“Let them praise His Name with the dance.” (Psalm 149:3)
Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass; It’s about learning to dance in the rain. The oil of joy is released in the dance. What may have overwhelmed us in the night season is given fresh perspective in the morning hour. Joy springs forth and the suggested form of expression is the dance. A heart that dances is a powerful tool that breaks a person out of confinement and into celebration. Sometimes its the only way to shift our focus.
Dancers are releasers.
They may be like Miriam the prophetess (Moses’ sister), who lead the Hebrew women in celebration after their victory over Pharaoh (Ex. 15:20-21) or like King David who expressed excitement over the Ark of the Covenant being restored to its place of honor in the Tabernacle (2 Sam 6:15-18). Dance is the human body’s most radical expression of joy and triumph. Joy and triumph must have a voice; for when we do not celebrate our victories, we misinterpret the measure of our strength. Joy and triumph celebrate the reality that God is with us.
Join Him in the Celebration!
The Hebrew word “guwl” means to spin about or dance violently and is the word for “rejoice” in Zephaniah 3:17. “The Lord your God is with you, He is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing.”
God expresses His extreme joy over us, because through every situation, He has triumphed. He has won the victory. All He needs to do is get us to see it and believe it. He has triumphed over our enemies, He has broken the curses that once caused us to stumble and He has set our feet to dancing. Our greatest dance is released in the rainy seasons as we join Him in the song of celebration. Hallelujah for the Victory Dance!
“Oh, that You would rend the heavens! That You would come down! That the mountains might shake at Your Presence. To make Your Name known to Your adversaries, that the nations may tremble at Your Presence.” (Isa. 64:1-2)
Like many of you, I have felt the despair of this season. We are in a very narrow place and even as the nations rage, there is a sense within my heart that all is not well. Everything that can be shaken is being shaken. If we are not careful, each of us might be tempted to believe that we are alone in this season. The Tempter would love for us to believe that God is not with us, that He doesn’t care about our challenges and that no one, not even our closest friends, are concerned about us. Yet, we must not allow the devil to cause us to surrender one step or one inch of our Kingdom posture. We must stand on His Word and tell the devil, “It is written!”
Releasing His Word:
When God says He will rend the heavens, He means that He will tear open a portion of heaven for His entry. He intends to come down by releasing His Word to us. The word “rend” is connected to the same word in Greek which means to “call out”. God is calling out! He has violently ripped a hole in the spiritual atmosphere and come into our world… His Word has become flesh and dwelt among us. As unsettling and unnatural as it was for a virgin to conceive and as foolish and unacceptable as it was for the world to embrace; God was rending the heavens and making Himself known to the nations. Why? Because His very Name is life, peace and salvation!
Let me repeat: His Name is Life, Peace and Salvation!
This “calling out” means several things. First, it implies that God will call out to us. He will make His name known to us, to call us to accountability. He knows us by name and He desires that we know Him… that we know His voice and His Presence. That we recognize love when it is demonstrated by a cross. It also implies a calling out to our enemy… His adversary! That’s right, can you picture this? Not only is God rending the heavens and calling out to us with words of life, He is also calling out to our enemy; the accuser, who accuses us day and night. What’s He saying… “It is Finished!” The day of vengence has now come…
I will show wonders in heaven above and signs in the earth beneath: blood and fire and vapor of smoke. The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the coming of the great and awesome day of the Lord. And it shall come to pass that whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved. (Acts 2:19-21)
God is once more rending the heavens and coming down to us, by releasing His Word. Will we hear Him? He is speaking concerning our breakthroughs, as well as exposing the strongholds that are blocking His advancement in the Earth. He is speaking new strategies and equipping His people with power to transform the culture one person at a time. Shaking is not a new thing, its a God thing… God is revealing His purposes in the Earth and exposing the enemy at the same time. Our responsibility is to walk in God’s Promises and trust in His Fathering Heart.
Position yourself to hear the Voice of Your Redeemer! Remove the old garments for the Bride Groom stands ready. Cast aside the influence of Babylon (the world system) and Mammon. Shake yourself free from discouragement that latches onto your mind. Renewal and refreshment are awaiting the Bride as she sees with the eyes of faith and love. This Bride Groom comes with fire in His eyes, declaring His intentions. The Lord is extending peace like a river and the wealth of the nations like flowing streams (Isa 66:12). He comes anouncing His intent… “I have come for My Bride!”
The Good News:
There is a good word in these times of shaking. “Though sorrow may last for the night, joy comes in the morning” (Ps 30:5). God is not finished and He has no intention of holding back… for in rending the heavens He is making His Name known among the nations. The mountains will shake, but those who have their hearts set on their Beloved… they will welcome the sound of His footsteps.
“And it shall come to pass that whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.” (Acts 2:21)
“But why do you call Me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do the things which I say? Whoever comes to Me, and hears My sayings and does them, I will show you whom he is like: He is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid the foundation on the rock. And when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently against that house, and could not shake it, for it was founded on the rock. But he who heard and did nothing is like a man who built a house on the earth without a foundation, against which the stream beat vehemently; and immediately it fell. And the ruin of that house was great.” (Lk. 6:46-49)
The building of a life is a process of listening and learning, growing and trusting those who are around us. But it requires us to test the words and actions of those we love and those who seem to be influencing others. Building a life is all about who we put our faith in… ultimately. Jesus tells us that it requires a good foundation… one that is based upon some work. Notice: that Jesus tells us that in order to have a good foundation, we must dig down deep and lay our faith and belief on the rock… not just any rock, but the truth that Jesus is Lord. Its not lip service, but heart belief… hearing and responding to the voice of heaven as it comes through the person of Jesus the Christ, the Son of the Living God! (Mt. 16:16)
Who to Trust:
Sometimes we put our faith in a church. We become very passionate about our church and may even develop a “my-church-is-better-than-your-church” attitude. But there are a lot of great churches in the world. And we are all part of the Church, not just a particular church. We may have a favorite Bible teacher or like one pastor better than another. This even happened with first-century believers. The Apostle Paul warned, “For when one says, ‘I am of Paul,’ and another, ‘I am of Apollos,’ are you not carnal? Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers through whom you believed, as the Lord gave to each one?” (1 Cor. 3:4–5).
There is nothing wrong with liking a certain pastor or enjoying a church that you are a part of… but don’t build the foundation of your faith on these things. Churches will disappoint you, because they are run by people. And people make mistakes, and sometimes they are misunderstood. Pastors will disappoint you as well, because they are human… like everyone else. So if you build your foundation on a church or on a pastor, you will find yourself vulnerable and susceptible to offense, because those people might mess up. When I speak to people who have given up on God… they usually say things like “their just a bunch of hypocrites” or “Christians are judgmental and intolerant”. Those are the words of an offended heart.
The Apostle Paul said, “…no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ” (1 Cor. 3:11).
Jesus is the True Foundation!
Jesus said all other ground is “sinking sand”… all other things, even good things; have their limits as to, how far they can be trusted. When you stand before God one day, He will want to know what you did with His Son – Jesus. He will not be asking whether everyone you knew, who claimed to be a Christian… behaved like one.
So don’t build your faith on people. Build your life on the foundation of Jesus Christ!
“For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the Glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.” (2 Cor 4:6)
At the Feast of Tabernacles in Jerusalem, Jesus stood up and cried out with a loud voice, “Is anyone thirsty? Let him come to Me and drink, because believing will release in you rivers of living water!” (Jn 7:37-39) Not reasoning, doctrinal traditions or church programs… believing will do this. Yet its not just any believing it is believing that is moved by the Spirit as we look into the face of Jesus Christ.
Looking into things:
When we look into things, they reveal their glory. They reveal the nature of their design and their purpose. As a youth I can recall buying Hot Wheel toy cars and spending hours just looking at their unique style, color and cool features. Some were very tough looking and I could imagine driving wilderness roads and crashing through any obstacles in my path. As I played, my mother would often shout from the other room, “It sounds like an amazing adventure in there!” Whereby I would feel embarrassed by my intensity as the discoverer of the “glory” of my new car.
God’s Amazing Adventure:
When God created Adam, He made a powerful decision. He asks Adam to name the animals. In doing this He was teaching Adam a basic principle about glory. He was teaching Adam that when you look into the nature of something it will eventually reveal its character and purpose. When these things are discovered, “naming” it becomes simple. But it also creates a platform for relationship with the animal being named. Adam would need to discover how a porcupine was unique to the elephant, lion or bear.
In this process God was making Himself vulnerable to the desire of Adam, because the training would serve to help him value the Glory of God. Adam would sin and fall short of the Glory of God (Rom 3:23) and all would be lost except the memory of God’s heart toward Adam. As God returns to the Garden of Eden to find the man hiding himself, it was not man who could not find God… it was God who could not find man. Oh, God knew where he was, but his sin now created seperation because of the Glory that stood as a barrier between the perfect and the fallen. God calls man to Himself and clothes the man with the garment of a lamb, shedding blood and forever revealing the pattern of recovering a lost Glory.
The Nature of Our Father:
This is what a Father does, he creates avenues back into relational Glory. He restores, redeems and invites the son or daughter back into relationship even when the requirements for reconciliation have changed forever. And change they did! There would never again be access to the Garden on the same level of relationship. Adam and Eve would need to set their eyes upon a new Tree of Life… the Cross!
2000 Years Later:
The Lamb of God would come and take away the sin of the world and the same God who commanded light to shine in the darkness would shine in the hearts of those who believe. The light would reveal a knowledge like no other, it was the knowledge of the Glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. Note: the knowledge of the Glory is not the Glory… but the Glory itself is found in His face, looking into the face of Jesus Christ. Just keep looking into His beautiful face and you will find the Glory of God.
“Now Elijah took his mantle, rolled it up, and struck the water; and it was divided this way and that, so that the two of them crossed over on dry ground. And so it was, when they had crossed over, that Elijah said to Elisha, “Ask! What may I do for you, before I am taken away from you?” Elisha said, “Please let a double portion of your spirit be upon me.” So he said, “You have asked a hard thing. Nevertheless, if you see me when I am taken from you, it shall be so for you; but if not, it shall not be so.” (2 Kings 2:8-10)
When Elijah and his successor, Elisha came to the River Jordan they were at the “River of Transition”. A change was about to take place. The Mantle of prophetic anointing is about to be shifted from the elder to the younger. How will this take place? By the careful and deliberate choice of Elijah! Notice here that the sons of the prophets were left on the other side of the River – they will have no say in the transfer of the Mantle. The transfer will occur at a place of God’s choosing and not man’s.
Asking for Double!
In seasons of transition, there are opportunities for increase! For eight long years Elisha had followed Elijah faithfully, and finally the Man of God asks Elisha what he wanted from their relationship. Elisha was bold, because he understood the value of transition. He asked for a double portion of the Spirit that was upon Elijah. Elisha wanted the anointing and authority of the Holy Spirit… in fact, he was after double. It is important to state clearly that no man can give what he does not have. Therefore, it was impossible for Elijah to give double; but it was not impossible for Elisha to receive double according to his faith in God. His faith got him just what he asked for… a double portion. And the principle seems to have been true in Elisha, because we see recorded in Scripture double the miracles done by his hand than that of Elijah. When he received the mantle, the observant followers of Elijah recognized the anointing on Elisha’s life by saying, “The spirit of Elijah doth rest on Elisha”. They saw and recognized the power of God upon the ministry of Elisha.
When you stand at the River of Transition… what do you ask for?
Jesus received His mantle at this same River!
Leaping forward… 2500 years or so. It may have been the will of God that this “mantle of anointing” to be passed from one generation to the next all the way from Moses to John the Baptist… and on to Jesus! I cannot help but believe that God was once more speaking in the river of transition. At the time of Jesus’ baptism, all righteousness was fulfilled and the Holy Spirit came as a dove and lit upon the Son of Man. The Father’s announcement is heard, “this is My Son in whom I love!” And from this very place a mantle was received and miracles began in Jesus’ ministry.
Today, Jesus is calling us to the River of Transition… Go after double!