One of the themes for 2013 that resonates in my heart is that we will see increasing darkness and increasing light at the same time. At some level that’s always been true, but it’s easy to see our social and political landscape darken in America while the Kingdom gets brighter and brighter. The key to blessing any nation or individual is putting the Kingdom first. While there are dark clouds over our nation and over parts of the world, the son is still shining brightly and the Kingdom is still expanding on schedule. Our job is to see the light and be the light. In reality, darkness always flees from the light. We just flip the switch and it’s gone. Amazing! Regardless of the darkness or its thickness, we have the light that will reverse its gloom.

See, darkness covers the earth and thick darkness is over the peoples, but the Lord rises upon you and his glory appears over you. Isa 60:2 NIV

We do have protection from the attacks that come against entire nations – just as Israel avoided the 10 plagues in Egypt. But our mentality in the Kingdom is not just survival for a remnant. We are the leaven that causes the bread to rise. We are here to reverse the darkness and to switch on the light of truth that sets the captive free. You can say that Jesus is the Light of the world and be correct, but He is saying that you are the light and the leaven and the salt. Let’s agree with Him!

“What shall I compare the kingdom of God to?  It is like yeast that a woman took and mixed into a large amount of flour until it worked all through the dough.” Luke 13:20-21 NIV

You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men. You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Matt 5:13-15NIV

I think this will be a trying season; 2012 was trying enough! In this season I believe that God is asking us to “arise” above the battle and “shine” with His glory. It’s a great hour and a great privilege to live in these days of turmoil and opportunity. It will certainly try the souls of men, but it will also be the season of great triumphs for Kings who “get it.” So what does that look like? What are the attitudes and actions of the “light of the world”? People with the “light” have the trademark of “life.” Kings are alive with vision and passion through the desires of their own hearts. We are connecting the dots between our passion, our vocation, and our Kingdom purpose. Work and ministry are becoming the same thing!

In him was life, and that life was the light of men. John 1:4 NIV

Courage in the face of cowardice – Courage in the face of real adversity is the essence of warfare. We have to believe that the Christ in us will not only survive but prosper and minister to others. We not only conquer but we are more than conquerors. What exactly is “more than conquering,” anyway? In the end, I think it’s really a choice of focusing on the evil and degeneration, or putting our focus on the progress and the glory. Both exist at the same time.

For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. 2 Tim 1:7 NKJV

Perseverance in the face of passivity – There really is a spirit of resignation in the land. We have to break its power with persistence… in believing God, seeking Him in prayer, and believing for His power. We simply have to maintain all that same diligence, doggedness and determination until the Lord adds a miraculous ingredient and pushes us over the top into our dream. Our job in this hour is to do the right thing with the right level of expectation, and to keep our nose pointed toward the dream. It’s not easy, but it is necessary in terms of faith. Our dream is what gives us enthusiasm for life and work.

As you know, we consider blessed those who have persevered. You have heard of Job’s perseverance and have seen what the Lord finally brought about. The Lord is full of compassion and mercy. James 5:11 NIV

Prospering in the face of poverty – Poverty is a tool that the enemy uses to cause people to trade their freedom to dream for survival and security. Poverty in the hand of tyranny has historically been a means of keeping the populace compliant… it’s not an accident when economies fail. The natural direction of free people is always toward a very healthy version of prosperity. It’s true politically and Biblically. Don’t ever allow the “season” to cause you to lose your anointing to “produce wealth.” In the Kingdom, wealth has the purpose of ministry and it is scripturally coupled with wisdom. Kingdom purpose is the leverage that gives our hearts permission to use wealth as a tool. Generosity is deeply embedded in the heart of God’s nature and the character of His people. So is abundance.

Of what use is money in the hand of a fool, since he has no desire to get wisdom? Prov 17:16 NIV

The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life, and he who wins souls is wise. 31 If the righteous receive their due on earth… Prov 11:30-31 NIV

Creativity in the face of compliance – Darkness is a place of confinement and conformity. Light is a place of liberty, inspiration and innovation. We carry an anointing to speak things into existence, to bring things that exist in heaven to earth, to call things that are not as though they are. Give yourself permission to find the breakthrough of a new way, a new idea or a new network. It’s very prophetic and very practical and it’s very good for business. God is giving us the keys to the car… it’s fun!

I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.”  20 Then he warned his disciples not to tell anyone that he was the Christ. Matt 16:19-20 NIV

Taking initiative in the face of compliance – Darkness and chaos pull the courage out of a society and make the hearts of men melt. At the very same time there is an anointing on the righteous to be bold as a lion. It’s the heart of Jesus. You were designed to offer some great thing in the Kingdom, some mighty acts in the warfare. Stand tall and offer them with rejoicing. Our enemy is all bark and no bite. He roars like a lion, but the real lion resides in our hearts. We possess the boldness of the lion of Judah.

Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. 9 Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings. 1 Peter 5:8-9 NIV

The wicked man flees though no one pursues, but the righteous are as bold as a lion. Prov 28:1

God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. 2 Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, 3 though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging. Ps 46:1-3  NIV

Good will come to him who is generous and lends freely, who conducts his affairs with justice. 6 Surely he will never be shaken; a righteous man will be remembered forever.  7 He will have no fear of bad news; his heart is steadfast, trusting in the Lord. Ps 112:5-7 NIV

“Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord rises upon you. 2 See, darkness covers the earth and thick darkness is over the peoples, but the Lord rises upon you and his glory appears over you. 3 Nations will come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your dawn. Isa 60:1-3 NIV

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