Archive for the ‘Heavenly realms’ Tag

Announcing My New Book!   3 comments

I am happy to announce the publishing of my new book!

Face To Face, Encounters With Jesus, is a series of my individual visions and prophetic encounters, face to face with the Lord Jesus Himself, in Heavenly Realms. It is a progression into intimacy with Jesus, our Bridegroom King. The chapters are like photos from an engagement album, beginning with the early days of love’s first awakening and ending with the wedding day.

This relationship is available to all believers in Christ. I pray that as you read my experiences, you may be able to enter into them and ascend into Heavenly realms also. Once there, Jesus will take you on journeys of your own.

Come, He is waiting !

[All proceeds from this book will go to Iris Global, an International Mission founded by Rolland and Heidi Baker, with whom we have been privileged to minister.]

 

The High Diving Board   5 comments

Worship had begun in the small home group meeting and the presence of Jesus was filling the room. I closed my eyes to focus on Him and He immediately surprised me by saying, “So, where shall we go?” Then He grinned and said, “Why don’t we just jump off the high diving board?”

I hardly had time to think. Instantly I saw myself climbing up a very high ladder and walking carefully out to the end of a diving board. By now I knew I was in the Spirit since I never would have done that in the natural. I stood there for a moment trying to get up the nerve to jump. Suddenly, from behind me, Jesus came running down the board, grabbed me in His arms, launching us into the air and we landed in the ocean below! It was so surprising and wild that I almost laughed out loud and had to cover my face with my hands! Laughing, He took my hand and we began to swim deeper and further out until the shoreline disappeared. I looked at Him and said, “You know I really can’t swim!” and He just laughed and said, “It’s o.k., you don’t need to. You’re with Me.” On and on we swam, further out and deeper still. The deeper we went, the lighter it became, not darker as I would have thought. And as the light increased, so did the glory.

At that point in the vision, the natural realm and the Heavenly realm began to overlap. I started to feel a great concern for Kevin, a young man in the group who was experiencing a great deal of trouble. I really wanted to just take him with me, out here in the ocean and let Jesus minister to him. I didn’t want to seem inappropriate but we were all close friends, so finally I got up and went to the other end of the room where he was sitting. I whispered to him, “I just want to lay my hand on your shoulder and try to be a sort of channel between you and Heaven. Is that o.k.?”

“Oh yes, that’s fine.” he said, ” I trust you.”

So I knelt behind his chair and just put my hand on his shoulder. I really wasn’t even praying for his needs but only asking Jesus to take him away and minister to him. At the same time, Jesus and I were still swimming in the ocean. The glory was so very deep.

Suddenly we began to swim upward to the surface. When we broke through the water, we were in the Throne Room, standing on the Sapphire Sea! There was so much light and so much glory that tears were pouring down my face. Jesus was so beautiful and bright with light streaming from Him in every direction.

When the light began to subside, I noticed that we had brought Kevin with us as well! He was lying nearby on the “sea” in a fetal position with his head down like a sleeping infant. Jesus looked at him with so much compassion. But it was interesting. There was compassion but not concern. He knew what He would do and that Kevin would be all right. He motioned to a large angel nearby who picked Kevin up like a baby and carried him right to the Father on the Throne. As Father saw him coming He had the same compassion in His voice as He said, “Come here, my son!” Then He took Kevin in His big arms like a baby and just held him close.

Jesus turned His attention back to me now as we began to dance on the Sapphire Sea. It was wonderful ball room dancing, on the sea and up in the air, turning and twirling and landing again. Then I heard the worship leader from our home group and I knew he must be there somewhere dancing as well. He was breathlessly laughing, playing his guitar and singing, “dancing with You, twirling and spinning”!

There are times when the 2 realms overlap. Since we were created from the dust of this earth and the very breath of God, we have the ability to walk in both realms, sometimes even simultaneously. There are also times when we can take others with us or when the Lord chooses to take a whole group away together in His presence as He did in Exodus 24: 9-11. He’s very creative!

Always remember – there are no limitations in the Spirit. And in the Spirit, you can fly. (Isa.40:31, 2 Cor.12: 2-4)

* For more on this subject, see the category Creatures Of Both Realms on this blog.

Under The Aquarium and The Ruby Slippers   3 comments

In a dream I seemed to be in a large aquarium, something like Sea World.  I was with a group of people in a spacious underground room where there were sofas and chairs scattered around.  The group of people was small compared to the room.

Instead of the usual large aquarium that was behind a glass wall at eye level, this one was just a couple of feet above our heads and we were looking up to see the fish.  There were many beautiful varieties of fish and other sea creatures but no predators.  My attention was drawn to a group of small sea turtles coming my direction.  They were about the size of dinner plates.  As they drew near I happened to see some of their feet poking through the water into the air around me!  Startled, I reached up and touched the water.  I had assumed I was underneath a glass ceiling but this was obviously not the case!  I poked my hand right up through the water and pulled it back again, laughing.  I wasn’t getting splashed or wet at all and no drops were falling on me but there was no barrier between me and the water world above.  It was staying where it belonged but it was obvious that I could have gone up into it at will.  The other people in the room seemed to understand this and were not frightened by it.  They merely smiled at my discovery.

Then one of the others handed me their baby to look after for awhile.  He was an adorable little thing and came to me gladly.  While I was carrying him around I noticed some seats at a higher level near the water above, so I took him up there.  He was delighted with the water and being able to see the fish up close just above him.  Laughing, he put his hands up into the water to play with them.  I found it interesting that he accepted the water above and the fish gladly with no fear, as if it was normal.

Now I heard a piano and recognized the voice of a favorite worship leader from the International House of Prayer in Kansas City, USA.  Picking up the baby, I went to join the crowd that had now gathered around the piano in this room under the aquarium.

When I awoke from this strange dream, the Lord began to explain it to me.  It was a reminder once again of just how close His realm really is and how easily it can be accessed.  There was no barrier between this realm and the Heavenly realm.  The veil wasn’t just thin – it didn’t even exist!

There were only a few people who chose to be in this place.  To everyone else, what we were experiencing was considered impossible.  Taking care of the baby was a picture of leading the young ones higher, caring for them and introducing them to the Spirit realm.  These young ones accept it as quite normal.

The worship leader was meant to help us make the transition from our realm (in the lower room) up into the higher realm (in the water).  In this case, going from the natural realm here up into the Spirit realm.

Shortly after this dream, the Lord chose to underline it for me once again.  I was sitting in a large worship gathering when I noticed that one of the singers on the platform was wearing red sequin shoes that glittered under the lights.  I giggled and thought “Hmmm, Dorothy’s ruby slippers! (from the Wizard of Oz)  Now what would You like to say to me about that, Lord?”  And He quickly replied, “There’s no place like home!  And you know that your home is here in My realm with Me.”
.

The Mountain at the Edge of Eternity   7 comments

Out of the swirling water colors a white horse appeared and the smiling face of Jesus locked gazes with me.  When He reached for my hand and pulled me up onto the horse with Him, it was one fluid motion like color being swished onto a canvas.  We rode off into the heavens, landing gently on the Sea of Glass in the Throne Room.

There was a host of saints and angels there and immediately all the attention was on Him.  He dismounted, nodded His head gracefully to them with a slight bow and turned to help me down from the horse.  Then He took my hand and presented me to them.  Though I have been there many times, the beauty of Heaven and purity of those there is still a shock to the human system.  I felt like Cinderella at the ball with the Prince at my side.  He was affirming His relationship with me in front of them all.  It is easy to be overcome and terribly insecure in those moments except for all of Rick Joyner’s teaching experiences from Heavenly realms.  The Lord told him so many times that he was not to look at himself or compare himself to those who had been purified by the judgments, but to look at Him alone.

Jesus was regal and calm as always and seemed to be enjoying the moment.  Still, He saw that I was clinging to His hand.  Looking at me quietly, as if He was doing something just for me, He squeezed my hand and said,

“Come with Me. I want to show you something.”

Immediately we were on a high mountain, a familiar place I’ve come to call ‘the mountain at the edge of eternity’.   I love this place where anything can happen.  It’s full of possibility and destiny with that wild wind of the Spirit blowing our hair and garments.  Up on that mountain we started to walk in the green meadow and suddenly came upon a high hill.  I had never noticed it in the times I had been there before.

Jesus became serious and quietly said to me, “This is the hill of sacrifice.  Your sacrifice.  It’s all you have sacrificed for My sake and the Gospel over the years.”

I was stunned!  As soon as my vision cleared, for I was sobbing, I looked closer at the hill.  Now I could see it was made up of houses and land and gardens and things – many fine things that would go in a house, even beautiful cats! It was also made up of people … so many, many people.  There were friends and co-workers and people who we could network with to spread the Gospel.  There were also schools and training centers and churches, good churches full of good, faithful people who were mature in spirit and had single eyed devotion for Him alone.

As I gazed at this in awe, Jesus continued to speak to me.

“All the things you have sacrificed for Me have come up to Me and I have used them to build this memorial.  But more than just a memorial here in Heaven of your sacrifice, I have multiplied them a hundred fold and I have glorified each one of them and now I am bringing them back to you!  Some will stay here to be a blessing to you in your future life here.  But much of this will be coming back to you on earth now to bless you and help you fulfill your destiny there.”

I thought of all that I had sacrificed … houses and lands and things.  And of all the things that we could not do or be involved in because we were being called out of one place and into another.  All the years that I desperately clung to His promises and fought to stay free and not be tied down to anything, even things and places and people that I loved, to just try to stay in line for the ministry that I believed was coming, so that when the doors finally opened I’d be ready to go.  And I wept and remembered the joy when the doors finally opened.

Much of what I saw in that hill was people, a vast number of people.  I thought about the many times when the enemy stole opportunities from us to go and minister to groups of people.  Or times when we actually went but then things prevented people from coming or receiving what we had brought for them.  And there they all were in that hill.  There were not only the things I had sacrificed but also all that the enemy had stolen from me!  I thought about the scriptures that I had prayed so often:

And Jesus replied, “Let me assure you that no one has ever given up anything—homes, brothers, sisters, mother, father, children, or property—for love of me and to tell others the Good News, who won’t be given back, a hundred times over, homes, brothers, sisters, mothers, children, and land—with persecutions!   All these will be his here on earth, and in the world to come he shall have eternal life.”  Mark 10:29-30 Living Bible (TLB)

Have you grown weary from all the loss?  Take heart!  Nothing of value in your life is ever lost.  It goes on into eternity and is multiplied a hundred times to bless you and so many others.  Much of it will be showered back on you in this life and much more than you can imagine is waiting for you there in your Heavenly home with Him.

I am persuaded that He is able to keep that which I’ve committed to Him (to guard my deposit) against that day. 2 Tim. 1:12

Prophetic Intercession 5   1 comment

There is such a wide variety of creative intercession that the Lord allows us to enter when we ask Him to share His heart with us.  If we are open, He will show us things we’ve never imagined.  Such was the case with a prophetic experience I was taken into a few weeks ago.

 

Recently at our House of Prayer there was a wonderful presence of the Lord during the worship.  I found myself entering deeply into His presence and dancing with Him for a long time.  At last I heard the leader urging us to pray for the persecuted church in specific countries.  There are times when the presence of Jesus is so sweet that I really don’t want to change gears and come out of that to do something else.  So I made a conscious decision to stay in the Heavenly realms and pray ‘with Him’ from that place.

As we separated into smaller groups I saw, in the Spirit, a large group of people who were under attack for their faith. Jesus invited me to ‘stand in the gap’ with Him.  He offered me His hand, also taking the hand of another person and many of us formed a circle around these people, facing outward to protect them.

As He called us deeper into intercession, I maintained my position in the Heavens and was now in the Throne Room. The phrase ‘souls under the altar’ keep running through my mind and I knew He was drawing my attention to them. Rev.6:9-11 says these are the ones who have been martyred for their faith in God.  As if from far away I could faintly hear their cries.  Then my eyes were opened to see a vast host of people from every tribe and nation who had all been slain for their faith in God.

Suddenly, perhaps because we were now praying for the persecuted church in Nigeria, another group began to rise out of the first one.  These were Nigerians – tall, black skinned men in white flowing robes with their women in colorful dresses and head coverings, and their children … hundreds of children.  Tears were flowing like rivers from their eyes as they cried out from the depths of their passion, “How long Oh God, will you not judge and avenge our blood from them that dwell on the earth?” (Rev.6:10)

But then as I listened, I began to hear other cries as well and prayers that were mixed with our own prayers for their nation.  They were joining their voices with ours to pray for the persecuted church in Nigeria!  They were crying out for those who were suffering for their faith and for those who will be martyred!  They were praying for courage and strength for their brothers and sisters.  They were bringing hope to them! I was undone.

You’ve Climbed Higher Than You Realize   1 comment

God speaks to us any way He can get our attention!  We are wise to learn to listen to His still, quiet voice so that He doesn’t have to shout.  Sometimes people say to me, “Everything is not prophetic.”  And my reply is usually , “Most things are, if we can only hear or see them.”

Our family has made a cross country move this week.  Part of that journey took us through the mountains of Western Canada.  Amazing!  Spectacular!  I have loved these mountains for the last 7 years that I have lived among them.  So often I find myself thinking of the words that David penned about lifting my eyes to the hills where my help comes from – from the Lord who made Heaven and earth.  And I often hear the voice of the Lord as I gaze on His handiwork.  Being in the mountains on this trip was no exception.

Many mountain roads are on such a well planned grade that it looks as though you’re on a somewhat level road.  It’s difficult to see that you’re actually ascending.  The clues are that the RPMs are increasing, the speed is decreasing and it’s hard to hold your neck in an upright position since it’s being pulled backwards as if you’re on a roller coaster!  Another clue is that the outside temperature is dropping and there is snow on the ground.  All those waterfalls and rushing streams you passed half an hour ago at the lower levels are now frozen and glistening in the sun.  Suddenly you come to a place where you can look down and see how far you’ve climbed.  The view is spectacular and there are eagles flying overhead, calling you ever upward to the higher snow capped peaks still ahead.

Life in the Spirit is this way as well.  There are times when the incline is so gradual you don’t even realize you’ve been climbing.  But there are other times when you suddenly realize that you have just passed a particular test that you had failed many times before.  This time something was very different and you hear Him whisper “Well done” with a smile in His voice.  You have not only passed a test but graduated to a higher level.  The testing now will be more difficult but you will be able to handle it.  It doesn’t get any easier but you get stronger, so it seems easier and you begin to look forward to the challenges.

We cannot rightly judge ourselves or our fruit here in this realm.  It is only there in Heaven after the final term when we really find out what our marks were.  But if we live to love Him instead of just trying to make the grade, our lives will be so full of Him that the marks won’t matter so much to us here.  We live to love Him and spend so much time with Him that we simply absorb and reflect His glory.

Come Back Home   Leave a comment

The worship of a soft guitar floated through the air.  I closed my eyes and was suddenly taken away.

Standing on an open spiral staircase, I gazed around me.  I seemed to be in a huge century home with rich woods and sunlight streaming through every window.  From where I stood I could look up to the higher floors and down to the lower floors of this magnificent house.  The stairway was open to reveal people coming and going in the large rooms it passed through.  I could hear the sounds of laughter and singing. This house was so full of life and joy.

Suddenly a group of laughing, barefoot children came running down the stairs.  Some were sliding down the banister.  A couple of large dogs trotted among them, joining in their games.  As their happy laughter echoed back up the stairs I began to realize where I was.  This place was symbolic of my Father’s house.

This is how our Heavenly Father wants us to be in His house, carefree and joyful.  These children had no fear of falling off the high railing.  They were completely safe in Father’s house where nothing could hurt them.  They had no concern about whether there would be food for dinner or who was going to pay the mortgage on the house.  They had a simple basic trust in their Father that freed them from all worry and care.

Jesus said “unless you become as little children you shall not enter into the Kingdom of Heaven.” (Mt. 18:3)  Have you lost your peace somewhere?  Or have troubles overtaken you and caused your heart to fear?  Come back into  Father’s house.  Sit on His lap and let Him take you in His arms and tell you how much He loves you.

I know I have posted this music video before but it seems so appropriate that I am sharing it once again.  Be blessed as you enter back into the security of Father’s arms.

Heaven – The Cloud of Witnesses – part 4   2 comments

Recently I had another encounter with the Cloud of Witnesses. (Heb.11,12) This brought more understanding while (as always) bringing even more questions at the same time.  This is one of the Lord’s ways of nudging us along the path, gently luring us into the deeper things of God.  The more we discover of Him, the more we want to know.  The more we know Him, the more we love Him.

Jesus took my hand and immediately we were flying.  He carried me away to a place I’ve come to call ‘the great high mountain at the edge of eternity’. The wind of the Spirit is always moving in this place, blowing our hair and our garments.  It is a fresh wild wind filled with creative purpose and destiny.  At times one can look down from here and view eagles soaring. Gazing even further, far away below, there may be a glimpse of tiny forests and mountains and oceans.  At other times the view reveals another realm, quite unknown.  It seems to be a place where He can reveal whatever He chooses, whether past, present or future, in this realm or beyond.

This time there was a large crowd of people assembled that I immediately knew was the cloud of witnesses – my witnesses.  My Mother was there along with an old friend of hers that I remembered from decades ago.  I also saw Rev. and Mrs. Shumway, missionaries in Nigeria that the Lord brought back to the U.S. to pastor a small church in Oklahoma.  This was not even their home State but God brought them there to plant the seeds of Africa and missions in my little 6 year old heart.  Others watered and tended those seeds and they grew.

In this large crowd were some I recognized and some I did not, but all played a part in my life somehow.  There were writers whose works had mentored me and others whose prayers still affect me.  They were individually speaking to me but not with words.  This was spirit to spirit communication.  As I looked in their eyes I saw all they had endured and overcome in this life and I felt a great deal of shame at my laziness and discouragement.  I saw what my Mother had endured and overcome.  I always felt that one day in Heaven she would have a chest full of medals. But here, the medals and battle scars were internal and worn with grace and humility for all to see.

Looking at all of them now I had a very strong sense that they were depending on me!  The way I finish will add to their “perfection” there (that without us they would not be made perfect … Heb. 11:40).  I felt I had let all these people down and I was ashamed.

But they were not condescending.  They were encouraging me and also warning me.  “Get up, don’t stop, don’t be lazy… you must fight and win and overcome the things in your own life that need to be overcome.  Pick up the torch and finish what we began.”  Then each of them laid their hands on me to impart things to me.  As they filed past, Jesus was standing beside me with His hands on my head.  I was humbled and overwhelmed.

In an effort to understand this experience further, I found this in Rick Joyner’s book Torch and the Sword (p. 139).   Jesus led Rick into a great hall with a line of people on either side as they passed.  They were all dressed in various clothes from different eras.  The Lord said “These are the ones who helped to prepare you for your purpose.  You have received from their teachings or stories.  They are your witnesses.  You are representing them as you are Me, just as those you have a part in preparing will also represent you.  We are all one in the great purpose of the Father – the restoration of man and the earth to their purpose.  They are not complete without you.  Neither are you complete without them. This is also true of those who are to be called through you and the messengers in your time.”

And one more quote from Rick’s new book The Path, which I highly recommend. On page 60, Rick is being challenged by one from the cloud of witnesses who says to him, “I am but one of the ‘great company of witnesses’ who have been watching these times unfold and watching those of you who have been given the honor to live in them.  The righteous and prophets of old desired to see these days and they are now seeing them.  You live before an audience far greater than you can imagine.  If your eyes were open as they should be, you would see the great host of Heaven that is with you.  Right now you could not bear the gravity of these times, but you will grow in stature and vision until you can.”

May God strengthen us and give us wisdom to be the over-comers He has destined us to be in this age.

Heaven – The Cloud of Witnesses, part 3   Leave a comment

This entire company of people is relying upon us to become everything God called us to be so that they are made perfect.  That is a huge responsibility!

We have been studying the great cloud of witnesses spoken about in Hebrews chapters 11 and 12.  (See the previous 2 postings for more on this subject.)  This group is composed of all the over-comers who died in the faith from Adam to the present time.  They fought and ran the race but did not receive the promises.  They only saw and embraced them from afar. (Heb.11:13)  The last 2 verses of chapter 11 always puzzled me.  It says they “received not the promise: God having provided some better thing for us, that they without us should not be made perfect (complete).”   While I don’t pretend to fully understand this, recent prophetic experiences along with study and revelation have begun to shine some light on it.  Let’s look at some other scripture passages referring to this group.

Dan. 7:21,22  says that the horn of the adversary will wage war with the saints and overcome them … until … the Ancient of Days comes and renders a verdict in favor of the saints and they take possession of the Kingdom.  For thousands of years our enemy has been waging war against us.  Millions of our brothers and sisters in Christ have been martyred along with all their gifts and callings.  All that they would have done for the rest of their earthly lives was stolen from them and those acts of injustice by the enemy were recorded in the God’s books.

Rev. 8:3-5  ( the vision of John for a future time) talks about a great angel who has a golden censor in his hand.  Much incense was given to him so that he might add it to “all the prayers of all the saints.”   And the smoke of the incense, which is the prayers of the saints, went up before God.  Then the angel took the censor with the fire from the altar and threw it to the earth and there followed peals of thunder, flashes of lightening and an earthquake.  All the prayers of All the saints – this cloud of witnesses that prayed and prayed and did not see it in their time.   All their prayers have been captured in Heaven along with their tears and God will repay.  He will render a verdict in favor of the saints and they will take possession of the Kingdom forever. (Dan. 7:21,22)

This is the eternal perspective of the cloud of witnesses. The enemy will be judged and they will be rewarded.  But how do you and I fit into that picture now? How do we help to make them perfect or complete?

What God is in the process of doing in these days is amazing!   We are going to be the beneficiaries of things we haven’t even sown, of centuries of prayers of martyred saints and those who didn’t see the fulfillment.  God is pouring out all the gifts and anointings and commissionings that have ever been stolen from the Body of Christ back into this generation!   Jesus said in John 4, those who sow and those who reap rejoice together.  Millions of our brothers were sown like a seed and now that’s coming to harvest and we will reap the very things that the enemy stole from them.

Saul of Tarsus and the stoning of Stephen is a good example of this principle.  Stephen was a member of the early church who was full of faith and of the Holy Spirit and did great wonders and miracles among the people. (Acts 6 and 7)  He was falsely accused and stoned to death.  Saul, who was holding the coats of the people who were throwing the stones, was wrecking havoc in the church at that time, persecuting them and casting them into prison.  So as he was consenting to the death of Stephen, God picked him out for an object lesson.  It was as if the Lord  said to the enemy, “You took one of my best men so I’m going to take one of your best men – and turn him into the Apostle Paul.”   When Saul was converted he began to make 10 times more trouble for the enemy than Stephen had.  If satan had understood that principle he might have left Stephen alone.  Can you imagine Stephen, who had now joined that great cloud of witnesses, watching Paul do great exploits for the Kingdom of God and cheering him on?   Paul was now operating under the same anointing that Stephen carried and finishing what Stephen began to do when his life was cut short.  Now Stephen would be ‘made perfect or complete’ by what Paul was able to accomplish.  Stephen would reap the reward along with Paul.  “Those who sow and those who reap rejoice together.” (John 4:35-38)

Of course we also have our own callings to fulfill, not just to finish what someone else began.  But the point is that it’s pay-back time now and God is freely giving us all that we need to finish this great task. Ask and you shall receive! He can take the anointings of the great men and women of old and multiply them and then pour them out on a body of people so that when they achieve the fullness of that mandate the cloud of witnesses will share in the fruit of it.

Remember that they surround us and have a vested interest in what we do. (Heb. 12:1)  May we run this race and finish well, accomplishing all He put us here to do … for them, for our children and grand-children, but most of all for Him.

* Much of this weeks posting has come from the studies of Paul Keith Davis.  I am including the link to his archived webinars where you will find more on this topic and many others as well.  http://www.whitedoveministries.org/index.cfm?zone=Docs/WebinarArchive/WebinarArchivePage.htm&page=LiveStream

Heaven – The Cloud of Witnesses, part 2   Leave a comment

In the previous post we began to look at the cloud of witnesses that Paul describes in Hebrews 11 and 12.  Let’s take a closer look to see who they are, who they are not and what role they play in the times we are in and the times to come.

The first thing necessary to understand is this … it is God alone that we are to seek.  While He often chooses to minister to us in many different ways through people or angels, our focus is to be on Him and not them.  Just as we do not  pray to angels or worship them, the same applies to the cloud of witnesses.  1 Tim. 2:5 tells us that there is only one mediator between God and man and that is Christ Jesus.  He is the only one worthy of our worship and He is the only one to whom we pray.  But this does not mean that there is no interaction with them.  There are times when we are permitted to see angels, to receive the messages or the help they come to bring us.  The same is true of those in the cloud of witnesses.  They can be used as messengers as well.  These are not people you are apt to see on a regular basis even though Paul tells that we are ‘compassed about’ or ‘encircled’ by them.  But there are times when the Lord chooses to just let us have a glimpse of them as I did in the experience I related in the last post.  This was crucial to my understanding at the time and very precious to me.   It gave me courage to know I had made the right decision.

Who is this cloud of witnesses?  Paul describes them in the previous chapter.   In fact, if you read Hebrews chapter 11 and keep going into the first few verses of chapter 12 it will be self explanatory.  They are those who overcame and died before us.  They are from every generation from Adam up to the present.  Paul only listed and referred to those up until his own generation but the books were not closed and have been added to in every generation since.  They are not angels or other forms of Heavenly beings.  They are men and women, flesh and blood who were born and lived on the earth, became over-comers, died in the faith and have now gone to Heaven.

They have been given the right to watch us and see how we are running this race. (Heb. 12:1)  It’s like a relay race and it’s now our turn to run.  They are cheering us on toward the end but much more than that.  They are also messengers whom God will use on occasion.  The whole book, The Final Quest by Rick Joyner, is basically about experiences that Rick had with these people in Heaven.  They told him about their own failures and cautioned him to avoid the same traps.  Many of them explained that they should have had a higher rank in Heaven and why they failed to achieve it.  Their messages to him were crucial to help keep him on the right path.  And his writings of those experiences have been instrumental in helping us stay on the path as well.

There is a call going out now to “rid ourselves of everything that gets in the way and of the sin which holds onto us so tightly, and to run with determination the race that lies before us” so that we will not be ashamed at the end. (Heb. 12:1 Good News Bible)

This subject will be continued in the next posting.