I’ve taken another step of faith and my writing will now feature at:
After 30 years of prayers, constant longing and dreaming about the glorious moment…it ARRIVED! When I was 13 I prayed desperate prayers to get snowed in at my family shack in the central highlands of Tasmania. I was going through an awfully difficult time at school so I sought the solution of being trapped in snow! From that moment on I often wondered what it would actually be like to be snowed in. I figured it would be a terribly exciting grand adventure.
Sunday my long-awaited dream came true! Friday night I arrived at the shack for a girl’s weekend with my dear friend Elisa. We came wanting to have a time of relaxation but also sought a refreshing and a deeper connection with God. We experienced God in so many different aspects over the weekend. I felt like Friday night reminded me of the fierce unrelenting passionate love that God has for us, as the strong winds howled and shook the shack. When the thunder roared just outside my bedroom I was reminded that God speaks in the thunder:
“When he speaks in the thunder, the heavens roar with rain. He causes the clouds to rise over the earth. He sends the lightning with the rain and releases the wind from his storehouses.” Jeremiah 10:13 New Living Translation (NLT)
Saturday the heavens certainly did roar with rain. As I watched it pour down I was reminded of the saturating refreshing reviving God that I have been so blessed to experience. Saturday night we had hoped for a light dusting of snow just to make the highland adventure feel authentic, we had wanted to experience the final extreme – snow. Well we were NOT disappointed, we certainly had snow and to an extreme! I was so excited that my dream had unfolded but my heart was torn. We are both mums and we had wonderful husbands at home eagerly awaiting our return so they could have at least an afternoon to relax but also they had to go to work Monday, therefore we were needed at home.
Oh dear we faced such a dilemma but one that I simply couldn’t easily solve. We were stuck and there wasn’t a thing I could do. So I surrendered to the moment and I decided to really enjoy it, I told my heart to turn away from the fear of disappointing my family. As I allowed God to surpass my fear with His grand love I felt a sense of abandonment arise, I felt like a kid and there was nothing to worry about, only fun to be had!
I decided that I needed to have breakfast and a cup of tea so that I could go and explore the snow-capped wonderland right out our front door. I eagerly waited for Elisa to wake so we could go out. I felt like a kid Christmas morning who has awaken before her family and is sitting looking with longing at the presents stacked. After an hour of wait Elisa awoke and I decided to trick her about the snow, when she asked I replied: ‘oh you better come look quick before it goes.’ She got up and looked out the window and said: ‘oh you rascal, that’s the best prank!’.
We were both so excited. I suggested we go for an explore and also to try get phone signal so we could let our families know. We donned my dad’s waders, jackets, beanies, scarves and gloves. As we ventured out it took my breath away, it was simply stunning. Everything looked so fresh and crisp. It felt like such a special moment in time: extra forced rest and more time with God. What a privilege to have experienced it, what a blessing!! My long-awaited dream really had come true! It certainly was a terribly exciting grand adventure. Does this mean my other dreams will soon unfold? I believe so! How extremely exciting and humbling to know that God does hear my heart’s cry and respond.
After our explore we settled back in front of the fire and Elisa gave me a verse to colour in. As I sat at the dining room table looking out at the snow falling, I felt such a sense of peace. I was reminded of the gentle loving compassionate peaceful God that I felt was speaking directly to my heart in that moment. As I looked over the pure white landscape I was reminded that my sins are washed whiter than snow:
“Purify me from my sins, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.” Psalm 51:7 New Living Translation (NLT)
My 30 year long wait had come to an end and it gave me the confidence that dreams really DO come true. I confidently press on chasing after the dreams in my heart, taking one day at a time and completing each task as it unfolds.
Here’s the prayer we prayed Sunday afternoon based on the verse that I coloured in:
Holy Spirit, empower us to truly acknowledge the Lord. Help us to really know Him; to recognise Him; be intimately acquainted with and understand God more. May we be zealous in our pursuit for more of the Lord and His wonderful ways. We so appreciate this extra time to press in and search for more of Your heart Abba Father. Help us to truly cherish and adore You. I thank You that You’re reliable. Just as the dawn shines, so You shine bright each and every day in our lives. Thank You that You constantly refresh us, just like the heavy rains nourish the earth. We thank You for the former work that You have done in our lives, for the work You’re doing right now, and for the work still to come. Let the latter flooding of You fill us with Your goodness and Your grace. Inspired by Hosea 6:3.
I pray that you will experience:
- The fierce unrelenting passionate love that God has for you.
- The saturating refreshing reviving love of God.
- That you will encounter the gentle loving compassionate peaceful God.
Many blessings, Keona
Look at our gorgeous shack all nestled in the snow:
I’ve been working on 3 creative expression pieces in an attempt to convey my recent illness and restoration season.
This piece is to try and express how I was feeling but what was actually going on.
I felt like the barren tree but God was doing a deep work in my life.
God’s love, mercy, grace and hope is restoring me!
In the left hand corner is my silhouette with my face turned upwards towards God. As I press into Him, Jesus’ blood washes over me again and again in waves of love, mercy, grace and peace. As I’m filled with more of Him hope arises in my heart. I am transformed from my previous shell of an existence to a person who is vibrant.
Now I know that I’m no artist but this has been a fun and therapeutic journey.
Here’s a psalm that I was reminded of this week which expresses my journey:
O Lord, my healing God, I cried out for a miracle as I desperately needed help! Oh how can I possibly praise You? For You heard my cry for help and You healed me! You brought me back from the brink of utter despair and death. I was held firmly within the grasp of overwhelming pain, sorrow and hopelessness. Even though it felt like it many times, You did not abandon me. Now here I am, alive and well, being fully restored and made whole! (Inspired by Psalm 30:2-3, the NLT, AMP & TPT versions)
I’d encourage you to try something creative this week, it can be as simple as going to the beach and drawing in the sand. Whatever it is enjoy it!
Many blessings, Keona xx
As I’ve pushed into God for my healing to manifest, I’ve desperately sought for restoration and transformation. During those months, I found so many things that encourage me but the 4 things that have dramatically been effective are:
I pray Ephesians 6:10-18 over myself each day. I am strong in the Lord when I proudly wear the armour of God:
- Helmet of salvation – thank you Lord for the precious gift of salvation! Jesus dress me in your thoughts, grant me the ability to capture my thoughts and allow you Lord to dispel the wrong thoughts. Open my eyes to see what you want me to see, open my ears to hear what you want me to hear and place a guard upon my tongue so that only words of truth and life spring forth.
- Breastplate of righteousness – because of Jesus’ great sacrifice I have been made right with God. This breastplate protects my willing, courageous and bold heart! God create a new heart and renew a steadfast spirit within me (Psalm 51). Help me to have a tender responsive heart, full of Your compassion and grace (Ezekiel 11:19).
- Belt of truth – thank you Lord for Your perfect truth in my life. Seep Your glorious promises deep into every fibre of my being!
- Shoes of peace – which come from the Good News and enables me to be fully prepared. Flood me with a peace that transcends my own understanding and guards my heart and mind (Philippians 4:6-7). I absorb God’s peace into every cell of my body.
- Shield of faith – I praise you Lord that you enable me to quench every fiery arrow from the enemy. Grant me discernment like never before to enter into the spiritual battle around me.
- Sword of the Spirit – thank you God for Your living active word! Lord I ask that You enable me to wield Your words wisely.
With this armour on I can pray unceasingly in all situations and God strengthens me to keep fighting the good fight!
I ask God to surround me with His comfort and protection. I pray that God’s light will shine bright in me.
I ask for great wisdom to reveal God’s peace in confusing conversations and situations. I declare that I am a glorious masterpiece: “For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.” Ephesians 2:10 NLT. I pray that I will allow God to flow through me.
Alignment Through Identity
When I embrace the fact that I am fearfully and wonderfully made I can discover how God has created me and for what purpose. I love this version of Psalm 139:
“Lord, you know everything there is to know about me. You’ve examined my innermost being with your loving gaze. You perceive every movement of my heart and soul, and understand my every thought before it even enters my mind. You are so intimately aware of me, Lord, you read my heart like an open book and you know all the words I’m about to speak before I even start a sentence! You know every step I will take, before my journey even begins! You’ve gone into my future to prepare the way, and in kindness you follow behind me to spare me from the harm of my past. With your hand of love upon my life, you impart a Father’s blessing to me. This is just too wonderful, deep, and incomprehensible! Your understanding of me brings me wonder and strength.” Psalm 139:1-6 The Passion Translation
4 daily reminders to declare:
- I am fearfully and wonderfully made – Psalm 139:14
- No longer do I live but Christ lives in me – Galatians 2:20
- The very same spirit that raised Jesus from the dead resides in me which gives me life – Romans 8:11
- Nothing can ever separate me from the love of God – Romans 8:38-39
I need to declare these even when I doubt with every fibre of my being; even when the situation feels as if I’m distant from God; for when I’m weak and failing is when I need to declare these truths – and declare them loudly!. I believe that God’s truth is important to declare each and every day.
When you speak out of your identity in Me, the surging power of My Spirit will lift you high and you will soar above the pain of the moment and the pressure of the test. I am your true Identity. Find your pleasure in My and I will pour My power into you. An extract from ‘I hear Him whisper…I am your identity’ by The Passion Translation
Transformation By The Word of God
Sometimes it takes me reading a verse over and over for months and months before it comes alive but when it does it is life altering! One of my favourite at the moment:
⁷God’s Word is perfect in every way, how it revives my soul! His laws lead me to truth, and His ways make me wise! ⁸His teachings make me joyful and I radiate His light, His precepts are so pure! His commands, how they challenge me to keep close to His heart! The revelation-light of His Word makes my spirit shine radiant! ¹ᴼThe rarest treasures of life are found in His truth. That’s why I prize God’s Word like others prize the finest gold. Nothing brings the soul such sweetness as seeking His living words. Psalm 19:7-8 & 10 The Passion Translation paraphrased
When God’s Word becomes first place in your life, there isn’t a problem you’re facing that can’t be solved by faith. Faith is the victory that overcomes the world. There is no weapon formed against you that can prosper (Isaiah 54:17) when you are believing God. You plus God makes a majority. Andrew Wommack
My previous understanding about worship was that I had to be in a place where life felt good so that I could worship.
But I’ve been challenged to worship in the midst of horrendous moments. I didn’t understand at first why or how that would make a difference but I’ve seen how impacting it is! It certainly hasn’t been easy but I know that when I’m feeling low is when I need to sing louder. When I choose to worship God in the terrible/horrible/painful times I’m inviting Him into those moments and He breaks the oppression. I may need to sing songs such as ‘The Desert’ or ‘Even When It Hurts’ – songs that acknowledge it’s tough but also that God is good.
I’ve seen the evidence of how effective worship-despite-the-horror-around-me is!
When your spirit is pressed beyond measure so that you can hardly breathe, pray if you are able to, and praise when you’re not able to pray. Watchman Nee
I read Acts 16 – the story of Paul and Silas who had been beaten and thrown in prison. Around midnight they began to pray and sing hymns to God. Their situation was miserable but they chose to worship God in that terrible place! Why? Because they knew that God is good ALL the time! Their praise stirred God’s heart to such a point that a massive earthquake occurred and the prison was shaken to its foundations. All the doors immediately flew open, and the chains of every prisoner fell off!
As I read this a great desire grew within me – I asked that God would arise within me such a heart of worship! That the Lord would shake all the foundations within me that are false, because God is the rock upon which I stand.
Worship breaks the ‘woe is me’ cycle in my life.
I lift my eyes to God and acknowledge that He is good, faithful and with me – despite every fibre of my body screaming something different and the situation surrounding me trying to suffocate me!
As I worship I’m reminded that God is Immanuel – with me in all things!
As I worship I take my eyes off the things that are stressing me out and fix my eyes on Jesus – the one who has the victory!
As I worship I invite the Holy Spirit to commune with me, to move through me and take each and every burden!
As I worship I remind myself that God is good, faithful, true and full of grace.
As I worship I’m once again filled with awe and wonder.
As I worship God’s majesty reigns and I am forever changed!
As I worship I choose to allow gratitude to change my attitude.
Become aware of Him. Turn your attention from every other nagging situation, and just focus on the One who loves you most. It will change your perspective on everything. #noagenda #justadoration #Godisgood Bill Johnson
When I worship I press in for the Spirit of the Lord to come and rest on me afresh. I desire for God to fill me with the Spirit of wisdom and understanding; the Spirit of counsel and strength; the Spirit of knowledge, reverence, obedience and fear of the Lord. To take delight in the fear of the Lord, for then I will no longer judge what’s happening around me by what my eyes see, or make decisions by what my ears hear. As promised in Isaiah 11:2-3
Faith has its anchor in the unseen realm. It lives from the invisible toward the visible. Faith actualizes what it realizes. The Scriptures contrast the life of faith with the limitations of natural sight. Faith provides eyes for the heart. Bill Johnson see full devotion at 1Soul1Nation.
God I present my case to You,
I lay all my burdens and my dreams at Your feet.
God I believe You are a miracle working God.
You perform great and mighty things that are simply too marvellous to understand.
The great I AM performs countless miracles.
inspired by Job 5:8-9
I pray that this has encouraged and inspired you.
The Psalms have been such a source of comfort for me. So many times I have felt overwhelmed and consumed by grief. One rough day I poured my heart out to God and here it is:
I feel like a candle spluttering to stay alight
Lord I desperately want to shine like a beacon of hope
Lord I need You to light my heart
Lord I need You to reignite my spirit
Lord I need You to clarify my mind
Lord I need You
Lord I need You desperately
Who else can I possibly turn to?
No human heart can understand
My own heart cannot contain this anguish
The grief and the sorrow gnaw at my bones
Lord I’m so desperate
I need to hear Your voice
I need to know You’re here
My heart beats faintly in hope, but the pain suffocates each beat
Lord who else can I trust but You?!
You’ve promised to be my tower of strength
You’ve promised to be my safe refuge
You’ve promised me…….
You’ve promised me…….
Your Word declares that You’re faithful, steadfast and true
So come now and quickly rescue me!
Lord I fear I will lay wasted on the battleground
Lord I fear that I’ve cried out in vain
Lord I fear
But You’ve promised that Your perfect love will drive out ALL fear
But You’ve promised me that if I resist the devil he will flee
What more can I say?
What more can I do?
What more is there to face?
Lord You’ve promised to cast out ALL loneliness so why do I feel so alone?
Lord You’ve promised me…….
You’ve promised me so many things and I dare to believe that they are true
I refuse to accept that Your promises are false!
Lord You’ve said You would shelter me with Your wings
Lord my faith is weak but You’ve promised that even the smallest amount of faith can move mountains
So Lord move my mountain and cast it into the sea!
Lord restore to me Your joy
Lord restore to me Your favour
Lord restore to me health
Lord restore to me my precious inheritance
Lord will You hear my cries for mercy?
Lord will You run right now to catch me?
Lord I’m so broken, can You mend me?
Lord I’m so empty, can You fill me?
Lord this wasteland is simply too harsh
Lord this winter season is simply too barren
Lord why do I see springs of promises to have them snatched from my grasp?
Lord why do I feel like this?
Is there something I have not repented of? Then I am sorry
Lord is there some part of my heart that I have held back from You? Here it is take it all – it’s weak and failing me!
Lord I offer up to You now my broken heart, please come and mend it
I offer to You my failing spirit, please come and revive it
I offer my racing mind, please come still it and fill it with Your thoughts!
I cannot see what else there is to offer You!
But yet my heart beats only for You
But yet my lungs thirst only for Your life-giving breath
But yet my bones stir only to receive Your marrow
But yet my eyes lift to the heavens
But yet my hand still moves to pour it out to You
But yet my voice cries for mercy from the only One who can possibly help!
Human compassion dries up, but You promise to never run dry
Human understanding ceases, but You promise me that tomorrow the sun will rise and I will see Your mercy and loving-kindness afresh
Human love is flawed, but You promise to be a father of endless compassion, unfailing mercy and unconditional love!
You promise me Your ways are just and true!
So soak me now in Your mercy and grace
Pour afresh over me Your unfailing love deep into my heart
Breathe into my lungs Your breath of life
Give me a new song
Give me new words of love
Give me new words of life and truth
May You fill my body with life
May You transform me
Come wipe my tears and kiss my forehead
Come take my hand and lift me up
Come swiftly my Mighty Conqueror
Lord it’s not by my might or my power for I have no strength or authority
My authority rests in Christ alone
God it is only through Your mighty strength and Your Holy Spirit that it can be done
So Lord hear my cry
Holy Spirit please come afresh
So why would I fear the future?
For I’m being pursued only by Your goodness, beauty, mercy and unfailing love!
I shall dwell forever, throughout all my days, in the house of God and in the glorious presence of the LORD.
Psalm 23:6 AMP, MSG & TPT paraphrased
Picture from Pixabay
I had created an older version of this but somehow I deleted it – whoops!