Category: Inspiration

Peaking your desire, enthusiasm & courage to do/be something

Serving Our Own gods

#1 in the series

It’s hard for me not to see our progressive society of today (2023) and how closely it aligns with the pagan societies of days gone by. “Commonly accepted ideas – God does not exist, the Bible is not divinely inspired, all religions are equally valid, absolute values of right and wrong do not exist and there is no such thing as sin, were all expounded by pagan philosophers.” (1)

And don’t even get me going on the acceptablitiy of adultery, fornication, homosexuality, pornography, and infanticide – secular humanism dominates our society today my friend, and could also be called – neopaganism.

According to the Pagan Federation paganism: (4)

  • is not dogmatic
  • pursues their own vision of the divine as a personal experience
  • represents a rich diversity
  • refuses to judge others ways of life as wrong because they’re different
  • respects all life
  • follow a polytheistic or pantheistic nature

Paganism has become a god of our society and many have chosen to serve it, as their own god, not even knowing the full ramifications.

As people today serve their own gods, let’s define some of those beliefs-

  1. Monotheism – the belief that there is only one god
  2. Polytheism – the belief that there are many gods
  3. Atheism – the belief that there is no god
  4. Agnosticism – the belief that the existence or non existence of a god is unknowable or unknown
  5. Pantheism – the belief and worship of all gods
  6. Panentheism – the belief that god and the world are interconnceted – the world being in god and god being in the world
  7. Animism – the belief that natural objects, natural phenomena and the universe have souls
  8. Paganism – spiritual beliefs and practices other than those of Judiasm, Christianity or Islam
  9. Neopaganism – new paganism developed from preChristian or anti-Christian religions

It is clear today we see these beliefs mixed in and around us. We see and know of people who hold these beliefs and are serving their own gods. This mixture of beliefs about god is what alerts us to the seriousness of our standing as a society, and as a nation even.

In 2021, Pew research found that 58% of Americans describe God as the God of the Bible. Another 32% believe in a god or spiritual power – although not that of the Bible. (2) And, 43% of millennials don’t know, care or believe that God exists. (3)

I am going on record to say that what you believe about God matters. It is not an incidential issue for you to deliberate at some future date in your life when you are more prepared, older, wiser or facing death. The god that you chose to serve matters now, as well in the life that is to come.

And lest you say, “I don’t serve any god, really”, let’s all be reminded that where we spend our time, money and energies reveals what our god is and who we serve.

If we are being honest, we just may find in our own life a mixture, the same kind of mixture revealed in generations past. One in which –

we fear the Lord, but serve their (our) own gods…”

2 Kings 17:33, 41 ESV

Throughout the Ancient writings we find that phrase – “feared the Lord, but served other gods“. In fact, over 40 times we find the phrase, “they served other gods”.There is a difference you know, between “fearing” and “serving” the Lord.

Because we are afraid or maybe even respect or revere the Lord, we “fear” Him. But it is more like a kid fears when Dad comes home, because he knows that is when he will be punished. We are fearful of the Lord and his judgments, so we do our best to appease Him, not because we love Him. We seek to appease Him but don’t bother serving Him.

At what point does that fear blossom into love? Should it? Can it?

That, my friend is the difference between monotheism and what all the other gods of this world have to offer.

You shall have no other gods before me. You shall not make for yourself a carved image … you shall not bow down to them or serve them… for I the Lord your God am a jealous God…”

Exodus 20:3-5 ESV

The Jehovah God, Almighty, Creator of all things, revealed in the Messiah – Jesus Christ is a personal, loving and relational God. Desiring to have personal, intimate conversation and exchange. This wonderful God, pursues us, longs for us, and is ever-present in our affairs, steps and amusements. He never leaves us, never slumbers in His watch over us, and is fearfully powerful, He could wipe us out in an instant. Yet, because He is love, His mercy is everlasting and His forgiveness endless. His ear is ever bent toward our cry and always listening for our hearts desire. He is jealous in His love for and toward us. Oh what wondrous love!

THIS God, is the great “I AM”, who is, who was, and who always will be. THIS God is Jesus Christ, He who said, “I Am He.” THIS is the God who you and I must must chose to serve – not just fear.

In these days, every man must choose the god he will serve. Fearing is not enough. Whom do you serve? Your self, your job? Money? Status? Prestige? God? Pleasure? Freedom?

We are living in days when men (women and children) are serving “their own gods”. What god are you serving?

I am not interested in serving my own, man-made god. Lord, please help me, remove my idols.

Debbie

Sources

  1. Tomorrow’s World, Douglass S. Winnail; 11.2019
  2. B. Mark Anderson.com
  3. Cultural Research Center @ Arizona Christian University
  4. The Pagan Federation – Prudence Jones

Who Do You Trust with Your Life?

One of the goals for me in 2023 in regards to my teaching videos is for them to be wise and easy to swallow, inspirational words. (Proverbs 13:2 TPT) Translation – short, easy to follow, revelation-knowledge posts.

These will be shared on other social media sites in their required formatting, but will also be shared here for you to glean from. Again, I trust that you will find inspiration and refreshment here Under Debra’s Palm.

Here’s our first video for the year –

Trusting Him through another year together,

Debbie

Heart Disease – It’s About More than You Think

Consider this your personal angiogram to start 2023

After the recent Damar Hamlin cardiac arrest on the field during his Monday Night Football game last week between the Bills and the Bengals, who hasn’t found themselves thinking about the heart? He was resuscitated twice they say, once on the field after 9 minutes of CPR and another time at the hospital. It was all horrible to watch and even worse wondering how he was doing after they took him off the field in an ambulance and later suspended the game.

It’s been over a week now, and he has been transfered to a Buffalo hospital, where he is talking, moving, laughing and walking around with seemingly no brain damage. He apprears to be on the road to full recovery. Some have called it a miracle. Doctors have called it “a fairly remarkable recovery.”

So, with that as our backdrop for the start of 2023, let’s look more into this issue of the heart, and heart disease, cuz there is more to it than you think.

Sudden death heart facts are:

  • 1 in 50,000 to 1 in 80,000 athletes will die suddenly in a year, and most are due to an underlying cardiac condition.
  • In those under 35 years this sudden death is generally from congenital or genetic conditions
  • In those over 35, sudden death is caused by coronary artery disease (due to atherosclerosos)

Coronary Artery Disease (CAD) is a very common heart condition and happens over decades, when the coronary arteries struggle to send food, blood and oxygen to the heart muscle. Their struggle is caused by the build up of cholesterol and other substances in the walls of the arteries. They form hard structures called “plaques”. Now, some amount of hardening is natural as we age, but unhealthy lifestyle habits speed up this “hardening of the arteries”.

Cardio vascular disease in the number ONE leading cause of death worldwide.

Hang with me here, we’re going somewhere, and it’s about more than you think.

As I’m sure you have heard, heart disease causes lots of complications – irregular ryhthms, heart infection, and stroke to name a few. (Not to mention death) And it often displays these symptoms: chest pain, shortness of breath, unusual fatigue or heart attack.

We also know that those with lifestyle habits of smoking, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes and obsesity are more likely to get CAD. In fact, in 2015, CAD affected 110 million people with 8.9 million deaths.

Doctors attempting to detect that hardening of the arteries (artery blockage), will perform a diagnostic test called an angiogram. Short version of how it works is – it takes xrays of the blood vessels that reveal where the blockage lies and shows just how big it is. I remember when my Dad had a heart attack. They showed me the angiogram that revealed 96% blockage! He died very shortly after that.

Phew, enough of the medical jargon already! Because it is about more than you think. Let me explain what I see.

I have come to see our nation and most of the inhabitants in it as having spiritual heart disease. Through unhealthy lifestyles of indulgence, their heart has hardened towards God and their life is showing signs of pain and pressure, difficulties catching their breath amidst their rat race life, and weariness in the daily demands.

But we hold within our power the ability to combat such hardening of the heart/arteries. If we are willing, we can exercise our will and discontinue the unhealthy practices. Just like we do when dieting, we clean out the fridge and cupboards, and replace them with healthy options.

Spiritual heart disease is no different. For long, healthy and happy life, we must remove those things that will build up in us and cause a hardening of our heart. Most importantly, instead of saying ‘No’ to God we say, “Yes”. Everytime we say no when God is speaking to us, hard “plaque” builds up in our spiritual heart. And if not dealt with, we become hardened in our disease of disobedience toward God, and will eventually have a spiritual cardiac arrest.

Just like Pharaoh’s heart was hardened in the days of the Exodus, people today have heardened hearts toward God and His ways.They actually refuse His healthy lifestyle options, and chose what they think is best and healthy for them. Not realizing it is a heart issue and their spiritual aterties in their spiritual heart are filled with unhealthy plaques. It is a heart issue, it is heart disease, my friend.

I find it no small coincidence that there are so many news stories about heart issues these days. Be they young people dying suddenly, althetes, vaccine controversies, or whatever. There is an emphasis of the Holy Spirit in 2023 on the condition of our heart. Heart disease is about more than you think, it is about the spiritual condition of your heart towards God.

Have you become hardened towards God or is your heart disease free and one that is soft and sensitive to Him and His voice?

Which of these describe your heart?

  • Plaque causers
  • discouraged heart Num. 32:7
  • obstinate heart Deut. 2:30
  • hardened heart Exodus 19 x
  • naughty heart 1 Sam. 17:28
  • a heart of stone 1 Sam. 25:37
  • pride & stoutness of heart Isa. 9:9
  • deceit in his heart Pro. 12:20
  • wicked heart Jer. 4:4
  • stiffnecked and uncircumsized heart Acts 17:51
  • err in their heart Heb. 3:10
  • Healthy heart –
  • willing heart Ex. 35:5
  • upright heart Deut. 9:5
  • inclined toward God Jos. 24:23
  • wise and understanding heart 1Ki. 3:12
  • penitent 2Ki. 22:19
  • not a double heart 1 Ch. 12:33
  • courageous heart 2 Ch. 17:6
  • tender heart 2 Ch. 24:37
  • clean heart Ps. 51:10
  • contrite Is. 37:15
  • a heart to know me (God speaking) Ezk. 11:19
  • a new heart Ezk. 36:26
  • good heart Lk. 6:45

I pray, that as we begin this new year, these thoughts will serve as your own personal angiogram and maybe even shock your heart to a reset for a healthy spiritual lifestyle in 2023. (Like an AED -automated external defibrillator does.)

Heart disease (spiritual and natural) will cause complications in your life and will often reveal signs and symptoms, too. Wise is the one who will pay attention to the symptoms of your own spiritual heart disease.

God’s patience and grace is upon us now, but it will not always be so.

Let’s be wise and heart healthy.

Happy and healthy new year,

Debbie

Resources:

  • Verywellhealth.com – Sudden Cardiac Deaths
  • Mayo Clinic Coronary Artery Disease
  • The Gullen Report 11.22.22 Sudden Death on a Massive Scale
  • Sudden Death Mystery of Healthy People
  • NBCnews.com – “Evidence grows Stronger”, Erika Edwards
  • The Holy Bible

Seeing Things From a Different Angle

As we embark on another trip around the sun, I will be taking these first 2 weeks to prayerfully consider our direction for 2023.

Therefore, I have selected to share this encouraging video again, in hopes that it will encourage you as you set out in this fresh new year.

May you have new eyes to see how He wants to use you this year.

Lord. open our eyes to see…

Debbie

Dream Big in 2023

A New Year’s Challenge for You

I know of a man who was extremely wealthy and a highly influencial politician; in fact he came from a family of monarchs. He was very well connected within his country and with the surrounding countries.

He was not a particularily nice guy, in fact he was quite wicked. He had some evil practices, one that included child sacrifice – actually sacrificing his own children. This guy was was an odd mix of prestige, evil, and wheeler-dealer.

At one point in his life he actually had two kings plotting against him and his kingdom. He was facing extermination, as was the royal line. His whole kingdom was panicing as their hearts were overcome with fear due to the damage that had already been inflicted on their nation.

In response to this impending attack, he chose to survey his city’s vulnerable spots and so he started at the water supply. It is there that we hone in on Ahaz and what happened next. It is there we find a new year’s challenge for you to DREAM BIG!

It is there that the prophet Isaiah (and his son) meet with Ahaz, to deliver to him God’s message. Knowing what you know about Ahaz now, what would you expect God’s message to be?

Believe it or not, God gave Ahaz four assurances. We find them in Isaiah 7:4.

  1. Be careful
  2. Be quiet
  3. Do not fear
  4. Do not let your heart be faint

Knowing Ahaz’s pending conflict and the people’s fearful panicing, knowing the kingdom’s devestation already, God tells the prophet to tell Ahaz to be careful and be quiet. Think of it. God was saying, “Settle down, calm down.” God was telling them all to not be rash or impetuous, but to take a deep breath and chill out for a minute. Stop, collect yourself and settle down.

He went on to tell them the number one salutation to humans in the bible – Do Not Fear. Don’t look at the two armies, don’t look at the devestation, don’t look at the circumstances. Do Not Fear.

Then Isaiah tops it off by telling Ahaz to not allow his heart (or the people’s heart) to be faint. He tells them to guard what their heart feels, and believes. He encourages them, comforts them, and offers them peace and hope.

But that’s not all. After Isaiah delivers that hope to Ahaz and the people, he goes on to tell them more of what God says to them. He tells them that the plans of the two terrorist countries (that are after them) –

… shall not stand, and it shall not come to pass.”

Isaiah 7:7 ESV

He continues by saying that within 65 years, they (the terrorosts countries) will be defeated themselves. That’s remarkable, foretelling the future to Ahaz! Hang in there dude, they’ll be gone soon. Settle down and trust me. Wow. But then, there’s another dinger –

If you are not firm in faith, you will not be firm at all.”

Isaiah 7:8 ESV

Isn’t it interesting how God responds to Ahaz in his time of fear, trouble and uncertainty. First He gives him assurances, then He shares the futute and finally He reminds Ahaz, to be strong in faith. A-MAZE- ING.

That would be a trememdous story if it ended there. We all could take lesson from it, find encouragement from it and recheck our faith. We could be confident that God was still with us, even in our not so nice state, and we could be thankful that God was still talking to us in spite of our wicked ways. We could be encouraged that God was in charge and could be trusted.

But there is yet another incomprehensible offer that God gives to Ahaz. You won’t believe it –

Again the Lord spoke to Ahaz, “Ask a sign of the Lord your God: let it be deep as Sheol or high as heaven.”

Isaiah 7:11 ESV

God was still wanting to encourage Ahaz that He was in control and told him to ask for a sign to prove it. Basically, God was saying, think big Ahaz, dream big – think outside the box. Go as deep as hell or as high as heaven. Ask me for a sign, no matter how big or hard you think it is. Ask. Dream. Go for it.

Remember that little lesson from above about being firm in faith? Ahaz should have remembered that now. Here Ahaz was being offered a blank cheque for any kind of miraculous or crazy sign that he could think of. Go big or go home, Ahaz. Now’s your chance. Call on your faith and God’s ability and let’s see something wonderful, something miraculous. God wants to prove Himself to you. A-MAZE- ING!

And here is where Ahaz proved his alliance.

He refused God’s offer to dream big, he refused to ask any sign of God or “put God to the test.” v. 12 His lame excuse of “putting God to the test” was evidence of his own alliance against God, and later proved to reveal his alliance with a terrorist country. (Which was eliminated in 65 years, as God said.)

Ahaz’s refusal to dream big at God’s request resulted in the destruction of his country and the extinction of his royal blood like. Ahaz heard God’s call and chose not to answer, obey or follow through. Ahaz proved he did not trust God or in God’s ability to deliver his nation. Ahaz did not believe that God was in control, he believed in man’s abilities and the Assyrian war machine.

My friend, I believe with all of my heart, that God is saying to YOU at the beginning of this year, “Ask a sign of the Lord your God.” Make it a big one, outside of the box of hell and heaven – think BIG. Dream BIG. Use your faith, stand in it and ask BIG.

This year, amidst the turmoil, uncertainties, financial stresses and political unrest, God would say to you – be careful, be quiet, do not fear and don’t become fainthearted. He sees you, He knows your situation and need, He knows your heart and deeds. He offers you peace and hope.

And He says to you, Ask me for a sign….as deep as hell or as high as heaven… Let me prove myself to you. I am in control and I love you. Place your trust in Me and not in man. “If you are not firm in your faith, you will not be firm at all.”

Dream Big this year, my friend.

Debbie

2 Christmas Time Births – a Voice and a Savior

I want to wish you a very Merry Christmas, this 2022.

During this wonderful season of Christmas I’d like to encourage you with three thoughts from that very first Christmas.

#1 Mary and Joseph lived in the days of Herod the Great. He was a cruel puppet king over Judea who brutally killed family, friends and foes indiscriminately. The land feared his edicts, and were severly oppressed by his unfair taxes and decrees. It was not “Happy Days” living during this time.

#2 Zechariah and Elizabeth, childless priests, were told they would give birth to John the Baptist – the voice. Thinking that they were beyond the age of being birthing parents, nevertheless, they bore a son named John, who grew as a prophet and became the voice pointing to Jesus.

#3 Mary, the young, favored and overshadowed virgin, was chosen to bring forth the Savior of the world. With questions in her troubled heart and mind, her response to the angel was to allow the Holy Spirit to empower her to bring forth what had been planted within her.

What this means to you, today:

#1 These days that we live in are wrought with fear, oppression, increased taxes and ungodly decrees. And if we were to look only at the rulers in the political arenas it would be easy to grow weary and become discouraged. But like Mary & Joesph’s days, this is the exact time that God will bring forth good from evil, light from darkness, a voice and the Savior.

#2 Alive right now, are many godly believers/priests who have yet to see the fulfillment of the promises that God has spoken to them. They are ripe now and ready to bring forth their promised VOICE to the world. The roaring voice from deep within them, that of a lion, pointing to Jesus – the way. This is a season of the release of the VOICE of the people of God.

#3 The seemingly impossible circumstanes you face, the troubled heart and questioning mind within you will all be overshadowed by the power of the Holy Spirit. That power will ignite to life the seed of the Heavenly Father within you and produce the Savior – Jesus. YOU, will burst forth, with the life of Jesus and you will share that life with those in your world.

You see, Christmas time is the season of darkness and oppression that produces a voice in that wilderness that points to Jesus, the only Savior of the world.

Are you a voice pointing to Jesus or are you a carrier of Jesus? Both are birthed at Christmas time.

Merry Christmas,

Debbie

Preparing For Your Exodus #4

Part 4 – God’s Last Straw

Although my head tells me this should be a Christmas blog, (I am writing this Dec. 20 after all), my heart knows we need this very important part 4, and next week’s conclusion, before the new year is upon us. All of this, is a very firm Word in my Spirit for this next year.

So, where are we?

We’ve been looking at the setting for the great Exodus from Egypt led by Moses, as found in the book of Exodus chapters 1-6 and understanding the many similiarities between what happened to them then, and what is happening and about to happen to us in these days. Please catch up, as you wish by reading the previous 3 blogs:

  1. #1 – God Sees
  2. #2 – God Shows Up
  3. #3 – God’s Signs

As we pick up today’s portion we find Moses and Aaron going before the Pharaoh of Egypt-

Afterward Moses and Aaron went and said to Pharaoh, “Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel, “Let my people go, that they may hold a feast to me in the wilderness.”” But Pharaoh said, ” Who is the Lord, that I should obey his voice and let Israel go? I do not know the Lord, and moreover, I will not let Israel go.”

Exodus 5:1-2 ESV

Notice, God wanted freedom for His people. That is His desire for all of us, to be free from slavery. But Pharaoh didn’t know God, so he refused. In fact, in Egypt, it was he who was considered a god, a child of the Sun and friend of the gods.

Moses and Aaron came before Pharaoh in the authority they had been given by the Lord God of Israel. They spoke those words as a reminder to themselves and all listeners that their words would be acted on by that very God.

Pharaoh’s refusal was an attempt at exerting his own authority over God’s. But God’s response was, these things will happen so that you will know me, the God of Israel and you, too, will obey my word. You don’t know me now, Pharaoh, but you soon will, because I will set my people free.

With this dueling authority, the gauntlet is laid.

I must insert here, there is no authority greater in your life than the Lord’s. Whether you know Him or not, His desire is to see you freed from sin’s slavery and make His power and name fully known to you and the world. He will be known as the Omnipotent Creator.

Things from here on out get worse for the Israelites. In fact, things got much worse before they got better. They were expected to keep making their daily quota of bricks but now, because of Pharaoh’s fury, they were to do it without being given straw. If they wanted straw, they had to get it themselves.

Finding straw of course, took more time, which prohibited them from producing the same amount of bricks. And so, because straw makes for stronger bricks and because of it’s acid content helps the mortar stick together better, they went off to find straw, roots, and other things to mix in for their bricks.

Archaeology confirms that bricks of all kinds have been found in Egypt. Some have chopped straw, rough roots and other odd things. Some have been found that have no straw at all.

The results of Moses first visit were defiance and further hardship. The trouble that came upon the Israelites seemed like evil. The immediate effect was to make it worse. What God allowed made it seem even worse. The Israelites couldn’t believe making things worse could be part of God’s plan.

There are times in our life and in the life of our society that is seems things are getting worse and not better. Trouble increases. Authority duels are obvious in many areas of life. Our workload is unfairly increased and our God seems absent.

Things commonly go backward with the saints before they come forward, so the corn groweth downward ere it grow upward.”

John Trapp

“It is the darkest before the dawn.”

The Israelite leaders blamed Moses.”You’ve put a sword in their hand to kill us”. The people, in their trouble called out to Pharaoh for help- not God, or even Moses. Pharaoh seemed like a friend when they were his slaves. In the previous chapter, they believed God was with them, but now their excitement was gone.

But Pharaoh was cruel and did not care about them. He called them names, insulted them, commanded more work and allowed no time for religious duty to God. He punished them for it and for even wanting it.

Even Moses, with his insecurities ressurfacing, asked God,

O Lord, why have you done evil to this people? Why did you ever send me?… You have not delivered your people at all.”

Exodus 5:22-23 ESV

From their perspective, their world was topsy-turvy.

God, however, does not see as man, nor are His ways like man’s.

God is interested in way more than just freeing Israel. He knows they need transformation to become His people, fit for the Promised land. He knew they needed to learn endurance, patience, and complete trust in Him. He knew defeating Egypt’s evil would not come quickly or easily. And He knew their faith & trust would come with countless opportunities for surrender and obedience.

What He was interested in was them trusting Him in their trouble so He could use it for their good and His glory.

No Israelite was exempt from this. Not Aaron, and not Moses. Moses’ fears of inferiority came rushing back when things got worse not better. He still doubted that he was the right guy – Why did you ever send me? He hoped the liberation would be easy and now that is wasn’t he doubted who he was and whether God could really use him. (he’s not anything like us, right? ha ha )

God was working through the trouble, hardship, and worsening conditions to produce a people who would trust Him and His ability to use them for good and His glory. 2 Peter 4:12-14, 19; 3:8-9, 14-15

There was blame enough to go around, but God deserved none of it.

He was seeing beyond the immediate, to the long term victory. To the wandering and complaining years, To the warring and possessing years. To the reigning and prosperous years. To the years it would take for these people to be His people. To you and I. To our struggles. To this day. To our times. And to eternity, when His son would have for Himself a spotless Bride, fully devoted to Jesus.

The the Israelites and their leaders believed that God had done evil to His people by allowing such trouble. They believed because it was getting worse and not better, it could not possibly be God’s will.

But these events in Egypt were demonstrating God’s last straw. The straw that would set in motion a massive exodus. For them, then and I believe for you now.

God is at work in our nation, and although it appears things are getting worse and not better, let’s let Israel remind us that He is at work in the now and for the long term. He is preparing us, transforming us and equipping us.

We are facing the days of God’s last straw in our lifetime. The days of His preparation for our exodus from slavery into complete liberty. But first, we must learn to trust Him and be wholly confident in Him and obedient to His voice.

Don’t lose heart as things get worse. He’s working on us in the midst of things getting worse, preparing us for our exodus.

Submitting to His fashioning,

Debbie

Preparing For Your Exodus #3

Part 3 – God’s Signs

In this third of our five part series, you will see how God chooses to use you in bringing deliverance to others and helping them to believe. But first He will give you signs that will scare you, encourage you, and teach you to listen to and obey His voice.

These thoughts are based on Moses and the Exodus account you will find in Exodus chapter 4.

After “God shows up” (in Exodus chapter 3 & our previous lesson), we find Him telling Moses that he has been selected to be the comissioned leader and carry His name to lead His people out of Egypt into the land God promised to give to the Partiarchs, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.

Moses is given a project, one of seeming impossibilities, with ridiculous odds of failure, and that required 100% faith and focus on God. Moses questions whether he is up to the task and responded to God with a series of questions all of which revealed his doubt in God’s decision.

Moses first said to God,

BUT they won’t believe me or listen to me…”

Exodus 4:1 ESV

I love the BUTS of the Bible, they reveal so much about humanity and God’s amazing dealings with us. Moses doubted that anyone would listen to him. Who was he afterall? Here he was just a shepherd going before the King of Egypt with all of his powerful magicians and political advisors.

God answered Moses, “What’s in your hand?” The same thing that God asks of us, “What’s in your hand, Debbie?” “What’s in your hand _________ (your name)?” Moses was holding his shepherds staff.

“Throw it down” Moses was told. And when he did, it turned into a snake and scared Moses away. Then God spoke again to Moses and told Him to pick up the snake by the tail. Which Moses did, and the snake turned back into Moses’ staff.

“What’s in your hand?” is how God uses people. He uses what people have. The years of sheep tending were not wasted for Moses. He didn’t need a scepter to go before the King, he needed his staff. He needed what God had put in his hand, because God uses what is in our hand. (Check out Shamgar, David, Sampson, and the little boy with fish and bread.)

The staff turning to a snake was not part of Moses everyday experience, and so it was a sign given as confirmation to Moses of God’s power to use what God had given him, but it was also a sign that the people would believe.

After running away from the snake, Moses learned to listen to God’s directions and to take it by the tail – the most dangerous place. Moses learned how to do what God told him to do even if it was dangerous and uncomfortable. Moses learned that God could transform something good into evil and back again, IF Moses would trust and obey the voice of God.

Then, what Moses held in his hand was called the rod of God! And with the rod of God, Moses would eventually part the sea, strike the rock and defeat the enemy in the valley.

Sign #1 – Staff to snake – Watch what God will do with what’s in your hand

God uses what you have in your hand. Your years of doing it, your experience, your skills, your heart and your dreams. Nothing is wasted. You need nothing more than faith in what He has given you. Faith that will trust Him with uncomfortable encounters, maybe even dangerous ones, but faith that you are doing what you have heard Him say to you.

When you decide that in your heart, and take action, you begin to move in a new freedom but so do those that God has sent you to. The signs are for you and for them too, to believe!

You would think that one sign was enough to boost Moses’ confidence in God. But God gave Moses another sign in which his healthy hand became leprous and then was restored to full health again. This sign was again to reassure Moses of God’s total and unstoppable power to restore even the most disgraceful, shameful, and horrible sin and disease in his life. God was saying, trust me Moses, to use ALL that you are – even the diseased and broken parts.

Sign #2 – The leprous hand restored – God will restore and use even our diseased and broken parts

There is no sin or shame God will not forgive or restore you from and use for His glory. He will do it as a sign for you to believe in and fully trust Him, and He will use you to share it with others so that their hope can be restored and they will believe in the power of the Almighty God.

But God is not through giving Moses (or you) signs.

He next tells Moses to take some water from the Nile and pour it on the ground and it will become blood. Guess what happens? Yup. He does and it does.

Blood always represents judgment. God’s message here was that if transformation didn’t work (staff to snake and hand to leprosy) then perhaps judgment would convince them to believe.

Sign #3 – Water to blood – God will bring judgment to the land

Our land, like ancient Egypt will face judgement. Our lives will face judgment and the Blood of the Lamb will cover and protect us during this time if we believe. The purpose of the blood is to make believers.

After these three persuassive signs, Moses still objects by saying –

I am not eloquent… I am slow of speech…”

Exodus 4:10 ESV

Let’s be real here, Moses had spent the first 40 years of his life being trained in all the wisdom of Egypt. Acts 7:22 The real issue for Moses was his confidence was gone! That was way back then and now, he only spoke sheep talk. And while we’re being real, he’s not really complaining about his speaking ability but his inability to be a leader to God’s people.

Even though God had promised to be with him, and teach him what to do and say, Moses was comparing himself to those smart guys in Pharaoh’s court and coming up on the short end. Which is all we need to understand that Moses’ focus was in the wrong place, on himself and not on God. God provided Aaron, to be the speaker for Moses and promised to teach them both.

Sign #4 – God provides us the support we need – because He sees more in us than we do

Who of us has not dealt with a lack of confidence? Especially when we see a task before us with seemingly impossible odds of failure and requiring more faith than we think that we have? And yet, God, who hears the groans of the needy around you and the cries from the lonley, broken and lost who you come in contact with – provides for you all you need to bring them to faith, by means of your faith.

Lastly, here’s the bottom line of this long story.

After these 4 signs, and Moses listing disqualifications, doubts, and lack of confidence, he reveals the real issue in his heart. Without anymore excuses cuz God has dashed them all to pieces, Moses says to God –

Please send someone else…”

Exodus 4:13 ESV

This made God angry. (v. 14). You know why? He was angry at Moses’ unwillingness not his questions or doubts. Moses revealed, by this request, that he was unwilling not unable.

Sign #5 – God reveals what’s really in our heart – He uses the willing heart

Whatever it takes, God will whittle all of our excuses down to reveal our willingness to obey His voice. When all is stripped away, are we willing to do what He has called and equipped us for?

God has demonstrated by these signs that He can and will work with what He has created. He will first deal with our own doubts and insecurities showing Himself strong on our behalf so that WE believe. Then, he uses us to affect other people’s beliefs.

God is intending a tremendous exodus of people from bondage into freedom and fulfilling of His promises. He has been preparing you for this exodus by hearing your desires, showing up in your life, and revealing signs like these to you, verifying His desire to use YOU!

What’s is your hand? Allow Him to restore the broken parts of your heart and judge you in His love and mercy. He has provided all you need for victory and deliverance if only you are willing.

Joining you in following His voice,

Debbie

See you Next week for #4 God’s Last Straw

Preparing For Your Exodus

Part 1 – God Sees

This is one of those times I write under the impact of what I hear The Spirit saying to us – to you and me, to believers, and to our nation.

He is preparing us for our exodus, our depatrure from things as we know them, our going out and being set free from our oppression and affliction.

With that theme in mind, it is clear that we can look at the ancient exodus of Israel, after their 430 years in slavery, and draw some comparisons and parallels. So, from now ’til the end of the year, in a 5 part series, we will look at and draw those comparisons with the intention of inspiring you to see that now is the time for you to prepare for your exodus.

The overriding theme of the book of Exodus is God fulfilling His promise to the Patriarchs to make their descendants a great nation, (despite the oppression of the world’s greatest superpower (Egypt) and their own unbelief and disobedience.) Their exodus was so impactful, Israel’s national identity and even their calendar reoriented around the month that they came out of Egypt. And, their success was totally ascribed to God’s power and God’s character, not their own power, or weak and godless character. (So too, will be our exodus and the display of God’s power.)

As we begin this comparison, let’s start right there. What God is preparing to do is fulfill His promises to raise up His Church, His Ekklesia, despite economic forums or governmental overreach, who will walk in relationship to the Omnipotent God and reveal His character here on this planet, wherever they are. This will be so impactful it will change national identities, and will be marked on all calendars as The Great Outpouring and Harvest.

My friend, this is a personal freedom being offered to you. A freedom from years of oppression and bondage. A freedom to walk in the fullness of God’s promises fulfilled and God’s power revealed. This isn’t some imaginary or delusional hope, this is what God has promised to those that believe Him. He is preparing us for our exodus.

In Exodus 2:23-25, we find our first lesson, preparing us for our exodus. Here’s what it says,

During those many days the king of Egypt died, and the people of Israel groaned because of their slavery and cried out for help. Their cry for rescue from slavery came up to God. And God heard their groaning, and God remembered his covenant with Abraham, with Isaac, and with Jacob. God saw the people of Israel – and God knew.”

It is clear from these verses that God sees exactly what the Israelites are going through and have gone through. God sees. In fact, there are four facets listed here to God’s seeing.

  1. God hears
  2. God remembers
  3. God saw
  4. God knew

God Hears

God hears the groaning because of slavery. God hears the cries for help. God hears the cries for rescue. God hears the prayers offered up to God. Whether it be 3,468 years ago by the ancient Israelites or today, by the Yahweh believers around the world, God still hears.

With believers increasing mightily and threatening governmental leaders, like Pharaoh, taskmasters have been appointed to burden down with heavy loads the people of God. Still the faith filled ones prosper, despite the oppression, all the while the taskmasters treat them ruthlessly.

Making their lives bitter and forced into hard service, even releasing a death decree to kill babies, the Egyptian magistrates dreaded the Israelites, just like many of our governmental leaders make our lives bitter and decree death to our babies. Their dread tho’, will not keep us from multiplying in strength and numbers and faith!

God hears. He sent Moses, the one drawn out of the waters. And so it is, God hears us, and is preparing to send yet another drawn out remnant to free those suffering from bondage. God hears.

God Remembers

God remembers. He is not forgetful like an old person, or dull because of age. He is sharp, precise, and fully cognizant of all He has said and promised. He remembers His covenant with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob to make their descendants a great nation with countless sons and daughters. They will not be defined by years slavery, but by their covenant with God.

  • Abraham’s covenant – Genesis 12:2
  • Isaac’s covenant – Genesis 17:15, 21
  • Jacob’s covenant – Genesis 26:3-5

God is a God of covenants. He is a God- keeper of agreements. A fullfiller of promises. He is not a man that lies. If He said it, He will do it. Numbers 23:19 He remains faithful, even if we are unfaithful because He cannot deny Himself. 2 Timothy 2:13 God remembers!

God remembers that He made you for a specific purpose. God remembers the plans He has for your eternal happiness and hope He has for your eternal fellowship. He remembers the giftings, skills, and even weaknesses He put inside of you and He remembers all of it is being used to fashion you into a highly valued and treasured vessel of honor for Him. God remembers that He is not done with you yet.

God Saw

God saw the people of Israel. The whole mess of slavery, bitterness, oppression, ruthless rulers, death decrees, and unjust treatment. God saw the worldwide mess of Covid, the harsh treatment, the fruitful years in rapid decline. God saw the favor turned to fury. God saw the big picture, not just the immediate.

God saw the victory, freedom, blessing, and fulfillment that lie ahead. God saw it all. Past. Present. Future. He is The Great I Am.

God Knew

God knew. He knew their suffering and He knew their deliverance was coming. God knew that the promised land lay ahead. God knew it was a fruitful place, full of provision and enemies. God knew their future. God knew what they had. God knew what they needed. God knew what lie ahead. God knew their successes and their failures. God knew.

In what ways are we any different? In what ways is God different? Is He not the same yesterday, today, and forever?

As we approach this new year, I believe it is time to prepare to exit the past years of oppression, bondage and silencing. A new season of promises fulfilled, God’s people rising up, and God’s power revealed in signs, wonders and miracles.

He has seen our situation and is redirecting our focus to His powerful deliverance. It will be epic, because our nation, like Israel is in crisis.

Rest assured, God Sees! And when He sees, He hears, He remembers and He knows. Our God sees a massive exodus of sons and daughters, walking in His miraculous power and fully dependant on every Word that proceeds from His mouth.

This is what He is preparing to do in our nation and the nations of the world. This is what He is preparing to do in and through His people, the followers of Yahweh. The land of promises lie ahead to those who are preparing themselves for the exodus.

In continuing preparation for our exodus, please check back for the next 4 parts of this series.

  • God Shows Up 12/10
  • God’s Signs 12/17
  • God’s Last Straw 12/24
  • God Says NOW! 12/31

Before you go, please remember that God sees everything that you are going through and He has heard your cries for help. He remembers well all He has promised you and He sees it happening because He knows your victorious destiny.

God sees YOU, and He is preparing you for your exodus.

Debbie