God Has Begun a New Thing

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“Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.” Isaiah 43:19 (ESV)

If I were to re-write the above scripture it would say:  “Behold, I have accomplished a fresh work; now it shall sprout and come about; do you know what I’m doing? I will even lay down a new path in the wilderness and a new river in the desolate places.”

This particular scripture was spoken over me approximately 15 years ago as a prophetic word.  Today I am declaring this word over you!  God has begun a new thing.

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A chance meeting (only if you believe there are chance encounters with God) over the weekend opened up something new for me. I ran into a man I’d met two years ago. I’ll call him Andy. During that encounter, Andy spoke a prophetic word over a group of believers, gathered for a time of worship and prayer.  It was a good word, one that resonated with me so deeply that I was impressed to ask if I might be able to share it with my church home. He graciously consented to send me that word once he got home and was able to transcribe it.

I emailed him my contact information and waited. In the busyness of his life it took a little time. One day Andy wrote that he had not forgotten me, and he would get to it soon. In the meantime, he asked if I would pray about a situation in his life and he proceeded to tell me a bit about a problem with one of his children. My heart ached for him and I wrote back something I felt inspired to share.

You see, this is how God works in family. In the weakness of one, He will use another, perhaps someone in a similar situation, perhaps one who is doing well or standing in God’s strength at the moment, to speak encouragement to the other. This is what happened that day. I was caught up in a similar situation and at that particular moment, I was walking strong in God’s provisions. That I would respond to this new brother’s dilemma was all the Lord asked at the moment. A short time later, Andy sent the transcribed word I had asked for. And then our correspondence fell silent. Until last weekend.

My husband and I almost declined to go to this meeting but, at the last moment, we went. We’d just arrived and were going down the aisle to find a seat when once again, I ran into Andy. He recognized me and we quickly struck up a conversation. With neither of us remembering the email correspondence from two years earlier, he told me about his life now and he made some bold statements about his relationship with his children today. Andy was walking firmly in the new thing God had provided for him! I asked him how he’d come to this new understanding and his reply was, “I’m not sure when or how this happened, but I’m so comfortable in this place, knowing He has my kids covered!” I had recently experienced a troubling encounter with a family member and I was still hurting and struggling from that time. Andy’s words in this moment ministered greatly to my hurting spirit.

I went home that night and remembered that I wanted to look for Andy’s prophetic word.  I had recently purged old emails and was a bit fearful that perhaps I might have deleted his word. I laughed out loud as I found Andy’s word on the last page of my emails; I had deleted everything prior to about a month before Andy and I began corresponding! I love God’s sense of humor!

As I read our email thread I not only found the prophetic word but also the email about Andy’s child and my response. I was deeply touched, not so much by my words of encouragement, but by the reciprocity of God’s provision. Here were words of encouragement sent to pretty much a stranger in his struggles. Our encounter earlier this evening provided the exact same encouragement to me, almost two years later to the day!

Do we understand the power of our God? How much fun does the Father have, sitting in heaven, orchestrating such encounters? Do He, Jesus and Holy Spirit sit around a table and make plans for this child and that one, providing chance encounters for us, spinning the tale into these delightful times that transcend time, and sometimes bringing us back around to the point of beginning, only swapping participants so we stand in awe at His provision? I don’t even know if this is truly expressing the awe and wonder that I feel as I realized all that had been in play at my meeting and corresponding briefly with Andy.

To top it all off, I shared Andy’s prophetic word with my pastor last night at our mid-week service. He was truly touched by this word. And here’s the kicker. Andy’s word was deep and two years ago it touched me that it was indeed a word for our body of believers. But when I finally received the word from Andy a few weeks later, I never shared it and in fact, I forgot all about it. Not to worry however, because God had it on His timetable and this past Friday evening, He orchestrated to get Andy and I back in contact so the word would arise. It speaks to our congregation now even better than if I had shared it two years ago!

The end of the story is this. I’ve been wrestling lately with a couple of decisions that have to be made. I’ve been wrestling with my life, my future, and what does God want for me. I wasn’t hearing a thing – until I ran again into Andy. And suddenly, the truth of Isaiah 43:19 is releasing something into my life. Right. Here. Right. Now.

I wish I could put into words the deep rumbling I feel in my spirit. It is a transition space similar to that of a child being born. Just before the birth, there is pain and discomfort indescribable. It is the agony of anticipating something joyous and yet you cannot see it, touch it, and it actually hurts! I am in transition and I am waiting for that which I know is going be a joyous time in my life. I do perceive it.

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My friend, I’ve learned over the years that when God does something in me, He is willing to do much the same for others. My life, just as yours, is a testimony of all that Jesus Christ has done and is planning to do in my future. Testimony is the spirit of prophecy! What Christ does for one, He is willing to do for others for He is no respecter of persons.

I declare over you right now that Jesus Christ is doing a new thing in you; do you not perceive it? He is making a way through the desolate places of your life, providing life-giving waters where there has been none. You are entering into a new place – now! I pray you will receive this prophetic word over you today and I would love to hear your comments below. Get ready to move – God has begun a new thing!

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Receiving Peace

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I don’t know where this is, but I’d like to be there right now. It looks peaceful. And quiet. I can imagine the sweet songs of birds and off in the distance a horse softly whinnying. Perhaps the sounds of people talking softly or the giggles of children playing in the last moments of the day before they are called into the house for the night. My spirit longs for the peace of this scene.

“Peace I leave with you; My [own] peace I now give and bequeath to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid. [Stop allowing yourselves to be agitated and disturbed; and do not permit yourselves to be fearful and intimidated and cowardly and unsettled.]” John 14:27 AMP

God has been showing me new things recently. My husband and I facilitate a home group and there has been much revelation coming out of our study and conversations. And there in the midst of these discussions God’s peace has come in ways I’ve not expected.

Jesus tells us in John 14 that He is leaving His peace with us, but not as the world gives peace. That causes me to stop. What is He saying?

The picture above leaves me with an impression of peace, of what I believe peace looks and sounds like. In my minds eye, it is what I perceive peace in this world to be. And yet, if I’m understanding correctly, the words of Jesus say this isn’t the peace He left for us.

No, His peace is something more. In His words He instructs us to not allow ourselves to be troubled – or afraid. How many times a day do you find yourself troubled or afraid? Honestly, I have troubling thoughts more often than I’d like to admit.

What is He trying to show us then?  I love the Amplified version because here, if we keep reading, we get a hint. It says, “stop allowing!” I take it there is a choice in this verse.  Jesus left His peace here for us to enjoy but it may not be what we think of when we think of peace.

Where do those troubling thoughts or fear come from? From the enemy of our soul, Satan.  How often does he attempt to cause us grief throughout our days? Often! I don’t know about you, but I find troubling thoughts in some of the oddest places of my life.

I think understandably, troubling thoughts and perhaps even fear can come from the news, perhaps situations we find ourselves in, maybe even in the everyday occurrences of our lives. Then they get compounded by conversations that take directions we didn’t expect, news from our loved ones, our jobs, and so on.

Surprisingly I’ve found troubling thoughts in my social media connections, in realizing that my good intentions have fallen by the wayside and even in conversations with folks I dearly love. Let’s face it. The enemy is quite adept at throwing us curves throughout our days! Why? Because if he can keep us off center, he can keep us from God’s peace!

Thus, Jesus is telling us in this verse that we must work at remaining in His peace.  It’s there for us because He told us He left it for us to partake of. But you and I are going to have to work at receiving His peace.  It means we must ever be on guard at the enemy’s tactics.

Here’s the kicker. When we begin to be aware of what the enemy is doing and all the ways he loves to take us into troubling thoughts and/or fear, we deliver a very gratifying and wicked left hook directly back at him! And that, my friend, feels really, really good!

No, I’m not sitting on that beautiful hill as the sun sets sweetly in the distance. I’m sitting here on my couch in my living room realizing that I’m resting in His peace tonight. I just finished looking at one of my social media sites and something I read disturbed me. But instead of allowing that disturbing thought to take hold, I saw what he was trying to do. I captured the thought, and in realizing and denying it, I just sucker-punched the enemy.

Not tonight Satan! I’m resting in the peace Jesus talked about in John 14:27. And that’s the truth!