First off, I have to give a shout-out to little Miss Adelaide May Dickert, who was born on May 26, 2011 (today) at 4:45!! WAHOOOOO! Congrats Sarah & Donald… I love you both so much. Many people already know this, but Sarah (my cuz) and her hubby, Donald took me in as their little child after I came to know the Lord at their wedding and decided to get the heck outta Maine and move back to the South! They were newly weds, but stood firm in obedience to God and really discipled and walked me through this whole Christianity thing. Lord knows I wasn’t easy (literally, a LOL & lord have mercy on their souls) and even though I acted like a rebellious teenager at times, they loved me, gave me truth in the times I didn’t want to hear it, and in the end…well,  I guess I turned out okay- but still a work in progess! ;-) Anyways, they will always hold a special place in my heart, and both were there for me during some of my lowest times. If it was not for them, I would not be marrying Ethan… and Donald is actually going to be the one walking me down the aisle at our wedding!

Anywho, it’s funny because this morning I woke up right about the time Adelaide was born, but from a really awful dream. I’ve wrote about this before concerning my experiences with Spiritual warfare in my dreams. Because of this reoccurring issue of awful dreams, it really has made me view the Spiritual Realm as something completely different than I once did. It’s made God that much more real to me; not only his power and majesty, but the darkness that really does come outside of God.

Last night I had a dream that I was possessed by the devil. I was going back and forth between being my regular self and then the enemy would take over my words and thought-life. I would start screaming at my mom, but then I would start to apologize and say, “I’m sorry, I’m sorry this isn’t me!” Ethan was just staring at me like I was insane, and I kept screaming, “Pray this out of me! Pray this out of me!” But all he wanted to do was go with my Step-dad to get beer. (okay kind of funny, but not so much when you are possessed)

This is where God’s goodness comes into play. That dream was down-right awful and truthfully it scared the bajeeba’s out of me. But when I woke up, I had this burning desire to go to God’s word. And that dream was a direct reflection of my life, and what God is walking me through in this season.

It’s funny how God will continuously allow things to happen and throw things at you until you are humbled and show a true change of heart. Running from things, or covering sin up by manipulating words doesn’t fool God. And when Christians say, “God will never give you more than you can handle.” That is a down-right lie from the enemy. God will continuously give you more than you can handle until we learn to humble ourselves and relinquish pride that gets in the way from true repentance. Justification of our actions does not work with God and we’ve got to stop this, because justification is NOT true repentance and it will NOT change our actions in the future.

Just read this scripture and let it sink into our little self-righteous brains…

Then the LORD spoke to Job out of the storm:

“Brace yourself like a man;
I will question you,
and you shall answer me.

“Would you discredit my justice?
 Would you condemn me to justify yourself?
Do you have an arm like God’s,
and can your voice thunder like his?
Then adorn yourself with glory and splendor,
and clothe yourself in honor and majesty.

Wow. Is it possible to read that and still swim in your pride? For me, yes. God really, really, really has to throw things in my face blatantly, because of my “it’s all about me” issues. But once again, this God we serve is so freaking good and he really takes the time to hold our hand, and walk us through the hard, convicting stuff that we don’t always face with that joy of the Lord.

Gosh, I can’t stress enough the importance of being real with God in the areas that we struggle in. It’s when we don’t bring these areas to him, where we really give room for the enemy breed within us. What begins in our thought-life, ends in actions, unless we humble ourselves before others and before God.

He mocks proud mockers, but shows favor to the humble and oppressed. –Proverbs 3:34

“When the holy Spirit shows us an area that needs repentance, we must overcome the instinct to defend ourselves. We must silence the little lawyer who steps out from the dark closet in our minds pleading, “My client is no that bad.” Your “defense attorney” will defend you until the day you die and if you listen to him you will never see what is wrong in your face, nor face what needs to change.” –The Three Battlegrounds, Francis Frangipane

In this season of my life, I’ve completely been using my defense attorney. Saying, “But God, this person is wrong, this person is judging me, this person, this person, this person.” The more we try cover up blatant sin by saying BUT, or using justification, the more God laughs at us and says, “Oh, honey… don’t you know that I know these things? Don’t you know that I see it, don’t you know that I’m the 0ne working it out in them right now? Don’t you know that these petty things you are trying to justify… those are the things that were justified on the cross, by my bloodshed? And lastly, don’t you know that I show mercy towards those things?” Then, we sit there dumbfounded, thinking oh yeah. Duh.

Gosh, walking this Christian thing out is hard. God gives us so many gifts that are meant to glorify him, and we twist, we turn, and we adjust to fit our needs and our wants. It’s actually sickening to think of the manipulation that I’ve used in the past… not show the glory of God, but the Glory of me getting seen, or trying to get praise, or wanting people to like me. I mean, how many times have we all gone out of our way to make s0meone else look bad for the Glory of our own name?

Justification doesn’t work. Saying the word, BUT doesn’t work. And justification is taking a step back in our walk. Each time we justify we are slapping God in the face and saying, “I don’t give a darn what you are trying to teach me, I’m right… that person is wrong and I’m doing it MY WAY.”

For awhile now I’ve struggled in speaking truth. God has given me SO much passion for true restoration in others’ lives. Not for my own glory, but because of Jesus’ goodness, and that I am not longer who I once was. I know where I’ve been, and I never want to go back to that person. That girl is gone, she is dead and my Spirit is new in Christ. Because of that passion deep within me, often times I speak (or write) from a place of “this is how it was for me, and this is how it is for you.” Oh my word, God is so breaking that off, and let me tell you… it’s not fun. I’ve been justifying writing or saying certain things, because well, “it’s truth, so deal with it.” Yes, it’s truth, and yes it needs to be heard. But the enemy has been succeeding in twisting a gift from God. So many times I don’t take a step back, pray, and ask God, should I say this? Is this my flesh, or is this you?  God does not give us wisdom and discernment to twist for our fleshly desires. I am blessed that God reveals what he does to me, and that God gives me that drive to share what he wants to be shared. But when we step out of what God wants and step into want our flesh wants, we justify. And that is so wrong.

There are so many people in my life that are in the places I once was in. And let me tell you, watching them walk down that road is so hard for me. But I am not the one to save them, and I cannot control what they do. As Christians, no matter where you are in your walk… we’ve got to accept it. We can’t force growth, we can’t force change. We can’t play Jesus in people’s lives. It’s wrong. What God has done in each of us, may not be what God has planned for someone else. It’s control, it’s manipulation and that is not of God, but from the enemy.

God led me to Romans 14 this morning and I really think it’s so important to pray on this scripture. We all need to really let God speak to us, so we can operate in the place God wants, and not in the place of our fleshly desires. Not wanting to see someone walk down the wrong path is NOT a justification for over-stepping boundaries, and speaking truth when the Holy Spirit is not leading us to speak it.

The Weak and the Strong– Romans 14

1 Accept the one whose faith is weak, without quarreling over disputable matters. 2 One person’s faith allows them to eat anything, but another, whose faith is weak, eats only vegetables. 3 The one who eats everything must not treat with contempt the one who does not, and the one who does not eat everything must not judge the one who does, for God has accepted them. 4Who are you to judge someone else’s servant? To their own master, servants stand or fall. And they will stand, for the Lord is able to make them stand.

5 One person considers one day more sacred than another; another considers every day alike. Each of them should be fully convinced in their own mind. 6 Whoever regards one day as special does so to the Lord. Whoever eats meat does so to the Lord, for they give thanks to God; and whoever abstains does so to the Lord and gives thanks to God. 7 For none of us lives for ourselves alone, and none of us dies for ourselves alone. 8 If we live, we live for the Lord; and if we die, we die for the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord. 9 For this very reason, Christ died and returned to life so that he might be the Lord of both the dead and the living.

10 You, then, why do you judge your brother or sister[a]? Or why do you treat them with contempt? For we will all stand before God’s judgment seat. 11 It is written:

“‘As surely as I live,’ says the Lord,
‘every knee will bow before me;
every tongue will acknowledge God.’”[b]

12 So then, each of us will give an account of ourselves to God.

13 Therefore let us stop passing judgment on one another. Instead, make up your mind not to put any stumbling block or obstacle in the way of a brother or sister. 14 I am convinced, being fully persuaded in the Lord Jesus, that nothing is unclean in itself. But if anyone regards something as unclean, then for that person it is unclean. 15 If your brother or sister is distressed because of what you eat, you are no longer acting in love. Do not by your eating destroy someone for whom Christ died. 16 Therefore do not let what you know is good be spoken of as evil. 17 For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit, 18 because anyone who serves Christ in this way is pleasing to God and receives human approval.

19 Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification. 20 Do not destroy the work of God for the sake of food. All food is clean, but it is wrong for a person to eat anything that causes someone else to stumble. 21 It is better not to eat meat or drink wine or to do anything else that will cause your brother or sister to fall.

22 So whatever you believe about these things keep between yourself and God. Blessed is the one who does not condemn himself by what he approves. 23 But whoever has doubts is condemned if they eat, because their eating is not from faith; and everything that does not come from faith is sin.