The Manifestation of the Sons of God — Shane Picardo

“For all creation waits in eager expectation for the manifestation of the sons of God.” (Romans 8:19)

Not everyone who calls themselves as a ‘child of God’ here on earth are truly recognized in heaven as a son or daughter of God. I believe there’s a difference between boasting- “I know God” and knowing that- “He knows you”. So as His child, He probably looks at you, beckons one of the angels and says, “See, that’s my beloved son/daughter there.” Because the Lord knows those that are His children.

Let me tell you a story:

Many years ago, a well-known ‘man of God’ went to visit a king. He managed to make it to the castle and reach the throne room. The king being busy with some work gave this man of God 10 minutes to speak. Meanwhile his 5-year-old son, whom he loved the most, just walks in with tear filled eyes holding a toy in his hand- “Daddy my favorite toy just broke while I was playing. Can you fix it?” The king then picks up his son, puts him on his lap and starts fixing the toy by putting its parts in order. After it was done, his son gave him a kiss & went to his room rejoicing.

The king looking at the clock, told the man of God, “You have 5 minutes left. My son took the other 5 minutes”.

If this scenario could be true with the king and his son, how much more would our Heavenly Father do for us as His children when we cry out “Abba! My Father!” It is the same when you walk in relationship with God. When you gaze upon the genealogy of Jesus in Luke 3:23 onwards, at the end you see it being stated that Adam was the son of God. In Matthew 6:9 and Matthew 23:9, Jesus Himself urges us to address God as “Father”.

Even though many of us believers have been prodigal, He has drawn us back to Him through His Son Jesus Christ. We should never forget that Jesus is not only our Lord and Saviour but also our big brother, seated at the right hand of Daddy, interceding and praying for us.

Daughters of God like Wendy Alec, Heidi Baker, late Kathryn Kuhlman and so on, have impacted the world through television and great revivals, healings, signs, wonders, and miracles by virtue of their relationship with God with no backup of titles.

Let me give an example. The great revivalist Kathryn Kuhlman stunned the world by mighty works of healings, signs wonders, and miracles, performed by God through her. Stadiums were jam packed with people just to hear her preach and experience the tangible presence of God she carried. And yet humble enough, to state: “I am neither a Prophet nor some Apostle.” God needs “yielded vessels.” She knew who she was in Christ. You too should let the world know you as a son or daughter of the Most-High God.
“And if we are His children then we are His heirs also; heirs of God and joint-heirs with Christ.” (Romans 8:17)

Your rights and privileges as heirs of God:

• Knowing that God is your Father, you have direct access to visit His throne and to spend time with Him.
• You are qualified to do the things Jesus did, and even greater works…John 14:12
• As the Father’s prince or princess, you have been given power and authority as co-builders with Christ to expand and build His Kingdom on earth. 1 Corinthians 3:9
• In prayer, to exercise dominion and take over uncharted territories of the enemy here on earth and to uproot and tear down all that the enemy has planted against God’s Kingdom.
• Unlimited access to heaven’s resources.

So how do you walk in authority and exercise your rights as a son of God?

Here is the key- “For all those who are led by the Spirit of God are the sons of God.” (Romans 8:14). To be totally led by the Holy Spirit requires being continually filled with Him. Peter who was ‘filled with the Holy Spirit’ preached to onlookers at the day of Pentecost and saved 3000 people (Acts 2:41). He was able to perform the instant healing of a lame beggar at the temple gate (Acts 3:1-10).

Another instance to cite is where people used to wait on the streets for Peter to pass by in the hope that his shadow would fall on them and they would be healed. (Acts 5:15) The same Holy Spirit who anointed Peter, John, Paul is also available to us!

The scripture in Romans 8:19 says that ‘creation awaits eagerly’ for the sons of God to be manifested. This is because the creation has been under the curse, bondage, death, and witnessed a lot of evil from the kingdom of darkness since the fall of Adam. It silently moans and wails for the Kingdom of God to be made manifest through the sons and daughters of God.

The scripture states, “For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope 21 that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God.” (Romans 8:20-21)

“Having canceled the record of charges against us, which stood against us and condemned us; has taken it away nailing it to the cross. And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross.” (Colossians 2:14-15)

Satan’s status today: Defeated, Disarmed, Deprived of his authority.

To the reader of my article, I just want to ask you, how is your relationship with God?

In prayer, do you use words like- “Dad I love you.” “You’re special.” “I’m blessed to have you in my life.” “Let’s spend some time together in fellowship.” “I want to sit with you.” “Wrap your arms around me.” “I want to know what’s in your heart.” “I want to be like you.” “Let’s talk” and so on or do you always keep on asking, asking and asking for God to fulfill your every wish?

The scripture is very clear, “Delight yourself in the Lord & He will give you the desires of your heart.” (Psalms 37:4)

If you have Him, you have everything, but without Him, you are nothing.

When you know your Father is smiling at you, you can face the world! And it’s time to face the world. It’s time to walk in the power and authority given to us by the Most High! It’s time to reveal heaven on earth. Revival begins with you. So are you ready? Put down religion, put down traditions, put down rituals and start having a relationship with Daddy. I’m telling you, it will be worth it!

Stay Blessed!

– Shane Picardo

Keys to Overcoming Discouragement — Dr. Jonathan D’Souza

Definition of Discouragement: ‘a loss of confidence, or enthusiasm, or dispiritedness’.

I am certain that every individual has faced some form of discouragement during this wonderful journey called life. Discouragement can drain you of all motivation and make you give up on your dreams/goals. We live in a time where true success needs perseverance. Let’s take the story of the famous scientist Thomas Edison (the inventor of the incandescent light bulb).

In a 1910 biography, Edison’s friend and associate Walter S. Mallory said:

Thomas Edison 10,000 ways something won't work‘’Isn’t it a shame that with the tremendous amount of work you have done you haven’t been able to get any results?’ Edison turned on me like a flash, and with a smile replied: ‘Results! Why, man, I have gotten lots of results! I know several thousand things that won’t work!

Persistence is an outdated concept in our daily routine that is ‘instant-oriented’. Instant coffee, 2 min noodles, next day delivery etc. However, discouragement is the biggest killer of persistence.

overcome discouragementLet’s see a lovely example from the Holy Bible in Haggai 2:1-9. Here is a prophetic word given by God through His prophet Haggai to His people involved in the rebuilding of the Jewish Temple. The foundation of the temple was laid approximately 15 years before, but the project was shelved. In response to Haggai’s word, the leader and people commenced rebuilding of the Temple. In Haggai 2:1-9 we discover that God encourages his discouraged people to persevere in His work.

What touched me personally while reading this passage is that God—the Almighty, Lord of Hosts, all Powerful One—cares about His people being discouraged. What an understanding God!

There are 5 major causes of discouragement:

1. Loss of initial enthusiasm
Whenever we launch a project, we begin at 100%. But as time passes, that excitement dies down. This is evident in every aspect of our lives, be it a school assignment, an office project, even ministry work.

We can try and visualize how the Temple could have looked. Imagine the walls being constructed, tiles being set in place, gold decorations being arranged, but the finishing touches were simply missing. Maybe the gold available at the time was insufficient. Perhaps the number of laborers thinned down as the years passed by leaving the construction rubble aside.

2. Delays can discourage us
The Bible rightly says in Proverbs 13:12 “Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life.” People who love multi-tasking hate delays. In fact, delays affect our entire schedule and push a project way beyond its stipulated time. The Jewish Temple was huge and the material requirements would have definitely met with unexpected delays.

3. Opposition from outside (Criticism)
Haggai 2:5 mentions God’s message to His people “Do Not Fear!”. Ever wondered why God is telling His people not to fear.

Consider this. Why does a seemingly smooth activity within the Church or in work suddenly turn messed up? Why everything that is moving in the right direction has people falling out, afflictions coming by and roadblocks that suddenly seem huge (like a mountain)? Because, for every work of God, satan will try and bring obstruction.

4. Opposition from within (pessimism, comparison, and faulty expectations) Ezra 3:11-13
The youngsters celebrated the building of the new Temple. But the old timers, people who had seen the past glory of Solomon’s Temple, wept when they say that the temple of the present day was nothing like the past.

In church ministry and like any other task, the greatest hurt is felt when opposition comes from within. People may not intend to hurt you, but it just happens. Like it did in the temple.

Pessimism, comparison, and faulty expectation are like three musketeers that go hand-in-hand. Imagine when you go tell someone who is serving in ministry ‘hey, you know what, that church or that person is very anointed.’ However, what you are implying (even though it is not intentional) is ‘Hey..you know that this church or you, as an individual, lack anointing or you need to be doing something differently’. Imagine, what sort of encouragement you are giving the pastor or the serving team members?

5. Mistaken perspective (wrong view) of success. Haggai 2:7-9
People were expecting the Temple to have all the gold and silver they could put in. A grand memorial, an extravagant place of worship, a monument to the Lord! Seeing things through the human perspective can be really demoralizing. There was nothing in the present situation that made the builders of the Temple see the objective in sight.

We need to have God’s perspective of a situation. Do you know, this is the very temple in which Jesus (the promised Messiah) set foot after many years (over 500 years later).

The true measure of success is in the light of eternity.

What is really touching to see in the passage of Haggai 2:1-9, is how our Lord understands and feels the discouragement of His people. It is not that He criticizes them but rather provides His encouragement.

Here are the 5 Keys to overcoming discouragement:

Key#1 Be Strong! (Haggai 2:4a)
People become weak when they turn their focus off the Lord and instead look to the slow, disappointing progress at hand. Think how much our attitude affects our ability to persevere. The Lord asks His people to be strong!
What does He mean by this?

2 Corinthians 3:5 says “Not that we are adequate in ourselves to consider anything as coming from ourselves, but our adequacy is from God”. The Lord asks us to find strength in Him. Through His strength, we can achieve anything.

Philippians 4:13 “I can do all this through Him who gives me strength”. All we need to do is place our faith in Him.

Let’s recount the story of the 12 spies who went to look at Canaan land. Only Joshua and Caleb came back with a positive report. That is because they didn’t rely on their own might but on the strength of the Lord. That is the first key to overcoming disappointment.

Key#2 Work! (Haggai 2:4b)
While having the right perspective and being strong is good, it isn’t sufficient by itself. In Haggai 2:4, the Lord advises His people to be strong and work. James 2:22 says “Do you see that faith was working together with his works, and by works faith was made perfect?”. Joshua and Caleb had to be strong, not just by believing but also by putting their faith into practice. They had to go into the land and physically fight off the giants.

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:13.

When you ask for God’s strength, you start out believing that you already have it. By putting your faith into action, you are allowing God’s divine strength to work through you. By this alone, people will see and marvel that it is not the hand of man, but the Hand of the Lord on your life.

Key#3 His Presence will be with You
God’s presence is sufficient for us. Haggai 2:4-5 says that the Lord of Hosts (Lord of the armies) is with us. Even Prophet Moses recognized the significance of the Lord’s presence. In Exodus 33:15 Moses said to the Lord “If your Presence does not go with us, do not send us up from here.” God’s presence assures victory in every situation in our lives.

Key#4 God reminds us of His Promises (Haggai 2:5)
God refers to the promise He made with the nation of Israel when He brought them out of Egypt. A God who honors His promises, He reminds the people of the promise He has made. We are fortunate that we worship an unchanging, loving and merciful God who doesn’t change and forget His promises.

In fact, the Lord has made a better covenant with us now. Hebrews 8:6 says “But now hath He obtained a more excellent ministry, by how much also He is the mediator of a better covenant, which was established upon better promises.” Jesus has sealed this New Covenant with His own precious blood and given us the indwelling of the Holy Spirit as promised in John 14:16 “And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever”.

All we need to do is remember what God has promised us. That will give our lives purpose and the power to pursue our projects.

Key#5 God encourages us through His prophecies
The prophecies mentioned in Haggai were not to just show the future but also to strengthen, encourage and uplift the faith of His people. Haggai 2:6-8 is directly quoted in the New Testament in Hebrews 12:26-27 as a reminder of the supreme Power and Authority of God. When He says that silver and gold are His, the Lord is saying that He is capable of bringing in all the wealth that is necessary to rebuild the temple.

Finally, in verse 9 of Haggai chapter 2 God speaks that He will give peace. A quick reference to the fulfilment of these prophecies can be seen in Ephesians 2:17 “He came and preached peace to you who were far away and peace to those who were near.” and Romans 5:1 “Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ”.

My dear friends…brothers and sisters in Jesus Christ, be encouraged in your work for Him, knowing that your work for the Lord is not in vain.

“Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.” 1 Corinthians 15:58.

Stay Blessed!

The Eagle Christian — Prophet Tony Mathias

A tiny eaglet fell out of its nest in a tall tree near a farm, & landed in a chicken coop. He found himself surrounded by little chicks & thought they were his siblings. He grew up like them, learning to scratch for insects & peck at the seeds the farmer scattered in the barnyard. The young eagle’s wings & feathers began to grow, but it never thought it was different from its chicken family.

One day an older eagle, soaring in the sky, spotted it in the barnyard. The eagle swooped down & had a face-to-face talk with the young eagle. “You are not a chicken,” he said, “You are an eagle. You are not supposed to hop around the ground looking for bugs. This is not your life. You are meant to fly in the heavens & ride the wind.” These words opened the little eagle’s eyes to who it really was & gave him the desire to join his new friend above in the clouds. It spread his wings & after a few attempts it lifted off and flew to the nearest tree. With each attempt, it flew higher & farther away. Soon it mounted up with the wind & disappeared in the vast deep blue sky.

Are you living up to your God-given spiritual potential? Are you soaring with Elect Eagles or scratching around with Chicken Christians? “ …those who wait for the Lord expectantly shall renew their strength; they shall lift their wings, rise up close to God as eagles rise up to the sun; they shall run and not be weary, walk and not faint or become tired.” Isaiah 40:31

Joseph waited years for his breakthrough Genesis 37-41 Potiphar’s wife lied about him, he was thrown into prison. Pharaoh’s butler forgot him and he continued in prison. Yet he kept trusting God and became 2nd to Pharaoh. Moses waited for 40 yrs before God used him to deliver the Israelites [Exodus]. – You are never too young or old to do anything important. God is not concerned about your age. He is more concerned about your availability and willingness to obey Him.

David waited for 15 yrs before he became King of Israel: 1,2 Samuel though he was anointed King 15 yrs. earlier. During the interim time of waiting, he continued to worship and trust God in a time of great hardship and King Saul’s attempts to kill him.

What happens to those waiting expectantly for the Lord? – They will ascend! How? – Close to God over storms of life by riding the wind of the Spirit with tireless energy, just like eagles rise up to the Sun soaring over storms by riding the wind with great energy. “The joy of the Lord is your strength” Nehemiah 8: 10. “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me” Philippians 4:13. Christians are called to be Eagle Christians, but many live like chickens searching for worms with a mindset that resists change in their comfort zone. By doing this they hinder God’s plan for their .lives – their problem? – Complacency. They resist change.

The Eagle is a very active bird. “As an eagle stirs up her nest, flutters over her young, spreads out her wings, takes them and bears them on her wings.” Deuteronomy 32:11 The mother eagle watches her eaglets in the nest till they are fully feathered and sufficiently mature. Then she “stirs the nest” practically tearing it up making it uncomfortable for her little ones to stay on. She then trains them to fly.

Lately, have you found your nest, comfort zone being stirred, threatened? – job, career, family, church, potential… Wondering what’s happening to your life? Are you one who doesn’t like changes? Are you uncomfortable and worried about it? Did you consider it may be God stirring your nest? That’s His way of telling you that you’ve stayed too long in the nest and He doesn’t want His eaglets to be nest dwellers all their life. His eaglets are meant to fly. So are you!

God has a plan and purpose for your life. Get out of your comfort zone! Just as Mother Eagle spreads her wings and commands her eaglets to step out on them firmly grasping a feather in their beak. In the same way, God trains us by spreading His Word before us commanding us to step on it, grasping firmly to God’s promises in obedience. He has given us the Bible, His manual for life! Just as Mother Eagle watches her little ones in training making sure they don’t fall to the ground when they lose their hold on her feathers. And if they do she lifts them up on her wings to try again. Even so, God watches His own in training to keep them from falling when they lose hold on His promises. If they fall He lifts them up to try again.

Church, you are not chicken scratching the ground searching for bugs and small things. You are Eagle Christians. You are meant to fly and soar in the heavens. You are to think big and set your goals high and achieve them, to dream the impossible dream because you are the children of the King. You have to leave your legacy behind that you passed through this earth once, find God’s plan and purpose for your life and do it. So that your heart will be delighted when you hear the King of heaven say: “Well done thou good and faithful servant!” “He who began a good work in you will carry it onto completion…” Philippians 1:6.

Boost Your Confidence In God’s Spoken Word — Rachel Mathias

Deborah the prophetess – Judge has been cited in this article as a prime example to boost our confidence in God’s spoken word and watch the amazing results.

Deborah placed her confidence in Yahweh Elohim, the God of Israel, because she heard from Him and obeyed Him. She trusted in God alone and His plan for victory.

Consider, if the Lord has spoken will He not show up, will He not bring His words to pass? He will surely keep His Word. His promises are Yes, and Amen! Isaiah 46:11; Numbers 23:19. 2 Corinthians 1:20. The Master says: “My sheep hear My voice and they follow Me.” John 10:27 – All we need to do is follow the Lord closely, follow-after His Will – His ready plan for our lives.

Deborah did exactly that – she followed God and obeyed His command. This brought deliverance and victory to the Israelites. The battle was won, the Canaanites were defeated. She trusted in God and had confidence in His Word. She stepped into her calling as a prophetess, spokesperson, before the leader – ruler, with the message God had given her, assuring him of success and capture of the enemy. Judges 4:4-7

Deborah, the prophetess, was a judge of Israel. She held court between Ramah (elevated) and Bethel (house of God) in Mount Ephraim where Israelites came from all over the country so she could rule their cases. Deborah was also given the title of prophet, an acknowledgement that she was inspired by God in ruling the Israelite community. So we see that in addition to being a judge she was a prophetess, used to win wars, battles, sing victory songs, lead the people out of enemy-clutches, deliver the oppressed, lead as God’s spokesperson, speak to rulers and leaders, prophesy-speak as an oracle of God. She sang a victory song giving praises to the God of Israel Judges 5:1-5.

As Deborah would sit under the palm tree between Ramah and Bethel in the mountains of Ephraim and receive insight and inspiration, likewise where we sit and pray does have great significance.

This sharing is meant to encourage all Christians, especially women to place their confident trust in the Lord. From Deborah we learn that God can accomplish great things through people willing to be led by Him. Trusting in God can make the ordinary in our lives extraordinary. We can expect God to bring us before great, powerful, influential people in society, at our workplace, marketplace or amidst family members to deliver a word of encouragement, speaking confidently as God has spoken to us.

Prophetic Alert — Pastor Lynette Mathias

prophetic-alert2A timely prophetic warning, when confirmed, can be a great blessing to a church, a leader or an individual. But we need wisdom in sharing the same. If done unwisely it could cause harm or offense.

A prophet needs to engage in prayer to reaffirm or confirm the prophetic warning whether it be of the Holy Spirit, and determine God’s purpose in it before delivery. Waiting on the Holy Spirit can bring insight and clarity regarding the prophetic warning. Intercessors with a gift of discernment need to ensure its authenticity and pray in line with God’s purposes regarding it. (Matthew 6:10)

The prophet needs wisdom in sharing the prophetic warning at the right time to the right recipients – person, church or leader, to avoid offense or harm. Being of a sensitive nature it needs to be weighed shared or withheld to an opportune time in the privacy of the individual or with congregational openness.

This prophetic alert must be delivered with humility which would leave the person delivering the prophetic warning open to the word being assessed. (1 Corinthians 14:29).

If the prophetic warning concerns the church, it should be detailed with an attitude of love and honor for the church, its vision, and leadership.

God bless!