Kelly Elders

What’s In Your Womb?

If you have ever been pregnant or close to someone who has then you know the anticipation that comes with pregnancy. We think of all the possibilities of what the baby will look like, what they will become and whether it’s a boy or girl. It’s a very exciting time for everyone involved.

What if we could walk with the same excitement of what we are carrying today. Each one of us are full of possibilities, dreams, potential, gifts and something to give. Yet, many of us walk along in life acting as if our womb is empty. We indulge in what we want not understanding it’s feeding what’s within us. Are we consuming things that will cause healthy growth or feeding something that will debilitate the dream within us? When we recognize that we are carrying something so precious we do everything to make sure we not only have a smooth delivery but a healthy strong baby. We eat better, we try to stay fit and read everything about the process! We need to have that same way of thinking when we carry out our dreams. You are pregnant with a promise and God intends to give you something that will bless you, your family and everyone connected to that dream.

Isaiah prophesied in Isaiah 7:14 that a young virgin would give birth to a son and call him Emmanuel, God is with us. I am sure this must’ve been the craziest prophecy since it didn’t even seem possible without a man. I am sure many young girls hoped they would be the special one. Maybe they grew up dreaming they would be the chosen girl as their parents shared the prophecy with them. Generation after generation waited for one young girl to give birth to their long awaited Messiah.

At this time only one young virgin would be chosen when today we are all called to take part. We each have been given something to carry and to carry to full term. We are challenged to give birth to something assigned to each one of us individually. It has our DNA on it and God has included us in the creation of something beautiful. It was beautifully designed around you and handcrafted to only operate through you.

So be intentional about what you are carrying on the inside of you. Get fit by renewing your mind with the word of God, feed your soul and read every resource concerning your dream. Feed your mind the knowledge needed. You are well able!

Don’t Cry!

Not long after that, Jesus went to the village Nain. His disciples were with him, along with quite a large crowd. As they approached the village gate, they met a funeral procession—a woman’s only son was being carried out for burial. And the mother was a widow. When Jesus saw her, his heart broke. He said to her, “Don’t cry.” Then he went over and touched the coffin. The pallbearers stopped. He said, “Young man, I tell you: Get up.” The dead son sat up and began talking. Jesus presented him to his mother. Luke 7:11-15 Message Bible

This woman was a widow and now she was burying her only son. I can’t imagine the walk of pain she was enduring that day. All of her hopes, dreams and future were now being carried away in a coffin. Have you ever been on a walk when you feel as if the most treasured thing in your life or dream feels dead?

Have you ever had something in your life look dead? Maybe your relationship with God or your  marriage, your dream, your job or your finances? Well, Jesus says “Don’t cry.” He is the only one who can breathe life back into what is dead. Sometimes what you are willing to let die in your life can He step in and now revive.

HE NOTICES OUR PAIN

Even though we feel no one can understand the weight of what we carry or how overwhelming it can be there is always one who can, Jesus. When Jesus saw her, his heart broke and in other translations it says “he was moved with compassion”. Compassion means more than to pity or feel empathy for someone but this word “compassion” means to “suffer with”. Come along side of someone and take action. It’s one thing to see someone and feel bad for them and another thing to notice and do something about it. Jesus wasn’t feeling sorry for her but took action to change her situation. You are not alone. He notices your pain and wants to touch what is dead and bring life back to you.

HE SAYS “DON’T CRY”

Jesus tells the widow not to cry. He wasn’t saying she couldn’t show emotion but that the story wasn’t over yet. She is in the moment while Jesus knows the outcome. He wants us to surrender it to Him and believe He can resurrect anything He wants to live again. We must know that if God gave it to you then no one can take it from you.

Jeremiah 29:11 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.

HE TOUCHES THE DEAD THING

Until you are willing to surrender everything it will be your responsibility to keep it alive. Once you are willing to let it die can God can step in and revive. I am sure this mother wasn’t a terrible mom who caused the death of her son but yet he is dead. Sometimes things in our life come to a horrible end and not because we did anything wrong but He wants to be the one responsible for making it happen. Everything we have belongs to Him and He allows us to manage and enjoy those things in this life. Our children belong to God first and He has only entrusted them to us to train and enjoy. Our marriages are for our enjoyment and teach us relationship, perseverance and experience the joy of loving one another yet both individuals belong to Him first. Your promise is for your good yet to accomplish His purpose in our lives and in this earth. Your job is your livelihood but also to help further the kingdom of God. If you are struggling then you cannot add to His purpose the way He desires. He wants you to succeed more than you want to succeed. Determine to surrender today everything which looks dead and allow Him to speak life to it.

HE COMMANDS PALLBEARERS TO STOP

We must allow God to call some things in our life to stop. The attitudes, perceptions or ways of doing things that are causing us to bury our hope and our dream. We need to stop and assess the situation especially in the darkest moments and look at it as an opportunity to trust God, stand strong and look to Him. For some, this is the only time we reach out to Him when we are in desperate need of Him. Allow God to speak to the things that are causing areas in our life to die and let him do the rest. Are there things in our life carrying away the dead thing that God wants to stop the precession?

HE RAISES THE DEAD

Think about the thing in your life that looks dead or is barely breathing. Is it a ministry, a relationship or something you had wrapped in possibility and now it’s laying there as nothing. It’s in that moment when we have done everything we know to do and yet we see no growth, no acceleration or potential. You start to question everything, was it God? Did I miss it? What was I thinking? Nothing ever works out! We have to resolve that if God wants it to live, it will. Let Him touch the dead thing and decide whether it lives. It’s not a give-up attitude but a surrender attitude. Acknowledging Him to be the life giver and the only way it will happen is because of God!

THE DEAD SPEAKS

When Jesus touched the young man he sat up and spoke. What happens when the dead thing begins to speak? What will it say? When God does awake that which was dead be sure it speaks of God’s power, grace and truth. It is a testament to the God we serve and it displays His everlasting love towards us. People don’t need to see perfection in our lives. Not everyone can identify with a Christian who hides trouble or failure but someone who can go through and yet come out better can definitely give hope to the person struggling. Let your life speak to someone who feels dead and is in search for someone who can bring life.

JESUS GIVES IT BACK

We must be confident of God that He is not trying to rob us of a good life. He isn’t trying to take our joy. It is the enemy who comes to steal, kill and destroy. Once He breathes back into what is dead He presents it back to us to maintain and do again. That is what is so beautiful about God is that He wants us to have life and have it more abundantly. Stay surrendered, put all of your dependency on Him and He will always guide and navigate you through in victory! Surrender the dead thing and watch God breathe life into the dead marriage, the dead finances, the dead relationship, the dead heart and whatever else seems over in your life and watch Him resurrect!

Crippled At The Table

 

Have you ever felt so inadequate? You have all these dreams and goals yet there is this inadequacy that you struggle to develop? You’ve read, listened and tried your best to develop this area yet it’s still a struggle. What if you weren’t meant to be great at everything but at one thing? Would you need God if you were great in everything? Would you need others if you could do it all?

Maybe it’s your heart that seems so crippled with fear, worry, stress or depression? Does your heart struggle to forgive, move forward or love those who wrong you? You find yourself trying yet struggling with insecurities and every time you are inspired you can only see all of your flaws.

God invites all of us to the table, the weary, the hurting, the gifted, the inadequate, the fearful, the depressed, wherever you find yourself today. He invites us to sit and to be covered at his table. When we sit at His table He covers all of our faults, fears and yes even sin. We come imperfect before a perfect God because Jesus is our covering.

2 Samuel 9:7-10

“Don’t be afraid,” David said to him, “for I will surely show you kindness for the sake of your father Jonathan. I will restore to you all the land that belonged to your grandfather Saul, and you will always eat at my table.”

Mephibosheth bowed down and said, “What is your servant, that you should notice a dead dog like me?”

Then the king summoned Ziba, Saul’s steward, and said to him, “I have given your master’s grandson everything that belonged to Saul and his family.10 You and your sons and your servants are to farm the land for him and bring in the crops, so that your master’s grandson may be provided for. And Mephibosheth, grandson of your master, will always eat at my table.”

HE WAS INVITED WITH NO COVER CHARGE

Just as Mephibosheth never earned his place at the table. He only humbly bowed before David. He shouldn’t even have been left alive according to tradition but he remained. Most wouldn’t have considered him a threat, courageous or even worthy yet David the king invited him to eat with him every day. No matter your area of struggle you are invited by the King to take part in all He has to offer. It’s not a matter of accepting sin or weaknesses but to know that we are no longer defined by them. Where we are weak He is strong.

The table is a place of freedom, provision and acceptance. We need to make time to sit with Him and there He will give us all we need. He has prepared a place for each of us to sit but it is our responsibility to come to His table.

The Parable of the Banquet Luke 14:21

21The servant returned and reported all this to his master. Then the owner of the house became angry and said to his servant, ‘Go out quickly into the streets and alleys of the city, and bring in the poor, the crippled, the blind, and the lame.’

WHERE YOU LACK GOD LINKS

Where do you feel crippled? What area in your life makes you feel inadequate? Maybe you are really creative and have an idea to sell your items but have no business skills and you never move forward with the possibilities. Ask God to link you to the right people. We are connected for a reason and purpose. Some of the best pastors and leaders lead well not because they can do everything but are connected with people who can. The leader doesn’t have to be the most gifted or even the most talented as long as they connect themselves with those who are gifted in the areas they lack. It was God himself that said it was not good for man to be alone. We are better together than any one of us alone.

Mephibosheth didn’t have the ability to work the field or even the capacity but David connected him to those who did. He enjoyed the benefits while someone else had the ability. I believe we are being connected to the right people which will bring us into our purpose and rightful position.

Your name is on the invite but will you take time to sit with Him today? Ask God to link you to those you need and those who need you!

 

I’m Included!

GOD IS INCLUSIVE!

 

photo-1455215540020-876b3233799f One of the many reasons I love God is that He is inclusive. He is always including us into His story. We sometimes believe that God needs us to carry out His plan and purpose. The truth is God is God all by Himself. If He wanted, He could call forth an army of angels and clothe them with skin and they could save, deliver and heal as they spread the Word of God all over earth, yet He included us. He doesn’t even have to subject Himself to our economy, He is a creative God and could just make things appear, but He included us.

God is not limited to us but His desire is to move through us!

He includes us in His vision and invites us to take part. His hope is we will grab ahold of every opportunity set before us and run.

It’s time to partner with Him and carry out His purpose. We need to Change our way of giving to get and instead start giving to further His vision. He wants to share heaven, power, provision, favor and so much with us and all we need to do is link up with His plan. We bring our obedience and God brings everything else! For our own lives, we need to link up with Him and step out into whatever He has for us. I no longer have to be focused on the outcome just focused on my obedience. The outcome is up to God. He says one plants, one waters but He brings the increase or growth (1 Corinthians 3:7). We just obey by being available, willing and doing all that He says. Sometimes God isn’t so concerned with the outcome as much as He wants to see if you will do what He asks, when He asks. Don’t get me wrong God is all about increase but wants us to obey and trust in Him no matter the outcome.

I have decided to change my focus from the outcome to obedience. I don’t need to look at the outcome to decide if I have succeeded. I succeed when I am obedient to Him. How freeing is that? Don’t measure your success by your outcome but by your obedience. We tend to measure victory by how many people showed up, by how many people responded, by how much money did it produce but what if it was just about you being obedient?

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In Ezekiel 3:11 God instructed Ezekiel to go and say no matter the outcome.

“And go to the exiles, to the sons of your people, and speak to them and tell them, whether they listen or not, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD.”

Ezekiel’s obedience wasn’t based on the outcome but on his obedience to God. God wants us to be included through our obedience. He wants to fulfill His purpose on this earth and He has invited us to take part!

Choose today, to be determined to just obey and let God be responsible for the outcome!

The Power of a Woman’s Influence

Never in history has the world embraced women the way it has in the last twenty years. They have risen to business and political positions and arenas that only men have obtained. Though the wage gap is still an issue we have come a long way since the 50’s. Sometimes the church seems to be behind in this area of women leading. Very few women lead or are allowed to lead in main roles in the church. We see this predominately in denominational churches due to misinterpreting of the scriptures. Sadly, women have allowed what people say to keep them from operating in their gifts and influence. Many women didn’t allow this belief system to stop them but they found an avenue to give even while it was prohibited.

“If we look at the history of revival movements, it is clear that whenever there has been a deepening of spiritual passion and holiness in the church, and a corresponding call to evangelism, women have responded to the call to ministry even when it was culturally unacceptable for them to do so. This was true during the Second Great Awakening in the United States, which unleashed an army of women to fund missionary movements and to lead the abolitionist cause. It was also obvious in the early days of the Pentecostal revival, which mobilized women preachers to blaze trails in foreign and domestic mission fields. These women, including healing evangelist Lilian Yeomans, Carrie Judd Montgomery, Minnie Draper, Ida Robinson, Aimee Semple McPherson and Florence Crawford, started churches that still flourish today.” Ministry Today

From the very beginning of mankind we (man and woman) were given influence to be fruitful, multiply, replenish, subdue and have dominion. The serpent described as the most cunning and crafty creature used by Satan to come after mankind to stop the purpose of God. Lucifer understood the power of influence especially because while he was in heaven he was able to convince a third of the angels to leave a perfect God in a perfect environment towards rebellion. Now that’s influence!

He used this same influence to deceive Eve and used her influence to lead Adam into sin. So why didn’t he approach Adam instead of Eve? Not because she was easier to deceive but I believe he was not only out to destroy our intimate relationship and the purpose of God but to rob women of their influence. After Eve was deceived she then used her influence towards Adam to take part and then sets into motion in society and culture that women can no longer but trusted or given the responsibility of influence.

Thank God for Jesus who came back to give women their rightful place and influence! We have a responsibility to use our influence wisely and as He directs. Jesus demonstrates over and over again in the new testament of how important we are as daughters to Him. He revealed himself as Messiah for the first time to the woman at the well and used her influence to draw a city to Christ. The first ones he sent to tell of His Resurrection were two women, Mary of Magdalene and Mary. He came to liberate us, not over men but along side of one another to be the church that God always intended us to be. When we fully understand our influence and use it responsibly we will see the Church like a city on a hill that cannot be hidden (Matthew 5:14).

If you want to increase your influence let’s look to see if these are a part of your character and identify where you can grow.

TRAITS OF AN INFLUENCER: By Dr. Karen Keller

Confidence You have to know who you are and whose you are!

“The FIRST requirement for being an influential person is knowing yourself” Dr. Karen Keller

When people see how confident you are in His Word, confident in His acceptance and in the Gift He gives you and confident in your Purpose the right people will connect and follow.

2. Commitment is the underlying force behind achievement. The more determined you are to reach a specific goal, especially in the face of adversity, the more likely you will succeed.

No one likes a quitter nor will follow one.

3. Courage is your strength to face difficult circumstances (or even difficult people) head on.

When things get tough you get stronger

When things get tough you show God greater

When things get tough you shine brighter

4. Passion is the fire in your spirit for what you do. It is the expression of your enthusiasm and your eagerness, and starts the engine for your success.

Passion is like a torch, it’s meant to see, lead and light others.

5. Empowering is your ability to support peers and share knowledge with them. It also includes how you reward people who make a contribution.

Not afraid to give power away

Surround yourself with those who maybe more gifted and have more wisdom or more knowledge

Propel people forward even if they pass you

6. Trustworthiness is a high virtue and is fairly self-explanatory. It is worth noting though that of all the influence traits, this is usually the most crucial. Lose trust, and you instantly lose influence.

Can God trust you and can others trust you?

7. Likability is more than being friendly. It’s your capacity to create positive attitudes in the people around you, and focus those attitudes towards a common goal. It is how positive people feel about themselves when with you.

I love being around people who make you feel better when you leave their presence. We should all desire to be that person.

We are called to be Influencers and to influence the world around us towards Christ!

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