At the age of 51, my life started completely over in every conceivable way; new city, career seeker, little to no financial resources, no church home and no relationships. My 20 year marketing career had taken a vertical death spiral following a coup attempt by a disgruntled assistant who trashed me behind my back almost from the point of hiring. (FYI: The quiet ones, and the flatterers are always the most dangerous. ). After being terminated from a very public position, my career spun into a nose dive and stayed there from the ages of 48 – 50. The Lord started closing every door, I believe, to “encourage” me to follow His leading of returning me to a place that I very much did not want to go. At the age of 50, I relented, returning to my home town confused, desperate, angry (very) hopeless, broke and near the point of nervous collapse.
A few years before this traumatic season, I had earned my real estate license but held it in inactive status considering to use it “one day”. Establishing a commercial real estate career can become an expensive proposition. That “one day” came when a family friend called 10 months after I had returned home, still unemployed, nor knowing where to turn. This family friend, graciously and innocently threw a lifeline to a drowning person that was going under for the third time. ” Tracy, this is Carl, don’t you have your real estate license?” “Yes” I said neglecting to mention that it was inactive and that I had never transacted one piece of property ever. “Well, my #@%** restaurant tenant moved out in the middle of the night”, he explained “and I need someone to market my building and find me a new tenant as soon as possible.” I agreed to meet with him then quickly placed a call to inquire of what was needed to activate my license. Gunning it over to a local broker’s office the same day, I explained to the owner that I was in need of a desk, a phone and a place to hang my license asap. He gave me a private office, a laptop computer and paid for my first year of dues, nothing for which I had asked but glad to receive. I was so poor five hundred dollars was more than I had to spare.
Nine months later, Carl and his new premier tenant, executed my first lease transaction for his 5000 SF corner landmark downtown property. A divine grace door had opened for me through Carl providing a clear path for provision because God had placed me on Carl’s mind and connected all the other necessary dots. The process of securing the tenant was not simple, and entailed hard work. The money did not fall from the sky but the opportunity presented itself, the door swung wide, and I was offered a choice to walk through the frame.
Later in that same year, the Holy Spirit gave me a hot tip regarding a 5 AC corner parcel with an obsolete shopping center, strategically located 3 blocks from an SEC University stadium. Eighteen months later that property was under contract and closed for $5.1 million, at that time, the highest price paid per acre for any parcel in the city. That was my first sale. The broker that gave me the initial opportunity made $40,000 on that one deal for doing no more than investing in me.
It would be glorious to be able to say that every year has been just like these – and that year over year my production increased to such enormous heights that I would never have a financial concern for the rest of my life. Seven years later after walking through the door of real estate – I have had highs and lows. My rags story is transforming into financial stability and prosperity while allowing me to give to non profit causes at higher and higher levels which brings me great joy. But the greatest highlight of this journey is what I am gaining in knowledge of the rich treasuries of the grace of God and of Jesus. I am witnessing through my own personal experience the meaning of His salvation.
Salvation means “material and temporal deliverance from danger and apprehension, preservation, pardon, restoration, healing, wholeness and soundness“. Coming out of trouble is part of the package guaranteed to us by being in God’s Kingdom and belonging to Him. He has delivered me from ‘material and temporal danger’ and accomplished everything else on this list. I can tell you with certainty it was Him and not me doing the delivering. If you have never had a need to be brought out of trouble, I feel sorry for you because it means you have never experienced the full power of His delivering hand of salvation. The great news is that we can all look at Him with expectancy for something good to come our way, even despite our mistakes. And I have made my share.
For a number of wasted years, I lived in a confused emotional stew, swirling in extreme levels of condemnation, fear, anger and unforgiveness that kept me bound and broken. I was so messed up and discouraged that I was working very little – if at all. This was a mistake. We are all to be working. God needs us to move out in a direction, and as we set out, He swings in as The Rudder, turning us in His direction but first we have to get in the water and set sail. We have to move.
No doubt, I missed a number of life preservers tossed out in my direction by having no confidence in the basic truth of TRUST. I continued to look inward finding more confidence in myself instead of outward or better still upward, without expecting that God was going to work all of this to my good. Looking inward in prolonged introspection is self righteousness – a sinful action that dispossesses God from His rightful place in life and is based in pure pride. God loves our full dependence upon Him, where we are fully yielded and waiting expectantly for His best. This is the position of Abba and Heavenly Daddy – a Father God with arms wide open to heal and love us unconditionally.
It was only when I learned to focus on Jesus and His finished work and to stop allowing my thoughts to turn inward is when I began to claw my way out of the fog. When my outward confessions began to align with the truth of God’s word – I am the righteousness of God by my faith in Christ Jesus and in His blood and seated in heavenly places with Christ at the Father’s right hand – did the fear and condemnation begin to break apart and dissipate and my mind become clear from the fog. I began to acknowledge and embrace that my provision would definitely come because I Am In JESUS and that every good thing flows from and by the hand of God.
When I lean in and focus on Jesus – He brings clients to me in supernatural ways, He opens doors of favor (which is another word for grace) It is difficult to articulate but activity just begins to happen. At times there is nothing that I am doing, no striving, but an effortless flow that is coming straight from the throne of God.
It has been seven years since I walked through the career door of real estate brokerage. The Hebrew number of completion and perfection is seven. My craft, like me, is still being perfected but after completing my first seven years working for other brokerages, last week, I decided to set sail and work for my own. If you had asked me 10 years ago or even 7 if I believed restoration was possible I would have said probably not or possibly even given a resounding ‘no’! But yes it is – it most certainly is – through the merciful heart of a loving Father that loves to deliver His salvation.
My personal story may not mean anything to anyone but me but it is my hope that in reading or sharing it will encourage someone that needs to understand this same power of which He so freely gives.
“May He [God] grant you out of the rich treasury of His glory to be strengthened and reinforced with mighty power in the inner man by the (Holy) Spirit [Himself ] – indwelling your innermost being and personality ….. that you may be filled (through all your being) unto all the fullness of God [that is] may have the richest measure of the divine Presence, and become wholly filled and flooded with God Himself“
Ephesians 6,19 AMP
All Rights Reserved 2019
Twitter: Tracy L Gatewood
Facebook: Tracy Gatewood Sacred Ramblings
Author: Doorways of Grace: My Uncommon Journey to Healing, Wholeness and
“All the days of the desponding and afflicted are made evil [ by anxious thoughts and forebodings ], but he who has a glad heart has a continual feast [regardless of circumstances ] ” Proverbs 15:15 AMP
” A happy heart is good medicine, and a cheerful mind works by healing, but a broken spirit dries up the bones”. Proverbs 17:22 AMP
” Attitude is a little thing that can make a big difference“. Winston Churchill
Many of us will agree there is a direct, undeniable connection between the mind and the body. It is how to calm and tame the soul (mind, will, emotions) – bringing it to cheerful joy and peace despite circumstances – is what eludes so many.
In 2009, I made a personal decision to return to my hometown after being away since 1979. I put my home on the market and began a job search, hoping to find something quickly as I had been a marketing freelancer which did not translate well in this new much smaller, college town environment. In the summer of 2009, I went on a spiritual retreat designed to free me of fears and habits that had accumulated over time. This was my hometown and a place in which I held unhappy memories and conflicts with family members were ongoing and troubling. In the natural, this did not seem like the right move however, I believed that God had a plan and a purpose for my return.
Following this 4 day retreat, I was attacked by something that I can only describe as a “spirit” as it was supernatural in its make up. Nothing I did would cause it to release. A trained Intercessor, I prayed, and then yes, begged God to remove this spirit that was causing me to stay awake at night – I only received at most 4 hours of sleep, and my heart raced uncontrollably as if I was literally having a heart attack. I felt like I was having what a nervous breakdown must feel like – but understood there was something very different about what was happening and I was correct.
During that 6 week period – I experienced a consistent feeling of terror, the highest degree of fear – that would never disconnect, day or night. It was not brought on by emotion, or circumstances but was supernatural in nature and demonic, a “thing” that tried to take my life and almost did. Suddenly, six weeks after the attack began, it released. I was standing in my living room praying and I felt it lift away – with no warning, just as quickly as it had come upon me. I had been praying for 6 weeks and believe there was nothing unique at that time as to what I said or prayed. Following that attack, I lived in an unfocused fog and detached confusion but months later thankfully that too lifted. This attack taught me survival training regarding prayer and how to hold peace in difficult circumstances. [A near death experience does have a way of gaining your attention. ] Your most important friend in time of great fear and distress is Holy Spirit. He is the Administrator and Coordinator of the Peace that was bequeathed to us from Christ Jesus.
Begin by embracing the Truth that God loves you and that He is for you, no matter what your circumstances. Even if you made a mistake you can always ask Him to turn your mistakes around for your good. He is there with you and sees everything. You must lean into Him and build your relationship with Holy Spirit so that you can hear His direction. He is speaking – you must learn how to hear Him and then do what He says. This is the fastest way out of your circumstances. Pray for Him to impart to you His discernment and skillful and Godly wisdom.
FEAR magnetizes all other unrighteous thoughts, drawing them towards an individual. FEAR is the Red Carpet that provides the jetway for jealousy, murderous rage, anger, covetousness, bitterness, shame, rejection and more – Get your mind under control and press out ALL fear. There are a several ways to tame the Fear dragon, and not one is difficult but each requires enough discipline to become a habit and better still – a default setting – whenever you are hard hit by a Fear Wall.
A) Read God’s Word. It acts as a water hose, rinsing off the dirt and grime that builds up from conversations, watching terror or violence laden TV, or just from being in the workplace. The Word of God is SPIRIT and is living and active. There is actual power in speaking aloud God’s Word – power that moves in the supernatural realm to accomplish our goals, and helps us take dominion over circumstances. There is a wealth of wisdom just in The Proverbs alone. There are 31 chapters of Proverbs, and one for each day. Commit to reading this powerful book.
The word “health” in Hebrew means ‘medicine’ and God’s Word is medicine that brings health to the soul. There is a difference between divine health and divine healing. John G Lake stated, ” Divine healing is the removal by the power of God of the disease that has come upon a body. But divine health is to live day by day, hour by hour in touch with God so that the life of God flows into the body just as the life of God flows into the mind or flows into the spirit.”
B) Call on the power of the Holy Spirit and invoke the Cross in Prayer. This is key. Fear is a spirit – as are the associated spirits of dread, terror, worry and anxiety. Before His death, Jesus bequeathed to all Peace as a gift from Him: “Peace I leave with you; My (own) peace I now give and bequeath to you“. John 14:27 AMP So if Jesus actually gave us His own peace – shouldn’t we have the ability to access it when needed ? Well…. yes we should. Ask the Holy Spirit to cover and protect your mind with the Blood of Jesus and the Helmet of Salvation – a helmet of hope. Pray and acknowledge the verses describing the sacrifice of Jesus: Isaiah 53:5 and place emphasis on the Crown of Thorns that caused the blood of Jesus to flow. This allows for the healing in our minds. I have personally experienced the effect of this many times. Imagine an etch a sketch pad with scribble across it and as you lift up that film, the scribble disappears. This is how thoroughly clean the Holy Spirit can remove unrighteous thinking in your mind when you partner with Him, the Paraclete.
C) Intensely focus your mind on Jesus who is ALL supply. There is no lack in Jesus unless you restrict His supply through your own lack of faith (your fear). Not only is He the bright radiant Son that lights up all of Heaven, He is the Mediator of the Eternal Covenant, our High Priest, the Chief Shepherd, and the Chief Intercessor. His sacrifice created an Eternal Covenant that ties back to the Covenant that God made with Abraham (father of a multitude) because Abram (high exalted father) believed in, trusted in, relied on and remained steadfast to the Lord Who counted it to him as righteousness (Genesis 15:6) Every citizen of the Kingdom of Heaven owns a title deed to the Covenant that God made with Abraham and with Jesus.
You, child of God, walk with favor, even if your present circumstances do not appear that way but you must hold fast to the hope that the Cavalry is coming because Calvary came!
Hope is a confident expectation of good, in every situation, praising God for His goodness.
Frequent drops of hope raining onto a person’s soul creates a consistent flow of faith. Remain in hope. Hope is much different than wishful thinking which is only based on man and not on God. Immerse yourself in hope-filled teachings avoiding teachers of behavior modification that do not understand that Jesus’ power is transformational through faith in Him.
C) Speak Words of Life during difficult circumstances. “Death and life are in the power of the tongue”. Proverbs 18:21 The rest of the verse states “and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof”. Watch your words. Your words set the course for your life and you will have what you say. “Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks” (Matthew 12:34) If you guard your heart – and do not allow fear and emotion to penetrate, this is the surest way that words of hope and life pouring from your mouth.
Remain in innocence – understand that the Lord is your Defender and Avenger. Do not respond in kind to people that are harmful or hateful. The Lord will take care of them in due time. And lastly, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and understanding and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your path.” Proverbs 3:5-6 Embracing this truth of trusting God will put your heart at rest then follow with prayer and ask the Holy Spirit to lead you to the next step of your journey.
Tracy L Gatewood
All Rights Reserved 2019
Twitter: Tracy L Gatewood
Wordpress: Sacred Ramblings
Facebook: Tracy Gatewood Sacred Ramblings
Author: Doorways of Grace: My Uncommon Journey to Healing, Wholeness and Meeting Jesus – this book is available on Amazon
SoundCloud: Tracy L Gatewood
In Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance, there are 10 complete pages, 87 verses per page, devoted to the word ‘child’ or ‘children’. Children are clearly on the heart of God the Father, and Christ the Son. As I ponder all that is currently happening in the ‘Right to Life‘ movement and the ‘Right to Choose‘ movement, it seems, from a Christian perspective, to boil down to One Thing – What would Jesus instruct a woman to do with the life of her unborn child? Clarifying question isn’t it but too simplistic? I don’t think so –
Psalm 139: 13-16 AMP A Psalm of David
“For You did form my inward parts; You did knit me together in my mother’s womb. I will confess and praise You for You are fearful and wonderful and for the awful wonder of my birth! Wonderful are Your works, and that my inner self knows right well. My frame was not hidden from You when I was being formed in secret (and) intricately and curiously wrought [as if embroidered with various colors] in the depths of the earth [a region of darkness and mystery]. Your eyes saw my unformed substance, and in Your book all the days [of my life] were written before ever they took shape, when as yet there was none of them.”
King David’s Psalm pays homage to the Father for forming him before the beginning of the earth, actually “knitting him” in the womb of his mother. The Amplified version further emphasizes that he was embroidered with various colors, meaning David, as are we all, is a unique fabric ‘intricately and curiously’ made by the hand of God with individual skills, spiritual gifts, talents that are given to us by the Holy Spirit. (1 Corinthians 12:8-10).
To know Jesus is to understand that He returned to earth in a “flesh tent” for the redemption of all of mankind, to give each an eternal life that could not be attained through any other means. If we know Him, we are now considered a ‘child of God’ and given a re-birth, not caused by the will of flesh, or the desires of man.
John 1:12-14 AMP
“But to as many as did receive and welcome Him, He gave the authority (power, privilege, right) to become the children of God. That is, to those who believe in (adhere to, trust in, and rely on) – His name. Who owe their birth neither to bloods, nor to the will of the flesh (that of physical impulse), nor to the will of man (that of a natural father), but to God. [They are born of God!] And the Word [Christ] became flesh (human, incarnate) and tabernacle (fixed His tent of flesh, lived awhile) among us; and we (actually) saw His glory [ His honor, His majesty] such glory as only begotten son receives from his father, full of grace (favor, loving-kindness) and truth.”
Why would someone displaying the highest degree of value of the existence of human life and souls, Who lived solely to die – be approving of taking the life of a child before it is ever given the chance to see the light of day? A person knitted together in a womb with a soul; mind, will, and emotions, uniquely fashioned by the hand of God for specific and extraordinary purposes to be accomplished upon the Earth? Can a Believer embrace abortion and still truly Believe? Search your heart. I say no. Emphatically no.
On the eve of Easter, I will share two verses that describe the sacrifice of our Lord, the One that died to give life eternal:
Isaiah 52:15 [ For many the Servant of God became an object of horror; many were astonished at Him] “His face and His whole appearance were marred more than any man’s and His form beyond that of the sons of men, but many were astonished at Him, ” ….. ”
Isaiah 53:5 “But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our guilt and iniquities; the chastisement (needful to obtain) peace and well-being for us was upon Him and with the stripes (that wounded Him), we are healed and made whole.”
Understanding the terrible price that Christ Jesus paid to redeem and then ratify through resurrection, mankind’s ability to have a life eternal – would He approve of a woman’s right to end a human life – a life for which He paid the ultimate price?
I pray for the ones on the fence, in the throes of this decision, that you turn to Jesus and not to self. I pray for the ones that made the decision to choose death, that the voices of condemnation and suffering over “the choice” would cease and you would now raise your voice to stopping this bloodshed – and speak for the voice of the one silenced – until you see them at Heaven’s gate.
All Rights Reserved 2019
Facebook: Tracy Gatewood Sacred Ramblings
SoundCloud: Tracy Gatewood
Author: Doorways of Grace: My Uncommon Journey to Healing, Wholeness
and Meeting Jesus
From the beginning of opening business social media accounts, as a marketplace professional, I have been intentional about incorporating pastors and para church ministry leaders into my communities as “followers”. The Why is very simple. We need each other. The Marketplace needs and benefits from the influence and insights of mature spiritual leadership, ministry leaders depend on the skills and resources delivered from an innovative Marketplace to move their visions forward.
In the spring of 2011, I witnessed this relational need during a time of total devastation. In the transition back to my hometown of Tuscaloosa, AL, I watched, stunned, as meteorologists began frantically broadcasting during a “perfect storm” of atmospheric collisions resulting in an EF-4 tornadic holocaust that cut a 6 mile long swath of devastation killing 56 and taking out 12% of the physical buildings in the city. Immediately, church and lay and marketplace leaders moved into overdrive to save lives and rescue thousands of citizens. It took 3 years for the city to recover. Observing this concert of ministry and marketplace blending forces to create unified chords of hope, healing and restoration was a breathtaking, life altering event. (May 2011: Sacred Ramblings, Equip the Bride: https://wp.me/p1zoxs-k )
I witnessed the church and para church ministries immediately respond to citywide trauma by creating individual “city halls” each with their own leadership structure, and systems of communication and distribution channels to serve the recovery efforts with speed and efficiency for each “embassy”. Its Ambassadors; spiritual and marketplace leaders worked in different capacities; the spiritual leadership moved quickly to provide an efficient platform of infrastructure from which to work providing staff, physical space, communication and distribution channels while marketplace (and then government) moved with speed and agility, providing vital resources of people, time and money through this stabilized infrastructure to create, innovate, and restore order as quickly as possible.
If you are a business person and feel that a church or para church ministry leader may not be a fit for your Linkedin account, I respectfully submit – this is misguided. Incorporating these leaders into your “sphere” is not just for the purposes of disaster prep. You need them and they need you. People in ministry have accepted the highest call. It’s far easier to become a University professor, a real estate practitioner, an attorney or a business owner, than walking out the vigorous testing journey required for accepting and walking out a ministry career call.
Most spiritual leaders are highly educated, but more importantly – they hear from God and have the ability to move and operate from a spirit driven perspective. This form of operating system is crucial for survival now and will be more so in the days ahead. If you had someone on your board that could accurately provide advice that could avert a really bad decision saving thousands would it not be worth it, even if it did not appear they possessed the technical experience to make those decisions? You can have this.
Job 32:8 “But there is (a vital force) a spirit [ of intelligence ] in man, and the breadth of the Almighty gives men understanding. ”
Proverbs 2:8 “He hides away sound and godly Wisdom and stores it up for the righteous (those who are upright and in right standing with Him): He is a shield to those who walk uprightly and in integrity, That He may guard the paths of justice, yes, He preserves the way of His saints.”
Proverbs 24:5-6 “A wise man is strong and is better than a strong man and a man of knowledge increases and strengthens his power. For by wise counsel you can wage war, and in an abundance of counselors there is victory and safety.”
But this relationship model goes both ways. In 2013-2015, I had the pleasure of meeting Dr. T.L. Lowery multiple times as well as attend his 70 years of Service Celebration at the T.L. Lowery Foundation in Cleveland. A stream of internationally known pastors stepped to the podium to praise and thank him for his many achievements. Dr. Lowery was a prolific healing evangelist in the 50’s and 60’s, using a “canvas cathedral” housing 10,000 people in every city that he reached during a 17 year period. ( Impartation video: https://youtu.be/FsIXkxT578I )
T.L. Lowery, Ph.D, held one earned doctorate, and was awarded two more. He pastored two churches, one in his home town of Cleveland TN, the other in Washington DC. (The latter, the National Church of God, is currently led by his son, Stephen). Dr. Lowery built a Christian school, started a bible college and seminary, built homes for the elderly and established the T.L. Lowery Foundation. He authored 87 books, edited 3 magazines, wrote multitudes of teaching articles and traveled to over 100 nations.
A prolific Apostolic and prophetic teacher, he brought multitudes to Christ through his life’s work which was more than enough but not for him. In addition to pastoring, teaching and writing; T.L. Lowery was a leader in civic organizations, serving faithfully in his community and nationally – an Ambassador to Project One for the United Nations, and in local leadership roles for the Cleveland Chamber of Commerce, the United Way and Rotary. Yes, the great T.L. Lowery was also a Rotarian! He died at the age of 87 on February 21, 2016. Interestingly, this date was one year to the day Rev. Billy Graham died as well as Doug Coe, founder of the National Prayer Breakfast. Three American evangelical leaders died within a 12 month period on the same date.
Marketplace professionals with access to ministry leadership should ask themselves how they can incorporate these leaders into the business realm. Ministry leaders – how can you incorporate yourself into the business arena as well as become proactive in your efforts to build relationships within and outside of your current sphere of influence? How can you establish yourself as a community leader outside of your “embassy”? The strength of the fabric in our community’s is dependent on the number of threads effectively sewn between ministry and marketplace leadership.
Dr. T.L. Lowery and Tracy Gatewood following a fiery preaching session in 2013. On that day, the devil didn’t have a prayer anywhere in Mississippi!
Sacred Ramblings All Rights Reserved
Related Article: Equip the Bride: https://wp.me/p1zoxs-k
This article appeared on Marketplace & Ministry (WordPress)
Facebook: Tracy Gatewood Writer Teacher
Author: Doorways of Grace: My Uncommon Journey to Healing, Wholeness and Meeting Jesus (Amazon 2015 )
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
Join my #StableandFixed Community –
Facebook: Tracy Gatewood Writer Teacher
Author: Doorways of Grace (2015)
Deuteronomy 15:10-11 AMP
You shall give to him freely, without begrudging it; because of this the Lord will bless you in all your work and in all you undertake. For the poor will never cease out of the land; therefore I command you, You shall open wide your hands to your brother, to your needy and to the poor in your land.
Written by Moses in the Deuteronomium, or the Second Law Giving, as told to the Israelites.
Have you ever been truly poor? I have. While in that place of poverty, I understood with great certainty that I should not have been there however no matter how hard I tried to find a job, absolutely nothing would come together. A B.A. degree with honors from an esteemed college did not help, intellect and a good resume was of no assistance, a professional appearance did not move the needle, diligence in networking and seeking came to no avail. It was a desperately lonely season that dragged on. A survey held in 2010 determined that 1 in 7 Americans are poor (14.8% and 46.7 million).
But at the age of 50, after several years of living in extreme financial lack, I decided to stop allowing life to work against me and grabbing it by the collar, forced it to come into alignment with my prayers for financial safety. Being completely broke with no prospects of employment had taken me down a dark and dangerous road of traumatic depression and total desperation.
Honestly, memory has not erased the cruel remarks and behaviors received from “good people” that either thought my situation was fabricated or simply judged harshly with no action or compassion. Slanderous remarks swirled all around like fiery darts that pierced and ripped my soul. That season tried and tested me on every conceivable level – almost to complete breakdown – however the experience of living in the pure hell of daily survival mode sensitized me to the plight of the poor.
We are called – yes even commanded – to help the poor. References to serving the poor are consistent throughout both the Old and New Testaments. Paul writing while in Galatia, Galatians 2:10 AMP They (the Galatians) only (made one stipulation) that we were to remember the poor which very thing I was also eager to do.
Paul knew the Truth regarding poverty – that a person is reckoned righteous and in right standing with God through faith and reliance on Jesus Christ therefore has the spirit of God within them; The One Who possesses the blueprint – the tactical plan – that can spring the release from poverty. The Spirit of God knows the will of God and God’s will is for each to understand they are no longer under the Curse that was broken by His Son’s sacrifice.
Poverty is a Curse
Galatians 13:3 Christ purchased our freedom, redeeming us from the curse of the law (and its condemnation) by (Himself) becoming a curse for us, for it is written, Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree (is crucified): [Deut. 21:23 ]
The book of #Proverbs has a number of verses that describe what to do – and not do – pertaining to the poor:
Proverbs 12:13 Whoever stops his ears at the cry of the poor will cry out himself and not be heard.
Proverbs 17:5 Whoever mocks the poor reproaches his Maker, and he who is glad at calamity shall not be held innocent or go unpunished. (Reproach defined means to criticize, disapprove, rebuke )
Proverbs 29:27 He who gives to the poor will not want but he who hides his eyes from their want will have many a curse.
So why are we not more open to giving to the poor, while not giving under compulsion or with reluctance? I believe it is fear that our finances will not hold but God’s word states something very different:
II Corinthians 9:8-9 And God is able to make all grace (every favor and earthly blessing) come to you in abundance, so that you may always and under all circumstances and whatever the need be self-sufficient [ possessing enough to require no aid or support and furnished in abundance for every good work and charitable donation. ] As it is written, He (the benevolent person) scatters abroad; He gives to the poor; His deeds of justice and goodness and kindness and benevolence will go on and endure forever!
We are exhorted to remember God’s work when He provides increase so as to establish His covenant upon the earth which includes helping those in need.
Newsflash: GOD WORKS THROUGH PEOPLE
Deuteronomy 8:18 But you shall earnestly remember the Lord your God, for it is He Who gives the power to get wealth, that He may establish His covenant which He swore to your fathers as it is this day.
I ask that as God provides wealth, that you remember that it solely comes from Him to establish His Covenant upon the earth. This Covenant is what He gave to you through Abraham who is the channel of blessing and then to Abraham’s son Isaac and then onto Jacob and so on. Genesis 12:2-3 And I will bless those who bless you (who confer prosperity or happiness upon you) and curse him who curses or uses insolent language toward you; in you will all the families and kindred of the earth be blessed (and by you they will bless themselves).
Jesus Christ has formed a New Covenant with God through His sacrifice. This Covenant flows from the Abrahamic covenant but is superior in that it is forged by the efficacious flow of the Supreme Blood and perfect body of Christ and is also superior as it empowers the Holy Spirit (the spirit of God) to live within to provide all things necessary to walk out your life of faith. // G I V E //
#Poverty #Giving #Faith #Favor #Christ #Christianity #Generous #Generousity #Righteousness #AidingthePoor #HelpingtheNeedy #Proverbs #Philanthropy
Tracy L Gatewood
All Rights Reserved 2018
Facebook: Tracy Gatewood Writer Teacher
Amazon Author: Doorways of Grace: My Uncommon Journey to Healing, Wholeness and Meeting Jesus
SoundCloud: Tracy L Gatewood
Cover: Doorways of Grace; Photo Cred. Allison P. Adams
This is a prayer series for the opening of Doorways of Grace for my readers in 2018; praying into specific topics in this the Year of the Open Door, Hebrew Year 5778. You can follow this prayer series and my blog at http://www.sacredramblings.com
I Pray For You This Year –
that a Doorway of Grace will open in 2018, which brings peace in your career. You will find the appropriate place in your current organization or for a door to swing toward a better opportunity. You will transition to a place of abundant provision that embraces your unique Holy Spirit deposited skills, gifts and talents. I pray for a special welcoming place where you will be surrounded with like – minded people with whom you compliment.
That the beauty and delightfulness and favor of the Lord will confirm and establish the work of your hands. That you will prosper in the land and gain promotion and influence within your organization and throughout your community. That the skill and excellence in your craft will bring you before leaders, kings, authorities in high places.
When you pray prayers of protection for Israel and Jerusalem and have understanding of the desire of God for its peace and prosperity (Psalm 122), He, too, will prosper you. The Blessing of God on your life will be evident as you walk in happiness, prosperity and admired by many.
That you learn to see Jesus Christ high above every circumstance, in the mountains and in the valleys, and that you train your mind to instinctively default to Him in faith and with expectancy, until He activates His covenant of supply and protection. That you will earnestly remember the Lord your God daily as He provides, as He is the One that gives the power to get wealth so that His covenant may be established by and through you upon the Earth.
Through forces of Uncommon Favor, I pray for God to swing wide a door that gently delivers you with joyful clapping and singing into the field of your expertise, and into His hearts desire for you. Through prayer and intimacy with Him for you to have no fear and accept the signs of seasons ending and welcome new possibilities consistent with His design for your life. AMEN (So be it)
Psalm 90:17 AMP And let the beauty and delightfulness and favor of the Lord our God be upon us; confirm and establish the work of our hands – yes the work of our hands, confirm and establish it.
Tracy L Gatewood
2018 All Rights Reserved Doorways of Grace
Join My #StableandFixed and Psalm 91:1 AMP Community
Author: Doorways of Grace: My Uncommon Journey to Healing, Wholeness and Meeting Jesus Available on Amazon, at Parsons Porch books and Page & Palette – Best Alabama Indie bookstore, Fairhope, AL
SoundCloud: Tracy L Gatewood
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 of numbers 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.
“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
The study and understanding of the soul; the mind, will and emotions needs a fresh look. How we calibrate our souls to the rhythm of the Spirit and away from the insanity of the world determines the trajectory of the success of life. How do we get and stay happy? This is a deep dive into the issue of soul management – an expedition into how to intentionally acquire and maintain a still and quiet soul.
The following is an excerpt from a booklet by George Muller, who directed until his death in 1898, the Ashley Down orphanage, Bristol England.
“It has pleased the Lord to teach me a truth, the benefit of which I have not lost, for more than fourteen years. The point is this: I saw more clearly than ever that the first great and primary business to which I ought to attend every day was, to have my soul happy in the Lord. The first thing to be concerned about was not how much I might serve the Lord, or how I might glorify the Lord; but how I might get my soul into a happy state, and how my inner man might be nourished. For I might seek to set the truth before the unconverted, I might seek to benefit believers, I might seek to relieve the distressed, I might in other ways seek to behave myself as it becomes a child of God in this world; and yet, not being happy in the Lord, and not being nourished and strengthened in my inner man day by day, all this might not be attended to in a right spirit.
Before this time my practice had been, at least for ten years previously, as a habitual thing, to give myself to prayer, after having dressed myself in the morning. Now, I saw that the important thing I had to do was to give myself to the reading of the Word of God, and to meditation on it, that thus my heart might be comforted, encouraged, warned, reproved, instructed, and that thus, by means of the Word of God, while meditating on it, my heart might be brought into experiential communion with the Lord.” ……….
– George Muller 1805-1898, Soul Nourishment First
George Muller, a man that depended totally on donations to feed and educate thousands of children, positioned himself daily by first being strengthened by the Word of God, so that he might get his soul into a “happy state”. He then relied on meditation to bring his heart into communion with God – he did these two things before engaging in prayer. This was eye opening and confirming at the same time. There are certainly mornings where my mind will not quiet into a state of rest, distracting me from focusing on prayer and hearing from the Lord. Muller’s order of 1) Reading the Word 2) Meditation on the Word 3) Prayer – steadied his soul first before launching out into the spirit depths of his morning prayer.
The Ashley Downs Orphanage in Bristol England served over 10,000 orphans in Muller’s lifetime while also establishing 117 schools, mostly educating orphans. George Muller opened orphanages to prove to the world that God not only hears prayer but answers prayer.The Autobiography of George Muller, Amazon.
Settling the mind, and emotions into a state of rest must become an intentional act
The Lord Jesus bequeathed to all that believe in Him the Gift of Peace – John 14:27
Peace I leave with you, My [own] Peace I now give and bequeath to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid, [Stop allowing yourselves to be agitated and disturbed; and do not permit yourselves to be fearful and intimidated and cowardly and unsettled.]
Ephesians 6 also makes reference to peace: vs15And having shod your feet in preparation (to face the enemy with the firm-footed stability, the promptness, and readiness produced by the good news) of the Gospel of Peace.
This verse implies an intention on the part of the Believer, that they should be #StableandFixed and in total awareness of the Gospel. The Amplified frames the Gospel as the “Gospel of Peace.”
Yet there is even one more mechanism for the acquisition of peace. This very Peace that is guaranteed through the Blood of Jesus still available and direct deposited into the soul, Special Delivery, through the ministry of the Holy Spirit. This is a peace that erupts from the inside out, pressing away the ‘screaming critters’ of fear, condemnation, hopelessness, rejection, shame and effects of traumatic incidences. It is only His ministry that quiets the soul, and can apprehend and supernaturally route-out thoughts, ideas and suggestions that arrive like nuclear warheads into the mind, derailing the will and emotions creating distraction and at times, destruction.
Holy Spirit is given to us as our internal healer and power supply while living on earth yet He is the most underutilized and least understood of the Godhead.
In managing our own souls, our very first duty is the recognition and identification of strong negative emotions. These “hinges” have the ability to swing wide a portal into the soul from the enemy. The following hinges are what release unwanted and involuntary – Thoughts, Ideas and Suggestions.
1) Protracted Fear
4) Anger/ Rage / Hatred
7) Envy / Jealousy
Thought, idea and suggestion warheads are preceded by allowing one of these 8 hinges to swing. We have a responsibility to keep our emotions in check but as mere mortals – all of us swing a hinge from time to time. Our first duty is to identify the hinge for what it is and then allow the Holy Spirit to Clorox the soul from the offending spirit(s). We can verbally and spiritually place the Helmet of Salvation (ref: Ephesians 6) on our heads through the Holy Spirit which will deflect emotional darts – the word ‘salvation‘ (Greek) is all encompassing and means deliverance, wholeness, restoration, preservation , safety.
How does this work ?
Isaiah 53:5 “But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our guilt and iniquities; the chastisement (needful to obtain peace) and well-being for us was upon Him, and with the stripes [that wounded] Him we are healed and made whole. ”
The word ‘Chastise’ in the Hebrew can mean to scourge (mastigoo) and punish (physically). The following passage is spoken by Pilate –
Luke 23:14-16 AMP And said to them, You brought this Man before me as One Who was perverting and misleading and turning away and corrupting the people; and behold, after examining Him before you, I have not found any offense (crime or guilt) in this Man in regard to your accusations against Him; 15 No, nor indeed did Herod, for he sent Him back to me; behold, He has done nothing deserving of death. 16 I will therefore chastise Him and deliver Him amended (reformed, taught His lesson) and release Him. 17 For it was necessary for him to release to them one prisoner at the Feast. 18 But they all raised a deep cry saying, Away with this Man! Release to us Barabbas! 19 He was a man who had been thrown into prison for raising a riot in the city, and for murder. 20 Once more Pilate called to them, wishing to release Jesus; 21 But they keep shouting out, Crucify Him, crucify Him! 22 A third time he said to them, Why? What wrong has he done? I have found (no offense or crime or guilt) in Him nothing deserving of death; I will therefore chastise Him (in order to teach Him better) and release Him.
In this case, clearly the meaning of Chastise was violent, not merely a verbal chiding like warning a child, but a punishment that drew blood – and in this case ALOT of blood. Jesus was so violently beaten, He was unrecognizable.
The Blood and the Spirit are One and Inseparable. There are two primary places in scripture that reference that the blood of Jesus flowed from His head; the Garden of Gethsemane and when He wore that crown of thorns on the day of His crucifixion. The blood that He shed from His head purchased for us His peace for our minds. His blood releases the Spirit. The Blood is what allows the key of access to the soul and the Spirit is Who can turn the key to control the soul.
When we 1) acknowledge and affirm the sacrifice of Jesus 2) enlist the partnership of the Holy Spirit, inviting Him to apprehend every spirit that is not from the spirit of God from our mind 3) Focus on Jesus, standing in victory, in His completed work for our lives 4) And lastly – because it has worked for me and others so many times however should not exalt itself over the focus on Jesus – personally take authority over these “hinges”, rebuking and binding them in the spirit – WE ARE FREE. We walk liberated and we walk in freedom through the Ministry of the Holy Spirit and because of the finished work of Christ Jesus.
Tracy L Gatewood
Sacred Ramblings – 2017 All Rights Reserved
All scripture from Amplified version.
Please join in on a #StableandFixed community!
Twitter – @TracyLGatewood
Author: Doorways of Grace, My Uncommon Journey to Healing, Wholeness and Meeting Jesus
Facebook: Tracy Gatewood Writer Teacher