Sunday, 27 May 2012

Struggling to get that time alone.....??!!!!

Matt 11:28  "Come to me,  all who you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For my yoke is easy and my burden is light." 

This morning as I was having my quiet time my husband kept encroaching on my space with the Lord and I kept getting distracted with things that needed to be done and I felt like screaming for my own space just to be with the Lord.   Then the Lord reminded me very quickly that I need to continue to feed from him with everything going on around me.  He reminded me of the different seasons in life and the different stresses at different times, as a mother with children running around your feet, as a worker and the demands of full time work, whatever season you are in, that we still need to find that time to be alone with the Lord where it is just him and you in communion with each other, loving and being loved, where everything is laid bare before him, where all the stresses of life are handed over to him for him to come in and lead the way and carry the load.  Where we find rest for our souls.  This is always the place where I need to come to, where the burdens on my heart are replaced with his peace and rest and from that position so much is able to happen and does so with much more ease.

Last night in church there was a song sang that said "what we pay attention to that is what takes hold of you"  It is so true.  Over many years now for me I have often been up at 5 - 5:30am just so that I have a decent time just alone with the Lord before the busyness of the day (not 5 mins, for me it is rather a couple of hours at least)  and then Kate's school schedule changed and she was in my space from 6am and so that time alone with the Lord has had to change too.  Now it sometimes is not till everyone has gone to bed late at night or even sometimes the Lord will get me up at 3 in the morning just to spend time with me.  Or it will be through the day wherever I can put that time aside.  It is a discipline in my life that I try to make and find the space for, because without my time with the Lord I know my world just collapses around me, stresses come in and the whole house suffers if I find I haven't had my time with the Lord.

I share this with you not to boast or put pressure on you to do the same.   As I said above what we pay attention to is what takes a hold of you.   I was choosing this discipline to spend time with the Lord and in his word and initially I certainly didn't spend the amount of time I do with him now, it has grown over time where now a couple of hours is nothing and I long for more with him.   I know for myself if I don't spend this time with him, then the other things in my life become a bigger focus than God and quickly my faith for certain things to happen just isn't there, as I have made the Lord smaller than the situation that needs a breakthrough, of which he is more than able to bring if I allow him to.

I have noticed too over the years how my time with him has changed.  There is no formula how you spend time with the Lord and like the seasons above I am learning there are seasons in what happens with my time with the Lord.  Whether its reading the word and praying, whether its just listening to music soaking allowing him to speak to me, whether its processing a dream he has given me, whether its reading huge chunks of his word in one sitting, whether its playing the guitar, speaking in tongues, or whatever form it may take, my communion/fellowship with the Lord is varied as my relationship has many faucets with him.  It may even be listening to teaching while baking a cake.  As long as I find time to 'hear' from the Lord and to 'hand' things over to him it doesn't matter to me what shape that may take, sometimes it may even be watching a movie that will speak to me.  I have chosen to make him my focus and in the busyness of life I continue to find the time to make Him my focus because without him I am nothing, I can do nothing, but with Him I can do everything through Him who gives me strength!

Lord help us to find that time 'alone' with you in the busyness of life where you feed us your heavenly mana for the day, where our daily bread, our provision comes from you.  Thank you Jesus that you are more than able to take care of every need we have, every situation that we are facing, that you give us strength where we have no strength and Lord I ask that for each person today that you would come into their world and in their situations and bring your rest and peace to whatever they may be facing.  Thank you Lord!

Wednesday, 23 May 2012

Are you having an affair?

While we were away in Whangarei I had a dream which in this dream I saw several young married couples newly married, but I saw one of the husbands of these woman on the phone with a woman and too busily preoccupied with her to have time for his wife.  In this same dream I saw I was married to a man, but because I realised that he didn't love me, I quickly got our marriage annulled because I was still in a position to do so.

In reflecting on this dream and the words that popped into my mind during the dream it was actually talking about 'spiritual adultery'.  When we get married we put ourselves in covenant relationship with that person, to love, honour, cherish etc that other person for life.  That that person is the most special person and you are committing to keep that relationship special and important.  For me in this dream I saw the man on the phone with a woman and really felt that this was talking about the internet and actually phones now that I think about and look around me as people can't put down their phones, even when having a conversation with them, but also ministry as the man talking with the woman on the phone was trying to counsel her.  But whatever it is, even if it may be helping someone else, if that is taking our attention away from the covenant relationship we have made with our spouse, it is not good.    When we commit our lives to the Lord we have chosen to be in covenant relationship with him,  but for many of us we find our time taken over with ministry, with internet, with other things that distract us from our relationship with the Lord that eventually we find that relationship with the Lord is no longer as important and hold the place it once did and that is what is called 'spiritual adultery'.

Another thing I have learnt along the way in the area of spiritual adultery is that if I share things with other people where I am at emotionally and spiritually and haven't shared it first with Jim, then I am giving those people things that my husband first should have.  Your spouse is the first person (outside of the Lord) who should know where you are at, how you are feeling, what you are struggling with, but often we find ourselves talking to our friend and sharing our heart there, which too is fine, but remember that the first covenant relationship you have is with your spouse or whoever that is in your life, and so like a tithe, they deserve the 'first fruits' of that relationship.  That is a whole area that needs more discussion but now is not the time.

So for me in this dream there was the whole reminder of keeping in priority those covenant relationships and spending time making them happen.  Like when in my dream above sometimes we find ourselves in relationships that are not good for us and so I quickly annulled the relationship I was in, we have a choice and we need sometimes to break relationships or put boundaries in a little more with things or people that take us away from the Lord, from what is the best that the Lord would have for us.  For me when I get up in the morning for my quiet time with the Lord often I will just flick on the email to see what has popped into my box and that is okay, but then I have to self discipline myself away from the computer as I can easily get dragged into there and lose my time with the Lord and miss out on the more that he wants to give me and show me.  I am thankful for this reminder and even this week it had helped me hugely to keep in focus where I am spending my time and with whom or what. :)

Bless you all!

Tuesday, 22 May 2012

May Newsletter - Africa in June

23 May 2012

Dear friends and partners,
Psalm 34:1-3
I will extol the Lord at all times;
His praise will always be on my lips.
My soul will boast in the Lord;
Let the afflicted hear and rejoice.
Glorify the Lord with me;
Let us exalt His name together.

This was in my journal this morning and was so appropriate for where things are at.!
God’s timing is just amazing.  In the last update Jim’s work was coming to an end but the Lord had spoken about Step Up & Step In – the mini conference we had earlier this month, which because of the Lords timing in less work for Jim enabled him to concentrate on preparation for the conference.  The conference was such a blessing and everything the Lord had been teaching us over the years was released in the peace, rest and freedom then reigned over it.  There is a more detailed description of the event on the blogsite ( along with photos, so have a look there if you can because it is such a testimony to the Lord and the way he was moving throughout.  But thank you to all who stood with us in whatever way through this time, your prayers & help were certainly felt and answered!

At the conference the Lord said to me “Run” and it seems we have come into a “running season” at the moment.  From Step Up & Step In we then travelled down to Danniverke as some friends asked if we would come and spend time with them and minister into their situation.  It was a special time but also a bit of a retreat for us away from the busyness of home after what had just taken place.   The Lord opened up other opportunities for us to minister with various people while we were there, but the thing that blew us away on the way down was we picked up a hitchhiker in Taupo who was heading for Danniverke.   He was a Christian who had been praying that the Lord would bring him other Christians who believed in the gospel of grace and so we ended up that first night sleeping on their lounge floor praying and teaching them what the Lord had taught us.  It was such a special time but also a confirmation to us of what God had been speaking that as we go, he will provide for our needs.

From there we came home for a few days and then headed up to Whangarei.  This place has been on our heart for a while as we had met various people and so were waiting for the opportunity to go and the Lord provided that through a conference that was happening in the church we wanted to visit.  So we went and we had the most wonderful time.  We stayed with some people we had met and had some amazing times together in the Lord.  The speaker of the conference was Eric Johnson who is just amazing to meet and listen.  If you have not heard of him, watch out for some of his teaching.  He is the son of Bill Johnson and now is the senior Leader of Bethel Church in Reading.  Anyway his teaching really spoke to us and we were greatly encouraged.  The Lord opened up opportunity for us to pray and impart to others as well and we were greatly blessed when we visited another church on the Sunday morning and once again the Lord opened up opportunity to pray and speak into and encourage the leaders & others there.  We were so thankful for our time there but also to see what is happening in the spirit in the North of Auckland.  God is on the move powerfully and Jim and I would like in the future to head up that way for a month or two and go where the spirit leads.  Major stuff is happening in the Maori and God connected us with a Maori Women pastor while we were there and we know he has something for us both in that relationship, so we look forward to what he will do in the future.  We have a heart & call from the Lord to be a part of & see the reconciliation between the Maori and the Pakeha and so for us it was a very exciting time.

As we got home only two days ago the Lord spoke to us once again about Africa and showed us we needed to step out in faith into this and believe for the finances to come in as we stepped out.  So we stepped out and let people know we were going to Africa on facebook but then we had a friend turn up a couple of hours later with a cheque for $6000 in her hand that the Lord had spoken to her that morning, unaware of what he was saying to us or knowing what we had put on the internet, to give to us to go to Africa!  WOW, it blew our minds for the rest of the day!   Last year when the Lord was speaking about Africa he said through a prophetic word from someone to have our bags packed ready to go so we feel the quickness of this happening and at this stage it is looking like us leaving round the middle of June.  So as you can imagine we are still totally blown away by the testimony of the Lord,  but know his certainty of confirmation to go even not knowing exactly where we are to go, but have had many words of late from others and confirmation of John 3:8 which says “The wind blows wherever it pleases.  You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going.  So it is with everyone born of the Spirit”. But we have a starting point and that is South Africa, Johannesburg so that is where we are starting, staying with Missionaries Rod & Lynley Talbot from New Zealand World Outreach, believing he will open up the steps as we go.  Zimbabwe, Malawi and Mozambique all being possible other places on our heart to visit so if you have contacts in these places then we would love to hear from you.

Through all of this Kate has been amazing and God has opened up a home with someone from Eastside church in town who has been looking for a boarder and Kate has been enjoying it there on the times we have been away of late and is keen to go there for longer as much as they are keen to have her.  She is nearly 17 and so the Lord seems to be opening the way for us to be released more and more where it is fitting with everyone.

So in all of this letter there is much to give thanks to the Lord for and much to pray into with the coming days ahead.  So we would ask that you continue to stand with us in prayer in all areas over the next month or possibly two, as we step out in Africa.

·       For Kate – that she would feel so loved it would blow her socks off!
·       For health in all of us and every practical detail that needs to come together
·       For continued financial provision for every part of the trip and before hand
·       For the leading of the spirit that would lead us to pastors and leaders, to the people God wants us to minister to, to those in authority
·       For signs, wonders, healings and miracles wherever we go that would lead to salvation and relationship with the Lord
·       For the peace that passes all understanding that would guard our hearts and mind in Him

If you would like to sow financially into this trip to Africa and what the Lord is going to do there then please do this by internet banking to GRM Charitable Trust a/c 060369 0123246-00 making sure you put your reference details so we can send you a receipt at the end of the financial year as this is a charitable trust for donation purposes.  Or you can send it to our home address. 

With all our love and thanks,  Jim, Sarah and Kate :)

Monday, 21 May 2012

The power of the words we speak - what do we actually believe?

This morning I am reminded so powerfully by the Lord of the power of my words and the authority that they carry.  God is so gracious to us but he brought such a breakthrough for me in this this morning and the dreams and visions he has placed on our lives.  This past weekend we have been in Whangarei and something that Eric Johnson spoke about was the blind-spot in our lives.  Like when driving in our car there is a blind-spot that we can't see and others can see it.  We, all of us, have blind spots in our lives and we need to be asking the Lord what those blind spots are so we can walk in the fullness of everything he has for us.  Well I was asking the Lord what my blind-spot was and he was gracious to me and showed me the power of the words that I speak.  I have known in my head the power of the words, but this past week twice it has been confirmed by others and that when we speak we either curse or bless but the reality of that is dropping from my head into my heart.
In Matt 12:36 it says "But I tell you that men will have to give account on the day of judgement for every careless word they have spoken.  For by your words you will acquitted and by your words you will be condemned."  Powerful words.

In what he was showing me I found I needed to repent in not stepping out in things he has spoken over our lives, that we have looked at our circumstances and not seen the provision and hence not stepped out in them, but if he has spoken it, then he will provide for it.  And so needed to be giving thanks for the provision even though we hadn't yet seen it come into reality.  And even in our children we can so often see them where they are right now rather than seeing them where God sees them with the hope and the future that he has for them and speaking that into being and giving thanks for it, even though we have yet to see it in reality.  The Lord says to give thanks in all circumstances and this morning he has showed me yet another level of what that looks like.

There are so many things in life that we see the current situation in rather than what God sees and we speak from that perspective.  I was saying to Jim this morning about what our default is set it, is it set to one of faith and God's perspective or is it negativity, or discouragement, or lack.  I said something to him and straight away he put some obstacle in the way, really interesting because God doesn't put obstacles in the way, he makes the path straight!  He is one of yes and amen but it just showed us once again about the power of our words and actually what we believe.

The Lord took me to Job 36 v7 He does not take his eyes off the righteous, he enthrones them with Kings and exalts them forever.  But if men are bound in chains, held fast by cords of affliction, he tells them what they have done, that they have sinned arrogantly.  He makes them listen to correction and commands them to repent of their evil.  If they obey and serve him they will spend the rest of their days in prosperity and their years in contentment.  But if they do not listen, they will perish by the sword and die without knowledge.
Verse 26  How great is God - beyond our understanding.!  Over the weekend the Lord reminded be about the book of Job and more importantly the picture it brings of the Lord and the power of his hand and all that he created and basically nothing is too difficult for him.  I was reminded of his majesty!

This morning I needed to repent of my thinking and speaking lack into things and situations instead of the yes and amens in God and I already have felt a powerful shift and breakthrough in our lives and now have the faith again to step out into the promises and words of God!

Sunday, 6 May 2012

Step Up & Step In. Overview of the two days. JUST A BLESSED TIME

Wow thankyou Jesus!   For the first semi major event we have ever hosted we were blown away how the Lord brought it together.  The people who put up their hand and helped out were just fantastic!  Each and every one making it what it was.  Honestly the peace of the Lord was all over it.  Each person just took their position whether being asked or not and stepped up into it with such strength and capability that it blew Jim and I away.  THANKYOU TO ALL for releasing what was in your hand - your loaves and fishes!

As for Nicky and the Band, what can we say - you guys too stepped up in such a powerfully anointed way.  It was awesome.  The worship was so led by the spirit and you could see the effort and time you had put in paid off so powerfully with peace and rest flowing from the throne.  If you haven't seen these guys before and need a itinerant worship group then people get a hold of these guys!

As for the rest - while truly the REST & PEACE of the Lord was so there.  Every session once again different as you moved led by the Spirit to what he wanted to minister to.

The first night being one of the Power of God being released.   The fire of God so evident touching people radically. The talk centered around whose house are you building from Haggai and to finding the precious jewels in the field in Matt 13:44 that we sell all we have to buy that field.  Some needed a fresh touch from the Lord to remember the preciousness of those jewels that they had once found.  

The second was so gentle with the Lord dealing with areas of grief and broken relationships followed with communion - it was so special.  Jim spoke about being grafted into the vine and that we have a choice to come in and be a part of the family or sitting outside watching from a distance sharing his example of our new kitten.

The third session more of breaking the chains and setting the captives free to be who they were called to be.  The talk was about the body and how we needed each part of the body to function because if we don't we withhold our gift to the rest of the body.  People began sharing what the Lord was showing them to everyone, one by one words of knowledge came, pictures came, testimony came, just wonderful to see the different parts of body being released to bring together a whole picture.

And the final session talked about humility and what is true humility and man's humility and sharing what you have with others in the market place through testimonies shared.  The understanding of knowing who you are with the authority that you have in Christ yet being able to be a servant.  It doesn't matter what you do or who you are under, you can be a free person full of authority yet serve as Christ did.

All Glory and praise to the Lord as he changed each one of us.  For Jim and myself it too was a step up into what the Lord has been saying leaving behind fear of man and stepping into what God says about us and the anointing he has given us to walk in.  We are growing in it as each of us are, but we press on in faith believing that He can do what He said he will do, realising without Him we can do nothing!  It was a vision come to pass for us this past weekend and then the Lord would say, its even more than you think, ask or imagine (Eph 3:20) so what we are seeing is nothing compared to what is to come.  There is always more in the Lord so never allow yourselves to settle with where you are at because the Lord would encourage to continue to press on in Him in faith and see what He will do.  When we realise we can't do it and step out in that, then He steps in and gets all the glory and praise that is due His name.  When we are obedient to his voice and trust when he says that those who trust in him will never be put to shame, then we begin to come into some of the fullness of joy that the Lord has promised to those who love him.  Continue to press on in Him people.  Bless each one of you!  The Lord has good plans for you, plans to prosper and not to harm, plans with a hope and a future!