2016 Good, Bad, Ugly/Beast or Best: YOU Decide

             
 

Yes, we are all conquerors in Christ and believe me, I try to live it.  But I admit, there are days I can identify with "Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Bad Day!"  Let's be honest!  After dealing with a flat tire, that ended up a two day process, washing machine breaking down in the midst of piles of dirty clothes, garbage disposal leaking profusely 30 minutes before guests arrive, losing my cell phone (actually my brain), a computer breakdown making work on one page a 6 hour process, with a final last straw seeing a cockroach in my pantry...I thought I had entered into the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Bad WEEK!  This all happening in a critical week of preparation trying to steward well important ministry obligations and keeping family in order...I am asking myself "What order?"  Just keep me from stroking out!  My time  and most of all my relationship with the Lord, which is a priority, was frittering away and eaten up with ridiculous distractions. I was ready to pound the wall. Good thing I didn't...I don't think my wrist could have taken it.  Instead I went to the prayer room and for a good long swim.  An amazing spirit of prophecy came forward in the prayer room.  Below is the word.  Good thing I heard it as it redeemed me from a fast downward fall into the pit of the past week:
 
Word from the prayer room in Bakersfield:  "I see you trying to build a wall with bricks and sealing with mortar, but Jesus is on the other side taking down the bricks.  He is looking at you and saying, 'Why are you putting up the bricks, I am trying to tear them down to be with  you.'" (Dan Cross, Bakersfield)
 
It was a picture and word none of us would soon forget.  It turned my day and season of the terrible and horrible into a hope and assurance. 
      So what does this have to do with the coming year?  This year is 5776 in the Hebrew calendar.  6 is the number for beast, 7 the number for completeness, and 5 the number for grace, atonement, the cross.  I believe it is pointing to the fact that we will be tested this year.  God will allow the testing so that we will be refined through His cross and emerge with greater authority.   I am not one to emphasize the enemy, though I believe in understanding and knowledge, my usual thrust is to keep my head above and seek the Lord's answers.  However, over the past month and particularly the past 2 weeks, I have kept seeing a bear, a bear claw over our nation's capitol, a bear lurking in the spirit.  In pursuing understanding, the following comes to the forefront: California has a “bear” on its flag and the governor just signed the assisted suicide bill.
  • Russia is known as a “bear” nation.  It has shown aggression on Syria.  Reports have come in that Russian ships have entered the Mediterranean as fighters test Turkey’s airspace Click here.
  • The stock market has had dizzying array of “bear” down days
  • I keep seeing a “bear” claw over Washington DC.  With elections pending for the Speaker of the House, this is signficant issue to pray for.  Not only for the elections but for those in office and who will be taking office.  Their position and policies are at risk as a “bear” would like to claw and kill them.  It is literally what we have been seeing with lack of ability for bills to advance.
So what is this bear spirit?  Daniel 7:5 describes it best, “And suddenly another beast, a second, like a bear. It was raised up on one side, and had three ribs in its mouth between its teeth. And they said thus to it:‘ Arise, devour much flesh!"  It is a spirit that would like to destroy us, nations, and in particular Christians.  War is looming and ramping as Russian aggression continues daily before our eyes.  How then do we effectively address it and what is God saying to us as Christians.  Are we to fight?  Or, just let it happen as an endtime purpose of God. 
     Personally, I cannot let go of this bear having been through a bear like week.  David killed the lion and the bear in his training as a shepherd boy.  The fullness of the gentile church promised in Romans 8:25 has not yet come.  What does the rising of the bear mean this year?  6 stands for beast.  Are we going to take it or stand up?  Interestingly today, the Lord said, look up "bear" in scriptures.  I was amazed to find "bear" in scriptures mentioned over 200 times.  As I read through the scriptures I was stunned to see the word "bear" associated with our authority and God's promised fulfillment the great majority of the time.  Though there are a number of Hebrew root words for bear, one that stands out is "nasa".  The Hebraic letters are as follows:
 
Nun :  meaning activity, life
Sheen:  meaning to consume destroy
Alef:  Strength, leader, first

"Bear" actually means much of the time in scriptures to be consumed and strengthened in life, it's meaning and purpose.   Look at one of the scriptures.  It is where we are today:
 
"And the Lord said to Joshua, “This day I will begin to exalt you in the sight of all Israel, that they may know that, as I was with Moses, so I will be with you. You shall command the priests who bear the ark of the covenant, saying, ‘When you have come to the edge of the water of the Jordan, you shall stand in the Jordan. ’”
       So Joshua said to the children of Israel, “Come here, and hear the words of the Lord your God.” And Joshua said, “By this you shall know that the living God is among you, and that He will without fail drive out from before you the Canaanites and the Hittites and the Hivites and the Perizzites and the Girgashites and the Amorites and the Jebusites: Behold, the ark of the covenant of the Lord of all the earth is crossing over before you into the Jordan. Now therefore, take for yourselves twelve men from the tribes of Israel, one man from every tribe. And it shall come to pass, as soon as the soles of the feet of the priests who bear the ark of the Lord, the Lord of all the earth, shall rest in the waters of the Jordan, that the waters of the Jordan shall be cut off, the waters that come down from upstream, and they shall stand as a heap."  Joshua 3:7-13
 
As we face a year that would like to consume and destroy us, the year of the beast (bear), God is calling us to bear, to receive and walk in His authority.  Much like the priests did, we are to take up the ark of His covenant and step forward.  As we do so, we will see the waters part.  Bearing the ark will be a life giving choice this year.   The ark contained the Word of God as it was written in those times, the tablets of Moses, the manna that provided food in the wilderness, and Aaron's rod, the rod of authority (Hebrew 9:4).  All that to say, this is the year of choice.  What are we going to feed on?  Will we feed on the news, distractions, disturbances, curses from those around us and allow it to steal our joy, peace, confidence in Him, or rise up, carry His Word, receive, and walk  in our authority in Christ. 
     At a recent gathering, the concept of being married to His Word came forth.  It is a profound concept to think about, but quite true.  God is faithful to His Word.  It is refined in the fire seven times (Psalm 12:6).  He watches over His Word to perform it (Jeremiah 1:12).  He is the Word (John 1:1).   It is a covenant of His Truth to us that cannot be changed.  The only thing that changes God's Word is us.  When we put up bricks through sin, or strongholds of our thinking, we separate ourselves from the promises of His Word.  That is why repentance is so key.  It removes bricks in our lives or thoughts and brings life and salvation (Romans 7:9-10).  As we walk in His God given authority, we truly enter His rest. The boundary lines fall in pleasant places and we find ourselves flourishing in the fruit of His Spirit, Psalm 16:5-6.  The battle has and always will be removing the obstacles, the bricks, that keep us from walking in that full identity He has called us to walk in.  How many battles within the body of Christ would be avoided if we understood these boundary lines and recognized the authority and God given place in ourselves and others? 
     All this to say, this year will be a year of challenge.  God is calling us to bear ourselves up, to tear down dividing walls between us and Him, and carry the ark of His authority.  As we do so we will see the waters part as we step forward.  The fullness of the Gentile church is at hand.  It is upon us.  From first hand experience this week, I humbly submit this to you for laughter, good medicine, but deep reflection.
 
Respectfully picking up the ark and coming out of a terrible, no good, horrible, bad attitude.  Those bricks are down, and I am embracing today the love of Christ!   May this be a year of great joy, peace and strength as we see the bear flee, in the love and presence of the Lord.  (Bet you never saw such a long sign off)
Sue Rowe
Co-founder "The Living Wall"
Co-Facilitator Transform World Trumpet Call to the Nations