🚨URGENT WORD “MANY ARE CALLED, BUT FEW ARE CHOSEN” (MATTHEW 22:18)

MANY ARE INVITED, BUT FEW SAY YES… 👀

He said: ”I have more for you. And I am offering you something that I’ve offered many in your generation- but they could not put down their phones.”

These are the words the Lord spoke to me in prayer.

I WEPT… I WAS BROKEN… I CRIED OUT FOR GRACE AND STRENGTH… I THEN CRIED OUT FOR MY CHILDREN…

👉🏼I knew He was speaking directly to the addiction of our generation. It was an invitation into the fullest longings of His heart.

It was in an invitation into true revival and awakening.

👉🏼He was inviting me into hours upon hours of revelation and encounters with Him that would impact generations to come.

👉🏼He was calling me…

👉🏼HE IS CALLING US- into a place where few were able to go.

This is a place we must go to escape the deception of the last days. The word of God admonishes us to know that ”even the elect will be deceived” (Matthew 24:24) 

  •  Have we become addicted and wooed by demonic self-exaltation? 
  •  Could the Lord be urging us away from constant media interaction because we are in communion with the spirit of the age? 
  • Could it be that He loves us so much that He wants to teach us the beauty of His leadership, what His voice really sounds like, and the truth of His word in an hour when deception and corruption are rampant?
  • Could He be calling out for a people who will dethrone this spirit in the last days? 

What is the Spirit of the Age?

Revelation 17 speaks of the great harlot that will entice with her lusts and immorality in the last days. You may hear this spirit called the spirit of Babylon or the spirit of the age. 

“Come, I will show you the punishment of the great prostitute, who sits by many waters.2 With her the kings of the earth committed adultery, and the inhabitants of the earth were intoxicated with the wine of her adulteries.” Revelation 17:1-2

This spirit thrives on self-gratification and self exhalation. It loves to appeal to our fleshly pleasures and desires to be known, to be heard, and to be seen. It is satanic in nature but yet very enticing.

Revelation 17:3-6

There I saw a woman sitting on a scarlet beast that was covered with blasphemous names and had seven heads and ten horns.4 The woman was dressed in purple and scarlet, and was glittering with gold, precious stones, and pearls. She held a golden cup in her hand, filled with abominable things and the filth of her adulteries.5 The name written on her forehead was a mystery:

Babylon the great

the mother of prostitutes

and of the abominations of the earth.

6 I saw that the woman was drunk with the blood of God’s holy people, the blood of those who bore testimony to Jesus.

This spirit is captivating, dazzling, promises prosperity, power, and personal fame. 

It opposes the message of holiness, repentance, and exhalation of Jesus. 

It promotes mankind, sexuality, and own desires above all else. 

This harlot’s goal is to destroy the message of purity, truth, and repentance. She wants to entice the multitude to join with her in this war against the people of God. It’s a “you do you, but destroy them” message!

When the Lord spoke to me about putting down the phone; the most sobering two words He said were: 

“COULD NOT!”

He didn’t say they WOULD NOT put down their phones but they COULD NOT… LET THAT SINK IN!

 

HE WAS TALKING ABOUT ADDICTION 

  • How many times a day do you check your social media account after you have posted? 
  • Do you experience happiness or depression according to how well your post is doing? 
  • Have you been consumed in the internet popularity contest?
  • Do you view of right and wrong by the current news outlets, politics, celebrities or even ministries that you follow? 

If you answered yes to any of these. Wake up! 

The word of God is the TRUTH all the rest is must bow. 

We must shut off the noise, study the scriptures as though our lives depend on it, and allow God to break up the fallow ground of our hearts. Hear the word of the Lord from Hosea 10:12-13:

“Sow for yourselves righteousness

and reap the fruit of loving devotion;

break up your unplowed ground.

For it is time to seek the LORD

until He comes and sends righteousness

upon you like rain.

13You have plowed wickedness and reaped injustice;

you have eaten the fruit of lies.

Because you have trusted in your own way

and in the multitude of your mighty men”

God was speaking a warning and judgment through Hosea because the people had been swept up into the lies and deception Babylonian spirit, the same spirit we are warned about in Revelation 17-18 and the same spirit that that has been around since Adam and Eve. 

The Judgement comes because of trusting in your own way and the multitude!

“You have plowed in wickedness and reaped injustice; you have eaten the fruit of lies. Because you have trusted in your own way and in the multitude of mighty men.”  

In Hosea’s day, they didn’t have access to the internet and social media. The multitude that they listened to was intensely smaller than the voices we hear today. 

I venture to say that we currently sit amidst the most pivotal generation to have ever been born. Unfortunately, the wooing of the harlot is constant, deafening, and she is shouting day-in and day-out. Posting, commenting, reporting: “trust in your own way and in the multitude.” 

Even those of us who long for the truth have been infilled by this multitude. We have been lulled to sleep, silenced, and has made us more like the walking dead than bold messengers. We are always longing for more but too addicted and distracted to receive what we hunger for. The multitude of Christians are hearing the voice of the Lord but too consumed by the multitude of the culture to respond. 

We must break up our unplowed ground and seek the Lord for righteousness to arise!

HE IS BREAKING IN

This invitation to break the addiction is to bring freedom from the drunken stupor of the age. It is an invitation to hear His voice and come to the knowledge of the truth. It is an invitation to reconciliation and reformation! 

The Lord is breaking in and calling out to us “Come out from among them and be ye separate says the Lord, touch no unclean thing, and I will receive you”(Corinthians 6:17): “When the enemy comes in like a flood the Spirit of God raises a standard against him” Isaiah 59:19

 

The lover of our souls is calling out to us, beloved.

He’s inviting us into a depth of intimacy, revelation, and creativity that has never been experienced.

”We are ever-increasing in knowledge but never coming to the knowledge of the truth.” (2 Tim 3:7) 

We are inspired but not transformed.

We are creative but unproductive. 

We have been numbed out and taught by the spirit of the age. 

But He is calling out! 

NOW!

We must shut off the phones and allow the process of cleansing and breaking to take place. Awakening will follow!

Help us, Lord! Rip us out of our virtual stupor. We want more!!

Tammie Southerland is the author of Permission to Burn: Breaking the Chains of Compromise from a Holy Generation

 

“We Were Family Before Ministry”

Ending Competition, Racism, Sexism, and Healing the wounded with One Revelation

My sister (in-law/ BFF) and I love the Voxer app. It’s an audio walkie talkie app that we use to chat, pray, and make one another laugh all day. As busy moms, we function using apps but it’s not what connects us. Prayer and our passion for Jesus binds our hearts together. We both have three children and are very alike in how we process the world’s problems. I knew when she walked into the room with my brother-in-law years ago; she was going to be family. ( Although she didn’t know it yet) I told her when they were dating, with tongue-in-cheek, that if he didn’t marry her, I’d disown him and adopt her. God gave me such a passion for seeing her know Him deeply. Now, she travels and serves in the ministry; when we are together, I introduce her has my sister —not my sister-in-law; or with a ministry title. It is so much fun to watch the expressions on the faces of people. 

 

Why? She has a lot more melanin than I do. Yep, she’s black, and I’m white. But we are sisters! 

 It’s not the personality or natural ties that make us family; although we have a blast together. If you hear her tell it, she was quite intimidated by my fire for Jesus when she first met me. Eventually, she was ablaze and hungry because of Jesus’s love for her. I’m not that great, but for some reason, my hunger for Jesus makes others hungry, so I’ve been told.

  On Voxer one day, we were discussing the pains of broken relationships and misplaced lingo used in current streams of ministry. We didn’t think about the connection between the misplaced lingo and reconciliation issues. We talked about guarding our hearts, keeping prayer and family at the forefront as ministry work is increasing. 

(She’s quite the inner-healing guru- she is always analyzing the root of issues to understand why there is bad fruit. She’s pretty awesome. You need to know her.)  

FAMILY & RECONCILIATION:

LINGO OR A

THIS IS OUR FAMILY!

UNBREAKABLE BOND? 

Sometimes the word family is used to identify commonality instead of a deep bond in Christ that stands through the storms of life. Relationship in the body of Christ is often predicated on ministry affiliation, skin tone, gender, denomination, and the like; making the need to define our use of the word family even more urgent. 

The issues in our society like racism are rooted in sin and the fallen nature of humanity. All evil stems from the sin nature. As Christians, we say that Jesus is the answer, and we are His representatives. Absolutely! Truth, but we need to step up our game and grab ahold of Jesus’s intercession for oneness in John 17. Also let us intercede for the true manifestation of John 13:35

35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”

 

Broken Family in the Church Culture

Prayer alone has a way of binding hearts spiritually, but also we must weep with one another, rejoice with one another, eat with one another, and help one another. Heart motivation is key! When I’m with my sister, we are not looking at one another’s skin tone or background. We don’t care about our past differences we see our likenesses in Christ. We are truly family. 

Serving one another is from the motivation of love not out of obligation to an organization or club. 

Jesus gave us the ministry of reconciliation. 

Reconciliation removes from within our hearts the worldly point of view. We are new creations in Christ- together. 

His healing work made us family. 

“14 For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died.15 And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again.

16 So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer.17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ,the new creation has come:[a]The old has gone, the new is here!18 All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation:19 that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation.20 We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God.21 God made him who had no sin to be sin[b]for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” (2 Corinthians 5:14-21)

Taking Back the Word Family and Healing the Wounded

I’ll repeat it: Family has nothing to do with organized ministry! 

In my life, the word family represents strength and unmovable relationship. I have parents that stayed together through the worst and best of times. Conflict and confrontation were not pretty, but with understanding and forgiveness, it made the family stronger. 

 CHURCH!

Spiritual bonds in Christ should supersede natural relationships. 

It profoundly pains my soul how those who once enjoyed being a family in a church or ministry walk away bitter as the seasons or circumstances change. My parents didn’t break up when their business or jobs changed. They didn’t disown me or get offended when I grew up, moved out, got married, and started a family of my own. 

They celebrated these changes as milestones. 

My father didn’t set speaking limitations on me because I am a girl. He didn’t sit me in a different part of the home because my hair and skin were lighter than my brother’s. That would be absurd. But some experienced natural family as abusive and painful. ( I am so sorry this breaks my heart… Keep reading) 

My sister and I discussed how the word family might not be as healing as we intended it. Therefore, we need a reformation! 

True Family Sees No Color or Gender

“There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” Galatians 3:28  

Racism or sexism is not the issue sin is! 

Many people’s natural association with mother, fathers, siblings, and such, seasoned with brokenness, is more of a wound than healing balm. We must see the healing that is desperately needed. We must resist the desire to cut one another off or become superficial because of differences. Jesus was drastically different from his disciples, yet he laid down His deity and life to identify with the weakness of man.

“But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men” Philippians 2:7 

Ministry or Similarities are Not the Ties that Bind- Jesus Is

There is nothing wrong with drawing close to people that you ‘”click” with especially when you are hungry to grow closer to the Lord. I love hanging with people who are fiery, love truth, and love to pray! I want everyone to be on fire and I love begin around people who are on fire. 

I say all the time: 

“I don’t want people to just come watch me burn I want people to burn with me.” 

But, I keep people around me that are very different from me purposely. Not to be religiously correct, but I long to increase my ability to see like Jesus sees and love as He loves. Being around people from different backgrounds opens our eyes to the many facets of the beauty of God! 

Breaking the Ministry Family Association 

  • If you have been hurt by the ministry or church and have disassociated yourself. Allow the Lord to heal that place of brokenness. You need the Body of Christ as crazy as it might be!
  • If you are a ministry leader and have cut people off or formed biases because they are not the same as you and your denomination, race, nationality, or gender, repent. Seek the heart of God!
  • If we are going to see true revival, we must get this right in the church culture first. 
  • If you are trying to get it right but have been misunderstood, you are in good company. Jesus was misunderstood too! Keep pressing into His heart. 

The ministry we lead is ever-changing, but the message or Messenger never does. We must learn to minister to God before we minister to man. We must get His heart. When we are lead by the Spirit of God, we must yield to His voice moment to moment. We must stay tender before Him and allow Him to search and tenderize our hearts. 

Anyone noted for their faith within the pages of the Scriptures radically obeyed, and their acts benefited others more than themselves. We must always be willing to work with our hands open. Real family in Christ is not rooted in commonality, ministry organizations or church memberships, but the bond of Christ.

I cry out for the broken today. Will you cry out with me and allow the Lord to search your heart and heal it? Will you forgive those who hurt you? You are not family because you are the same as someone else, not because you are a member of the same church or network but because of Jesus you are a child of God. He has given us the ministry of reconciliation.

Can we contend for a movement of family and repent of our discord in the body of Christ! It’s time for an awakening! 

Matthew 5: 23-24

Therefore if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar.First go and be reconciled to your brother ;then come and offer your gift.

Often, we think that we can just coast through life and say, “What will be, will be. I’ve been good enough and I go to church. So, I’m good.”

This is one of the biggest lies the enemy has fed us.

The rich young ruler’s encounter with Jesus is an eye-opening one.

Jesus offered him the opportunity to be a witness of the mighty ministry of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords — and to gain eternal life.

All he had to do is sell all of the stuff he had worked for and lay down his own fame.

That’s all, just get rid of everything that has no eternal value and give the money to the poor. But the Bible says that he couldn’t let it all go!

He had gained so much and had worked so hard to build his image as a rich man! Because of this, he traded one of the biggest opportunities any of us could ever want for worldly baggage; baggage that apparently ruled him instead of him ruling it.

He knew he would journey on an adventure with JESUS HIMSELF and he would gain eternal life. He knew had to go low and release his old life to gain the new. He had to trade his fame to be a mere witness.

Read the whole story and tell me, how does this speak to you?

Looking at him, Jesus felt a love for him and said to him, “One thing you lack: go and sell all you possess and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.” But at these words he was saddened, and he went away grieving, for he was one who owned much property.

And Jesus, looking around, said to His disciples, “How hard it will be for those who are wealthy to enter the kingdom of God!” The disciples were amazed at His words. But Jesus answered again and said to them, “Children, how hard it is to enter the kingdom of God! It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.”

Mark 10:21-25

What will you chose to lay down this year?

You really should come to Ascend 2019!

Lay it all down! Do whatever you have to do!

Just come…

The melody of the song, “Hail to the Chief” filled the air as I watched former President George H.W. Bush’s casket near the Capitol rotunda, where he will lay in state for a time. There are several steps at the entrance of the rotunda. How do they successfully get the casket to where it needs to go with all those stairs? Then I hear a command from an unidentified source ring out above the band’s rendition,

“AND STEP!”

Each military pallbearer was guided in each step up the staircase because they were looking straight ahead, focused on their duty. Each one relied on that command of when to take a step. Every step of every soldier was methodic and synchronous, all working together like a finely oiled machine. Each soldier had their own responsibility. Each had a part to play. Each carrying their own weight. None of the soldiers tried to outdo the other, or take another’s territory, or race to see who could take the next step first. They worked together as a unit to fulfill their duty.

“AND STEP!”

Oh, if only the bride of Christ would work together as a unit for her Bridegroom! In my book that is coming soon, Permission to Burn, I describe what true unity looks like and how it should function:

“It is true that we want unity, and this divisive, back-biting, accusing spirit is a demonic phenomenon that we must defeat. But, it will only be purged by holy fire. If we want to see the promise of awakening fulfilled in our time, we must be a generation that embraces the fire. Events are amazing, but God wants unity to reign in the body of Christ, and He wants His word to go forth with sustainability in His people. The unity Jesus speaks of in John 17 will not come in any way other than embracing the fire and glory of our amazing, fiery, holy, pure, and just God.

True Unity

His will and His Kingdom will come when we ask for it, and then we will find ourselves challenged to align with His vision. So many people think unity means everyone compromising to get along and do an event together. That is not unity. That is tolerance. That is building the tower of Babel (see Gen. 11:1–9). God the Father is the true builder of unity. Psalm 127 says, “Unless the Lord builds the house, those who build it labor in vain.” And Jesus is the Chief Cornerstone of unity.

However, this can only take place as we lay down our rights to territory and our human-made blueprints, where we name and label everything as our own. It all belongs to the Bridegroom, and He longs to reign with His spotless bride—not with a broken, immature, offended, competing, cannibalizing body.”

It is critical in this hour to keep a check on the motivation of our hearts and ask:

  1. Why am I doing what I am doing?
  2. Am I disowning my life, and sharing the cross with Jesus? (Mark 8:34 TPT).
  3. Am I truly helping my fellow soldiers in Christ fulfill their duties well in action and words?

Psalm 15 TPT

Living in the Shining Place
A poetic song, by King David
  Lord, who dares to dwell with you?
   Who presumes the privilege of being close to you,
   living next to you in your shining place of glory?
   Who are those who daily dwell in the life of the Holy Spirit?
 They are passionate and wholehearted,
   always sincere and always speaking the truth—
   for their hearts are trustworthy.
 They refuse to slander or insult others;
   they’ll never listen to gossip or rumors,
   nor would they ever harm another with their words.
 They will speak out passionately against evil and evil workers
   while commending the faithful ones who follow after the truth.
 They make firm commitments and follow through,
   even at great cost.
 They never crush others with exploitation or abuse
   and they would never be bought with a bribe
   against the innocent.
   They will never be shaken; they will stand firm forever.

Selah

Tammie Southerland

Sometimes to get freedom, there is war first.

Have you ever heard the phrase, “Hurt people hurt people”? It’s true.

After a conversation with my leader a couple of weeks ago, I found myself in an all too-familiar cycle. I replayed the sentences in my mind, appalled at what was said. I was offended because i was hearing and seeing through a lens of threat. My entire being was in a constant state of bracing itself in certainty of the next hurt from a person or situation. Much like a porcupine with his quills engaged, I was living in a perpetual state of defensiveness to keep from getting hurt.

Troubling thoughts continued to swirl as bits of the conversation looped in my mind. Finally, I thought it best to write an email of what I thought about the conversation, along with various other “opinions”. The oppression and condemnation was so heavy, I could barely function.

What was happening to me?

I cried out to the Lord, as I randomly googled the words “spirit of trauma” without really thinking. I found a trustworthy source and began reading. This minister had over 30 years of experience setting people free from trauma. Something this minister said prompted me to look up the scripture where Jesus healed the boy from seizures. I looked it up and read it (Luke 9:37-43). As I read it, I immediately thought of my cousin who has had epilepsy all his life. I also knew that I often found myself trying to complete certain tasks, and would just freeze up with mental and emotional blockages.

When I was young, I remember my mechanically-inclined dad talk about motors that would be “seized up” or “froze up” which meant they would not function at all; the parts would not turn. If you look the up the word seize on websters.com, seizing means to bind, to take prisoner, to overwhelm physically. At that moment, I knew that not only had I personally gone through some horrific trauma in my own life, but this was a generational situation. I knew I must get free from this. I also knew once I received freedom, I had the key to freeing others.

The next afternoon, our church family had a cookout and saw my leader for the first time since I sent that email. I repented to her, told her that I knew what was happening, and shared with her what the Lord showed me.

Engulfed in flames

That night after everyone ate, prayer broke out in the kitchen. I remember my leader praying against trauma for another lady, then she turned and looked at me. I saw fire in her eyes as she said, “You have the anointing to set people free from trauma! That is the call on your life!” She put her hand on my head. I was engulfed in flames as I dropped to the floor in tears.

That night, I experienced deliverance from trauma and a level of freedom I never experienced before. I finally knew what it meant to abide in that peace that Philippians talks about; that peace that surpasses all understanding that guards my heart and mind! I am able to experience a joy I could not experience before. All it took was for me to be in willing surrender to the Lord, no matter what it looked like, or who was watching.

The Lord’s justice is rendered against the enemy when a person is set free and they set others free. I would love to pray for you to receive the same freedom in Christ!

After all,

Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen:

To loose the chains of injustice

and untie the cords of the yoke,

to set the oppressed free

And break every yoke? — Isaiah 58:6 NIV

By Angie Woodard

 

 

 

 

What does it mean to rest? Does it mean that we don’t have to do anything and we can expect God to do it all?

Not exactly…but we do have to sit down and take our seat!

Take Your Seat

As we are occupying the earth and taking territory for the kingdom of God in this last hour, it is critical to understand the concept of resting in the Lord. This is the actuality of what Jesus did for us when He went to the cross and then ascended. He didn’t just go to the cross and die—He was resurrected, He ascended, and then He just sat down at the right hand of the Father. He is resting in His finished work! (see Hebrews 10:12) He said to us “Now, come sit with Me.”

He raised us up with Christ the exalted One, and we ascended with him into the glorious perfection and authority of the heavenly realm, for we are now co-seated as one with Christ! Eph. 6:12 TPT

Did you know, the Word of God says that there’s a rest that we’ve not yet entered into? He’s calling us into that rest. He is drawing us into knowing that supernatural peace, even in turmoil.

On the Offense

We must learn how to be on the offensive end of this spiritual war rather than the defensive! That’s what we’re called to. We’re called to the offensive. We are to occupy the territory that’s already been won for us by Jesus Christ. We think that by having the full armor of God on we’re always going to be fighting everything off all the time. I got a prophetic word from the Lord when I was ministering in Florida last year, The guy said to me, “You know, it says that Satan has fiery darts that hit the shield of faith,” He said, “but the Lord says: I have given you fiery darts of pure fire!” The truth is, the enemy does not have all the fiery darts! We have them in our quiver also! Ours are much more powerful that satan’s! It’s time to start taking him out by knowing what we have in our arsenal and all that we have access to through being blood bought, Holy Spirit-filled sons and daughters of God.  

How to Rest

But here’s the key: the Spirit of Revelation, who is Jesus, has to give the revelation of His own mind, heart and plans of Heaven to us. This way we can say what He says and do what He does. We go to Him daily where He is in prayer and meditation on His word to get His thoughts in exchange for our own.

In Psalm 91, it says that “whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.” Dwelling in Him, in that place of intimacy, is where the Spirit of Revelation abides. It is where we learn the heart of the Lord, see what He sees, do what He does. Outside of that place of intimacy with Him, we bear bad fruit that’s not of Him (John 15:4-5).

Right now, God is stretching us because we cannot chase after spiritual things without the truth of His word being the plumbline, nor can we study scripture without seeking after His very own Spirit. It is His Holy Spirit that breathes life and brings revelation. We have to know the Word so that we recognize His voice. Jesus says, “My sheep know My voice and they obey!” (John 10:27).

These elements must be blended together  in the life of the beloved of the Lord to take hold of that rest in Him. This rest that is found by seeking Him first and spiritually sitting down in His lap at the right hand of the Father. Here you can hear the plans of His heart and be equipped with an arsenal of pure, fiery darts. Darts that are launched from the place of knowing peace. Knowing that you are not just surviving but thriving! Don’t be discouraged, Beloved, this is what you were created for! Get ready to hit the mark every time with your prayers as you devote your life to listening to, working with, and trusting Him.

Fasten Your Seatbelt!

Portions of this article were taken from part 2 of Tammie’s Ascend series, 11/10/2017

He’s calling you deeper! The strain, stretching, and tugging on your heart is your Beloved calling you deeper! Being called deeper sometimes feels like you are hitting a wall. It can feel exactly the opposite of blissful romance.

The searching

Song of Solomon 6:1 shows this search of desperation. That moment of anxiety when the lovesick bride realizes her bridegroom has gone missing. Even the other women look at her and feel her distress and they know the value of this romance!

“Where has your beloved gone, most beautiful of women? Which way did your beloved turn, that we may look for him with you?” Song of Solomon 6:1

The stretching and feelings of loss are actually drawing her into a deeper place of longing! This pain will produce passion and that passion puts the message of true love on display for all to see!

Are you searching? Are you being stretched? Stand your watch beloved! Keep looking because that hunger will not go unsatisfied!

“Blessed are the hungry for they shall be filled,” Matthew 5:6

Will you keep pressing deeper into His heart to know Him more? Does the heat feel like it’s being turned up and the night feels dark? Just wait, watch, and pray! He’s leading you out! Be willing to press in for that depth of intimacy! Go against the flesh!

“I will get up now and go about the city, through its streets and squares; I will search for the one my heart loves,” Song of Solomon 3:2

It ends well!

We find Him and He finds us! All will see and declare that our pain and pressure was not in vain! This verse in SS 8:5 is the beautiful picture of the pleasure filled moment when the Bride and Bridegroom come out of that wilderness season. She is no longer ragged and lost but is leaning on her beloved! They are so close they can experience breath to breath and face to face knowledge of one another!

“Who is this coming up from the wilderness leaning on her beloved?” Song of Solomon 8:5

Do not give up! You are in the middle of a divine romance! Here He comes, beloved!

By Tammie Southerland

Photo by Alex Woods on Unsplash
By Tammie Southerland 

The Worship of a Burning Heart

It is the presence of God that changes people—not our services.

“One thing I have asked from the  Lord, that I shall seek: That I may dwell in the house of the  Lord  all the days of my life, To behold the beauty of the Lord and to meditate in His temple,” (Psalm 27:4 NASB).

Even in all of David’s failure, he resolved his life to one thing; just one thing. I mean, he was a king! He just asked to dwell in the house of the Lord, gaze upon the beauty of the Lord, and meditate in His temple for the rest of his life.  

When we sit in an atmosphere of pure authentic worship, not mere musical entertainment, we are transformed and begin to hunger for more. He is drawing us into deeper proximity to His heart. He longs to take us into a place where we’re not just looking to gaze upon the next big thing; the next thing that we want, or something that will feed our flesh. He’s training us, our generation, to learn how to focus our hearts on things of His Kingdom and focus on Him like we never have before! Right now, the Lord of Glory has released a spiritual desire to catch us up into a place where we will begin to long for that one thing that we never knew existed.

That One Thing

This man, King David, before Messiah was sent, gained the revelation, that in all of his setbacks and in all of his successes, it boiled down to setting his life focus on “one thing” (Psalm 27:4). This one thing consumed all else. All he wanted was to gaze on the beauty of THE LORD all the days of his life. He longed and desired to build a dwelling place for the Lord in the land of Israel. He was ruined with the holy desire and insatiable hunger to solely look at the beauty of the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords. He knew there was a King that was greater! He knew there was a Lord that far exceeded his own lordship. David wanted to give the rightful King the throne above His own.

In Psalm 110:1 he declares, “The LORD said to my lord: ‘Sit at my right hand, until I make your enemies your footstool.’” In Matthew 22:44, Jesus quotes this verse in a discussion with the Pharisees in order to prove that the Messiah is more than David’s son; He is David’s Lord and David knew this deeply.

I believe with everything in me that there is a depth of the holy, beauty, fire, and of holy hunger in which David longed for, that is for available to us. David could only prophesy of what we have access to in Christ today. The Father wants close proximity to mankind. He wants closeness in a way that we can’t imagine. I believe our level of pursuit of this closer proximity to Him actually determines the level of our tangible intimacy with Him.

If we’re not willing to come close, then we will always be standing on the sidelines looking at others who are coming close and saying, “Why not me?” He did everything that we ever needed Him to do when He came down and gave His life for us. He died, resurrected, ascended and gave us full access to be filled with His own Holy Spirit so that we could to come close. That part of the work is finished. We just have to hunger and drawn near to Him. We must ask for more than we have at this present moment, every day.

You Don’t Need An Instrument to Worship-You are One!

David had 4,288 musicians and singers set up day and night, playing songs in intercession and worship in a tent (See 1 Chronicles 16). This non-stop atmosphere of worship must have been powerful. Even though it was his personal desire, David stored up money and materials his whole life for his son, Solomon to build the temple because God told David that it would be his son who built it (2 Samuel 7; 1 Chronicles 28:3). I have personally longed for the same things as David but I understand legacy! I want to build a place for the Lord. I want to gaze on His beauty all the days of my life! I want to host His presence day and night in my city. I want to see Him King and Lord over my city, state, nation, and world! I believe this is His desire also and just as David was able to host Him in a tent, so can we—but in a much closer way! 1 Corinthians 6:19 says, “Do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God?” We have the glory of God ever-present in and with us in a way that King David merely dreamed of. The Spirit and the presence of God Himself has made us His temple. When He poured out His Spirit in Acts 2, He put Himself into us so that we could be in non-stop communion with Him. We don’t have to have an instrument to worship, because we are one.

We Are the Sound!

I believe God wants us to know that we are the sound! You and I are His instruments of worship!  If you haven’t experienced encountering Him outside of church or a service in which someone else is leading you into worship, just ask, and get ready! Surrender and entering into a depth that we’ve not previously experienced calls into learning how to be okay with awkward, silent moments.

As soon as we get comfortable, He is going to make us uncomfortable because there’s more. There is a higher place of knowing Him that we are going after. As soon as we think we’ve got it figured out, He is going to show us that we don’t, because He wants us to get into that place of lifelong increasing revelation of Him. We were created to be in constant communion with Him; now and for eternity. This means we get to learn more of His unsearchable beauty forever. The angels that are seated around the throne are constantly saying, “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God almighty, who was and is and is to come” as they look upon His beauty because they are in a place of revelation all of the time (Revelation 4:8). They never get bored and life around the throne never gets mundane for them. I am amazed that He created us to know Him and gain even greater revelation of Himself than the angels in heaven (1 Peter 1:12; 1 Corinthians 6:3).

In order for us to be able to ascend into that place of knowing God in a greater way, than even the burning ones around the throne of God-we have to begin to hunger for more than a mental understanding of the written word of God.  The spiritual revelation of His heart, mind, and character are essential elements to knowing Him personally.  Prayer, scripture study, worship, being still and listening for His voice are important disciplines in the life of the follower of Christ.  All of this develops depth into sustainable spiritual growth. The angelic hosts of heaven know His amazing holiness is real and unsearchable. We too must know that there is more than cerebral knowledge of Him. The experience of knowing Him spirit to Spirit is extremely important. He’s given us the ability to know His worth and power contained in “The Word” who is the person of Christ.

Silencing Distractions Could Take us into Highest Place of Wonder

Some of the most powerful encounters I have ever had with the Lord happened when I forced my mind to be still. I turned off all of the electronics, and yes even the music, and listened for His whisper. It takes a little while to learn to be still in your mind and tune your ears to His voice in this crazy world, but it’s a discipline of one who hungers. Prayer both in tongues and in the your native language is powerful and should be a practiced daily! I encourage you like the Apostle Paul to pray in the heavenly language of intercession (tongues) often and for, at the very least, 20 minutes a day when you are starting out. I also encourage you to learn the discipline of being still and listening to His reply.

Truthfully, as we learn the discipline of living life in His presence and in prayer, we learn how to abide in Him and He in us (John 15). We will begin bearing Spiritual fruit in abundance. We will be able to sit in a room with absolute silence or in a room with crazy chaos and be with Him. We can learn such a lifestyle of proximity to Him that we can be in a place where others are leading a worship gathering and we are on the floor helping bring people closer to Him without touching a stage or microphone. We will learn how to abide in our heavenly seat that Paul talks about in Ephesians 6:2, “we are seated with Him in heavenly places,” and we become fully active in our HOLY spiritual existence.

As we live this way, we are made free of being dependent on another person to take us into His presence. We just abide there. The supernatural grace of God is falling upon His people right now in such a way that we are able explore places of His heart  that no other generation has known. He has given us access, but He has also called us to lay down the distractions and cares of the world on a daily basis in order to enter into this place of deep relationship. Many have been so frustrated with their life and relationship with God recently. This is because He has been allowing the rubbing, pressing, and stripping away of temporal pleasures to prepare us for the deeper knowledge of Him. We must know that there is a greater responsibility to carry out the plans of His heart as we begin to understand the deeper revelation that He’s giving to us.

“The Lord our God has secrets to no one. We are not accountable for them, but we and our children are accountable forever for all that he has revealed to us, so that we may obey all the terms of these instructions.” (Deut. 29:29, NLT)

“When someone is given much, much will be required in return; and when someone has been entrusted  with much, even more will be required.” (Luke 12:48, NLT)

Is Your Heart Burning?

And no, I am not talking about the kind of heart-burn that is caused by what you ate for dinner! That’s acid reflux. 🤣

The kind of burning I’m talking about causes true pleasure in knowing the Lord personally and knowing that He knows you inside and out!
The kind of burning that I’m talking about is the feeling of passion and being alive in the depths of your being. I am speaking of Christian living that is more than going to church once a week and putting up with the person in the seat next to you! Our Father in heaven LONGS for us to live with a heart that is alive and on fire for Him!

Did you know that the Aramaic word for love literally means, to burn with passion? For some this is a new concept, but you can feel the desire stirring up in you to know Him this way and some of you have found yourself burning with passion, now more than ever before, to get closer to the One called Love!

Either way, you’re in good company! This burning heart phenomenon was experienced by Jesus’ downtrodden disciples when Jesus appeared to them in His resurrected body:

Then their eyes were opened and they recognized Him; and He vanished from their sight. They said to one another, ‘Were not our hearts burning within us while He was speaking to us on the road, while He was explaining the Scriptures to us?’ And they got up that very hour and returned to Jerusalem, and found gathered together the eleven and those who were with them. Luke 24:31-33

Hopelessness and Despair Brings Hope
The disciples on the road to Emmaus were broken and hurt. They didn’t understand why Jesus had died. We can practically hear their thoughts as we read the story in Luke 24. They wonder, We thought Jesus was our Messiah, and now He’s gone—dead. What do we do now? There’s nowhere to go. So, they give up and go back to their old lives as fishermen. But then, there He is—Jesus in His glorified body. Yet, they have no idea who He is. He asks them what is bothering them, and in amazement, as though this stranger lives under a rock, they ask, “Do you not know?”
He continues to talk with the brokenhearted disciples for a while, explaining the importance of the crucifixion; eventually, He disappears. The disciples look at one another and recognize that deep, inner burning in their hearts, and they say, “Oh! It was Him! It was Him!”

How did they know?

Their hearts burned within them. All of a sudden, they experienced the fellowship of the burning hearts. And in that place of intimacy and revelation, even in their brokenness, Jesus came. Jesus showed up in His glorified body, but because of their overwhelming emotions, they didn’t recognize Him. They were focused on earthly things instead of heavenly things. Instead of rebuking them, Jesus came into their brokenness and encountered them in His glorified body, causing their hearts to burn. Suddenly, they began to remember what it was like to be with Him. They knew it had to be Him.

It Had to Be Him!
The disciples knew they had been with Him because of the physical, emotional, and spiritual burning that continued even after He vanished. This burning heart phenomenon also happened to the prophets of old, like David, Moses, Isaiah, and Jeremiah. David’s heart burned with passion for the Lord (Ps. 39:3). He desired one thing and was called a “man after God’s own heart” (Ps. 27:4; 1 Sam. 13:4, Acts 13:22). Moses talked to God face to face and breath to breath (Ex. 33:11, 18; Num. 12:8). Isaiah’s fiery encounter in Isaiah 6 with the coal to his lips transformed him from fearful and timid to bold and fearless (Is. 6:6-13). Jeremiah had fire in his heart and bones that compelled him to be true to his commission, even if it meant death (Jer. 20:9). But to these disciples, this was an awakening to the deep inner witness and recognition of the One with whom they were walking—the Christ.

What To Do With The Burning
Many find themselves feeling like they are of a few with this burning on the inside, not knowing what to do with it. I encourage you to keep on praying, worshipping, and intimately encountering the Lord! Pray about and find a local chuch expression of other burning ones with whom you can fellowship. The Lord will connect you with other burning hearts!

 

My heart’s desire is to see the body of Christ functioning in unity! David writes of a promise of the Lord about this in Psalm, “For from this realm of sweet harmony, God will release His eternal blessing, the promise of life forever!” (133: 3 TPT). Below is an excerpt from my upcoming book, Permission to Burn, describing how we have witnessed this unity manifest firsthand, out of worshipping the Lord!

Over the past few years, God has given me the privilege of traveling and holding 24-hour continuous worship and prayer events with ministry leaders, worshipers, prayer warriors, musicians, and singers from different ministries and backgrounds. He’s given me the opportunity to gather together those who love Him for 24 hours of fellowship in His presence. Through these meetings, we have received such powerful revelations of His desire to obliterate hindrances like denominations, theologies, and religious formulas. During these meetings, the hearts of the people have been knit together so strongly by the power of being in His presence that we use the word family when we talk about it with one another. Just 24 hours of being with our Father together, with no agenda, causes the walls of division to come tumbling down.

Where there is misunderstanding, the Lord brings understanding by the power of His Spirit. This revelation is awakening in the hearts of His people, enabling them to lay down their differences and enter into a place of worship and prayer that brings unity. This unity has absolutely nothing to do with tolerating one another. Instead, it is about allowing the presence of God to awaken love in our hearts for one another like we’ve never experienced before. In His presence, repentance and reconciliation become more real than the air we breathe. This is not fake tolerance or lukewarm political handshaking that appears to be unity but is not. This is real!

In His presence, we find fullness of joy and unconditional love. In His presence, we can reestablish the foundation work that King David set into place when he established a tent of meeting for the nation to encounter the presence of God (see 1 Chron. 15:1–29). King David established day-and-night prayer and worship as the foundation of a place of meeting. In God’s presence, we find freedom, deliverance, and true awakening (see 2 Cor. 3:17).

When we allow God to move through us however He desires, competition ceases. This is why we must learn to minister to God before we minister to people. Corporate worship and corporate prayer, guided by His Spirit, build a movement that hell can’t stop. In this place, we find the freedom to burn together for Him. Making prayer and worship the foundation allows us to love each other with the love of God in a way that cannot be accomplished by mere human wisdom or mental understanding of the Scriptures. This is why He gave us His Spirit—to awaken us to His heart. “‘Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the Lord Almighty” (Zech. 4:6 NIV).

I would love to hear your stories of how you’ve experienced unity in the body of Christ! Comment below!