Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Show Me the Money

Proverbs 22:1 (NIV) A good name is more desirable than great riches;
to be esteemed is better than silver or gold.

So what is in a name? Apparently names are important—
  • God called our names from the foundation of the earth.
  • God changed names to represent new character traits.
  • Look at how many baby name books are on the market.
  • There are classes to teach you how to remember names.
  • People get offended when you do not remember their name.
  • Names trigger emotions.

What do you think when you hear these names:

George W Bush? 
Christopher Columbus? 
George Washington? 
Bill Clinton? 
Jack the Ripper? 
Abraham Lincoln?

Do you remember more good or bad?

What do people think when they hear your name? Is it loaded with integrity? Have you made it a good name?

Proverbs 10:7 The name of the righteous is used in blessings, but the name of the wicked will rot.

Do people use your name as a blessing?

Proverbs 18:10 The name of the Lord is a fortified tower; the righteous run to it and are safe.

We are created in His image. Is your name safe for people?

I was an unwed mother when I had Jason. I gave him the last name of his biological father.  (Mainly because back then you did not have a choice to leave the father’s name off) This name bothered me. He did not even know Jason existed. By the time I knew I was pregnant he had gotten married.  Jason’s last name bothered me and him. He already suffered from rejection. He had to fight inadequacy, inferiority all of those unintended consequences from sin. I named him after a mighty warrior so I knew he would come into his own. He would learn to strategize. He would learn people. He would grow into the most fabulous man I knew he could become BUT I hated his last name. He came to me first. He wanted to know why his last name was different than Jenny’s and mine. I told him the whole story. He wanted a different last name.

I looked into it…it would just take a lot of paperwork, several trips downtown, some money and several months. I went to the courthouse and got started. I shared with Jason every step of the way. When it was all done we went to the courthouse, the 3 of us, to change his name.

What a momentous time. This new name meant he belonged to Jenny and me in a way he had not felt before. This name change told everyone he was not “different”, not rejected, not inferior.  The judge read all the papers, asked me lots of questions, stamped all the paperwork and then he leaned way over his desk to talk directly to Jason.

He had Jason come behind his desk and he began to talk about the importance of a name. He said, “You make your name. It doesn’t define you, you define it. You can make your name a good name. You can bring honor to your name." He talked to Jason in depth about bringing integrity to his name. About being a man of honor. About listening to his mom and living up to the standards she set. Jason said he understood and as soon as he did the judge signed the papers while Jason watched. Then he hit the desk with the gavel. It was s solemn moment that quickly turned to laughter and hugs.

So I ask, how wealthy are you?

Proverbs 22:1 (NIV) A good name is more desirable than great riches;
    to be esteemed is better than silver or gold. 

What does this have to do with intercession?

It is time to pray integrity back into the church. It is time to pray for people to take the judge’s word about how important their name is. It is time to have a name that reflects God.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

How Trashy are You??????

I used to think I was a trash can for anyone who wanted to dump on me:

Then I realized that God had a different idea when he created me. I emptied all the trash.

As life has progressed I realized I was new:

I recently received an email that was vile--very like a rotten, maggot-filled dumpster.

VILE: extremely unpleasant.
"he has a vile temper"

It was not the first email I have ever received that was like this and will not be the last. I realized a long time ago that I am no one's garbage can. What a revelation that was! I re-purposed anything in my life that looks like a garbage can:

Oh God, my heart is quiet and confident. Psalm 57:7

My first response to this email was, “Wow Sally, you must be horrible.” But I decided to reject emotion for logic. I took each sentence/thought to the throne and asked God—is this me? Do I have any part of this? What do I need to change? We have to be willing to hear truth and correct it but tearing down by someone is not God.

We meditate on your kindness and your love. Psalm 48:9

As I was praying I forwarded the email to Mike. I finished praying and figured I would go over it more later and see there was any accuracy. The intent of the email seemed to be motivated by jealousy and hatred with nothing loving involved.

When I was done I called Mike and asked him if he had read the email. He was out on calls so he had not seen it. I asked him to call me when he was done reading and I went back to cleaning or something fun like that. I was praying in tongues when Mike pulled in the driveway.

I asked him what he was doing home, “I heard your voice.”

I have to say I really felt loved at that moment (even more so than normal). We went over the email line by line. Mike pointed out that Jesus was not present—there was no offer of reconciliation, no way to restore or repair. It was vile. Mike responded in a couple of different way but he is always kind and methodical both which is a wonderful mix.

After he left I went back to prayer. I realized how like God this all was…..

The world attacks in the vilest manner possible with nothing more in mind that to hurt you. The enemy of your soul wants to destroy you starting with “feelings”. Just whispering the name of God brings him running to your rescue. He presents truth. He responds on your behalf. He soothes you. He reaffirms that you are loved.

1 Peter 5:7 (AMP)  Casting the whole of your care [all your anxieties, all your worries, all your concerns, once and for all] on Him, for He cares for you affectionately and cares about you watchfully.

1 Peter 5:6-7 (MSG) So be content with who you are, and don’t put on airs. God’s strong hand is on you; he’ll promote you at the right time. Live carefree before God; he is most careful with you.

We do not have to respond in the flesh or in our emotions to anything. We can look at it logically. The purpose of the enemy is to distract you and get you to partner up with him. Don’t do it. Irritated at someone? Hurt by people and their comments? Looking for the right words to respond? Don't do it. Do not be tempted to be negative, hateful or respond like you did before you were born again. 

Romans 12:9-21
Love in Action

9 Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. 10 Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. 11 Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. 12 Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. 13 Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.

14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. 15 Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. 16 Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited.

17 Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone. 18 If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. 19 Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. 20 On the contrary:

“If your enemy is hungry, feed him;
if he is thirsty, give him something to drink.
In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”
21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

Be intentional about the people you allow to speak into and over your life—surround yourself with people who are growing in God and who build each other up. Even when iron sharpens iron it is a building up of each person.

Partner with God against the enemy—it’ll save you a lot of pain and you can get back to praying.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

What Kind of Salt do you Like?

Matthew 5:13-16(NIV)
13 “You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot."

I have talked about salt a lot. I have an entire salt cook book and it is HUGE. 

There are so many kinds of salt—German chili salt. Murray River salt. Smoked Welsh flaked salt. Sea salt. Kosher salt. Every salt has a different purpose and I love it all. I have taught and blogged about how important the different kinds of salt are—just like the body of Christ. Every part has a purpose. Every purpose is important. Every person is important.

Have you ever been to a restaurant and salted your food and it made no difference? Then you added more. Maybe you shook the salt into your palm to see if it was coming out of the shaker. The salt was probably old. The flavor either gone or nearly gone.

How about you?

People may talk about you. They may despise your Christianity. They may mock you. They may make you miserable with some of their words and or actions. BUT when they need something you are the one they will run to…..they ask for prayer, they pour out their problem, they ask advice. When they need flavor in their life are you salty? Or, are you like the salt shaker that you have to check because it has no flavor?

What does this have to do with intercession?

The intercessors have allowed themselves to become tired. They are weary in well doing.  Does that describe you? God told us NOT to become weary because He knew we would have that temptation.
We are called to be instant in season and out. We have to be different than the world. Are you ready with the answers? Is the anointing consuming your life? Are you ready to season the world? Are you in the word or the world? Are you meditating and feasting on the word or the “delicacies” the world has to offer?

Are you the fullness of flavor God called you to be?