Dancing with the Beast…

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A while ago, the Lord gave me a picture…Beauty and the Beast dancing–the Beast (Him) in his blue tuxedo and Beauty (me) in her beautiful yellow dress…It is the picture from which dreams are made….

The Beast, in all of his ferocity, frightening strength, and majesty has singled me out and asked me to dance.  He calls me “Belle”…His “beauty.” I accept the dance because I am mesmerized and awed by his presence.

He leads me out onto the dance floor, and I can hear the beautiful music of the orchestra fill the air, stirring my senses. He takes my hand and we start to dance. He begins leading me in a beautiful, graceful waltz, but instead of following His lead, I stop, stomp my foot and insist that he lead me in a fox trot. I am sure that He intended to dance a foxtrot with me. After all, I was right there when I consented to the dance and heard the music start.

So, instead of being the picture of beauty and grace for everyone around to see, I end up tripping all over the floor as he faithfully leads me in a waltz while I still try to dance a fox trot, convinced that the fox trot is REALLY what He wants me to dance. The picture loses the “dream” like quality it had at the beginning. I start to get angry and upset and begin to even question His ability to lead.

With the gentleness that He alone has, He cups my face in both of His hands, looks me right in the eye, gently reminding me that my beauty and grace come with my submission to His lead. He specifically designed the dance to show off my beauty, but even more importantly to display His own majesty and power. Everyone around witnesses His glory and the joy of the dance when I follow in step with Him.

This picture has marked my life…

One of the dances He initiated with me was a “single” dance, and it was a LONG one. I spent some time stomping my foot on the dance floor because of some of the painful, hard steps in that dance, sacrificing some moments of potential beauty and grace. Now though, as I look back, I am so very grateful for the lessons, the sorrows and the joys in that dance. My leader knows…

These days, our dances have a different rhythm–marriage, living in a foreign country, challenges, joys. There are times when I still stop and question, when he holds me tighter to keep me from running into others or when I try to anticipate the next dance and get ahead of His lead. With each of my false moves, He patiently and lovingly embraces me in my questions and stumbling…His grace….

I am sure of only two things in this season–the dance of this moment and the Leader of my dance. My beauty and His glory are brightest when I submit to being led into new, unexpected places by One who alone knows how to get me there.

His “Songbird”….

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I LOVE to sing, not because I am good at it, but because the Lord constantly seems to be giving me a song…

Growing up at home, we only listened to Christian radio (A shout out for Evie, Amy Grant, Steve Green, Larnell Harris, and Sandy Patti! ūüėÄ) and classical music. ¬†Friends laugh at my limited music¬†repertoire including only¬†two genres–except for¬†Barry Mantalo’s¬†“Feelings” and “You write the songs that make the young girls cry.” ¬†Those were on the 8 track demo¬†that came with our stations wagon. ¬†I secretly listened¬†to it while Mom and Dad were gone.¬†ūüėā”

I laugh, but I am actually grateful. ¬†The¬†Lord speaks to me in song–in prayer times, in the morning, in the middle of a conversation. ¬†There’s a lot of music He has put in to draw from and very little “interference” music. ¬†I even¬†found out a couple years ago, that my middle name “Linnette” means “songbird.”

In the last few years, I have seen Him speak to people in transformational ways through song. ¬†Last year on several occasions¬†I sang something He brought to mind, and someone cried, another received¬†a picture,¬†or a sense of God’s love.

It’s not like I have a great voice. ¬†I don’t. ¬†There’s nothing to take credit for. ¬†It’s HIM!

Right before Christmas, I was at my church and a woman I have never met before from our prophetic team (people trained and tested by mature believers who have the gift of prophecy)¬†gave me a “word.”

She said she saw me with a guitar, asking¬†me if I sang. ¬†She continued by saying that she sensed¬†that I was called not just to sing but to change atmospheres. ¬†ūüė≥ WOW!!! ¬†Jesus has the¬†power to change hearts/atmospheres, and He can do it through His¬†songs!!

Shortly after that, I felt prompted¬†to try out for our church worship team–for the first time in my life. ¬†Last Sunday was my first Sunday. ¬†What an incredible joy it was to look out over His body and sing–sing because He has called me to, because He wants to change atmospheres.

Our team in unity felt called to “sing” in the first service for healing. ¬†My friend with cancer and pain was at that service. ¬†She texted me Monday afternoon to say she had her first night of no pain on Sunday night, and it has continued.

That’s just one example, but praise Jesus that He has the power to change things–ANYTHING. ¬†Nothing is impossible with Him. ¬†He is my Father…The KING!

“All Hail the Power of Jesus’ Name…”,

Pete and Deb Ochs

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This next month is FULL of events.

I have been asked to serve over this next year as a ‚Äúmentor‚ÄĚ in an ‚ÄúAccelerator‚ÄĚ program for non-profit and for-profit promising entrepreneurs. Our first event is happening next week.

Early February, we are hosting a week with Pete and Deb Ochs‚ÄĒan amazing business couple from Wichita, KS. ¬† God has both humbled and used this couple to build his kingdom in unique ways, including¬†starting a successful business¬†in a maximum security prison in the US while also discipling and investing in the inmate employees. ¬†You can see their story here.

While here, Pete and Deb will be intersecting with the South African business community in many different venues/settings around personal humility and living His kingdom in business settings.  We will also be facilitating two Journeys of Generosity during that week.

The Lord recently reminded me that the next month has NOTHING to do with events but everything to do with Breakthroughs.

South Africa has been at a point of crisis, and other countries in Africa are as well.  There is such a profound need for the children of the King and citizens of His kingdom to rise up in this country and continent, and bring His kingdom in Africa as it is in heaven.

I ask you to pray with me for‚ÄĒTRANSFORMATIONAL BREAKTHROUGHS!!