Finding Faith in the Midst of Fear

Finding Faith in the Midst of Fear

2 Kings 6:15-17 has become one of my favorite Scriptures over the last couple years.

“The servant of the man of God woke up early and went outside. There he saw a great army, along with many horses and chariots, encircling Dothan. 

Elisha’s Servant: Ah! Master, what are we going to do now?

Elisha: Have no fear. We have more on our side than they do. (praying) O Eternal One, I ask You allow my servant to see heavenly realities. 

The Eternal awakened Elisha’s servant so that he could see. This is what he saw: the mountain was covered with horses and chariots of fire surrounding Elisha.” (The Voice)

I wrote my devotional, Journey Through the Door, opening with this passage as a great example of the fact we, as humans, can actually see into the heavenly realm.

I love this particular story because Elisha’s servant was filled with fear over what he was seeing in the natural realm – a great army surrounding them. But Elisha saw past the natural circumstances and saw what heaven held – an even greater army of heaven, surrounding them in protection.

Often, we too, are surrounded by real and frightening circumstances that cause us to fear like Elisha’s servant. But we are called to be like Elisha, and see into another reality.

Heaven is available to the Believer – to fight for us and with us, against anything the enemy is coming against us with. When we can see what is happening in this realm, fear will leave us!

Nothing brings peace like seeing and experiencing the protection of the Lord, and His presence, to walk us through whatever circumstances we are faced with.

God is perfect love and 1 John 4:18 tells us that,

“Love will never evoke fear. Perfect love expels fear…” (The Voice)

Seeing what God sees will expel every fear we have. It’s not that we are in denial of the situation, it’s that we can see that God and His kingdom are bigger than we ever imagined and He is our Protector.

We can find faith – that ability to find confidence and trust in God – when we see heavenly realities. Faith will rise above fear, even in the darkest of situations.

My glimpse into heavenly realities…. 

Recently, the Lord showed me a picture of someone who had been fighting against the enemy for a long time. They had stood and fought for so long that they were weary and contemplating raising a white flag of surrender to the enemy.

But, what the person couldn’t see, is that Jesus was riding up on a horse behind them. Jesus was carrying a red flag – a flag of battle.

The revelation I got out of this heavenly picture is that, God is right behind us, ready to fight our battle with us and for us, if we will not give in and surrender.

And so I pray for grace for anyone who is fearful or weary of fighting. God, your Protector is riding up to fight this battle and bring victory to you!

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Pain and Escapism

Pain and Escapism

Though my journey of encountering the Lord and seeing into the heavenly realms began before my miscarriage last May, my encounters with the Lord are one of the main things that gave me grace through such a traumatic time. And out of that season I decided to write and publish my first book, Journey Through the Door, which is all about encountering the Lord.

In this journey of sadness, any time I have been grieved to the point of despair, I have told the Lord, “I need to see my son.” He has so graciously opened up my heavenly eyes to see in His realm and I have seen my son – usually playing with his big brother, or Jesus or even interacting with angels. A few times my Malachi has even spoken to me. Without these moments, my heart would still be a broken mess. Instead, though my heart was broken by losing my son last year, there has been tremendous healing that has taken place.

Just a couple months ago, the Lord spoke the word “escapism” to me. I didn’t even really know what it meant so I looked it up,

“the avoidance of reality by absorption of the mind in entertainment or in an imaginative situation, activity, etc.”

The Lord began to speak to me about how even encounters and seeing His realm could become escapism if one didn’t bring the grace and revelation of the encounters back into the life they were living right here and right now.

Experiencing heavenly realms has been a healing experience for me but He gave warning that experiencing heaven was not to remove any one from the reality of living on earth. He has created us human and placed us on this planet. It is our realm for this moment in history.

This realm – our realm – of life will bring trauma, loss, heartache and misfortune, and humanity is forever looking to numb the pain of these things. Pain hurts. We don’t like to hurt. When we begin to hurt, our immediate response is to get rid of the pain.

But Jesus was different than us. He endured the most painful and traumatic death of the Cross yet when He was offered a pain-killer, He refused.

“Arriving at Golgotha, the place they call ‘Skull Hill’, they offered him a mild painkiller  (a mixture of wine and myrrh), but when he tasted it he wouldn’t drink it.” Matthew 27:34 (The Message)

Jesus wanted to feel everything. And the ‘everything’ was brutal and hellish. But for YOU, He embraced the pain.

As we walk through painful experiences in life, it’s easy to walk in denial or compartmentalize or just stuff things away in the back closet of our hearts. Honestly, I think Believers are some of the highest offenders. We know the ‘right’ way to feel, to respond, to pray… so instead of embracing what is in front of us, we babble off a Scripture and move on. And, in doing so, we embrace a lifestyle of escapism.

We don’t want to feel the pain. So we find something to numb it and pretend it’s not there. Some of us have done this so long, we honestly don’t remember it’s there, until someday, there’s so much pain stuffed, that we pop. And some sort of sinful behavior displays itself. It could be fits of anger, drinking too much, busyness is popular in Christian circles, even immersing ourselves into constant ministry… any thing to silence and numb the pain.

But escaping pain is never what Jesus intended. He told us we would face pain. But He always intended on us truly overcoming and finding healing for the wounds that are causing the pain.

“I have told you these things so that you will be whole and at peace. In this world, you will be plagued with times of trouble, but you need not fear; I have triumphed over this corrupt world order.” ~John 16:33 (The Voice)

And so He wants us to bring our pain to Him. To walk through it with Him. He wants us to face it, never alone, but with Him and to let Him minister to our hearts. He wants to heal the wound that is causing us pain.

But He will never have access to healing that wound, if we continue to “avoid reality” in escapism.

If you are ready to quit trying to escape and numb your pain and ready to face it head on with Jesus, I highly recommend the book, “Heart Made Whole”,  by Christa Black-Gifford. This book releases in just 3 short weeks, and as I have had the honor of having an early release copy, I cannot say enough good things about this book. It will help you take the journey to having your heart truly healed. It will help you quit trying to escape the pain and give you the tools to find the path to freedom. There truly is freedom – from pain, from trauma, from hurts and wounds. Holy Spirit wants to take us there – if only we will give up all our methods of escapism and let Him minister to our hearts.

“The thief approaches with malicious intent, looking to steal, slaughter, and destroy; I came to give life with joy and abundance.” ~John 10:10 (The Voice)

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Dreams Do Come True

Dreams Do Come True

I’m a huge advocate of being a dreamer. I love Ephesians 3:20,

” Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine..” (NIV)

This verse lets me know that God actually loves it when I imagine great things AND He loves to blow my mind, by doing even greater things.

For a few years in a row our family filled out a ‘dream board’ at the beginning of the year. Just a big poster board that we wrote our dreams for the year on. It’s so much fun to “write the vision” (see Habakkuk 2:2) and then see what God will do over a 12 month span.

Last year, a dream, that’s been in my heart for many years, came to pass. I published my first book! Though there are many dreams that God fulfills solely by busting into our lives with His generosity, some dreams take some work.

I honestly can’t say this book was a lot of hard work but it did take time and effort to see it through to completion. But mainly, it took obedience and being in the right place and the right time…

See, God had already put His finger on me about getting this book together. I had started working on that but I had no idea how to see it through to being published. But, as I had taken that first step of obedience, He then sent me to a women’s conference halfway across the nation and set up a coffee date and orchestrated conversation… just to let me see my dream come true!

He loves to do this with His kiddos! He wants to blow your mind too! What dreams are in your heart? Have you written them down? Is there a step of obedience you need to take? Be intentional about dreaming and asking and obeying… because Dreams Really Do Come True!

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P.S. I highly recommend the book Dream Culture, by Andy Mason!

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My book, Journey Through the Door is a 31-day devotional for helping you to step into the realities of the heavenly realm. ORDER NOW!

 

 

 

 

What people are saying about Journey Through the Door…

“This is a great experiential devotional for people with hungry hearts for God! Dani has put together stories and truths to take the reader on a journey to knowing God better than many have dared imagine. It is for the courageous follower of Jesus who longs for a passionately engaging relationship with Him!” ~Jeff

“Journey Through the Door was an incredible book. Very different from other devotionals. It helped push me out of the box to actually ask God for a picture of me. I have given others pictures I’ve seen from God but it seemed kind of selfish to ask for myself. What I found out is God loves me so much and that He is a God of fun. He likes to do crazy things and laugh with me. He created me to have a relationship with Him. Not to just be holy and on my knees praying for others, although that is very necessary. But He cares about my feelings, about my having fun. He wants to have a real relationship with me. One like I would have with all my close friends. Thank you, Dani, for letting me go on this journey with you.” ~Connie

“THANK YOU for writing this book. It has challenged me in so many ways. Thank you for being vulnerable with us so that we can go deeper in our walk.” ~Jenni

Order your copy today at revivalrevolution.life/devotional!

Heavenly Realities

Heavenly Realities

I think all believers and even many non-Christians would say they believe in heaven. That heaven is a place out there that people go to when they die. Because it’s far away and out there and we honestly don’t know if we’re right until we show up there someday, it’s an easy belief to have.

A lesser talked about thought, is that heaven or heavenly realms can be accessed today – while we still live and breathe on this planet. My devotional, “Journey Through the Door” is all about how I believe this is true, that the Bible shows us this truth, and that we are actually all invited into the gift of visiting and experiencing God’s realm.

Within the Body of Christ, this is a hot button topic. Those who believe like I do, could be looked on as weird at the least, and heretical, deceived or linked into the New Age at the harshest. While my least favorite thing is debate, I think there’s enough instances in the Scriptures to ‘prove’ my belief. And, for me, with support of the Scriptures, my experiences (and hearing of others’ experiences) have confirmed and affirmed in my heart that the Lord truly has opened up His realm to us who He put on this planet. We are three-part beings capable of experiencing more than one realm.

One of my favorite instances of people seeing into God’s realm is in 2 Kings chapter 6, where the Syrians were surrounding the city of the people of God. Elisha’s servant sees this and is filled with fear but Elisha is undaunted. Elisha says this to his servant in verse 16-17 (The Voice),

Elisha: Have no fear. We have more on our side than they do. (praying) O Eternal One, I ask You to allow my servant to see heavenly realities. The Eternal awakened Elisha’s servant so that he could see. This is what he saw: the mountain was covered with horses and chariots of fire surrounding Elisha.

Heavenly realities didn’t override the fact that there was a physical army surrounding the city BUT heaven was aware, heaven was there and heaven was going to work with Elisha for a victory. (It’s really an amusing story if you want to continue to read in verses 18-23!)

I think there are many purposes in the invitation into heaven’s world. One of the most important is that getting a glimpse of heavenly realities can encourage us, fill us with hope and give us strength to face whatever physical realities we are facing. I love this about God and His Kingdom!

If this topic intrigues you, I encourage you to purchase a copy of my devotional, “Journey Through the Door”. It is available through Amazon HERE.

Bonus Post: Announcement time!!!

Bonus Post:  Announcement time!!!

My first book is in the process of being published and will be released in December! It’s a 31-day devotional and it will be available just in time to kick off January 2016! Go ‘like’ the “Journey Through the Door” Facebook page to get updates, to enter giveaways and for ordering information!

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In 2 Kings 6, Elisha prays that God would “allow my servant to see heavenly realities”. The Lord then awakens Elisha’s servant so that he could see. We are all invited by our loving Heavenly Father to see and experience these same realities. “Journey Through the Door” is a 31 day devotional empowering you into a deeper experience with Father God and His Kingdom. In this short book, Dani shares thirty-one of her own encounters in the heavenly realm as an invitation for you to walk through the door into your own heavenly experiences. If we are believers in the Lord Jesus, we will go to heaven one day but seeing into the heavenly realm is a gift that we can enjoy now, on this side of eternity, as well. This book exposes the fear that wants to hold us back from journeying through the door and reminds us that our Father only gives good gifts. Will you say yes to the invitation and the gift?

New Season in Life

New Season in Life

Today’s blog post can be found over at Her View From Home

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The changes I talk about in this article are not the only ones happening right now. Writing is becoming a much more consistent part of my life as I put the finishing touches on my first devotional about to be shipped off to the editor and publisher. I am again participating in write31days.com coming up in October. I’m scary-excited about all of this! Life is a crazy adventure and I’m so into the journey!

Blessings on your Sunday, my friends!