Archive for the ‘ joy ’ Category

joy heals.

The higher truth—joy heals.

a joyful heart by contemporary artist Sue Kemnitz

John tells a story in John 5:2-9 of an invalid who lays by the pool of Bethesda.

“One man [among a multitude of invalids] was there who had been an invalid for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there and knew that he had already been there a long time, he said to him, ‘Do you want to be healed?’ The sick man answered him, ‘Sir, I have no one to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up, and while I am going another steps down before me.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Get up, take up your bed, and walk.’ And at once the man was healed, and he took up his bed and walked.”

Jesus asks an odd question, “Do you want to be healed?” You would think the answer would be a simple “yes.” But the invalid gives a couple of excuses: “I have no one to put me into the pool…” “while I am going another steps down before me…” The first reason is actually stated in vs. 5. He’d been this way for 38 years. It’s the way its been for a long, long time.

How often do we sabotage ourselves? In Dawna DeSilva’s first message at “Shifting Atmospheres”, she mentioned that “familiar spirits” are the hardest. In other words, we become familiar, or used to, a situation, and we accept it as fact.

The invalid says:

  • There’s no one to help me.
  • Someone else deserves the healing more than I.
  • He’s been that way for as long as he can remember.

Jesus simply chooses to ignore the familiar excuses. He didn’t do the, “I think if you just…”

Pastor Doyal gave me a great insight on Sunday. I bruised a rib a couple weeks ago while gardening. Does anyone else jump on the shovel to get it into the hard soil? My rib, as I was leaning on the shovel handle and jumping on the bottom, was softer than the ground I was trying to break up. Indeed, the shovel got the best of me. What concerned me was that each day, it seemed to be getting worse. Was it becoming “familiar?” I kept expecting the healing, but where was it?

Doyal quoted Proverbs 17:22,“A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.” What I heard was the ending word, bones, and the beginning, “a joyful heart is good medicine.” Though I didn’t have a crushed spirit, I freely admit I was not living as positively as I could.

Since Sunday afternoon, I have been working on a joyful heart. As I become frustrated, I choose patience. When the critical spirit comes, I choose to encourage and bless. As I see challenges, I choose heavenly solutions. When negativity reared its head (all day!) on Monday, I chose to return to positivity. This keeps me in joy. The shovel won the battle, but I choose to win the war—with Jesus.

Each day, my rib now feels better and better. I am no different than you. Being joyful is a choice. I am determined—I will stay joyful. And here’s a revelation. Scripture works! It is the higher truth.

What are you agreeing with today? Is it a “familiar” spirit? What do you need to ignore? What will you choose instead?

Sue
Only believe!

Join us for the next “Shifting Atmospheres,” Monday evening, July 9, 7-9pm, at NewDay in New Prague.
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it is I; don’t be afraid.

I so want this to be the focus of my days here on earth—to have my eyes and heart on Him. Not afraid. In reality, I get snippets. But I am encouraged, I get more snippets as time goes on!

doodling acts by sue kemnitz

In John 6:16, Jesus states, “It is I; don’t be afraid.” Jesus had just finished showing us what supernatural provision was earlier in John 6, and now – oh my goodness!

The disciples are tired after handing out food all day. Their hearts are full. When I experience Jesus and see Him in “action,” it leaves me without words. Humbled. Thankful. And so I imagine that is how the disciples are feeling.

Peter heading up the gang, tho it doesn’t say. I surmise that because they head to the sea—the “usual” spot to hang for Peter, the fisherman. They all jump in the boat. Their minds are all abuzz and they are still amazed and a little befuddled. In the back of their mind, are they wondering, “Where did Jesus disappear to? We need to cross before the weather changes.”

But they waited a titch too long. The strong winds kick up and they are being tossed too and fro. Thomas chimes in, “I knew we waited too long.” Matthew’s thinking, “There’s a reason I work on dry land…” Judas is grumbling, “Now we have to row…” The boys look longingly at the shore in the distance. And – what is that? No! Who is that? Is it a ghost or an angel? (Superman? Kinda!) It’s Jesus! Jesus! Is He … walking on water? Who, truly, is this?

Indeed, who truly is this Jesus? Who is the one without any limits. The one who can feed 10,000, fix lame legs, who can walk on churning waves, and calls God his Poppa? Who is this?

And they marvel.

This verse has been on my mind lately. “On the glorious splendor of your majesty, and on your wondrous works, I will meditate.” Psalm 145:5

Who is He for you today? Your Provider? Your Healer? The One who not only talks to the children, but to the wind, too. Meditate on His splendor and His majesty. Keep your eyes on Him. Do not fear. And then you will be glad. And be at the land.

Who is He to you today?

sue
Only believe!

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doodling acts by sue kemnitz

Part of my “doodling acts” series, this vision shows us, as fruit [cherries, I think :)] being sent -
often by challenges in our lives. Similar to the disciples and believers in Stephen’s day.

the dove

What is there about the dove, I wonder? Why did the Spirit descend like a dove?

dove by contemporary artist sue kemnitz

In a vision, John the baptist saw a dove land on Jesus before it happened. (John 1:32-34) The vision was given so John could know, and not doubt. He saw the dove land on Jesus, meaning Jesus is the One. The One whom John was sent to prepare the way for.

A bird landing on Jesus? That draws our attention. Why a dove?

Several other birds come to mind.

Why not a stately eagle? Proud and strong. However, it might be hard to see through the feathers and the sharp talons could be painful.

Why not a sparrow? God cares about them (though He loves us more.) For sure then, the sparrow could be “along for the ride.”

Why not a cardinal? Beautiful, a bold red, and colorful. Color is good—I like color.

The dove is a common symbol, often meaning peace. Innocent and harmless. They were the only birds that could be sacrificed at the temple, according to The Law, the implication being that they are pure and clean. Psalm 68 mentions a dove whose wings are as yellow as gold. I’d love to see that one.

However, I believe a dove was purposefully chosen because the dove signals a new season. Back on the arc, Noah sent the dove out (three times, I remember Pastor Doyal saying) and the third time the dove returned with an olive leaf. This was a sign that it was time for them to return to land and rebuild their community.

God chose the dove to land on Jesus because Jesus is not only the “reason for the season,” He is the new season. A season of joy and laughter instead of mourning. Of gentleness and kindness rather than pride. Of forgiveness direct from heaven. Justice. And – as the disciple John points out more than anyone, a season of love. Pure, righteous, brilliant love. Jesus, and His works, display the heart of the Father. He forgives. He redeems, He loves.

Last year when Bill Johnson spoke at NewDay, I painted a dove during worship. When I went home, there was a white dove sitting next to my driveway. I approached Bill Johnson the next day and told him about it. As Bill does well, he prompts us to go further, “Did you invite him in?” No. I can’t say the thought came to mind.

The dove continued to remain on Jesus. Will you let Him in? Will you “go” so He can “remain?” Will you walk in rest and peace so as not to scare, or worry, Him off?

“And John bore witness: “I saw the Spirit descend from heaven like a dove, and it remained on him. I myself did not know him, but he who sent me to baptize with water said to me, ‘He on whom you see the Spirit descend and remain, this is he who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’ And I have seen and have borne witness that this is the Son of God.” John 1:32-34

Will the dove remain on you today? At peace? In love? Expectant of adventure?

sue
Only believe!

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dove prints

grace in disappointment

“Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth.” Psalm 100:1

doodling acts 4 - great grace

Gliding over the start of this Psalm to the Lord, this seems an easy task. After all, His joy is our strength. It is a great day, rejoice in it. (Rejoice = joy multiplied. -Kris V) His joy is in us. You get the picture.

But what about disappointment? What then? There are real troubles on this earth. Children grow up and go their way. There’s crabby people in stores. A day of pouring rain when I have Iris’s to plant. (I obviously live in a cushie world…)

I would suggest to you that this is exactly where we get to rise and shine. How do we as peeps of God respond?

Ryan and Sara Hall were on Bethel.tv this past weekend. They actually were the sermon. Fun! Ryan ran in the last Olympics—a marathon none-the-less!—and Sara did not. They still held the celebration party for Sara. This was my take-away. Of course there are disappointments. We get to choose. Sulk or smile. Rejoice or crab. Pray and release or harden our heart. Kill joy or spread even more joy.

The beginning of Acts 4 starts with two fishermen speaking boldly of Jesus. I somehow don’t see fishermen as having the gift of gab, but I could be wrong. Then they get arrested. Then they are asked to muffle it. Then they ask for even more boldness. Then they prayed, and the earth shook. Could it be the earth was pleasantly surprised at their response?

Then they give testimony of Jesus and grace covered them.

I stopped at the grocery store early this morning. The checkout lady looked uncomfortable and just plain crabby. I smiled and asked if I could release Jesus’ healing on her. She said, “No.” No? I told her how He loved her and left. Trying not to shake my head as I left the store. The No’s still surprise me.

My job? Shake the dust off my feet. Ask for more boldness. And I asked the Lord to bless her Abundantly! In whatever makes her happy. And in Him. Bring a smile to her face.

And the Lord covers us with grace and the comforter. Oh happy day.

And with great power the apostles were giving their testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and great grace was upon them all.” Acts 4:33

Could it be the earth was pleasantly surprised at their response?

sue
Only believe!

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doodling acts 4 - great grace
Chapter 4 of Doodling Acts – Join me!

blue appliances

What could blue appliances and healing the sick possibly have in common?

1950s retro stove

As I was preparing for the message last week, my attention kept wandering to my new Atomic Ranch magazine (atomic-ranch.com). I was frankly a bit disappointed in the mag because I had hoped it would be fun contemporary house ideas and instead it is more about returning 1950’s ranch-style homes to their former glory. Oh well… I still like looking at the pictures.

As I reigned my mind back in, I said, “Lord, what are you telling me?” The blue appliances (available at bigchill.com) and blue cars stuck out in my mind. And then the 1950’s date. Blue can be symbolic of revelation. So I Googled “Spiritual happenings in the 1950’s” eager to see what or who the Lord wanted to show me. I found a few names: William Branham, Jack Coe, and A.A. Allen. How fun is this? I love it when God talks like this!

William Branham was a powerful healing evangelist, traveling and speaking across the U.S. and attracting thousands to his meetings. He had a huge bright angel that traveled with him. There was also this picture which is currently archived in the Library of Congress. See the halo? That’s not a halo of glitter and cardboard. It’s a supernatural godly halo!

William Branham

The Lord would also give Branham visions of car wrecks and people on their deathbeds and then lead Branham into the scenarios, giving him the address or location. He started Voice of Healing, a magazine that chronicled the revival of the 40’s and 50’s. Yes – he had issues later on. Just like you and me. (That’s why community is good. To replace/displace our issues with the character of Jesus.)

I think the Lord led me through all of this as a reminder of what we can carry as we turn our hearts to the Lord. There is so much more! How to tap in?

  • Spend time with Jesus. Pick a time of day to focus on Him and to ask Him what He wants to accomplish.
  • Pray for opportunities. I did this last night before a meeting and ended up sitting close to a lady whose back was incredibly tender. We went outside, I gently put my hand on her back and prayed for her. She felt tingling as Jesus brought relief. Thank you, Jesus! (She was not walking like all the pain was gone, so I need to check in with her this morning and maybe pray again.) When we went back to the table, the lady on the other side of me asked, “Did you give her an adjustment?” I smiled, “No, just Jesus.”
  • Start with thanksgiving and praise and end with thanksgiving and praise.
  • Be yourself! Sometimes its awkward to spend time in public in prayer. Be encouraged with Graham Cooke’s words, “Its always awkward, so you might as well have fun with it.”
  • Be persistent. Don’t give up. I’m grateful that Heidi Baker shares that she prayed for 200 deaf people before the first one was healed.

“Heal the sick who are there and tell them, ‘The kingdom of God has come near to you.’ “ Luke 10:8

Interestingly, my fire alarm just went off three times. God is so fun! What do you think that means???

(This is part 3 of 3 about Luke 10:1-20 that we talked about on Sunday at NewDay. Did you miss Luke 10:3? Click here… or Click here for Luke 10:4.)

Sue
Only believe.

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leave it behind

Bring faith. Bring confidence. Bring Jesus. Expect adventure. Leave the rest behind.

sketch by contemporary abstract artist s kemnitz

“Carry no moneybag, no knapsack, no sandals, and greet no one on the road.” Luke 10:4

Faith is having confidence in His promises. It “is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” Hebrews 11:1 It can’t be earned. It is a choice. You simply bring it. Really. Bring faith. It is earth, so sometimes you need to brush off the “Why didn’t…” and read the verse again.

Jesus didn’t hesitate. When He thanked the Father for the five loaves and two fish, how many people were fed? Without portion control. When Jesus stretched out His hand to heal, what happened? When Jesus looked Legion in the eyes, and told the demons to leave. They not only left, they jumped over the cliff and were dashed on the rocks below.

That is what we are to be about. Confidently doing the when part. Bring confidence.

We had an amazing testimony the last evening of class (visit NDSSM). Heidi was prompted by the Lord to give a $1,000 check to a specific person. She mumbled and whined a bit (sounds just like me!), but did finally do it. It was puzzling to the person she gave it to. No immediate need there. He was in the final stages of writing a book and had submitted it to Thomas Nelson Publishers. (I hope I have that right. I think I do.) Within two weeks, the publisher contacted her friend and said, “if you can invest $1,000 in your book, we will publish and publicize it.” That is huge! Wow! That’s our God at work! Bring adventure.

I had a dream a while back and when I put my hand, filled with the power of Jesus, on a powerful Godly man’s chest, he was filled with even more of the power of God. Only in a dream would I have approached a man of this stature and laid hands on him. When we pray, the power of Jesus flows through us. Take a bit of time to study your hands today. Do you see Jesus in them? See the scars that empower us to continue His work? Bring Jesus.

Forget the extra pair of flip-flops, the purse with lip gloss, and your credit cards. Keep your shoulders open for Holy Spirit to travel on you. And don’t get distracted by friends, even well-meaning friends, along the way! Bring the important stuff, faith, confidence, and Jesus. Expect adventure.

What could distract you today?

(This is a continuation of Luke 10:1-20 that we talked about on Sunday. Did you miss Luke 10:1? Click here…)

Sue
Only believe.

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sketch by contemporary abstract artist s kemnitz

This sketch is a commission for an unborn child. I’m not sure this is the finished product – but fun to give you a glimpse, my faithful followers. The name is Crowned with Love. How delightful is this—what an honor!

be a lamb

Truth be told, I didn’t like being a sheep very much, and now, here in Luke 10:3, Jesus says, “Go your way; behold, I am sending you out as lambs in the midst of wolves.”

abstract dove by contemporary artist sue kemnitz

So – are you ready for the journey? Are your furry curls in place? Flip-flops on your hooves? A lamb? Really? As I thought about this, I pictured me as a lamb. Innocent, defenseless, prone to distraction and wandering off on my own, and naive. Yes – in reality – that often sums me up. And what’s that up ahead? A pack of mean-spirited, drool-y, big-fanged, sharp-clawed wolves. Yikes!

However, there is Truth. And that is, “…Christ in me, the hope of glory.” Colossians 1:27

What does this means in us?

  • There’s a King inside of me. The brilliant morning Star! Able to do anything and Who can provide all we need.
  • Victory is inside of me because the One who is victorious lives inside of me. We’ve read the end of the book. Jesus wins the age. For eternity.
  • The One in whom is all patience, kindness, gentleness, joy, and yes, even self-control is inside. These are the characteristics we have inherited!
  • I am held up by His strong right hand. “(It) shimmers with power and shatters the enemy.” (Ex. 15, The Message)
  • The strong mighty warrior is inside of me. Even on His white stallion!

Indeed, we can be a lamb because the lion of Judah lives inside of us and is in disguise.

Yesterday, Pastor Doyal gave me the honor of teaching for a few minutes in front of church, of which this post was part of. I woke up shaking. Not a great feeling, but real. Then I realized that I didn’t have to accept that shaking as fear. I chose to believe it was the Holy Spirit in me. And often, that feels like electricity and shaking! Thanks, Jesus!

Focus on Who is inside.Then we can be content to be a lamb. Fully dependent on the One who can fully do it all and be all!

Earlier in Colossians 1:27 it mentions, “To them God chose to make known how great among the Gentiles are the riches of the glory of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.”

Picture the riches. All He brings and grows inside of us. It’s a mystery and its good!

When you, as a lamb, look in the mirror today, Who is looking back?

Sue
Only believe.

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