“Learning to just say… NOT SO!”

” And it came to pass, that on the eighth day they came to circumcise the child; and they called him Zacharias, after the name of his father. And his mother answered and said, NOT SO; BUT HIS NAME SHALL BE CALLED JOHN.” LUKE 1:59,60

Now the deal with this is that at that time sons were usually named by the father and after the father, but his name had come not from man but from God and knowing this, Elisabeth quickly spoke in the babies defense with NOT SO.

How often do we accept the names and titles wrongfully given to us and our children, not once arguing our own NOT SO! ?

I have written in the past about names and titles and the damage they can do but this was on my heart so strong concerning what does it do to our children, our families, and even us when do not loudly proclaim NOT SO at the wounding words and accusations of others? And what role will it play in ultimately fulfilling our destinies?

What if Zacharias and Elisabeth had disobeyed the voice of the angel of the Lord? What if they had chosen to name this child any name other than the commanded John? Well, we know of a certainty, “John the Baptist” would not have existed, all that was spoken, even in that time, among those who heard him and those who hated him, would never have been uttered and the destined place in the cosmic scheme of all things would have been void and John’s namesake message of GRACE might not have been so quickly proclaimed. 

Of course I know God is sovereign and God uses who He wants, when He wants, but I am just stirring your thoughts to the fact that this was PREDESTINED, PREORDAINED, and that I think many of us are fighting battles and fighting against that predestination by being caught up in names that we have accepted but God NEVER chose to call us or others. 

I can never think of names without thinking of the name of my sister, Ruby, who is my “sister-sister” natural sister and spiritual sister. When her name was in my Mom’s heart, it could have not been more perfect, she is beautiful inside and out, has so much compassion that she cries when others cry and missed her calling as a “Florence Nightingale” (notice the image of a loving nurse popped right up, ah.. the power of a name) due to care and nurture of the sick and wounded. And she truly has been a precious jewel placed in our family and we do thank God for her.

And I think especially of children, when labels are placed on them, especially when they HEAR these labels and all the negativity and self-doubt that those labels immediately cover them in and I do wonder what if, what if those labels change?

What if someone boldly stands and says, NOT SO! I wonder about times when people make accusations and spread gossip about others, especially, IN CHURCHES, often with the “But don’t mention it….” attached to it, ( I am meaning when people tell you the most awful things a person has done or supposedly still doing, and are attacking their character and accusing them to you, while wanting to stay anonymous, behind the others back with them not even aware they are being slandered) we are never to judge someone or listen to “charges” against them without first consulting that person to hear their side of the story, but often we choose to see the worst in others and become, judge, jury, and executioner without ever affording that person a “trail”.

And “as we judge, so shall we be judged” so we can be assured that somewhere along the way, someone will backbite, trash talk, and harm our reputation without us having the benefit of speaking on our behalf in the matter.

And in hindsight, which we all know it the greatest of all sight, I look with terrible, terrible regret at times when I should have stood on behalf of others and myself and screamed NOT SO!

Many “old timers warned of the ability to kill with words, to murder another’s reputation and in doing so we are in effect breaking the sixth  commandment, “Thou shalt not kill”. Because we are killing them with the power of that untamable beast and yet we don’t want it mentioned….of course they SAY they do not want to “stir up” trouble, but trouble is exactly want they want stirred.

This could never be discussed without a trip to the Old Testament and going down that tortuously, long hard road that Joseph trod. From the verse, in which his Mother, gives him, HIS name:

GENESIS 30:24: “And she called his name, Joseph; and said the Lord shall add to me another son.” To the naming of HIS sons;

GENESIS 41:51,52: ” And Joseph called the name of the firstborn MANASSEH  (fortified), for God, said he, hath made me FORGET ALL MY TOIL, and ALL my father’s house.

And the name of the second called he EPHRAIM(fruitful),; for God hath CAUSE ME TO BE FRUITFUL IN THE LAND OF MY AFFLICTION.”

And we can travel that road reading his story until words would be fulfilled about his very bones over four hundred years later:

EXODUS 13:19: “And Moses took the bones of Joseph with him: for he (Joseph) had straightly sworn (placed under a solemn oath) the children of Israel, saying, GOD WILL SURELY VISIT YOU; and ye shall carry up my bones away hence with you.”

So Joseph’s namesake “add to” surely was fulfilled, but what about all the names and titles he had to have faith to ignore on that road? Hated by his brothers because of their jealously, he endured, that time equivalent to “brat”, “pet”, and “Daddy’s boy”, and suffered by their hands, now we add  “rejected”, “abused” “hated to death”, Finally “slave” falsely accused and imprisoned, he would have been labeled “rapist” and after those he helped remembered him no more, and as two years went by, he could have easily been labeled “forgotten and forsaken” but he NEVER allowed these labels to adhere to him and he held onto FAITH, that these names, these “titles”, these labels were NOT SO!

Can you imagine the pain, not only of the hurt and anguish he felt at the realization that they did indeed HATE him, but to be ripped away from all he had ever known and loved? But as God brought him out and brought him up, he chose to name his children,  “fortified” strengthen and protected, causing him to FORGET ALL his father’s house, all he suffered and unfortunately the pain of the loss of all he loved.

And “fruitful”, because he said GOD HAD MADE HIM FRUITFUL IN THE LAND OF HIS AFFLICTION. Many, many times he could have just laid it down, he could have lost hope and gave into to voices calling lies over him, and walked out on his destiny, but he chose to BELEIVE in his heart that these heartaches and struggles were only for a little while and when the enemies tried to convince him otherwise, he would remember in his heart what his father had taught, he would rest in his God and know all the lies and false labels had no power over him.

So I want to ask you today, what labels have been applied to you? What labels have been falsely attached to your family, your children? What words, names, and titles do you need to ask the Lord to tear down and break the yoke of those strangling, binding words today, because they HAVE POWER, but GOD HAS MORE!

But God gives us freewill and we must CHOOSE what voice we will hear and what we are willing to accept and we must have courage through the word of God to CHOOSE to hear what HE says about us.

As the Bible states, “Let God be true, and every man a liar”  DO NOT allow others to label you and for the love of God, never let the label children or the elderly while they are in “earshot”, what we hear, we tend to believe and if WE BELEIVE OTHERS THINK US BAD,SICK, OR MENTALLY UNSTABLE , okay, guess what? BAD, SICK, and MENTALLY UNSTABLE WE SHALL BE!

But if YOU choose to say to that person (or yourself) NOT SO! And offer instead to that person a word of hope, healing, or encouragement, and peace, that can change their mindset and MAYBE change the final outcome of that life. Find scripture and use them.

Afraid? “He hath not given us a SPIRIT of fear, but of a SOUND MIND”

Sick? “HE IS risen with healing in his wings”

Tired? COME UNTO ME…..I WILL GIVE THEE REST.”

Every single problem we can have, THERE IS  a word for that problem, use a reference Bible, go online and search scriptures for…… and use them, when everything and everyone around you says you are defeated…. NOT SO! “We ARE MORE THAN CONQUERS THROUGH HIM THAT LOVED US.”

Think about it today, don’t look back years from now when damage is done ( I do hold to the belief that THERE IS NO DAMAGE THAT GOD CAN NOT UNDO, but if it can be avoided, it will save much heartache) and wish you had said NOT SO! to thoughts, labels, titles, and the voices of others, regardless of WHOSE MOUTHS those wrong voices are coming out of! God and GOD ALONE holds your past, present, and future and HE IS the author and finisher of your faith.

He started you, he wrote your story and HE IS more than able to take a tragic beginning and compose into it the world’s most triumphant work! What HE starts in all of us, HE WILL finish. So again, please, please please, (see I really, really pleaded with you) DO NOT ACCEPT ANYONES thoughts, labels, and TRASH, just say, satan (they are his agents) THAT”S JUST NOT SO!

Φλογιζω Σαλπιζω NBJ 2016

“DEATH KNELL IN THE DISTANCE”

“And unto the angel (messenger) of the church in Sardis write: THESE things saith he that hath the seven spirits of God, and the seven stars; I know thy works, that thou hast a name that thou livest, AND ARE DEAD ( but you are dead). BE WATCHFUL, AND STRENGHTEN THE THINGS WHICH REMAIN, THAT ARE READY TO DIE: for I HAVE NOT found thy works perfect (complete) before God. REMEMBER therefore how thou hast received and heard, and REPENT, IF THOU SHALL NOT WATCH, I WILL COME UPON THEE AS A THIEF, AND THOU SHALT NOT KNOW WHAT HOUR I WILL COME UPON THEE. Thou hast a few names (few people) even in Sardis which hath not defiled (stained) their garments; AND THEY SHALL WALK WITH ME IN WHITE: for they are worthy.”

Revelation 3:1-4

What could we possibly answer Him to this? We being a denominational belief system, but going by HIS WORDS this is not even a belief system. It is spiritual church HE CHOSE US as members in. I will not get into denominations for that reason. Jesus addressed this once by saying that He had “Other sheep not of this fold” that He must bring also.

WE make it about denominations and there will be none in heaven (during our short trip there while He accomplishes the win of the Battle of Armageddon. There will be no denominations in New Jerusalem, which will be on this earth, and all believers will be joined there with Him. “In that day His Name shall be one”. But it does matter here.

In Revelation, He sends out encouragements and warnings to the seven churches. Which I believe in the spirit realm can be assigned to denominations. Sardis, interestingly enough translates in Hebrew to “Prince of Joy”. This church has a NAME that it is ALIVE, lively stones, full of joy at the presence of the Lord.  

They would be of the Holiness/ Pentecostal/ Apostolic persuasion. Hard to separate this group because they are so similar. The Holiness believe in being filled with the Holy Ghost and the many manifestations of His presence BUT they have ran into problems with their “holy” becoming a little holier than thou, strict rules on females and stifling dress codes, overbearing dominate male attitudes held by SOME (NOT ALL) have made it something to run from rather than being embraced. Pentecostal, pretty much the same type of worship but with more leniency on women, it has been marred with the running amok of “prophecy” and a belief that we can just speak things, (well, we can speak all we want but a true word from God CANNOT be taught by man and can not come at will) and if something does not come to pass, well that is that and there goes someone’s faith. Apostolic, who hold to the knowledge that Jesus Christ Is God and worship with tongues and hold fast to the Gift of The Holy Ghost but again it also has been tainted by male dominance and extremely strict rules of conduct.  None of these problems should be in ANY of these groups, they should be filled with the joy and presence of the Holy Ghost and walking on sunshine because of having received the greatest of all gifts! And everyone else THINKS these things were just for the Disciples or are private and not to be publicly displayed.

So if you “belong” to one of these groups please listen up. Sardis is often used as a name for a baby boy, you know baby, fresh, brand new start but the fruit of its “parents” before. So this is in Revelation, the end of all ends, we are in the last days so these messages ARE for the last day churches. If any of us saw a baby laying on the ground gasping for breath we would in a heartbeat grab that child and scream for help with everything within us and not stop screaming until help came and that baby was resuscitated, bright eyed and cooing again. But for sake of THE WORLD we ARE willing to let those things God has called us into be thrown to the ground and lie there, gasping for breath on the very verge of death!

Notice that Jesus said “The things which REMAIN” showing us that some things have already died and are now lost. The garments are the robes of righteousness, holiness that have became stained due to giving ourselves to things of this world and FORGETTING WHAT WE HAVE RECEIVED OF HIM AND HOW WE HEARD, meaning at the moment of salvation, the moment that we asked God into our hearts, the moment we were filled with the Holy Ghost (not the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, but the Holy Ghost) that is the state that He wants us kept in.

Often as we journey as Christians, it is so easy to go with the flow and be swayed by doctrine other than what He called us into. I am not saying these are wrong but if he called you to be a Pentecostal and you decide you are Baptist or Non Denominational, YOU ARE NOT in your proper station and maybe it is more convenient for you but God will not excuse your absence from the post he has chosen. As he tells us to REPENT, realize what we are doing and STOP doing it and get ourselves back where we are predestined and preordained to be. And if we fail to do so, He will, when we least expect Him, visit us, and the death knell will no longer be in the distance, it will be heard in our very ears.

With the passing generation IT is dying and no one notices, no one cares, no one asks what is wrong with us? Why are we not nurturing these precious gifts of God? Why are we not seeking those old paths of praise and worship? Why are we no longer preaching about Holy Ghost and Fire Baptism?  Why are Heaven and Hell rarely mentioned? Why aren’t we telling the lost that there is so much more, that they can pass from death to life NOW on this earth. That there is  so much more than what they see.

When are WE going to be as they were in the upper room? And put down completely carnal stereotypes of each other and if I hear “men pray for men, women pray for women” one more time I will scream!  If a woman ASKS for ladies only to pray for her, or if a guy specifically ASKS for guys only to pray for him, I can see that, they have personal reasons but when it is a mandate, then obviously someone has a problem with carnality in their thinking that they need to address with the Lord, because these things SHOULD NEVER EVEN BE THOUGHT IN A CHURCH. It IS NOT OUR PRAYERS THAT ARE DOING ANYTHING IT IS THE POWER OF GOD!

The person whom He chooses to come through is up to Him, and that can be ANYONE and sometimes the least person we would expect is the very one God will use to send His anointing through and allow them to pray a prayer of faith over us and send our breakthrough or healing. And He is not going to change His mind because we are uncomfortable with each others gender.

That is another big issue we WANT, We think. We don’t ponder what God wants, and we will receive nothing outside His will and we will lose much with that stubbornness. We are all ONE in the spirit, we are NOT male nor are we female. I guess that would be a fair way to answer a difficult person, maybe it is not that we are female, it is maybe just that one day they will be THE SAME thing WE ARE! And in the spirit world that day has already come! I have even heard of discouraging against seeking your particular gift because “anyone can have any gift”, well that could be, but we are told to neglect not the gift that IS IN US and different callings are given to different ones.

He does what He wants, BUT the church is going to have to start seeking and nurturing these gifts and not be so centered on WHO has what because again it is up to God, not us and He looks upon the heart. We are to be in one mind and one accord praying with one purpose of mind and if we can not do this we MUST overcome these MAN MADE OBSTACLES until we can. We are going to have to decide if we want Him in all His fullness or do we want to “fit” in with the rest of the world. And we “must decrease (our self, our human nature) and HE MUST INCREASE” Be who you are in Christ and seek him and all He has called you to be.

Φλογιζω NBJ 2016

COUNTING WRONG

My favorite all time quote is from Ronald Reagan in response to Muammar Qaddafi’s far out plans of taking on America, “He counted on America to be passive and he counted wrong”. This was inadvertently brought back to mind last night.
It is par for the course over the last few weeks and it seemed perfect for today’s topic.
The enemy, and sometimes other people seem to believe they can put you in, what is their perception of your place, and you will passively stay there but just as Libya soon learned the meaning of those infamous words, there are times that we have to stand up for ourselves or be trampled into the ground.
To be honest my first day out in this new adventure I almost gave up. I had the awesome privilege of receiving enough, how shall we say, unwanted  proposals (and not for marriage) through Face book ( I really don’t know what part of “Hello, Married Minister that someone didn’t get, but they do get it they just choose not to believe it )these were the waters I had tried to avoid having to tread because I knew I’d have to fight some battles that I would preferred to sit out.
Bad on my part, that is why Satan throws stuff like this at us, he knows what buttons to push to shut us up, back us off, and set us down.
I truly thought once about deleting it all and trying another route, but you know what, God did not create me to be a coward, sure, as the old saying goes they can kill you but they can’t eat you! Well, I actually guess they could but hopefully you would at least taste bad!!
God sent me wonderful encouragement through others with his word and uplifting thoughts they shared that were right on time.
Once God’s spirit started rising up in me and I grew a better backbone, I decided that I will not let anyone take from me what God gave. I can take the remarks about the pants, I can deal with the old school belief that if you wear make-up you’re a quote unquote Jezebel, I can deal with the boys only club of ministry society. What I can’t deal with is anyone touching my anointing and that is where the fight will get bloody.
If you are battling oppression in any form today, I want to encourage with this list of people who stood up to not just THE ENEMY but to all those who wished to interfere with the preordained work of God.
The Pharaoh counted on taking Abraham’s wife for his harem, but when God himself appeared to this pagan in a dream letting him know assuredly that he was a good as dead because she belonged to another. As he counted up the gifts he gave trying to gain favor as he sent them on their way, he realized when he had accessed just how easily he thought she could be obtained, he found out with the loss of his riches that he had counted wrong.
Joseph’s brothers counted on destroying him, but upon discovering his new Identity as second in power over all of Egypt they learned they had counted wrong.
Pharaoh counted on killing off the Hebrew sons, but with God’s sovereign plan the one baby he missed, that would grow up in his own house would bring about Egypt’s downfall. When he counted babies, he counted wrong.
Pharaoh counted on continuing to enslave the Hebrews after being commanded  from God to free them, finally having been hit with nine plagues, he conceded that he may have counted wrong.
Pharaoh counted on the Red Sea to allow his armies passage, but he and his host all drown there, and for his last time he counted wrong.
Korah counted on overthrowing Moses. Then the ground opened up and swallowed all that pertained to him.  Guess he too counted wrong.
Balak counted on hiring Balaam to curse Israel. Only to discover his plan had been intercepted by a Holy God and now only blessing could be spoken, yep, counted wrong.
Balaam counting on getting by disobeying God, and beating a donkey, once his eyes had been opened to the angel who informed him that he would have gladly killed him, not even aware how close he came to death and he surely regretted that he counted wrong!
Depraved men counted on forcibly taking and sexually assaulting Lot’s angelic house guests, only to blinded through the door and the entire place destroyed from the face of the earth, they had counted wrong.
Philistines counted on enjoying their “Let’s torture Samson” party,
as party sayings go, he really brought the house down, counting on torturing God ‘s anointed for the fun of it, thousands at that party had counted wrong.
Sisera, the enemy of Israel counted on a nice warm resting place when Jael took him in, had he lived through her nailing his head to the floor, well he would have known when he counted her as a friend, he counted wrong.
Goliath laughed hysterically at David’s small size counting on taking this boy down. God’s guided stone sending this beast to the ground and when his head came off, all of his army knew when they counted on destroying Israel that they counted wrong.
Absalom who counted on overthrowing his father, soon found himself suspended from a tree branch, caught by his beautiful hair. I’m sure before being ran through by the sword, he knew he counted wrong.
Nebuchadnezzar counted on torching the three Hebrew boys, once he saw not only were they fireproof but also not alone, to his horror he realized he counted wrong.
Haman counted on hanging Mordecai and killing all the Jews, after a chat between the King and Esther lead him to his gallows, those who had encouraged him in his plan knew they all had counted wrong.
Belshazzar counted on using vessels of the Lord as stem ware  for his pagan party, his death warrant was soon written upon his wall,
that’s what happens when you count wrong and attempt to defile a vessel, any vessel that is consecrated unto God.
Darius’ overseers counted on ridding themselves of Daniel by turning him lion food, but once morning came and Daniel was still very much alive, they themselves were thrown in the den, these are men who counted wrong, once again.
Satan and the armies of hell counted on taking all power once they had Jesus dead, but to their surprise he tore down their stronghold taking the keys to their kingdom, all the sting of death, overcoming the grave by resurrecting from his death.They counted on defeating him and there will never again be doubt of just how they counted and they counted wrong.
We could go on for days, but I hope this encourages someone.
We do get discouraged, but when that happens give it to the Lord, let him raise up his spirit in you.
Think of it as spiritual wrestling, you may down but never let them make it to the three count.
You may be weak and they may think you’ve been counted out but with God as your Captain you can let them know really fast, if they really believe your out of the match and down for the count then obviously they have very badly counted wrong.
Φλογιζω/ All rights reserved. Reverend Nina BrownJohnson/ baresoulphlogizo 2015