Welcome to my blog where you'll find a variety of INpowering truths, Tiney Thoughts and Twittistry,org.
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Thursday, December 8, 2011

Is God manifest-ING anything these days?

I always feel like God is up to something! In fact I know he is, I like how he expressed it in Jeremiah 29:11 when he said:

For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.

If you’re like me you have some ‘desires of your heart’ on the altar and are excitedly waiting for the manifestation. Speaking of manifestation, what is that? We hear people talk about it and The Word speaks of it but really what is it? Merriam Webster dictionary defines manifestation as the act, process or instance of manifesting. I like that; nothing manifest naturally or spiritually without a process. Sometimes the process is known to us and sometimes it’s a hidden process; regardless the end result or manifestation is what we long and have faith for!
To manifest simply means to appear, come, lighten, be revealed, be made naked, to take off the cover, to make bare, to make known, to make manifest, to disclose---to lay open what has been veiled or covered up.

Just as Jesus spoke to the disciples in parables we often use analogies and examples to help us better understand; one example we often hear is that of a woman in childbirth going through the process of delivery to manifest her child. There is a process to birthing a child…no matter the method of delivery there is still a process to getting the child from the mother’s womb to the earth realm, until the child is revealed his or her facial features, eye color, sound of his or her cry remain unknown or hidden. The Lord takes us through a labor process in the spiritual realm before we see the manifesation. Some people have early labor while others have active labor(intense pain) or both...but there is a process.

Manifesting is multi-dimensional in that the ING indicates to us that it is progressive in nature…it is never static but alive with action, movement and motion. Anything that is manifest-ING is in motion. Sometimes manifesting is painful just as a woman in labor has labor pains and on the flip side not all women experience pain in childbirth but still they have healthy beautiful babies. Likewise, sometimes God shields us from the pain of the labor process while he is manifesting things in our lives but there is still a process taking place—there is still motion happening.

This is a season of greater manifestation. Spiritually we often hear manifestation used in a positive context but we have to understand that dimensions of manifestation also include God uncovering and disclosing things that are not of him. There are things which Jesus has “by process” attempted to bring correction and grace too; he’s long suffering and merciful and the exposure we’re seeing in various arena’s has come after a process. Simply put…Proverbs 16:18 says that Pride goeth before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall.

Any time we see God uncover or lay open what has been veiled with a man or woman of God and disclose (manifest) ungodliness we know that a process of redemptive grace preceded the uncovering…that’s just the kind of God we serve! This dimension of manifest-ING is filled with motion just as receiving the blessings of God are filled with motion.

The base of the word manifest takes its meaning from 1) to hinder the knowledge of a thing and 2)to take away by stealth (Klepto) and 3) a wholesome part is taken from … such as in there is separation, departure, cessation, completion and reversal—do you notice that all of these are motion?

Manifest-ING is a multi-dimensional process. The end result of manifesting can yield what we often call positive or not-so-positive results but even when God uncovers ungodliness, it is positive because it offers that individual another opportunity to sincerely repent.

When God prepares to release his blessings, things we’ve been praying about and waiting on …things we’ve exercised faith concerning, the hidden things…he through the motion of his anointing takes it from where it is, even if the enemy is trying to hold it up and makes it known to us in the earth realm –he manifest it. He unveils it. He uncovers it. He reveals it. He discloses it.

Likewise, when he prepares to release his blessing of uncovering ungodliness he does the same thing…that which has been hidden is taken from where it is, the covers are moved back and an unveiling takes place; he manifest it. AND, yes it is a blessing. One inmate said to me "I never would have stopped, if I had not been uncovered!"

Is God manifesting anything these days? Absolutely! IN every dimension he’s manifest-ING. He’s taking us through the process whether we see or feel the effects of the process or not, it’s happening.

Just another Tiney Thought....

[In case you’re wonder-ING why Tiney is spelled that way it’s my maternal family name not a misspelled word-LOL. ]

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And see my photo musings at http://flickr.com/photos/ebbystouch

Saturday, October 8, 2011

But a Vapour.....

I think death has to be one of those awkward moments where you just don’t know what to say for a lot of people. There are hundreds if not thousands of books written on the topic of how to comfort those that are mourning. I thought about this today as I posted on Facebook and beyond that one of my sisters (I had 21 siblings total-what a blessing!) went on today, she was a beautiful God-loving jewel. I don’t say that because she was my sister, but she truly was beautiful inside and out. I took time to notify my photography clients that are scheduled in the coming weeks that there is a probability that I may need to reschedule their appointments and an interesting thing happened. In my notification I was specific that I lost my sister in a car accident and other family members are injured; the responses made me think. Some said “thanks”, others said “Oh, okay” and I began to think about words; not just those said but also those not said.

Life is very fragile and as The Word of God tells us it is like a vapour (James 4:14). We don’t know when our time or moment is and we can’t spend it in fear wondering when that time will come…BUT we can be ready… one second could change everything. The question each of us must ask ourselves is “are we prepared to meet Jesus?” If we aren't today is just as good a day as tomorrow--in fact, even better:)
Tragedies always seem to make us reflect on things like this and make us remember our words or lack thereof. Sometimes we can embrace the passing of a loved one better when it's not sudden and we've had time to prepare our minds and hearts but sometimes there is just no preparing no matter what. It's a wonderful thing when Jesus is your strength!

Some of the comments I received prompted me to think...

1. Are people uncomfortable being a comfort to others?
2. Are they at a loss for what they consider “the right words” so they say nothing?
3. Have we become so engrossed with ourselves that we cannot empathize or sympathize with others? In other words, we just don’t care.

It was very thought provoking. As Christians and believers, do we ever really stop to show love and offer more than a passing prayer for those who are hurting? Have we taken the time in our journey to know how to comfort others? Scriptures and prayers will be a tremendous comfort to some but others will need your silent presence and a shoulder to cry on as they heal. What you say is so important …and what you don’t say is also important.

Many children have never heard their parents tell them they love them. Many husbands and wives long to hear those words… I’m not saying that saying it alone is all that is necessary…there must be action and an expression of love. In fact, we know that Jesus spoke to that matter in Mark 7:6 when he said many honour him with their lips but there heart is far from him. If you haven’t told someone that you love that you love them…don’t wait any longer. Say it if you mean it and if you mean it SAY it.

I was blessed to have a day with my sister in July as I vacationed in Atlanta and I thank God for the opportunity to see her before she transitioned…thankful to have had the chance to hug her and look into her eyes and say “I love you” from my heart. There are thousands like me today… missing a loved one. For some they never said "I love you" even though they did.  For all I sincerely pray…

Just another tiney thought….

Monday, September 19, 2011

Tattered Capes.

It’s been a while since I’ve written anything on this blog, and I do miss writing but finding the time to write is a challenge within itself. I could say that I don’t have the time but that wouldn’t be true…it’s more like I don’t make the time. After all that’s what prioritizing is…it’s making the time for things you deem important and when we don’t make the time we’re simply saying with our actions “that’s not important right now.”

I had a thought provoking conversation with a wonderful online friend that I hope to meet face to face one day and she called me “superwoman” and I thought to myself…if only she knew. I mean I do get a lot done…just not always the right things get done. Take for example a conversation my husband and I had this week, we live in an always tidy home… minus my messes. Okay, I guess that’s not 'always' tidy then is it? LOL
I’m not exactly the house keeper I used to be. Don’t misunderstand, our home is clean and everything is in its place except for the times when things are not in their place—which is happening more and more since I have an in-home photography studio.

The other day I had four models scheduled for a shoot, they all use the same dressing area so you can imagine that there is plenty of products like make-up, jewelry, safety pins, bobbie pins, hair combs, brushes, applicators, stray hairs etc that happen in that dressing area. For me it’s expected but for my husband, it’s scary! He just happened to see the dressing area after the shoot and was taken aback by it ---therefore I had to explain to him that I am not Superwoman and a dirty dressing area after a shoot is kind of …let’s say 'normal'. I’m not talking filth…I’m just talking things not put away.

I said all of that to say this, God does not expect us to be Superwomen (or Superman). I’m so okay not putting that pressure on myself to be a superwoman and I hope you aren’t caping up and going out to save the world either. Mainly because you can’t! Stop trying. You can’t run to the rescue every time a family member needs something, you can’t say yes to every project others want you to be involved in…you just can’t.

This is nothing new…you’ve known this for a long time already ..it’s just a reminder that Superwomen in the end find they have tattered capes and they’ve devoted more time to everyone else and everything else often leaving their own personal devotion, family and things they find pleasure in unattended. Is that pleasing to God?

We hear a lot about balance but what is that and how do we achieve it? When you find out clue me in...please. The best starting point I can think of is found in Proverbs  3:5-6.

Proverbs 3:5 Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.
6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. 

If you are feeling disconnected, needing some quiet time alone with God not just for you sharing your petitions with him but time to actually hear him, be loved on by him, and to get some insight into his word…take it!
Make it a priority which says “it’s important to me”. It’s time out for saying we don’t have time for the things that really matter and fess up that sometimes we just don’t make time…time to de-cape ladies. You can’t do it all! And to be honest some of it is unproductive anyway—LOL.

So do what’s really, really important, Make the time. Just another Tiney Thought.

You can more of my photography at http://facebook.com/ebbystouch.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Is it Worldly Sorrow ?

I was up recently at 3am counseling a brother and his wife, he’s an addict and she’s had enough! He talked and I listened. He’s been though many programs and has been an addict for many years. His life cycle has been up, down and up, down and you guessed it…up, down.

Most would look at him and dismiss him and say ” he’s never going to change and he’s never going to be anything in life.” Contrary to what people believe he’s already something in life…we just have to take the time and have the spiritual insight to see him through the eyes of Christ and not our own eyes. That can be hard to do when we often view people and situations through our emotions and feelings, instead of seeing them as Jesus Christ sees them. l’ve grown stronger in this area over the years....

I’ve known this addict for forty-six (46) years, I knew him before he began doing drugs and I knew him when a man set his fifteen month old baby on fire. I knew him when he got shot six times at point blank range and one of the impacts to his leg was so powerful it literally twisted the leg around backwards(foot turned toward his back) and they said he’d never walk again—he’s walking. I knew him when his mother passed and he blamed himself for her death because he felt his addiction brought too much stress on her. I was there when he went to prison, I visited him there. He’s a good friend and a hard worker secularly and in the Kingdom. Maybe you know someone like him…every family seems to have one. Maybe it's not street drugs that's a problem in your family....maybe it's food addictions, sex addictions,lying addictions, being messy addictions, or an addiction to drama and division or maybe it's legalized drugs like alcohol or prescription medication. I know that comes as a shock to some of you but YES prescription medicine is a drug too and many in the church and out of the church are addicted to them. I’ll close that with a simple SELAH.

Fast forward. My time with the brother revealed a Strongman named Guilt and Shame. Guilt and Shame have been playing all of the negatives of this man’s life over and over in his head and his spirit like a audio recording that just won’t stop. Some of you that are reading this have a recording in your life that just won’t stop…voices in your head that remind you of your ‘perceived’ failures, tell you that you aren’t who God says you are, cause you to operate in a FALSE sense of responsibility and cause you to blame yourself for things that ONLY God can do. Guilt and Shame are able to do what they do for one reason—Unforgiveness.

We have to learn how to forgive ourselves just as well as we have to learn how to forgive others and the enemy uses this to his great advantage. This isn't anything new, you've heard it time and time again but hearing it and doing it are vastly different things!

Here’s a common lie the enemy tells….”you’re too bad and you’ve done too many bad things for God to forgive you!” You haven’t done anything so horrible that God can’t forgive it. In most cases if you’ve truly repented and notice I said TRULY then God has already extended his love, grace and mercy but you have built yourself a prison and Guilt and Shame are your cement and bricks. Tear it down! 

What allows the Strongman to torment us with Guilt and Shame? After all, godly sorrow works repentance right? We quote that a lot in the church but we negate the rest of the story in 2 Corinthians 7:10.

For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death.

The sorrow of the world works death...humnnn. To be bound to anything that causes us to self destruct is death. And yes, I did say anything because there are other things that some have Guilt and Shame over –even things like gluttony which has an addictive nature of its own. This will throw you for a loop, some are addicted to church. No, I'm not talking about Christ but wood and brick, they think being there every time the doors are open is 'saving' them and they neglect family and other responsibilities and then have Guilt and Shame. Uh-O.  

Do you think the sorrow of the world is –“I’m not sorry I did it, I’m sorry I got caught?” OR I’m sorry you saw me do it. OR does it run deeper than that and maybe the sorrow of the world is the mere fact that God’s grace and mercy has been extended but we’ve rejected it (sometimes unknowlingly) therefore the things we’ve done and even confessed are not removed as far from us as the east is from the west?

You can confess your sins and faults and repent and turn from them, but you have to actually receive the love, grace and mercy of Jesus Christ to be free of the Strongman that holds the gate open for your torment. Forgive you. Yes, you did it! Yes, it was wrong and bad! Yes, if you could turn back time you’d do things differently! Yes, Christ has forgiven you if you have godly sorrow! Yes, you can turn that recorder off by receiving that Jesus is done with it and you don’t have to beat yourself up over it and you don’t have to let people remind you of it—agree with your adversary quickly!
Yes I did it! Yes, Jesus forgave me and Yes I forgive me!

And guess what, we all have an area where some godly sorrow is in order….if we say we don’t we lie to ourselves and build for ourselves a prison of self-deceit. This is another Tiney thought.....

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Lord, Show Me a Sign!

I had an interesting conversation with one of my spiritual daughters recently; she knew the Lord was speaking to her with an idea that he wants her to carry through to completion but she was seeking an ‘anchor’. An anchor? Define anchor, what does that mean?

After much discussion I learned that this anchor is another word for assurance. It made me think, I mean really, really think. God says do something and we say give me a sign that it’s okay for me to do what you’re telling me to do. I know it’s you saying do it Lord but to be perfectly honest I’m going to need you to do something to show me that you have my back and won’t let me fall! Oh and yes, I trust you but I just need an anchor.

How many times has our need for an anchor kept us from stepping out in faith on the very thing God had given us to do? Probably more times than we’d like to admit. It’s not that we aren’t aware that it’s the Lord stirring us forward, but fear of the unknown, fear of falling and failing always seem to be magnified over our obedience to God. How does that happen?

We love the Lord and have a heart to obey him but when he says GO and DO we sometimes say I will IF you’ll show me an anchor. Gideon asked for an anchor when he put out the fleece or the threshing floor in Judges 6:36-40. But how many times will we put out the fleece before we obey God and how much time have we lost waiting for God to respond by fleece instead of us responding IN faith?

It’s interesting that in Judges 6:39 Gideon prefaced his next act with “let not thine anger be hot” against me. That’s a definite WOW moment, do we think God even in his longsuffering towards us is sometimes bothered because we absolutely refuse to exercise even mustard seed sized faith in some instances but rather opt for an anchor?

This reminds me of the Israelites in Deut 1:26-33; who in their rebellion refused to take the Land. Seriously, God has given us so much and we like the Israelites are refusing to take it, refusing to possess it because we need an anchor to cast off our fears and apprehensions and be sure. The Israelites had been brought out of bondage and kept in their wilderness experience—every need provided for!

After God had walked with them and been their wilderness guide and it was time to get their stuff they couldn’t or should I say wouldn't trust God. They needed an anchor ( further assurance) so they sent spies ahead to scope out the land. Even after scoping and getting a good report they still refused The Promise. Are we refusing The Promise? Are we waiting on our anchor again and again? How long will we wait? How many anchors will we need?

Just another Tiney Thought

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Does Death Sting?

A family member passed today and it’s never a great occasion for us when those we care about and love transition from this life to life eternal. So many thoughts have gone through my mind on this as I wonder is it a sheer act of selfishness to want to keep them with us…is it more about us than about them and on an even greater scale, is it more about us than about God’s divine timing for this transition.

Three years ago a care giving facility allowed my mother to lay and die due to lack of medical treatment, she had insight into something being wrong and asked that her children be called-they refused. I was the first of my family to see her after she slipped into a coma; it’s never easy to let go and even more challenging when the circumstances that lead to death are on this premise.
I reflect back to the peace that was so evident and so thick in my mother’s room as she lay in a coma for three days, for some that have never experienced the peace of God it would seem to be a strange and unfamiliar presence; for me it signified that all was well with her and God and that she was transitioning IN peace. There was no fear, no fright. Even though she was in a coma and unable to speak it was a though she was saying –come get me Jesus I’m ready to go home. But this is not the case for everyone, some people (Christians included) fear death, why is that? Why does death still hold such a sting?

We know the Scriptures, quote them verbatim, share them with others as they go through times of bereavement but are we ourselves ready to transition. I mean really ready and if our transition is not sudden like my mother who stayed in a coma for three days before passing, would there be evidence to our loved ones that we are transitioning WITH peace and IN peace or would they see that a time where we are supposedly going to be with God is a time of great fear for us. My mother’s death testified as loudly as her life did … will we be able to say the same?

2 Corinthians 5:6 Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord:

Just another Tiney Thought~

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Shhh, Badu is on to something!

Please comment on the actual blog, click here
Wait, everyone I know it’s about art and music and it’s controversial but I really want to hear the rest of what she has to say about those layers and demons. Shhhh.

You can read the story by clicking here. I know what she did and that JFK's assasignation site is considered sacred ground(probably considered more sacred than Jesus by some!?) and I know many said it was distasteful but is there a main message or theme being overlooked? Groupthink, layers, demons etc. Shhhh!

The news is still buzzing with reports that American soul singer Erykah Badu has caused a stir with a music video in which she strips naked in public at the site of President John F. Kennedy's assassination, and falls to the ground as if shot…..

According to reports the Dallas-born entertainer strips down in Dealey Plaza in the city center, and falls to the ground with a jerk at the sound of a rifle shot, which was edited into the five-and-a-half minute video. Badu, said the song was about "liberating yourself from layers and layers of skin or demons."

Huh? Layers and layers of skin or demons? Groupthink? Maybe Badu is on to something!

Groupthink may be a 1950’s term but the concept and principles are very much alive in the church today, people are going with the flow and sometimes against God’s word to remain cohesive, have less friction and fit in. Critical thinking and analytical skills are watered down to keep the peace. Exactly how far are we willing to go to keep the peace?

I like the way Webster’s defines groupthink: a pattern of thought characterized by self-deception, forced manufacture of consent, and conformity to group values and ethics.

What caught my attention here is ‘self deception’. Think about it;  going with the flow especially when that flow is not Christ-centered is a form of self deception and the root cause of that is generally rejection, the fear of rejection or people pleasing. I think Badu is on to something! And yes this is generally layers and layers of demons.

Attention Christians: Follow Jesus.
If you are doing what they say just to please THEM and what they are saying does not align with God’s word you are operating in idolatry. Many Christians have practiced this form of people pleasing so long it has become layered—like an onion. Or like skin… yep, I think Badu is on to something!

She's onto something the church and body of Christ needs to hear, discern and walk out--Be FREE INDEED. We are called to be fitly joined together (Eph 4:16), walking in unity of peace with one vision-God's vision. BUT to often the deeply layered demon of rejection cause us to to fit-in rather than being fitly joined. Groupthink is not your friend.

No, I'm not an Erykah Badu fan and I'm not saying what she did was okay, I'm just saying that Badu is on to something! ~ Just another Tiney Thought.

[Join Me for INpowering Truth,  don’t forget to set a reminder for ‘Breaking The Chains’ at 7:30PM on Saturday, April 24, 2010. Save the call in number in your cell in case you’re out and about. It’s 1-724-444-7444 Call ID 33937. Shhhh, Badu is on to something!]