Under Pressure

Abram began to journey, aiming for a land the Lord would reveal. Along the way . . . he turned toward Egypt to supply to the needs of his entourage, an obvious lapse of confidence in the God He first began to follow.

In a second instance, later in the journey, Abram’s decision concerning his wife’s servant Hagar altered the plan God had given and Hagar, now suddenly disposable in Sarah and Abram’s eyes, did not “go away” as they hoped—God did not allow it.

Times of challenge are teaching times when we learn a lot about ourselves. Resulting pressures expose the true crux of the matter . . . the challenge may have little to do with the immediate but connects more to something earlier, something hidden from view.

The same is true of situations today. It may be the one thing you haven’t considered. Your core problem has become something “more than” and it will not go away because God will not allow it to.

Under pressure, confronted with details we never realized were there, we seem to find the end of that rope and finally for the first time acknowledge hidden issues we could not see before the pressures of what we’re going through exposed them.

The story of Abram’s compromise reminds us that discipleship and accountability protect us, not just in small and every-day matters but also when, left to choose, like Abram we are allured into wrong, often devastating choices.


Appointed Things

God appoints people for particular tasks and each person is gifted by the Lord to accomplish those God-given assignments. He is both giver of the gift and governor over the task. His paths are peace and His blessing of peace connects paths where life-assignments are established.

Of the increase of His government and peace there shall be no end, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice…. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this. (Is. 9:7)

It is important to agree with His government. When we do, divine government displaces the world’s confusion, and the driving force of the world’s way of doing things, with excellence and order and peace! Best of all, His government over appointed things in our lives, along with the corresponding fruit of peace produced, is on the increase!


Acts 17:24-31 | Isaiah 9:7 | Verses@Once

Breath From God

Man doesn’t live on bread alone. We get breath for every life-force from the Word of God—from every Word that proceeds from God. In other words, realized or not, words spoken or written by God preside over everything.

The spirit in man draws from something all the time, imbibing of the spirit involved at any given time and thereby encouraged or quenched concerning God’s plan. It’s why we guard our heart and spirit-life.

God’s Word in your heart quickens you [makes alive, gives breath to]; His wisdom exposes forces that rival the light of His eternal truth. The Amplified Bible expresses it well, connecting our life’s breath and immortal spirit to God’s eternal Word:

“For the Word that God speaks is alive and full of power
[making it active, operative, energizing, and effective];
it is sharper than any two-edged sword,
penetrating to the dividing line of
the breath of life (soul)
and [the immortal] spirit,
and of joints and marrow [of the deepest part of our nature],
exposing and sifting and analyzing and judging”
the very thoughts and purposes of the heart.
And not a creature exists that is concealed from His sight,
but all things are open and exposed, naked and defenseless
To the eyes of Him with Whom we have to do.” (Heb 4:12-13)

Amen. Matthew 4:4, Job 32:8, Proverbs 4:23, Luke 21:15, 1 Thessalonians 5:19, Hebrews 4:12-13Verses @ Once 

Renegade Thoughts

Remember to speak “life” words concerning the thought patterns you want to change, even saying aloud to yourself correct thoughts and patterns of thought. Then align your “thinking” accordingly. The Lord has said “I know the thoughts I have for you” so we know the Lord disciplines His thoughts. He wants you to do the same.

Thoughts produce thought patterns so spiritual discipline includes guarding our thoughts – one renegade thought produces more of the same, a potentially consuming pattern of thinking which is the last thing needed when you are believing God and standing in faith for a manifestation of His Word in your life.

When we mediate on (dwell upon) a thought or pattern of thought, momentum for it builds, producing fruit of the original thought. An entry point for deception can only come when the focus of our thoughts develop around something God does not approve, because anything He does not approve is the essence of unbelief.

What to do?

Reverse all those negatives. Turn them around and send them back where they came from. Meditate in the Word until your focus corrects. Change the main, central thought and include all related thoughts that were subservient to the main one. Isolate those renegade ideas and ban them from your circumstances.

“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope . . . ” (Jer. 29:11-14)


Jeremiah 29:11-14, NKJV, Jeremiah 29, Verses@Once

Land of Your Anointing

There is a land for each of us—the location where the anointing in our lives is more connected and finds greatest expression. Apart from this special placement we do not flourish in the best way and to the fullest extent possible. It’s why Abraham kept moving.

Some are in the right field but wrong department; for others the region is right but not the town; and for other reluctant souls, “familiar” borders corral destiny until it would take something out of the ordinary to dynamite them out!

It’s time to go there . . .  the place He tells you, the place He will show you! Despite success experienced elsewhere, success in the appointed place is greater: Now the Lord had said to Abram: Get out of your country, from your family and from your father’s house, to the land that I will show you. (Gen 12:1)



Genesis 12:1, Genesis 12

Career Blueprint

Personal ambition should be weighed in light of God’s original design as seen in Abraham’s calling: In thee shall all families of the earth be blessed; and, in thee shall all nations be blessed. 

The design given to Abraham is ours also—God’s foundational design for Abraham and his lineage is our blueprint. We are distinctive among our peers and as a family are blessed to bring forth the Kingdom: In you all the nations shall be blessed.

Our worldview should line up this way. The field we are called to is where we find increase, experience blessing and fulfillment and, in that field, we fill to the max and impact to the utmost all the Lord intended: Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth as it is in Heaven! 

Agree with Him. Boldly prophesy your promotion in your calling-field. Declare all that must take place in that field this year—and next. The Lord knows details. He arranges.

You have sown, now He is moving behind the scenes. You have stood for Him, now His arm is bared to both vindicate you and reward your faithfulness. He knows. He is power. He is might. His reward is with Him.  


Psalm 75:6, Genesis 12:3, Galatians 3:8, Ephesians 1:4, 1 Peter 1:20, Luke 19:13, Matthew 6:10, Verses@Once

Seated With Him

“For he raised us from the dead along with Christ, and we are seated with him in the heavenly realms–all because we are one with Christ Jesus. And so God can always point to us as examples of the incredible wealth of his favor and kindness toward us, as shown in all he has done for us through Christ Jesus.” (Ephesians 2:6-7)

Don’t forget the position God has given you. You are seated with Him and your day is filled with spiritual insight for understanding; you are seated with Him and have that enviable position from which to address anything you’ll face today:

And we know that the Son of God has come, and he has given us understanding so that we can know the true God. And now we are in God because we are in his Son, Jesus Christ. He is the only true God, and he is eternal life. Dear children, keep away from anything that might take God’s place in your hearts.” (1John 5:20-21)

Don’t forget. Always take the high road. Those closely connected to God are strong to do exploits, always taking the high road with poise to raise the bar for everyone around them. You are seated with Him. You are known for your wisdom with discernment for exactly what to say.



Ephesians 2:6-7, NLT, 1 John 5:20-21, NLT, Verses @ Once

Watchers Are Needed

The night He was betrayed Jesus warned that one of His disciples would join forces with Satan’s plot. Pretending innocence under exposure, Judas defiantly continued in the direction he had chosen, he betrayed the Lord in a conspiracy of murder.

Peter, another disciple, was dismissive when Jesus warned him (Peter) that he would deny his association with the Master. Insulating himself from the charge Peter claimed abhorrence at such treachery and adamantly protested Jesus’ prediction.

Confronted by Jesus, Judas remained loyal to his brutal plan and, confronted by Jesus, Peter continued headstrong in self-righteousness. Neither really heard the voice that called them back from the precipice. His warning could not deter them.

Real deliverance depends upon willingness to hear the Lord and those He sends. As was the case the night of Jesus’ betrayal, deception works secretly in the heart until we are powerless to deliver ourselves. To continue as we are may seem at first to cost nothing, but a patient enemy subtly plans to destroy precious vision and drain every ounce of joy from our lives.

Watchers are needed—those who watch for and hold onto truth; to encourage us to remain teachable and willing to listen; to confront our treachery, not once or sporadically but faithfully over time, with commitment to stand in the gap for us until the Lord’s warning is heard, and the root of anything not right is revealed.

Never ignore the warning of watchers.


Galatians 3:22-24, The Message, Matthew 26, Verses @ Once 

Struggle For Control

Understand the struggle, fight, contest is for control. For who’s the boss. We see struggle and think it’s for power or money, but the struggle at its center is for control.

Our lives are like Bible prophecy. Isaiah saw beyond our day, beyond the last of the last days into the thousand-year millennial period when Satan’s struggle to control Jerusalem is resolved. Then men will not learn war anymore.

People attempt to control others, thinking they can and as though there’s no consequence. Their boldness to do so continues, seemingly unchallenged over time, even years. Then something or someone unexpected shines light onto their inner struggle.

Control, manipulation, accusing and tormenting others suddenly comes home to roost—like a boomerang, the real tormentor buried within is targeted. A harvest of all those seeds. Now a new and totally different contest begins.


Isaiah 2:1-4, Psalm 51:6, Verses@Once

Life In The Moment

Too often we live short-term, taking risks we wouldn’t otherwise but for the thing right in front of us, right this moment. And though we live this way, we mentally obsess about what lies ahead, out into the future—wondering, planning, questioning, doubting, risking the moment yet fearing the future. Living this way unwittingly opens fear doors. Attempting to resolve the fear we project mentally, attempting to control everything in general. The resulting chaos is understandable.

Control is never our answer–giving is. Life consists in seed sown. In the case of overcoming fear or fears, by giving we activate faith to believe God, both short-term and for the future. Faith is fear’s opposite so faith is the force you need to debunk fear. Choosing to give rather than hoard—time, talent, things—overthrows self-traps. Sow your life—sow every minute, sow every detail. Release the details, let them go. Give yourself into today. Tomorrow, do the same.



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“The timing for this is incredibly important.” — L.S. | Pennsylvania | August 14, 2017

“Thank you Shirley! I love this word!” — M.W. | Texas | August 15, 2017

“POWERFUL devotion this morning! Thank you & THANK GOD for those like you!” — R.J. South Carolina | August 15, 2017

How I needed this today. Thank you for sharing what God is saying to you. We need you in the Body. The Lord bless. You. — P.V. | Arizona | August 2, 2017