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Specificity


Isaiah 58: 6-9

Is this not the fast that I have chosen: To loose the bonds of wickedness, To undo the [c]heavy burdens, To let the oppressed go free, And that you break every yoke? 7 Is it not to share your bread with the hungry, And that you bring to your house the poor who are [d]cast out; When you see the naked, that you cover him, And not hide yourself from your own flesh? 8 Then your light shall break forth like the morning, Your healing shall spring forth speedily, And your righteousness shall go before you; The glory of the Lord shall be your rear guard. 9 Then you shall call, and the Lord will answer; You shall cry, and He will say, ‘Here I am.

 

Matthew 17:21

However, this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting.”

 

Surrendered by One House (featuring Amanda Cook, Mitch Wong, Roosevelt Stewart)

 



Happy Nineteenth Day of Thanks Everyone!

 

Today I give thanks for specificity. I love clarity (most times) and the minute details of a situation/thing. However, we know that often times in life, we don't always have complete clarity on why something has occurred. Often times, we don't always understand why God is telling us to do a specific thing. At the time it seems unnecessary and gruesome; it may even feel like punishment instead of something that is for your good. But, if we are patient, we will understand the situation all in time. We will even realize that God will work everything out completely for our good. Trust me, I know.

 

Several years ago I was sitting in a church service. The pastor walked up to me and asked me if I was doing okay. I said that I was fine. He asked me the question again two more times. I started to question him and replied, "I think I'm okay but perhaps you know something I don't." He then begin to reveal something about my life. He said, "the enemy has been attacking you intensely in the area of marriage for the last seven years. You were supposed to be married seven years ago." As shocked as I was, I really wasn't.  I had met and dated some great male candidates but it never resulted in anything, even when we had the greatest of relationships. Over the course of my adult life, I would always have these weird dreams where my husband and sometimes my husband and son would be on life support in the dreams. I would wake up and ask God what those dreams meant. I would continue praying for my future marriage and family as I had always done since I was a teenager asking God to break the chain causing my future family to be in bondage.

 

Shortly after my encounter with that pastor, I was talking to a friend on the phone. Her daughter, who I believe at the time was seven years old and who has the gift of prophesy, came in the room and shared in all seriousness that God shared with her who her future husband was going to be. 

I said, "wait a minute. What? God just shared with you the details of who your future husband is?" My friend's daughter said "yes" and begin to describe in detail who and what the Lord showed her. I became really annoyed and said to my friend, " I am so mad right now! When I was 18 or 19, I would pray so heavily for my future marriage and ask God to reveal to me who my husband was. I spent years praying and nothing. When I realized that God wasn't focused on it and didn't want it to be my focus, I stopped praying about it.  And here your daughter is at seven years old and God is already revealing to her the same stuff I was praying and asking for when I was twice her age. She wasn't even asking for that revelation!" 

My friend burst out laughing at me. Of course, I did not find anything I was saying funny at all and said "why in the world are you laughing?" When she finally got her bearings, she said, "God hasn't told you who your future husband is because you know him already." I said, "that is not funny. None of the men that I know  would make the marriage cut at all." She starts hollering and laughing again and said, "just watch, it's someone you know." I literally said to the Lord, "I am not playing. I want to know who my future husband is. If you can tell a seven year old that information, and you are not a respecter of persons, surely you can do the same for me!" 

That night before I went to bed, I prayed for God to reveal the information I asked of Him, however He wanted to reveal it. That night as I was dreaming, one of my friend's faces came to me clearly while I was asleep. Usually when that happens, I know that my friend is in trouble and needs prayer. So when I woke up from my sleep, I begin to pray for my friend and committed to reach out to see what was happening with him.  I said to God in my prayers that morning, "I'm still waiting for you to reveal who my husband is." The next night, I lifted the same concern in prayer and asked God to reveal my future husband to me. I went to sleep and once again, my friend's face pops up as I'm sleeping. I wake up again and pray for him. I literally say to God, "what has he gotten himself into this time that he needs this much prayer." I covered him in pray again and committed again to reach out to check on him. That night, I prayed to God about my future husband again and said, "what's the hold up in you telling me who this man is? I want to know!" I go to sleep for the third night and my friend's face is once again clear as day in my dream. 

I wake up and say, "God why do keep showing me him and not my future husband like I'm asking for. Whatever his issue is, I covered him in prayer already. Does he need more prayer on this issue?"  

In that instant, the Lord had what I call a Job moment with me. He said to me, "you have asked me to tell you who your husband is and for the last three nights I've showed you who he is and you have ignored me. Just because it's not what you expected or wanted doesn't mean that I haven't given you what you asked for."  I got fresh with my mouth and said, "well can you throw that fish back in the sea because it seems like you just completely ignored everything that I've told you I wanted and asked for during the last twenty plus years of my life. He has characteristics that are on my intolerable list! How is it even possible that you want him for me!"

 

I was so annoyed and angry!!!! I thought to myself, I spent all these years praying for him. I guess the Lord was just as annoyed with me for my reckless thoughts towards Him. The Lord spoke to me again and said, "you see how you are? You spent so much time demanding that you know something immediately and you can't even handle the truth of the revelation. Do you now prefer for me to have waited until I cleaned up the gift to show you what it is? I was holding the information for a reason. And no, I wouldn't give him to you 'as is' in his present state! I'm a Father who only gives good gifts to my children!"

 

At the moment, I was wishing that I had taken back demanding that the Lord reveal the information to me. I couldn't handle it! I remember my friend's howling laughter after she said "God hasn't revealed it to you because it's someone you know." She was right. God had taken particular care in not disclosing that information because He knew I'd run the other way and not be pleased. 

(This is why timing is everything and paying attention to details is so important.) I was devastated for quite some time and kicking and screaming over the revelation. I never told the person what the Lord revealed to me. I didn't want to manipulate, control or influence his feelings towards me in any way, shape, or form. To be honest, at that time, I didn't want anything about that revelation to come to pass because I couldn't see my friend beyond who he was at that current moment. But, I still maintained my friendship with him and always covered him in prayer.

 

A few years later, our friendship completely fell apart. So many disastrous and disappointing things happened. It was heartbreaking to see that after all the years we poured into such a great friendship, the friendship would be destroyed by lies and deceit. I didn't want to talk to or see him ever again. I was crying to God, "how could you ever have wanted him for me? Look at what he's done to destroy our friendship? This couldn't be part of your plan for me?" I would cry for whole nights completely devastated by the loss of our friendship and the deceit that took place. I would beg the Lord to help me get him completely out of my mind and my system. I even wanted the automatic response of calling him to tell him my good news or a victory, like most of us do with our best friends, to be completely erased from me. I wanted no parts of anything to do with him. I spent months healing myself and ridding him from my system and got a text from him months later that sent me back into oblivion.

 

One day, I was praying and crying out before the Lord so intensely that the Lord put me to sleep and begin to show me a three part dream of my future that involved who He told me was my future husband. I woke up asking the Lord, "what was that?" He replied, "your future. It doesn't seem like it now, but when I clean him up, he is going to be everything that you need and want. I haven't forgotten about any of the things that you've asked me for in a husband. He is it in seed form. Melissa, I'm a promise keeper. Right now, I need you to contact him and tell him that you forgive him." I started to protest, "do you want me to say it out of obedience to you? Because I don't feel that or forgive him for what he did." I even tried to get slick with the Lord and pretend that I didn't have his contact information anymore. In my raging fit, I erased all of his contact information from all of my devices. For some reason I couldn't erase his email, after trying for almost an hour, because it was in a cloud somewhere. The Lord said, "who do you think it was that didn't allow you to erase his email from your contacts. You do have his information. Tell him that you forgive him now." I went to my computer and wrote one line "I forgive you and surrendered it" and sent it to him. A few seconds later. I got an email back stating "I just woke up from a dream about you and immediately got your email. I'm in Africa now." I thought it was crazy and wild that we both had just woken up from dreams about each other and were on completely different continents. Only God does that!

 

God had walked me through a very difficult journey of forgiveness towards him. I finally arrived at a place of complete emotional healing and I truly forgave him. We spent several more years going through tumultuous dealings with each other, but we were at least cordial and talking to each other. He would have moments where he confessed how he felt about me and then I wouldn't hear from him for months. I was over all of it and was ready to be done! But, I was still being obedient to the Lord, as He was guiding me on how to behave and respond in our interactions. 

I had a heart to heart talk with God and sincerely asked if I could be released to move on with my life in 3 years, if nothing happened to mend or move this relationship into what He said it would be. You can imagine my surprise (and annoyance) when this year the Lord told me that every Tuesday I was to fast for marriages, including my future marriage, and pray for my future husband and men in general. I didn't understand why I had to put more prayer and fasting to this crazy situation. But, if you know me, even if I don't like it or understand it, I'm going to be obedient to the Lord. Initially, I started fasting and praying with a grumbling, complaining heart, which nullified my obedience. I had to repent for that. If I was going to nullify my fasting and praying, why do it in the first place? I also realized that I was giving myself a front row, center seat to wander and die in the wilderness, without walking into my promise, just like the Israelites did as they complained.

As I got serious about my fasting and praying, God revealed so many things to me. He brought back to my attention the four generational anti-marriage curse that had been on all the woman in my family.  He gently reminded me of the King James versions of Matthew 17:21 and said you're fasting and praying because this curse and its root will only be broken and "come out by prayer and fasting." I had to break and renounce the original covenant that was made with the enemy, with the name and by the blood of Jesus, which allowed that anti-marriage curse to operate in the bloodline of my family in the first place. Without me knowing in advance, every Tuesday's prayer and fasting was breaking that spirit off of me and my descendants’ lives and clearing a path for healthy marriages to come and exist.

God is so much more amazing than we can imagine. First of all, He puts up with us and forgives us our "wretchedness." He calculates, plans and strategizes the best course for our lives and put us on that path, even if we are kicking and screaming as we go. As he declared to me, He is a good father that gives good gifts to his children.

Throughout the years, I have faithfully followed ALL the Lord's instructions concerning marriage preparation. I believe that obedience to the Lord aligns me to be recompensed, and to receive blessing, favor, and honor among other things from Him. I have no idea if this man will step up to the plate, on his own accord, to do and be whom God says He will be in my life. But I have faith in God to know that He is a Promise Keeper and that He gives good gifts to his children. God's perfect will always prevails in our life.

Three years ago today, I asked the Lord if I could be released to move on with my life, if I had done all I was instructed to do by Him for the door of marriage to be a possibility with this man and this man did not rise to the occasion. I believe without a shadow of doubt that the Lord said that I could be released. 

I'll keep you posted and let you know what happens.

 

Today as we give thanks for specificity, I ask that you evaluate/assess the steps you have taken to achieve a particular goal in your life. Are they in alignment with what the Lord has spoken to you? Have you been careful to be obedient to the Lord and observe every detail of the instructions He has given you? When it is all said and done, no matter what the outcome, can you say that you have done all that you were supposed to do and could do? If so, step into the rest and favor of the Lord. If not, go back and get things right.

 

Love Ya,

 

Have a Great day of Thanks!

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