The Greatest Gift is God

Painting: Christ Art

Morning Devotion: The Best Gift is God, Not What He Gives or Has Created.

The best gift God gave the world, in my thoughts, is Himself. Even before the foundation of the earth God was. Before let there be light, there was the Light; the Light of the world.

God is amazing and my worst day with God surpasses my best day without Him. One of the things I prefer about God over people is God is stable, consistent, keeps His word, reliable, pure love, unselfish, and desires the best for everyone.

God does not love me today and sing my praises then tomorrow say, “I changed my mind about you.” God does not ignore me, play games, cause confusion, try to embarrass or humiliate me. God is not mean spirited or flakey (hot then cold). God is not unkind, rude, intrusive, pushy, hateful, or without compassion.

God actually cares about my dreams, hopes, desires. He cares about yours too!

God is not selfish.

God does not just show up when He has something for me to do. God is not kind to me nor does He give gifts to try to convince me to do something. He gives out of pure love.

God just loves me. God loves the world. God so loved the world He gave! See John 3:16. I do not know of anyone who loves more than God.

God, though the Creator of the Universe, does not spend each day bossing me around, “Now Erin do this, then that. Do I need to remind you that you were created for Me? You are the weaker one. I am the strong one, get low peasant and serve me. Oh and if you truly love me here are all the things you can accomplish for me before the day ends.”

God leads by love. God is kind, merciful, compassionate, holy, beautiful, gracious, serves the most, and overflowing with joy. Because God loves so well and infuses my heart with His love, I desire to love Him with all of my heart, soul, and mind. I serve because I love God. I give because I love God. I lay my life down because I love God. The love of God compels me to pour love back onto God and infuses our covenant.

Abiding in the steadfast love of God is life. Everything on this earth will pass away, yet His Kingdom will remain. Seek first the Kingdom of God and everything you need will be added unto you. Set your mind on eternal things, not the temporal which will fade away. God is the center of it all. It is His story for His glory. We are invited into the story of God.

Before mankind was, God existed. He is the Alpha and Omega, the bright and morning star. He is the reason all of life has it’s being. I truly believe He alone is worthy of our worship. I truly believe this love, His love, is the love worth most pursuing and knowing.

There is no greater love than the love God pours out on us. Some go looking for love in all the wrong places with all the wrong faces and it leads to heartache.

There is a God void inside of every human being that can only be satisfied with God. He fills to overflowing. He satisfies completely. He is the living water that quenches our thirst and satisfies our greatest cravings. Nothing in this world can surpass His great love. Nothing in this world can surpass the friendship of God and His wisdom.

If you desire a true, lasting, and eternal love, connect with Jesus. Jesus said, “No one comes to the Father except through the Son.” He gave His life as an atoning sacrifice so we could put on His righteousness and stand before a holy God. This love cost the Father His Son, and the Son His life.

What manner of love is this to lay down His life to save us while still sinners. My mind cannot fully grasp the intensity of God’s love for humanity. My question is, “Do you know Jesus?” My second question is, “Have you made Jesus the center of it all?” The love that comes through the Son of God is remarablle. It is beyond comprehension. It is available to all.

How to know Jesus: https://ithoughtiknewwhatlovewas.com/how-to-know-jesus/

God thank you for everything, especially who you are. You are amazing, beyond amazing. I cannot thank you enough. I ask that this year would overflow with your deep love. May we know the height, depth, width, and vast expanse of your love. Fill us to overflowing. Draw us into the profound corridors of your heart. Show us what real love is. Thank you for Jesus and your precious Holy Spirit. Thank you.

Photo Source: Embracing Jesus (Pinterest)

You are so deeply loved!

Erin Lamb

Thriving in a Joseph Season

Photo credit: Pinterest

Devotion: Thriving in a Joseph season. They may try to bury you, but God is going to elevate you. Overcoming sabotage and betrayal.

I love King David. I love the way God positioned David. David did not have to fight his way to the front of the line nor clamor for position. God saw David, God elevated David. David was hidden and quite insignificant in the eyes of others. People could not see what God saw when He looked at David. God saw a giant killer!

David was pursued by a jealous Saul. Yet the attempts of Saul to kill David were futile. God had a plan for David that could not be thwarted by the insecurity, jealousy, and hatred of Saul. David sought the Lord and was protected by God. He overcame not by power or might, but by God’s Spirit. He even said to Goliath, “I come in the name of the Lord.”

It is imperative when attacked to rely on God’s strength and wisdom, not our own. We overcome by His power and His strength, not our flesh.

Let’s talk about Joseph. Betrayal from family (spiritual or natural) is a far more challenging pill to swallow.

Joseph is sometimes tagged as arrogant because he shared his dream with his family. The bible does not call Joseph arrogant. He was enthusiastic. There is wisdom in understanding not everyone can hear your dream for jealousy can lead many to try to sabotage the dream. Some dreams are to hold close and pray for God to show you who’s going to come into agreement. Some may smile and try to sabotage the very thing they tell you they are prating for. We can learn from Jospeh.

God is so organized and such a great planner He already had the jealousy of Joseph’s brothers factored into the equation. He knew they would betray him. God knew Joseph would be thrown into a pit. God knew every step of the process to get Joseph from his father’s house to the Palace. God knew every detour, disappointment, attempt at sabotage, betrayal, and lie that would be spoken to Joseph that would lead to his promotion. People tried to bury Joseph, yet God placed seed in Jospeh.

When God speaks, it is seed. I love that Isaiah 55:11 says, “No word from God ever fails, it accomplishes all it is sent out to do.” When you blow seed on the land it will sink into the earth and grow. Unless that seed is eaten or plucked up, it is going to bring forth a harvest. God spoke seed to Joseph. It did not matter how many times people tried to bury him, the momentum of heaven was behind Jospeh to see the fulfillment of God’s destiny for him and a Nation.

So my encouragement to you is this, if God be for you, who can stand against you? Who can defeat the Lord, the Lord strong and mighty? Who can overthrow what God has ordained? God is more powerful than any force of a person or nature. God is the great I AM. He can open up the earth and swallow His enemies. He can part the Red Seas, raise the dead to life, move mountains. The winds and waves obey Him.

God prepares a table in the presence of your enemies. God is our feast!

You become my delicious feast

even when my enemies dare to fight.

You anoint me with the fragrance of your Holy Spirit; you give me all I can drink of you until my heart overflows,~Psalm 23:5 (The Passion Translation).

You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good. He brought me to this position so I could save the lives of many people,~Genesis 50:20.

God has a plan and it is good! No matter who comes against you, they are no match for the God who is for you. We can thrive in seasons of betrayal and sabotage by knowing God had it all worked into the equation, by knowing God is going to fulfill His word, and by knowing greater is He who is in us than He that is in the world. The champion of these stories is not David nor Joseph, it is God. God empowered both David and Joseph to overcome.

You and I can thrive instead of survive if we choose to follow Jesus and abide in Him during those challenges. God is good at turning ashes into beauty, mourning into joy, betrayal into elevation, and sabotage into promotion! Jesus is the perfect example of someone betrayed and sabotaged. If only the enemy knew his plan to destroy Jesus was going to elevate Him to the highest place in the Father’s Kingdom.

Papa, heal every soul wound on those sabatoged and hurt by betrayal. You have a plan to turn it for exceptional good. No weapon forged against your children will prosper. Heal the deep wounds and bring forth radical peace. Let your peace and comfort sink deep. Others may have tried to bury them, yet they are your seeds. Water the seed today. In Jesus powerful name, amen!

Love in Christ,

Erin Lamb

Jesus the Greatest Prophet

Morning Devotion: The Role & Purpose of a Prophet. Prophets do more than prophesy (speak forth the word and will of God), they are transformational agents who deliver solutions and reveal the heart of the Father.

The greatest prophet to walk this earth is Jesus of Nazareth. It was not Elijah, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Deborah, or Moses. Jesus is the perfect model for the prophet. If you desire anyone’s anointing, let it be Jesus.

Jesus walked in love, wisdom, and power. He knew when to be direct and when to speak in parables. He knew how to address religious leaders and hypocrites and could sit with the sinner. He overflowed with compassion and love.

There was no pride nor a critical spirit in Jesus. When He saw problems He also saw and spoke solutions. His agenda was repentance, restoration, and reconciliation of a sinful world to the Father.

Prophets are more than ones who speak, they initiate change and point to repentance. Repent for the Kingdom of God is at hand. Look and see what God is doing, get on board. Turn your ear and hear what God is saying, adjust your mind to align with His.

God is the ultimate authority and calls and commissions agents of transformation on earth. Prophets have an assignment and linked to that assignment is mandate to release, speak, and see heaven invade the earth. Prophets shift not only the spiritual atmosphere, they shift culture, organizations, and congregations.

Prophets see and/or hear the heart of the Father and their role is not just to tell people like it is. It is to provide revelation that increases intimacy with God. People are transformed by intimacy with God. Flowery words are not the same as a prophetic key that unlocks a heart which unlocks a destiny. Intimacy with God increases revelation which leads to transformation. Transformed people transform cities. Transformed cities, transform lives.

The true prophet reveals the heart and will of the Father. Jesus said, “I only do what I see the Father doing.” A true prophet is rooted in the love of God.

It is false a prophet is a fortune teller and also false their role is to hand out candy coated words that make people feel good yet never connect them with the will of God. Jesus did not do that, nor did any true prophet of the Bible. Being rude, critical, and harsh are also not the model of Jesus, nor is denying truth or repentance. Jesus did not lie nor tell people what they wanted to hear. He told them the truth in love.

The prophet wipes the smeared lenses to reveal a clearer picture of who God is, what God is highlighting, and the will of God. The prophet often stands up for God’s truth in a time of compromise and immorality. The prophet stands against oppression, idolatry, immorality, and injustice. The prophets of old were persecuted greatly for cutting against the grain and upholding God’s truth which was counter to culture.

Heaven is constantly moving towards intimacy with humanity. Heaven rejoices when one sinner repents. Heaven is looking for relationship and not second hand relationship. Prophets do not replace God, they point to God. They issue an invitation that invites humanity into relationship with the heart and will of God.

Everyone who prophesies is not a prophet. Prophets are chosen, selected, called, commissioned, and assigned by God. True prophets are not self appointed, they are God ordained. God sets up His own training program for prophets. Many prophets go on to train other prophets. Prophets do not just speak, they equip and invite others into learning and hearing the voice and heart of God.

Once again if we are to ask for anyone’s leadership in the prophetic or call of a prophet, may it be Jesus. May we desire the anointing of Jesus to flow uncontaminated. He is the visible representation of the heart and will of the Father.

Love,

Erin Lamb

God is Unlimited; Raise Your Level of Expectation!

Morning Devotion: Their limitation is not your limitation. God is unlimited. Come up higher to the level of expectation of God.

I believe God is unlimited in His ability. There are two thing that can block the flow of God in our lives, unbelief and agreement with the evil one.

God has not ceased to be God. So, the same God who raised Jesus from the dead is alive and active today. The same God who parted the Red Sea to free His people, fed them manna and quail, is able to provide today. The same God who overshadowed a young girl name Mary to birth the Messiah is able to overshadow your situation and birth the miraculous. The same God who did miracles in the past is still doing miracles today!

Who’s report will we believe and who’s report will we repeat?! I say this to you again because I want it to sink into your spirit. Who’s report will we believe and who’s report will we repeat?!

A supernatural life begins with faith and is maintained through the renewal of the mind. Where the mind goes, the body will follow. A negative and limited mindset will not produce an abundant life.

The Bible says this…

Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things,~Phil 4:8.

Think on the things of God. Meditate on the things of God. Focus on the things of God. Abide in Him and allow His thoughts to become your thoughts.

When the ship is sinking, examine what you are thinking. What is your focus? Which report are you rolling around over and over? What report are you repeating? It is not the water that surrounds the boat which causes it to capsize. It is the water that gets into the boat.

Sometimes the unbelief is fueled by a negative audience. Haters or those filled with unbelief/fear do not make great life partners. Why? God has called you to speak life and they speak death.

Death words consist of the following:

1. God is not going to do that for you.

2. Who do you think you are.

3. No one is going to support this.

4. You can’t do this.

5. God did this in the past or for someone else. It’s not for you.

Life words including the following:

1. God is unlimited!

2. God+Nothing=Everything!

3. Put your plans in God’s hands and watch them suceed.

4. It’s not impossible for God.

5. I believe in you!

6. God believes in you!

7. God’s word never fails. It accomplishes all it is sent out to do.

8. God supplies all your needs according to His riches in glory.

9. God is who He says He is and will do evetything He said He would do.

10. God’s got you!

Living an abundant life means agreeing with God. What has God said in His word? Repeat those things. Meditate on those things. Remaining attached to what is negative and limited chokes out life and creativity. Connect with those who speak LIFE! Connect with those who impart life. Saturate your spirit with His words of life.

God is not limited in His ability!

Let’s raise the level of expectation.

Papa God I am expecting you to move mightily on our behalf today. I bind the spirit of unbelief! I bind every negative word spoken over them or me that would come to choke out destiny. Be cancelled and cut off at the root. Bear no more fruit. Papa I ask you would send angels to remove every plot, plan, and scheme of the enemy! Break down demonic communication and cut off every voice that is not yours. Holy Spirit have your way. Come in like a mighty rushing river and clear out all debri. Elevate our thinking. Elevate our expectations. Have your way God. In the powerful name of Jesus. Amen.

Love in Christ,

Erin Lamb

Empowered to Make a Difference

Don’t worry about the numbers, help one person at a time and always start with the person closest to you,”~Mother Teresa.

God blessed every human being with something to add value to the world. Your smile or kind word can make a difference in the life of another person.

The goal of life is not to pursue being a consumer. We were created by love (God), to be loved, then to love.

Part of the work of Holy Spirit is to reveal to us Jesus. Jesus is perfect love and compassion in action. If we see Jesus, encounter Jesus, we encounter the Father. Jesus went about doing good and destroying the works of the devil. Jesus did more than preach the Gospel, He reached out to those in great need.

Love looks like someone, Jesus.

I love the following verses…

Let each of you esteem and look upon and be concerned for not [merely] his own interests, but also each for the interests of others,~Phil 2:4 (AMPC).

It is quite easy to see the problems. It requires creativity and courage to see the solution. The problems we face today need heavenly solutions. We can read in the online feeds and see it on the news. Yet who will be part of the solution? Who will move beyond being a critic to being a catalyst for change?

We have the wonderful opportunity to be a blessing in the world, in our generation, and leave the world better than before we came.

You and I cannot do everything, we can do something. We can move beyond being spectators to being activists, revivalists, instruments of change, and humanitarians.

We each have a sphere of influence which needs salt and light. We need light in the dark places. We need salt to preserve. We need those truly led by Jesus to be involved in every sphere of influence. Our world needs Christ in us, the hope of glory.

I encourage seeking the heart and face of God for His assignments in the days and years to come. The world needs a church where ALL the members do their part. A body needs every part engaged and mobile to be fully effective. If only my arms work, I will not go very far. I need my legs. If the church is truly a body, then everyone will have some role to play and need to participate in some way.

Speaking of outreach, what is new with Operation God is Love:

This past year one of the ministries I oversee expanded to include missions. We will be taking teams into the Nations to share the Gospel, feed the hungry, clothe the naked, see the deliverance of the oppressed. You may read more about our work at Operation God is Love or join us on Facebook at facebook.com/OperationGodisLove.

I recently sat for a Skype interview with Convergence Ministries out of LA and spoke about God’s vision for helping the poor. You may watch it here: Interview with Convergence Ministry. As stated before, we cannot do everything, we can do something.

Papa God highlight for each of us the ways we can bless the world. Highlight for us our assignments, divine appointments, and divine alignments. Show us who we are in you and how we can be your hands, feet, mouthpiece, and heart in a hurting and lost world!

Love in Christ,

Erin Lamb

Character Development (Holy Spirit University (HSU) Series Part IV)

One of the roles of Holy Spirit is to reveal the Son of God and help us know Jesus. Holy Spirit is also a wealth of wisdom, love, joy, peace, power and helps to develop our character.

We, if we are believers in Jesus as Lord, are invited to live by the Spirit and not after the flesh.

The flesh represents the carnal nature of mankind. The flesh tends to be selfish and self focused. The mind of the flesh wars against God. The character of the flesh, carnal nature, is quite immature and self centered.

One of the ongoing classes in Holy Spirit University is character development. Though God loves us as we are, the intention is not to leave us the way He found us.

The invitation to salvation is more than keeping us from hell, it is an invitation for heaven to live in us and transform us from the inside out.

God knows exactly what is needed to develop our character so we grow to look like Jesus.

Character Counts:

Why does it matter that we grow to possess godly character? One, we are called to be God’s Ambassadors of heaven on earth; two, godly character brings God glory.

Have you ever met someone who is anti-God because they have had horrible experiences with Christians? I have. I went through a season in my own life where I dreaded church. I loved Jesus, His Bride was scary, judgmental, rude, and unloving at times.

Advertising for Heaven:

Our love and character is a billboard for Jesus! He stated His disciples would be recognizable by their great love.

What does our billboard say? Does it say, “God loves you. I love you!” Or does it say, “I can’t be trusted, your fears about trusting God are justified.”

The devil does not mind a body of believers who’s character is so questionable it resembles more of his kingdom than God’s. Carnal (flesh driven, selfish, rude, and unloving) Christians are some of the most effective tools to drive people away from God.

Growing Into Maturity with God:

God does not force us to grow up. He does provide His Spirit. He does place us in situations to grow and learn to rely on Him. He does invite us to listen, abide, know Him, and yield to Him.

As we yield to God, good fruit emerges (John 15:4-5). It does not happen by our striving, or extensive self help.

Good fruit and character development are a byproduct of abiding (relationship with God), intimacy (knowing God), yielding to God, and listening to Holy Spirit and following Him.

Romans 8 tells us the following:

For those who are living according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh [which gratify the body], but those who are living according to the Spirit, [set their minds on] the things of the Spirit [His will and purpose]. Now the mind of the flesh is death [both now and forever—because it pursues sin]; but the mind of the Spirit is life and peace [the spiritual well-being that comes from walking with God—both now and forever]; the mind of the flesh [with its sinful pursuits] is actively hostile to God. It does not submit itself to God’s law, since it cannot, and those who are in the flesh [living a life that caters to sinful appetites and impulses] cannot please God.

However, you are not [living] in the flesh [controlled by the sinful nature] but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God lives in you [directing and guiding you]. But if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Him [and is not a child of God]. If Christ lives in you, though your [natural] body is dead because of sin, your spirit is alive because of righteousness [which He provides]. And if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead lives in you, He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit, who lives in you (Romans 8:5-11 (AMP)).

If we are in Christ, the old has passed away and the new has come. We are invited to live out our new identity as sons and daughters of God.

As we walk with God we begin to resemble God. We become like the God’s we worship. Our lives begin to manifest the fruit of our deepest intimacy.

We can have Holy Spirit and He does not have us. Yielding is an exceptional way see the character of God manifest in our lives.

Papa God, help us to yield to you and the Holy Spirit’s leading. Help us to abide and cultivate intimacy with you. You love us, may we abide in that love, and manifest that love in the world. Grow us up in you. In Jesus powerful name. Amen.

Love in Christ,

Erin Lamb

Sustaining Power to Overcome (Holy Spirit University (HSU) Series Part III)

Photo credit: Word of the Day

Holy Spirit is sustaining power if we abide. Our world is full of things that are not like God; pain, sin, death, destruction, rudeness, cruelty, abuse, and so much more. How do we overcome? We abide in the one who has overcome. Jesus suffered and died. He did not stay dead, He rose with all power in His hands. He says to born again believers, “I overcame, you can overcome. The same power, the same Spirit that raised Me, it abides in you.”

Since the Spirit of God lives in me, I can (so can you if you are a Spirit filled follower of Jesus), give thanks for adversity, opposition, and persecution.

Before you think I have lost my marbles or gone wackado…heres why?

Adversity, opposition, and persecution are opportunities for growth, refinement, and deeper intimacy with God.

Adversity reveals the authencity of what we proclaim to believe. Without adversity we can claim to trust God, claim to have faith, yet the fire of affliction reveals what is in us. If there is unbelief, it rises to the surface in panic in moments of adversity. If there is pride, it rises to the surface. Adversity reveals what we believe and exposes any flaws in our character or identity that need refined.

Opposition is an opportunity to rely on the Spirit of God and not our flesh. Can we love like God when we are being opposed, sabatoged, mistreated, and persecuted? It’s easy to be kind when life is peachy. Can we be kind when hell is going on around us? Can we stay in a place of honor, even when dishonored? Can we represent Jesus well even when hated without cause? Opposition reveals our love walk.

Persecution, if yielded to God, brings forth the oil of His glory or bitterness. An olive is pressed to bring forth more oil. If we let hurt or offense in, the stench of bitterness arises and the fragrance of hatred flows from us. If we yield to God, more and more of the character of God is manifested in our lives.

Persecution can also deepen our intimacy with God. “God here I am. What do I do? Help me to love those who hate me. Help me to love and honor those who mistreat me. Forgive them God for they know not what they do. Invade their hearts with your love. Help me to abide in you and not respond in my flesh. May you be glorified.”

The Psalmist stated, “My suffering was good for me, for it taught me to pay attention to your decrees,”~Psalm 119:71.

It is so tempting to run from Gethsemane, yet nothing crucifies the flesh or exposes our blind spots like testing, trials, adversity, opposition, and persecution.

If you are in the fire today or your faith or love walk is being tested, my prayer is, “Don’t jump out of the fire ahead of time. Some things we are delivered from and some through. The only thing consumed in the fire (if we are linked to God) is what limits us, the dross, the stuff unlike God.”

It is not by our strength or power, it is by His strength and power. God is able to sustain us and help us thrive in the midst of the worst adversity, opposition, trials, and persecution.

Disclaimer: this does not apply to abuse (sexual, physical, emotional, or spiritual abuse); get out, get help. If you physically or emotionally sick, Jesus wants you healed.

Papa God, for those weary in well doing I ask for a wave of your goodness and glory to wash over them. For those beaten down and afflicted, I ask for a raising of a standard against the enemy, let not our faith fail. For those persecuted, I pray comfort, healing, and your sustaining power. Help us to lean on you and not ourselves. Increase our awareness of your love, peace, goodness, and joy. Take us deeper into intimacy with you. Holy Spirit come and saturate our body, soul, and spirit with Shalom. In the mighty name of Jesus amen.

You are so deeply loved! You are prayed for too on a regular basis.

Love in Christ,

Erin Lamb