More darkness is coming

Esther's Petition

SoldiersFieryLast night before going to sleep, I had been praying for specific people that came to mind, pretty much as usual. After the last one, I asked the Lord to please speak to me. I had been “doing all the talking,” and even though I knew he had wanted me to pray for those people, now I wanted to listen.

More darkness is coming, he said.

Oh, Lord, I said, again? We’ve had a lot of darkness lately, haven’t we? And there’s a global revival going on, isn’t there?

Yes, but more darkness is coming. More trouble, anxiety, depression, worry, anger, fear, money problems, health problems, family conflicts, community disagreements, arguments escalating into fights, warfare between peoples, between nations. All of it is escalating.

Where there have been floods and fires, hurricanes, tornadoes and super storms, there will be drought. Famine will be accompanied by a lack of resources, and…

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He’s taking the blinders off

April 12, 2021

We’re in a time of spiritual pause, the Lord said to me last night. He is turning his “ship of state,” the body of Christ, to re-focus their attention.

I had been feeling a bit off spiritually, mentally, emotionally, during the day. It was sort of like waiting for the other shoe to fall. I’m sure you’re familiar with that icky feeling. I’ve felt it several times in recent years. It’s always significant, I’m sure, but just what the significance is hasn’t always appeared. And so as I prayed last night, I asked him “What’s going on, Lord?”

And that’s what he said: A spiritual pause; a re-focusing.

I imagined a huge ship. The captain can’t just jerk the steering wheel to change direction, it takes a while for a ship of that size to make a turn. It moves slowly, slowly, bit by bit until the change is complete.

He is mobilizing his spiritual army and changing directions of the entire army, the Lord told me. It will take a little time. How much time? I asked, but he didn’t say.

He went on. The body of Christians worldwide have been acting like race horses with blinders on. Running around and around, horses wear blinders to block out distractions from their main focus — getting ahead. And so it has been with the human race, he said, even many if not most Christians.

My inner vision switched from the horse racetrack to the “rat race…”

What has been our focus? I asked myself. The main focus of myself, my family and friends, other people I’ve known in and out of church over my lifetime? I gave that some thought.

It wasn’t complicated. Here in America, we’ve been so focused on getting through school and college, getting a job or career, we’ve put blinders on ourselves out of necessity. We needed to avoid being distracted by less essential things, hindrances to a successful life.

Many of us focused next on getting married, having a family and raising kids. Buying a house, then a better house. Dealing with everyday stress with hobbies or vacations. Community volunteering for good causes. Trying to save for a “rainy day” or retirement. Taking care of any health problems that arise in ourselves or the family. Those things were important, weren’t they?

And of course unless we ourselves were called to a ministry of some sort, a Christian’s life meant going to church, supporting ministries and missions, praying and studying the Bible as much as possible. In our spare time we kept up some with current events, especially those that affected our own. There’s nothing evil in any of that, is there? I was thinking.

No, the Lord said, but I’m taking the blinders off now. I’m refocusing everyone’s attention. Directions are changing.

My people will see things they don’t see now. They will see what happens in the spirit world as well as the natural world. They will discern, begin to sense and feel the warfare going on around them.

Distractions? Oh, there will be a lot of distractions.

They’ll notice people they didn’t notice before. The man hurriedly walking down the street. Tired clerks in the store. Shoppers without smiles. Neighbors you see but have never met, co-workers you don’t really know, church members whose faces you recall but names you don’t. People in stores. Gas stations. Doctor’s offices. Hospitals. Workplaces. Needy people under attack everywhere you look, worried, anxious, sad, angry or depressed. Some are desperate. Disconsolate. There’s no more time for complacency in the body of Christ.

Along with distractions comes discomfort, he said. Unease and dissatisfaction. This war may have started without their notice, but they will notice it now. There really is a war, there really is an enemy, and the enemy really is out to kill everyone he can — believers and non-believers alike. But while the warfare is escalating, the turning is accelerating. A change in direction is coming: the army is mobilizing.

I was concerned about what I was supposed to do with what I was hearing. Why are you telling me all this? I asked.

Well, you’re not the only one, he said. As he spoke I could almost see a small smile on his face. Listen. Discern. Arm. Pray and intercede. Decree, declare and command.

Watch and warn. And so I am.

Warrior in Chief

This is going to be long. Hope you will be patient as you read, and also pray as you read.

The other night as I prayed, I asked again, “Who are you, Lord?” He replied, “Chief Warrior. Lead Warrior.” Oh my.

A lengthy conversation ensued with images and descriptions of what those two terms mean. The next morning I did some online study on what those functions look like in the natural world. All of that brought on a great deal more prayer about these functions in the spiritual world, and the conflict going on in the heavenlies today. I began to realize that God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit are involved in spiritual warfare a great deal, more than I usually considered.

Leading the army of Israel, Joshua met a man one day who described himself as captain of Jehovah’s army. Joshua asked him, Whose side are you on, ours or theirs? It soon became obvious that this was no ordinary meeting, not an ordinary man or even an ordinary angel – if there is such a thing. It was Jehovah God himself.

“And he said, Nay; but as captain of the host of the LORD am I now come. And Joshua fell on his face to the earth, and did worship, and said unto him, What saith my lord unto his servant? And the captain of the LORD’S host said unto Joshua, Loose thy shoe from off thy foot; for the place whereon thou standest [is] holy. And Joshua did so.” (Joshua 5:14-15 KJV)

Thinking about these things, I asked myself (and the Lord) another question. Is there a difference between Chief Warrior and Lead Warrior? Yes, there is, and God is both.

The Chief Warrior is in overall control of all military branches. This work includes:

— Supporting the overall mission of national security and defense
— Information gathering
— Intelligence receiving
— Decision making
— Strategic planning
— Appointing and delegating authority
— Providing funding, people and materiel to carry out plans
— Giving orders

The Lead Warrior carries out those orders, leading and fighting alongside other warriors.

In America, “The president of the United States is the commander-in-chief of all United States Armed Forces as well as all federalized United States Militia. In this capacity, the president exercises supreme operational command and control over all military personnel and militia members, and has plenary power to launch, direct and supervise military operations, order or authorize the deployment of troops, unilaterally launch nuclear weapons, and form military policy with the Department of Defense and Homeland Security. However, the constitutional ability to declare war is vested only in Congress.” (From https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Powers_of_the_president_of_the_United_States)

One notable American Chief Warrior was President Dwight D. Eisenhower. While he had extensive military experience, he never fought in combat. A notable American Lead Warrior was Douglas MacArthur, who fought in combat but was never President.

Several American Presidents did serve in both functions but not simultaneously, including George Washington and Theodore Roosevelt. None served in both capacities at the same time.

However, King Albert I of Belgium did. “King Albert I of Belgium (during WWI) was one of the last Kings to take the risk of joining his men in battle. When Belgium entered the war, King Albert I took personal command of the Belgian army… With him in command the Belgian troops were able to hold off Germany long enough for Britain and France to prepare for their own clash with the Germans. He never stopped fighting with his men… It was said that whenever he was on the front lines the Germans refused to fire on him out of respect for him being the highest ranked commander in harm’s way… At the end of the war, King Albert I led the Army Group Flanders and liberated Belgium. Once Belgium was free King Albert and his family returned to Brussels to a hero’s welcome.” (From https://historycollection.com/7-royal-escort-kings-led-armies-battle/)

I firmly believe that God himself is involved in spiritual warfare a great deal these days, as Chief Warrior AND Lead Warrior. Who do you suppose is winning this global battle?

Who is the “Fat Lady”?

This was written to answer a question from a fellow blogger last week… I thought others might like to read it too.

The Lord has given me several words lately about what is happening in America.

  • If a man could do it, a man could get glory, and the Lord will not share His glory.
  • Having done ALL, stand. Having DONE all, stand. Having done all, STAND.
  • Pray and keep on praying.
  • It’s not over until the “Fat Lady sings.”

As I pondered over who the “Fat Lady” is, I saw a mental image of Lady Freedom atop the US Capitol building in Washington, DC.

It’s a female warrior wearing an eagle helmet and holding a sheathed sword. That statue and its location are definitely worth meditating over.

A few years ago I began writing a blog titled Tapister. (https://tapister.wordpress.com)  A tapister is someone who creates tapestries. I believe the Master Tapister is at work in the world.

For several years one word has echoed in my mind — Watch.

Matthew 24, Mark 13, and Luke 21 repeat a command: Watch. Be on guard. Be alert. Keep watch. “What I say to you, I say to everyone: Watch!”

Watch for what? Earthquakes. Famines. Fires. Floods. Pestilence. Wars. Revolutions. Persecution of Christians. Betrayal by relatives. Fake Messiahs, working signs and miracles. Great distress. Fearful events. Sun darkened, moon not giving its light. Stars falling from the sky.

Tapister was created to help me and others watch for events and to watch for patterns. Also to tell others and above all, to pray.

Ezekiel 33 describes the duties of the watchman. It is a bit chilling to think how many believers today aren’t paying attention to what God’s watchmen are saying to them.

I haven’t kept Tapister updated much in recent months, there is just so much that bears watching in the world. But my own Watchman vigil certainly continues, it’s part of my personal habit pattern daily, and it’s why I post articles online.

Battle Array

“SHOCK”. That’s the subtitle of the post I wrote on January 1, 2021. https://estherspetition.wordpress.com/2021/01/01/2021/

“Wait and see. Keep praying,” the Lord told me, and so I have been. Since then:

  1. On the evening of January 1 as I was praying before going to sleep, the Lord gave me a mini-vision of an array of angels dressed in battle armor, thousands upon thousands of them in the heavens. Silent and still they stood arm to arm, facing the earth. Above and behind them a fierce spiritual battle was going on, but these warrior angels weren’t taking part in that battle; they were protecting the earth.
  2. On January 2, the Holy Spirit told me, “It’s coming down.” He showed me the warriors descending from the heavens onto the earth. My prayers became even more intense.
  3. On January 3, he said, “The battle is joined.”
  4. On January 4, he added, “We are now on a war footing.”

After that evening I haven’t heard anything specific from him during my night-time prayers. There’s just a deep sense of continued watchfulness.

Despite having received those words, like so many others I was terribly shocked at what happened at the U.S. Capitol on January 6. I realized that the Lord’s word to me about 2021 was coming to pass.

What will happen next? The Lord hasn’t told me. He may or may not. He just keeps saying, “Wait and see. Keep praying.” This is a spiritual battle and it’s not over.

If MY people, God said

I have spent more time than usual meditating and praying for the last couple of weeks, praying in tongues more than usual, and just listening to the voice of the Holy Spirit as to what or who to pray for. Or command, declare or decree about. It’s like listening or waiting for the “other shoe to fall,” if you know what I mean. I sense something unsettling going on in the spirit world.

Again I am receiving “positive” blog posts and “happy” emails from prophetic believers who predict another Great Awakening in the almost immediate future. I don’t sense that, however. The church has gone through that sort of prophesying before, in recent years. A lot of happy people were praising the Lord for those wonderful predictive words, looking expectantly for it to happen in America, any day now, any day now!

But it was more like wishful thinking, than actual prophecy. Situations in this country didn’t get better immediately, as so many expected — they got worse.

And I have a distinct feeling that the worst hasn’t happened yet. The enemy hears those exciting prophecies and makes his plans, causing chaos and havoc, stirring up hate and murder, destroying people and property, and the church at large didn’t seem to see it coming.

It’s past time for the militant church to take authority over the enemy, to truly discern the motives and behavior patterns of the enemy and take action. Some preachers are doing that, preaching and teaching how to do that, but there aren’t enough who are. Yet. That’s another one of my ongoing prayers.

“If MY people,” says that scripture – not those other people, not the pagan people, not the unbelieving people – God’s own people have to heed his words:

“If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” (2 Chronicles 7:14)

All that’s not to say there isn’t another Great Awakening ahead. I believe there is. Many hundreds of people are being born again in various nations of the world.

But here in America, the enemy is having too much success in creating disasters, inspiring and instigating more and more evil behavior in ordinary people – many who were law-abiding people just a few months ago, joining the lawless crowd already at work.

Flashpoint . Critical mass . Paradigm Shift . 2019

Late in 2018 I read many opinions and prophecies from around the world about the year ahead, from both secular and spiritual sources. The majority were optimistic and encouraging, although some did contain warnings about continued opposition from certain areas.

“Overall things will improve,” they said, “socially, politically, and spiritually, eventually. There may be a bit of conflict beforehand — but 2019 will be a good year, even a great year.”

That was thought-provoking to me, considering these messages came from all corners of the world, from varied spheres of interest. Spiritual leaders encouraged continued prayer. And so I prayed about it.

“What should we expect in 2019, really?” I asked the Lord. Here’s what he told me:

“Confusion and uncertainty will affect many in the body of Christ. ‘Am I believing right? they will ask themselves. Am I praying right? Did I vote right?’ “

“Why?” I asked him. His answer was brief: a short list with no further explanation:

Flashpoint — Critical Mass — Paradigm Shift

And so I did quite a bit of research to be sure I knew just what those things were:

  • Flashpoint: Chemically, the lowest temperature at which vapors of a volatile material will ignite, when given an ignition source. Gasoline and spark plugs in a car engine, for example.

In International Relations, a flashpoint is an area, or a dispute, that has a strong possibility of developing into a war. Political pundits today include the Middle East as a major flashpoint.

  • Critical mass: The smallest amount of fissile material needed for a sustained nuclear chain reaction, such as in a nuclear power plant. (A supercritical mass would result in an explosion, such as the atomic bomb in WWII.)

This concept is used in other contexts, such as group dynamics, where it refers to the smallest percentage of people in a group needed to trigger a change. On occasion it takes quite a long time, not to mention lengthy persuasive arguments, to acquire the needed percentage. Amending the U.S. Constitution to allow all citizens to vote, for example.

  • Paradigm shift: Paradigm refers to a pattern, model, or overall concept accepted by most people in an intellectual community, because of its effectiveness in explaining a complex process or set of data. A paradigm shift is a change caused when someone discovers data that disproves the pattern or concept.

One notable scientific paradigm was believing the Earth is the center of the universe, that the sun, moon and stars all revolve around the Earth. That changed with the discoveries of Copernicus and others (telescope) in the 17th Century.

“Justification is by grace alone” (Romans 1:17) was a major paradigm shift in the religious world, instigated by Martin Luther and resulting in the Protestant Reformation in the 16th Century.

Apparently those things would happen — or begin to happen — in 2019.  Any one of them would cause or contribute to confusion and uncertainty around the globe, including across the church world. “Optimistic and encouraging?” Not exactly.

After a while I prayed again and asked, “How should we respond to those things?”

“Having done all to stand, STAND,”  he said, emphasis on STAND. 2019 is going to be an interesting year, I thought to myself.

I was right.


(Originally published January 1, 2019; slightly edited to republish June 10, 2020.)

 

Do you still want America? I asked God…


In recent months I’ve been praying for the many intercessors across America, that as they pray, they will truly listen to God’s voice and speak (petition, command, declare, decree) what He wants spoken. In detail sometimes, in generalities sometimes. And particularly these days about our nation.

In a bedtime conversation with the Lord the other night, I asked the Lord “Do you even still want America?” I was wondering if and when he would get sick of the spiritual conditions in this nation as it is right now. He replied, “Define America.”

Then He began to show me images of the many, many aspects of this nation as it is right now – not just the continental United States but its islands, territories and protectorates, including embassies in foreign lands.

Physically (the multiple geographic regions coast to coast and around the globe) to begin with, then socially, politically, religiously, governmentally, and quite a few other aspects. Business. Education. Research. Medicine. Science. Entertainment. Communication. Infrastructure. Construction. Technology. Exploration. Military. Security.

That conversation and those images continued for some time, but the Lord never specifically answered my question except to finally say, “I created this nation.” I knew then that he didn’t intend to abandon it, no matter what was happening. I’m grateful for that.

“Show me how to pray, how to speak,” I asked him for the umpteenth time (it’s a frequent prayer of mine). It was an interesting few hours.

Words are Containers

“Handle them carefully, for words have more power than atom bombs.”

The following list began one recent evening as I was praying. I asked the Lord, “Would you please speak to me?”

I expected a conversation, perhaps a few sentences or so,  but He simply said, “Word.”

And then He began speaking this list, showing me mental images of what each one indicates. I put off writing it up for a few days, then finally went to the computer and began.

As I typed, word after word came to mind, even just now as I thought I was about through. Words are:

Containers      Explainers     Definers     Descriptors     Expressors
Impressors      Stressors     Reminders    Triggers     Tools    Equipment
Weapons     Armor     Creators    Destroyers     Healers   Deliverers
Revealers      Directors     Commanders     Preventers     Protectors
Comforters      Empowerers     Teachers     Trainers     Restrainers
Discipliners      Punishers     Confusers     Illustrators     Distributors
Distracters     Deceivers     Changers     Carriers     Manipulators
Stitchers     Connectors      Planters     Disguisers    Separators

You can probably come up with a few more.

Words are important. The way we use words is important. The unspoken words too, those non-verbal, physical expressions we use when speaking, are also important. Shrugs, frowns, smiles, leers, raised eyebrows, smirks, wrinkled noses, for instance, can add emotion, emphasize or negate what we are stating.

Why? Why are words so important?

Remember Genesis chapter 1? God created everything that exists and He used words to do it.

“And God commanded, Be, Light.” (Genesis 1:3, literal from Hebrew)

“Death and life are in the power of the tongue.” (Proverbs 18:21)

Words contain power, not just God’s words, even our own words. I think we need to be more thoughtful, more careful, the way we fling words around.

2020 Part 2

What else? I asked the Lord the other night. What else will 2020 be like?

“It will be a year of Surprises,” he said. “Can you define surprise?”

Hmm. I gave that some thought.
Unexpected, not anticipated, not predicted, not even imagined.
They can be things or events, I suppose. Life-changing, maybe. Something you didn’t or can’t prepare for in advance.

Surprises can be good, bad, or neutral; puzzling, thought-provoking or fascinating.
Perhaps joyous, exciting, gratifying and satisfying. Those would be good.

Or shocking, horrifying, grievous or worrisome. Repugnant. Not good.

Whatever they are, there will be a few in 2020.

We need to keep our spiritual eyes out.