Tuesday, November 30, 2010

"On Fire": On the 12th Day of Christmas...

Actually...

This blog has *nothing to do with that song* (LOL). It just seemed like a cute title!

Tomorrow marks December 1. The 12th month of the calendar year and also World AIDS Day. I find it fitting that the Comforter (John 14:26-AMP) would have this song on repeat in my head as I read another praise report from another "On Fire" sistah who will be jumping a broom (relatively-speaking) in a couple of weeks in Australia (much peace, love and blessings to you, sweet Miriam!).

12. Apostolic Fulfillment. That's what the number biblically-symbolizes and personally, I am excited with anticipation to hear how this month turns out...for a lot of you. I think if you pay close attention to the workings of the Father, it just may blow your minds (Ephesians 3:20) *and* lift your spirits.

Anyway, as most of you know, PURITY has been a big theme word for me this year. I went to research Scriptures that referenced 12 months. A very popular one came up. However, what caught my attention was that the Amplified Version had the word "purification" in it:

"Now when the turn of each maiden came to go in to King Ahasuerus, after the regulations for the women had been carried out for twelve months--since this was the regular period for their beauty treatments, six months with oil of myrrh and six months with sweet spices and perfumes and the things for the purifying of the women--then in this way the maiden came to the king: whatever she desired was given her to take with her from the harem into the king's palace.

In the evening she went and next day she returned into the second harem in the custody of Shaashgaz, the king's eunuch who was in charge of the concubines. She came to the king no more unless the king delighted in her and she was called for by name."---Esther 2:11-14 (AMP)

The commission is simple. As we enter into the 12th month of the calendar  year and due to the fact that "12" symbolizes apostolic fulfillment, I encourage you to pen 12 things that you would like to have purified in your life...moving forward (Philippians 3:12-15). And then commit your ways to the Lord re: instructions that *he will give you* on these matters. Psalm 37:5 assures us that when we do (commit ourselves), he will bring such things to pass.

Purify: to make pure; free from anything that debases, pollutes, adulterates, or contaminates; to free from foreign, extraneous, or objectionable elements; to free from guilt or evil; to clear or purge; to make clean for ceremonial or ritual use

It could be your sexual status. It could be your relationships. It could be your junky closet. It could be your attitude. It could be your diet. It could be your perspective. It could be your sleeping habits. It could be your fetishes. It could even be your senses. ONLY YOU KNOW. All I know is that when the Comforter introduced me to Esther 2:14 and a line in my very first "big girl poem", "I'm Single and That's All Right With Me" back in 1997 ("Esther 2:14 states that I'm to wait on my king and when he's delighted in me, he will call me by my name. My Mama didn't name me 'Needy' or 'Desperate'."), he was onto something...BIG! Elohim always is.


Psalm 37:4 says that when we delight ourselves in the Lord, he will give ourselves the desires of our heart. When we have "a high degree of pleasure or enjoyment; joy; rapture" in the KING OF KINGS (and Lord of lords-Revelation 19:16), he will give us our hearts' desires. Focusing on the King of all kings gets us what we want in this life...what we need to want, that is (wink). Hmph. Seems to me what it also does is puts us in a *pure place* of seeing our value, therefore not needing to feel the anxiety, impatience, neediness...desperation of having to go before our "human king", our future Ish, before he calls for us. And what I'm sensing is when he calls, it will be when he awakens, when the Lord awakens him (Genesis 2:18-25); when our husbands look at us and verbally acknowledge us as be the "bone of their bone and flesh of their flesh". Yeah. That was a light bulb moment right there: to know that when our own individual king calls us by name, he will call us his "Ezer Kenegdo" because he will take a pleasure and joy in us unlike any other. Because we are his and his alone.

THE PURIFICATION PROCESS PREPARES US FOR THAT.



All we have to do is focus on bringing the Lord joy and he will take care of the rest.


ALL OF IT.


"He who has clean hands and a pure heart, who has not lifted up his soul to an idol, nor sworn deceitfully. He shall receive blessing from the Lord, and righteousness from the God of his salvation.---Psalm 24:3-5 (NKJV)


Love to you, 


SRW

Friday, November 26, 2010

"On Fire": There's *Saying*...BUT Not Before *Knowing*

Ah...

The Holiday Season. OK, personally, I'm still trying to figure out why so many people (in this case,  Christians) put so much pressure on themselves during holi-days when those very same people seem to not observe holy-days...but that's another discussion for another time (and quite possibly another blog!). Either way, being that Thanksgiving took place on yesterday and some of y'all are gonna actually be bold enough to (whew!) do the whole Black Friday thing today, the Comforter (John 14:26-AMP) and I thought this would be a good time to pen this lil' gem of insight. Well, being that some of you may be quietly wishing for a "big thing in a small package" from a special someone next month.

I can't remember if I penned this before, on this blog, yet it's definitely worth repeating if I have. A "love brother" of mine (thanks James!) who's been married about 20 years was interviewing (or was it interrogating?) me a few months ago about my dating situation. Actually, I'm not in a dating situation with anyone. It's more like a praying situation and I am more than fine (and free-John 8:32!) with that; however, there was something that my love brother said that I will hold dear until my status changes from "single" to "engaged" (with a date set within 12 months of the engagement. Statistics reflect that there are some serious red flags when engagements go longer than that!)

"Shellie," he said rather matter-of-factly, "A [responsible] man is usually not going to say he loves you until he can answer the two following questions for himself: 'Do I love her enough to marry her?' and 'If so, when?" Until he knows that, there's no point in getting either one of you frustrated by saying it."

First of all, *this* is why I think women need to talk to men about men more! I mean, what woman have you ever heard give*that* kind of pearl of wisdom?!? Kinda reminds me of when my Baba (my mother's husband) once said, "Never look a bull in the eyes. When you're hurt, but hurt like a lady. When you're mad, be mad like a lady. Men don't argue, they fight and so when you all are doing all of that yelling and hollering, we get confused because we *see* a woman but we *hear* a man? We don't know what to do and so that's why we usually walk off in an argument. We don't want to hit what looks like a woman." (LOL) Yeah...you can try and challenge that if you want to but the Word (2 Timothy 3:16-17) does speak of a wife needing to have a gentle and quiet spirit (I Peter 3:3-5) Yeah Baba, flesh and blood definitely did not reveal that (Matthew 16:17). Sounds like a "parable revelation" to me!

Anyway, last week I received a confirmation of what my love brother said in the form of WebMD article entitled, "11 'Don't-Tell-The-Wife-Secrets' That All Men Keep". Some of the things on that list I'm still unpacking, but 11 was a timely winner in my book due to some of the personal emails that I continue to receive:

Secret #11: Give us an inch and we'll give you a lifetime

I was on a trip to Mexico, standing on a beach, waxing my surfboard and admiring the glistening 10-foot waves, when I decided to marry the woman who is now my wife. Sure, this was three years before I got around to popping the question. But that was when I knew.

Why? Because she'd let me go on vacation alone. Hell, she made me go. This is the most important thing a man never told you: If you let us be dumb guys, if you embrace our stupid poker night, if you encourage us to go surfing -- by ourselves -- our silly little hearts, with their manly warts and all, will embrace you forever for it.


And that's the truth.

Did you catch it? I hope you caught it.

It's "funny" because I was just talking to one of my male relatives (who is currently single) yesterday about this very thing...sorta. About how he digs his current love interest because she not only knows how to BACK. UP. but she encourages him to "do his thing". However, while not giving the kind of love that smothers and suffocates (cause that's kind of stalker-ish) is a valid point, what I really hope you took note of was what I underlined: that he knew that she was "the one" at one point and said what he knew at another. One of my favorite "daily reminder Scriptures" is I John 3:18 (NKJV), "My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue but in deed and in truth." This is from the Bible and yet so many women seem to go the magazine, Internet, "word of mouth" route when it comes to courtship (if what they are in is indeed what Abba Father would consider a courtship, which is another blog for another time as well!). Seems like so many of us just want to hear "I love you" that it's almost as if we don't care if the men 1) know what that word really means 2) mean it or 3) can back those words up...because indeed, as Adonai said, love is about deeds...and truth more than any level of lip service.

Personally, I like that the dude on surfboard took some time to know that the woman was his wife before actually saying it to her. Kind of reminds of the Scripture in the Bible when Christ said that he was leaving this earth to go and prepare a place for us. My favorite line in that particular passage? "I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also." (John 14:2-3-NKJV) I really love that "receive you unto myself" part. Hmph. Who said the Lord was not an incurable romantic? ;-)

Anyway, there's something to be said for preparation. I was just telling my prayer partner and a fellow "On Fire" gal recently that I find it really interesting (and poetically co-incidental) that some of the traits that a man who desires to be married is supposed to have starts with the prefix "pro": PRO-tect, PRO-vide...oh and looka here: PRO-pose. Yep. Before being considered a "pro", there's some *personal preparation* that must take place. Ain't it a trip (and a bit sad) that women don't seem to have a "love pro" be on the top of their "husband wish list"? Good at sex? Check. Good at work? Check. Good at loving? Oh...yeah. Never really thought about that.

Again, the Word of God says that love is about DOING. SOMETHING. Before doing it, you should know what to do. Some people say, "Don't say it if you don't mean it." Me? Especially these days, I'm more in the lane of "Don't say it if you can't do it."

Yeah. I was just telling some people yesterday that I have become amazed with what really loving myself has done for me because I too am learning how to not just "say" but "do" because of what I now *know*.  My motto right through here is that if I could procreate with myself, I'd probably marry myself (LOL). No man taught me how to love me like this; to do how, as Stephanie Mills so powerfully once sang, "Respect the power of love"...even self-love. It was something that Elohim had to reveal...and it took time. Now that I have found my "self-love niche", finally, I'm not into trying to get a man to say that he loves me. I'm into having the Father show me, daily, what love is and then have me recognize it in others...as he deems fit.

Now, don't get it twisted. More than ever, because I think I'm really getting the purpose of marital covenant down, I desire marriage. Yet, I'm in no rush to *hear* or *have* what has already manifested within because if a man is gonna tell me, "I love you", he needs to be at least where I am when it comes to my own level of self-affection and it didn't come for me overnight...I choose to extend that same mercy and grace to my Beloved as he prepares to receive what I have already learned to embrace. That's what "deed loving"...true loving is all about.

And so, this is probably my holiday prayer for all of you: that you will settle in your mind that if the Lord promised you a husband, he is true to his Word. He cannot lie (Titus1:2). However, just because you are not "hearing what you wanna hear" that doesn't mean that preparation is not taking place. AND, just because a man is not *saying* that he recognizes who you are in his life (yet) that doesn't mean that he doesn't already *know*.

Remember those two questions that James brought up. Love is patient (I Corinthians 13:4). Let your "him" answer those for himself...first.

So that when he comes to you with his "follow up" question, he won't just be *saying* marriage but *doing* it.

Because he'll already be a "Pro". At what he *knows*.

(Oh, and the "just too good" sidebar: "I Me Wed" is coming on the Lifetime Movie Network in about 45 minutes. HILARIOUS!!!)

Love to you,

SRW

Sunday, November 21, 2010

"On Fire": New Hope Road

El Berith? I really do love that dude. (LOL)

Today, I went to church to go and support a "love niece" of mine that got baptized. I smiled because 1) I decided to wear (off) white, which is something that I *rarely* do and 2) it was communion at the church. Isn't that just how the Lord is? A year to the day that the "On Fire Fast Movement" began and the day that the 21-Day "Wedding Night Fast" culminates, I'm in church, in white, taking communion. To be honest with you, once I took it all in, there was such a confidence that came as a result that when some people asked me if I wanted to be apart of the singles dinner that the church was having, I casually said, "I'm the Bride of Christ. I'm good."

And I meant it.

In my spirit, I knew that Abba Father was pleased...deep within, today, I heard: "You shall no longer be termed Forsaken, nor shall your land any more be termed Desolate; but you shall be called Hephzibah, and your land Beulah; for the Lord delights in you, and your land shall be married. For as a young man marries a virgin, so shall your sons marry you; and as the bridegroom rejoices over the bride, so shall your God rejoice over you." (Isaiah 62:4-5-NKJV)

Earlier this year, I had a shirt made with "Hephizbah" on it. It means, "My delight is in her." Beulah? That means "conjugal" or "married". I am geeked because do I sense a promotion, of sorts, is on its way? Most definitely. Yet, more than anything, I love how the parallel is made in Scripture; that just as a bridegroom rejoices over his bride (and none of us should settle for any less than that, ladies!), so shall Adonai rejoice. What a thought...to have the King of kings and Lord of lords (Revelation 17:14) rejoice over us, delight in us...be glad about us.

As I knelt during a portion of the communion service, I asked the Lord if there was anything else I was to give to you all. I kinda thought the "husband revelation" was going to be all there was to it. Hmph. I don't know why I thought that. He can always top what we think is his peak (Ephesians 3:20). So, I shouldn't have been surprised that when I opened up my Bible, it landed directly on the following verses. Now, what was the assignment during these 21 days? To get a piece of lingerie for our hope chests, right? The Amplified Version of Proverbs 16:33 tells us that even what seems like accidents are of the Lord. In the New Century Version Bible, I Peter 1:3-9 opens up with (catch it!) this title: "We Have a Living Hope":

"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. In God's great mercy he has caused us to be born again into a living hope, because Jesus Christ rose from the dead. Now we hope for the blessings God has for his children. These blessings, which cannot be destroyed or be spoiled or lose their beauty, are kept in heaven for you. God's power protects you through your faith until salvation is shown to you at the end of time. This makes you very happy, even though now for a short time different kinds of troubles may make you sad. These troubles come to prove that your faith is pure. This purity of faith is worth more than gold, which can be proved to be pure by fire but will ruin. But the purity of your faith will bring you praise and glory and honor when Jesus Christ is shown to you. You have not seen Christ, but still you love him. You cannot see him now, but you believe in him. So you are filled with a joy that cannot be explained, a joy full of glory. And you are receiving the goal of your faith—the salvation of your souls."

How rich! During this journey, we have been holding onto the fact that Romans 5:5 tells us that hope does not disappoint. As we enter into a new year, we now see that we have a living hope...a remaining hope...a persistent hope...a lasting, surviving, luxuriate, prospering, thriving hope! This is the kind of hope required to receive the blessings from our God, and the troubles (temptations, challenges) that come in the meantime? They are the "refining fire" needed to purify our faith because we know that without faith, it is impossible to please the Lord (Hebrews 11:6) yet with him, all things are possible (Matthew 19:26)!

As I read the part in bold, I couldn't help but smile in church and giggle now. Just as we have not seen Christ...but still love him and just as we cannot see him, but believe in him, I believe that we are to receive his promises---including the desire to be joined to our future covenant partners---at whatever time he deems fit (because his time is the best time). In the meantime, we must hold onto his Word that, "For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says. Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them." (Mark 11:23-24-NKJV) For some of us, this means that our prayer lives need to increase...significantly. It's not just things we ask for in general, but things we ask for when we pray that when we believe, we receive. Either way, just as you love a Christ you cannot see, I am encouraging you to love the husband that you may not see, yet, either. It's a man who discovers a woman to be a wife once he finds her...he's the one who gains favor with the Lord (Proverbs 18:22). WE MUST BE WIVES NOW.

Yet, the Lord wasn't done. There was more in this chapter that he wanted me to share. This next part is entitled, "A Call to Holy Living":

"So prepare your minds for service and have self-control. All your hope should be for the gift of grace that will be yours when Jesus Christ is shown to you. Now that you are obedient children of God do not live as you did in the past. You did not understand, so you did the evil things you wanted. But be holy in all you do, just as God, the One who called you, is holy. It is written in the Scriptures: 'You must be holy, because I am holy.'

You pray to God and call him Father, and he judges each person's work equally. So while you are here on earth, you should live with respect for God. You know that in the past you were living in a worthless way, a way passed down from the people who lived before you. But you were saved from that useless life. You were bought, not with something that ruins like gold or silver, but with the precious blood of Christ, who was like a pure and perfect lamb. Christ was chosen before the world was made, but he was shown to the world in these last times for your sake. Through Christ you believe in God, who raised Christ from the dead and gave him glory. So your faith and your hope are in God.
 

Now that your obedience to the truth has purified your souls, you can have true love for your Christian brothers and sisters. So love each other deeply with all your heart. You have been born again, and this new life did not come from something that dies, but from something that cannot die. You were born again through God's living message that continues forever. The Scripture says, 'All people are like the grass, and all their glory is like the flowers of the field. The grass dies and the flowers fall, but the word of the Lord will live forever.'— Isaiah 40:6–8 And this is the word that was preached to you."---I Peter 1:13-25 (NKJV)

Ministers-in-training, does that not sound like a promotion for you as well? Prepare (you only get ready for something when it's almost time to receive it) yourselves for service and as you do so, have self control. All of your hope should be for the gift of grace (unmerited favor). Your faith and hope should be in God, the One who makes all good and perfect gifts (James 1:17) manifest themselves. Your obedience to truth is what purifies your soul which gives you the ability to have TRUE LOVE for those around you; that is how you can LOVE DEEPLY WITH ALL OF YOUR HEART. This kind of journey shows you that we come from something that does not die but lives on throughout eternity.

We are graduating to a new level, those who have remained committed and on course. The Word couldn't be any more clear! And to top it off, although most people know that I'm pretty much a homebody, later on today, I'm going to have dinner with another "On Fire" sistah and her family. Guess where I'm traveling to? NEW HOPE ROAD. Tell me that today ain't divinely ordained! (LOL) It's not just about having hope now. It's about having a "fresh" and "unused" perspective as it directly relates to "a thing, situation, or event that is desired".

And so, as we enter into a new season (Ecclesiastes 3:1), it's my prayer that you will remain alert, aware, positive, obedient and with a spirit of anticipation. Some of us have been traveling a long time and we're about to approach an exit. I hope you take it...


Can't nothin' bad come from a place filled with signs of *new hope*.


Happy One Year!


SRW

Friday, November 19, 2010

"On Fire": HAPPY ONE YEAR: "But I *Know* God Said You're My Husband!"

"Sow for yourselves righteousness;reap in mercy; break up your fallow ground, for it is time to seek the Lord, till He comes and rains righteousness on you."---Hosea 10:12 (NKJV)


So...

Let me get the housekeeping done first:

1) Did everyone get their piece of lingerie for their hope chest yet? Shoot, for that matter, did everyone get their hope chest (Romans 5:5)...yet? Remember that was the instruction (from the Lord) while I am on the prayer fast for everyone's wedding night and the fast ends on Sunday (the One Year Anniversary of "On Fire"). Make sure to do it. It's important!

2) I almost want to be like the teacher that got on everyone's nerves for calling names out for bad grades in class. That said, I really am surprised, and a bit disappointed, as it relates to *how few* 10...Again nominations that I've received from actual "On Fire" women. Well, I'll do it like this: Thank you Lori, Jennifer, Shamine, Melissa, Nicole and Rolesha for making the time. Have you looked on the left-hand side of the blog to see how many "followers" there are? Yeah. It kind of reminds me of when I transitioned off of FB (anybody seen this link? It's...um...yeah...yet I kinda get his point, actually). It takes real effort to seek out information (Matthew 7:7-8) rather than have it spoon-fed (i.e., tagged) to you all of the time. It takes real effort to also plant a seed into a married couple's life yet for those who seek...for those who make time for these kinds of efforts, the rewards are great. They really are. I Corinthians 3:8 to the ladies who are consistent in their concerted efforts. Prayers of encouragement for those who are not. That's my "red pen through the paper" (LOL) statement for the day.

Now on to the message for this week...

If this particular "On Fire" sistah wasn't so private, I would *definitely* shout her out because she was a conduit that the Comforter (John 14:26-AMP, Luke 12:12) used to bring about a very interesting and somewhat miraculous discovery this week; one that I think will truly and *finally* set at least a couple of ministers-in-training on this blog fully free (John 8:32)! It's kind of a long (and private) story, but after getting her feelings hurt by a certain guy---one that she believes (Mark 9:23) the Lord said is her husband (bookmark that)---she found herself a bit down. I couldn't really shake it. "It" being two things:

1) That she believes this man is her husband, even though his current actions are...let's just say very contrary.

2) How many times I've heard women say that...or at the very least wonder it? And how many have apparently not been as right as they would've liked?

What gives?

Yeah. This is gonna be good. Elohim always is.

OK, this isn't really about my friend. Only she knows what the Lord told her and I will stand by her (Matthew 18:19-20) that Abba Father will lead, guide and direct (Proverbs 3:6-7) her into the next level of truth that she needs in this season of her life. What this is about is what I was led to ask her to consider: "Why don't you ask the Lord if you are his wife rather than if he is your husband?"

And here's why: Because I have heard that so much in my life (the "The Lord said that so-and-so is my husband" with sometimes several women saying it about the exact same man...sometimes at the exact same time!), I decided to go and look up the word "husband"...and "wife". Hmph. Basically, when I went to look up what "wife" meant, there was only one meaning: a woman joined in marriage to a man; a woman considered in relation to a husband; a spouse.

Oh buddy, but look up husband and...well...you'll see:

Husband: (n) a married man, especially when considered in relation to his wife; a manager; (v) to use frugally; conserve; to till; cultivate

Whew-hew! Several years ago, the Lord gave me and my prayer partner the exact same verse from two very different sources. It's the lead Scripture for this message. Certainly, without question, I believe that the Lord can tell you who your husband is; not only that he can but often does. Certainly, without question, because a lot of people confuse love with lust, many can open themselves up to having the Liar (John 8:44) deceive them into thinking that they heard from the Lord regarding a certain "man in question" (a surefire way to know that you are "hearing impaired" is if you live a conscious and habitual life of disobedience, especially sexually, when it comes to this matter). Yet, I think what causes a lot of people personal confusion (I Corinthians 14:40) is that they hear "a word from the Lord" yet they don't know what that word actually means.

I can't help but to wonder how many women believed a man was their husband and thought God meant "spouse" when what he was really saying is that he was going to use that man "to till"..."to cultivate"..."to break up fallow ground" within them...especially spiritually. Fallow ground is ground that is not in use. Ground that is inactive. Ground that is uncultivated. When something is cultivated, one of the definitions is that it's "develop[ed] or improved by education or training"; refine[d]". From that, experiences like love and friendship may be "fostered", yet doesn't that suddenly make some past journeys or current internal inquiries make so much more sense? When you believe that you hear, "So-and-so is your husband" in your spirit, it very well may be the Lord saying, "I am going to use so-and-so to cultivate you...he is going to be your teacher when it comes to a particular lesson as you enter into this next level of 'Wife School'."

That's rich right there, y'all. It really is!

And then here's the other pearl of wisdom: If you seek to know if you're someone's wife rather than if they're your husband, doesn't that put a lot of the responsibility on you to prepare (Proverbs 18:22, Proverbs 10:10-31) rather than give you the space to obsess about what "he's" doing, what "he" wants, when "he's" going to come to his senses? Yeah...flesh and blood did not reveal this for real (Matthew 16:17)!

My Mama often says that delay is not denial. I often say that oftentimes we confuse "dead" with "dormant". The Lord always says that he does things decently and in an orderly fashion (I Corinthians 14:40). My point? What's the point in planting the seed(s) of covenant into an uncultivated foundation? Shoot, that's why we're seeing the kind of "crazy marriage crops" that we are now! The Lord gave me the "theme verse" for the "On Fire Fast Movement" for two reasons. One, because wives are ministers and ministers are a flame of fire. Yet (and this is where Point 2 comes up) in order to be a refiner...one must be refined.

It really is a trip how many women were following "On Fire" when it was served up to them and how many decided to do the extra work once it was not. For you (the latter), here is your promise from the Lord as we enter into (wow!) a new year (can you believe it?!?) of this blessing from El Berith, the God of Covenant:

"And it shall come to pass in all the land,' says the Lord, 'That two-thirds in it shall be cut off and die, but one-third shall be left in it: I will bring the one-third through the fire, will refine them as silver is refined, and test them as gold is tested. They will call on My name, and I will answer them. I will say, ‘This is My people’; and each one will say, ‘The Lord is my God.’”---Zechariah 13:8-9 (NKJV)

Psalm 37:4 tells us that if we delight in the Lord and he will give us the desires of our heart, yet because Jeremiah 17:9 tells us that the heart is deceitful, yes, there must be a refining process that takes place...first.

Over the course of this year, I have been amazed by some of the developments that have taken place both personally and when it comes to some of the women who've signed up. I recall one "On Fire" woman in particular who, this time last year was like, "Girl, I'm moving to New York and you'll be married before I will." HONEY PLEASE (LOL). She's now living in the deep South and not only married but newly expecting! You can't beat God's giving...no matter how you try.

Happy One Year Anniversary, Ladies! I guess for some, you could call this your "Groundbreaking Ceremony". Yep. One ceremony at a time (LOL). Either way, here's to even more wife preparation, less husband obsessing and even more revelations. Such a beautiful (and blessed) journey this is into our own individual (Psalm 33:15) Promised Lands. Indeed.

Love to you. Big time!

SRW

Friday, November 12, 2010

"On Fire": The EXCEPTION. Not the RULE.

"For this is the will of God, that you should be consecrated (separated and set apart for pure and holy living): that you should abstain and shrink from all sexual vice, that each one of you should know how to possess (control, manage) his own body in consecration (purity, separated from things profane) and honor, not [to be used] in the passion of lust like the heathen, who are ignorant of the true God and have no knowledge of His will, that no man transgress and overreach his brother and defraud him in this matter or defraud his brother in business. For the Lord is an avenger in all these things, as we have already warned you solemnly and told you plainly. For God has not called us to impurity but to consecration [to dedicate ourselves to the most thorough purity]. Therefore whoever disregards (sets aside and rejects this) disregards not man but God, Whose [very] Spirit [Whom] He gives to you is holy (chaste, pure). But concerning brotherly love [for all other Christians], you have no need to have anyone write you, for you yourselves have been [personally] taught by God to love one another."---I Thessalonians 4:3-9 (AMP)


Consecration: to make or declare sacred or holy; sanctify; to dedicate (one's life, time, etc) to a specific purpose

So...

Speaking of consecration, did you get your lingerie goodie for your hope chest (Romans 5:5) yet? Yep, I said it! Even within the context of this message. ON. PURPOSE.

This week, when it comes to news that's been released, I've really had to take a breath/break and exhale a bit. Like today, for example, I read an article about how Amazon.com actually published a book that's (hope you're sitting down) a guide to pedophilia. YEP. And what's really scary is that 1) they basically defended it on the basis of free speech and 2) that it became a best-seller! The current stats on molestation? 1 in 4 girls will be molested by 18 and roughly 1 in 8 boys. And, these are of reported cases.  Remember the Scripture found in Malachi 2:15? Indeed Elohim established marital covenant with one of the main purposes/reasons being that godly offspring would be the end result.
Not too long ago, I was talking to someone about how I wish people would really seek the Lord FIRST before having children, even in marriage. They were like, "I mean, the Bible says 'Be fruitful and multiply' (Genesis 1:28)." They're right. However, I'm starting to wonder more and more if people are getting the "BE FRUITFUL" (Galatians 5:22-23) part down, first! 

And then, as if that was not enough, The Washington Post published in article citing that as much as 72% of black babies are born to single mothers. 72%. Well and above over half. CHILDREN NEED FATHERS. However, as I was checking out one site's discussion on the matter, it amazed me that the following brainstorming questions were asked re: how to stop the pandemic: Should we stop glorifying the hip-hop culture? Should we stop welfare?Should we choose better partners? Oh yeah...and this one was a real doozy: SHOULD WE GIVE UP SEX ENTIRELY?

Um, how about SHOULD WE GET MARRIED?!?

The foolishness of the world (I Corinthians 3:19). Amazing how much, in man's ignorance and presumption, one is oh so quick to find any kind of solution...other than what should be the obvious one: the godly one.

And so, I just want you to know...I want to assure you, that when the Word says that "wide is the gate to destruction" (Matthew 7:13), that although this is often used in re: to heaven vs. hell, I am more than certain that it can even be applied to the quality of life that people have here. As I was praying for our wedding nights, one of the things that the Comforter (John 14:26-AMP) told me is that "You are the exception, not the rule." Not just me, but all who are taking this "On Fire Fast Movement" (eh hem) seriously. Elohim is using this time to fashion us to be true Ezer Kenegdos...true helpmeets...true lifesavers for the one that was created just for us. The "rule" is what everyone else is doing and it's the reason why we have stats like the one presented above and utterly despicable books like the one on pedophilia. The "exception" says "I am not conforming to what others do"; "I am willing to live in direct opposition to the popular opinions of what the world thinks"; "I don't mind being criticized for being distinct, extraordinary, peculiar and unusual. Even if it means people choose to see me as abnormal or strange."

Just today, a spiritual sistah (with a growing marriage ministry of her own, by the way) put me on to a guy by the name of Mark Gungor. Being that I am praying for our "coming together as one for the first time" nights, I found what he said about the Song of Solomon woman to be pretty interesting. If you really pay attention to how she was described, her body didn't really seem *perfect* but to her Beloved, still, she was *exceptional*. I'm willing to bet that a big part of that was because of the *kind of woman* that she was more than what she looked like.

As we enter into another Sabbath (HALLELUJAH!), this is my desire for us all. That we will not get discouraged. That we will know that all of the good steps of a (wo)man are ordered (Psalm 37:23). That our labor is never in vain. And that the El Berith, the God of Covenant, is working...incessantly and diligently...to make us the kinds of wives that his sons, his princes, need. Not only need, but require.

Women who break the rules...to be exceptional.

Women who are willing to remain in a constant state of consecration to do it.

Love to you,

SRW 

Saturday, November 6, 2010

"On Fire": A Homework Assignment

OK,

I guess charge it to all of the praying (LOL), cause here I am again! This will be really brief, though.

A few years ago, I watched a documentary on marriage called, "51 Birch Street". It's about...actually, it's too multi-layered to get into. However, I do like how the website that promotes the film starts off with, "Do you really know your parents?" That's a pretty good teaser into the entire dynamic. ;-)

Anyway, I can't recall, other than the fasting, if I've ever been led to give a homework assignment. Let's call this a first! This morning, I saw that Hulu.com has the film available for free. It takes about one hour and 30 minutes to view yet, *please make some time*. Let me tell it, this addresses lack of intimacy and communication, generational curses, settling, fear, resentment, routine...and a whole lot of other things (just wait til you get to know the dude's mama...she was gangsta-LOL).

Here's the (must copy and paste) link:

http://www.hulu.com/watch/186560/51-birch-street 

Feel free to comment, if you'd like, once you get a chance.

The Lord really is preparing us, y'all. He's soooooo good.

SRW

Friday, November 5, 2010

"On Fire": Pray for a KING

I know, right?

Didn't I *just* pen a note a couple of days ago?!? Indeed, I did. Woke up this morning with this semi-brief message on my mind, though.

OK, as the "signs and wonders" child that my mother says that I am, you know that I am totally stoked (LOL) that our one-year anniversary falls into this month and that biblically, "12" symbolizes "apostolic fulfillment", right? And yeah, some of y'all can *go in* right there because apostolic fulfillment is the full manifestation of the characteristics of an apostle. Matthew 10:8 (NKJV) says that when Christ sent the disciples (apostles) out, his instructions were "Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons." I've read some of the concerns that have been on you all's hearts. I am encouraged to encourage you to claim this power for yourself (John 8:31). When Elohim is within us, there is nothing that is too hard (I John 4:4). ABSOLUTELY NOTHING.

Yet, that is not the real purpose for this message. As I am interceding for you all's wedding nights, I am led to implore you to pray for a specific thing as well. I'm not sure when it was but some months ago, the Comforter (John 14:26-AMP) led me to a particular verse in Scripture as it relates to my own Beloved:

"The Lord can control a king's mind as he controls a river; he can direct it as he pleases."---Proverbs 21:1 (NCV)

Keeping this posted up in my bedroom has done three things: 1) it has served as a good dose of "emotional anesthesia" when I am tempted to freak out about the Lord's timing and methodology; 2) it reminds me of the kind of man I am worthy of: A KING and 3) it "reins me in" when I'm tempted to try and manipulate a situation to go the way I deem fit. Because really, since the Lord can control a king's mind, why don't I just move out of the way and let God be God, totally, in my circumstance?

And so, yes, it is also my prayer that you will take it upon yourself to pray for that 1) you will allow the Lord to bring a king into your life and 2) that you will truly trust that El Berith, the God of Covenant, has your journey TOTALLY under his control. A king is a "male sovereign". A king serves as a "chief authority". A king  (and I LOVE this!) is "a person, animal, or thing considered as the best or most important of its kind". A king is the best and most important kind of man (Ish, husband) and because Proverbs 12:4 tells us that "An excellent wife is the crown of her husband", I'm led to believe that a godly woman deserves no less than a man of true spiritual royalty. DON'T. SETTLE. FOR. LESS. 

Oh! Speaking of kings, if you're a Mommy, or desire to be the mother of a son someday, this article is worth checking out in re: to preparing young men to be kings. Big sistahs have to help out the little sistahs: "How to Raise The Men We'd Want to Marry".

 Is that it? Yep. Gotta lotta writing, praying and pondering to do today and so I must be going. However, I hope this provided some of you with some additional comfort and others some real clarity.  

You ain't "got this". God does.   

Trust him. After all, he is the KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS: 

"And He has on His robe and on His thigh a name written: KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS."---Revelation 19:16 (NKJV)


SRW

Monday, November 1, 2010

"On Fire": Wedding Night Prayers

Yeah. Well.

Not sure what it is but some of R. Kelly's handiwork has been all up in my head space as of late (if you're on my devotional list and you read "Mass Confusion...Eliminated" then you know what I'm talking about). Not entire songs...just liners. One that has been "ringing around" for a couple of days now is from the song, "It Seems Like You're Ready". The liner? "I'd like to know am I the one you're preparing for?"

Yeah. Well...again.

A little bit of logic sprinkled with some good ole' common sense tells me that he probably wasn't writing this song for his wife (LOL) and to be honest with you---and y'all know I'm the one to be pretty darn forthright---upon my introduction to this song, many, many moons ago, I wasn't thinking about my future Beloved, either. Matter of fact (gasp!), I gave my conscious virginity away to this very tune.

Yet a funny (ironic, I mean) thing happened when I thought about it this past time. My past didn't resonate. Not one bit. I didn't get that tingling feeling that I used to, almost every time, in times past, when I thought about my first. Another matter of fact? I didn't even think about him, in relation to it, until just now. Hmph.

What I did think about was the fact that I didn't prepare for pornea (Greek for "fornication"). Not one bit. Now that I think about it, when I gave my virginity to "him", we obviously didn't do much preparing at all because those of you who have read "Inside of Me" know that when it came time to "do the deed", it was in his Mama's house in his Mama's bed while his little sister was asleep in the next room. Whew! DIS.RE.SPECT.FUL. And, if you continue to read the book, you will notice that I didn't really prepare for the rest of dem jokers, er, men (LOL), either. A memoir of drama would not have been penned if that had been the case.

I think hard. I make no apologies for it and so to be honest with you, as I'm "penning, processing and pondering" (Proverbs 4:26) all of this, I'm kinda trippin' that the song that I would "lose it to" is the one that is causing me to further prepare for "yahasey min" (Hebrew for "sexual relations"). Amazin' ain't it? Sometimes you just don't see how preparation will come.Or when. I think we need to pray about preparing for preparation. How about you? (LOL)

Indeed, Isaiah 42:9 (NKJV) tells us, "Behold, the former things have come to pass, and new things I declare; before they spring forth, I tell you of them." I can't really explain it, yet it's almost as if my Beloved was channeling (for lack of a better word) me through Mr. Kelly: "Shellie, are you preparing for me? I don't care about your past. I'm interested in the right here and right now. Are you allowing the Lord to put your human trinity---your mind, body and spirit---into 'proper condition and readiness'? Are you honestly making yourself 'adaptable' so that 'adjustments' can be made? As one of my love brothers (hey Shannon!) says in one of his songs, are you being too emotional to be 'coachable'?" (LOL) Ladies, now I must redirect the line of questioning: Are you looking at this season as a time of "nothingness" or are you taking this blog for what it is: a time to "develop", to "fix", to "perfect" and "settle" yourself? To allow the Master Matchmaker, our Abba Father, to get you into position to be presented (Genesis 2:22) Indeed, are you preparing for the one that the Lord had in mind for you...all along?

As I prayed about how this related to you all specifically, the Comforter (John 14:26-AMP) led me to a site that I didn't see coming (the Lord *did* say that he would do exceedingly above all that we can ask or think...he always does!-Ephesians 3:20). It was (I know, right?) Wedding Night Dot Com. Yep. It's just what you might think it would be: a website that prepares people for their wedding night. By no means was I under the impression that it's a "Christian website" yet, I really did appreciate them taking to time to even publish an article entitled,"6 Reasons to Wait Until Your Wedding Night" with one of the reasons being that you will have no regrets. You will have no regrets.


The Lord is preparing me, preparing us all if we take our preparation time seriously, to have a NEW NIGHT with our man, our Ish, our covenant partner...forever...filled with *no regrets*. I love my Father and how he works in my life. He would actually allow the very song that I sinfully gave my virginity away to, to remind me that "going all the way" the next time was going to be a very different experience. Then he led me to a website that reminded me that because I am preparing, even now, my wedding night will be one that 1) is not difficult; 2) will be personally rewarding; 3) I won't regret; 4) I won't have pressure attached to; 5) won't have a pregnancy scare involved (a *huge* first for me!); 6) will be worth it because we waited.


Do you recall when the Lord instructed us all to get a hope chest? DO YOU HAVE YOURS? If not, how can the Father proceed with the next step when you are not adhering to the last one(s), he's given? GET ONE. If you already do, over the next couple of weeks (or paychecks), treat yourself to a piece of honeymoon lingerie. A pair of panties that say "Bride" on them. Or a teddy. Or some fishnet stockings. A slip. Some slippers. As the Lord is preparing our souls, spiritually, for giving ourselves to our husbands, celebrate your walk in faith (Hebrews 11:1) by getting something to decorate the fearfully and wonderfully (Psalm 139:14) canvas known as your body. One of the main things that the Lord will use to bless your husband...especially.


Yeah. It's all making sense now. Like stepping out of the boat and walking on the water (LOL)! I get why the Lord wanted me to pen this...today. "On Fire" ladies, we will be ONE-YEAR-OLD on 11-21-10. For the next 21 days, I am going to intercede on you all's behalf for this one thing and this one thing only: that you will have an absolutely amazing, awesome, special, refreshed, *renewed*, sacred, wondrous and magnificent wedding night. Yep. That's all I'm being led to pray about/for. I think it's because since the El Berith, the God of Covenant, thinks so highly of the marriage bed (you might want to check out this link some time too for additional preparatory information...an ounce of prevention, right?), we cannot forget that it is a major staple in a marriage (Hebrews 13:4, I Corinthians 7:1-6).


And so, because I will be going to the Father about thwarting off the past sins that can tend to easily beset (Hebrews 12:1) those of us who didn't wait to give our virginity away to the one who is truly worthy (cause your mind can be renewed but you are only a virgin one time...let the truth [John 8:32] about *that* set you free from lying to your future covenant partner, please!) AND to calm down the anxiety (Philippians 4:6-7) of those who have remained a virgin and/or those who have not had intercourse but need their PURENESS rejuvenated (Psalm 51:10), if you have a specific request/fear/concern that you would like the two of us to "touch and agree" on (Matthew 18:19-20), in confidence, please feel free to drop me an email at missnosipho@gmail.com.

In the meantime, get your little lingerie item to place into your hope chest, again as your personal act of faith. I will be praying for you because I know that hope does not disappoint (Romans 5:5).

And my future Beloved, here's to the Lord sending up some kind of "spiritual smoke signal" (LOL) to you that the answer would be a resounding "yes". YOU ARE THE ONE THAT I'M PREPARING FOR. I've got a hope chest full of goodies and a heart full of expectancy to prove it!


See you (in God's time) soon.

SRW