By Mary Lindow
Hello to all of you who are listening via podcast today or who are reading this message!
I just finished being a part of our weekly prayer gathering this evening, and I have to tell you, the presence of the Father was so absolutely strong and evident in our time together! I am literally to the point that I anticipate all day long on Thursday evenings, getting together with the group that we pray with. I practically run to the family room and get things prepared, and get in position so that when everyone arrives we can just get right at it!
We have been blessed week after week, month after month with the sweet and strong presence of God as we intercede for our nation, for the globe, and for so many other things that the Lord lays on our hearts to pray about.
I HAVE BEEN WORKING ON THE PODCAST THAT I HAD TALKED ABOUT EARLIER, REGARDING A SUPERNATURAL EVENT THAT TOOK PLACE IN AUGUST 2019. I am still trying to get it to compile and come together and I know that if I rush this, I will not share it in the light of how the Lord wants it to be presented properly.
BUT, I HAVE BEEN HAVING ANOTHER MESSAGE AND WORD FROM THE LORD STIRRING DEEP WITHIN MY SPIRIT, AND SO THAT IS WHAT I’M GOING TO SHARE WITH YOU TODAY.
Hearing God accurately in the mess and chaos that the world is in right now, is of huge importance!
I would first like to welcome all of our brothers and sisters listening in Sri Lanka, as well as our brothers and sisters in Latvia. May the Lord continue to use you all to proclaim and speak truth, no matter what the cost. It is so worth being called a servant of the Lord during hard and challenging times.
TODAY, I’M GOING TO TALK WITH YOU ABOUT WHAT IT MEANS TO BE IN A PLACE OF SAFETY, A PLACE, OR A “HAVEN” OF BEING SHELTERED BY THE LORD. Especially during very, very difficult and hard times.
I’ll share how to discern and hear His voice in the chaos of the nonstop noise the dark world bombards us all with. It’s ratcheted up to crazy levels, and shouts loudly to attempt to distract us from discerning the times, and hopes to discourage us and knock us off balance with fear, and then rob our peace.
IT’S OBVIOUS THAT THE EARTH IS IN ONE MASSIVE UPHEAVAL, AND NO MATTER WHERE YOU TURN RIGHT NOW, THE CRISES CONTINUE TO MOUNT AND BOIL! And so, people begin to put aside spending time in the word of God, and certainly in his presence, to spend time with the love of the Internet and scrolling through their telephones through social network information and high charged doomsday podcasts and videos.
This can absolutely create stress and anxiety, and it also creates a terrible problem with comparing ourselves to other people and where we are at in life.
PRAYER IS NOT A BORING HARD THING WHEN YOU REALIZE
THAT YOU ARE FACE-TO-FACE, OR LITERALLY,
“PRESENCE TO PRESENCE” WITH THE FATHER.
A tremendous man who walked daily in the Presence of God, Andrew Murray, said in a book that he wrote,
“It’s one of the terrible marks of the diseased state of the Christian life in these days that there are so many that are content, and remain passive and content, without the distinct occasion of having experienced answered prayer. They pray daily, but know very little of direct, definite answers to prayer as the rule of their daily life.”
Psalm Thirty verse four says, “I sought the Lord and he answered me.”
We must understand that it’s the Father’s will that WE SEEK HIM OUT to daily have dialogue with his will, and it’s his will to have his children to listen to him and then, he listens to his children and agrees to their requests.
It’s his will that we should come to him day by day, with specific requests, and he will every day, do for us great and wonderful things!
What we ask sometimes might be a case where the specific answer is that he refuses our request, but our Father lets us know when and why he can’t give us what we request. It’s like his Son Jesus, and so we will withdraw our petition or our request.
When did Jesus do that?
Jesus said in the Garden of Gethsemane, “If this cup could pass from me, but not my will, but your will be done.” He said this to the Father.
WHETHER OUR REQUEST IS ACCORDING TO GOD’S WILL OR NOT, GOD WILL BY HIS WORD AND BY HIS SPIRIT, TEACH THOSE OF US WHO ARE TEACHABLE, and he will give us time to withdraw our requests if they’re not according to God‘s mind or purposes.
LET’S PRESS IN.
LET’S JUST STAND FIRM UNTIL THE ANSWER COMES! PRAYER IS GIVEN TO US TO OBTAIN AN ANSWER!
It’s in prayer and its answer, that the exchange of love between the Father and we his children takes place.
MY QUESTION IS, “ARE YOUR PRAYERS BEING ANSWERED?”
During the last hours of the age that we’re in, there will be two opposing groups or alliances in the world.
The First group are those whose hearts are absolutely overwrought with bitterness, resentment and hatred.
The Second group is those whose love has actually increased, and are experiencing the power of the Kingdom of God, now!
Jesus told us about this in Matthew in chapter 4:10-13.
He said, “At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people.
Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold, but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved.”
And then in Matthew 24:14 he added,
“This gospel (good news) of the kingdom shall be preached in the whole world for a witness to all the nations and then the end shall come.”
SO, THE BIG QUESTION IS...
...“WHAT IS THIS GOSPEL OF THE KINGDOM?”
It’s the whole truth Jesus came to bring, not only that part that saves us from our sins, but also that part which creates us in his image!
It’s the full message, the full good news with all its requirements and all of its rewards!
It’s is the full price for the full power!
It’s the most glorious pearl that a person can possess. The presence of God in His glory, revealed, made known within and among us!
IF WE WANT TO GAIN THIS GREAT LOVE, WE WILL CONTINUALLY BE FORCED TO MAKE CHOICES TOWARD MERCY, OR, TOWARD UNFORGIVENESS, and if we don’t walk in a forgiving attitude, we will certainly become prey to an embittered spirit, if it’s in fact, God‘s plan to allow wickedness and holiness at the same time, so they grow to full maturity.
We must guard our hearts ahead of time from reacting in bitterness or unforgiveness because the increasing anarchy will certainly give us occasions to lose love, with the attempt to make us hard so we can survive in this cruel world.
WE OFTEN WITHDRAW FROM THE GENUINENESS OF PURE LOVE! We can’t choose cautious, selective love, and also walk in the power of God’s kingdom, my friends! To defy pain, we sometimes unconsciously shut down our love, because after all, its love that makes us vulnerable.
GOD WANTS US TO BE A PEOPLE WHOSE LOVE IS GROWING HOT, NOT COLD. Jesus didn’t say that we had to trust our enemies, but he did say that we had to love them anyhow. You might be asking why!
One reason God allows difficulties is to test us!
I know! I know! We don’t want to hear that!
He wants to see if our Christianity is just an intellectual pursuit or just thoughts and feelings of the mind, or if following him is truly the highest passion of our hearts. So, he tells us in Matthew 5:44, “Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.” Wow!
SOME OF YOU HAVE GONE THROUGH REJECTION AND BETRAYAL MOST LIKELY.
The Lord says to you today,
“You did not fail, you have continued to love, and although you went through great pain, yet you have forgiven, those who have hurt you.”
My friends you have passed the test.
THERE ARE HOWEVER, SOME OF YOU LISTENING OR READING THAT STILL HAVE CERTAIN INDIVIDUALS IN YOUR LIVES THAT YOU HAVE NOT FORGIVEN, AND WHOM YOU DO NOT LOVE. Maybe you’re right, they don’t deserve your forgiveness, but what you don’t realize is the consequence of your anger.
You see, as long as we refuse to forgive, a part of this is trapped in the past where you will always be reminded of your pain, and until we forgive, we will not be fully released to go on with our life.
Even the time of year in which you were hurt will bring depression.
THERE’S ONLY ONE WAY WE CAN HAVE TRUE FELLOWSHIP WITH GOD AND THAT IS IN THE HERE AND NOW, RIGHT NOW, LIVING IN THE PRESENT. But if our mind is in conflict with others, we’re neither here nor in the present. When we live in the past, we are cut off from God! What people did to us to hurt us is over! It’s done; it doesn’t have any real existence or life of its own, except in your mind.
SO THERE WITHIN US, THE DEED CONTINUES TO LIVE AND FESTER AND AS LONG AS IT LIVES, WE’RE STILL BEING HURT BY IT. The person or the people who wounded you may have long since died. They can’t be blamed because it’s us who keeps our wounds alive. Not only is the quality of our spiritual life affected, but often our physical health pays a price as well!
As long as we keep holding onto the burden of what someone has done to us, every time we think about it or think about that person, the stomach acids start to churn and anxiety increases, and then of course our body is continually put under stress.
If we don’t forgive those who have hurt us, we lose a measure of our capacity to love and whether they deserve forgiveness or not, we deserve a better life!
God wants to give you a better life but you can’t enjoy abundant life and carry unforgiveness, because we’re shackled to something that was hurting us.
Did you know that our own unforgiveness tortures us?
SO HOW DO YOU GET OUT OF THAT PRISON?
HOW DO YOU FIND THE PROTECTION OF GOD FOR YOUR SOUL?
Well, God calls us to forgive. You have to see the hands of God reaching to you in the midst of your pain.
He wants to redeem that conflict using that specific crisis or hardship to develop and perfect character in you. It will be this experience that he will use to make you like Jesus. To become like Jesus is to dwell, to live, in the place of rest and the safety of God.
Every time we say, “Father, I choose to love. I choose to forgive. I choose to forget and not hold it against this person”, we are taking on the nature of Jesus. Friends, rejoice that Jesus is taking over your heart. You are entering into the strong, safe haven of God’s shelter.
I DO MANY THINGS THAT THE LORD HAS ASSIGNED ME TO DO IN LIFE NOT ONLY AS A MINISTER, BUT ALSO AS A PASTORAL COUNSELOR.
I also host and facilitate a group called “The international Prophetic Women’s Mentoring Council.” This is a group of women from all walks of life several cultural groups and different backgrounds. We meet through zoom video sessions and individually.
The thing that is “the glue that bonds us” is the fact that each of us have been called into ministry, and each of these women flows in a different expression of the prophetic gift.
This past week we had a zoom session and our conversation and subject matter was regarding, the power of intercession and what it takes to approach the Face of God, in a right attitude.
One of the things that stood out so strongly in our time of dialogue and accountability to one another was the fact that in order to hear clearly from the Spirit of God, we need to have the inward witness, or the “inside part of us that communicates with God”, clearly in a place of submission and humility before him, and, that we first come into a place where we have asked the Lord to cleanse us. That means cleanse our hearts before we try to come to Him in prayer.
MANY PEOPLE DON’T KNOW HOW TO HEAR THE VOICE OF GOD. They seek it through quick daily devotionals, or they seek the voice of God through other people every day, instead of seeking the Lord himself.
The scripture tells us clearly in John 10:4-5, “His sheep know his voice, and strange voices, they will not follow.”
SO WHAT ARE THE STRANGE VOICES?
The voices from the external world that are constantly pumping us full of data, fear, rhetoric and forced compliance to social conditioning. If we choose to listen to the voice of strangers, then we move further away from being sheep in the pasture of the Lord.
SO HOW DO WE KNOW HIS VOICE?
How do we discern that it’s him? The number one thing, is that God always speaks life. He always speaks truth. And when God speaks, it brings peace, even in the midst of hard difficulties or hard decisions. An absolute solid peace comes and says, “This is the way, and this is what you have to do!”
Your own ears will hear him. Right behind you a voice will say,
"This is the way you should go,” whether to the right or to the left.
That’s Isaiah 30:21.
THE HOLY SPIRIT LIVES IN YOU.
God absolutely wants to direct your life through your decision-making. The Holy Spirit guides us in our spirits (not through our physical body). The Number One way The Holy Spirit leads and guides us is through what the Bible calls, the “Inward Witness.”
Proverbs 3:6 says, “Seek His will in all you do, and He will show you which path to take.”
WHAT IS AN INNER OR INWARD WITNESS?
An inner witness is an impression, or a sense or perception on the inside of you.
Romans 8:16 tells us,
“For his Spirit joins with our spirit, to affirm, to confirm, that we are God’s children.”
Jeremiah 7:23-24 says this to us,
“But this is what I commanded them, saying, ‘Obey My voice, and I will be your God, and you will be My people; and you shall walk entirely in the way which I command you, so that it may go well for you.’
Yet, they did not obey or incline their ear, but walked by their own advice and in the stubbornness of their evil hearts, and they went backward and not forward.
AS KINGDOM PEOPLE, WE’RE NOT LED BY OUR SENSES.
We’re not led by our ears or our eyes. We’re led by our spirit.
When we talk about hearing God, we’re not talking about hearing God with our physical ears. We’re talking about hearing Him in our spirit.
Here’s a great example:
The Apostle Paul had been arrested and he was headed to his trial. Before he took the journey he sensed something in his spirit. He wasn’t the captain of the ship, but he sensed something in his spirit.
In Acts 27:10, Apostle Paul said,
"Men, I perceive we're going to face a disaster and heavy losses on this voyage. This disaster will cause damage to the cargo and the ship, and it will affect our lives."
It wasn’t long before the ship hit a cyclone, but an angel appeared and guaranteed Paul that everyone would make it, and they did!
What was it that what Paul said in the beginning? “I perceive".
This is what we’re looking at right now.
We’re talking about being led by the Spirit of God, no matter what circumstance or difficulty we might encounter.
BEING A PERSON WHO IS CALLED TO A PROPHETIC MINISTRY, I AM CLEARLY AWARE OF THE FACT THAT 90% OF WHAT I DO, ALSO COMES FROM TEACHING PEOPLE FROM THE WORD OF GOD REGARDING HOW TO “HEAR” THE VOICE OF GOD.
My job is not to be a telephone for people to connect to God with, nor simply through prophesying. This is not going to change lives long term if the word of God is not taught and also if people don’t act on it and obey it.
I HAVE HAD SOME STRANGE ENCOUNTERS WITH PEOPLE WHO THINK THAT I HAVE SOME KIND OF HOTLINE OR SATELLITE CONNECTION TO GOD TO HELP THEM GET ANSWERS. They need something or want to hear what the Lord has for them by asking me for a prophetic word. My friends this is not how the prophetic word of knowledge or word of wisdom works!
I had a lady when we were Pastoring a local fellowship come up to me after the service and she asked me if I would please, “do whatever I do, do that thing that I do”, and see if God would show me where she had put her wedding ring. She had lost it.
I remember feeling very uncomfortable and a cold chill went through my body! My thought process was, “this woman wants me to be like a palm reader, or a magic eight ball! She wants me to use divination to find her wedding ring!“
Very kindly but firmly I told the woman, “You can ask the Lord to show you where it is yourself, or just simply go on looking for it. Pray that the Lord would lead you to it, but to ask me to ask the Holy Spirit to show me where it is, is basically trying to use another voice to speak to God for you when you can speak on your own to him.”
THERE ARE TIMES, WHEN GOD WILL SPEAK A WORD, AND IT IS DONE THROUGH A PROPHETIC UTTERANCE, and it gives us a word of knowledge about something or a word of wisdom about a specific event where we need to have insight, but it will always confirm with the Spirit of God what he has already put down on the inside of us that we can’t seem to quite untangle, until the prophetic word comes and brings a clarity to it.
SOMETIMES THE HOLY SPIRIT WILL HAVE SOMEONE BRING A PROPHETIC WORD THAT COMES IN THE FORM OF LOVING CORRECTION, BUT IT IS STILL CORRECTION, AND PEOPLE GET ANGRY AND SHOUT, “HOW DARE YOU JUDGE ME! Who are you to judge me?!”
Of course what this is a reaction to being caught out in bad behavior or hidden sin, and the Lord gently, lovingly, brings a word of warning.
ALL OF US KNOW WHEN WE SLIP AWAY FROM SPENDING TIME IN THE PRESENCE OF GOD. We know when we slack off from reading the scripture and from meditating on it, letting the Holy Spirit speak through the word to us. This is where the areas of bitterness and lack of purity in our walk with the Lord get all tangled up.
ASK THE HOLY SPIRIT TO TEACH YOU HOW TO BE LED BY HIM.
(By the way, you might need a refreshing of your commitment to only follow his voice.)
You don’t need a prophet to hear from God for you, or have a constant prophetic word to make decisions.
Simply say these words.
“Holy Spirit, teach me how to be led by you.”
Then, before you make any major decisions, acknowledge God.
Say, “God, this is what the situation is, > insert your situation <.
What are your thoughts about this?”
“God, this is what is happening right now, and this is what I’m thinking about doing. What do you think?”
From this point, you begin to look on the inside. Practice looking on the inside.
DO YOU HAVE PEACE ON THE INSIDE?
Or do you have discomfort on the inside?
Proverbs 20:27 says,
“The spirit of man is the candle or lamp of the Lord.”
This verse lets us know that God guides us through our spirit.
MUCH TOO OFTEN, WE SEEK GUIDANCE IN OTHER WAYS.
We judge by our physical senses, but nowhere does God say He will guide us by our senses. Or we look at a situation from a mental standpoint. But God guides us through our spirit, or our inward man.
THE INWARD MAN HAS A “VOICE.”
We call it our conscience, intuition, or an inward witness. As born-again believers train and develop their spirit, this voice becomes clearer.
One thing that has held us back is that we are more body-conscious and mental-conscious than spirit-conscious. We have developed the body and soul but have so often, ignored our spirit.
WAITING ON GOD IS SO IMPORTANT
Sometimes people don’t want to take their part of responsibility to engage with the Lord. It’s easier to put it off on God and say, “Lord, if you want me to do something or do that, then open the door. If You don’t, then shut it.”
It takes patience to wait on God until you know the answer on the inside.
Sometimes it takes times of waiting, quietly, patiently, to hear this inward witness.
WE GET SO BUSY PHYSICALLY AND MENTALLY THAT SPIRITUAL THINGS BECOME INDISTINCT TO US.
It’s easier to get quiet with your body than with your mind. Sometimes when you try to sleep, your body is relaxed, but your mind is still churning with the day’s activities, ideas and plans, or, with worries and anxieties.
HERE IS WHERE PRAYING IN TONGUES IS A GREAT ADVANTAGE.
“For if I pray in an unknown tongue, my spirit prays,
but my understanding is unfruitful.” (1 Cor. 14:14).
I have found the best way to quiet my mind is to pray in tongues. When you pray in tongues, your mind grows quiet. Once it’s quiet, you become more conscious of your spirit and spiritual things.
WHEN CHRISTIANS SEEK TO KNOW GOD’S WILL FOR THEIR LIVES,
HE WILL MAKE HIS PERFECT WILL CLEAR TO THEM THROUGH AMAZING WAYS OF COMMUNICATING.
Whether it be through a calm, small voice speaking to their heart, or through a supernatural manifestation. God will guide those whose hearts are open to Him along the pathway of peace.
HERE IS A HELPFUL HEART PREPARATION
FOR LISTENING TO AND HEARING GOD
When Samuel was a very young child he went to live with Eli the priest, where he sleeps in the temple. Samuel is sleeping when he is awakened by the Lord calling his name: "Samuel!" (He thinks Eli is calling him.) This happens twice. Finally, Eli realizes that God is calling the boy!
"So Eli told Samuel,
'Go and lie down, and if he calls to you, say,
"Speak, LORD, for your servant is listening."'
So Samuel went and lay down in his bed.
The LORD came and stood there, calling just like the
Other times, 'Samuel! Samuel!'
Then Samuel said,
'Speak, for your servant is listening.' (1 Samuel 3:9-10)
THIS IS THE HEART NEEDED FOR THOSE WHO TRULY WANT TO CLEARLY HEAR GOD:
"Speak, LORD, for your servant is listening."
Humility is required.
GOD DOESN'T TALK TO US NON-STOP LIKE A 24-HOUR RADIO STATION. But he will speak to us or nudge us occasionally -even often, if we're listening for his voice.
God sees the whole picture, like a scouting pilot who watches the battle from a spotter plane high above the action, then radios down to others, the instructions for battle.
God speaks to us about this through David in Psalm 32:8-9
The LORD says,
“I will guide you along the best pathway for your life.
I will advise you and watch over you.
Do not be like a senseless horse or mule that needs a bit and bridle to keep it under control.”
GOD IS OUR INSTRUCTOR AND TEACHER ON WHAT DIRECTION OR PATH TO TAKE.
From his vantage point -seeing the past, present, and future, God sees what we can’t see, and "counsels us, directs us, shows us with his eye, focused upon us.”
IF WE WILL LISTEN, GOD IS OUR WISE COUNSELOR.
God doesn't want to force us to obey like some animals that won't obey unless you put a bit and bridle or a leash on them. Instead, he seeks to speak to us in counsel.
AS WE HAVE GROWN AND LEARN TO HONESTLY TRUST IN HIM, WE BEGIN TO OBEY. He desires a more mature relationship based on trust rather than on being forced. If we fight him, we can't serve him.
Speak the same words that Samuel did.
“Lord! Here I am! Your servant is listening!”
Then, be still, and listen to what the Lord has to say to you!
He’s waiting to speak to you right now!
LET’S PRAY TOGETHER RIGHT NOW!
Whenever I lift my voice to pray for discernment and Your guidance Lord, I am reminded that You are a good shepherd.
Forgive me for the times I have gone behind or ahead of Your plans. Forgive me for being demanding and trying to rush my time hearing from you.
Father, I ask for Your Holy Spirit to lead me to Your perfect ways. I thank You that I don’t have to rely on my own wisdom, but I can depend on Your guidance.
Thank You Holy Spirit.
In the precious name of Jesus I say, “Here I am Lord. Speak to me. I am your servant and I am listening.
In Jesus name I pray, Amen.
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"THE MESSENGER" - Mary Lindow - “2023”
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