The Rise & Roar of Sons & Daughters

“And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God, That I will pour out of My Spirit­ on­ all ­flesh;­ Your ­sons­ and­ your­ daughters ­shall­ prophesy,­Your young­ men­ shall see visions, Your old men shall dream dreams. And on My menservants and on My maidservants, I will pour out My Spirit in those days; And they shall prophesy.”  Acts 2:17&18

The Holy Spirit is laying the grounds for a new global awakening in Christianity. From the very beginning of the outpouring at Pentecost in the upper room, the Spirit of God has been igniting sons and daughters with fire, power, prophecy, dreams and vision that are far too compelling to ignore. This Third Great Awakening will surpass anything you and I have ever conceptually imagined possible. God says, He will pour out His Spirit on all ­flesh.

Sons & Daughters
Our Foundation and Identity in The Kingdom

How important is the knowledge of our Sonship and identity? I believe the foundation of our identity for believers is everything. The revelation of Christ in us is one of the most profound and transformational gifts. It is key to victory. However, I also believe that it’s not enough to have the understanding of Christ in us. This is not a mental ascent; this has to be experiential and ever-increasing. We must be firmly established in our identity in God as sons and daughters.

Many Christians are engaged in a real battle when it comes to their identity. They deal with an orphan spirit or an orphan mentality— a way of thinking and seeing themselves apart from the family of God. Those engaged in this battle generally struggle with rejection, approval, acceptance, self-worth, value, and esteem. They fight with a sense of belonging or fitting in which leads to a constant need of proving one’s self through competitiveness and comparison. The Apostle Paul writes, when we measure and compare ourselves with one another, this is carnal and unwise (see 2 Corinthians 10:12).

In the natural, there are many gifts that we are supposed to receive from a Father that builds a quality life: identity, inheritance, safety and security. In the Jewish culture, when a boy crosses the threshold into a young man they celebrate what is called, “Bar Mitzvah,” which means “son of the commandment.” Generally, this happens around the age of thirteen where there is a large family celebration. Declarations over the son are given from his father and mother affirming of his identity and coming into manhood (becoming an adult). It’s interesting that there’s is no biblical account recorded of Jesus’ Bar Mitzvah until He enters the waters of the Jordan River to be baptized by John at the age of thirty.

“When He had been baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened to Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting upon Him. And suddenly a voice came from heaven, saying, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”Matthew 3:16&17

In this transitional moment, Jesus receives his Bar Mitzvah and declaration by His Heavenly Father, “This is my Son, whom, I love and I am well pleased in!” Here we see the proclamation and the gifts of identity, approval, acceptance, value, esteem. The Apostle Paul writes, “For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, ‘Abba, Father’, The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs--heirs of God and joint heirs­ with­ Christ,­if­ indeed­ we­ suffer­ with­ Him,­that­ we­ may­ also­ be­ glorified­ together” (Romans 8:15-17).

This is transformational. This is our identity. I think it’s very notable to see when “spirit of bondage” is mentioned here that it’s a small “s”, and when Paul writes “Spirit of adoption” there’s an emphasis on the large “S”, as in Holy Spirit — who has all authority. Do you see that?

The phrase “Abba, Father” is an affectionate Aramaic term which means, “Daddy, Daddy” or “Papa.” We are in a family, joined in union to the heart of the Father as sons and daughters. The Spirit bears witness and causes our identity to come alive in our spirit that we have become children of God. Not only children, but heirs of God with Jesus (v.16,17), whether they are biological or adopted, have the same benefits of provision and inheritance.

I love that word, “benefits.” Psalm 103:2-5 says, “Praise the Lord,my­ soul,­and­ forget­ not ­all ­his ­benefits­—­who ­forgives­ all ­your ­sins ­and ­heals ­all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love ­and­­ compassion,­­who­ satisfies­ your ­desires ­with ­good ­things ­so ­that ­your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.”

No Slaves & No Orphans

Take your time to absorb these passages in your spirit and your soul that are being given in this chapter. They are transformational, and key to your identity and victory as a child of God. Our Father doesn’t want us alienated, wandering in a orphan spirit and way of thinking. You are loved and cherished.

“But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, that we might receive the adoption as sons”. “And because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying out, “Abba, Father!” Therefore you are no longer a slave but a son, and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.” Galatians 4:4-7

When it comes to your personal identity with God, how do you perceive yourself? Be honest. Are you a stranger, a sinner saved by grace – doomed to always fail? Are you a slave or servant? Or are you a son or daughter? The only way to properly perceive yourself accurately is to agree with what your Heavenly Father has spoken over your life. “Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! Therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know Him. Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is.” 1 John 3:1-2

The word repent means, “to change your way of thinking; going one direction and changed to another.” Repentance is a beautiful gift of God that brings us into change and transformation. Repentance is the changing agent of God’s grace and gives us access into the heart of God and empowers us to see ourselves accurately. A large part of repentance is agreeing with God and His Word regarding Who He is and who we are in Him. This where our minds are renewed and transformed.

“To them God willed to make known what are the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles: which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.” Colossians 1:27

Is that epic? It’s mind boggling that the dream of God was to live and dwell within us. What a dream! What a God! Christ is in you. This is a part of the metamorphosis that occurs through His Spirit and His Word.  

“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present ­your ­bodies ­a ­living ­sacrifice, ­holy, ­acceptable ­to ­God, ­which ­is ­your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.”  Romans 12:1&2

To “be conformed to the world” is to be lost as orphans — not knowing whom their Father is — disconnected, alone, abandoned, lost, wandering. You and I are called to be transformed, an awakening to this revelation that we are sons and daughters of the Living God. This changes everything. This is the real hope and beauty of life. Friend, you are not an orphan. You are a chosen, beloved, celebrated son and daughter in the kingdom with honor, privilege, benefits andinheritance. We are being transformed continually by the Holy Spirit as He reveals to us this unfolding mystery that we are in God and God is in us. We are one with God.

“And all of us, as with unveiled face, [because we] continued to behold [in the Word of God] as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are constantly being transfigured­ into ­His­ very­ own ­image ­in­ ever-­increasing ­splendor ­and from one degree of glory to another; [for this comes]
from the Lord [Who is] the Spirit. “  2 Corinthians 3:18 | Amplified Version

Before we move onward, I want to encourage you to look at the difference of living as a son verses living as a slave. Remember, God desires this revelation as sons and daughters to transform us. It would surely be enough if this revelation were only intended for just ourselves - for our personal victory and freedom. Transformation always begins in the heart and spirit of an individual. But as we move forward, we become awakened to a grander vision from our Father. Transformed sons and daughters will transform their cities, regions and nations. Take a moment to identify the belief of Sons and Daughters in the Kingdom vs. the perspective of Slaves and Orphans:

Sons and Daughters:
Believe and experience the unconditional love of the Father. Experience Sonship as an heir, based on their position to the Father. Rest in the security of their Father’s provision. Are still loved when they fall short. Are stewards of what the Father entrusts to them. Love their Dad’s character. Values are totally based on position as a Son and Daughter. Experience Love. Receive gracefully. Recognize sins and have a repentant heart. Live from the heart. Believes they are loved. Lives a godly Kingdom lifestyle defined by grace and redemption. Live under God’s authority.

Slaves & Orphans:

Believe they must perform to gain the Father’s love. Believe becoming an heir is tied to performance, not their position as children. Believe provision is only through performance. Believe they deserve judgment when they fail. Believe they are entitled to a share of anything they do. Resent their Dad’s character. Values are only based on what they do and how well they do it. Love is earned. Expect an entitlement. Are self-righteous, prideful. Live from legalism. Believe they are defective, producing shame. Have a worldly kingdom perspective defined by performance and posturing. Reject God’s authority.

We are a sons and a daughters, and because our identity as children of God has been firmly established, we are called and commissioned to make a global impact to whatever sphere of life that The Holy Spirit sets on fire within our souls. In the kingdom, sons and daughters live in a culture of revelation, prophecy, faith and supernatural activity. In my travels, I like to use Southwest Airlines. Southwest’s slogan is: “You are now free to move about the country.” I like to say, “You are now free to move about The Kingdom.” Who knows the dreams that God has dreamed for you? I know you want to discover those dreams and live in those adventures.

Remember the epic prophecy from Joel that the Apostle Peter announced on the day of Pentecost as the Holy Spirit was being poured out? God says in the last days: “I­ will­ pour­ out­ of­ My­ Spirit­ on­ all­ flesh;­ Your­ sons­ and­ your­ daughters ­shall prophesy, Your young men shall see visions, Your old men shall dream dreams. And on My menservants and on My maidservants I will pour out My Spirit in those days; And they shall prophesy.” (Acts 2:17&18)

Let me say again, in the kingdom, sons and daughters live in a culture of revelation, prophecy, faith and supernatural activity.

Be Free & Be True At Your Core

Years ago, a prophetic friend spoke a life-giving word into my heart that has helped me navigate and walk in freedom when it comes to our identity and the call of God. He encouraged me not to be limited to one title and one function. He told me that I would wear many hats in life and never to be bothered by those who tried to put the limitations of titles and restrictions upon me, those that said I could only do this, or could only do that. He encouraged me to stay free and just function in freedom to what the Father was calling me to do in every season of life.

Some people are locked in a prison of the identity that other people have tried to create for them. It’s so unfortunate. Regardless of the boxes and smallness that people try convince you of or peddle stories to others about you, you have to learn how to move in your own direction, following your heart and following the Holy Spirit. I’ve been told that I’m only a pastor. I’ve been told I’m only an evangelist. I’ve been told that I’m only a prophet or a revivalist. Truthfully, I’m satisfied with just being, Brian — a son of God. We are free to live and live boldly in who God has ordained for us to be as sons and daughters. There is great freedom in the kingdom for us all, to live creatively and express the nature of God.

You have to be faithful and true in your core to who you really are and who you are becoming, not what others say you can do or not do. You and I are not called to fulfill the vision that other people have for us. We are called to fulfill the vision and purpose that God has dreamed for us. God is a transforming God — an ever-increasing progressive God. He has plenty of hats that will look especially great on you. Be free to evolve, change, retool and be who you are in your heart. Give yourself room and space to rediscover yourself as well. There are giftings that are within that perhaps you haven’t yet begun to tap into. The Holy Spirit longs to be your partner and bring those gifts to the forefront.

When I was young, all I wanted to do was be a rock ‘n’ roll drummer. I wanted to write epic songs that everyone would sing, shock people with massive drum solos and rock — loudly! Drumming was the only “skill” that I really excelled at and it set me apart. It was my gift. Everyone knew that I was “the drummer.” Everyone in my hometown and region would talk about me being the drummer and that became my identity. I wasn’t dreaming about leading people, writing books, being a prophetic voice, pioneering churches or pastoring people. I never saw myself as a leader. But God did, and His call is what actually set me apart.

Friends, you can wear the hat of ministry, you can wear the hat of marketplace and entrepreneurship. You can certainly impact more than one mountain. God can use you in government as sure as He can use you in the arts community. God can use you to rescue lives in a crack house and use you to be a voice in the White House. There are no limits in God. I want to encourage you, you need to be reminded that you can be all and become all that God sets on fire inside of your heart and your soul. And when it comes to those with small thinking that look to handcuff you with limitations because they’re aggravated by freedom, just remember something, they didn’t want to see you blessed in thefirst place. Just tip your hats, smile humbly and be true.

Kingdom Friends — Champions

The gift of covenant friends is a treasure. I pray God gives you covenant friends who will burn with you and run passionately with you to ignite our world with His presence and power. The gifts and blessings that we pray for in life actually come to us in the packages of other people. Our job is to recognize and discern when those gifts are presented, so that we become the recipients of God’s grace and goodness, in and through them. May you identity your band of brothers or your family of fire. Those that believe they just need God alone, they are terribly mistaken. You need God, that’s obvious, butyou also need kingdom friends in your life. I pray you find a company of burning hearts, just like yours.

You need friends in your life that are courageous, mature, spiritual and generous. You need true friends that can pray with you and for you, celebrate God’s greatness in you and lift you. You need friends that are visionaries and forward thinkers. You don’t need “friends” in your life that are jealous and envious of you, who can’t pray for you because their mouths are filled with cynical and poverty mutterings. Those that are insecure and offended at you are satisfied with average and the status quo, and they decided long ago that they were good with living small.

You need champions in your life that are dreamers, faith walkers, builders, thinkers, pioneers, lovers and risk takers. You need friends who aren’t carnal and lazy, and who aren’t comfortable with celebrating good enough. You need friends of integrity who are not only there to complement your gifts, stay faithful in the storms of life, but who also challenge you to grow upward and move forward in God, and keep the standard lifted high. When enemies or giants appears, God calls out to the champions to arise and run forward to the battle. Chose friends whose boots march along side yours to the sound and rhythmic cadence of heaven’s drum. Pursue quality life-giving friendships.

Discovering Purpose

You may be familiar with this passage from the book of Jeremiah. God says, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” The Nation of Israel was in exile and had been taken captive by Babylon for 70 years. You can imagine the defeat and hopelessness that clung to them. And yet in the midst of such great loss, God speaks through His prophet and tells them that He knows the plans, or the purpose, He has for them and it’s a future of His blessing.

This is a beautiful promise of the intension of the heart of God towards all of us. God is a God of redemption. He’s the one that liberates the captives. This word “plans” can also be properly translated “purpose.” God knows the purpose and dream that He has designed for our lives. This purpose is to give us an anchored hope and a blessed future.

When I think about God knowing the purpose He has for me, it strengthens me to place all of my trust in Him. When we think in terms of “plan,” so often we think that God has one plan for our lives and if we miss it, we could be doomed to a failing grade. When it comes to plans, this is not a passing or failing issue. God has thousands of plans that will bring you into the divine purpose that He dreamed over you before time existed. He told Jeremiah, that He knew him even before he was shaped and sculpted in his mother’s womb in the creation process (see Jeremiah 1).

God knows the purpose (not just one plan) that He has over you and in that divine purpose you discover thousands of plans to carry you there. It’s like driving in a car with a GPS. You set the GPS coordinates and it maps out the blueprint for you to arrive at your destination. Have you ever made a wrong turn with a GPS? If you have, you know that begins rerouting you immediately and starts talking, and talking, and talking to get you right back on the chosen path for your destination. It’s simple, but revelatory. God knows your purpose. You may take some wrong turns here and there. (I’m not talking about sin or willful disobedience). You may get detoured or delayed here and there. There could even be seasons that you experience ambush or get sabotaged in the journey, but rest assured, The Holy Spirit is committed to Father’s ultimate dream for your purpose. I dare you to be consumed with God and see how He will move to transform your life into the realm of the miraculous, the amazing and the extraordinary. Your purpose will continually be discovered in saying, “Yes”, to the voice of Lord. This is a life long continual conversation with the Holy Spirit leading and guiding you in the calling.

Discovering Your Roar — The Prophetic Voice

“I wish you all spoke with tongues, but even more that you prophesied; for he who prophesies is greater than he who speaks with tongues, unless indeed ­he ­interprets, ­that ­the ­church ­may ­receive­ edification.”­ 1 Corinthians 14:5

Have you ever heard the statement, “People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care?” I made this a core value many years ago, and I’ve tried to live by this throughout all my years pastoring and leading people. It’s good to show people you care. It’s good to express love through acts of kindness.

Stay with me here. For many of us, this little “live by” quote has done more harm than good. It’s muzzled your voice, stifled your wisdom, shut your mouth and shut you down, while the people you care about are starving for a good word. Yes, we need to show love. We desperately need the power of the Holy Spirit flowing through our hands in signs, wonders and miracles. But let’s not forget that the Holy Spirit is also the voice of prophesy, words of wisdom, words of knowledge and gifts of faith that cry out to be expressed with words. “Like apples of gold in settings of silver” (Prov. 25:11). That’s how the Bible describes a word fitly spoken. Carefully chosen — not carelessly spoken — words can be precious, life-giving and live-saving to the people around you.

Many years ago, as a younger minister, I started realizing that people need words. They crave to hear something genuinely prophetic, from someone removed from the absolute closeness of their situation to speak life to them. Words release destiny. It could be the young man at the pizza joint downtown who’s already lived a hard life. It could be your son or your daughter who’s losing hope with a difficult marriage. The co-worker in the office next to you who needs to know God truly cares—and that He has the power to intervene in their desperate situation.

Unfortunately, many have lost the prophetic voice — their roar. Believers are reading their Bibles, listening to podcasts, attending church, mailing finances to missionaries, but the busyness of life and the proverbial phrase “People don’t care how much you know untilthey know how much you care” has silenced many. Life is busy. You’re not going to be able to establish quality relationships with everybody and prove and affirm to them how much you care. But your consciousness and awareness of the abiding presence of the Holy Spirit within you will determine your ability to impart the life-giving words of heaven into any given situation.

Words That Release Destiny
(Taken from my book: “Unstoppable & Unquenchable Fire”)

Jesus said, “It is the Spirit that gives life...the words that I speak to you, they are spirit, and they are life.”  John 6:63

It had been a very long and challenging day. I was pastoring at the time, and thought it would be good to unwind and refresh, before heading home for the evening. I went down to Sarasota Bay Park to enjoy the ocean, some sunshine and some alone time with The Lord. As I was sitting in the grass, enjoying the breeze and a new book, a young couple got out of their car behind me and began to walk in my direction. As I looked up to see them passing by, acknowledging them, I noticed they were a very attractive couple, probably in their late 20’s, walking hand in hand.

The Lord spoke to me so clearly, “Go tell them that they are to get married. Tell them that for all the trouble and adversity that they have experienced in their young lives, that God was going to give them the ultimate comeback and raise them up victoriously, and that they would have a ministry to young couples and families.” I’m not a stranger to releasing prophetic words, but the whole “marriage” word shocked me! Its just prophecy 101 — You don’t tell people whom they’re supposed to marry. As a Pastor, I would be quick to correct or redirect anyone who gave that kind of a word at our church to a couple. I said, “Lord, for real? Do I have to tell them that?” His answer, “Yes, Son.” He was overriding my prophecy 101 principle.

I went over and approached them as they were snuggling on a park bench, enjoying the ocean view. I politely introduced myself as a Pastor in Sarasota, I told them that as I was reading my book and had seen them walking into the park and that God spoke to me a beautiful word about their lives and their future.

The moment I told them that The Lord said that they were to be married, both of them began to tremble and burst into streaming tears. The young lady gasped. Their response was quite dramatic. I humbly gave the word and told them that the Lord loved them. The young man said, “Pastor, we are Christians and this is a true miracle for us. We attend a Slavic/Russian church here in Sarasota, and we have been on a fast for the last three days, praying for clarity, if indeed it was the Lord’s will for us to get married.”

They thanked me and said they would remember and treasure this day the rest of their lives. As I walked away and made my way back to my car, I sat watching this couple crying and holding one another. It was precious to behold. I sat and wept thanking the Holy Spirit for releasing such a special gift for them in this season of their journey. There is nothing like partnering with The Lord to release His heart for others. Prophetic words release destiny. That is the roar of The Lion.

How do you find your prophetic roar? It all starts in your continual relationship with the Word of God and Holy Spirit. When the Lord is your delight and His word is your guide, you will burn with an unstoppable passion. When Jesus is your first love, you walk with the awareness that you are His hands, His love, His touch, His voice in this earth. As I said above, it is our consciousness to His abiding presence within that determines everything — our level of consecration, the miraculous, the prophetic. When you hear Him speak, believe it andact upon it. His life can flow effortlessly and words can heal. With a keen sensitivity to the Holy Spirit, you will learn the wisdom and thetiming of God—the key to “a word fitly spoken.”

“Pursue love, and desire spiritual gifts, but especially that you may prophesy. For he who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God, for no one understands him; however, in the spirit he speaks mysteries. But ­he ­who ­prophesies ­speaks ­edification ­and ­exhortation and comfort to men.” 1 Corinthians 14:1-4

What is prophecy? Prophecy at its most basic form is simply hearing God and speaking what you hear to men or women. Notice the foundation of the prophetic is love. Pursue love. The truth is, we’ll never be effective in partnering with the Holy Spirit for others until you walk in love and feel the Lord’s passion and carry His desires for others. Love is the foundation.

Look at what the Apostle Paul said above. Desire spiritual gifts. Don’t miss that. Desire to prophesy. Desire to hear God and speak what He’s communicating to you. What does prophecy do? In this passage above, Paul says it has three distinct characteristics. Prophecy edifies (which means to build up or bring structure), exhorts (life-giving, strengthening, encouragement) and brings comfort (bringing the awareness of God in their midst) to those who receive it. I pray that your heart would burn with desire to grow in the prophetic, so your roar is released to bring, hope, freedom, victory and life. What if there are words that the Holy Spirit wants you to hear and speak — to prophesy — bringing transformation to a life, a high school, a university, a city, a nation, a generation? I have good news for you sons and daughters.

“I ­will­ pour ­out­ of ­My ­Spirit ­on ­all­ flesh;­ Your ­sons ­and­ your­ daughters ­shall­ prophesy, Your young men shall see visions, Your old men shall dream dreams. And on My menservants and on My maidservants I will pour out My Spirit in those days; And they shall prophesy” (Acts 2:17,18).

Let me say it one more time, in the kingdom, sons and daughters live in a culture of revelation, prophecy, faith and supernatural activity. It’s time to ask, receive and roar.

Prophetic Justice

One night while ministering in a church in Indianapolis, we were hosting a prayer line for people with specific needs for healing. The altars were filled with several hundred individuals. After praying for a couple, I went back up on stage to make sure the ministry team wasn’t missing any. I noticed an older lady was slowly making her way up to the front of the church and got into line. As I approached, I heard the Holy Spirit say the word, “Sonnet.” That may not mean anythingto you, but I knew what a sonnet was.

A sonnet is a particular poetic form or structure that originated in Italy, but became extremely popular through the poet and playwright William Shakespeare. A sonnet’s main distinction is its pattern and structure that carries just 14 lines. The Holy Spirit highlighted 14 lines to me. I believe God has good things to say to people. He loves when we partner with Him to be a conduit of life in speaking His promises, desires and will to others. The Holy Spirit knows our language. He knows how to speak to us and draw from our database and life experiences. He is able to give us prophetic keys, enabling us to release life and healing to others.

I waited upon the Lord for a moment longer, and he directed my thoughts to Psalm 16:5&6, “O Lord, You are the portion of my inheritance and my cup; You maintain my lot. The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places; Yes, I have a good inheritance.”

Lines in scripture give a picture of inheritance, posterity and generations. I believed The Lord was showing me something profound, but honestly it took some courage and faith (spelled R.I.S.K) to give this word. I committed myself and said to her, “You have 14 grandchildren and you are not to worry as the Lord shows me every one of them will be saved and brought into the kingdom. This is your inheritance andportion!”

The woman burst into tears and began to celebrate ecstatically, giving praises to the Lord. The Pastor asked me, “Do you know this woman and her family?” I didn’t and was clearly nervous about what I had just shared. I think the Pastor was too. But the woman testified that she indeed had 14 grandchildren. They were the very reason she came forward to have prayer. She didn’t realize that the prayer line was for healing. Frankly it didn’t matter. God wanted to reward her years of prayer and intercession for her family. God has generations on his mind.

“But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light...”
1 Peter 2:9

This Blog was taken from BOLD AS LION — The Future Belongs To The Righteous

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