This word has been burning in me for weeks and I’m happy to finally get it out and share it with you all. A prophetic word of encouragement and insight from my season in America: ‘How to open new doors into your destiny- The hidden place of judgment and mercy.’
At the beginning of this year the Lord gave me a very clear dream, in it he said he wanted to take me to America to show me the many stories of his family because he REALLY wanted me to know and understand them. He said it was going to take a while as he wanted to take his time with me and the trip would be longer than expected, he was calling me away for many reasons.
I've learnt many things while I’ve been here, and managed to find my feet leading me into some incredible new places, into people's lives, hearts and homes. This word comes from a place where Ive been wrestling with the very real dynamic of judgements in the family of God and from the woundings of racism worldwide; a great light topic to start with!! I don't mess around!!
Heidi Baker from Iris ministries in Mozambique was very open with us as she spoke this weekend at the United Pursuit Reunion camp in Nashville, Tennessee. She said that her heart was deeply changed at a point in her journey where she realised she had judged a lot of the different expressions of the church because she thought she was better than them for serving the poor, the Lord needed to lead her through some powerful encounters with heaven to wholeheartedly fall in LOVE with the WHOLE body of Christ and not just the poor, while having these judgements and bias's washed away in her heart. This LOVE in her heart surprisingly became like a doorway that then began to open up relationships and opportunities in many new nations for her to go and minister. It was LOVE that opened the door for her into over 100 nations, not a desire to minister or build a ministry. We will only ever have authority in the place that we truly have LOVE.
One thing I am acutely aware of is how my heart is growing in a deeper love for the diverse body of Christ here in the USA and globally in this season of my life. It's literally melting as preconceived ideas and religious conditioning about differences in what the church is like or ‘supposed to be like’ are being stripped from my heart and thinking. As I am away from all my 'comforts' and 'securities' it is being cemented in my heart again and again how dependant we are in the simple yet essential daily love of the global family of God (no matter how strange they are), how content I am becoming in this is a beautiful thing.
Keep reading, I’m about to be very honest and open with you all!
People have been asking me how I do this, how I have the courage to go to new places, to travel and put myself out there to meet people, some have a genuine concern that I’m ‘lost or wondering and wasting time’…others I am realising are inspired and encouraged.
Firstly, God has wired me this way, its apart of my design and make up and I am finally feeling secure and confident in who I am and will continue to be! I believe I will go to many many more nations as I continue to Love!
The only way I can come away like this and flourish is to stay deeply rooted and connected to my own heart, Gods heart and the hearts of other believers, but my key gem is that I fully trust that he is with me and I let him lead, as I remain in LOVE to just see the one in front of me and be present with them, it’s so simple. I do not elevate myself to think I have something more to give than others, as we so often do in a white supremacy culture, but I remain in a place where I know that it goes both ways- I need and I give!
Just like Heidi Baker experienced, it is LOVE that has opened up these doors for me that fear never will or possibly could. LOVE will always open doors but fear and judgments will keep you restrained and bound up. I could never go where I go if I were judging the very people I am supposed to be reaching!
Over many years of me stepping out in faith, obedience and boldness to travel to new places with the Lord I've found that my movements have challenged others around me to feel uncomfortable and unsure with my ability and courage to step out and walk through new doors. I've found there to be a dynamic in some relationships where my freedom can cause others to become uncomfortable because it reflects their own places of restrain and fear, and sadly some seem to judge or try to control me. Whenever Jesus stepped out to be bold and be different it was the religious people who judged him as doing the ‘wrong thing’ simply because it made them uncomfortable in what they thought was the ‘right way’. Religion is fear, control and judgement full stop. On the other hand, I've found that wherever I've gone the Lord has used me in special and powerful ways to encourage individuals who need courage, love or a word in season. I never feel compelled to post on FB and share the ways God uses me while I travel, because that’s between me and him. But I’m tired of the voice of religion and judgement that comes against the people of God when they step out to follow his voice and follow him! It grieves me that we judge difference and things that make us uncomfortable so often.
Some of you are reading this and really resonate and feel a wound in your heart from where religion has stood in your path and tried to rationalise with you to not step out and take the road less travelled, whatever it is- Im not referring to just missions here, but anything!I just use that experience from my journey as an example because its been a big part of my story- it could be starting a new business, releasing a new song or book, changing faith community's or stepping out in faith when you don't know what it looks like and people expect to you tell them the plan. You see we are born for faith not certainty! Religion likes to stay in control and know whats happening, but following Jesus is just that...following him where he leads despite knowing! Its so liberating when we follow his voice!
Jesus is breaking this hold over your life today and is breathing a fresh courage into your heart and mind to realise how free you really are to follow him where he calls you! God is healing you where judgments have stuck from your brothers and sisters who have not understood or supported you fully in your calling, we can never fully know someone else's calling. The Lord is saying that it truly is a new season for you to step out and begin to take those risks that you have been waiting for someone to tell you to take! ITS TIME!! People are not going to tell you to do it, the LORD IS!
Only LOVE will open the doors for us to walk through into new opportunities, fear and control will always be the force that tries to stop what the spirit breathes freedom on to, its painted all through history and it continues today, no matter what situation it is- in or out of the church walls, it seems to rear its ugly head up at some point. Sadly, I am just as guilty as others in judging people who have made me uncomfortable, and I realise this judgment has stopped doors from opening in my own life.
God is dealing with roots of judgment in the hearts of his people in this hour and those who are humble like clay are the ones who can hear his voice gently correct us into new places of mercy. Some of us thought that we were being discerning when we were actually judging. Judgment is the counter spirit to discernment and its easy for prophetic people to sway between the two of them, we’re all human and go through this learning as we grow in our gifts. I know I have done this hundreds of times, but the Lord is purifying discernment in our hearts and maturing our hearts to see through undefiled Love. James 2:13 says that 'Mercy triumphs over Judgement', how great a truth that is!!
God is giving his people new eyes to LOVE his incredibly unique and diverse family and realise where judgment and fear needs to be cleaned out from our hearts otherwise relationships will suffer, people groups will remain oppressed, the gospel will not spread to new places and we will never truly be one body! This is so deeply reflected to me in this nation as I touch the tip of the ice berg around the wounds of racism. Judgement separates and will keep you locked in the same stale old place! Only LOVE will open the doors that you are longing to open!
My desire is that we can put down our stones, take a step back and recognise where judgement has caused pain and estrangement in the whole body, and begin to love and embrace differences. Ask yourself ‘Is there fear or judgement in your own heart that is actually stopping doors opening for you because only LOVE will lead the way forward?’ Just like Heidi Baker had a heart adjustment and doors began to swing open soon after, I believe that many are going to see new doors open that they have longed to see open for years as you allow the Lord to deal with these judgements or predispositions in your heart. There is no shame at all! Just the cleansing power of the cross at work in all of us!
These are just some thoughts Ive been having as Ive met with many believers on this trip and gotten really honest about some of the deeper places in the heart of this nation and my own. I have become a lot more comfortable and confident in my unique design and calling this year as I recognise where religion had me believing certain things about myself that just weren't true. I know that Love has opened these doors to a great adventure. My prayer is that you will feel the Spirit gently lead you to where you need to be in this season and bring these important shifts in your heart and mind to continue to move forward and flourish in your unique calling.
Many blessings and courage to you all!