Category Archives: Christian living

Prophesy in Sync with God’s Heart (Part 2)

In our last post, we talked about applying the love test to our prophetic words. God’s nature is love, so if our prophetic words fit the love criterion, we are doing well. Love by itself is not the whole picture, however.

Hearing God’s voice correctly also depends on becoming intimately acquainted with His nature in all its aspects — His holiness, justice, truth, mercy, faithfulness, and goodness, to name a few. He is our Redeemer, Healer, Restorer, Comforter, Deliverer, and Hope-Giver. While God is love, He is  also our Judge and Purifier.

How do we come to the place of understanding God’s nature so that it will influence our hearing and releasing of prophetic words?

We familiarize ourselves with God’s names in the Bible.

He deliberately reveals His nature through His names. Why? Because they help us to know Him. Here are just a few:

  • Faithful and True (Revelation 19:11)
  • Emmanuel, God with us (Matthew 1:23)
  • Refuge from the storm (Isaiah 25:4)
  • He Who is able to keep you from falling (Jude 24)
  • A high priest of good things to come (Hebrews 9:11)
  • God of hope (Romans 15:13)
  • My goodness (Psalm 144:2)
  • God of patience and consolation (Romans 15:5)

Study and meditate on His names to become better acquainted with His nature. I have a free list to help you get started and a book with even more names (and their Bible references) at my website.

We learn about His nature through His actions in the Bible.

His names often show up in the context of what was going on when He mentioned them. We see how He related to people back then, and it gives us confidence for what He will do in our day, too.

Absorb as much of the Bible as you possibly can. As you do, you will become more familiar with Who God is — how He thinks, acts, and speaks. I sometimes pray before reading my Bible, “Lord, put this living Word deep down inside of me, and let it birth Your life in me.”

Isaiah 55:8, 9 tells us, “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways, says the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.” I’ve often heard this Scripture misused to say we cannot possibly understand or think the thoughts of God, so we might as well forget even trying.

But the truth is, although God’s thinking is indeed higher than our natural reasoning, we can tap into His thoughts, conform to them, and begin to increasingly think like He does! If it were not so, why did the apostle Paul say, “We have the mind of Christ” (1 Corinthians 2:16), and“Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 2:5)? Accurate prophecy requires that  our thinking be pulled up higher, to come in line with His thinking.

We learn about His nature through His personal dealings with us.

As we gain experience of His faithfulness, we gain confidence that He can be trusted. I used to have a fear that God would tell me something good and then yank that promise away — sort of a bait and switch tactic. Looking back on it now, I see how foolish my mindset was. I have learned that the promises in His Word are true. I have seen Him bring me through dark times, when it looked like His promises had failed, into their fulfillment. The “failed” promises hadn’t failed at all. They were only delayed to a later date than my expectation dictated.

In our last post, I gave you four questions, revolving around our love motivation, for assessing whether a prophetic word is ready and appropriate to release to others.

Let’s add another question to the list: Is my prophetic word in harmony with God’s nature? If it can’t pass this test, something is off. It’s time to go back to the Lord for clarification.

Pursue understanding the Lord’s nature. As you grasp more fully Who He is and how He acts, what you hear (and how you release that word) will become a greater blessing to His people than ever before.

Part 1

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The Dream Book: A Practical Guide to Christian Dream Interpretation, by Lee Ann Rubsam

Rated 5-Stars at Readers’ Favorite! — See Review

 

nature of God

 

 

Before Whom We Stand: The Everyman’s Guide to the Nature of God, by Lee Ann Rubsam

 

 

names of God

 

 

The Names of God, by Lee Ann Rubsam

 

 

Seven Things Your Prayer Group Leader Wants You to Know

leadership frustrationAre you part of a prayer group? Do you sometimes feel frustrated with how things go? Today, I’m going to let you inside the head of a prayer group leader — me. While no two of us are exactly alike, we do share some common ground. I’m hoping some of the things I say will help you understand how your prayer leader ticks, so you can function at your best within your group. (Come to think of it, a lot of these points might apply to your pastor as well.)

1.) Each prayer group leader has a particular vision for his or her group. That vision will include which topics the group prays about and what the format for your gathering is. You may not like the emphasis or style. Give it a try anyway, and see if you can learn to flow with it. If you can’t, maybe another group would be a better fit for you.

Sometimes people join a group thinking it’s a democracy, where everyone’s input is on an equal footing. They try to remake the group into their vision of how things should go. While suggestions can be helpful (and good leaders listen to those), frequent “You should do it this way instead” comments aren’t usually appreciated because they don’t fit the overall goals of the leader of their group.

2.) Your leader can’t control everything that happens. In fact, it wouldn’t be great if leaders tried! Things can — and will — go wrong, because people are people. Sister Eunice might pray or say something goofy sometimes. You could, too. (And so could your leader!) Just let it go.

3.) Just because your leader doesn’t deal with inappropriate prayer or comments in the moment doesn’t mean he is oblivious to a problem. Trust him to take care of it. He probably will, but he plans to do it privately.

My husband and I have, on rare occasion, stopped something from happening in the moment. There were a few times we should have acted more quickly and didn’t. (Sorry, but we’re not perfect yet.) Most of the time, we let minor things go and allow the Lord to work on people’s maturity gradually. But if something is enough out of line or happens a lot, we really do deal with it behind the scenes. We want to avoid humiliating people and be as loving as possible. It’s a crazy balancing act between doing what is best for the individual and what is best for the group.

4.) Dueling prayer warriors are no fun for the rest of the group. Please avoid this behavior. Did Brother Bob just pray something you disagreed with? Even something really wacky? You don’t have to launch into an obvious comeback prayer to counteract his error. Diplomatically pray another side to the issue, yes. But argue with him via “prayer,” no.

God doesn’t get shook up over a prayer here and there which isn’t according to His mindset. (We all pray these at times.) He simply lets wrong prayers fall to the ground unanswered. And, contrary to what some have taught, occasional prayers not in agreement with His will do not end up as ammo in the devil’s hands. The enemy has not been given that authority.

So, when somebody prays something “off,” just grit your teeth and move on. Your prayer group leader has to do this more times than you will ever know.

5.) Prayer goes better for everyone if you stay sensitive to others in the group. This doesn’t mean you have to walk on eggshells, hoping never to offend anyone. It does mean some things are entirely appropriate to pray at home which it would be best not to bring into the group setting, because they could be unnecessarily divisive. It also means if you are charismatic, and you know you are praying with people who are not, it’s not a good idea to launch out into a message in tongues. Know your prayer partners and love them more than you love your freedom or theology.

6.) There will be good prayer meetings and ones which fall flat. This is normal. It’s not the end of the world to have an off week. Sometimes things flow effortlessly in the Spirit. Sometimes they don’t, and we power through it the best we can. God still hears our prayers on the weeks when we feel things are not clicking like they should. Have faith in His ability to cut through the mess and still use your group’s prayers for His glory.

7.)  Give your prayer group leader grace to grow, just as she tries to do with you. Leading prayer is not an easy job. Give your fellow prayer team members grace, too. We all need multiple second chances to get things right. Love covers a multitude of sins.

Are you a prayer group leader? Would you like to add some suggestions of your own? Please share in the comments!

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intercession

 

 

The Intercessor Manual

 

 

 

intercession handbook

 

 

Your Intercession Questions Answered

 

 

 

starting a prayer group

 

 

House of Prayer ~ House of Power

To Hope, or Not to Hope ….

It’s easy to lose our grasp on hope with all the turmoil going on these days. To make it even worse, prophets of doom are currently showing up in hordes, saying, “I dreamed,” or, “I saw,” — “and it is going to be really BAD.”  Each new revelation seems to be more sensationally awful than the last! Between what we can all see with our own eyes and what these prophets — accurate or not — are saying, many of the saints are becoming increasingly fearful and despairing. Some intercede from a place of panic; some run to stockpile food, guns, and ammo; some have just given up entirely. None of these responses are what God intends for His Church.

No matter whether fearful things are ahead or not (and yes, we most likely will go through more difficult days for a while), the Lord wants to fill His people with hope. Did you know that one of the names God gives Himself in the Bible is “The God of Hope”?

Take a look at Romans 15:13: “Now, may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Spirit.”

Because hope is part of God’s nature, He wants to impart it to us. The Holy Spirit dwells inside of us, so as we look to Him, we can be filled to overflowing with His hope-nature, which also leads to inner joy and peace.

But, what can we be hopeful about? Both our short- and long-term future. Our greatest hope lies in our eternal destiny to be with Jesus always. He wants us to take comfort in His promise that He will return for us. Savor His promises once again. We must not forget, minimize, or let go of them:

In My Father’s house are many mansions. If it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also.John 14:2, 3

For the Lord Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.1 Thessalonians 4:16, 17

“That where I am, you may be also.” “And so shall we ever be with the Lord.” These are some of my favorite words. They are our “blessed hope” (Titus 2:13). 1 Thessalonians 4:18 concludes, “So comfort one another with these words.”

The Rapture — Jesus’ return to catch us away, so that we can be always by His side — has come under great attack, even from within the Church. Don’t let scoffers steal your hope through their ignorance and unbelief. Your destiny is not bound to this earth alone, so don’t let them anchor  your attention too firmly on this world. Our greatest hope still lies in our eternal future.

Now, that said, God also wants us to have hope for our remaining time here on earth. We shouldn’t give up and think nothing good can happen until we are lifted out of here. Psalm 27: 13, 14 says, “I would have fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living. Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart….”

God knows that we need to see His goodness poured out upon us in this life. Do you need healing? Deliverance from some difficulty? Restoration of a relationship? Are you praying for loved ones to be saved? Do you desire to see your entire nation brought to God? Pray confidently for the answers you long for. “Ask, and you shall receive, that your joy may be full” (John 16:24).

This is not the time to give up on earth and do nothing while we wait for the Lord. Did He not say, “Occupy until I come” (Luke 19:13)? While we are here, the Lord asks that we pray, speak, and act as His ambassadors, expecting to make a difference for the better.

Let’s end with one more word on hope, from Psalm 42:5: “Why are you cast down, O my soul? And why are you disquieted within me? Hope in God, for I shall yet praise Him for the help [in Hebrew, Yeshuah] of His countenance.”

Keep secure hold of your hope. The all-powerful God is the source of it, and He will not disappoint you.

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names of God

 

The Names of God,
by Lee Ann Rubsam

 

 

 

KJV Bible encouragement

 

 

Encouragement from God’s Word,
by Lee Ann Rubsam

 

 

 

inner peace

 

 

All-Surpassing Peace in a Shaking World,
by Lee Ann Rubsam

 

 

Becoming the Friend of God

friend of GodI wrote a few posts ago about going through a severe illness this past winter and spring. While I  came through it well overall, I suffered a setback for several weeks this summer, where I felt pretty peaked. In spite of persevering in the oodles of healing promises in the Bible, and even though the Lord frequently assured me by His inner voice that I would be all right, there were times when feeling awful seemed way more real than His Word did. (How many of you can relate?)

In the middle of that struggle, the Lord reminded me of why He called Abraham His friend. It was because Abraham believed what God had said. James 2:23 tells us, “…Abraham believed God, and it was accredited to him for righteousness, and he was called the Friend of God.”

Genesis 15 records one of many conversations between Abraham and the Lord. God initiated it by saying, “Fear not, Abram. I am your shield and your exceedingly great reward.” Abraham responded by pouring out his disappointment over a deep lack in his life. He basically said, “But Lord, what is that to me, when You have not given me a child, the longing of my heart?” (vs. 1-3). I suspect he said it reverently, yet he laid it out on the table quite honestly.

You know, God has respect toward our end of the conversation. He listens to us. He acts on what we request, because He is good, and He loves us. He replied by promising Abraham many descendants, like the number of the stars of heaven. “And Abraham believed in the LORD, and He counted it to him for righteousness” (v. 6).

When we are friends with someone, we pay attention to what they say. We want to know what they are thinking. That’s to be expected with those we share an equal footing with, but how amazing it is that the limitless Creator and Potentate of the entire universe invites us to talk with Him, and that He regards what we say and pray!

As Abraham waited many long years for the son God had promised him, his faith had its ups and downs. Yet the Lord looked past his momentary stumbles to the overall trust Abraham placed in Him. It is the same with us. We may not be perfect every minute of every day in believing whatever God has spoken. But if we waver here and there, we can still pick up where we left off and renew our belief in the Lord and in His faithfulness to His Word. He sees the big picture.

So, in my situation, I committed with fresh determination to be like Abraham, the friend of God who believed what He said. On the days I felt the worst, I often grabbed a list of the Bible healing verses and read them aloud, prayed them, and declared them over my life, even when I felt puny in my faith. I read, over and over, the personal words of comfort recorded in my prayer journal, saying, “This is what the Lord has said. I will believe Him, even if my body tries to tell me otherwise.”

I am feeling much better. It’s just taking time. I like instant healing — a lot. But in the midst of the wait, I’m learning to be the friend of God who believes what He says. He’s also teaching “my hands to war, and my fingers to fight” (Psalm 144:1), “so that a bow of steel is broken by my arms” (Psalm 18:34).

Have you been waiting for a breakthrough in your situation for a long time? Do you have promises from the Lord concerning it? Maybe your faith for your miracle has been severely shaken here and there. Today is your fresh opportunity to grasp those promises again and to say, “I want to be counted as Your friend, Lord. I will believe You and watch You do what You said.”

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Coming This Fall!

The Dream Book:
A Practical Guide to Christian Dream Interpretation

Christian dream interpretation

(Cover design not yet complete)

As many of you are aware, hearing from God through dreams is one of my “things.” This book is packed with down-to-earth, how-to keys to making sense of your dreams. I explain how to set yourself up to receive more dreams from the Lord, how to be fluent in understanding the language of dreams, and the step-by-step process of interpreting their meaning.

I hope to have The Dream Book ready in plenty of time for Christmas. (Pray for me!) I will keep you updated.

 

He Will Present You Faultless

Do you ever feel nervous about appearing before the judgment seat of Christ? Maybe you are more than nervous. A better word might be tormented. Usually the Christians who struggle with this the most are not the ones who are careless about sin. They passionately love the Lord, desire to be obedient to Him, and are … well … perfectionists.

Some of us have been taught about our future audience with the Lord, that all our acquaintances from this life will be in the grandstands, watching and listening, as the most mortifying things we ever did, said, or thought are announced over the loudspeakers. Sister Eunice will now know, for the first time, what we really said about her in private. Every vile thought will now be on display. Never mind that we’ve already confessed our sins to the Lord and repented of them. Never mind that He has forgiven us. Nope! Still all there at the judgment seat — the shame to be relived again, as if we haven’t already replayed our personal This is Your Life in our heads dozens of times while on earth!

We know from Scripture that we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ” and we will give an account of ourselves before Him (2 Corinthians 5:10 and Romans 10-12). 1 Corinthians 3:12-15 tells us our deeds and motives will be tested by fire. Those with eternal value will survive unscathed, as gold, silver, or jewels would. We will receive a reward for them. Fleshly ones will be burned up, like wood, hay, or straw. (Who wants to keep them anyway?)

But, what else does the Bible say about this day before Christ’s throne? The Lord paints a very positive picture for us:

Jude 24Now unto Him Who is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy.

1 Corinthians 1:8Who shall also confirm you to the end, so that you may be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Revelation 14:5No deceit was found in their mouth, for they are without fault before the throne of God.

1 Thessalonians 5:23, 24 —  And may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body would be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Faithful is He Who calls you, Who also will do it.

Hebrews 2:11For both He Who sanctifies and they who are sanctified are all of one: for which reason He is not ashamed to call them brethren.

Ephesians 5:27That He might present it to Himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.

Colossians 1:21, 22And you who were once alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now He has reconciled in the body of His flesh through death, to present you holy and unblameable and unreproveable in His sight.

1 Corinthians 4:5Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord comes, Who will both bring to light the hidden things of darkness and make manifest the counsels of the hearts: and then shall every man have praise of God.

There will be no shame at the judgment seat of Christ for those of us who are tenderhearted in our desire to grow in becoming like Jesus, who endeavor to live for Him, not willfully continuing in sinful ways or attitudes. We will receive praise from Him, “Well done, good and faithful servant,” and the invitation, “Enter into the joy of your Lord” (Matthew 25:21, 23).

He has assured us, “And their sins and iniquities I will remember no more” (Hebrews 10:17). He also said of the person who repents, “None of his sins which he has committed shall be mentioned to him” (Ezekiel 33:16). He said, “As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us” (Psalm 103:12). Remember, while under the Old Covenant of the Law sins were only covered, under our New Covenant in Christ our sins are washed away, not to be dredged up and paraded before our eyes (or anyone else’s) again.

So, let’s look forward to our meeting with the Lord. If there is any wood, hay, or straw remaining from our life on earth, we will be grateful to be totally freed of it. This is to be a day of joy for both Jesus and us. He will present us faultless and blameless before our Father, greatly rejoicing to do so.

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peace of mind

 

 

All-Surpassing Peace in a Shaking World,
by Lee Ann Rubsam

 

 

 

personal prophecy

 

 

The Spirit-Filled Guide to Personal Prophecy,
by Lee Ann Rubsam