Strengthening for the Journey

We have moved into 2023, another year of God’s Favor, but we must be careful not to pray away the mountains that the Lord may send our way. We must understand that the Lord is always strengthening us for this journey.  So, there will be times that the mountains just won’t move, so we may have to go around them or maybe even over them. As we are being strengthened, He will show us how to flex our muscles of faith, strength, hope and courage. We can’t afford to allow our mind, heart, or soul to become cluttered with thoughts of discontent and defeat.  However, it may require us to flip our thinking on its head and rather than fighting the storms, avoiding the deserts, patching ourselves up, and fixing the cracks, we must embrace the ideas that the Lord will use every method that He can to make us more like Him and He is not going to give up!   

Although it may get tough, the Lord is always on our side, especially when adversity comes. I read that “it is impossible to succeed on this journey without going through adversity. Impossible! If we are successful and have not experienced adversity, we can be sure that someone else has experienced it for us. If we are experiencing it without succeeding, there is a good chance somebody else will succeed one day because of us. Either way, there is no success without adversity.”  Winston Churchill wisely stated, “Success is never final; failure is never fatal; it is the courage to continue that counts,” [especially when the journey gets tough and the mountains are high].

Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill brought low; the crooked places shall be made straight and the rough places smooth; the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together; for the mouth of the Lord has spoken.

Isaiah 40:4-5 KJV

We’ve entered a New Year, 365 days of endless possibilities with God’s Grace and Favor. 

 “This is a time to get organized and to tie up loose ends. [We] need to be clear and unencumbered for the next leg of our journey. [We] have already come a long way. Pause and consider where [we} were a year ago and put it behind you. This is a new day with new possibilities”. 

Spirit of Prophecy by Marsha burns

As we continue to listen to the Holy Spirit, we will not only hear His instructions and directions for our journey, but we will hear the answers to our many prayers.  The Lord promises that:

Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him."

As I give you the first post of 2023, I am asking for your continued prayers as the Lord extends my territory.  I pray that I hunger for His Word like never before and I remain humble and obedient to His voice. 

Don’t Miss Your Miracle!

Copyright: allarudenko

This may be somewhat of a weird introduction to this week’s episode, but I almost missed my miracle, which is why I’m saying to you, “Don’t Miss Your Miracle”

Well, my story began about 4 years ago, when my husband broke his ankle after he slipped on the ice.  Being the man that he is, not knowing that it was broke, decided to cinch up his boots real tight and walk on it for TEN whole days.   As I casually passed by him and saw that his ankle was rather swollen, we realized that there may be a problem.  I’m sure it was a first for the x-ray tech, when we told him that he had fallen 10 days prior, but MIRACULOUSLY the ankle healed without surgery. 

At this point you may be wondering why I’m telling you all of this, but stick with me… About six weeks later, however, when my husband went for a follow up on the ankle, and it had begun to swell again and the swelling never when down.  Now one of his ankles is almost twice as big as the other and now somewhat disfigured (a pic is posted on my personal FB page on 12/11).  After going to several doctors, with no viable medical solution other than reconstructive surgery, so the past 4 years, my prayer was for the swelling to go down and it look normal again, but it didn’t. 

So, your question is how is this a miracle?   Because what I had failed to realize was that every doctor that we visited was astounded that my husband could even walk at all and without excruciating pain.  I’d “Missed the Miracle, because it didn’t look the way that I thought it should.  Everyone’s situation may be different, and this may not apply to you, but for some of us, The Holy Spirit wants us to know that we may be looking at our Miracle and just NOT realize it.  This is only one of my life examples, but I am sure that there are many others.

EPILOGUE to my story:  By God’s Grace, my husband has worked as a security guard for the past 25 years and continues to work security 8, 10 and sometimes 12 hours a day.  Remember, I said that the ankle has been swollen for the past 4 years, and for the past 3 years, the Lord has blessed him with a post that he is able to sit, with minimal walking.  Only the Lord could grant us such Favor. 

My prayer is that your prayers are answered, and your miracles happen, but it just may not look the way you thought it would…

Trust in the Lord and do good.
    Then you will live safely in the land and prosper.
Take delight in the Lord,
    and he will give you your heart’s desires.

Psalm 37:3-4

The Waiting is Worth It…

Early last week, I was listening to a message about Mary and Elizabeth in Luke 1. I won’t go into the whole story, but the essence of the story for me was the fact that the Lord waited until Elizabeth was 60’something before He blessed her with a child.  I’m sure that it was not a coincidence about her age; since I’m 60’something too.  However, my message today applies to all ages.  I want everyone to know that “The Waiting is Worth It”.  There’s absolutely no benefit in rushing the Lord’s process.  No matter the length of time that we must wait, He is teaching us to be patient while He continues to perfect us, grow us, and mature us.  So, as we pursue our purpose, success, and greatness, we realize that it ALL will happen in His Divine Timing.  He will give us what we need, not necessarily what we want, exactly when we need it

The Scriptures say:

15 The eyes of all look to you in hope;
    you give them their food as they need it.
16 When you open your hand,
    you satisfy the hunger and thirst of every living thing.

Psalm 145:15-16 NLT

Unfortunately, if we’re honest, we tend to compare, so we may wonder “Why did I have to wait until I was 40 to get married and she got married at 25″, or “I’m 60 and I’m still waiting to get what the Lord has for me”.  As I’ve said, more than once over the past few years, I am living my best life; I know that I am truly living on purpose.  The Lord said to me, “Now you understand why you had to wait, because I had to know that I could trust you”Yes, the Waiting is Worth it!  It doesn’t matter what you are waiting for, the Lord needs to know that you can handle it, that means spouse, new career, new house, new business, money, fame, influence, etc. 

Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time:

1 Peter 5:6a

The icing on the cake for me was when I got to my first appointment early last week.  I was talking to my client, who by the way is my age.  The Lord has just escalated her to an executive position with everything that she’d ever wanted.  The Lord has so much more for us, we just need to get out of His way.  You may have to trust me on this one, but no matter what you’re waiting for, the Waiting is Worth It!

Now, on the other hand, have you ever gotten something that you would have rather not have, because you were impatient?  I know I have and in almost all cases, you cannot give it back.  There are just some things that we don’t want from the Lord until we’re ready.  In the meantime, we must stay on track and allow the Lord to order our steps, because there is greatness ahead of us.  We must keep sowing, even when we don’t see the harvest…

And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season [at just the right time] we shall reap, if we faint not.

But remember, our work doesn’t stop while we are waiting. 

Be ye strong therefore and let not your hands be weak: for your work shall be rewarded.

2 Chronicles 15:7

We must understand that although we are anointed for the task at hand, we must continue to perfect our skills, if we want to be great.  I am by no means promoting conceit, but we can no longer just settle for good…

28 Hast thou not known? hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? there is no searching of his understanding.

29 He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength.

30 Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall:

31 But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.

Isaiah 40:28-31

Living on Purpose

Is your life today what you pictured a year ago?

My life is even better that I could have ever imagined. I’m learning to love myself the way the Lord loves me. However, it is still a daily challenge and I have to constantly remind myself not to compare myself to others I see on social media. Many times, we discover that it may not be what it seems. It’s not about material possessions, fame, influence, or fortune, it’s about being comfortable in your own skin.

I’m by no means boasting… it’s not that my life is perfect or that I don’t have daily frustrations and discouragements, but I am in a place in my life that I am grateful for every moment. As I posted a few months ago, I’m learning not to Sweat the Small Stuff! I’m taking it one day at a time, one step at a time…

The steps of a good man [woman] are ordered by the Lord: and he delighteth in his way. Psalms 37:23

Our Journey Continues…

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If you’d prefer to listen to this blog post, please click the link to our podcast

As we move into 2023, I have so many thoughts swirling around in my mind about what the Lord has in store for us in the coming year.  As our journey continues, we all know that life will continue to happen, but in the midst of it all, the Lord has a plan.  Throughout 2022 and many years before, the Holy Spirit, if we allowed Him, has spoken through us in the moment when someone needed to be encouraged the most, even when we didn’t realize it.  Therefore, we must continue to be mindful of not only our assignment, purpose and calling, but our gifts and talents.  I read that “our nothing in the Lord’s hands becomes something”.  We will have a supernatural transformation of our perspective, especially as it pertains to those aspects of our life that we consider insignificant.  The more we pour out the anointing that the Lord has placed in us, the more it will increase. 

I’m reminded of the story of Elisah and the widow.  When she asked the prophet for help, he did not give her money.  He said, “What do you have in your house?”   She said, “I have nothing, but a small jar of oil“.  He told her to go out, borrow jars and start pouring. It wasn’t until she stopped pouring, that the oil ceased.  So, have we stopped pouring?

With our lives changing so rapidly, we must resist the desire to simply bury our gift out of fear and just move on.  We know that is not just a very bad idea, but for us, it is not an option.  Remember the parable about the servants and the talents, to refresh your memory you might want to read Matthew 25:14-30.  Let’s just say that it didn’t end well for one of the servants.

As I was reflecting on my last 12 months, which now seems to have flown by, I thought about one Friday morning in early September, when my business coach, who is an expert in digital marketing and a pastor of a church in NY, sent me his latest business-oriented podcast. The topic of the podcast was about branding.  So, entrepreneurs, who are reading this, may want to pay close attention. I’d always thought that branding was simply business logos and brochures, but he said that branding is from the inside out, we must bring our authentic selves to the table. He said that the clarity in which our brand is speaking, the greater it will shape the impact we have on others, which was right in line with my new venture into life coaching.  I want to inspire people, primarily women to release whatever is holding them back from moving into their destiny and living on purpose.  I want to encourage and empower those who struggle with self-worth and help them to see themselves as God sees them. 

In my excitement, I scheduled a coaching call with my business coach and the Holy Ghost downloads flowed right back to Preparing for the Journey.   We must make sure that we listen to the small details that the Holy Spirit gives us as we go along this journey called life.  With the dream and vision that we have been given by the Lord, He may have shown us a glimpse of where He is taking us, but again, we have no idea how we are going to get there.  He continues to move us beyond our current understanding, desires, limitations, and obstacles. 

We must be willing to expand beyond where we are and be willing to make changes necessary for our own good and the good of those around usWhen we stay close to God, He will direct our steps.  We must keep moving forward, heading in the right direction because every step counts. 

Spirit of Prophecy, Marsha Burns 9-26-22

The Lord is expanding my territory and increasing my influence, which means that I will have a measurable impact on others’ decisions, behaviors, and to affect their outcomes. I must accept this assignment with humility and obedience, not popularity, NOT for me, but for His Glory! 

What’s ahead for you in the coming year?

Our Journey Continues and the Lord promises that…

“Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him.” 1 Corinthians 2:9

Change is Inevitable

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We don’t always have to make change happen, in our lives, in our careers, or in our businesses, we simply must allow it to happen and not resist it!  We can’t allow our expectations, resistance, or fear of the outcome to influence our ability to change when necessary.  Change is sometimes difficult to navigate, but we can take only one step at a time, as we transition into the unfamiliar.  We cannot afford to stand still, while waiting to see what others may do before we take another step.

In Isaiah 41:10, the Lord says, Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.

The Lord is constantly telling us how to build our lives, our careers and yes, our businesses and He’s given us a firm foundation.  I heard the other day that we know what to do to be successful; whatever way we want to define it, but without wisdom we won’t apply what we hear from the Holy Spirit.  The Lord will tell us how to build, but we must do the building. 

Although we would rather not discuss this reality, failure is an acceptable part of success and without it we will not get out of the starting gate.  Many times, failure is also inevitable, however, we must know how to manage what we cannot avoid.  The fear of failure will make you want to bury our gift and pretend that we must not have truly heard God calling. But we must understand that the Lord has us in a security net that allows you to fail safely*. 

So, let’s face change head on!  There will never be the perfect time to take the next step, if we don’t sow, we will not reap. 

“Farmers who wait for perfect weather [will] never plant [and]  If they watch every cloud, they [will] never harvest.   

Ecclesiastes 11:4 NLT

Above all, we must realize that we have God’s Favor, even when faced with adversity, ask Joseph.  Remember the pit, the prison, and the palace.  Dr. Dharius Daniels defines God’s Favor as undeserved, unexplainable, irrational, preferential treatment. His Favor puts you in the right place at the right time, but we must remain humble.  God must be able to trust us with what He has given us.  Our gifts will get us the palace, just like Joseph, but our heart will get us our purpose.  We can’t forget what the Lord has given us and why He’s given it to us!  

As the Apostle Paul said, “I’m not saying that I have this all together, that I have it made. But I am well on my way, reaching out for Christ, who has so wondrously reached out for me. Friends, don’t get me wrong: By no means do I count myself an expert in all of this, but I’ve got my eye on the goal, where God is beckoning us onward—to Jesus. I’m off and running, and I’m not turning back”.  Philippians 3:12-14 MSG

*Taken from “Facing your Giants in Business” by United Christian Broadcasters (UCB))


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This week may be a week of NOT TODAY!! The phrase “NOT Today” must be written in bold letters, in All caps, and with several exclamation marks. But, the preferred method is spoken with the voice of righteous indignation. Some of may have encountered a few of those days already, maybe last week or even the week before.  However, this is very interesting, considering that this week we will probably be spending time with friends and family for the Thanksgiving holiday. For some this may be the first in-person holiday that we’ve had in a very long time. 

Now, normally I would advise people against giving the enemy too much credit, especially when they run into a tough situation or unforeseen circumstance.  Believe it or not, there are times when the Lord is a source of our frustration because he’s stretching us outside our comfort zone. He knows that we grow stronger physically, mentally, and spiritually when we are met with resistance and opposition.  But there are other times when we must tell the enemy NOT TODAY!  We will not entertain one taunt, threat, distraction, discouragement, or setback.

The Bible says that, “No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue[even our own tongue] that shall rise against thee in judgment thou shalt condemn”. 

The New Living Translation says it this way, “But in that coming day no weapon turned against you will succeed. You will silence every voice raised up to accuse you. These benefits are enjoyed by the servants of the Lord; their vindication will come from me. I, the Lord, have spoken!”  Isaiah 54:17

We must remember that although spiritual warfare is real, our enemy is not people.  So, I would suggest that we pray for all of those that may cross our path this week. 

Take a moment to be still, be slow to speak and listen to what the Holy Spirit is saying…

Stay Connected…

Copyright: olleg1

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God Forbid! But have you ever lost your phone?  In that moment, did it feel like maybe the world had stopped?  Isn’t it interesting that for some, even if we were able to borrow a phone to make a call, we don’t have family phones numbers committed to memory, which may I suggest that you might want to write them down somewhere, just in case!  But, luckily, in today’s world of technology, our phone carriers can ship us another phone overnight and, in most cases, recreate all our contacts and recover our pics.

Well, as we consider just how devasting the thought of losing our phone would be, what happens when we find ourselves disconnected from the Holy Spirit? I would like us to consider that although the Holy Spirit dwells within us, it is possible to lose our connection.  I would venture to guess that we almost always know where our phones are, so that we can stay connected to the outside world.  So, how does this apply to staying connected in our world within?

The Holy Spirit keeps taking me back to the wilderness story and as you may remember, just like in that story, the Lord may be taking us the long way around because we’re just not ready to go to short route. So, it is critical that we stay connected, because we simply don’t have all the details needed to make the trip!  No matter how much God talks to us, there are certain things that He is going to leave out.  There are things we just can’t take right now… And HE knows it. So, how often do we grow impatient and just hang up in the middle of the conversation?  Although we may be saying, God why is this taking so long, He is saying we are still not ready.  We may think that we are ready, but we are not.

As I mentioned last week, I still don’t have the answer to whether I should go back to my church, or bigger yet, I still don’t have a clear picture of where the Lord is taking me. I know that I’m headed in the right direction, however, I don’t have His final answer.  It seems like a reasonable and simple request, especially regarding the church, but I must realize that I may not be ready for what lies ahead and until I’m ready, it’s just going to take time.  If He would allow me to take the short route and go by way of the Philistine country, I could get beat up and I might want to go back the way I came; back to my old ways, back to Egypt.

As the Lord perfects and matures us, we grow stronger in our faith, we become more prepared for battle and we are more sensitive to His Spirit, His direction, and decisions because easier, while we are waiting for His answers.

And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns. Philippians 1:6

Philippians 1:6

Let’s take another look at that vital organ that we talked about early, you know the one I mean, the one that keeps us functioning daily, our phones!  We have access to everything we need at our fingertips.  But on the other hand, when we find that we can’t breathe without it, possibly we have become too reliant on it.  We need the Holy Spirit to be our lifeline, the one that if we lose the connection, we can’t breathe without Him.  He is the one that will lead and guide us along the path that the Lord has laid for us.  Our phones are simply a tool that if used properly can help us to be productive, but if we lost it, we would still survive…

It’s imperative that we ALWAYS take a quiet moment to listen to what the Holy Spirit is saying…

Missed Moments

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Do you have those close friends or relatives that you don’t talk to often, but you are very close?  You may see them on Facebook from time to time, but as life happens, years may go by without actually talking to each other.  But, in a moment, the Holy Spirit will say just call them.  Now this is the challenge, do we take the moment to call or do we put it off or maybe you just text to say Hi. 

Now be honest, how many of you are thinking that I may have lost a close friend?  Well, you can breathe, that’s not the case… But how many of you thought of a close friend or relative that you haven’t spoken to and maybe you need to call?  There are many different scenarios that may come to your mind.  But for me, a few days ago, I received a call from a close friend, and I must admit that when I saw his name on my phone, unfortunately, I knew it wasn’t good news.  He told me that a friend of ours had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and the outlook was very bleak. 

This blog post is NOT about death, because we know that it’s not over until God says so, we must keep praying, because miracles still happen every day! Mike was the 2nd person in a week I know that was diagnosed with cancer… but what’s interesting is that as I was preparing this message, I was listening to a message about God is a Healer, coincidence I don’t think so and then when that one ended, I switched to another message and the woman was singing about “A Season of Miracles”, so I posted it and within minutes Mike responded to my post.  So, although I had been reluctant to talk to him, I called him immediately and we had an amazing conversation.  The Holy Spirit always works in mysterious ways. But unfortunately, I also realized that although I worked with Mike for many years, there were moments that I missed, because we were just too busy.

This episode is about LIFE, and we really can’t afford to miss a moment and although, I’m almost sure that we may say that all the time, do we live life to the fullest, being grateful for every moment.  We must admit that the pandemic has changed a lot of things, but it should have made us even more aware that we need to say in better contact with each other than ever before.  We have technology that allows us to see each other’s faces even when we are thousands of miles apart.  Oftentimes, the Holy Spirit will bring someone to mind that you haven’t spoken to, but what about those moments with friends and family that may live right down the street or even in our own homes.  Are we pushing past those moments when our daughter or son may be out of sorts, but they really don’t want to talk about it and we are kinda busy anyway?  Or maybe our spouse is a little more irritable lately, but we know that it too shall past.

Then, on the other hand, a friend texts us to invite us for lunch, but we don’t have time, we’re very busy at work, not realizing that our friend just really needed to talk.  However, technology can be a two-edged sword, because I believe that we have lost the art of communication, to text is faster and easier.  But now, we don’t have the opportunity to read the body language, or sense how people are feeling by just their tone of voice…

Life is too precious, we can’t afford to miss a moment, especially those quiet moments when we need to listen to what the Holy Spirit is saying…

Do Not Grow Weary in the Wilderness

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As it is most times, I was lying in bed early one Friday morning, even before I had finished last week’s blog post and I was wondering how long Holy Ghost Downloads blog would last.  I must admit that I tend to grow tired of ideas and to be honest, especially when they don’t get the response that I expect, but we’ve talked about that before.  So, pray for me… But then, I began to say, in my mind, I’m beginning to become weary, the Holy Spirit said very clearly, “Do not become weary in welldoing”, thus this week’s blog post, “Do Not Grow Weary in the Wilderness!” 

So, what are you saying to yourself?  What decisions are you making in your mind?  What are others saying about what you should do? Are you in a place of uncertainty?  Are you growing weary in your efforts to keep moving?  As we said last week, you may be in the wilderness.  Unfortunately, it is in these times, that we may seek the advice of others and yes, it is possible to get ungodly counsel from godly people. So, we must know what advice to listen to. Many times, our advancement, our ability to move is determined by the advice we don’t take.  If you are like me, your thoughts will wear you out, especially when you’re in the wilderness. 

For the children of Israel, the wilderness was the place between Egypt, the place of slavery, and the Promised Land.  ** So, listen very carefully, there is someone, including myself, that needs to hear that the Lord has delivered us from our own place of bondage, the prison of our mind and although the wilderness may feel like a place of stagnation, maybe even boring and non-productive, it’s a place of the Lord’s provision and protection until we are ready for where He needs us to go, to the place that He has promised us. 

Recently I read a quote from Laynie Travis that says, “The Lord does not call qualified people; He qualifies those that He calls”.  It is for that reason that He does not expect us to have our act together.  But at times, we may really believe that we are on the right track and things are moving full speed ahead.  But then things seem to get a little blurry and we find ourselves stubbornly holding on to our plan and trying to get the Lord to follow our ideas on how things should work.  Then we begin to wonder, why have we stop moving?  We feel like we’re stuck… It is then that the Lord may be taking us the long way around because we are not ready to fight what may be ahead of us.  So, although it takes longer than we had hoped, we cannot grow weary in the wilderness.  The Bible says if we seek His will in all [we] do, He will show [us] which path to take.  The Lord knows what’s best for us and His timing is always perfect! 

So, as I ponder my original questions, how long will Holy Ghost Downloads podcast last?  What if the His downloads stop?  The Holy Spirit said to me that as long as I am a willing vessel the oil of anointing will continue to flow …and that goes for you too.  I’m sure that that will be a future episode.