James 4:14 AMP “Yet you do not know (the least thing) about what may happen tomorrow. What is the nature of your life? You are (really) but a wisp of vapor (puff of smoke, a mist) that is visible for a little while and then disappears (into thin air). ”
What if we were chosen by God to live at an appointed time, supplied with designer DNA given everything necessary to fulfill a very specific purpose on the earth and even formed “pre-packaged” with essential nutrients of spiritual gifts and talents needed for others? Consider that you were truly born for one reason: just to be given the opportunity to participate in an ongoing Olympics as a Spiritual Athlete. Your Olympic performance – more commonly known as LIFE – allows for God your maker to watch you develop, train and execute this spiritual athleticism on the Earth.
Even further – that the sole reason you were even knitted and then birthed into the world was to allow for the opportunity to have an eternal relationship with God because quite obviously without ever being born – you could never live – eternally. God Himself desired that you be with Him in Heaven.
Hello Mr. Mist and Ms. Vapor: You are given the brief chance to display your gifts and talents to and for God to the best of your ability for one primary purpose – to insure the name of His Son’s renown and to advance God’s kingdom. #thatisall
Well (you might say) I am 43 years old and did not know this – my training has not yet begun, I do not even know where to start! Why is God so cruel as to set me up for such a high stakes game I was unaware I was even playing ? Mr. Mist, this is why you are reading this post. Lace up your Converse and start those wind sprints. (Pray for wisdom and understanding of your purpose asking God to give you an abundance of clues that reveal your purpose.) Change your diet and consecrate your life. ( Purchase a bible version that you understand. Feed on the word daily. Spend time daily with God. ) Identify mature mentors that are where you would like to be spiritually. (Find a strong bible based church with a pastor that teaches Jesus and the full gospel. Volunteer for Christ centered initiatives that truly impact people) For then, you will be on the practice field in no time! Hallelujah! #GoFightWin
II Corinthians 5:10 “For we must all appear and be revealed as we are before the judgement seat of Christ, so that each one may receive (His pay) according to what he has done in the body, whether good or evil [considering what his purpose and motive have been, and what he has achieved, been busy with, and given himself and his attention to accomplishing.]”
So God not only allows you the opportunity to live in Heaven with Him // FOREVER // because (please remember) He wants you there – while on earth He gives you the chance (and ability) to run this race earning medals and trophies along the way to be exchanged for eternal rewards handed to you by Christ Himself. It is unclear if these “rewards” are physical or simply greater responsibilities in Heaven. Certainly the ‘Greatest Reward’ will be living in Heaven itself.
So back to James 4:14 “what is the nature of your life” aside from being “just a vapor”? What does this word “nature” mean? Nature is personality, make up, character, temperament, identity. The nature of God is one of the most difficult things to explain, but we do know He is: holy, love, just, divine, sovereign, righteous – the following is an in depth article on the nature of God:
How does your nature affect your ability to become a Spiritual Athlete? Are there hindering roadblocks in your life? Potholes, water hazards, high prevailing winds? Your nature can be changed through your committed relationship with Christ and a sincere desire to run His race, unshackled, and not your own. Then You Will Be Free.
Tracy L Gatewood
Sacred Ramblings 2018 All Rights Reserved
SPECIAL WORD: This article was first posted on my other blog; Marketplace & Ministry and pertains to the upcoming U.S. Senate election in Alabama to finish out the remaining turn of Jeff Session’s. On this blog, Sacred Ramblings – I never wade into politics but am making one exception because of the extraordinary political climate in which we now live. Even if you do not live in Alabama, I hope you will find something in which to relate. God Bless America – Tracy
In the Hebrew language, everything, even numbers, has a specific meaning. Every letter, every name of a person, place or thing, every number and combination ofnumbers has meaning. Early in scripture we see that God intentionally changed Abram’s name to ‘Abraham’ or Father of Many Nations. The name David means ‘Beloved’, the Hebrew word Petros, means ‘large piece of rock’. The Apostle Peter’s given name was Simon but Jesus changed it to Peter (Cephas) because He would ask Peter to be the builder to lay the foundation for the Church. The name Jabez means ‘Pain’. The city of Bethel is Hebrew for House of God, Beersheba means ‘oath’ or ‘well of seven’ and was the place where Abraham and Abimelech struck an oath or pledge. I hope you are getting my point that everything in scripture is rich with meaning and is quite specific.
Dates have meaning. Most know that 5 is the number in Hebrew representing Grace and Favor. The number 6 is the number of Man, 7 is completion and perfection – Christ was pierced 7 times signifying His work was perfected and complete. (Note: The Old Testament was written in Hebrew and the New Testament Greek ). We are currently living in the Hebrew Year of 5778 – 5 (Grace), 7 (Completion or Perfection), 8 (New Beginnings). I have heard many refer to this as the Year of the Open Door.
The number ’12’ is the Hebrew number for faith, the church and divine rule and is most commonly referred to as the number of Government. It is considered a perfect number and symbolizes God’s power and authority in scripture. The number 12 is used in scripture when the Government of God is being established. Twelve serves as the perfect foundation for Government.
Jesus had 12 Disciples (Apostles) Jacob had 12 sons, each representing a different tribe Solomon had 12 Governors over Israel 12 spies were sent into the Promised Land or Canaan Jesus boyhood age was mentioned once, when He was 12 There are 12 judges in the book of Judges.
12 Gates in Heaven
Using the law of first mention for the number twelve – it too points to government. Gen. 17:20 And as for Ishmael, I have heard and heeded you, behold, I will bless him and will make him fruitful and multiply him exceedingly. He will be the father of twelve princes, and I will make him a great nation. (Gen. 25:16 ).
The book of Revelation has the most references to the number 12.
Revelation 22:1-2 “Then He showed me the river whose waters give life, sparkling like crystal, flowing out from the throne of God and of the Lamb. Though the middle of the broadway of the city; also, on either side of the river was the tree of life with its twelve varieties of fruit; yielding each month (12) its fresh crop; and the leaves of the tree were for the healing and for the restoration of the nations.”
Within the United States Government – there are also established uses of the number 12:
12 Circuit Court judges
12 Jurors to deliberate a trial
12 Districts for the Federal Reserve
The number 12 represents authority, appointment and completeness.
It would be impossible for me to notice and then not mention that the upcoming #ALSEN Alabama U.S. Senate race between Roy Moore (GOP) and Doug Jones (Democrat) to replace Jeff Sessions Senate seat falls on the date of Tuesday, December 12 or 12-12. This is very significant. The number 12 is used in scripture when the Government of God is being established. I find this fascinating given Judge Moore’s history [ Refusing to remove the 10 Commandments from the Federal Courthouse and taking a stand against same-sex marriage) the decisions over the past few years that he has made while in office even through his loss of office (twice!) as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Alabama.
This is a crucial time to review the party platforms. A person occupying this high level office will be bound to support, undergird and uphold the planks of this platform as well as support the President’s agenda. In the event that you need a refresher; please see supporting links for these parties and related document –
I will leave you to read these and determine for yourselves which one of these two men should be awarded your vote to hold this office. Either way, if God is establishing His Government in and within Alabama – I believe that we already know who has His vote.
Tracy L Gatewood
Sharing Link: https://wp.me/p1zoxs-2yp
Originally posted on Marketplace and Ministry
All Rights Reserved 2017
All scripture presented from the Amplified version.
Amazon Author: Doorways of Grace: My Uncommon Journey to Healing, Wholeness and Meeting Jesus
FB: Tracy Gatewood Christian Teacher Writer
Driving home after a long day, my radio tuned to a worship music station, praise music saturated every inch of my vehicle’s interior. Despite the frustrations and strife of the day – the negative emotions clinging to my soul fell away, as a welcoming spirit of peace wafted through my mind, lifting up and away all the tensions of the day. This effortless transference of peace was sent special delivery from the courts of heaven. Peace is a gift bequeathed to us from Jesus, by Jesus Himself, as reward when we focus on Him.
II Chronicles 20:21-25 AMP“When he had consulted with the people, he appointed singers to sing to the Lord and praise Him in their holy (priestly) garments as they went out before the army, saying’Give thanks to the Lord, for His mercy and loving-kindness endure forever’!
And when they began to sing and praise, the Lord set ambushments against the men of Ammon, Moab, and Mount Seir who had come against Judah, and they were (self) slaughtered; For (suspecting betrayal) the men of Ammon and Moab rose against those of Mount Seir utterly destroying them. And when they had made an end of the men of Seir, they all helped to destroy one another. And when Judah came to the watchtower of the wilderness, they looked at the multitude, and behold they were dead bodies fallen to the earth, and none had escaped!
When Jehosophat and his people came to take the spoil, they found among them much cattle, goods, garments, and precious things which they look for themselves, much more than they could carry away, so much they were three days in gathering the spoil.
On the fourth day they assembled in the Valley of Beracah. There they blessed the Lord. So the name of the place is still called the Valley of Beracah (blessing).
Then they returned, every man of Judah and Jerusalem, Jehosophat leading them, to Jerusalem with joy, for the Lord had made them to rejoice over their enemies.
They came to Jerusalem with harps, lyres, and trumpets to the house of the Lord.
And the fear of God came upon all the kingdoms of those countries when they heard that the Lord had fought against the enemies of Israel.”
I believe the Lord has provided a spiritual tactic designed to strategically dismantle dangerous mayhem. This is an interior piece of the puzzle given just to believers who are forced to confront a unified tsunami of opposing forces that incite strife, division and evil across the globe. The piece? TheWeapon of Praise. A powerful tool that can be enacted outside of the four walls of the church, strategically positioned in external outposts at the forefront of the lines of battle.
In today’s society, the media is weaponized, some departments of our national intelligence community appear to be weaponized, and even certain members of the conservative movement are weaponized – but these are not spiritual weapons of warfare from heavenly places.
In II Chronicles, The Lord provides for us an example of ‘battle’ in spiritual places, instructing us to ‘battle’ with praise to Him then promising to deliver us from our enemies. Seems simple. So why aren’t we using it?
With the clashing of swords in this Hebrew year 5777 , we are witnessing unprecedented levels of lawlessness and civil unrest, and not witnessed since the 1960’s. During the latter part of the Obama administration, the cities of Ferguson, Baltimore and Miami – were hosts to incendiary levels of rage and violence incapacitating city governments, in some instances, destroying the livelihoods of people that they purported to defend. Now the American people are clashing over its very history and heritage.
But what about praise? Jehosphat sent his worshippers praising God while walking ahead of these armies, each wearing priestly garments saying ‘Give thanks to the Lord for His mercy and loving-kindness endure forever!’ I have a theory – and as yet untested on a modern day battlefield; to release praise music in advance of or during demonstrations to disengage these spirits of violence. Like opening a fireman’s hose on a raging fire, the aggressive flames of emotional spirits of anger, hatred, aggression, murder and rage, could go silent. I ponder why the impact of praise music would be any different within the atmosphere of my own vehicle than on any modern day battlefield. Imagine the impact of Hillsong, Chris Tomlin, Kari Jobe, Christy Nockels songs released prior to a demonstration or during the fray in the heat of the battle – singing the name of Jesus over and over and over again – above these protests. It is Jesus Christ Himself that has bequeathed us Peace. Would He not send us His Peace if we proactively sought it? Peace is a spirit. [ July 2017 The Spirit of Peace: http://wp.me/p1zoxs-24p ]
ll Timothy 1:7 AMP For God did not give us a spirit of timidity (of cowardice, of craven and cringing and fawning fear), but (He has given us a spirit) of power and of love and of calm and well-balanced mind and discipline and self-control.
To effectively confront the societal enemies of our time we must come from a secret place of ‘power, and of love, and of calm and well-balanced mind and discipline and self-control’. The songs of praise set us into another dimension – apart from fear, self righteousness, and our human tendency to dissect the what’s and how’s of every situation. Praising God is a declaration that He is trusted as our defender (Jehovah Nissi). Praise positions our minds for right instruction and divine strategy from Him in how to move ahead in these troubling and even dangerous environments.
Could Jehosophat have understood that the instruction from God to send the ‘Praise Team’ ahead of the armies would result in a strong confusion and in-fighting among the enemy camp? Could Jehosophat foresee that a win of his armies positioned his people for a significant wealth transfer? I doubt it. He simply followed God’s orders and won….. BIG.
We must engage in praise to God while listening for the the Holy Spirit’s direction for ourselves and our nation amidst the clamor and chaos of today. He is surely speaking.
Tracy L. Gatewood
Sunday morning in response to the appeal on 21martyrs.com, I prayed for the persecuted church and Christians around the world that are falling into the hands of extremist murderers. My big question to God was, Where are the Apostles? Where is Apostle Peter, Where is Apostle Paul, Where is Apostle John – We need them, What would they do in this situation? If they don’t show up, I’m yelling, “Come Lord Jesus and Come …. Now! ” Anybody out there with me?
Where are modern day Apostles; global Generals of The Church of Jesus to condemn these practices, and convene other leaders of the Church for calls to action as its people and churches are under attack by these devils? Where is the voice for the zero tolerance on these atrocities by Christians worldwide? We need our global Christian leaders with Apostolic callings that hear from the Holy Spirit to step forward to devise effective global solutions, partner with governments and lead the spiritual sectors of the world. The Church can no longer function where it simply prioritizes Small Group member numbers and volunteer headcounts as their primary focus.
I’m not a prophet, but I do have an educated theory that Satan has unleashed these devils at this time upon the earth because he too believes that Jesus’ return is very close. These tyrannical practices of murdering Christians are a last ditch effort to subdue the earth. I further believe that this outpouring of evil fueled by Satan is occurring as a direct reaction to the preaching of the gospel of Grace that is pouring across the entire world. Grace is the true gospel message based on the Love of God for all mankind, and the power held in the sacrifice of Jesus; in His body and His blood. The true Gospel is built on the foundation of the blood of Jesus and not in identity or performance. The blood of Jesus simply enrages Satan. I guess by now he has read the end of The Book.
Every church in the world can be engaging in weekly, Jesus-focused, unified prayer over these atrocities. God responds to the prayers of His people – He is Listening. Prayer is the most powerful source of communication that we have as Believers. Praying back these devils and showing gratitude to Jesus who by His blood and mercy, has put ALL demonic power under His feet. Jesus has provided His people with the same authority and devices to put these forces out of business by using the creative power and understanding given by the Holy Spirit. Are we listening to the Spirit on what to do? I have to believe He is Speaking.
Every church in the world can have an ISIS / Extremists line item in their budget to earmark toward prayer rallies, funds for refugees, and programs like Congressman Frank Wolf’s Wilberforce Initiative. The combined Protestant and Catholic churches have practically limitless financial resources and human capital if we can agree together on objectives that will have the strongest impact and stop depending upon the governments of the world to figure it out. For the moment, we need global Christian leaders to step forward that have the power, the influence and the courage to convene other Christian leaders and all Christian people around the world. I can call them out in this article however I will let the Holy Spirit speak to them individually and in His own way, but we as Christians know who they are across the globe.
Anti-Christ is a spirit and we are watching in real time this demonic spirit seduce people into believing that crucifying children, repeatedly raping women and beheading men for their beliefs is justified. We watch as they overtake city’s, regions and soon nations. To date, the nation of Israel has not been overrun by these devils. These enemies will know they will get their teeth kicked in when they cross Israel’s borders, and will be in for the fight of their existence. The United States must send aid to Israel to fight these extremists. In case you need an idea, sending Israel money to combat terrorism is another objective that can be considered under your church’s budget line item of Extremists. Israel will need aid and lots of it to fight this accursed plague that is swarming its neighbors in the Middle East. Israel requires our support to win.
As a New Covenant intercessor, I am committing my prayer time and focus to the global Church, the Kingdom Government and all Apostolic Christian Leaders around the globe that will hear from the Spirit and move on their specific role in these final days of fortress building around the Saints and the innocents of the world. It’s time to move.
From October 2009 to early summer of 2012, I earned a PhD in FEAR during a remarkable season of transition. From the time that I made a commitment to move back to my hometown in July 2009 until 3 years later – I white knuckled my way through a lengthy list of peaks and (far and away mostly) valleys. If you have ever walked through a Job season, then you can clearly relate to what I am referring. My family and close friends watched in disbelief as a series of extreme circumstances came in wave after wave over several years, but in the fullness of His time, but by His grace, God redeemed my desperate and bleak situation, opening up new avenues of hope and restoration.
Joel 2:23-26 AMPBe then glad, you children of Zion, and rejoice in the Lord, your God; for He gives you the former or early rain in just measure and in righteousness, and He causes to come down for you the rain, the former rain and the latter rain as before. And the (threshing) floors shall be full of grain and the vats shall overflow with juice (of the grape) and oil. And I will restore or replace for you the years that the locust has eaten-the hopping locust; the stripping locust, and the crawling locust, My great army which I sent among you. And you shall eat in plenty and be satisfied and praise the name of the Lord, your God. Who has dealt wondrously with you. And my people shall never be put to shame.
During this season I had well meaning friends, say to me any number of things, “Tracy, where’s your faith?”, I had never struggled with my faith, actually I always believed that I had very strong faith but no amount of faith was turning around these problems or “Why don’t you just get a job!”, like I had not been looking under every rock for one for over a year, or telling me that I was going in the wrong direction in returning back to Tuscaloosa – even after I had explained exhaustively that God had told me to move back. One couple whom I mistakenly trusted, successfully convinced me that I had waited too long to move after being called by God to do so and I was obviously being chastened. Unfortunately, I allowed this latter remark to seep into my soul, and this was one of 3 primary reasons that I slipped into a downward, even vertical spiral of total condemnation that almost destroyed my mind. Condemnation will kill you. Fear will kill you, too.
A Description of Fear
Fear is an evil spirit. That’s right, what most people associate with horror movies or witches, fear spirits are in the unseen realm that surround us. Just like Angels are in the unseen, a person cannot see an evil spirit. If you accept one you should accept the existence of the other. Fear is also an emotional response to a real and undesired situation however it is when fear is left to run rampant and unabated, continually flailing around in a person’s mind, is when this spirit has the ability to lodge into a soul and wreak havoc in the life of anyone. All people are made up of (3) things: Spirit, Soul and Body. If you have accepted Christ, then your spirit is connected to the Holy Spirit which is how you hear the will of God, your soul is comprised of (3) things: your mind, your will and your emotions.
Throughout this season of fear, I had the choice of either learning how to combat this spirit or allow it to kill me. I decided I wanted to fight and to live. After observing the effects of extreme fear at a very close range for a prolonged season, I concluded the following:
1) The enemy always enters a person’s mind or soul cloaked in a spirit of fear or cloaked in a spirit of condemnation. Even the slightest root of fear can open the door to a full blown attack. Keep the fear door closed tightly.
2) Fear acts as a portal into a person’s soul through which every negative emotion can and will flow: confusion, depression, suicide, insecurity, greed, envy, jealousy, trauma, abuse, shame, and terror. Its always Fear (or condemnation) First before the associated negative emotion kicks in.
3) The immediate response to a spirit of fear must be trust in God (belief versus unbelief). Keep faith building scripture verses close at hand to combat fear, just as you would keep Vitamin C and Zinc close at hand if you have a cold. Faith is the antidote to fear. Speak these verses ALOUD.
4) Fear is the enemy’s heaven – fear is like oxygen to the demonic.
5) If the spirit of fear is not present, the enemy has nothing to convert to evil – he has nothing on which to “latch” himself to a person. This is an essential point to grasp in the understanding of the subject of fear and strategy of the enemy.
Jesus, Your Great High Priest Hebrews 8: 6-7
But as it is now, He (Christ) has acquired a (priestly) ministry which is as much superior and more excellent (than the old) as the covenant (the agreement) of which He is the Mediator (the Arbiter, Agent), is superior and more excellent, (because) it is enacted and rests upon more important promises. For if that first covenant had been without defect, there would have been no room for another one or an attempt to institute another one.
This might be your first exposure to New Covenant terminology, and if so, I wish that I had the time to completely round out this wonderful topic in its entirety but this article is blog length. When Jesus was sacrificed on the cross, His resurrection served as ratification of a brand New Covenant (agreement) with all people that have accepted Him as their Savior. There are many, many things that shifted from the Old Testament over to the New following the crucifixion but in regards to freedom, Jesus’ death and specifically His blood, bought back from the enemy, our ability to walk in complete freedom at our will, through the power of the Holy Spirit. You have been given the ability to self deliver – you have the ability to pray for healing for yourself and call on God’s power to answer your prayer. If you are struggling with any emotional issue in your mind -(1) picture yourself standing firmly rooted and grounded in the love of God – God’s perfect love will cast out fear. Drawing on God’s love for you will bring confidence.(2) Understand that Jesus has purchased your right of ownership to a sound mind (He is Jehovah Shalom-the Prince of Peace), and your mind can now be calibrated into rest and to the perfect mind of Christ. This was won for you at The Cross.
Binding and Loosing
Although rarely taught, the scriptural way to eradicate a spirit; fear, depression, suicide, confusion, condemnation or anything previously mentioned is a technique that is so simple, and it is how Jesus Himself instructs us to control things we choose to declare to be unlawful or improper. In fact He states in Matthew 16:19 that He is giving us the ” keys to the kingdom “.
Matthew 16:19 AMP
“I will give you the keys to the kingdom of heaven; and whatever you bind (declare to be improper and unlawful) on earth must be what is already bound in heaven: and whatever you loose (declare lawful) on earth must be what is already loosed in heaven.”
When you bind, and rebuke a spirit – you send it packing. Binding it up, renders it null and void. Conversely, you can loose or release an opposite spirit (joy, hope, a sound mind), right back into yourself or another person for whom you are praying. It’s right there in the bible. Jesus Himself holds the Key of David:
Isaiah 22:22 – And the key of the house of David I will lay upon His shoulder: He shall open and no one shall shut, He shall shut and no one shall open.
This is Jesus. Jesus is the literal Tree of Life.
The Gospel of Grace allows us to be transformed by Jesus from glory to glory and it also allows for some tactical “moves” that are administrated by the Holy Spirit. If you want to free yourself from fear – declare it aloud and speak to the fear like it was a person (actually it is a thing). Tell that spirit that your are binding and breaking it in the name of Jesus and by the blood of Jesus. Acknowledge the work of Jesus on the cross in Isaiah 53. Stand firmly planted in the love of God and believe that you are standing firm from a victorious stance, never fighting from a position of defeat. You are not your emotions, and these things cannot continue to remain if you identify them, carefully bind them, rebuke them and ask God to send them away. Although you are speaking the words, this is a work of the Holy Spirit and Jesus holds the keys to close the door on these offenders.
It is so simple – no process – and it is God’s Recipe for Success and Freedom From Fear and Condemnation.
Please note: If you follow me on WordPress, I am changing the name of this blog to match my Twitter account ~ sacredramblings.com. When account names are changed WordPress cautions that you can lose all manner of things so if I lose you, please come back to me 🙂 and sign up for sacredramblings.com. Peace and Grace to you and let me know if I can pray for your emotional healing and freedom from fear!