restoring desire

Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but desire fulfilled is a tree of life.

Prov. 13:12 (NASB)

Fifty leaders from our revival network gather to talk about restoring desire and to dream together.  I am humbled to be able to share with them.  Seeing the light go on in their eyes as understanding dawns makes my heart sing.  These precious men and women who have a burning longing for revival and a passion for His Kingdom.  It is such an honor to journey together with them.

As we gathered in Yei this weekend we watched the love of God mend the broken hearted and give permission and validation to dream again and dream bigger than before.  We got in DreamTeams and dreamed with God over our lives, our communities and this nation.  It was such JOY!

Thank you for your love and prayers!   Here is a little of what we talked about.  I hope it blesses you as much as it blessed us ~Michele

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Setting Our Desire

We were created to desire.  We learn that in the book of Beginnings, Genesis.  It is the first time the word desire is used in the Bible.  God would not have created the trees in the garden to be desirable (See Gen 2:9.) if we were not supposed to desire them.  The problem comes when our desires are wrongly engaged.  Hence the fall.  (See Gen 3:6).  If desire is not rightly engaged, there is a great risk it will be wrongly captivated.  That simple.

One of the most important elements in embracing the supernatural walk God has created us for involves the intentional setting of our desire.  Our desires set up a foundation for the things we desire to manifest. What we desire, we turn in toward. What we turn in toward, we focus on. What we focus on, we empower.

Most of us have probably heard very few if any teachings on how to set our desires. But if we do not actively engage our desires internally, and fix them on things above, there is a good chance our desires will be engaged by the external world around us.

“If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth.”

Colossians 3:1-2

This verse could also be translated, “Set your desire on things above.”

How do we fix our desire above? We set our minds there, the seat of our feelings and understanding. Setting our desire on things above means literally to exercise our minds, to direct our thoughts, to seek after those things that are above.

We exercise our thought lives; we dream about the things we desire to experience with God. And that process of dreaming actually creates a place of expectancy, which can then lead into full-blown faith.  How fun is that?!?!

Healing the Broken Hearted

But what about when our life journey has literally beaten the ability to desire right out of us?  Expectation delayed makes the heart sick, weak and frail but earnest petitions, specific desire fulfilled brings forth a tree producing life.

It is in these broken places when even our strength to “want” is laid low, we take the shattered pieces of our heart and offer them to the One Who loves to set captives free and bind up those crushed in spirit.

Ps 147:3

He heals (as mending by stitching, making whole) the brokenhearted (the ones whose hearts (seat of affections, feelings, courage and will) have been torn to pieces, crushed, maimed and completely shattered by violence), and binds up (wrapping firmly, covering, governing, enveloping and enclosing) their wounds, pain, sorrows, affliction, injuries, hurts and griefs {idols}.  (MEV- Michele’s Extended Version)

He takes the pieces of our hearts and mends them together as if by stitching.  Have you ever mended a ripped garment?  What is the strongest part of the garment?  Exactly.  The part that has been stitched together again.

Could this be what 2 Cor 1:3-4 is all about?

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.

2 Co 1:3-4

And He bind up our wounds.

The word wound there a is very, very interesting one in Hebrew.  It means pain and grief.  It also is a word that can mean an idol.  The places of our pain, our sorrow, our grief can (if not offered to Jesus) can become places of idolatry.  When a sorrow becomes so great it clouds our vision of God or distorts His Truth, it becomes an idol.  If we allow a broken area to grow into an idol, this idolatry sets up an demonic altar, a seat for a false government to rest and operate from.  Many who minister in inner healing call this an entry point  for demonic oppression.

But God is so good, so very kind.  If we let Him, HE binds up even these wounds.  Literally He governs over them, wrapping them firmly in His love so that His government trumps every other thing that thinks it has authority to rule from our pain.  But we have to allow Him into these places to govern over them…

Restoring Desire

First we offer our broken pieces and our wounds back to Jesus.  And He heals them and sets us free.  Then the process of having desire restored is a journey of yielding to Him.

Delight yourself also in the LORD, and He shall give you the desires of your heart.

Ps 37:4

This verse literally means be soft and pliable in the Lord and He shall make, add, heal and restore the desires of your heart.  We stay close and soft in His Presence and He does it!

Contrary to what I have commonly heard preached, this verse is not talking about getting God to give you a Cadillac or better real estate.  It is talking about having the ability to desire restored and made whole again!

Now Papa is a good Daddy who knows what we need. He wants to take care of us.  He even wants to bless us beyond our wildest imagination.  But we need to get out of the way and let Him do it!

You know, when my kids want to hang out and just be with me, there is nothing I wouldn’t give them.  I ply them with treats and special times.  However when their entire focus is on a toy truck and they demand their way, it really robs the joy of being able to bless them.  And I hold back.  Not because I don’t want to bless them.  I do.  More than they know.  But I hold back because I do not want the focus of their desires to be on the blessing.

I want them to see rightly placed desires, a heart focused on relationship, attracts the blessing that comes with relationship.  But when our hearts are focused on what we can get from relationship, that rapidly disintegrates into manipulation.  The Scripture tells us manipulation is really the same thing as witchcraft.  Eeeek.  So I want to train my kids in Kingdom principles and protocols in a relationship with someone they do see how to rightly relate to a God they are still learning see.

But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.

Matt 6:33

Guess what seek first  means?  I bet you know!   Desire first the reign, rule and realm of God and His righteousness, His equity, His character and ALL these things {food, clothing, housing, transportation} will be added to you.  And here we are full circle back to where we started: the importance of setting our desire on Him.

Rightly set desire creates an attraction for the provision of heaven.

“If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you.”

John 15:7

Rightly placed desire establishes a platform for faith’s demonstration. Simply put: If I don’t dream it, I’ll never do it.  One reason we have so much hope deferred in the Body is we don’t actively cultivate godly desire. History is birthed in place of dreaming with God and engaging His desires in the earth.

So we are dreaming with God here in South Sudan letting Him write His Story in our hearts and through our lives as we yield to Him.  How about you my friend?  What are you dreaming with Him wherever you are right now?  History is being written by what we engage by our desire.  What kind of history do you want to write with your life?

ACTIVATIONS:

Want to grow in desiring God or realign your desires with His?  Here are few little things that might be helpful.

  • Write a list of what you desire to experience in God and through Him.  Thank Him for each one.  Write this list for you personally, for your family, for your community and for your nation.  Stumped at where to start?  Ask Holy Spirit.
  • Take a piece of paper.  Think of times your heart has been torn or weakened by disappointment or violently crushed by pain or grief.  Rip it into three pieces.  Offer those pieces back to God.  Receive His love.  Take some wide tape and tape the paper back together along the tears.  Realize that the mended parts are stronger than that which was untouched.  Papa really does work all things together for good to those who love Him, to those who are the called according to His purpose.  (See Rom 8:28)  Use this as a reason to step into thanking God for His healing.
  • Feeling dry hard and crusty with this whole desire thing?  How do hard sponges get soft and pliable again?  They soak in water, right?  Ask Papa to teach you how to live as a sponge in Him.