Passover: 2017 A Time Of Change, Transitions, and Miracles.

Passover is a season of heightened spiritual activity. It starts on April 10th and ends on April 18th. This is a time of change, a time of transitions, and a time of miracles. God is doing some amazing things in our lives! I’ve been getting testimony after testimony, and I thank God for them. God is giving His people EVIDENCE!
Now is the season of contending for your prophetic promise and purpose. Make no mistake about this, you are in a FIGHT! For some of us, this fight is an internal struggle. For some it is a fight to reach a breakthrough. Or perhaps, there is a situation that is coming to a conclusion and victory. No matter what it is, do not worry… God is with you!
In Exodus 14 is the story of Moses leading the Hebrews to the Promised Land. Their path lead them to the edge of the Red Sea with Pharaoh and his chariots in pursuit after they were released from slavery.

Exodus 14:13-14 (NLT) But Moses told the people, “Don’t be afraid. Just stand still and watch the Lord rescue you today. The Egyptians you see today will never be seen again. 14 The Lord himself will fight for you. Just stay calm.

The Hebrews were not fighters yet. They were no match for the Egyptian Army. It looked in the natural like they were facing a return to slavery or death. Yet, in the midst of this situation, the Word from the LORD was “Don’t be afraid. Just stand still and watch the Lord rescue you today. The Egyptians you see today will never be seen again. The Lord himself will fight for you. Just stay calm.
I know you want to speak up. I know you want to defend yourself. I know you want to make a stand. Your natural mind may be dealing with fear, but let me give you a testimony… God is not only giving you sound council… He is God, and He will fight the battle on your behalf! How terrifying for your enemies!
In these times when God has given me instructions to remain still and silent, it is amazing to see God work through what others would call “coincidence” or “chance”. But when you are a person of faith, you know there is no such thing as “coincidence” or “chance”. As a person of faith, one thing you need to keep in mind as well is that if you do intervene on your own behalf when you have instructions from God to be still, you cancel your miracle through an act of unbelief.
You may be saying to yourself, “But David… if you knew the situation I am facing right now…” And you are right, I do not know the details of what you are facing. But one thing that I do know about is how to let go, and let God!
Let me be frank with you…In the natural, I shouldn’t have a ministry today. I should be in poverty, on drugs, or in jail… or all three. That is where my life was headed early on. I wasn’t “ministry material.” But I loved God and I became an expert in just one thing… trusting God.
I learned to hold His hand and let Him guide me. I could give you testimony after testimony about how God delivered me out of situations and circumstance. But its not about me… God is no respecter of persons. 

If God did it for me, He will do it for you.

Exodus 14 ends with this:

“When the people of Israel saw the mighty power that the Lord had unleashed against the Egyptians, they were filled with awe before him. They put their faith in the Lord and in his servant Moses.”

This is what letting go and letting God leads to… awe-inspired VICTORY at no cost and an even greater faith. No wonder the enemy is fighting you!
The greater the battle, the greater the spoils. Stay the course! Keep your faith! Stand and see the victory of the LORD come to pass in your life.

 

 

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Total Surrender To God and HIS Plan!

Total Surrender To God and HIS Plan!

Moses answered the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the LORD will bring you today. The Egyptians you see today you will never see again. The LORD will fight for you; you need only to be still.”—Exodus 14:13–14

One of the most encouraging messages of Passover is that when things seem most hopeless, there is always room for hope. The climax of the Passover story occurred when the children of Israel were sandwiched between the entire Egyptian army bearing down on them and the Red Sea. If ever there was a time to lose faith, it was at that moment.

Yet, from that moment of desperation comes one of the greatest moments of salvation – and a message of hope for all time.

Things only seem hopeless when we make the mistake of thinking that we are in control. If we can’t do it, then it simply can’t be done – there is no hope. The doctor can’t operate – so healing won’t come. I don’t earn enough money – so I’ll never get out of debt. When we are so sure that we alone hold the keys to our salvation, it’s no wonder that so many doors seem closed. It’s only when we give those keys to God that miracles can happen and hope can be found.

I love this story about a sparrow who loved to fly high in the sky, innocent and free. One day, the sparrow sensed imminent danger. She looked down to see a hunter pointing a rifle right in her direction. As the sparrow tried to flee from the danger, she noticed more trouble coming from above. An eagle was eyeing her like a piece of candy. The sparrow realized that she had no choices left and decided instead to surrender her life to God. In that precise moment, God sent a snake to bite the hunter, causing him to misfire his rifle, sending a bullet flying toward the eagle, killing it, and setting the sparrow free.

The message: Don’t surrender to life; surrender to God. Don’t give up hope; place your hope in God. Take comfort and encouragement from the words of Moses to the Israelites in their most desperate moment: “Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the LORD will bring you today . . . The LORD will fight for you; you need only to be still.”

When all hope seems lost, God will fight for us. When there is nothing left that we can do, God can do anything. We need only to have hope, hang on, and give up our lives to God.

Surrender today!

Shalom….Peace,

djs

Passover 2016

Passover 2016

The way we celebrate Passover today is not how it was originally commemorated. When the Temple stood, the main focus of Passover was the offering which was brought in remembrance of the first offering originally made on the eve of the Exodus. As you may recall, God commanded the children of Israel to sacrifice a lamb, place its blood on their doorframes, and then “eat the meat roasted over the fire, along with bitter herbs, and bread made without yeast.” In Temple times, the nation of Israel would eat the Passover offering in the same way. Today, we observe a modified version of this ritual. On Passover night, we eat bitter herbs together with matzah, bread without yeast.

The sages point out that the bitter herbs and the matzah represents two opposite ideas. The bitter herbs represent slavery; matzah symbolizes redemption – it was the bread that didn’t have time to rise when salvation came in the blink of an eye. Today, there is an added element in the bitter herb-matzah combination. We add haroset, a sweet mixture made of fruit, nuts, and wine that is meant to remind us of the mortar used by the Israelites as slaves in Egypt. Haroset reminds us of bitter times, and yet, at the same time, it tastes sweet with its fruit and wine.

On Passover night, we mix the bitter and the sweet, slavery and freedom, oppression and redemption. Why? Because it is all part of one story.

In life, we tend to separate our good times and bad times. We have dry seasons and seasons of abundance. We don’t like the trying times in our lives, and we long for the more comfortable, blessed times. But the truth is, as we learn on Passover, it’s all a blessing. The adversity in our lives is what leads us to our greatest victories.

God sends us bitter times so that we may become better people. He sends us challenges so that we might rise above them. When God told Abraham about the slavery and redemption that would befall his descendants, God said: “Know for certain that for four hundred years your descendants will be strangers in a country not their own and that they will be enslaved and mistreated there. But I will punish the nation they serve as slaves, and afterward they will come out with great possessions” (Genesis 15:13–14). God promised that there would be bitterness, but then there would also be blessings.

Friends, know today that anything that tastes bitter in your life right now is preparing you for sweet blessings in the future. Have faith . . . the best is yet to come!

Shalom & Peace,

djs

Finding True Fulfillment In Life

Finding True Fulfillment In Life

In a world full of distractions and endless ways to spend our time and energy, how do we use the time that we have each day? And even more importantly, how do we feel at the end of a day? Do we find ourselves fulfilled from ALL of our engagements? We touch so many people throughout a single day that we don’t always realize how we are impacting others. Colossians 3:23-24 points out that whatever we are doing, we are to do it “heartily” or with our entire heart. We are to be pouring out ourselves into what we do. And the amazing thing is that if we are doing this, God gives us the knowledge and understanding that we need to accomplish our tasks. But the important caveat is that we do it with our entire heart. If we half-heartedly approach every day, our jobs, people, anything really, how can we be fulfilled? How can we fill up others if we are half-hearted? How can we serve joyfully? Ephesians 6:6-8 admonishes us to serve “from the heart”—with good will. There is no room for back-biting, hate, ill-will, or anything negative.

How hard is it though to not complain when things go wrong? When we think that things should be different than what they are? When we think we are being treated unfairly or unkindly? How do we react? We would do better to keep in mind the words Solomon wrote down for us in Ecclesiastes 7:20-22. We must be careful with the attitudes and the thoughts that we allow ourselves to have. We must come to rely on God more and more for wisdom and understanding in ALL matters.

James 4:7-9 gives us the right ideas in this regard. We need to be submitting ourselves to God to fully understand how we can fulfill our days in the right ways. In verses 13-17, James goes on to admonish us that in the scheme of things, our lives are over so quickly. All our strivings and goals are in vain if they are not rightly ordained by God. He indeed sets our courses. When we go wrong and need adjustment, He makes corrections, as long as we are willing to accept them and get back on the right track.

So let us ask ourselves these questions:

How fulfilled do we find ourselves at the end of each day?

How willing are we to seek God and allow Him to lead?

As we approach the Passover, what can we take away from this short time we have left in examining ourselves? Ephesians 5:16 tells us that we should be “redeeming the time” by making the BEST use of our time, “because the days are evil.”

David had the right approach in Psalm 127:2. Even though our work may be heavy and burdensome, when we do it with God’s Will in mind, seeking what He wants, then we can go to bed at the end of the day and feel fulfilled because God will give us good rest. And He will recharge us for our continual fight each and every day. Psalm 90:12 says: “So teach us to number our days That we may gain a heart of wisdom.” Let us allow Godly wisdom and understanding fill us up each day so that we may feel fulfilled and others may see that and be encouraged to follow our example.

djs

Passover…..2015

On Passover, the Jewish tradition is to read the Song of Solomon. Why? One connection is with the Song of the Sea that the Israelites sang after experiencing the parting of the sea. The Song of Solomon relates to the unbounding joy felt by the Israelites on that particular occasion, which caused them to burst into song. However, there is another connection between the reading and the holiday. The Song of Solomon is a book about love, and at its core, the story of Passover is a story of love. It’s the love story of God and His people.

Even the name of the holiday points to the love element of the Passover story. In Hebrew, the holiday is called Pesach, taken from the verse that speaks about how God passed over the homes of the Israelites when He carried out the plague that killed every Egyptian’s firstborn son: “I will pass over you” (Exodus 12:13). However, while Pesach is commonly defined as “pass over,” a more accurate translation is that God would “skip over” or “leap over” the homes of the Israelites. The Jewish sages connect this to the verse from Song of Solomon: “The voice of my beloved! Behold, he comes, leaping over the mountains, bounding over the hills.”

The sages offer the following explanation: When Moses came to the Jewish people and said, “This month you will be redeemed,” they responded, “How can we leave when all of Egypt is filled with our idol worship?” Moses answered, “Since God desires to redeem you, He will not look at your idol worship. Rather, He is leaping over the mountains.” The Israelites said to him, “How can we be redeemed when only 210 years have passed out of the 400 years of the decree of slavery?” Moses said, “Since God desires to redeem you, He will not look at your calculations. Rather, He is leaping over the mountains.”

Friends, the celebration of Passover is also the celebration of God’s love for us. His love is so great that he skips over our shortcomings and passes over strict judgment. The foundation of our relationship with God is unconditional love.

So many people falter in their walk with God because they feel unworthy or think that God is mad at them because of their sins. But the truth is that God’s love for us is unwavering. There are times when we must be held accountable for our actions, but that doesn’t diminish His love for us. God desires us even when we act undesirably. He wants us even when we don’t do what He wants. God loves us even when we turn away from Him. God loves us unconditionally. During this holy season for Christians and Jews, let’s celebrate that fact and love Him in return.

(DJS)