2018: Walking In His Fullness

A lot of us experienced quite a bit of turbulence in 2017. The end of my year was quite unsettling and to be honest, left me wondering and questioning if I had heard some things correctly. We all have that and the Lord is perfectly fine with our questions.

He had given me a word to soak on for a good part of 2017 for 2018. That word was “Fullness”. I felt overwhelmed with His goodness with all He was showing me regarding this word. Walking into His Fullness for the New Year; what a great and exciting thing! I know it is still that amazing goodness that we will be walking in because tied to that is His Full Restoration; restoration for all that was lost and/or stolen, especially familial relationships. He is going after His family this year. All those shattered and impossible relationships will find His restoration.

Another part of this truth of walking in His Fullness is that sometimes, it’s experiencing His Presence in the midst of the hard stuff. It doesn’t always mean grief and loss, but Fullness means All Encompassing. We have to understand and experience this so we can fully walk in it. Our final sentence at the end of the day still has to be, “I trust You.”

“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are you ways My ways…” Isaiah 55:8 (NKJV)

 

I had a brief dream the other day that I felt led to share.

In this dream were several people, we were standing and looking around at each other and our surroundings. There was countless people surrounding us, the majority we all knew one way or another. We also had a slight look of uncertainty on our faces, but as we looked, we noticed this giant chain link in our right hands. The Lord immediately gave me a prophetic word to speak to these individuals. He said, “You have held hands with many through many seasons of your life. You will continue to seasonally hold others’ hands, but right now, in this moment, you will know whom I am linking you to. These links are for My Divine Connections, the covenant relationships that will tarry with you as I move you up and onward. You won’t have any question who those people are as I will make it obvious for you.”

This is so important for this New Year! We are going to see the Lord move us at an exponential rate in every aspect of our lives and His preparation in and around us will be in place! Things may seem or feel a bit chaotic, but His Peace will surround you and bring clarity to every moment and situation He is bringing you to and through.

I kept seeing the number 32 yesterday. Anytime that happens, I know the Lord is trying to tell me something and He took me to Isaiah 32:17-18. The verses made think of years 2017 and 2018. For all the things He is bringing us to this year, you will have His perfect Peace.

“The fruit of righteousness will be peace; the effect of righteousness will be quietness and confidence forever. My people will live in peaceful dwelling places, in secure homes, in undisturbed places of rest.” Isaiah 32:17-18 (NIV)

 

 

The Pen is Blue!!

The other day, Mark and I were talking about how times come when you feel you’ve reached a peace over life and circumstances, over dreams and future plans, and then all of a sudden, doubt and fear of disappointment try to cover over all of it. As we were discussing this, a scene in the movie “Liar Liar” came to my mind.

If you’re not familiar with this movie, the basic synopsis is that this lawyer’s son makes a birthday wish in that his dad cannot tell a lie. So, as this unfolds and the lawyer is discovering that he can’t lie, he goes in his office, grabs a blue ink pen and tries to say that it’s red. He then tries to write out that it’s red; all ending up in failure since both avenues are lies.

As I was sharing some things with Mark, I started to talk about this specific scene in relation to the Promises & Purposes over our lives. These things, which we were specifically created for, ARE the blue pen. They are THE TRUTH! There is nothing we can say or do to change the fact that they are truth! However, when we lose sight of that, when we allow doubt to take a hold, when we cover it over with our fear of being disappointed, we try to change it. We think it’ll be easier to just say that it is “red”. These things that seem so impossible, are in fact possible, because it’s not you that has to make it happen. All you have to do is come into agreement and say, “Yes, Lord! Here I am, send me!”

I know this is a difficult thing to actually do. I know how hard it is to keep a hold of Faith and Hope. So many of us have dreamt big dreams and been left in the dust of disappointment. I know. But, the Lord wants you to know that now is the time to hope again. Now is the time to shake off past disappointments. He will not disappoint you. When your hope is IN Him, when your faith is IN Him, you will know that His plans, His purposes over your life are going to be overwhelmingly fulfilling! He gave you those dreams to inject your faith with immeasurable hope! Fight off the doubt. Fight off the fear of disappointment. Hold onto His promises and His word. These things WILL BE!

 

Exodus 14:14 “The Lord will fight for you and you shall hold your Peace.”

Romans 8:25 “But if we hope for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with perseverance.”

Romans 8:28 “And we know that ALL things work together for good to those who love God, to those we are the called according to His purpose.”

Jeremiah 33:3 “Call to Me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know”

Hebrews 11:1 “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”

In the Name of Love

Heart Upon Re-entry

“Heart Upon Re-entry” by Jim Carrey

So many people have been wounded and abused in the name of love. I have been sensing that a lot just don’t even know what it truly is anymore. It has been downgraded and perverted in so many ways. It has been used as a weapon for verbal, physical and sexual abuses; so much so, there is a large group of people that have simply sworn off “falling in love” and put up walls so high and deep for protection.

A good majority of people have been duped by the entertainment industry into what they think love is: an expectation of frilly, feel-good “love” that leaves you with this floating, euphoric feeling all the time. Although there may be brief moments of that, it’s not real love. Real love isn’t necessarily a feeling. You do feel it, but most of the time, you have to make the choice to love. Sometimes that choice is going to be the hardest one you will ever make. It is way below the surface. I like to compare it to the ocean. The ocean is breathtaking when you’re standing on the shore looking at it; especially during a sunrise or sunset. It’s peaceful to sit and listen to the lull of the waves. It’s fun to swim in the refreshing waters. It’s thrilling to catch waves on a surfboard. BUT, the depth of its beauty is deep below the surface. You have to dive deep into it, you have to be prepared for it, and it can be intimidating and scary. But, the awe-inspiring beauty is worth it.

“…but for Adam no suitable helper was found, so the Lord God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep…then the Lord God made a woman…and he brought her to the man. The man said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called ‘woman’ for she was taken out of man” for this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh. The man and his wife were both naked, and they felt no shame” (Gen. 2:20-25)

When we partake of this surface-type “love”, it is guaranteed that at some point you will feel chewed up and spit out. When this happens there’s a part of you that blames yourself, leaving you feeling less than worthy of the something beautiful you were hoping and dreaming for. So now, each time someone new comes along, you swim in more shallow waters. This in turn pushes the other person away because there is a lack of trust. The baggage from the first swimmer is put on the next. It’s a vicious cycle and no one comes out feeling empowered, loved or free. Participating in all the things intended for marriage will always leave you empty and a piece of your soul connected to someone that doesn’t want the connection anymore. Thankfully, our God is one who Loves to Restore and Heal ALL things; especially our broken hearts.

I’ve now been married for almost 18 years. Our marriage is like every other (honest) one; like a roller coaster. Full of thrills, scares, unexpected turns, ups and downs. Several years ago, I went through a period that I just didn’t know what I felt anymore. My life had shattered into pieces and left me not recognizing how broken I was. Unfortunately, my husband took the brunt of my mess. Despite the mess I was, he showed up and walked out and fought for his unconditional love for me. See, I was such a jacked up mess that I didn’t even know how to accept his love and tried to push it away. When you’ve convinced yourself that you’re not worthy of something deep and meaningful, you settle yourself and wait for the other shoe to drop. If you don’t go beyond the fun beginning, then you don’t have to start sacrificing yourself. Real love is sacrificial. It’s compromising. It’s merging your life’s hopes and dreams with your spouse’s and sometimes some of those things don’t line up the way you imagined they would. Real love is searching out multiple avenues of communication to ensure your spouse is hearing and receiving in a healthy way. We all have an individual language and when we become One in our marriage commitment, we have to find a new language the both of us can speak and understand. This new language is created through some blood, sweat and tears; well, at least it was for us. Some of you might still be in denial because “everything is awesome”! When I had doubts of “my choice”, the Lord showed me it wasn’t really my choice, but His. He gifted me a husband that would be the manifestation of His unconditional love for me, through all my ridiculousness, my brokenness, in my mess, in my self-loathing and in all the beautiful moments of my life.

This isn’t all about marital love. Marriage is just one facet of Love.

I’ve learned unconditional love from my kids, too. This parenting thing is so much harder than I ever thought it would be. For a lot of my younger years I was told I’d never be able to have children, so I settled quite easily on not wanting children. I wasn’t heartbroken over it at all. But then again, I was a hot mess and didn’t know it. Then, I got married, and after a few years I started having that “twinge” to want kids. We now have four children and they all leave my head spinning and show me daily how much more of my flesh needs to die. I have likely apologized more than I’ve taught. But, like most parents, I would move Heaven and Earth to protect them and do everything in my power for them. God, our Heavenly Father, loves us unconditionally, even more than we love our own kids.

I had a long, hard road to be able to call on God as my “Father”. Every single one of us grew up with flawed parents and it’s guaranteed that every single one of us will be a flawed parent. Not one of us gets out of this parenting game with a perfect score. Some of our mess-ups create wounds and scars and I had some from my childhood. Because of that, I had a hard time thinking about God as my father because I was comparing Him to my earthly father. Now, I need to state that I love my dad unconditionally; no matter the ups and downs we’ve had over the course of my life. God is a restorer of families because family holds His heart more than anything else.

So, when we compare our Heavenly Father to a downgraded and flawed version, we’ve missed it. That’s where my struggle was and that’s where the Lord met me on my healing journey. Showing me who He truly was and He continues to do this. He moved Heaven to open up the way for us to experience Him as our Daddy. For a long time, I couldn’t understand why my Mom called God “Daddy”. Today as I write this, now I know. We all have a craving deep in our souls to have a meaningful and fulfilling relationship with our Dads (Mom’s too). There’s something powerful that happens when your Dad speaks encouragement over you and when he declares his love for you. This is what God our Father does. Reading His words of adoration for His creation and His children is indescribably fulfilling and empowering. You learn who you were created to be. You find your purpose in this crazy life. Without getting too political or polarizing, there’s something that has to be said. This is just my observation and opinion (there, you have my disclosure). My generation and the generations following, there is a huge deficit of fathers. I see SO many people that unbeknownst to them, they are searching out for that kind of love and acceptance. They’re seeking and continually landing on downgraded, abusive and perverted versions of the real thing. It absolutely shatters my heart. There are people everyday that are around you suffering from ignorance of what love truly is. We all need it, we all crave it; we were created from love and for love.

I’m so desperate for others to experience the transformative power of unconditional love.

When I say, “I love you all”, I absolutely mean it. You are loved and valued; you have a purpose and plan over your life that you were created to fulfill. Everything has purpose for your purpose and we walk into that from a place of love. I pray you have a pure encounter with this breathtaking, unconditional love.

I will leave you with a couple of scriptures that speak about this.

Psalm 139:13-16 “For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful. I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before on of them came to be.”

John 3:16-17 ”For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him.”

1 Cor. 13:1-13 “If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophesy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing. Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails….but when perfections comes, the imperfect disappears. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me. Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part’ then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known. And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

Song of Solomon 8:6-7 “Place me like a seal over your heart, like a seal on your arm; for love is as strong as death, its jealousy unyielding as the grave. It burns like blazing fire, like a mighty flame. Many waters cannot wash it away. If one were to give all the wealth of his house for love, it would be utterly scorned.”

Eph. 3:14-19 “For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom His whole family in Heaven and on earth derives its name. I pray that out of His glorious riches He may strengthen you with power through His Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge – that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.”

Wrestling Jacobs

“22 And he arose that night and took his two wives, his two female servants, and his eleven sons, and crossed over the ford of Jabbok. 23 He took them, sent them over the brook, and sent over what he had. 24 Then Jacob was left alone; and a Man wrestled with him until the breaking of day. 25 Now when He saw that He did not prevail against him, He touched the socket of his hip; and the socket of Jacob’s hip was out of joint as He wrestled with him. 26 And He said, “Let Me go, for the day breaks.”

But he said, “I will not let You go unless You bless me!”

27 So He said to him, “What is your name?”

He said, “Jacob.”

28 And He said, “Your name shall no longer be called Jacob, but Israel;[a] for you have struggled with God and with men, and have prevailed.”

29 Then Jacob asked, saying, “Tell me Your name, I pray.”

And He said, “Why is it that you ask about My name?” And He blessed him there.” (Genesis 32:22-29)

 

Jacob’s promise was peace with his brother that he had wronged. He was journeying back because the Lord promised him reconciliation. And, then fear came at him. He sent blessings ahead of him to decrease the fear coming at him. In his solitude, the Lord appeared. Jacob grabbed a hold of Him and wrestled for that promise. This promise meant everything to Jacob. To him, it was worth the struggle, the pain and the exhaustion. “I will not let go until you bless me”, as in “do what you promised!” Not only did the reconciliation happen, he was given a new name; a new identity as an entire nation.

The promises and dreams over our lives are only a glimpse into the fullness of what the Lord has planned for us. We’re not contending for selfish desires, we’re contending for all that will be affected by our dreams being fulfilled. It has been and will always be Kingdom and for His Glory; our lives reflecting His Love and Goodness! It’s too big and too good to give up on! Don’t quit! Keep wrestling! Morning is coming!!!

Memorial Sacrifice

Memorial Day (here in the USA) is a day to remember all our service men and women who have laid down their lives for our freedom. Their blood on the battlefield has been payment for the freedoms we live under in this country. My admiration for these people and their families is and will always be indescribable.

When we are in love with someone, we think about them all the time. Since this past holiday weekend, I couldn’t help but think about Jesus laying His life down for my freedoms as well. The freedoms that transcend the place I reside in; these freedoms gifted to me go so far beyond. They give me peace in the midst of storms, provisions in my needs, love for the “unlovable”, forgiveness for everything not apologized for, forgiveness for myself and all the things I’ve ever said and done, an eternal freedom in Heaven when my time is done here on this Earth. This freedom is like a breath of the fresh air on the first day of spring, breathing in all the fragrance of the budding flowers and grass; all the new life coming into bloom. His willingness to give up His life for me so that I can experience these freedoms leaves me blown away every moment of every day.

Then, I’m left with this question for myself: Is there anything in my life that I’m willing to lay down in sacrifice for Him? When you’ve been blessed with a freedom like this, you want to do something to honor it. Not because you have to or because it’s required, but because your heart is filled with gratitude. How has my life honored this? Am I just enjoying the freedoms or am I truly honoring it.

I wrote about this in a previous blog post (Net-Breaking Blessing) that I’m constantly being reminded of. This story about Simon Peter (Luke 5:1-11), a fisherman by trade, had been out all night long trying to bring in a harvest and was grossly unsuccessful. Pulled his boat to shore early that morning, cleaning off the nets and closing up his day and likely full of frustration and discouragement, is now asked by Jesus to use his boat. He then gets Jesus on his boat, puts out a bit from the shore and Jesus preaches a message to all who were following him. After the message, Jesus tells him to go out into the deeper waters and cast his nets on the right side of the boat. After a long night of unsuccessful fishing, the last thing I’d want to do is more fishing. But, he did it and not only did Jesus fill the nets with fish, they were in such abundance the nets were breaking and the boat was sinking! Once they got to shore, Simon Peter was in awe of this miraculous thing that had just taken place. Jesus spoke purpose over him and Simon Peter’s reaction was to leave his blessing right there on the shore to follow Jesus into an unknown future.

I share this to say, what have we sacrificed out of our adoration of Jesus and the blessings He’s gifted us? How could we become fishers of men if we hold onto the blessing for ourselves? How would we gain wisdom without trials? How would we grasp a hold of peace if it weren’t for storms? How would we recognize the amazing and lush greens of our Promised Land if we hadn’t experienced the elements of the desert? The thing we have to continually sacrifice is our flesh. Our flesh wants the fruit from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil when wisdom tells us the Tree of Life is all we truly need. Our flesh wants the blessings without sacrificing some comforts to become all the Lord has called us to be. I suppose Simon Peter could have still been a fisher of men while enjoying the spoils of that net-breaking haul, but I don’t believe he would have been as successful as we was. He still would have reached lives, but not at the level of impact that he had. No matter our choices, the Lord will use us. It’s our choice to learn and understand Heaven’s accounting. Simon Peter became more blessed than that load of fish. Wholly blessed, inside and out, not just isolated to his bank account.

So, my challenge is this: to be willing to lay my life down in sacrifice, walking away from what appears to be the blessing I’ve been praying and hoping for; realizing that if that is so amazing, He has something so much better in store. We have to strive not for the blessings, but for the purpose He has on our lives. It’s not about me, it’s about Him working through me to reach the ones who haven’t met Him yet. Becoming “fishers of men” in this life.

Net-Breaking Blessing

net-breaking

Luke 5:1-11

“One day as Jesus was standing by the Lake of Gennesaret, with the people crowding around him and listening to the word of God, he saw at the water’s edge two boats, left there by the fishermen, who were washing their nets. He got into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, and asked him to put out a little from shore. Then he sat down and taught the people from the boat.

When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into the deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.”

Simon answered, “Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets.”

When they had done so, they caught such a large number of fish that their nets began to break. So they signaled their partners in the other boat to come and help them, and they came and filled both boats so full that they began to sink.

When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at Jesus’ knees and said, “Go away from me, Lord; I am a sinful man!” For he and all his companions were astonished at the catch of fish they had taken, and so were James and John, the sons of Zebedee, Simon’s partners.

Then Jesus said to Simon, “Don’t be afraid; from now on you will catch men.”

So they pulled their boats up on shore, left everything and followed him.”

 

I don’t think I could begin to count how many times I’ve read this scripture. And then try to add in how many times I’ve heard someone speaking about this passage. It’s countless.

BUT, as I was reading this scripture this week, something new jumped out at me.

These guys, after a full and unsuccessful night of fishing, on shore washing up their nets, were asked to get back in their boat to give Jesus a platform to speak from. I can only imagine how exhausted they were, but they provided that platform.

I can also only imagine how important it was that they catch something. This was their provision; their way to pay the bills. So, I’m also certain that in addition to their exhaustion, was a fair amount of disappointment, worry and stress.

At this point in the story I began to reflect on current life. Am I willing and obedient in the midst of my lack, frustration and/or stress? Honestly? Not 100% of the time.

They listen to Jesus’ lesson, he finishes then tells them to go further out to sea and drop their nets. I’m telling you that would be the LAST thing I’d be willing to do. “I just cleaned these nets”, “I’m tired”, “we just fished ALL NIGHT LONG”, etc… RIGHT?

Obediently, they did what Jesus told them to do. I think their obedience had a slight tilt on what happened next, but I just know that it was mostly because of how awesome God is! He loves His kids and craves to meet our needs.

I can only imagine the adrenaline rush that came as their nets started to snap, as the boats started to sink with this overwhelming supply! A supply I’m certain they desperately needed. Most likely that type of catch you hope for, dream for; the type of catch that would most definitely take care of all things. No more lack.

I think it’s safe to say, this answer to their needs and prayers was met with an Ephesians 3:20 answer: “Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us…”

They received this net-breaking blessing with excessive joy, then with humility, repentance; he then recognized his brokenness. When you’re initially broken, you don’t feel worthy of much. I know how those shoes feel. I’m sure that’s why Jesus’ first comment was “don’t be afraid”. He was saying, there’s no judgment here, I’m not condemning you for anything. Now, here’s your purpose! “You will now be fishers of men”! Whew!

They received the largest blessing they’ve ever had, got to shore and left it all to follow Jesus.

Here’s where I got hit with the revelatory brick.

The question that immediately came to my mind as I read was this:

“If I blessed you with all you’ve prayed for, would you walk away from it to do something I’ve not yet asked you to do?”

You see, I’m sure the majority of us have had at least one prophetic word spoken over our lives, at least one vision; a glimpse into His plans for us, a dream that we’ve carried for our entire life. If in this moment, you received this answer to prayer, the prayer you’ve travailed over, soaked your carpet in tears over, fasted for, fought for, been alienated for, believed for was instantaneously given to you; would you set it down and walk into an unknown, undreamt, not prophesied, but God is speaking it to you in that moment where He wants you to go, would you do it? I think we would all say yes, but it definitely comes with a little bit of pain, right? We’ve got some serious skin in the game when it comes to our hopes, dreams, plans and purposes that we believe are on our lives. Maybe this is where some immaturity in my relationship is shining through my cracks. I know I would say yes, but it would be a teary-eyed yes. Yet, in the same breath, I know Kingdom principles. I know that if He asks me to lay something down, He has something better in store. If He wants me to give something away, I do, because I know He will provide for all my needs.

If we are truly surrendered to His perfect purpose, plans and provisions for our lives, the things we plead for really shouldn’t be of any consequence if we are to give them up at His request. It’s fine to take ownership of those things and contend for them to manifest, but they have to remain fluid for Him to do what He plans with it. It has to remain His, for Him, for His Glory.

You see, Simon could have said, “That’s cool, Jesus. I’ll pass on the message of what you just shared, we’ll catch some folks for Heaven while we work our day jobs and hey, thank you so much for this awesome blessing!” He could have stayed comfortable in what he knew was a certain thing because he had this net-breaking, boat-sinking blessing they just hauled to shore. But he didn’t. He laid it all down and walked into unknown territory. This blessing that initially meant everything to him instantly became fluid; dispensable, once he knew his purpose; his identity.

I’m sure there was a twinge of fear leaving all he knew behind and walking into places and doing things he’d never done before, but He had Jesus. Jesus is the real treasure; the true and tangible, net-breaking, boat-sinking treasure. No dream come true, no financial provision, no success in business will ever compare to Him. Just say “YES”!

The Feasting Table

feasting table4

I’ve had a sense that a lot of us are feeling heavy, worn out and/or discouraged in this particular season. There are so many awesome promises being spoken over the Body of Christ. There are even more words of encouragement, dreams, visions and prophesies being spoken! It is all extremely exciting!

I believe the heaviness I’m feeling is from the group of us that although we’re claiming these promises, nothing seems to be manifesting for us. Let me say this; this is where the rubber meets the road. Either you’re going to be up for the journey or you’re not. I’m up for it and I have been reminded of some faith walks in the Bible. Abraham’s faith walk was a journey up a mountain to sacrifice his biggest dream; his answered prayer, his son, Isaac. Shadrach, Meshach & Abednego’s faith walk was straight into a fiery furnace stating that they believed God would save them, but IF NOT, then it’s in God’s ultimate plan. Did they fully know God’s plan for their life? No. Did they trust in it? Absolutely.

I know in my heart what the Lord has spoken to me & over me. What I do not know is how or when that will manifest. So, when weeks like this come about, I hold onto those promises a lot tighter in the midst of my doubt and frustration. I read them over and over and speak them out a little bit louder. And then, without hesitation, the Lord takes me back to Psalm 23. What amazing Peace!

I’ve always been a bit of a strong-willed person and with that strong will comes a little attitude. Taming it to an appropriate level is still a work in progress! But, because my Daddy knows me so well, He highlights scriptures like Psalm 23 to speak calm, trusting peace over me. I always get hung up on verse 5, “You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies.” I always picture this in my head.

I will try to describe what I see every time I read this.

Picture a massive feasting table. It’s covered with any food you could ever want to eat. Surrounding this table are huge chairs. As you sit in your chair, you look around away from the table and all you see are faces you don’t recognize but you know whom they are. They are all the lying words that were ever spoken over you and to you. They are the ones sent to place doubt into your mind. They are the ones telling you that you will never be more than what you are. They are the ones telling you that you aren’t good enough to call yourself a Christian. They are the ones telling you that your dreams are foolish. They are the ones speaking judgment, condemnation and rejection because of your past mistakes. All those reminders of who you used to be BEFORE you were invited to sit at that Feasting Table. They’re sitting and screaming all of these things.

Here’s the beauty of sitting at that Feasting Table: Although you can see them, you have no fear. Although you think you should be able to hear their screams, their words cannot reach your ears. The Feasting Table is all about Peace. When you’re at peace, nothing shakes you. When you’re at Peace, you’re at rest.

I don’t know about you, but when I’m enjoying a good meal with good company, I am kicked back enjoying every moment and every joke. If it weren’t bad table manners, I’d kick my feet up onto the table! And, that’s where my “attitude” comes in. Not in a full-on arrogant way, but in a way to show and say to the enemy, “Whatever, man! Try all you want, you aren’t getting to me. I know who and Whose I am, so even though you’re trying to get to me, it won’t work and every moment I live from this time forward, you’re going to regret messing with me!” That’s when I pick up my food, kick my feet up onto the table and laugh! It’s a beautiful thing!!

The next best thing is what comes after this. While you’re at the resting, trusting, peaceful Feasting Table; He anoints us. When we are at peace inside His Will, His Plans for our lives, He pulls us closer, whispers wisdom to us, gives us more details of what He has planned for us to do and our cup overflows. He over-answers our prayers and blesses us in ways we never dreamed.

So, to all of you weary and heavy-laden, I give you this: Find your way to the Feasting Table. There you will find rest, peace, restoration, redemption, joy and victory over all that is surrounding you.