Living Each Day with My Father: Authority

To live each day with our Father takes recognizing we have authority and learning how to use it.

I have by no means arrived here, or on any of these topics. I am learning and sharing along the way. I feel I need to do a little “teaching” on authority, maybe because I am still figuring it out for myself. Care to join me?

Brief history of authority

Power and authority are closely connected and often used interchangeably. The definitions in the original languages include the meanings of both.

And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Matthew 28:18 KJV

The word power in this verse includes the meaning “the power of authority” and “one who possesses authority” (Strong’s)

  • God gave it to Adam – Genesis 1:26-31
  • Adam forfeited it by partnering with Satan and disobeying God – Genesis 3:6, 1 Timothy 2:14
  • Satan had authority – Luke 4:6, 2 Corinthians 4:4
  • Jesus restored authority to Heaven when He was raised from the dead – Ephesians 1:20-22,
  • God gave us authority – Ephesians 1:22-23, 2:6; Matthew 28:18-20

What are we are supposed to do with this authority? What do we have authority over?

  • All things – Ephesians 1:22
  • The world – 1 John 4:4
  • Thoughts – 2 Corinthians 10:5
  • Speech – Colossians 4:6, Ephesians 4:29
  • Emotions – Colossians 3:8-14
  • Mountains – Matthew 17:20
  • Satan and his realm – James 4:7, Matthew 10:1, 12:28

I have much to learn in all these areas. I want you to be aware of them and begin to use your authority. I want to focus on our authority over ourselves, our thoughts, and our choices.

Ways of exercising authority

Blessing my day

Something I started doing recently is blessing my day. I was listening to a message by Joyce Meyer. She said something to the effect of taking authority over your day by blessing it and everything in it. Blessing is more than a saying, more than “I wish you the best.” Our words of blessing carry power and the authority for God to move in the situation we have blessed.

Pleading the blood of Jesus

Pleading the blood may sound strange. Think of a court of law. A defendant is brought before the judge and asked how they plead. They can say guilty or not guilty. Because of Jesus we can say “I plead the blood of Jesus.” Jesus sacrifice makes us righteous fully adopted children of the Most High God! That carries some major authority. Everything God made available to Jesus is available to us. We are co-heirs with Jesus.

Declare my authority

I state my authority, reminding myself and Satan daily that he has no right to me or anything concerning me. I am under the blood of Jesus. My property, finances, family, everything concerning me is under the blood. Jesus provided for it to be safe from the thief.

Over my emotions

I frequently have to take authority over my emotions. Emotions are real. They are not always true and they are even less often a good basis for decisions. I am learning to feel and understand my emotions and what caused them without letting them run my life. Notice I said learning. I still struggle and fail in moments and situations. I will keep learning. I will keep asking.

Application

Is there an area you need to exercise the authority Jesus has given you?

How will using your authority change your perspective?

What scriptures are you standing on for assurance of your authority?

How will you practically take authority over this area?

Blue printable

Write out your day with your Father.

Download printable in orange

Download printable in blue

Download printable in green

I encourage you to keep it where you can read it during your day. Some days I take a picture with my phone so I can take it with me.

Living Each Day With My Father Posts:

Introduction

Focus

Authority (You’re here)

Thanksgiving

Hope

Encouragement

Rest

Living Each Day with My Father: Focus

Where is my heart set?

What gets my attention?

I can, and do, focus on so many things. I home school my three children. Two of them will be in high school this year. I can certainly focus on the fact that I better make sure I am doing it right. We are building a building that is WAY beyond my ability. We need more of everything than we have on our own, more money, more time, more skill, more labor.

I can focus on my home that isn’t finished and is never clean enough. Really I could just leave that at never clean. It does get cleaned on occasion and it is not overall disgusting to me anyway. I’m a firm believer in dirt never hurting anyone. Anyway, I could focus on that.

I could focus on my clothes that don’t fit quite right, my body that lumps in the wrong places, my blog that too often get neglected, and my platform “they” say I have to build. Then there’s ministry and politics and relationships…The list is endless.

What you have been focused on? Include the good and the bad. What has been occupying most of your thoughts and emotional energy?

What do I want my focus to be? The short answer: God. I think of verses that say things like:

Set your hearts on things above, seek first the kingdom, Bless the Lord, rejoice, and give thanks.

So how do I change my focus?

Short answer?

Focus on something else.

I know very obvious and not very helpful. It’s true though. Right now you are focused on the words in this post. Look up at the ceiling and you are no longer focused on the words on your screen.

Changing life long thought patterns is not that easy. However it really is that simple. Each and every time you think about or focus on something you don’t want to focus on refocus on something else. Eventually you will have created the new habit of focusing on the right thing.

Some practical ideas for refocusing

  • I find scripture and what God has to say about what to focus on.
  • I refocus by reading encouraging words, quotes, scriptures.
  • I have pictures around my home that God has used to speak to me, pictures that speak to my destiny and His promises.
  • I sing. Knowing hymns and solid scriptural songs is an easy way for me to refocus.
  • Sometimes I refocus by going in a room by myself and telling Satan to leave me alone. I take authority over anything that is not of God in my home or my environment and release the opposite. If there is tension I tell it to go and release peace.
  • I like to write. It is a great way for me to process what I am experiencing. I can identify lies, patterns, and connections I miss if I don’t write. I can also record the truth God reveals so I can go back to it when I need to refocus.
  • An accountability partner can be a great help to. This doesn’t have to be intense or time-consuming. It can be as simple as letting your friends know you have a new focus and you want them to ask you how you are doing. Give them permission to respectfully point out when you miss your new focus.

My day with my Father

Since God gave me this idea I try to write out my day with Father in the morning. That sounds strange. Here’s what I mean. I want to live each day with my Father to do that I need Focus, Authority, Thanksgiving, Hope, Encouragement, and Rest. So I write a sentence, word or phrase for each word.

Some days He speaks to me:

Focus: I love you. I am working. You are enough.

Authority: Bless the day. Walk in authority.

Thanksgiving: Praise me all day.

Hope: in, Me. I am faithful & true – Always.

Encouragement: I am pleased.

Rest: I am here. Ask. Listen. Obey.

Some days it is my thoughts to Him:

Focus: You are good and bigger than any hurt.

Authority: I control my thoughts and choose prayer praise.

Thanksgiving: I thank you for Brian and my kids, for hard relationships.

Hope: God you alone are my hope.

Encouragement: With you all things are possible.

Rest: I rest in Your goodness and love!

Some days it is a declaration:

Focus: I am loved and accepted.

Authority: I have authority in Jesus name.

Thanksgiving:  I am blessed beyond measure.

Hope: God is working in and through me.

Encouragement: It will be worth it.

Rest: God is for me. Who can be against me?

Write out your day with your Father.

Blue printable

Download printable in orange

Download printable in blue

Download printable in green

I encourage you to keep it where you can read it during your day. Some days I take a picture with my phone so I can take it with me.

Living Each Day With My Father Posts:

Introduction

Focus (You’re here)

Authority

Thanksgiving

Hope

Encouragement

Rest

Living Each Day with My Father

I’ve had a lot of hard days lately. Many more than I care to admit.  Keeping my thinking in line with truth has been a major challenge.

First I feel or think something ugly.
Then I beat myself up because-
  • I know better.
  • I’ve dealt with this.
  • I didn’t think I was like that.

Then it gets really good because I can beat myself up for beating myself up.

Sound familiar?

I hope not, but I suspect for some it does. Not you? Great! Maybe reading will help you understand a friend who falls into this dreadful, downward spiraling trap.

Reaching out for help wasn’t helping. Looking through too many dirty lenses to see help or truth perhaps?

There’s confusion.
 Why am I feeling this way? Why do I keep thinking that? Why am I here again? I thought I dealt with this. I had a strategy, what was it? Why can’t I change? What am I missing?
There’s condemnation. 
You’ve been teaching people, challenging people to walk victorious and look at you! You should know better. You DO know better. Look at what a mess you are.
There’s hopelessness.
This will never change. I will never change.
Through that stack of dirty lenses and massive cloud of lies I came upon an idea I want to hang onto. Maybe you can hang on to it too.

I live each day with my Father.

I live each day with focus, authority, thanksgiving, hope, encouragement, and rest.

Identity in the Father
Focus, Authority, Thanksgiving, Hope, Encouragement, Rest
Focus:
 Where have I set my attention? my affections?
Authority:
Remember Jesus has given me all authority in His name
Thanksgiving:
Reflect and acknowledge the goodness of God, the greatness of His character
Hope:
Where is my hope? People? Things? Desired outcomes? God alone.
Encouragement:
Asking Father to speak. He is always encouraging.
Rest:
In His presence is joy, peace and rest.

No matter the circumstance remembering, choosing, to abide with the Father makes it better.

Nothing changes when I remember I am seated with Him in heavenly places (Ephesians 2:6). Yet everything changes when I remember.

Nothing changes in my circumstances because I draw close to Him. It doesn’t have to.

I change when I draw close to Him. I find peace. I find rest. I remember He is bigger than it all. I remember He is good, beyond my understanding, beyond my seeing. He is working, always for my good. He has called me to rest. (Matthew 11:28)

I’ll explain each of these keys and how I am learning to use them to frame my day in future posts.

I have a very simple printable you can use to frame your day if it’s helpful. As I did mine I could feel stress leaving and peace growing. I often reread it during hard times of the day.

Blue printable

Download printable in orange

Download printable in blue

Download printable in green

How do you spend the day with your Heavenly Father?

Key of Authority

image
Jesus has given us the keys of the Kingdom

I will give to you the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will have been bound in heaven; and whatever you release on earth. Matthew 16:19 NHEB 

We have been given authority to chose life or death blessing or cursing.

Grace of Submission

I don’t always know best. I often think I do.
There were many days this summer on our God sized Project that I really wished I knew best. My way was faster, easier, and ultimately not how it got done.

I know just enough about construction to be dangerous. The creative, artistic part of me can come out a little too much. “It’s close enough.” “Does it really matter?” “Do we have to spend the time to do it that way?”

Shop floor
Shop floor

This entire summer was invested in a proper foundation for our shop, for my future. I would have expected two months at the most to be where we were four months into the project. I know the investment is worth it. That doesn’t automatically make it easy to have a good attitude. Our building season is short and we are really short on space. For too much of the summer I let the pressure of my desires ruin my attitude.

6" of insulation under the entire floor
6″ of insulation under the entire floor

Making sure everything is super insulated has been SO time-consuming. The extra insulation will save us money on heating forever.

 Am I insulating my soul? How do I insulate my soul? Constant feeding on the Living Word of God insulates me from setbacks and discouragement.
So much goes into the foundation. Everything must be square, straight and level. Then there is water-line, electrical, plumbing and heating that all has to be thought of and at least partially included in the foundation. It takes a long time and lots of effort.
River of red tubing
River of red tubing

Our spiritual foundation takes time and effort, too. In a sense it is finished, Jesus is the cornerstone, the author and finisher of our faith. In another sense we must keep building what Jesus has done into our own lives. Just as I had to choose to believe His offer of salvation I have to choose to believe He wants what is best for me, that He loves me, that He has good plans for my future. Submitting to what He says instead of what I feel or see. Chose His eternal truth over facts.
Over and over I have chosen to submit to my husband on the building project and God on the timing. My husband wants what is best and knows far more than I do about building. I submit, defer to his decision on how things must be done. He has patiently listened to my suggestions and questions, my pushing for somehow going faster or easier.

Proof I was doing more than taking pictures :)
Proof I was doing more than taking pictures 🙂

I also know God wants what is best and He is always faithful, never late. As a dear couple at church keep reminding me: Our project is not behind. We are on God’s time.
He is building in me and my family a foundation straight, level and square. We are going to need it. Just as the longevity of our building through wind and weather and even earthquakes depends hugely on the foundation our longevity of loving and serving God rests on our foundation of faith in Jesus and His Word. It would be easy to fall away when storms come without a good foundation.
The grace of submitting means the foundation is being built properly, even if I don’t always like the process or the timing. I can submit knowing the outcome will be what I really want not just what would be nice today.
Choose His eternal truth over facts.

Grace, Please? Thank you!

This week’s post was supposed to be about grace.
Instead I am asking for grace.
Building season, growing season, summer – pretty much everything but winter – is really short here in Alaska.

Doing as much as we can on our own on our God Sized Project keeps me very busy. We make progress every week. We are very grateful for Brian’s schedule that gives us 3 day weekends every week. We also have a LONG way to go. 
So I am asking for grace. I’ve not had the time or mental energy to put together a post for this week.
Thank you!
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We burned a outline of Alaska on our building site in April.Fire of Grace in Alaska IMG_1282
We cleared the ground for the foundation in May.Spreading GravelThe void had to be filled. Filling the hole.

Final passes over the pad to compact the fill, press everything into place.
Final passes over the pad to compact the fill, press everything into place.
Compacting for a strong building site.IMG_1772We dug in the footings in July.
IMG_1973Form boards and insulation under and inside the footings. IMG_2179Beginning of August we’re putting steel in the footings and insulating the outside of the footings.
I’ve posted a list of blessings God has given us almost every week, mostly to remind myself of His faithfulness. If you care to see how He’s providing look here: God Sized Project
How have you experienced grace this week?

Waiting Is Grace

Waiting is Grace

Waiting is not something I always do well. Often do not do well really.

I was so excited when I saw that waiting is grace.

Then I spent a month waiting and realized my excitement was quickly lost.

Why does God wait until the last possible second to provide what we need? 
It is grace. 
Think I’m crazy. Stick with me.
Remember Abraham. He waited 25 years for Isaac. That took – or maybe developed – patience. It took grace.
Let’s look at another scene with Abraham and Isaac.
1 Some time after these things God tested Abraham. He said to him, “Abraham!” “Here I am!” Abraham replied. 2 God said, “Take your son – your only son, whom you love, Isaac – and go to the land of Moriah! Offer him up there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains which I will indicate to you.” 3 Early in the morning Abraham got up and saddled his donkey. He took two of his young servants with him, along with his son Isaac. When he had cut the wood for the burnt offering, he started out for the place God had spoken to him about. 4 On the third day Abraham caught sight of the place in the distance.
This instruction makes no sense. Yet Abraham does not hesitate to obey. Amazing!
Let’s look farther on in the scene.

5 So he said to his servants, “You two stay here with the donkey while the boy and I go up there. We will worship and then return to you.” 6 Abraham took the wood for the burnt offering and put it on his son Isaac. Then he took the fire and the knife in his hand, and the two of them walked on together. 7 Isaac said to his father Abraham, “My father?” “What is it, my son?” he replied. “Here is the fire and the wood,” Isaac said, “but where is the lamb for the burnt offering?” 8 “God will provide for himself the lamb for the burnt offering, my son,” Abraham replied. The two of them continued on together.

Faith in the God who has been faithful for so many years.

9 When they came to the place God had told him about, Abraham built the altar there and arranged the wood on it. Next he tied up his son Isaac and placed him on the altar on top of the wood.

He is really doing this!

10 Then he stretched out his hand and grabbed the knife to slaughter his son.

Still doing this!

 11  Just then, an angel of the LORD called out to him from heaven and said, “Abraham! Abraham!” “Here I am!” he answered. 12 “Do not harm the boy!” the angel said. “Do not do anything to him, for now I know that you fear God because you did not withhold your son, your only son, from me.” Genesis 22:1-12 NET

Talk about the last possible second! The knife was in the air!

Waiting requires faith, without faith it is not possible to be pleasing to God (Hebrews 11:6). Requiring us to wait in faith is grace, allowing us to be pleasing.

Us waiting brings Him glory. Us waiting in faith brings Him more glory.

Us wandering around wringing our hands about when and how the provision will come robs some of His glory.

Us waiting with Biblical hope, the earnest expectation of a great good, brings Him glory.

We were created to bring Him glory. The waiting is grace.

I am waiting for financial provision or unpleasant situations to shift, not waiting for a way out of sacrificing my child!

I will put the energy of wondering and “hoping” to real hope and patience in faith. My God will supply all my needs.

I will provide the priests with abundant provisions. My people will be filled to the full with the good things I provide.”  Jeremiah 31:14 NET

 

Compacting the Foundation – Grace in the Shaking

After I dig out the clay – the lies, the misconceptions, the doubt, the ingratitude, the worry, the fear – I need to bring in new material, – reading God’s word, listening to godly people and God Himself.

Then I need to plant it firmly in my soul.
The hole must be filled.

A strong foundation isn’t built over a void.

Bringing in fill in the International Harvester dump truck
The fill had large rocks. Just left as they are they would make the foundation weak. The spaces would allow water to collect, potentially allowing frost heaving or erosion under the foundation. It would allow settling when the weight of the building sits over the voids, even small ones.Leveling it up.

The rocks could be removed, or they could be packed in tight. Compacting takes water. Water, pressure, and shaking.

Filling the hole.
26 Whose voice was the cause of the shaking of the earth; but now he has made an oath, saying, There will be still one more shaking, not only of the earth, but of heaven. 27 And the words, Still one more, make it clear that there will be a taking away of those things which are shaking, as of things which are made, so that there may be only those things of which no shaking is possible. 28 If then, we have a kingdom which will never be moved, let us have grace, so that we may give God such worship as is pleasing to him with fear and respect: 29 For our God is an all-burning fire. Heb 12:26-29 BBE (emphasis mine)

Getting flatter, more solid.

Leaving holes, little voids in my soul allows me to settle.

A little complaining, a little impatience, a little questioning of God’s faithfulness or goodness. Each void can be filled with His word so I am less shaken.

To fill the voids in my soul I need water. Jesus my living water and the washing with His Word. Not just passing my ears, not just on Sunday morning or a few minutes in morning devotions.

Compacting
I need His words pounded deep in my soul. Firmly planted as part of my foundation.

Meditation is the work that firmly plants the word. Think on His word again and again. Each meditation pushes it deeper. The solid truth being pushed deeper, closer, firmer – fills the voids.

Final passes over the pad to compact the fill, press everything into place.
Final passes over the pad to compact the fill, press everything into place.

I know the shaking is grace, I choose to welcome it.
The shaking can be quite unpleasant when we forget who and what is shaking.
The shaking transforms something rough and useless into a prime place to build. What grace!

This is the same rocky spot, now tightly compacted, ready to build.
This is the same rocky spot, now tightly compacted, ready to build.

When we remember God does the shaking, that we have been given an unshakable Kingdom we can rest in the shaking.
The shaking is grace.
We are given grace through the shaking.
We give grace through the shaking as we praise and worship our God of grace.

Are you allowing the shaking to build a firm foundation?

Fire of Grace

Fire of Grace in AlaskaWe lit a fire in communities throughout Alaska and let it spread across the state. Our prophetic prayer for our beloved state. Our prayer for grace to be seen here like never before.

Fire

Fire is powerful, often destructive – certainly when it is out of control. Under control it is quite useful. Our fire burned away the dead, the unfruitful. This will make room for new growth. The black ash draws heat from the sun to warm the soil. Burning the dead grass makes the nutrients more accessible to the living plants.

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Grace is a holy fire burning everything that will not last in the Kingdom of God. The question is not if grace is under control.

It is – Are we under grace?

The burning will come. Burning away those dead works of ours makes room for growth, nourishes our soul for He makes beauty from ashes.

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For someone not under grace the fire is devastating, yet still grace, for in devastation one can still turn to Him, still accept His grace. He can take even those ashes, those burned without one having faith. He has already done that for each of us. Ashes from our pre-saved lives are being made beautiful even now, beautiful for eternity.

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As our dead works are burned away we will grow, refreshingly sweet. Others will see how our ashes became beauty. This is the way of grace. The way of redemption. The way of revival.

Fire of Grace burning along the Iditarod Trail
Fire of Grace burning along the Iditarod Trail

As we burn others will see our freedom and long to burn as well. It will spread until the whole world hears.

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All is grace. The beauty and the fire.