Years ago, the kids and I went through the Kingdom training classes. One night, I was selected to be a part of the team to ask Jesus (prophesy) what He wanted to say to each person. There had to be well over 150 people lined up around the room. It was a powerful night of activation for me. I got to the end, and Jary was waiting, but when I got to her, she turned the tables on me and began to prophesy such deep rich words of life over me. It is hard to explain all that happened at that moment. All I know is that I received something so profound through this woman’s prayers. Years later, I can say that I am walking in what she released over me.
“We were out shopping, and my son had his money in hand. He was on the hunt for something to buy in a store that he usually wouldn’t buy something in. He had money, and it was a lot to his standards, and he had the urge to spend it. He found this watch that he wanted. He showed it to me, and I said it was nice. He already has a watch, but I told him it was up to him. After a while of hanging onto the watch, he came up to me and said, ‘Mom, I asked God if I should spend my money on this watch, and He said I didn’t need it. So, I’m not going to buy it. He’s right.’ I didn’t even have to tell him to ask his Father about it. He turned to Him on his own. My heart was celebrating, and I told him I was proud of him for making the right choice and listening to God. Thank you. Thank you for your help, your words, and for showing us how to seek God in everything we do.”
My childhood was brutal. It was full of torment, lies, abuse, deep hurt, and confusion. I was in a coma from a drug overdose when my mom died at another hospital of breast cancer. It took me years to unravel the pain and forgive her. It was not until my 30’s that the reoccurring nightmares ceased over the emotional torment with my mom. God did not just have to heal things in me; He had to rewrite ‘normal.’ I no longer have hatred in my heart toward her. I no longer judge her as a person or a mom. I no longer speak ill of her. I no longer blame her for my heartbreak and pain.
Furthermore, I have not passed on the cycle to my children. Why? #1. God is good! He pulled me out, saved me, and restored the deep places in my heart back to Him. My parents were powerful influences in my life, but God is bigger. They have done many things wrong, but God is a Master of rewriting stories, redemption, and making broken places whole again. He is the ultimate perfect Parent. #2. My mom was not an evil person. If she was a member of Let the Children Fly, I think she would weep at the revelation of her own doing. She did what she did because she was a spiritual orphan trying to parent! Orphans can NOT produce a life of peace and joy. Let the Children Fly is simply the tools my mom needed but did not have to parent me well. God’s ministry through me is my love gift back to my own mother. While I may have lost my mom, I have gained thousands of parents around the globe who get to hear the message that they can partner with God in their parenting and can do things differently with their children. I am passionate about what I do because I have lived the fruit of a life without it.
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I had an encounter with the Lord that left me in tears for 48 hours. My soul was agitated and frustrated, and I even said, “Either I am going to quit, or God is bringing me to death.” I spent a whole day pressing in, talking with wise counselors, and seeking Him. Finally, the revelation came and revealed an area I have been out of alignment in. Not ‘sin,’ but a belief that I was modeling my life after what wasn’t His heart. A lie so deeply entrenched it shaped my view of Him. When we are out of alignment, we create landing places for the enemy to use and influence us. Think of a disc in your spine being out of alignment – it will affect many areas of your body. Alignment matters! It would be so easy to lament and ask God why on earth did He wait 27 years to reveal that to me? It would have shaved off years of pain, confusion, and heartbreak to have been aligned years – no, decades – ago. But that is not the Father’s heart. He is not interested in airlifting us over the ocean, dropping us in the middle just to call us ‘deep.’ He is interested in the journey, the process, and the discovery together. I feel like some of you have cursed your process with words such as, “I should be further along than I am,” “I should be over this by now,” “I will never be free of this,” “I will never measure up to where others are at,” “Freedom is not for me,” etc. Break agreement with these lies and allow Jesus to be your guide one step at a time. He knows what He is doing with your life and will never ever be a day early or a minute too late. I bless your JOURNEY!
When we first became a solo family, I was concerned about how my young children would view men. God began to highlight certain men to us; one was good at loving his wife, another was super funny, and another was great at connecting with his children. Some were models to us far away, and others became the hands and feet of Jesus to us. I began to call out certain character traits in each of the men to my children, and we created a phrase, “They are a Purple Heart Dad.” Years later, we were writing out our prayers for the year, and my daughter, who has received many prophetic words about the medical field, wrote down, “I want to a Ph.D.,” which I assumed meant a medical degree. Months after praying for her Ph.D., we realized she meant Purple Heart Dad. To this day, we use this expression almost weekly as we see men being incredible examples of kindness, love, servanthood, protection, joy, wisdom, strength, etc. God has given us so many incredible men who have stood in the gap and shown us God’s heart for a man, father, husband, and friend.
Some dear friends of ours said they had wanted to buy a home for a few years but were waiting for the Lord to show them who for. They approached us and said they would like to buy a home for us by paying cash. We enjoyed looking at houses together, and they were ready to sign on a new construction home. While I loved the idea for a variety of reasons, AND the home we picked out was gorgeous, I did not have peace. We waited and looked at a few more homes, but I couldn’t do it. When there is no peace, you have to lay down whatever it is – no matter how big or how wild or how big of a ‘blessing’ it is. Peace is my pillar, and I am anchored to it. The moment I asked if we could lay it down, peace returned, and within a short amount of time, God made it abundantly clear we were moving to North Carolina. Could you imagine if I said yes to the immediate blessing and forfeited what He had planned for us? It puts a chill in my spine to think I could have missed out on His goodness for us because I was tempted to grab the comfortable at the moment.
I share this to encourage you to hold onto your anchor of peace no matter what the weather report says. Peace is your pillar!
When I first began life as a single mom, I would wake in the middle of the night, totally paralyzed by anxiety. The best way to describe how I felt is to recall the scene from the movie Titanic when they were in the bottom cabin, and water began filling the room. They only had a tiny pocket of air left and were gasping for that last bit of air before they were fully submerged. That is how I felt, except I had four kids holding onto me, and none of them could swim. It was horrifying to consider which one I had to let go of because I couldn’t carry them all. Talk about horrible! One day, I couldn’t take the stress of being stressed any longer and faced my fear head-on. I realized that the verse in Jeremiah about His plans for a future and hope was my life verse (Jeremiah 29:11), but it also applied to the kids. At that moment, I realized I got five doses of that promise because my kids were minors and under my watch. I finally surrendered all of the panic, worry, and anxiety. I declared, “Father, if it is Your best will and plan for us to be homeless, then we will be the cutest homeless family standing on the corner with our signs.” I was quite serious at the time, and all I can say is that you would not believe the financial testimonies God has produced through our family. They are nothing short of miracles. Supernatural living was birthed through striving to rest in His goodness.
When I was in my 20’s, I was a part of a solid, healthy young adults ministry. We were away at our annual singles conference, where one of my friends played Jesus in a skit. Afterward, a small group of us were hanging out in the lodge with our pastor talking. The friend who played Jesus ordered a beer and came to tell us that someone had made a big deal about ‘Jesus’ drinking a beer. It seemed silly to many of us, but then our pastor asked him if that beer was something he would die for. He said, “No, it’s just a beer,” and the pastor encouraged him to lay it down because it was causing someone else to struggle. I was so moved by that, and it hasn’t left me all these years. I may have a right to do something, but I have the privilege and honor of loving those around me, and sometimes that means giving up, laying down, or sacrificing for their gain. This isn’t about the approval of others; it is about being winsome with our choices, words, actions, and character. I have taught this principle to my children – you don’t have to be doing something ‘wrong’ to affect someone.
God is always calling your name.
I excitedly read a book cover to cover in one sitting about children hearing God and then set it down. My religious mind told me that they were too young for such complicated spiritual matters. While the information exploded in my heart I longed for the day they would be mature enough to participate in the Kingdom! A few days later, we were all down by a river eating shelled peanuts. Lauren, my eldest twin, asked if she could feed the squirrels. Suddenly, to my own surprise, I heard myself say, “I do not know if it is a good idea or not, go ask Jesus,” and a few seconds later she jumped off the chair to go play. To know Lauren is to know that she is quite strong and bright and she will repeatedly ask and even repackage her question until she gets the answer she desires. She doesn’t just let things go and run off and play without getting her answer. I called her back and inquired if she asked Jesus or not, and what she said rocked my world to the core. She said, “Oh yeah, He said it wouldn’t be a good idea,” and again she bounced off to play. For me, in that moment, the world stopped. Tears streamed down my face as I realized that my baby had just heard the voice of the God of the universe. I knew in that moment that I was not a single parent but that my children have a Father who is eager to parent them. I took a mental snapshot of what just happened and vowed to the Lord that I would spend the rest of my days on earth tuning my children’s ears to His voice!
If you have followed Let the Children Fly for any amount of time you will notice a theme of sharing the stories of people having an issue/conflict, asking Jesus and then walking out the fruit of what He said. Anyone can have a bad day, mess up or create conflict, but as sons and daughters we get to declare, “Look what my Father did.”
I am passionate about YOU cultivating conversations with your Creator. If a parent has a lifestyle of communicating with their Creator, it will become natural for their children. We can’t expect our children to play in the Kingdom if we aren’t modeling it first in our own lives (I didn’t say children can’t hear God unless you do. I said it would not be their go-to if it isn’t something that is the norm in your household).
If God is the head of our households, then we need to be giving Him more room to speak into the decisions and situations that face our families today.
Jeremiah 33:3 – “Call to me, and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.”
Before we get into the good stuff, we need to resolve something first.
Each person must come to their conclusion to this question. “Does God still speak today?”
Some would say, “NO!” Some would say, “YES!”
I say, let’s ask Jesus and let His Word be our guide.
John 10:27 – “My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.”
Luke 6:46 – “Why do you call me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say?”
John 5:19 – “Jesus gave them this answer: Very truly I tell you, the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does.”
Many have been taught that He no longer speaks and if that is your adopted belief, then you are going to be double minded in trying to have conversations with Him. Your underlying belief will sabotage your growth because you will cast doubt on anything you hear.
Let’s go through the Word one more time.
Jeremiah 33:3 – “Call to me, and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.” **Conversations with our Creator is a two-way communication, not a grocery list.**
John 10:27 – “My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.” **How can you follow if you cannot hear? Hearing is essential to following!**
John 5:19 – “Jesus gave them this answer: Very truly I tell you, the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does.” **This is an astounding verse. Jesus is saying there isn’t anything (nothing, was the word He used) great about Himself, but what makes Him so fruitful is that He ONLY does what He sees/hears His Father doing. Part of following Him means to imitate His ways and do as He does.**
Luke 6:46 – “Why do you call me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say?” **God is the original parent and doesn’t want us just to hear Him, but obey. (Aren’t we the same way with our children?) He isn’t just demanding obedience; He is asking we following what He is telling us. There is a difference. Old Testament was about the rules and law. The New Testament was about our relationship and connection with Him. As a loving Father, He instructs us and wants us to trust Him enough to obey.**
Parents, parents, teachers, and friends are there to help us, but it is ultimately Holy Spirit’s job to lead us into truth. John 16:13 says, “But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come.”
I want to leave you with an action step based on John 11:40 that reads, “Jesus looked her in the eye. ‘Didn’t I tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?’”
Do you want to see the glory of God? Regardless of wherever you are right now on the subject, you can see the glory of God *IF* you believe.
For those who haven’t experienced conversations with your Creator, ask, “Holy Spirit, who do I need to forgive for teaching me that You no longer communicate with your children?”
For those of you who have experienced it before, ask, “Holy Spirit, is there anything blocking my way to greater intimacy with my Creator?”
Years ago, I heard of this story, and it has shaped my faith in God’s ability to protect my children. A young Christian student was home for the summer. She had gone to visit some friends one evening, and the time passed quickly as each shared their various experiences of the past year. She ended up staying longer than she had planned and had to walk home alone. But she wasn’t afraid because it was a small town and she lived only a few blocks away. As she walked along under the tall elm trees, Diane asked God to keep her safe from harm and danger. When she reached the alley, which was a shortcut to her house, she decided to take it. However, halfway down the alley, she noticed a man standing at the end as though he were waiting for her. She became uneasy and began to pray, asking for God’s protection. Instantly a comforting feeling of quietness and security wrapped around her; she felt as though someone was walking with her. When she reached the end of the alley, she walked right past the man and arrived home safely. The following day, she read in the paper that a young girl had been raped in the same alley just twenty minutes after she had been there. Feeling overwhelmed by this tragedy and the fact that it could have been her, she began to weep, thanking the Lord for her safety, and to help this young woman, she decided to go to the police station. She felt she could recognize the man, so she told them her story. The police asked her if she would be willing to look at a lineup to see if she could identify him. She agreed and immediately pointed out the man she had seen in the alley the night before. When the man was told he had been identified, he immediately broke down and confessed. The officer thanked Diane for her bravery and asked if there was anything they could do for her; she asked if they would ask the man one question. Diane was curious as to why he had not attacked her. When the policeman asked him, he answered, “Because she wasn’t alone. She had two tall men walking on either side of her.”
Sometimes parenting with Holy Spirit is funny. I just praised my daughter for NOT sharing with her sibling (and meant it). Emma is my second twin, and her whole life, we have had to go after her using her voice, saying NO, and setting boundaries. She is my child who will freely give you the shirt off her back and socks, too! She is also the child who will have tears in her eyes and a smile on her face. Once, her twin sister asked if she could have one of her birthday presents that was still wrapped, and Emma said, “Sure!” It has been a long road of teaching her how to listen to her heart and respond accordingly. YES, I want my children to share, but not at the expense of becoming a doormat. YES, I want my children to obey, but not from a place of being double-minded. YES, I want my children to put others first, but not at the expense of losing her true self. So, one morning, when her sibling asked to borrow her phone for the day, she said, “No,” I pulled her aside and praised her. Where her twin has had to learn how to be more kind, thoughtful, and caring towards others, Emma has had to learn to be kinder to herself.