YOU CAN’T KILL JESUS

YOU CAN’T KILL JESUS

Family devotions one day seemed like a disaster, but that ended up being the lesson. The child who was supposed to lead picked a chapter and spent the next ten minutes reading to us, but we were all getting a bit dizzy with their fast-paced reading and rushing through the passage at record speed. Then they gave their own commentary, and 20 minutes later, we were still sitting there rather detached and unengaged. They then suggested we soak for a few moments but put on dance music, making it nearly impossible to ‘be still and know.’ Family devotions felt like a bit of a flop. Until God showed up and said, “Your lesson today is the flopped lesson.” We spent the rest of the time talking about how to lead others and create space for people to engage and for Holy Spirit to come. I asked the ‘leader child’ what the heart of the passage was, and she said, “That you can’t kill Jesus.” BOOM, that was explosive. I encouraged her to make sure as a leader, she did read the entire passage to get the front and back story of the Scriptures, but that sometimes less is more, and had she started with that statement, we could have spent hours unpacking that. My whole point in inviting you into our living room is simply to share that it isn’t about getting it right or doing it correctly. Even in the flop, Jesus shows up. My kids are learning and growing, and they grew in understanding of how to be a better leader. I would say that is a success.

JESUS IS MY DEFENDER

I am so undone by the goodness of Jesus. I was processing some deep things as my daughter was walking through one of her biggest breakthroughs. It was breathtaking to watch her walk this out on her own. While spending time with Jesus, I kept hearing the story about the woman caught in adultery. There are many thoughts about what Jesus was writing in the sand, so I asked Him to show me. He answered my question by showing me the position of His eyes. While the men of the day, who deemed themselves mighty important and superior to the rest, dragged a naked woman before the courts (the shame and humiliation must have been brutal), Jesus looked away. Could it be He knew His presence alone was convicting, and He didn’t want to stare at her nakedness? Then I heard Him say, “I didn’t defend her sin, but I did defend the JUDGMENTS against her.” I wept! Jesus isn’t about shaming you publicly for your weaknesses, sins, or messy places. He is there to defend the part of your heart that is in need of a Savior. Read John 8!

HEARING GOD

God speaks to us in various ways, but one powerful way He speaks to His children is through peace. 

Peace – a sense of liquid peace comes over you like a warm blanket. Do you know that God is peace? Pure, 100% peace that doesn’t match your physical, on-earth circumstances. When we sit quietly and invite His presence, we can often feel it in the form of peace washing over us. What does a loving Father do when His children are upset? Begin giving instruction? NO! A loving Father would scoop them up, hold them close to His chest, and embrace their tiny bodies. He is communicating love, protection, safety, and security in His embrace. Sometimes we want God to tell us this and that, and sometimes He just wants to wrap us in His presence, and out of that, He leads us where we need to be. This is truly ‘entering the place of rest’ that so few believers learn to enjoy. We want to squirm or ‘do’ instead of just resting while He holds us. 

Think about what life would be like if you went mute and had to try to teach, train, and love your children without words. Seriously, think about how many times a day you use your words to guide your children, teach and train them, encourage them, cheer them on, and help them. How often do you use your words to lavish love all over them and tell them how precious and beautiful they are to you? Now ponder how often you let your Father speak to you a day.

HOLY SPIRIT IS YOUR FRIEND #2

I had two significant encounters that changed my relationship with Holy Spirit. Here is the second one.

I was so hungry for more of Him and heard about a conference called Awaken to Destiny with a man named Randy Clark. I went. The worship was deep, yet I felt a disconnect. I got back to my hotel room late and sobbed. I told the Lord, “Whatever this space is between us, I can’t take it anymore. I cannot possibly go through another worship hour, another great speaker, and know that there is MORE but not be able to experience it.” I literally felt like there was a part of me that would die if He didn’t close the gap. The following morning, I woke at 4, and in ways that only Holy Spirit can orchestrate. He brought me to this YouTube video. Watch it for yourself: Healing the Orphaned Spirit – Leif Hetland – YouTube.

I went back to the conference and felt like a totally different person. Later that day, Randy called for “impartation.” I had no idea what that word even meant. I knew that some people were going forward, but others were not. I found myself walking up front, honestly not knowing who was supposed to be there. But I didn’t care. I was so hungry it didn’t matter if I made a fool out of myself. I had this awareness that since I was three people deep from the stage, Randy would not be able to touch or pray for me, which I was okay with. I felt safer being three rows away from him (because I knew he was powerful and wasn’t sure what would happen, which scared me a bit). I found my arms stretched out and kept saying “Jesus, Jesus, Jesus,” repeatedly, but with such force; it felt embarrassing and freeing at the same time. Suddenly, this massive, giant-like hand clapped itself over my left shoulder, and I fell to the ground. I felt this physical wave of deep warmth I have never ever felt before. I honestly did not know at that point if this was God or not. I just knew that I felt so loved, and I liked it. I was aware that others were on the ground, too, but had no grid for what was happening.

When you sit on the sideline watching, it is NOTHING like being the one who is experiencing it for the first time. I opened my eyes just a crack to see this man step over me, the same one who put his hand on my shoulder. I knew it was that man named Bill Johnson who was speaking later that day, but I knew nothing about him except for the fact that his touch sent me into the most powerful experience with God’s love that this girl has ever known. I stood up from that encounter and have never been the same. His love touched something so deep in a way that I did not know was humanly possible this side of heaven. Why am I sharing all of this with you? Because I want you to see that I spent a decade pursuing God, Jesus, and the Word with everything I had but was resisting Holy Spirit just as strong. My mind would not allow me to be entertained with the truth about Him. I had to EXPERIENCE Him to know Him because my mind had created boundaries preventing me from learning more about who He was. Saul was the same way. He was Jesus’ #1 enemy until he EXPERIENCED Him. These two encounters (experiences with Holy Spirit) forever changed my life and ushered me into my calling and purpose on earth.

FAMILY DEVOTIONS

Family devotions were led by Hudson one morning, and I was curious to see what he would come up with. When he woke, I reminded him it was his day and asked if he was ready. His response was, “Nope,” but I could tell his wheels were spinning. He grabbed his sister’s devotions, which touched me deeply, knowing that he was ministering to four females. While seeking Jesus is unisex, I was so touched by this thoughtfulness. He talked about getting hurt by friends and how we sometimes have to stand alone but that we are never alone with Jesus. He did a great job of engaging us and asking us questions about the passage he had just read (he learned from yesterday). One of the things I cherish most about my family is the way we all support each other by asking Jesus questions together. We each got to ask something as the rest of us listened to what Jesus had to say. It is so life-giving and encouraging to hear what everyone heard Him say, which is the very essence of the prophetic (hearing God for others).

MAY YOU BECOME MORE LIKE HIM

My goal is to take your hand and place it in Jesus’ hand so that you walk this together out with Him. He is the One who sees, knows, and holds the keys to your freedom. He is the One who purchased your forgiveness, healing, and wholeness. He is the One able to heal, redeem and restore. He is the One who loves you far beyond what your mind can grasp. He is the One who understands. Jesus is your friend, Holy Spirit is your guide, and Father God is your anchor.

Before you begin, start off by inviting Him. “Holy Spirit, I welcome You to come and reveal whatever it is You want to show me. I ask for an increase of Your peace and presence. Open my eyes to see what You see. Open my ears to hear what You have to say. Open my heart so that I can receive all that You have for me. In Jesus’ name.” 

I have a few keys for you:

Journal – I encourage you to get a journal and be intentional about spending time writing and processing whatever He is revealing to you. Sometimes we can process things better on paper, and it serves as a great reflection to go back and see how the Lord is leading us step by step. 

Worship – Increase your worship. I know you are all busy, but this is like charging your batteries, so you aren’t running on empty. Worship fills you with His presence and envelopes you in His love. Worship aligns, alters, and shifts things inside of us without our minds and bodies being aware. Worship puts the focus back on Him and increases our faith. You can have an intentional time of worship, play your favorite set while making dinner, find worship channels on YouTube, or listen while you are driving, taking a shower, or while the kids are playing. Listen to it while falling asleep or be intentional to take a five-minute break on the floor and saturate yourself in His presence. The goal is not to see how little you can do, but the truth is, a little bit of His presence changes everything. 

Community – While your struggle might have a different name, the truth is we all have our areas of weakness, triggers, and make messes. Invite a friend to a park date and have the kids play while you talk about the posts and what God is revealing to you. Ask them over for coffee or plan an informal mom’s night out to bring it up in discussion. You will be surprised just how much others long to be seen in their parenting. Be the one who breaks the ice and creates space for them to be seen and grow. 

2 Corinthians 3:16-18, (MSG) says, “Whenever, though, they turn to face God as Moses did, God removes the veil and there they are—face-to-face! They suddenly recognize that God is a living, personal presence, not a piece of chiseled stone. And when God is personally present, a living Spirit, that old, constricting legislation is recognized as obsolete. We’re free of it! All of us! Nothing between us and God, our faces shining with the brightness of his face. And so we are transfigured much like the Messiah, our lives gradually becoming brighter and more beautiful as God enters our lives and we become like him.” 

May He be revealed to you deeply, and may you become more like Him!

TEACH ME

What is your number one parenting question right now? Ask Jesus and learn how to partner with Him in parenting your child – together! He alone knows what they need more than 100 earthly wise men. So give it a try, and then spend the next 18 years strengthening your partnership with their Creator.

MIND VS. SPIRIT

All the wisdom in the world doesn’t change a person’s heart. When I speak words of wisdom, they go from my mind to your mind; but when Holy Spirit speaks, it goes into your spirit, and that is where the real transformation occurs. One word from Jesus can change more inside of you than a 12-week course. This is why it is so crucial that we often bring our children to the Lord’s presence to ask Him what He thinks. This is creating an encounter for our children. Instead of wisdom alone guiding them, they are learning they have a relationship with the living God, who wants to help them in all situations.

ENCOUNTER THE FATHER

The goal is not to use spiritual tools to ‘fix’ our children. The goal is to lead our children to an encounter with their Father!

TRAPPED

Have you ever walked through something and felt trapped? I have. I recently was in a situation, and it felt like the scales were completely even – darned if I did, darned if I didn’t. I felt trapped, and I hated that feeling more than the dislike of my circumstances. I knew I needed to process my heart as the feeling of being trapped was keeping me from hearing and seeing clearly. I saw Jesus reach out His hand and touch the dead center of my belly. I sensed He was validating the hardness of my situation and that I was between a rock and a hard place in the natural. I finally ask, “Jesus, which side do You want me to choose?” I knew that was the wrong question, but I was trapped and needed to start somewhere in my attempt to get out. I saw Him reach His hand towards me as if to give me a lifeline. I grabbed it, and He pulled me closer to Him out from between a rock and a hard place. I didn’t need to choose between darned or darned. I could choose HIM and remain with Him alone. My heart instantly felt relief and freedom again. My friend, you are not trapped either. Reach out and grab His hand and allow Him to pull you close.