November 18, 2008

Encounters with God

Nice! This is where we spent our weekend and it was so relaxing!!!
Something has been stirring within me lately and I hate that it takes me so long to get back to you here... because I feel as though I should choose what to focus on and edit my thoughts so as not to bore you! I would love to go through a few key questions/comments that have come from our Supernatural Power of a Transformed Mind study, and I would love to share a vision/conversation that I had with the Lord over my weekend away... I will attempt to do both and still try to keep this brief... (you can pray now, if you like!) LOL! I just wanted to share a few encounters with God that I have had lately... first, in the Word through this study, and secondly, during our weekend getaway!

So - my original plan was to just post a short little summary of what we covered for each week... obviously I have not yet done that - so I will try to catch up here and then (hopefully) post each week from here on out... I just want to give a few highlights of the past couple of weeks... of course, the best part of the study is the conversations and prayers that are shared during our meeting - but here are a few things written in my journal:

If "on earth as it is in heaven" is the will of God, how do we recognize when Heaven is coming to earth? Much has been done over the centuries and called 'God's will," but how do we know what God's will really looks like?

God's will looks like exactly what Jesus did (and still does through us - if we're willing!)

Jesus is the revelation of God's will. He showed us what Heaven (where the Father's will is perfectly expressed) looks like on earth. Since Jesus is the revelation of the Father, list some aspects of God's character that you see in Jesus.

They really ARE 3 in 1... every characteristic of the Father is seen and made known in and through Jesus! He is the glory of God, the divine & has the fullness of the Father in Him. He is Love and Mercy and Grace! He is Power and Forgiveness and Restoration. Every good thing we see in Jesus - IS the Father! (This so reminds me of The Shack!)

John 14:12 clearly links believing in Christ with doing His works, and here in this passage, as throughout the Book of John, Christ is specifically referring to the miraculous works that the Father gave Him to do as signs of His divine appointment. The promise that our faith would lead us to even greater works is huge! Why do you suppose believers have a hard time receiving this promise in faith?

Because we are not even doing the works that He did - so the idea of GREATER WORKS is impossible to grasp! However, His early ministry was limited to just Him (and then Him and His disciples) and for just 3 years... but now we DO His works on a greater scale - still, when we begin to heal the sick, cast out demons, and raise the dead, we'll begin to have faith for GREATER WORKS!

Do you think that the failure to believe what Jesus promises in these verses is the reason why many who would call themselves 'Christians' don't get commissioned to fulfill the 'primary mission' of destroying the works of the devil?

I think that we tend to make the call smaller - so we can achieve it! We make it 'doable'! I think many lose sight of the fact that we are not just saved FROM some things, but that we are saved TO some things too!

Just a few nuggets to think on...

Now - on to our weekend away! We had such an amazing time! We always do! We look forward to this trip every year! We go with two other couples that we have a long friendship with! We have been through good times and bad and have the most important things in common! It is our own little Retreat of sorts. We can count on hours of laughter, games, walking, shopping, golfing, visiting, praying, worshiping, studying, and good food - every day! So - it is no real surprise that the Lord would speak to me during these trips - because He is always invited in and given room to move! I have had what I call 'snapshot' moments all year long... those moments in time where you really just sort of freeze frame whatever is happening and on purpose drink it all in and store it away; where you give thanks right then and there for the blessings in your life! I had a few over the weekend as well, but it was specifically during a time of worship that I really felt His Presence and knew that He was with us. I closed my eyes in worship and began to see this picture unfold before me. I saw Jesus in the living room with us, and He was so excited to be there with us! He was spinning around the room, looking very much like an excited little boy - grinning from ear to ear! I said, "We've come to worship You Lord!" and He said, "and I've come to bask in your presence!" I thought, what?! That just isn't right, Lord! I have come to bask in YOUR presence!? He replied, "You heard me right... I have come to spend time with you and bask in all of your presence! Yes! This is it!!! THIS is My heart and a picture of My will and desire for you! This is My Body - My Kingdom come - this Friendship and Fellowship is SO Who I am and what I'm about!!! We went on to sing, "Who is like our God?" and He seemed almost giddy and said, "Who is like YOU?! There is no one like YOU! I created you and there is no one like you!"

This weekend was a blessing because the only expectations were for us to gather - to love, to laugh, to have fun & relax... these, too, are expectations He has of and for us! These alone! He said, "There are no expectations - but for good and simple RELATIONAL things! This is my Kingdom come - on earth, as it is in Heaven!"

He is SO FOR us!!!

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