Entries tagged with “God encounters”.
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Mon 12 Dec 2011
Advent is an important season in the Christian calendar. It consists of the weeks leading up to Christmas, which is the celebration of the birth of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
The word ‘Advent’ is derived from a Latin word, ‘adventus’ which means ‘coming.’ 
Advent is a season of preparation and expectation.
Christmas Advent Today
In our culture, it is easy to lose the wonder and anticipation of Christmas Advent.
For many of us, preparation means the pressure of buying gifts, planning menus and events, or tying up loose ends at work.
Expectation consists of mixed feelings as we anticipate the positives and negatives of having family with us—or absent from us.
If you can relate to this, I urge you to take some time to allow the Holy Spirit to minister to your heart.
The weeks leading up to Christmas can be busy and distracted.
I don’t want my life to be like the inn at Bethlehem—so busy accommodating everything and everyone else that I turn Jesus away at the door. 
The Challenge of the Original Advent
Zachariah was the father of John the Baptist. Mary was the mother of Jesus. Their lives, and many others at that time, were changed forever by the coming of Jesus.
Let’s take a few moments to consider what Advent meant to those involved in the birth of our Saviour—and what following Jesus Christ may also mean for us today.
For Zachariah, it was business as usual—performing his occasional duties as a priest in the temple.
Mary was a young woman whose life was already mapped out. She was going to be married to Joseph, a carpenter from her hometown of Nazareth, in Galilee.
But their ordinary lives were suddenly interrupted by a message from the throne of God, brought by the angel Gabriel.
Am I willing for God to interrupt my ordinary life? Am I open to hear what He has to say to me at this time?
‘Do not be Afraid’
As I muse over the Christmas narrative, I see the words ‘Do not be afraid’ mentioned many times—to Zachariah, to Mary, to Joseph, and to the shepherds.
‘Do not be afraid’ encapsulates the Christmas message. It speaks hope and life into my present circumstances.
But it also deeply challenges me. It tells me that encountering God, and contemplating His demands upon my life will require something from me.
And that this ‘something’ will be so costly, and this encounter with Him so awe-inspiring, that the reaction of my soul will be fear.
Am I willing to encounter God, knowing that it will require something of me?
The angel Gabriel’s announcement changed the landscape of Zechariah and Mary’s lives forever.
It marked a point of no return. Making room for the coming of Jesus would mean that their lives would never be the same again. It would bring both joy and sacrifice.
Am I willing to make room for Jesus in my life—even if it means moving or giving up other personal priorities?
Crisis of faith
When the angel Gabriel announced God’s plans, he received different responses from Zachariah and Mary.
Zachariah’s doubt cost him his voice for a season. But not even unbelief could halt the progress of God’s plans.
What is my personal response to God’s purpose for my life? Am I doubting—or trusting His word?
Participation in a Greater Plan
Zachariah and Mary were just two of a company of people whom God used to make way for the first coming of Jesus.
At the birth of his son John, Zachariah caught a glimpse of God’s purpose—the salvation of the world through Jesus Christ.
‘And you, my child, will be called a prophet of the Most High; for you will go on before the Lord to prepare the way for him, to give his people the knowledge of salvation through the forgiveness of their sins, because of the tender mercy of our God, by which the rising sun will come to us from heaven to shine on those living in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the path of peace.’ (Luke 1:76-79)
As we respond to the call of God to make room for Jesus in our lives, we too will become participants in God’s plan of salvation.
By making room for Jesus in our personal lives this Christmas and beyond, we are opening the door for our families, our friends, and those near and far to encounter the Good News of salvation.
Advent is a season of preparation and expectation.
Today, let’s pause from the busyness of our schedule and ask the question,
‘When it comes to my life of faith right now,
What am I preparing for?
And what am I expecting?’
Do you have any experiences or questions to share on this topic? I would love to hear from you. Leave a comment in the comments box below. If the comments box is not visible, click on this link and scroll down.
 For more information on Advent, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Advent
 See Luke 2:7, Rev 3:20
Hunger For God: 6 Ways You Can Stir It Up
Angels Herald Jesus’ Birth And The Beginning Of A Supernatural Era
How To Recover The Wonder Of Hearing God’s Voice
© Helen Calder 2011 Enliven Blog – Prophetic Teaching
On team with David McCracken Ministries: Prophetic Ministry That Empowers The Church
Tue 26 Oct 2010
Have you ever been told some exciting news and then asked not to share it with anyone?
You are bursting with it. Even if you keep your mouth shut, your expression may give it away. You may be distracted, or find it hard to keep still. You search your mind for someone—anyone—you can safely share the happy news with.
Last year my brother called from London, to share the news that he and his wife were expecting their first baby. The Hunk received the call while I was out shopping and couldn’t wait to tell me.
By the time my brother located me—on my mobile phone—my squeal of joyful surprise was not as genuine as it would have been if he had shared it first. My delighted hubby had beaten him to it.
It is a universal law: good news just has to be given away!
The Ultimate Good News
To all who received [Jesus], to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God. (John 1:12-13)
As Christian believers, we have been entrusted with the ultimate Good News, the story of how:
- Jesus came to earth and died for the forgiveness of our sins, so that we could be restored in relationship to the Father
- He was resurrected that we might share in His life
- We enter into this new birth, not through anything we can do ourselves, but by faith in Him alone.
This is wonderful news, and all of would agree, truly GOOD news
And yet, many of us go through times when we are no longer excited about the good news of the Gospel. We have lost the urge to share it with others.
There have been times in my own Christian life when I have known in my head that the Gospel is good news, but my heart has lost the song.
In these seasons, I can look back and remember what God has done in the past, but I do not have a current testimony of God’s goodness.
When this happens, I am not the only one who is affected—others around me lose the opportunity to hear Good News.
The Power Of A Testimony
Jesus sent him away, saying, “Return home and tell how much God has done for you.” So the man went away and told all over town how much Jesus had done for him. (Luke 8:38-39)
God has designed that the Gospel be expressed through the vehicle of our testimony. When the two are teamed up, extraordinary power is released to lead people to faith in Jesus.
Our personal testimony stands as proof of the truth of the Gospel—evidence that it is life-changing Good News.
- The root word of testimony, ‘testi’, comes from a word meaning ‘witness.’
Our testimony provides a witness to others of what Jesus has done for us—and that what Jesus has done for us, He can do for them.
The story of how we first encountered Jesus and how our lives were changed when we accepted Him into our lives powerfully illustrates the Gospel.
But our testimony is not just the story of what took place when we first believed.
The ongoing stories of God’s Divine intervention in our lives have tremendous power to witness to others, as we talk about:
- How God impacts our lives every day
- Answers we have had to prayer
- What God has spoken to us
- How we have seen Him at work in our lives and in those around us.
Through this current testimony of God’s grace, we know, and others see, that Jesus is the only explanation for what is taking place in our lives.
As the Apostle Paul explained,
‘You yourselves are our letter, written on our hearts, known and read by everybody. You show that you are a letter from Christ, the result of our ministry, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God.’
How To Recover Your Testimony
Right now, I can’t wait to share with others all the good things I am seeing happen in my life and in the lives of others around me. However, it hasn’t always been that way.
Have you lost the fire? Here are some things that have helped me to recover a current testimony of God’s goodness:
1. Recognise that Something is Missing
If you can’t come up with an existing reason to be thankful about what God is doing in your life, something is missing.
We can always have a current testimony of God’s goodness in our lives, even if that testimony is of His empowering or His comforting word to us in the trials we are experiencing.
2. Meditate on What Jesus has Done for you
Take some time to meditate on what the Bible says about God’s love for you personally, as well as what Jesus has accomplished through His death on the cross and how it applies personally to you.
Remember your experience of salvation and how encountering God for the first time changed your life. Think about what He has done since, and about all of His faithfulness.
3. Ask God for a Fresh Infilling of His Spirit
Pray and ask God to fill you with His Holy Spirit. It is a prayer He loves to answer.
As you encounter Him in this way, you will fall in love with Jesus again.
Every time I have experienced a significant new infilling with the Holy Spirit, my passion for God and for people has been restored.
4. Take time to Listen—Receive a Word from God
To hear God speak to you is to encounter Him. He wants to speak to you about His love for you, His involvement in your past and present circumstances, and His purpose for your life.
5. Pray—and Watch for what Happens Next
If you are aware that you have lost the fire of your testimony, talk to your Father about it. Ask Him to move in your life, pray and then open your eyes. You will soon see Him at work.
We can’t give away what we do not possess ourselves.
When we recover a fresh and vibrant testimony of God’s goodness to us, the Gospel will be Good News to us once again—and nothing will hold us back from sharing it with others.
Do you have any more ideas or thoughts on this topic? I would love to hear from you. Leave a comment in the box below. If the comments box is not visible, click on this link and scroll down.
How To Be A Supernatural Christian: The Good News
Spiritual Renewal: Cafe Moments With God
The River Returns: How To Be Re-Filled With The Holy Spirit When You Are Dry
© Helen Calder Enliven Blog http://propheticpeople.com/
Now on team with David McCracken Ministries
Tue 27 Jul 2010
The thing I love most about teaching beginners’ classes in prophecy is that look of joy and amazement on people’s faces when they realise that they have heard God’s voice for another person for the first time.
We should never lose the wonder of hearing the voice of God—whether for others or ourselves.
But sometimes over the passage of time, familiarity, staleness, or just plain weariness can rob us of that sense of awe, joy and privilege.
Early last year I was burnt out and in a place where it was difficult to hear from God. But now, the communication—and the wonder—is back.
So, how can we retain or recover the wonder of hearing God’s voice? Here are a few suggestions:
1. Reflect on the Privilege and Power of Hearing God’s Voice
Adam heard the voice of the Lord as He walked in intimacy with Him in the garden. (Gen 3)
And yet later, Moses wondered that Israel had heard God’s voice and lived. (Deut 4:33)
Such was the destructive power of sin on humanity’s relationship with God that upon hearing God’s voice Israel cried out,
‘We will die if we hear the voice of the LORD our God any longer.’
The Power of God’s Voice
I have come to realise that the ability, power and strength of the voice of God is far beyond my capacity to perceive.
- Using His voice, God created the heavens and the earth
(Ps 33:6, Gen 1)
- God’s voice shatters His enemies (Isa 30:31)
- God’s voice is heard in creation’s majesty—the roaring of the waves, thunder and lightning, the events of nature (Ps 29)
John heard His voice like a trumpet (Rev 1:10) and as rushing waters (Rev 1:15); Daniel, ‘like the sound of a multitude.’ (Dan 10:6)
Paul was taken to heaven and heard ‘inexpressible things.’
Reflecting on this causes me to wonder.
2. Consider What Jesus Has Done
That you and I can hear the voice of God and live is a truth that demonstrates His incredible grace.
Jesus reconciled us to God through His death on the cross so that the voice that once threatened death to Israel can bring LIFE to us.
In John 10:27, Jesus said, ‘My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me’.
God desires an intimate relationship with you and I even more than we want it with Him—He created us to fellowship with Him and to hear His voice. He wanted it so much that Jesus paid the ultimate price.
And this causes me to wonder.
3. Remember it is About Relationship
When I was burnt out, it took me a while to realise that I had made the mistake of equating ‘listening to God’ with a type of performance—and I had nothing left to give.
I needed to get back to relationship.
Think about when the phone rings and you pick it up. How different are your responses when the caller is:
- A telemarketer
- Someone you love
You see it’s not about the Voice—but the Person behind the Voice.
When we are in love with Jesus, we look forward to hearing Him speak to us in our everyday lives.
4. Put Yourself in a Place to Encounter Him
We need to position ourselves to encounter God and hear His voice, and what that looks like will be unique to each of us.
For me, it firstly meant recognising and repenting of wrong beliefs that had trapped me in a lifestyle of performance.
I then rediscovered His grace.
It also meant being creative with my devotional life, trying new ways to journal, and discovering a new appreciation for the Bible’s personal message to me.
It meant paying attention to my ‘spiritual pathways’ and realising that spending time with God outdoors and with listening to fresh worship music helped me to personally encounter Him.
As I did these things—as I put myself in a position to encounter God—I began to hear His voice breathing life back into me.
5. Explore the Unique Ways the Holy Spirit Speaks
‘He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says…’ Rev 2:11
One day we shall look upon Jesus’ face in all His glory, and hear His voice in all its strength. For now, we hear Him speaking to us by His Spirit.
However, we need to realise that God speaking is not like a person speaking.
When we talk about ‘hearing God’s voice,’ we are using an earthly expression to describe a heavenly concept. We simply do not have a framework to understand it
You and I use words, speech and body language to communicate. However, the Holy Spirit has endless ways that He can communicate with us.
We hear His voice, not with our physical ears, but with our heart and our spirit.
Throughout the Bible there are many different ways God spoke to His people.
In the book of Acts alone, we see God speaking through prophecies, dreams, visions, angels, leaders, signs, the inner voice of the Spirit—and so on.
There are many ways in which the Holy Spirit can speak to you. Meditate on what the Bible shares about this and be open to hearing Him in new and fresh ways.
The Wonder Recovered
This year, my sense of wonder has returned.
During the past couple of weeks I have heard God speak to me personally in many ways:
- A conversation with my pastor that rocked my paradigm
- The words of a stranger who walked into our church for the first time
- A lone eagle in the sky during time out with God
- An insight from the Bible that has fed me for days
- Circumstances that could only have been orchestrated by the Holy Spirit
Last week The Hunk and I were ministering when I heard God’s voice for a woman in the room. As I shared the word, I watched her face change from defensiveness, to amazement and delight.
And right at that moment I fell in love with the Holy Spirit and prophetic ministry all over again.
Face To Face With God: Can I Have A Relationship Like Moses?
When your Devotional Life Is Dry: How To Fall In Love With The Bible Again
Spiritual Renewal: Café Moments With God
© Helen Calder Enliven Publishing
Now on team with David McCracken Ministries
Sun 20 Jun 2010
‘God is looking for men and women of maturity…
But there is no maturity because there is no birth.
There is no birth because there is no pregnancy.
There is no pregnancy because there is no conception.
There is no conception because there is no intimate relationship.
There is no intimate relationship because we busy ourselves seeking satisfaction apart from God.’
David Ravenhill 
I have kept an early edition of the Morningstar journal in my shelf for many years, for the value of the single paragraph above.
It speaks truth to something deep inside of me—a truth I find myself returning to regularly in my quest for spiritual renewal.
And that is, that at the heart of life-giving prophetic ministry—or any ministry, and even life itself—is intimacy with Jesus.
Face To Face—God’s Purpose from Beginning to End
We are created for a FACE TO FACE relationship with God. We see this at the outset—from the very moment of creation.
Genesis 2 V 7 says:
‘The LORD God formed the man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.’
Every other creature was created by the word of God, but God fashioned Adam from the ground and breathed life into him,
And from the moment of that very first FACE TO FACE encounter, Adam lived.
After Adam and Eve sin, in Genesis chapter 3, you see God walking in the garden in the cool of the day. It has evidently been His custom to walk and talk with Adam & Eve… FACE TO FACE, but now Adam and Eve have hidden their faces in shame from God
And you see throughout the whole of the remainder of Scripture, God is working, through His plan of redemption, to restore that FACE TO FACE relationship that was lost.
He accomplishes it by sending Jesus to die on the cross for the forgiveness of our sin. And there on the cross, in one eternal moment, THE FATHER TURNS HIS FACE AWAY from Jesus.
Jesus bore our sin, and the punishment of separation from God that was due to us, in order that our own FACE TO FACE relationship with God might be restored.
And even now, that process of restoration continues until the final fulfillment will take place when we enter eternity…
The Apostle Paul explains it like this in 1 Corinthians 13V12:
‘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.’
Even though the ultimate fulfillment of our FACE TO FACE relationship with God is in ETERNITY, God WANTS to share a close relationship with us now.
- It is the purpose He created us
- It is the reason Jesus went to the cross
And this being the case, I want to know what a FACE TO FACE relationship with God means. In the certain knowledge that I have yet more to discover, I also want to know what I am missing out on.
Responding To God
We cannot meditate on this truth without considering our own personal response. For me, right now, that is twofold:
1. Soaking—Taking time to Worship and to be Refilled.
When Jesus was resurrected, He met with His disciples and FACE TO FACE, He breathed on them, saying ‘Receive the Holy Spirit.’
Receiving His breath, His Spirit, His life, into us is an integral part of having a FACE TO FACE relationship with God.
For me that means spending time with God, with no other agenda apart from being with Him, receiving His Spirit, enjoying His Presence.
2. Conversing—Intimate Conversation with God
I am personally being challenged that God wants to speak to me FACE TO FACE a whole lot more than I have imagined He does. I recognise that doubts and fears have stopped up the flow of His voice, His revelation, to me.
So I will be digging into some journaling this week—with a specific focus.
Here are some ideas for how to do this, if you would like to join me:
- Start your journal with the words ‘Lord what do you want to say to me today?’
- A thought or idea may come to you immediately—in which case, start to write. But if not, wait for the Holy Spirit to give you a revelation—a picture/vision, a Bible verse or story, a word, feeling or idea. Write what you see or what comes to mind and also what you believe God is saying to you.
- Write your response to Him. You may even want to ask another question. It is your conversation with God.
Remember to weigh up carefully any revelation you receive. Keep up your regular Bible reading and always reflect on what you are receiving in the light of what God says in His Word.
 The Morningstar Journal Vol. 3 No.4 1993, ‘The Birthing of a Ministry, David Ravenhill.
Face to Face With God: Can I Have a Relationship Like Moses?
Activate Your Prophetic Gift Through Prayer Journaling
Spiritual Renewal: How To Receive An Impartation Of The Holy Spirit
How To Exercise Your Prophetic gift Pt 3: How Can You Tell Your Revelation Is From God?
© Helen Calder Enliven Publishing
Tue 2 Mar 2010
The week I didn’t talk to God
I didn’t talk to God for 5 days, following a powerful encounter with Him during the final session of a Healing Rooms training day.
It didn’t seem to be a remarkable moment, this rushed conclusion during which every participant was anointed with oil and prayed for.
What happened? Well, let me just say that childhood encounters with electric fences on my uncle’s dairy farm pale in comparison to what struck me in full force at that moment.
After 5 days of stunned silence, I thought I had better get back on speaking terms with the Lord—and only then because I was leading a prayer meeting at our church that evening.
I drove out to the beach, planted my feet in the sea and uttered just 3 words:
‘WHAT WAS THAT?’
The response was immediate, and very clear:
‘You asked for it.’
I had to admit, the Spirit of God had me there. I had encountered the power of His presence after praying a big, bold prayer. ‘Lord,’ I said, I’m not here for healing, and I’m not looking for a healing ministry, I want to help raise up an army of healers!’
When we pray for God’s Presence, do we know what we are asking for?
I believe it was Tommy Tenney who reflected on the annoying way that some small dogs chase after cars. What would the dog ever do if it caught the car? Does it ever enter its mind?
In the same way, we ask for God to move, and seek His Presence, but do we really know what we are asking for?
I have thought about this again this week, because The Hunk and I have experienced a series of miracles, and a heightened sense of God’s Presence.
I found myself overawed, conscious of an urge to draw back from Him.
When heaven invades earth, when God shows up, when miracles break out—we will not always respond the way we expect to, or would like to.
I draw reassurance from accounts in the Bible that show I am not alone in my weak and imperfect response to God’s Presence:
When God showed up:
- Moses and Gideon argued with God (Exodus 4, Judges 6:11-15)
- Saul was blinded (Acts 9:1-9)
- Daniel fell and lost his strength (Dan 11:15-18)
- The Apostle John was told not to be afraid (Rev 1:17)
When Jesus came to His disciples walking on the water, the disciples did not recognise Him, thinking He was a ghost! He told them not to be afraid, for they were terrified.
God does not always show up in the way we imagine, or at the time we expect.
If the greatest saints in scripture struggled in their response to God’s Presence, what makes me think I can?
The Unfamiliar God
God is not ‘safe.’ That is—He is not safe to our pride, our dignity, our sinful nature, our puny ideas or plans. He is more than we can handle and He is beyond our control.
In the Narnia Chronicles, C S Lewis wrote stories of the lion Aslan, King of Kings of Narnia. Aslan’s subjects had a saying about him: ‘He is not a tame lion.’ He was majestic, terrifying to his enemies and redeemer of his own, powerful and unpredictable. Yet the child Lucy would run to him with joyful familiarity and bury her face in his mane.
At times, I respond as Lucy did. At other times, struck by God’s power and unpredictability, I draw back. I have wandered into unfamiliar territory in my relationship with Him.
God did not disqualify Moses, Gideon, or His disciples, when they did not respond well to His Presence or the message that He brought them. Instead, He showed them patience and brought comforting reassurance.
As I recall these things, I do not feel so bad about my own response. I decide to receive His grace and reassurance too.
Ps 103:13-14 says,
As a father has compassion on his children,
so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him;
for he knows how we are formed,
he remembers that we are dust.
The challenge we face is to continue to press in, to continue to pray the bold prayers. To take a deep breath and be honest with Him about how we feel, that He is overwhelming, that we are not certain that we can take any more of His Presence, and yet are afraid that He will draw back; that we cannot live without Him, and yet need His strength to live with Him.
I think I will go and do that right now.
The Power Of A Prophetic Act
If you have any thoughts on this topic, or have had any experiences like this, I would love to hear from you. Click on this and leave a comment at the bottom of this post.
© Helen Calder Enliven Publishing
Tue 23 Feb 2010
Like Moses Did, You Can Have Intimacy With God
There is something compelling about the image of Moses speaking directly with God, standing with the cloud of God’s Presence at the entrance to the Tent of Meeting. (Ex 33:7-11)
- How did it feel to be that close to God?
- What did God’s voice sound like?
- What must it have been like to know that God wanted to spend time talking personally with Moses—sharing His own intentions and feelings?
Moses had an intimate friendship with God that no one else at that time shared. And yet, this relationship is available to each one of us, should we desire it.(John 15:15, 2 Cor 3:12-17)
It has been said, ‘you are as close to God as you want to be.’ A glimpse of Moses’ prayer life shows us the nearness to God that is possible.
Our word ‘intimacy’ comes from a Latin word meaning ‘innermost.’
An intimate friend is someone with whom we can share our deepest personal feelings. ‘INTO-ME-SEE’: Intimacy implies a high level of transparency in a relationship.
Intimacy is what Adam and Eve had with God at the beginning of creation, when the Lord walked in the Garden of Eden with them. Intimacy is what they lost when they disobeyed God’s word. (Gen 1-3)
Intimacy of relationship is what Jesus died on the cross to restore; hence, we know it is very important to God. (Gal 4:4-6)
As it has been said—‘If God seems far away, guess who moved?’
God has already done all that He can to restore intimacy with us. He is waiting for us to make the move towards Him.
5 Ways Moses’ Face to Face Relationship Challenges Me
As I contemplate Moses’ friendship with God, here are the truths that confront me:
1. God Wants to be Close to me.
The pillar of cloud moves towards the Tent of Meeting, where Moses has kept his appointment with God.
The depth of God’s desire to spend time with me, and the price He has paid to do so is beyond my ability to comprehend.
- I know He desires to be with me—too often, I move to meet Him hesitantly. Today, I choose to take bold, firm steps towards God
2. There is Always More of God to Encounter
Moses has a ‘face to face’ friendship with God. He speaks with Him in the cloud of His Presence. And yet, Moses is still dissatisfied with his current experience of God.
‘Lord, show me your glory.’ (Ex 33:18)
- There is always more of God to encounter; dare I, like Moses, request it—and what will happen when I do? Lord, show me your glory, increase my capacity to bear it.
3. Intimacy Involves 2-Way Conversation
Moses shares his concerns with God, but he also listens as God shares His own plans, thoughts, and feelings.
There is a place of intimacy, beyond the self-absorbed prayer I have known, where I can move from self-consciousness to GOD-CONSCIOUSNESS.
- I wonder—when was the last time I listened to God as He shared His feelings and plans? Lord, may I hear Your voice today.
4. A Friend or an Onlooker—I Get to Choose
The people of Israel stand at the entrances to their tents, watching in awe as Moses enters the Tent of Meeting.
The people of Israel were onlookers. They saw the distant cloud of God’s presence but did not hear the conversation. All they knew of God’s words were what they heard second-hand from Moses (Ps 103:7)
- Am I content with being an onlooker while others get close to God? …I say, ‘No’… I want to see You Lord, I want to hear Your voice for myself
5. Withhold, or Disclose my Inner World?
Moses does not hold back his thoughts, his grievances, his desires. His life is an open book to God.
I can open up my real inner self to God because I am safe with Him. Nothing is hidden from God, He knows all about me anyway. His grace is the remedy for my weakness, His forgiveness the remedy for my sin.
- God says, ‘Come to Me as you are.’ (Heb 10:19-22) Will I reach for more of the intimate relationship with God that Jesus has paid the price for?
**One day when my daughter was small, we were walking to church when it started to rain. I shrunk against the side of the building to avoid the damp; after all, the rain would spoil my hair. My daughter leapt out into the rain, her arms flung wide, yelling out, ‘I just want to get wet!’ That’s the attitude I want to have towards the Presence of God. The Kingdom is for the children (Matt 18:3)–will you join me?
The people of Israel stand at the entrances to their tents, watching in awe as Moses enters the Tent of Meeting. The pillar of cloud, which has been leading the people of Israel in their journey out of Egypt, moves towards the entrance of the tent. Now it stays, positioned at the doorway, while the LORD speaks with Moses
‘face to face, as a man speaks with his friend.’
Host God’s Presence and Change a Nation
Hunger for God: 6 Ways you can Stir it Up
Spiritual Renewal: Cafe Moments With God
© Helen Calder Enliven Blog – Prophetic Teaching
On team with David McCracken Ministries: Prophetic Ministry That Empowers The Church
Fri 15 Jan 2010
This week, The Hunk had to carry me out of a church service. I could not walk, because I was utterly overcome physically by the presence and power of God (I can only recall one other instance of a similar thing happening, around twelve years ago).
‘Do What it Takes to Get Filled’
Only four months ago, I was sitting overlooking a local reservoir that has been affected by our State’s drought. It was around 30% full.
The emptiness of the reservoir echoed the devastated state of my soul.
I had spent most of the year **not** recovering from ministry burnout. I mistakenly thought that taking extended time out and reducing my ministry responsibilities would help me get better. It didn’t.
A wise pastor who had himself been through burnout said to me, ‘Time doesn’t heal the problem. You need to intentionally do whatever it takes to get refilled again.’ As he spoke, I realised that one of those things, for me personally, was taking time outdoors to meet with God.
Being intentional about doing what it took to get refilled, spiritually and emotionally, proved a turning point for me.
How Am I Going–Really?
Jesus called His disciples firstly to be with Him, and then to serve Him (Mark 3:14). When we get the order of that around the wrong way, we get into trouble. I have learned this the hard way.
As we begin a new year, let’s reflect on this very important question:
- Am I filled, or depleted in my spiritual life?
A similar question that is also vitally important, is:
- Am I filled, or depleted in my emotional life?
It can be difficult to tell how used up the tank of your emotional and spiritual reserve is, until it is too late. This is where looking for external clues to your condition become important—a subject I may cover another time. (If you have questions or ideas about this, feel free to comment on this post or email me).
As Christians we can receive the gift of the baptism of the Holy Spirit, to empower us to be all we can be, and change our world (Acts 1:8).
However, we continually need a fresh impartation of the Holy Spirit if we are going to minister out of fullness (John 7:37-39). We also need to be acquainted with the Spirit if we are going to hear His voice and receive prophetic revelation that will break open situations and lead people to Jesus (John 14:26).
According to the Merriam Webster dictionary, the word ‘impart’ means ‘to give, convey, or grant from or as if from a store.’
Impartation implies a source. When that source is God, and our need is for His Spirit, we know He has an unlimited heavenly abundance that we can draw from. (John 3:34)
3 Ways the New Testament Church received an Impartation of the Holy Spirit are:
1. Directly from Jesus
Matt 10:1, John 20:22-23.
We can also receive directly from Jesus when we spend time with Him by having a healthy devotional life.
2. From God as they prayed
The Church received the baptism of the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost. However, this kind of praying and waiting on God should not just be a one-off experience. We see the church praying and receiving an infilling of the Holy Spirit again in Acts 4:24-31
3. Through the Ministry of Laying on of Hands
Acts 6:6, Acts 8:17, Acts 19:6
As effective as ministry with ‘laying on of hands’ can be, it should never become a replacement of our receiving personally and directly from God.
Also, it is our own responsibility to maintain the gift from God that this kind of impartation gives us. The Apostle Paul said to Timothy,
‘For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands.’ 2 Tim 1:6-7
How to Receive a Fresh Infilling of the Holy Spirit
The Apostle Paul’s present continuous use of the verb, ‘Be filled with the Spirit’ in Eph 5:18-20, indicates that being filled with the Holy Spirit should be our ongoing experience.
Here are some things that I have found useful to receive a fresh infilling of the Holy Spirit in my life over the past four months:
1. Doing what it took to be renewed in my devotional life
2. Being intentional about doing the things that connect me personally with God
(in my case, this included spending time in prayer and reflection outdoors, however it will be different for every person)
(Dictionary definition: To be immersed until thoroughly saturated.)
For me, this means taking time in God’s presence with no other agenda but to connect with and receive from Him. I find that intimate worship music is a great facilitator of this.
4. Receiving prayer from others (laying on hands) for a refilling of the Spirit
Has this worked?
Recently, I was again visiting the reservoir, when I noticed the difference: the emptiness of the dam no longer reflected my inner state. I knew I had been refilled. (Thank You Jesus). My response to God’s Presence in the meeting we attended this week demonstrated the overflow.
What are the ways that you can be filled with God’s Holy Spirit, and refreshed, spiritually and emotionally?
For related posts, review the Spiritual Renewal Category
Check back on this blog over the next couple of weeks as I will be discussing ‘Prophetic Activation through Journaling‘
7 Signs Of Spiritual Dryness
How To Discover Your Spiritual Pathway
The River Returns: How To Be Refilled With The Holy Spirit When You Are Dry
© Helen Calder Enliven Blog
Tue 20 Oct 2009
One of the best views in Victoria can be found on Panorama Drive, San Remo. Whenever I am passing through, I drive by to pause, admire the view and to smile to myself in amusement.
For the beneficiaries of this extraordinary view are neither wealthy homeowners, nor tourists, but a paddock of sheep—upon whom the view is both lavished and lost.
Jesus said to His disciples, ‘Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom’ (Luke 12:32).
Like the sheep of San Remo, however, we can only dimly perceive God’s Kingdom due to our earthbound state. God’s remedy for our condition can be found in ‘portal moments,’ those instances of unmistakeable, supernatural, divine intervention.
Portal moments can occur in the small passing moments of God-awareness, such as my pause of enjoyment at San Remo. But they can also occur in the larger breakthroughs of life.
We have portal moments when:
- God speaks to us personally
- Prayer is answered
- God’s intervention or guidance is the only explanation for something that has taken place
- We or someone else around us is saved, healed, or set free
Such portal moments are God announcing, ‘The Kingdom is here!’
When Jesus sent out His disciples, He instructed them, ‘Heal the sick who are there and tell them, “The kingdom of God is near you.”’ (Luke 10:9).
It was not only the message that gained the attention of people; it was the healing, miracles and the display of God’s authority over the demonic realm. The message and the supernatural demonstration of God’s power are supposed to go together. It is God’s way—and yet I have settled for much less than that.
Should we ask for portal moments?
The prophet cried, ‘Oh that you would rend the heavens and come down!’ (Isaiah 64:1).
The early church cried out, ‘Stretch out your hand to heal and perform miraculous signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus!” (Acts 4:30)
Apparently crying out to God for portal moments is His idea.
That’s what prayer is about: asking the Father for an act of divine intervention. However, I often neglect to do this. Sometimes this is because I am disillusioned about prayers that (from my earthly perspective) seem to have gone unanswered. But by far the most frequent reason that I don’t ask or look for portal moments is that it is simply easier to go along with the ordinary than to be a supernatural Christian.
Sometimes, I don’t expect portal moments because deep down, I don’t believe I deserve them.
Jacob had a portal moment at one of the lowest times of his life. He had failed, grasping for the promised blessing of God through lies and deceit. Now, it seemed he had lost everything, and his own brother was plotting to kill him. He was on his way into exile (you can read this story in the Bible, in Genesis 27-28).
Stopping for the night and using a rock for a pillow, he dreamed of a stairway reaching between heaven and earth to the place where he was. Angels descended and ascended and God stood at the top, and spoke to him reaffirming His promises of blessing.
When he awoke, he said, ‘Surely the Lord is in this place, and I was not aware of it.’ (Gen 28:16).
Like Jacob, or the sheep at San Remo, I do not always discern God’s presence and Kingdom, and the darkest of times I expect His intervention the least. I stop reaching for answers to prayer.
And then a Divine act of mercy provides me with a miracle, a provision, a healing, a message or a light of hope at the end of my tunnel. Like Jacob, I am reminded that God is still with me, just as He has promised.
I am currently being challenged both to ask for and to expect portal moments. Not only for my own benefit, and not even solely for those around me who need to know that ‘The Kingdom of God is near.’
I am also stirring up my expectation for portal moments because my hunger for God will not allow me to settle for anything less. For portal moments are either born out of the intimacy of prayer, or are encounters that lead me back to intimacy with Him. They are life’s confrontations with the Living God.
© Helen Calder Enliven Blog