen by ongoing demonstrations of the power of God! But that power isn’t going to just fall out the sky; that power is going to be released through God’s people (you and I). Believing for it is not enough, we’re going to have to step out and into it. We’re going to have to be intentional about it, believing that God wants to use us to demonstrate His power and advance His Kingdom. We have to believe that God has added us to His Church because He wants to use us in His supernatural plans and purposes. Where we would be those who are supernaturally natural and naturally supernatural.

Remember, God doesn’t call the equipped, He equips the called. Every believer is called to be a “competent minister of His grace” (2 Cor 3:6) – to do what Jesus was doing and even greater things (John 14:12). According to Scripture everyone is called to do the work of the ministry (Ephesians 4:12) and everyone has an anointing to do what they’ve been called to do (1 John 2:20;27). But we’ve got to believe that in order to see it. And once we believe this – that we’re called and anointed by God for the supernatural – then the world is going to see a release of God’s power that will cause them to believe!

Demonstrations of God’s power is always to get people’s attention – for them to fall on their knees and say, “surely God is amongst us” (1 Cor 14:25)!  Every outpouring of God’s presence and power is a sign that points people to Jesus! However, we don’t chase after “signs and wonders”, we chase after Jesus. Signs follow and accompany us; not us following them!  And so, we’re not looking for signs and wonders; but rather for Jesus to be known and exalted through signs, wonders and miracles. When Jesus healed the paralytic in Mark 2; it says, “This amazed everyone, and they glorified God, saying, ‘We have never seen anything like this!’”

The bible tells us that the same power that was available to Jesus (that was received at his baptism) is available to us. That’s why Jesus had to return to the Father, so the Holy Spirit could come, and enable us to do what Jesus had been doing. The promise is “You will receive power when the H/S comes upon you” (Act 1:8). It’s Jesus’ promise: Power will come upon you, if you want it and recognise your need for it.

Jesus wants to be glorified, and not only in the church, but through the church! He says, “You are my servant, Israel (put your name there), in whom I will display my splendour” (Isaiah49:3).  God wants to display his power and splendour through each one of us. However, if we will not arise and display the power of God, the church and the Kingdom will not advance! This is our time to “arise and shine” and we can “for our light has come and the glory of the Lord rises upon us” (Isaiah 60:1).