The Man in the Circle

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Stand in a circle?! And pray?! That is exactly what Honi the Circle Maker did. He was an ancient Israelite scholar mentioned by Josephus in the book of “Jewish Antiquities.”

Honi drew a circle and stood in it and told God that he would not move until God provided the rain that had not come that winter. Honi prayed and God brought rain.

Rulers, scholars and religious types all thought Honi had a special relationship with God. Actually, what he had was prayer. He was so closely knit to God he knew the goodness of God’s character.

Honi wasn’t satisfied with just rain. Honi’s heart ached for the people of God. He not only desired the seasonal rain, he wanted God’s rain of favor, blessing and graciousness. Honi didn’t give up, he prayed consistent and persistent, big audacious prayers, that could only be answered by God. Then he waited in expectant anticipation for God’s answer.

Audaciously bold prayers our part of our inheritance in Jesus. You will never know unless you ask and when you ask let it come from a heart that has been steeped in the truth of God’s word and promises.

Boldly go where every man, woman and child ought to go…before the throne of God, drawing circles around your prayers.

Shalom!

©2018TereseJMBelme

 

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Just be Held

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photo courtesy Pintrest.

I was scheduled to speak at a moms event at church, when I received a call from my child’s school counselor. As I stepped outside to take the call, she told me she was calling mom to mom; friend to friend. My child wasn’t in any danger nor was she in trouble, rather this was an informative call.

There was a storm brewing in our lives.

When I walked back into the event, “Just be Held” by Casting Crowns was playing. I DID NOT want to listen to this song. I sat in defiance with my arms and legs crossed, bouncing my leg up and down, up and down in anger and pain. I was upset with my friend, who was the ministry leader of the event, for choosing this song, but she was simply being obedient. I praise God now that she did choose this song, but for a very long time I couldn’t listen whenever this song was playing. 

With tears in my eyes, I was crying out to God, “Why are you allowing this?” The ‘this’ of that moment was nothing like the ‘this’ that was yet to come. The moment propelled our family into three years of a challenging struggle, that without our faith, could have destroyed us. It was a time of sifting, deliverance, and healing and the enemy took advantage, at every opportunity, to cause us to doubt Who God says he is.

I delivered my presentation and life went on. A few years later, I was cleaning up the files on my computer, and I came to my presentation. I was about to toss it in the garbage, when I very clearly heard the Holy Spirit speak to my heart, “Don’t do that.” I moved the cursor away from the garbage icon and dragged the document back to its original spot on my desktop.

This  morning as I sat and peacefully listened to “Just be Held,” I reflected back to the maelstrom of those years and the Holy Spirit showed me pictures of all the pieces He connected together. How He birthed His will in my life through those tumultuous years. How the presentation I almost threw away became my first ever published piece. 

Storms will rage around us but you have a choice. Just be held.

So when you’re on your knees and answers seem so far away
You’re not alone, stop holding on and just be held
Your world’s not falling apart, it’s falling into place
I’m on the throne, stop holding on and just be held
Just be held, just be held. Casting Crowns.

Shalom!

©2018TereseJMBelme

Shamless Audacity

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I’m reading the devotional, “Draw the Circle,” by Mark Betterson. Today’s reading is about prevailing in prayer according to Luke 11:8. As I was reading, I kept asking myself, “Does God’s word really say shameless audacity?” Sure enough, right there in the NIV translation….shameless audacity. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve read this parable and those words have not stood out to me until today.

The Greek word is ἀναίδεια and literally means shamelessness as it relates to carrying out God’s plan with unembarrassed boldness, in dignity of faith. It is the faith-led believer who isn’t concerned with human fears even when they are being accused of being extreme or excessive. 

I want to live everyday in shameless audacity. So strongly connected to my Lord and Savior Jesus that I am the bold ambassador to His kingdom that he has called me to be. Throwing human fears to the pit because Jesus is my strong shelter and His banner over me and mine is love.

Shameless and dignified because of Jesus. Persistent in prayer and he will surely give you all that you need.

Shalom!

©2018TereseJMBelme

Mizpah

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This beautiful verse jumped off the page at me and I knew I must share it. It was spoken out of tension between Laban and Jacob, as Jacob was obedient to God, who told him to go back to the home of his father.

Although Jacob was deceitful to Laban in the way he left to return to his father’s home, and Laban most likely wanted to harm Jacob, he instead extended the gracious words of Genesis 31:49. Some theorize that these words were actually a denunciation to Jacob for the way he treated Laban in parting, but only God could reveal it as a beautiful benediction.

With the sincerest of heart, I bid you mizpah!

Shalom!

©2018TereseJMBelme

 

For Simplicity Sake

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The battle never ceases. Early last year I was in a spiritual battle that literally could have meant life or death. I fought and fought until I thought I could fight no more. And, then, as the sun is faithful to rise in the east and set in the west each day, the Son delivered His miracle according to His time and His purpose. Then, suddenly, I felt I couldn’t find my way around in prayer.

This season finds me being called back into a deeper prayer time with God, re-reading some of my favorite books on prayer and adding some new. Today the Holy Spirit drew me to Joshua 6:2a.

God delivered Jericho to the Israelites before they had even begun their seven-day march around the city! The Holy Spirit quickly reminded me that I use to pray by thanking God for His answer to pray before I saw His answer materialize. This is what it looks like to be a prayer warrior and a praise warrior.

We don’t know when or how God will answer our prayers but we have faith that He will. Are you listening? Are you watching? Are you waiting in holy expectation? Don’t stop praying before your miracle is delivered.

Pray BOLD prayers and praise God for what He has already done before you witness it.

Shalom!

#restoredtoovercome #prayerwarrior #praisewarrior #backtosimplicity #2018fulcrumyear

©2018TereseJMBelme

In Between the Rains

 

fullsizeoutput_a08It is a gorgeously pre-dawn morning here in the Pacific Northwest. The tail-end of a storm is passing through and we wait in anticipation for the next storm to arrive. The gray-white, broken clouds look like floating mountains in the sky.

We are in between the rains (or storms) that sometimes bring chaos, uncertainty and even destruction but always new growth.

As the sun slowly makes its welcome on this brand new day, the Holy Spirit reminds me to praise God in all circumstances because our praises cause God to ambush the enemy on our behalf.

This morning as I watch the majestic mountains in the sky slowly drift by, I am thankful for Joel 2:25-26 and for God’s promises.

And, as I look back at this chapter in Joel I discover even more of God’s goodness and confirmation of what He is speaking to my heart this morning.

“Be glad, O children of Zion, and rejoice in the LORD your God, for he has given the early rain for your vindication; he has poured down for you abundant rain, the early and the latter rain, as before.” Joel 2:23.

Papa, thank you for the early rain of your vindication, for abundantly pouring down the early and latter rains.

May you walk in wondrous praise and worship of the Lord your God today and every day.

Shalom!

#2018fulcrumyear #restoredtoovercome #inbetweentherains

©2018TereseJMBelme

Ambushed by God

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Such a beautiful reminder to thank and praise God for his goodness, blessings and favor, especially when we aren’t feeling in a praiseworthy mood. That is the time to praise Him most, for our praises becomes a sweet fragrance of sacrifice right to His ears! Praising God causes the enemy to flee. Praising God causes us to walk in His victory that He won on the cross for you and me. When we praise God He ambushes the enemy for us and He rescues and delivers us!

Shalom!

#praisewarrior

©2018TereseJMBelme