Narcissism in the Pulpit

I am deeply convinced that the article below gets right to the root of why so many churches today are closing down, attendance is at an all-time low and thousands are taking part in a historical exodus away from Babylon and towards a New Jerusalem. Narcissistic church leaders and pastors in particular are deceiving and manipulating those who are part of a church. Indeed, these individuals are able to cast a kind of spell on their “victims” to the point where one can tell that all is not right with that leader and those who have chosen to buy into his/her propaganda, but they feel their hands are tied and there is not a whole load they can do about it. As if in a spell, their heart is telling them to separate themselves from what is going on but their feet won’t move. Such is the pressure and the pull of the fleshly Narcissistic Spirit, one can do little to overcome it once ensnared in its web.

I strongly feel God is liberating many from this web of deception, control and utter worship of the instruments God uses to achieve his purposes instead of worshipping the God who chose them and led them to a place where they could serve others. Note I use the word serve and not “lead” others. The only one that should be leading us anywhere is the Spirit of Jesus Christ himself. Anything else is idolatry and a stench in God’s nostrils.

It is a very long article but accurate, in-depth, and utterly revealing. It took me years to see some of the things which are so clearly explained in this article, and I wish someone had put it right in front of me at the time when I was in the midst of what can only be described as the battle of all spiritual battles within me, where part of me was being seduced by the brilliance, charisma, appeal and promises of bigger and greater things which the Narcissistic Spirit has in abundance, and the other part of me, the spiritual part of me was dying as it felt trapped, controlled, deceived, annihilated, lied to, used and simply denied of all that God has in store for my spiritual development and that of His Church.

The time for God to judge and deal with all Narcissist leaders in His Church is now upon us. Dead works and hyped-up marketing and growth techniques will be shown as dead works and ultimately, the Lord will say: “Depart from me, for I never knew you”.

Narcissism in the Pulpit.

Resting on the Floor of Your Wilderness

SCH Contributor Kevin Adams shares his testimony of the difficult times he has faced, which God used to draw him to the place of complete reliance on Him.

via Resting on the Floor of Your Wilderness.

I’ll crack open hidden understanding. Be wise as serpents!

This is a prophetic message given recently by Priscilla Van Sutphin (http://ft111.com/priscilla.htm) which I strongly feel links beatifully with my last two posts. I only read this a minute ago but I feel that Priscilla and I are always on a similar wavelength though her ability to see beyond what we see is far, far greater and much less clattered than mine. I hope the hidden gems this message contains reveal themselves to you as clearly as they did when I read it. Be blessed.

“I’ll Crack Open Hidden Understanding” 
10/20/13 

“I’m going to crack open the hidden scrolls that you and many others of my children can understand the unfolding of all that is before you. Many want to know truth but many still arrogantly think they understand it all. I WILL do amazing things to help My bride because of the tremendous wickedness that surrounds you.
Remember there are more of My armies than there are of their’s. Many of you will have your eyes opened to see what is going on spiritually in the unseeable realms. Manifest glory is increasing in the earth. This is what causes tremors in all realms! The mountains melt like wax at the presence of the Lord of Hosts! Sounds of darkness stirring and earth trembling is now more common.
Shout from the rooftops what you hear in your ear! Shout it out on the air waves, on radio waves, in the church and outside the church walls.
Trumpets are sounding in the unseen realm, announcing the hour. I WILL OPEN BLIND EYES! I WILL! I WILL UNSTOP THE EARS WHO DON’T WANT TO HEAR! Scales will fall off eyes that have been blinded by the enemy! Veils of confusion and veils of deception and delusion will be torn off of people that will startle them to realize they have been wrong.
Conviction will fall on barren hearts, angry hearts, indifferent hearts, and they will see and perceive what they could not before! Look to My Word for I have many puzzles I will unravel for those with hearts & eyes to see! Ask and you shall receive of the hidden Manna! Come while there is yet time to come away. Be wise as serpents, innocent as doves in your dealings with men.
Come to Me when your heart is weighed down! I will help you put things in perspective!”

HE will slay the monster of the sea (the gliding, coiling serpent)

On watching the news this morning yet again I feel like I have had a nudge from God to pay attention to what is going on all around us currently in the world.  Believe me, I have had utter aversion towards anything to do with current affairs and the news all my life.  From a young age, I suffered daily nightmares about terrible earthquakes, and although I was born in a country, Spain, which as far as I am aware has not suffered, at least during my lifetime, any significant earthquakes, the mere vividness of my dreams made me shake to the core with fear and trembling at the prospect of ever experiencing such a terrifying circumstance.  Now, the nightmares about earthquakes have become fewer and far between (although they are equally terrifying and at a devastating scale when they come) and have been replaced by nightmares of engulfing tsunamis which leave behind equal death and devastation. Go figure! My parents, even into my adulthood years whilst I was still living at home, tried to instil in me a sense of duty to keep up with the papers, the daily news and to try to have a general understanding of current affairs, to be aware of what is going on not just in my own little bubble but at a larger scale in order to be able to have a grown up conversation and to feel able to mix in different circles and bring something to the table.

The more they went on about me reading the papers, the bigger my aversion towards them grew. Then I moved to the UK and after marrying my English husband, just when I thought I left behind the days of utter guilt for being such an ignorant individual who refuses to be concerned with the ills of the world, my in-laws began to pick up where my parents left off. That didn’t work either!

Interestingly, in the last few years as my faith in Jesus Christ has grown deeper, I find myself miraculously drawn to anything to do with current affairs, news, natural disasters and so on.  I know God brought this about because human effort failed before and no one has been able to make me do something I had such a clear aversion to. Now, when God puts something in your heart that no living soul has been able to imprint, you can bet your bottom dollar there is a clear purpose in it, a use, a function, a fruit that is to be nurtured, grown and harvested at the end of that process.

It is for this reason that when I felt the Lord’s nudge this morning to pay attention to the news again today, I knew better than to ignore it.  As I turned onto SKY news, I was struck by the image below of a giant serpent-like creature called an oarfish which has only recently washed ashore on a beach in California. In fact, another one washed ashore on another Californian beach I believe only days later. These hideous and hellish looking creatures do resemble serpents and we all know or should know what the serpent represents in Biblical terms.  Faced with that, I begun to think to myself: Can you imagine if on reading my daily portion of Scripture today, there is a mention of a serpent or something that may give me a spiritual dimension as to what it all means? What are the chances and if so, what is God trying to say to me, to us, to the whole world, if anything?

Rare: This snakelike oarfish measuring nearly 14 feet long was found on a beach in Southern California on October 18. Speculation is rife over whether the sightings prelude an earthquake

Together with the image shown on the news was given the commentary that many in the California area are terrified, because they see this oarfish coming to land as a sign that these creatures are fleeing from something they see coming, they sense is looming.  Whilst you may be laughing your head off at this point, know that similar occurrences took place  months prior to the Japan tsunami and earthquake of 2011. Now, we all know how prone California is to earthquakes and seismic activity be it at land or at sea, so then I begin to sense that this is indeed no laughing matter but more like a “sign”, like the signs and wonders God spoke off being so prevalent in the last days.

I turn off the TV and sit at my desk and open my bible where I left off yesterday and guess what?

Isaiah 27, 1

27 In that day, the Lord will punish with his sword—     his fierce, great and powerful sword— Leviathan the gliding serpent,     Leviathan the coiling serpent; he will slay the monster of the sea.

Some people look to the future, to scientific advance, to progress, to man ultimately trying to be God and finding a solution to all our problems. Truth is we will never be able to do this; we are human and imperfect and last time I looked, none of the humans I know were anywhere remotely near becoming perfect, faultless, flawless beings, starting with Moi. Yes, we find cures to diseases and we come up with awe-inspiring technological advances but parallel to all that progress is the sin that tails right behind us all creating a whole load of new challenges brought about by our own pride, foolishness and inability to learn from our mistakes. So you see, what we manage to achieve on the one hand with our smugness, we immediately render ineffective by the whole bundle of new problems we immediately have to face, having only just solved the previous ones, and more often that not these problems are the result of our own stupidity and inability to act responsibly towards our own selves, each other and the world around us.

But, fear not, for there is hope. We know that no matter how much tragedy or disaster comes upon us, and this is the message one has to walk away with from all of this, is that God is ultimately in charge of it all. That serpent-like fish that washed ashore may well be a warning of things to come in the natural realm, but we do well to hold onto God’s promise of what is also to come in the Spiritual realm: God will eventually kill “the serpent” or more poignantly to the news just reported, He will slay the monster of the sea.

Whether you believe in Him or not, Christ will ultimately reign victorious and the snake will be trampled upon and will exist no more, so don’t put your hope in your ability to run fast to beat the snake, the earthquake or the tsunami. Put your trust in the one that DOES HAVE all the answers, Christ risen, who overcame even death.  He sits victorious on his throne knowing how to get through it all, knowing that God is so much bigger and greater than any disaster or fear. Hold on to HIM in these uncertain times we live in, cling to Him for dear life. Only He will provide you with the internal peace, wisdom, grace and fortitude to face what the days ahead hold for all of us, whatever that may look like.

I leave you with an image which beautifully captures what God’s promise is to us regarding the serpent’s threats and its constant assailing and putting us down so that we cease in our striving to follow Christ.

Incredible: An 18-foot-long oarfish found dead in the water off Catalina Island near Los Angeles

“The earth dries up and withers”. Is God’s word fiction or the reality unfolding in front of our very eyes?

I have often been told that my outlook on everything is rather pessimistic and yes, that is true to some extent. I do however strongly feel that one has to have a certain pessimism built-in within them if they are ever going to have a genuine fear of the Lord, which we know from the Scriptures IS the beginning of wisdom. I think it is important in all areas of life to not be over pessimistic but neither over optimistic. I like to be real; I like to keep it real and I like to be realistic.

I know that our Heavenly Father is Love but I also keep close to my heart and spirit the certainty that God is a Just God in equal measure, a loving Father and specially the only ONE who knows it all, despite the fact that so many who are seen as men and women of God today think they too know it all. God alone can see the end from the beginning and the purpose in everything, the true “bigger picture”.

What we do know for sure, for those of us who accept the Bible as God-inspired and as the revelation of who Jesus is and why He came to the world and why He will come again, is the fact that there will be a day of Judgement. Many Christians shake in disapproval and with righteous anger when they hear such statement mentioned, because to them God is above all else love, and talking about judgement is something which in their eyes is non-sensical seeing as Christ has already paid the price for our sin on the cross and therefore what would be the need or the point of God judging men on that final day or even today? Personally, I feel that this type of Christian attitude does away with the need for ongoing repentance, contrition and the determination to go through a process of sanctification until the day we die; all absolutley vital and key steps in becoming more and more like Christ, which is ultimately what one would hope all Christians are striving for, even when we know we will never be like Him, not really. It is an attitude that brings forward countless of new converts, but the question we need to be asking ourselves at that point is: what are they really converting to seeing as the concept of God’s judgement and our need for repentance and humility are so paramount, clear and prevalent throughout the Scriptures?

Though we don’t know when the end will come, we know without a doubt that it WILL come and we have a pretty good description of what will happen when it does, both in the Old and the New testament. Listen for example to this fragment in the book of Isaiah (Isaiah 24, 4-13) and ponder afterwards whether you see any similarities with what is going on in the world today:

The earth dries up and withers,
the world languishes and withers,
the heavens languish with the earth.
5 The earth is defiled by its people;
they have disobeyed the laws,
violated the statutes
and broken the everlasting covenant.
6 Therefore a curse consumes the earth;
its people must bear their guilt.
Therefore earth’s inhabitants are burned up,
and very few are left.
7 The new wine dries up and the vine withers;
all the merrymakers groan.
8 The joyful timbrels are stilled,
the noise of the revelers has stopped,
the joyful harp is silent.
9 No longer do they drink wine with a song;
the beer is bitter to its drinkers.
10 The ruined city lies desolate;
the entrance to every house is barred.
11 In the streets they cry out for wine;
all joy turns to gloom,
all joyful sounds are banished from the earth.
12 The city is left in ruins,
its gate is battered to pieces.
13 So will it be on the earth
and among the nations,
as when an olive tree is beaten,
or as when gleanings are left after the grape harvest.

A view from the International Space Station shows bushfire smoke clouds over southern Australia.

As I was reading these words this morning, the images of the fires currently devastating large areas of Australia and also recently in various States on North America immediately came into my mind. Fires of uncontrollable scale are raging, more and more landscapes are becoming desolate. “Earth’s inhabitants are burned up…” we read in Isaiah. It all seems far too immediate and current already! We are getting to the end of October by which time the weather in the UK has already turned nasty weeks prior, and yet this year we are enjoying spring-like weather at the moment. Temperatures are so much milder (17 degrees forecast for tomorrow) and you do get the sense as you are out and about that indeed the whole earth seems to be warming up at an alarming rate.

Lines of scorched earth and huge smoke plumes from wild fires in Australia were visible from the International Space Station on January 8, 2013. Credit: NASA/Chris Hadfield

Only today as I went out for a walk with my dog, I had to contend with fighting off wasps which themselves appeared disorientated and bewildered as the autumnal landscape which they are not familiar with surrounded them. Little did they know, it was them who did not belong in such a landscape at such a time and not the other way around. I think there is a hidden message in that somewhere, but it is not coming to me right now. I will ponder on that a bit later perhaps!

I am not deliberately trying to be a scaremonger, far from it, but one cannot deny that there is a general sense of inevitability and bewilderment amongst earth’s inhabitants today. We realise we have neglected our duty and responsibility of looking after our planet and everything that is in it: our marriages, our lifestyles, our children, our relationships, our morals or lack of, and yet we continue doing “business as usual” instead of actually trying to either repent and change our ways, instead of humbling ourselves and finally recognising that neither we are God nor will we ever be, instead of putting aside our differences and concentrating on what we have in common: our humanity and those things which are vital to our existence: our planet and everything that lives in it.

Christians, the people of God, above anyone else should lead by example by coming alongside each other in unity to encourage and bless each other as we seek to do God’s will, and yet, disunity, pride and a desperate need to stamp our own identity and validity above anyone else within the Christian world is only too apparent when one ponders on the dozens of different Christian denominations and church identities we see all around us. We brag about how good we have it in our own church, how our church’s vision is the one that clearly capture’s God’s heart for His people, belittling in this manner what any other Christian individual or group may be doing be it in their community, for each other or in the world, instead of joining forces as the Body of Christ should to compliment and enhance what each other is doing. The problem with that is the results would no longer point to how amazing WE are, but to the kind of God we claim we serve.

I also see Isaiah’s prophetic words coming to pass not only in the natural world but much more so in the spiritual realm, amongst all Christians, as a scattering of God’s people of biblical proportions is taking place in the world today. Whilst in times past during so called “revivals” Christians were known for their gatherings together and their fight for a common cause and purpose, there is today a great sense of so many individuals being scattered outside of the “Structural” and “Institutional” fold, individuals who are searching for the one and true God whose temple is not made with human hands. These people who are being scattered are also experiencing a tremendous and unrelenting time of draught but the difference is that their draught results from God’s mercy and not his judgement, as He seeks to remove from us anything or anyone who is not from HIM or who deviates us from our true purpose in Christ, anything or anyone who is stopping us from following HIM and from doing HIS will.

I think I should finish with another portion of Scripture which pretty much sums up what I am trying to say here:

Isaiah 26, 7-11

7The path of the righteous is level;
you, the Upright One, make the way of the righteous smooth.
8 Yes, Lord, walking in the way of your laws,[a]
we wait for you;
your name and renown
are the desire of our hearts.
9 My soul yearns for you in the night;
in the morning my spirit longs for you.
When your judgments come upon the earth,
the people of the world learn righteousness.
10 But when grace is shown to the wicked,
they do not learn righteousness;
even in a land of uprightness they go on doing evil
and do not regard the majesty of the Lord.
11 Lord, your hand is lifted high,
but they do not see it.
Let them see your zeal for your people and be put to shame;
let the fire reserved for your enemies consume them.

Conflict in Syria: Just another war or the catalyst that will render the face of this earth unrecognisable?

I have been following Sermonindex.com now for many years. I find that the majority of sermons put on there are God inspired and absolutely led by the Holy Spirit. In these last few years going through the transition from being an integral part of a church and the church system to going it “alone”, Sermonindex together with the teaching of certain godly men in the United States has provided me with a source of great encouragement, perspective, Godliness and it has in effect become the rudder which steers me back into the right path when external, evil influences threaten with throwing me off course.

Sermon Index last weekend held a livestream conference entitled “Sleeping Virgins and the soon coming of Christ” which I believe carries great prophetic weight and importance not only for Christians but for every person on planet earth.

Today I listened to one of the brief talks given  during this conference by a man I have never heard of before called Dean Odle. He speaks of God’s judgement coming to America which is something I have also been talking about much on my own blog on various posts such as the one you can find on this link. http://anewcreation33.wordpress.com/2012/10/30/3692/

I have been heavily burdened lately with the Syria crisis and where all this is leading to. In my spirit I have strongly felt that this is not just yet another conflict which is going to divide the world’s opinion about whether we have a responsibility to act when faced with evil and injustice.  This is going to be a conflict which in itself will become the catalyst to much greater sources of pain, injustice and evil taking place on this earth. There is a sense in my spirit of helplessness as the days go by and events of such magnitude are beginning to unfold and there is nothing anyone can do any more. The dice has been cast, we have chosen whom we will serve and there is no going back. The only thing for it is to go down on our knees, repent and pray for God’s mercy on our souls, pray for courage as we walk through the valley of the shadow of death, as we witness evil, hatred and hurt all around us, pray for guidance and anointing to be able to reach those who have not accepted Jesus into their hearts yet.

My spirit, as much as I hate to admit it and as much as admitting this fills me with fear and trembling, my spirit bears witness to what this man Dean shares in this talk. I urge you to at least listen to it. If your spirit does not bear witness to what he is sharing, please pray for all those suffering in the Syrian conflict, for the innocent victims of conflict in the Middle East and for God to show each and every one of us how to best be the hands and feet of Jesus to all those who are suffering so much directly and indirectly as a result of wars, injustice and natural disasters in the world.

Thank you.

My best birthday present to date has been the GIFT of Awareness.

Today I am 44 years old.  Never before have I felt so comfortable in my own skin, so happy to walk in my own shoes, so free to be who I am called to be and to exist in the manner that I was fearfully and wonderfully made to exist.

Of all the presents I have ever received none come even close to the magnitude and beauty that the gift of awareness has meant in my life and that of those who share in this life alongside me.

To me a birthday is not an annual occurrence but a daily one, for each day is a fresh and new opportunity to share in God’s grace, to be showered in his blessings and to find new mercies in Him, and most importantly to be reborn and bathed in His Spirit . I want to spend the rest of my life cultivating a heart that is aware and grateful for all the good things and for the meaning, purpose and reason behind the bad things too.

Today on my 44th birthday I am GRATEFUL:

  • GRATEFUL for the DAILY AWARENESS that we have the opportunity to start afresh each day, for the bad to be washed away through Christ’s redemptive nature and for the new to take hold and meaning.
  • GRATEFUL for the DAILY  AWARENESS that up to this point it is the grace of God and his mercy that have sustained my faith, my marriage, my parenting, my children, my health, my home, our business, our extended families, our friends and those spiritual lighthouses who help us to keep perspective and a righteous frame in our daily walk.
  • GRATEFUL for the DAILY AWARENESS that miracles are not only found in the unexpected, extraordinary, unexplainable, or grandiose occurrences, but much more so in the little details of our existence and that of our environment which we don’t take any notice of because we take these things for granted. There is a miracle in the new rose bud that is about to open, the dove that flies over my garden as I am praying, the weird and wonderful cloud formations that keep me forever wondering, the laughter of a friend who is able to laugh and appreciate friendship despite his personal challenges and struggles, the fight within of a cancer sufferer who refuses to give up and battles with all they have until the power of determination overcomes the power of the illness.  There is a miracle in the Autistic child that can’t make heads or tails of why he feels the way he does but is able to say “Mum, I love you and what am I going to do when you are no longer here with me?”. There is a miracle in the husband who one day fights with the frustration of being let down by his wife and the next renews his affections and love by giving her a gift.
  • GRATEFUL for the DAILY AWARENESS that much will be asked of those of us to whom much has been given and alongside that thought the awareness that I own nothing really but I am a steward to much and therefore have a responsibility to myself, God and others to look after those things and people who have been entrusted under my care; to be generous with them and compassionate.
  • GRATEFUL for the DAILY AWARENESS that millions suffer everyday as they lack the most basic of needs and rights, and the painful DAILY awareness that their joy always manifests within them in equal measure to and despite their pain. What is our excuse for complaining about our own predicaments? How dare we?
  • GRATEFUL for the DAILY AWARENESS that I am here today but may no longer be here tomorrow and what did I do with all my todays and tomorrows?
  • GRATEFUL for the DAILY AWARENESS that today never comes back and so after it is gone would I have left the world or at least “my world” a better place?
  • GRATEFUL for the DAILY AWARENESS that I fail my calling everyday to honour God and to love him above all else with all my heart, all my soul and all my strength, and yet He never fails to continue forgiving and loving me, because unlike me He is not the God of second chances but countless.
  • GRATEFUL for the DAILY AWARENESS that the fire that keeps the coals of my faith burning does not lie within a church, a church family, a religious system or even a house group, but with the Spirit of God Himself and I therefore have a direct source and access to that Spirit for He lives in me and I in Him and it is that constancy and that assurance that keeps my fire burning and not any external agent within the natural realm.
  • GRATEFUL for the DAILY AWARENESS that only when I have failed, I can learn what true success is and how to obtain it.
  • GRATEFUL for the DAILY AWARENESS that every now and then I need to take some punches in order to be taken down a peg or two so that I do not think of myself higher than I ought to.
  • GRATEFUL for the DAILY AWARENESS that my birthday is not today but everyday and with each new day comes a fresh opportunity to become aware of all the things above all over again, an opportunity to stop, take stock and give thanks for the grace and the unconditional love that God gives me and which I do not deserve.

THE BEST BIRTHDAY PRESENT IS KNOWING THAT WITH EVERY BREATH I GET YET ANOTHER OPPORTUNITY TO BECOME AWARE OF HOW BLESSED I REALLY AM AND AN OPPORTUNITY TO DEMONSTRATE MY GRATITUDE IN A PRACTICAL WAY.

IF I CAN ASK FOR JUST ONE THING ON THIS MY 44TH BIRTHDAY, LORD I ASK TO NEVER LOSE THIS AWARENESS AND TO ALWAYS DO SOMETHING WHICH LETS YOU KNOW THAT I AM GRATEFUL.