Racing to the top as fast as I can without slipping. To my right I become aware of another parallel ladder. Angels are ascending and descending on it – one of them pauses when he sees me and hollers across
“Where ya goin’?”
“I’m goin’ to see Jesus!” is the answer that pops out of my mouth. It’s news to me as much as it is to the angel – I only found the ladder moments before.
I reach the top of the ladder and emerge into a bright, white room.
Jesus is waiting for me, seated at a white table. There is a vacant seat opposite and He motions for me to sit.
We each have a coffee and for a few moments, we sip in silence.
“What’s this about?” is my unspoken thought.
Jesus answers me aloud “It doesn’t have to be about anything. It’s just two friends, enjoying each others company”
I notice a two-fingered chocolate biscuit on the table between us. Jesus picks it up and removes the scarlet wrapper.
“Is He going to share that?” I wonder.
Grinning, He snaps the two chocolate fingers apart, then leans across the table to offer me one.
I hear myself say “Ooh, chocolate is my favourite”
That sounds slightly mad now that I typed it “out loud” – but it’s true. You were created to recreate. To bring forth things into the world that only you can bring.
The thing is though, that often the process of birth is glossed over. We don’t talk about the realities of childbirth, especially around expectant mothers and fathers, for fear of scaring them. I have always thought this is rather a short-term measure because eventually, they are going to be faced with the reality of the birth scenario and if they go into it unprepared, it is much more likely to scare them.
The same is often true in church. We like to talk about the promises of God, and our specific prophetic words we have received. We like to prophesy “wow” words over each other and get excited. I have never heard much talk about the birth process though. The hard work, nitty-gritty of actually taking what God has said to you, and beginning to walk it out.
I remember going to birthing classes when we were pregnant with our second daughter (I had a hard time with the first so we went for a refresher)
They showed a video of a woman giving birth. The expressions on her face were something close to one who has indigestion – I almost got in trouble for laughing.
Obviously this lady in the film had a very easy time of it – but that certainly isn’t typical.
I was amused but also a little annoyed on behalf of the first timers in the group.
This was hardly preparing them for the realities of the big day.
Here’s what I tell young women now – including my own teenage daughters. Giving birth is the hardest, most painful thing you will ever do. It is also the most beautiful, satisfying and rewarding thing you will ever do. The pain serves a purpose – it binds you to the result. Who would lightly give up on something they had invested so much in to see become reality?
There are many believers who are pregnant in the spirit right now. Myself included.
It’s time to pack that overnight bag, decorate the nursery and prepare for the hardest work you have ever done to see that promise come into the world.
Sitting on your backside is no longer an option. You may have had prophetic words stretching back years about this, or it may be a fairly recent thing – all I know is, that for many of us -the baby is coming and you need to PUSH to bring it forth quickly.
Sure it’s going to hurt. Sure it’s going to be tiring, and it will probably turn your world upside down when it arrives -but it’s also going to be amazing. Start rolling your sleeves up and actually doing those things that God has spoken – even if you can only take a small step toward it – do it. Take that class, make that call, apply for the job – whatever you can do to cooperate with what God has spoken about your destiny.
You were born for this – time to birth what you were born for. The world is waiting.
It has been a long time since I looked through my paper journals. I have been writing notes and thoughts in Evernote for several years now, so my paper journals have been sitting in a box, pretty much forgotten.
Of course, many things that God has said and done over the years are indelibly etched on my memory and in my heart – just as parts of your journey are in yours – but some things, those little things that don’t really make sense at the time – get overlooked and disappear in the mists of our recollections.
So it was with me, until recently – when I joined a writing group on Facebook and together we all joined in with NaNoWriMo.
For those who (like me) have never heard of NaNoWriMo – it stands for “National Novel Writing Month” (I think?!) – anyway the premise is that for the thirty days of November you aim to write something every day – the ideal goal being 50,000 words in a month.
I’m not writing a novel but I do have several other projects and books in the pipeline, so I joined in. It can’t hurt.
I had planned as part of the challenge to go through my old paper journals and type up dreams, visions and other useful insights from my journey into Evernote – partly so I could then share some of them, partly so that I would have them in a more accessible/searchable format.
What happened over the first few days was not what I envisaged from the exercise at all.
As I flipped through the journals and typed up the useful parts, there were so many encouragements in there for right now, I was quite overwhelmed at times.
One particular entry jumped out at me from the pages of a journal that dates back to 2009.
“Woke early, after a dream in which I was recording some sort of message involving scripture references. the feeling was that it was for people in a school of some sort”
Now, in 2009 I was still terrified of public speaking, and public ministry wasn’t really something I had any leaning towards. Yet God, in His wisdom, kept prodding me like this.
I had completely forgotten about this dream, which was nothing short of confusing at the time. Yet there it was, staring back at me – in my own handwriting.
I looked at the date, and the place I was at when I wrote this entry – and that’s when I nearly fell off my chair.
This dream and journal entry happened when I was in the West Midlands, attending a Conference in Dudley
I was staying in a hotel called The Saltwells Inn
The date was Saturday 29th November 2009.
Skip forward seven years to this weekend. I mean exactly seven years worth of weekends (I counted). I have just spent the weekend, in the West Midlands, teaching a “Healing Ministry for Beginners” workshop in Old Hill. That’s literally just around the corner from where I was when I had the dream.
We were recording the sessions ready for our online workshops (none of which was really planned by me – it just sort of “happened”) – AND – here’s the clincher.
We decided to stay at The Saltwells Inn. My husband came with me on this trip so I booked a double room. When we arrived there had been a mix up and they switched us to a twin room.
Guess which room we were in?
The same room I was when I dreamed it.
God doesn’t do accidents, and I got the point!
I want to encourage you today to do two things:
1. Start a Journal (If you don’t already)
2. Write things down in it even if they seem completely mad – with the date and location.
One last thing – if you are aware of things God has said to you that don’t seem to be happening – don’t lose heart. It took seven years from that dream, to fruition. That’s a long time – but God knew that when He showed it to me. He knows the times and places you should be. He is working in you and with you to bring you to that point in time that He has already planned, and shown you a snapshot of.
All you have to do is cooperate – and be ready to GO when the time comes.
When Moses encountered God in the burning bush, he was running away. He made a mistake and had then run away in fear.
Reading through Moses’ story in Exodus, the Lord highlighted to me that it was Moses’ passion to see his people, the Israelites free that had led him into an act of anger. That passion was placed there by God – but Moses acted out prematurely and tried to make a start in his own strength – resulting in disaster and the loss of a life.
“ Now it came about in those days, when Moses had grown up, that he went out to his brethren and looked on their hard labors; and he saw an Egyptian beating a Hebrew, one of his brethren. So he looked this way and that, and when he saw there was no one around, he struck down the Egyptian and hid him in the sand. He went out the next day, and behold, two Hebrews were fighting with each other; and he said to the offender, “Why are you striking your companion?” But he said, “Who made you a prince or a judge over us? Are you intending to kill me as you killed the Egyptian?” Then Moses was afraid and said, “Surely the matter has become known.” – Exodus 2:11-14
At the time of his offence, Moses was unaware of the call of God on His life.
Your mistakes will never define your destiny
There are many in the body who have passions and callings placed on their lives by God. (That burning desire that won’t go away? That’s a clue to what God is calling you to do. ) There’s a timing issue however and the Lord showed me that this is a time when He is going to encounter many who have made mistakes born of their passion for people, and passion for what is right – and then withdrawn into hiding. Just as He did with Moses He is going to come when you least expect Him and launch you into your purpose in Him.
You may have run from mistakes, but know this:
Your mistakes will never define your destiny, says the Lord.
You may feel like you have lost influence that God gave you. Moses had gone from being treated as a Prince, with all the privilege and authority that goes with it – to being a shepherd. As demotions go, it was fairly spectacular!
Moses ran away and built a new life, married and started a family – presumably he thought that was his life mapped out. But God had not forgotten Moses. Then there he was one day, doing his job, tending the sheep – and God decided to show up in a burning bush. The thing we often overlook though, is that the scripture tells us that it was only when God knew He had Moses’ attention that He spoke.
“Now Moses was pasturing the flock of Jethro his father-in-law, the priest of Midian; and he led the flock to the west side of the wilderness and came to Horeb, the mountain of God. The angel of the Lord appeared to him in a blazing fire from the midst of a bush; and he looked, and behold, the bush was burning with fire, yet the bush was not consumed. So Moses said, “I must turn aside now and see this marvelous sight, why the bush is not burned up.” When the Lord saw that he turned aside to look, God called to him from the midst of the bush and said, “Moses, Moses!” And he said, “Here I am.” Exodus 3:1-4
God only called Moses by name after he took the time to stop and look. I would imagine that a bush being on fire is probably not that unusual in that part of the world. What was unusual is that it didn’t burn up… the bush remained intact – but in order to see that you would have to turn your attention to watch for a few minutes.
Be ready to turn your attention to unusual events.
Just like Moses, God hasn’t forgotten you either – be ready for a reassignment. Be ready to turn aside from what you are doing and look. God wants your attention, and when He has it He will call your name and give you His strategy, your instructions for your next season of walking in all that He has called you to.
I stumbled across a post from a a friend of mine recently that suggests prophesying to your future self. The idea is that you pick a date few weeks ahead and ask God to speak to you about it, then record what you hear on your calendar , as a reminder on your phone or whatever. It’s a neat way of developing your relationship with God and ability to hear His voice. I have done exercises like this before and they never felt right – but this one does.
Because its relational.
Before I was saved I was caught up in trying to know the future – reading horoscopes and so on – and it’s easy when we become Christians to just exchange one brand of fortune telling for another. To just start listening to prophetic ministry and tell ourselves it’s ok because it’s Christian – but without a heart change on our part, we have just swapped one brand of reliance for another. I have nothing against prophetic ministry of course – the issue is our heart attitude when we seek it out. Prophetic ministry is not about WHAT lies in the future – it’s about WHO is there – before you even think about tomorrow – He’s way ahead of you.
Prophesy is about speaking into our futures. Encouraging us into the tomorrow that He already planned for us and knows every detail of. Not telling us what is going to happen so much as WHO is going to help us handle it, and what He sees us doing when we get there. It’s about going back to the future, if you will – seeing what lies ahead through the lens of what Jesus already achieved on the cross, and what He has already done in your life to date – knowing that we are known intimately by the one who holds the future in the palm of His hand.
You can read about the idea of prophesying to yourself on my friend Seneca Schurbon’s site,here.
“I am the God of the unnecessary.
Don’t settle for “getting by”
Don’t settle for “just enough”
I want to bless you beyond your ideas of what blessing is.
Don’t settle in the wilderness , with just enough to meet each day’s needs – that was just for a season – my plan has always been to take you into the land of milk and honey.
I am the God of abundance – the God of the unnecessary.”
I believe many of us have allowed circumstance to rob us of our expectation. A poverty mindset may even have taken root and we have a hard time believing that God would bless us beyond a certain level, either spiritually or in the natural realm.
We have have got so used to “getting by” that we simply have no expectation of anything other than enough. The thought is “why would God do that, it would be unnecessary”
God says : “Yes it is unnecessary- but I’m going to do it anyway”
Challenge: raise your expectations of what God will do for you over the next few weeks – and get ready to receive!
I would like to preface this word by saying that I DO NOT believe this is a literal word prophesying a natural disaster. God is not in the habit of scaring His people, and neither am I. I do believe though that sometimes natural events mirror those in the spirit realm, and God uses this to draw our attention to what He wants us to see. Hence perhaps the correspondence to recent weather events in the UK.
On the 8th December 2015 I had a very vivid dream.
I was back in Kent (where I was born) in a road known locally as “The Avenue”.
This road leads for about a mile or so all the way down to the sea.
As I watched, a huge body of water rose and engulfed the land. People, caught unaware, were running as fast as they could to escape the water. As they ran, my attention was drawn to the fact that they were dropping hamburgers. Hundreds of hamburgers littered the ground.
My instinct was to try to help the people but I knew it was useless so my husband and I also headed inland.
We ended up at a railway bridge, and had to wait at a crossing because a train was coming through. There were some young people also waiting and one of them was making flippant remarks about the floods. I told him that people had died in those floods, and the same was happening in NEW YORK as well.
When the train arrived, it was an old fashioned steam train. It pulled into a siding, onto a turntable, was turned around and headed back the other way.
Holy Spirit tidal wave
I believe this dream speaks of a move of Holy Spirit that is going to start in various locations, globally – Kent being the one for which I have a voice.
“For the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the LORD, As the waters cover the sea. – Habakkuk 2:14
The glory of the Lord is already present in all the earth – the earth waits to be filled with the KNOWLEDGE of the Glory of the Lord – as the waters cover the sea.
Holy Spirit is going to crash in on people’s lives, and as He does this, many will drop the “fast food”, microwave spirituality that has held them back. The cultural norm these days is for high speed, fast gratification and this has hampered our ability and willingness to pursue answers, and God’s presence.
Hamburgers being discarded
Fast food is pre-made, pre-packaged, and largely artificial. It is prepared for you and requires little to no effort on your part to obtain it. It delivers a temporary feeling of satisfaction but no lasting relief from hunger – and very little nourishment for the body.
I believe that this is true of much of what we have come to regard as normal in the church. We have settled for a “quick fix”, rather than take the time to enjoy a nourishing meal.
Accepting established answers,prepared for us by others – rather than seek them out in the scriptures for ourselves.
When we fully comprehend God’s wonder and the completeness of His work in Christ – we will lose all interest in the quick fix junk food spirituality we were once so keen to gorge ourselves on.
Many will die
The statement about lots of people dying is of course, not literal! When Holy Spirit really touches a life, the person will die to self. This is a death to self effort, as we realise that God can do (and already has done!) – what we cannot – bring us to a state of righteousness in Christ.
A change of direction
The steam train, I believe, represents the old, established ways of doing things, and perhaps even whole established churches and ministries. As they meet with this deluge in the Spirit, they will turn around and head back the other way.
This represents repentance – not necessarily from sin – the true meaning of repentance means “to change your mind, and change direction”. I see a change of direction from the old, established ways of doing church.
So get ready.
Ready to drop things that you may have found enjoyable. Ready to let go of established answers and seek out truth for yourself in scripture.
Ready to drop the familiar, and the “normal” – and embrace the new direction in which God would have us all move. Together.
Anyone who knows me, will know I have a tendency to talk. Way too much talking.
(Pause for a moment and pray for my husband, If you would)
There was a time, however, when I was unable to speak for 14 hours or so.
Hubby remembers it fondly.
The story begins at Bath City Church, at a conference in late 2008 – about three months before our kids were healed. The conference title was “Revival Britain” and many had gathered expectantly to hear some well known voices share on the subject.
At the end of the conference on a Saturday night, an altar call was given for those who wished to give their lives for the purpose of revival coming once again to these shores.
A large number of folk stood, including me. The speaker said “This isn’t something to be done lightly. This is serious business and your life may not be the same after this”
At this point, a good half of those who had stood, sat down again, and the rest – including me, went down to the front.
I stood in line waiting for the minister to get to me, fully expecting that when I was prayed for I would be pinned to the ceiling, blown across the room… you know, like in those cool stories you hear people tell.
The moment came, and went – nothing. As the minister moved on there was a moment where I felt dissapointed – it was all a bit of a damp squib really.
Let the weeping begin..
Seconds later, however, I was overcome by an enormous wave of what I can only describe as grief, and fell to the floor. This had never happened to me before – it was like I was crying God’s tears. I wept bitterly and found myself unable to move for a while.
Eventually I pulled myself together and returned to my seat, where my husband Peter was waiting. We were staying with friends nearby and so remained in our seats whilst we waited for them to be ready to leave. After a few minutes my husband asked me something, – and I found that I was unable to answer him.
I found a piece of scrap paper from my handbag, and wrote on it
“I’m so sorry, but I don’t seem to be able to speak”
Peter has a rather dry wit – he took the pen from me and wrote underneath – “PRAISE GOD!”
I remained unable to speak as we returned home with our friends, and into the next day – around 14 hours (although I was asleep for some of that time).
In the morning, when I was alone, I found that I could pray out loud, but not speak to anyone else. I asked God why and He said “You talk too much – you need to learn to listen more.” When I asked him when I would be able to speak again (my mind was wandering to how on earth I would manage the children if I couldn’t speak!) He responded
“When I have something to say”
It was a Sunday and we were invited to attend church with our friends. It was a little awkward before the service as I couldn’t talk to anyone, but folk seemed fairly accepting when my friends explained.
The meeting began and the speaker suddenly said “We don’t normally do this but I felt like we should today. I’m going to hand the microphone around the room if you have something you would like to share”
My heart was in my mouth, and my hand in the air, almost simultaneously! Understand that at this point in my life I had NEVER spoken in public before and was very nervous about it – and add to that the uncertainty of whether I would actually be able to say anything – you get the idea!
As the microphone reached me I opened my mouth, and to my relief, my voice worked.
I shared about my experience the previous night and that God had said “You talk too much, you need to listen more”; and I felt that He was talking not just to me, but to the wider church.
Was that my first prophetic word? I really don’t know – but I do know that it was life changing, for me at least.
I still talk way too much, and don’t listen nearly enough – but now and again, in the still moments, God reminds me of those few hours in 2008, and gently prompts me to listen…
On 6th September I had two dreams, which I believe convey a significant message for the church as a whole.
In the first dream I was sitting in a car, in between the house I grew up in, and my neighbours’ house. The neighbours’ house looked as it did when I was a young child.
In the dream I had just learned of my neighbour’s death (He actually passed away a number of years ago).
I was quite upset by this news, and I was sitting in the car weeping – I then became aware of a man sitting next to me – he looked like my neighbour – but it wasn’t a ghost – and he was comforting me.
In the second dream was inside a house I don’t recognise, and I was holding a young baby. Although the child was very small he was very developed and making full eye contact, communicating etc in the way a much older child would. At one point the baby escaped from my care and urinated all over a carpet! I was trying to clean that up, and in the process I found some plants that had been neglected and needed care. A man then came to speak with me and was showing me how to graft one part of a plant onto another, to strengthen it and help in the recovery of both.
There are a number of symbols in this dream:
My neighbour was an artist, with work in the Tate gallery – I actually studied his work when I was at school.
My childhood home has long been used by God in my dream life as a metaphor for the Church.
I was sitting in a car – in between the two buildings. This represents a small ministry, outside of established structures.
The baby in the second dream of course represents new life.
The plants – the man was showing me how to restore life to both plants by joining them together. This speaks of what God is going to do in the church in the coming days. More on this below.
Restoration of Gifts
I believe God is saying that the church as a whole, and individuals, have been grieving over giftings that we have lost – but actually they were lost (dead) some time ago and we just didn’t realise it. He is restoring those gifts in a new way. They are coming back to the broader church – but not necessarily in traditional settings. (I was sitting in the car in between the two buildings).
The baby in the second dream was well developed but small – so small ministries will birth well developed, supernatural gifts. As we begin to operate in them, they could “get away from us” – and this may make a mess – but the overall result will be new life, as small areas of growth are “grafted together” and support one another -this is what the plants represented.
God is redistributing giftings (both the gifts of the spirit, and I believe, the artistic expression of them) to the broader church, and specifically new expressions of church.
There are many believers around the world who have increasingly found themselves outside of traditional settings for a variety of reasons – but the root cause is the same – God is transitioning many of us into new situations and places, and the things that we may have grieved the loss of – are actually coming with us on the ride! God has not forgotten your calling, the things He has said to you about your role in His plans. Expect a rediscovery of those spiritual gifts you had once operated in but have lain dormant for a while, and perhaps the birth of new ones – and as the well developed baby indicates – this isn’t going to be a slow, drawn out thing.
Mrs. Rabbit: What did your father tell you this morning?
Thumper: If you can’t say something nice… don’t say nothing at all.
God has had me doing “revision” recently – reminding me of lessons I learned in the past.
In particular, He has been reminding me of the power of my tongue, – both creative – and destructive.
Like Thumper the rabbit, it seems – I need reminding of what my Father has said.
I was reading Luke’s gospel the other day and I noticed something. Chapter one opens with the angel appearing to Zacharias in the temple and telling him that his wife is going to bear a child – John the Baptist.
“8 Now it happened that while he was performing his priestly service before God in the appointed order of his division, 9 according to the custom of the priestly office, he was chosen by lot to enter the temple of the Lord and burn incense. 10 And the whole multitude of the people were in prayer outside at the hour of the incense offering. 11 And an angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing to the right of the altar of incense. 12 Zacharias was troubled when he saw the angel, and fear gripped him. 13 But the angel said to him, “Do not be afraid, Zacharias, for your petition has been heard, and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you will give him the name John. 14 You will have joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth. 15 For he will be great in the sight of the Lord; and he will drink no wine or liquor, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit while yet in his mother’s womb. 16 And he will turn many of the sons of Israel back to the Lord their God. 17 It is he who will go as a forerunner before Him in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers back to the children, and the disobedient to the attitude of the righteous, so as to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.” – Luke 1:8-17
Woah! That’s some prophesy to receive! Zacharias’ response is both understandable and unbelievable at the same time (you might even say inconceivable?)
18 Zacharias said to the angel, “How will I know this for certain? For I am an old man and my wife is advanced in years.”
So on the one hand, you have an Angel turning up, right in front of you. On the other, you have a wife who is old and has always been unable to conceive a child. Tough moment.
19 The angel answered and said to him, “I am Gabriel, who stands in the presence of God, and I have been sent to speak to you and to bring you this good news.
Gabriel says, “I am an ANGEL. I turned up in your temple in plain sight and broad daylight to bring you a message – what more do you want?” He goes on to add something else,
20 And behold, you shall be silent and unable to speak until the day when these things take place, because you did not believe my words, which will be fulfilled in their proper time.”
Zacharias, the narrative tells us, was indeed silent until the time came, John was born and his name decided on. The moment Zacharias asked for a slate and wrote “His name is John” he was able to speak again.
So Zacharias was unable to speak for over nine months.
Because Zacharias was a priest, with authority, and he had expressed doubt about the prophecy of his son’s birth. Ordinarily, God gives us a choice on whether to co-operate with the prophetic in our lives, or not. This one, however, was just too big to leave to chance.
John the Baptist was too important to allow Zachariah the chance to inadvertantly use his tongue to mess things up -with statements like this – for example.
“Well, God said this was going to happen, but I dunno, really – Elizabeth’s old now and we tried for a baby for years..”
You know the kind of thing.
The moment Zacharias chose to be obedient in the naming of His son, however, God knew he was “back on board” and could be trusted with the power of speech once more.
The New Testament tells us that each of US is a priest.
“But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God’s own possession, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;” – 1 Peter 2:9 (emphasis mine)
How often do we receive a word for our lives, and then immediately look at all the reasons why not? Talk about why not? Pray about why not, even?
The power of life and death is in your tongue.
If you have prophetic words for your life, and it looks like nothing is happening – may I encourage you today, to speak positively about them? Even if it looks like there is nothing in the natural to suggest that progress is being made – choose to believe what God told you, not what you see with your natural eyes.
If you really can’t do that – then choose not to speak of it at all, and especially not in a negative way. “Do a Zacharias” – and remain silent until the child is born, and the day for naming it arrives.