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by Josephine Marie Ayers
Changed from the Inside Out
In the process of writing this, I have covered a number of topics; although I felt led of the Lord to share primarily from the book of Esther. She was a great woman of God who came from humble beginnings, but who found herself in the right place at the right time with reference to God’s sovereign plans to save her people.
We have examined tools for effective intercession; the favor and authority that God has given us; what kinds of things God can do through us; and our positioning in life by God that may bring us favor and platform. We also looked at those positions when they feel uncomfortable because they may rest on a legal right (such being elected to office) which places us as God’s woman or man on the job.
We talked about some of the things that may cause our spiritual demise; about our available keys to the Kingdom for breakthrough, healing, and resurrection power. We have previewed tasty delights that God offers us on His menu! We have also been encouraged with knowing that joy does come in the morning, and we have whet our appetites to become game-changers and do great exploits for Him.
I have shared a perspective showing that when we are ‘disturbed’, or our boats get rocked, it isn’t always from the devil, but may be God Himself shaking our comfort levels in order to direct us. God sometimes leads with closed doors. We have learned about God’s purpose to mature us into stately “oaks of righteousness” for His Kingdom Glory.
We are I believe, living in times where we are literally perched on the edge of Glory-His Glory. Especially in these difficult times awaiting His return. However, before that happens I believe we will experience the most Glory this earth has ever experienced to date. Why, because scripture tells us how Jesus demonstrated saving ‘the best wine for last’ (Paraphrased-John 2:10) as He did in his first miracle at the wedding feast of Cana. I believe He is keeping the best “wine” ever for us in these end times! I am also hoping that for you, these meditations have been an exercise in being transformed, changed from the inside out, from Glory to Glory.
Lastly, we discussed the stuck mentality.
It may look like to some that the sobering things going on in our government and world are beyond change, and that we are stuck with what we have, or that we should just pray for an early rapture.
The truth is that we all need to do our part, and I believe it starts with 2 Chronicles 7:14, “… if My people called by My Name, will humble themselves and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, I WILL forgive their sins, and heal their land.” (NKJV)
We are not stuck, but we need to realize that the hope rests with us first (His body on this earth) to do our due diligence in seeking Him, and removing compromise, and rebellion out of our lives. We need self-examination, prayer, and most importantly, we need repentance. It is the way! 1 John 3:8 tells us the Son of God appeared to destroy the devil’s work. He is going to use us to do that. We can no longer look the other way, waiting for someone to do it for us. He will hold us accountable for not doing our part scripturally in the healing of our land. We can no longer say we did not know, and when we stand before Him, He may ask us, why did we not know? It is up to us to find out, and implement what we have learned. That being said, we can be used to change the world, one by one starting with number 1! Hosea 4:5 says, "My people are destroyed from lack of knowledge."
I attended a ministry meeting last night. At the end of the meeting one of the leaders was talking about people we needed to pray for as a team. He went on to remind us specifically that the LORD commands we pray for our leaders.
God gives this command in 1 Timothy 2:1-3, "Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable like in all godliness perseverance. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior." (NKJV)
If you notice the command is given to ALL who are in authority over us. There are no qualifiers as to their merits for our prayer, i.e. whether they are good leaders, bad leaders or ones we like or dislike.
He went on to say that one day we will have to give account to God as to whether we did as He required. There was further discussion about what happens when we do not pray. An example was given with regard to President Kennedy specifically. It was told that there were seven intercessors dedicated to pray for him, and warned him not to go to Dallas. He ignored it, and we all know what happened, he met with an untimely death. Let’s further expand on this train of thought- I wonder what other cataclysmic events could have been avoided if there was more prayer for leaders, good or bad? Don’t the scriptures also say we are not in position to judge others, lest we be judged? I am glad that whoever prayed for me to come into the Kingdom did not chalk me up to be a lost cause!
Could the holocaust have been avoided? How about 911 or Martin Luther King's murder? What about our current administration? It is clear there is much criticism of it and the man/men leading it? Are there prayer efforts going up to match the level of critiques?
I believe that the saving of our nation rests squarely on us, the Body of Christ. The two above mentioned scriptures demonstrate that. I also believe there are intercessors that are praying. However the command to intercede is not just given specifically to those that have the intercessor mantel, but to ALL of us, that call ourselves His.
Can you imagine what would or could happen if we prayed like Daniel did?
As a member of Facebook©, I can remember bringing this up to a Facebook© friend, along with the 2 Chronicles 7:14 verse. I was instantly rebuked that I was suggesting to pray for our president, and that their opinion was that he was evil, and we do not pray for evil men. 1Timothy 2:1-4 says, “I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— 2 for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. 3 This is good, and pleases God our Savior, 4 who wants all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.” Right after that I was un-friended, not before being called a Communist. The person I was talking to was an ordained minister! Oh Lord, please forgive them they know not what they do? (Luke 23:24)
Did not Jesus come for the lost? Even more so for our leaders in government, if they are not Believers, to pray they find Jesus for their sake as well as those they lead?
I must admit I was I was caught up short, and reminded that we will all have to give account for the state of our nation, good or bad. I asked His forgiveness, for my not being as diligent and consistent as I could have in this area of prayer.
We cannot blame the elections, politicians, executive orders, and electoral process for the current chaotic national events. We must I believe, take personal inventory of where we are in this whole process. If we are not being diligent to pray for our leaders (all of them) and if we do not control our tongues, we need to instantly repent, and change turn for our wicked ways! It is not too late. I believe if we do this as a daily practice, WE can be used to save our nation.
I will close with this scripture, "I looked for someone among them who would build up the wall and stand before me in the gap on behalf of the land so I would not have to destroy it, but I found none". (Ezekiel 22:30)
Let us be part of the fix, not part of the problem. This is something to seriously consider.
We know what the hope is and what the end of the story will be in scriptures; I heard it in my spirit on a prayer walk.
The First passage of Scripture is from Isaiah 60- The Glory of Zion.
"Arise, shine, for your light has come,
and the glory of the Lord rises upon you.
See, darkness covers the earth
and thick darkness is over the peoples,
but the Lord rises upon you
and his glory appears over you.
Nations will come to your light,
and kings to the brightness of your dawn.
Lift up your eyes and look about you:
All assemble and come to you;
your sons come from afar,
and your daughters are carried on the hip.
Then you will look and be radiant,
your heart will throb and swell with joy;
the wealth on the seas will be brought to you,
to you the riches of the nations will come.
Herds of camels will cover your land,
young camels of Midian and Ephah.
And all from Sheba will come,
bearing gold and incense
and proclaiming the praise of the Lord.
All Kedar’s flocks will be gathered to you,
the rams of Nebaioth will serve you;
they will be accepted as offerings on my altar,
and I will adorn my glorious temple.
Who are these that fly along like clouds,
like doves to their nests?
Surely the islands look to me;
in the lead are the ships of Tarshish,
bringing your children from afar,
with their silver and gold,
to the honor of the Lord your God,
the Holy One of Israel,
for he has endowed you with splendor.
Foreigners will rebuild your walls,
and their kings will serve you.
Though in anger I struck you,
in favor I will show you compassion.
Your gates will always stand open,
they will never be shut, day or night,
so that people may bring you the wealth of the nations—
their kings led in triumphal procession.
For the nation or kingdom that will not serve you will perish;
it will be utterly ruined.
The glory of Lebanon will come to you,
the juniper, the fir and the cypress together,
to adorn my sanctuary;
and I will glorify the place for my feet.
The children of your oppressors will come bowing before you;
all who despise you will bow down at your feet
and will call you the City of the Lord,
Zion of the Holy One of Israel.
Although you have been forsaken and hated,
with no one traveling through,
I will make you the everlasting pride
and the joy of all generations.
You will drink the milk of nations
and be nursed at royal breasts.
Then you will know that I, the Lord, am your Savior,
your Redeemer, the Mighty One of Jacob.
Instead of bronze I will bring you gold,
and silver in place of iron.
Instead of wood I will bring you bronze,
and iron in place of stones.
I will make peace your governor
and well-being your ruler.
No longer will violence be heard in your land,
nor ruin or destruction within your borders,
but you will call your walls Salvation
and your gates Praise.
The sun will no more be your light by day,
nor will the brightness of the moon shine on you,
for the Lord will be your everlasting light,
and your God will be your glory.
Your sun will never set again,
and your moon will wane no more;
the Lord will be your everlasting light,
and your days of sorrow will end.
Then all your people will be righteous
and they will possess the land forever.
They are the shoot I have planted,
the work of my hands,
for the display of my splendor.
of you will become a thousand,
the smallest a mighty nation.
I am the Lord;
in its time I will do this swiftly."
The second scripture is from Song of Solomon 2: 9-10.
“My beloved is like a gazelle or a young stag. Behold, he stands behind our wall…” (NKJV) Our beloved Jesus in calling to us!
Let us always keep our eternal perspective that we are sojourners here, and that every one of us has been given a plan and destiny, and that we are indeed marked by God’s signet ring! He is looking through the windows; He is peering through the lattice.
"My beloved spoke and said to me, Arise, my darling, my beautiful one, come with me. See! The winter is past; the rains are over and gone." (Song of Solomon 2:10-11)
Our Bridegroom is standing at the door offering for us hope now. His Kingdom is here and these verses light up my spirit to pray:
'Father, I am so glad that we are here for such a time as this; that we can make a difference for You, before we go on to the next leg of our journey.
Thank you for twice choosing us. Help us to make the most of what we learn and to do your bidding.
Thank you God as you prepare us, as you did Esther , for our meeting with You, Oh King, and that we can see your scepter extended to us, and hear You say: ‘What is it Queen Esther, Even up to half of the kingdom, it will be given unto you”, ( and heal our land).
Direct our steps, educate us, show us our part, bless us with courage and boldness, to spread the truth to all that need to hear it.
Bless each and every reader, and thank You for meeting our every need.
As we take care of Your people, we thank You that You take care of us.
Lord, we don’t want to miss a heartbeat of what You have for us.
Keep us in Your Will.
Help us Lord, to look through the windshields or our lives and not the rear view mirrors, so we can lay hold of the now and forever.
Bless our land again, and return it to the Christian principles it was founded on!
In Your Name we pray. AMEN!'
As we are changed internally we can become the world changers for “SUCH A TIME AS THIS”, as Esther was, and save our nation, now!