February 2006

Paul Keith & Wanda Davis, & Shawn Bolz

Change is Imminent By Paul Keith Davis

Never has the need been greater for a clear prophetic word coming direct from God’s heart. The Lord told us prophetically that 2005 would be a year of transition. We have now determined that 2006 will be a year of change. Transition is defined as “the act of passing from one state or place into the next.” Change is “the result of an alteration or modification.” The transition of 2005 initiated a process while the change of 2006 will manifest the results of our responses to this process.

Genuine spiritual change only transpires with a visitation from God. The Great Reformation was launched with a clear prophetic word from the Lord’s heart. A fullness-of-time moment had occurred in God’s plan and the ministry of restoration was set in motion. That movement has been progressively accelerating to this present hour. Another crossroad has been met and great change is imminent.

With a fresh word from the Lord there is an equally important need for increase in our measure of discernment. History has proven that each major juncture in God’s time-line is met with a deluge of voices. However, the Lord promised that His sheep will know His voice. He said,

When he puts forth all his own, he goes ahead of them, and the sheep follow him because they know his voice. A stranger they simply will not follow, but will flee from him, because they do not know the voice of strangers — John 10:4-5

Nevertheless, when we discern His Voice there must be a positive response or we will be doomed to repeat the mistakes of the past. Dating all the way back to Israel’s exodus from Egypt, a consistent pattern has developed following each visitation of God’s Spirit. Bible and natural history affirms that without the spirit of revelation resident in us, we will miss the day of our visitation. (Deuteronomy 29:2-4)

Apprehending the Message

The Lord comes with miracles, signs and wonders to validate a message that is firmly rooted and grounded in the written word. God’s people are often captivated by the signs and wonders but only a remnant captures the message. This trend must be reversed in this hour. The early Church model stipulated,

they went out and preached everywhere, while the Lord worked with them, and confirmed the word by the signs that followed – Mark 16:20

The Holy Spirit worked with the early disciples with sign and wonders to confirm the message of God’s Kingdom. To us a measure of grace is being allotted to quicken our spirits for receptivity to that message. A supernatural hunger is provoking us to move beyond cold formal religiosity to pursue relationship with Him. To even possess this desire is God’s gift.

We desperately need the validation of His Spirit with miracles and signs but we cannot allow that to become the end in itself. It is only a means to the end—that is, union with the Lord.

Pursuit of Maturity

As someone once said, “change demands growth and growth warrants change.” A legitimate and experiential encounter with the Living Word will kindle a fruitful and needy change. The greatest change will be for the Bride of Christ to move from adolescence into maturity. That is what this juncture of church history will produce.

For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you have need again for someone to teach you the elementary principles of the oracles of God, and you have come to need milk and not solid food. For everyone who partakes {only} of milk is not accustomed to the word of righteousness, for he is an infant. But solid food is for the mature, who because of practice have their senses trained to discern good and evil— Hebrews 5:12-14

Many hearts have been prepared to encounter the Lord. Tremendous revelatory truth promised to us in God’s word is poised to be released in this exchange. The prophet Daniel was given panoramic visions of this time but was not permitted to relinquish the revelation. It was reserved for this specific moment in human history. That certainty alone ought to provoke us to rise above the spirit of this world to apprehend the divine destiny allotted for each of us individually.

The apostle Paul is another prophetic model for leadership to emulate today. His gospel came neither by the teaching of man nor by the reading of a book, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ. (Galatians 1:12) His message was an absolute standard that the Lord was able to validate with the authenticity of Heaven.

God’s Absolute

The level of revelation granted to Paul is about to be released to the Church to present the “plumbline” of God and establish a perfect standard. Our comprehension of God’s word will rocket to incredible heights when we eat the now “open book” of redemption that unveils the fullness of God’s plan. It has been reserved in God from the days of Daniel until today. The treasures of wisdom and knowledge hidden in Christ that will present the bride without spot or wrinkle will be delegated to her.

There is something woven into the spiritual DNA of God’s people today that propels us into this new place. It is “deep calling unto deep.” God will respond to our desperation with a release from His throne. It will be the Voice of the seven thunders promised in Revelations 10.

The mysteries of God’s Kingdom are prepared to be set in motion that will awaken and equip the Bride of Christ. That is our current purpose and our quest. Our greatest council to participate in this plan is to respond to the wooing of God’s Spirit. This mobilization will cause us to lay aside every weight and encumbrance that has entangled us in our past. Today if we hear His Voice we cannot harden our hearts to this fresh message.

For He is our God, and we are the people of His pasture and the sheep of His hand. Today, if you would hear His voice, Do not harden your hearts, as at Meribah, as in the day of Massah in the wilderness — Psalms 95:7-8

For a season the Lord has been restraining spiritual issues so that we can be prepared both spiritually and naturally. Likewise, our enemy has been attempting to escalate things before their time. This has been the contention that many have experienced over this season.

There is a first fruits harvest that is coming to maturity so that God’s plan can be set in motion. In the feasts of Israel, the first fruits came to a place of maturity early. They were gathered and dedicated to the Lord as an offering to assure God’s favor for the great harvest.

This symbolism portrays the current season. Like the spies of Israel, there will be pioneers and forerunners who cross over into God’s promise to apprehend its reality and introduce it to the body at large. They will experience Hebrews 6:5 and will have, “tasted the good word of God and the powers of the age to come.” Their walk with the Lord and powerful ministry will be an introduction to the latter-day anointing that will bring in the greatest harvest of souls ever witnessed.

Another Great Awakening

During the early 16th century, Martin Luther nailed his 95 theses to the church doors of Wittenberg, Germany. This act launched a spiritual transformation that changed the face of Christianity leading to the Great Awakening of the 18th century. Something equally as significant is prepared to transpire today.

The dealings of God being initiated in this day will produce another “great awakening.” However, this Heavenly strategy will quicken individuals to their destiny and the awareness of God’s provision for the harvest of the ages.

Like the first Great Awakening launched by Jonathan Edwards, kingdom principles will be set in motion to bring us to this place. Edwards recognized in his day that human history has been a progressive journey perpetually leading to the Person of Jesus. He also understood that the revivals of his day were only a foretaste of something greater to come.

His messages clearly defined God’s standards that outlined various intervals of revival and spiritual awakening that produced both times of promotion and seasons of hiding. We are now broaching an opportunity for great advancement. Our mind-set is shifting from a defensive posture to an offensive one.

In “The Works of Jonathan Edwards, Volume One Part IV,” Edwards concluded from his analysis of church history and God’s dealings with mankind, that “time after time, when religion seemed to be almost gone, then God granted a revival, and sent some angel, or raised up some eminent person, to be an instrument of their reformation.” We are overdue for such a visitation as that expressed by Edwards.

Riders of Justice By Shawn Bolz

While I was in the City of New Orleans with many Christian relief workers, I had a flash back vision. It was a vision that I have seen before when I was young. Jesus was on a white horse like in Revelations 19. He was riding up towards me and behind Him followed thousands and thousands of white horses with riders who were wearing white linen garments. One was a rider-less white horse that I knew was being offered to me. As they rode by I had to mount the horse in motion, and something in my spirit knew how to do it. I jumped on bareback and held on for a ride of my life.

As I rode I began to emulate Jesus. I began to identify with John’s description of Him in Revelation 19:11-16. The One who is righteous and loves justice, with eyes are blazing like fire with passion for those He loves was leading an army who were all on white horses. They began to carry the virtue of what John saw Jesus carry and what I was seeing Jesus carry now.

He turned around and looked at me and a sword was coming out of His mouth and He said “Come and be a rider of My army of lovers. Ride forth for My justice.”

A Generation Taking a Stand for Justice

It sounds like a really simple vision that is devotional in nature, but I knew that many people in the body of Christ at some point in their Christian journey have been marked by either a dream or a vision of horses. They have been riding them, seeing them run, seeing an army mounted on horses, etc. Maybe they even saw the riders of judgment.

In New Orleans, I had everyone who ever had a dream or a vision of this nature to come forward. I was surprised when many came up. Several of them had the vision years ago but it marked them. I felt I was to put out a call to those in whom God is awakening these revelatory experiences again and for the many who have never even seen them are about to see the horses of heaven.

Prevailing Justice

I had another vision of a generation of people who had a primary cry in their heart for justice to be administrated. They were crying out:

Psalm 7:6 “Awake my God, decree justice!”

I saw prophetic voices that were rising up, who had scales coming out of their mouths and the scales were balanced. With these scales they could judge rightly with a Spirit of Truth over situations. I believe they were coming out of the mouths of chosen people representing those who will establish justice in complicated situations through their words.

An example of this was a vision of a young black man who was looking at the civil rights issue in America. He was completely color blind. I believe this represented that he wasn’t favoring one race or another. As the Lord began to move this young man could straighten out the injustice of false favor where one race was being preferred over another. People understood the integrity that was represented in his discernment. His words would establish a right thinking and action from one race to another.

There is going to be a prevailing justice released on a generation of people who can not stand to live the same way again. God is setting up in the hearts of His Kingdom people a certain attitude that is provoking His own heart. That attitude is this: His people are not just crying out for a heavenly response, but their very lives have begun to demand a response from heaven. That is saying that we are living so far outside of the price Jesus paid for us on the cross that our lives are demanding the virtues of healing, destiny, love, and His Kingdom manifestation.

Discernment is the Beginning of Having Balanced Scales

I saw this generation of people who had scales in their mouth who had to go through a painful process of getting the scales balanced. I saw the Lord doing orthodontist work in their mouths so that he could plant the scales in properly. I believe many people are going through a cleansing in how they speak and think about others. One of the main imbalances that throw off discernment is exaggeration whether good or bad. It causes people to see things outside of truth and then justice sometimes is not administrated correctly for one side or the other. Another major imbalance throwing off the scales was carrying someone else’s offence. I believe this one is single handedly making many good leaders ineffective in their pursuit of justice.

The Lord is Exalted by His Justice

The last part of the vision showed all of humanity walking down the highway of life. Some were carrying heavy loads with them and some were all alone with nothing. Everyone had to stop off at a weigh station to be weighed. As those who were poor or poor in spirit were weighed, He began to weigh their poverty of spirit. If they weighed heavy He began to enact a plan to restore them in His justice. This became a demonstration to the world of people who were given recompense because their lives demanded it. Their lives had been measured and found wanting for justice and the Lord showed in one generation a generous picture of His nature of Justice: He served it to the whole world all at once. I believe this will happen in my lifetime over some key areas. One is poverty in the world, the trafficking of children, and racial injustice. I believe God is going to display it by taking portions of the earth and giving the church a kingdom reign for a season of time over certain issues so that the world can see the God of justice demonstrated.

I know the ultimate fulfillment of this is in the final days, but there is going to be a worldwide revival sparked by the issue of the Lord exalting Himself in His justice. (Psalm 28:17)

I believe also that the Lord is reawakening many who were called even from their first day of salvation to be riders of justice. May He revisit visions, dreams, and encounters you have had about this precious issue so that He can exalt Himself in justice!

Shawn Bolz Office@ @iburn.org

Fireside Chat with Bob Jones

This portion of our newsletter is the continuation of a prophetic word initiated last month. It is taken from an experience Bob had a few years ago pointing to this specific moment in our prophetic destiny. It highlights the past decade and the difficulties we have experienced but also reiterates God’s purpose for allowing them. Having the understanding that the Lord is grooming us for something significant transforms our mind-set and generates hope to displace hopelessness. Without this understanding we would indeed experience profound hopelessness and despair. A double portion restoration and return is our legacy.

The Seed of God- Part II By Paul Keith Davis

The cry of God’s heart is for righteous shepherds to be raised up to feed and oversee the sheep of His pasture. The Lord longs for shepherds who will love the sheep and take their stand between them and the enemy. The Lord is presently working on bringing forth His body to be joined to the Head, the Lord Jesus. The task of the good shepherds is to prepare the people for this destiny.

One of the primary functions of God’s leadership is to feed His body. This is essential now so that they may grow up and possess the gates of the enemy. It is the promise of God that His children will inherit the earth.

God’s justice is about to be released from heaven in a mighty and tangible way. Nevertheless, that realization will be a source of blessing for the righteous and judgment upon unrighteousness. That which remains will be our inheritance.

As the word stipulates, I have been young and now I am old, yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken or his descendants begging bread- Psalms 37:25

Therefore, we are now being called to a heightened place of intimacy and fellowship with God. Our covenant is built upon better promises than that of Moses. Even so, Moses was required to wear a veil upon his face because of the residue of God’s glory resting upon him. How much more should we experience His glory in the new covenant!

Our council is to cooperate with heaven and do only what we see the Father doing and say only what we hear Him saying. The Lord is opening our eyes and ears with the spirit of understanding so that our discernment is taken to greater levels to accomplish this purpose.

The righteous shepherds emerging today will be shepherds of love. It will not be in their heart to harm or abuse the sheep. Many of these leaders will have known failure and through their failure discovered love. They will have been healed of their brokenness but in the process, contrition will have become their standard.

The righteous shepherds will lead the sheep to calm waters so that the body of Christ can discover God in personal ways. Many of the shepherds will be emerging from obscure and isolated places. They will bring an anointing to calm troubled waters presently in the Church and will carry authority to speak into the hearts of people. They will address the spirits of gossip and slander that bring division to the body of Christ. They will still the troubled waters.

This group will respond to, “deep calling unto deep.” We are being prepared to travel in a way not yet known to the Church. Our call is to be prepared to carry mantles of power that will be unique to the harvest generation. These things will be called forth by the spirit of prophecy. According to Isaiah 48:6-7,

You have heard [these things foretold], now you see this fulfillment. And will you not bear witness to it? I show you specified new things from this time forth, even hidden things [kept in reserve] which you have not known. They are created now [called into being by the prophetic word], and not long ago; and before today you have never heard of them, lest you should say, Behold, I knew them! (Amplified version)

A fresh prophetic word is being delegated to the Church to articulate Heaven’s desire. Several years ago a drought existed in the southern portion of Texas. While there in a conference the Lord told us not to pray for rain but to declare it. The anointed prophetic word opened the heavens and an abundance of rain fell.

This is a token of what is to come; it is our agreement with heaven and the proclamation of His will. When a clear prophetic word has been imparted, it is our place to announce it through an atmosphere of His anointing. That is part of the bridal calling.

Those anointed with this spirit will begin to speak against sickness, sin and the spirit of poverty. This past season of grooming and refinement has been for this purpose. There has been a sifting of our soul and the establishment of contrition and humility in order to carry this level of power and authority. The spirit of understanding will bring illumination to this reality and mobilize God’s people for this great task.

Many Waters Cannot Quench Love

September 16, 2004 is a date that will live in the minds of Baldwin County residents for some time to come. That is the day hurricane Ivan came ashore directly over our county.

Our home is in Orange Beach which is a “sister” city to Gulf Shores. Both are situated along the beach road bordering the Gulf of Mexico.

It has now been 18 months and this region is still in a major recovery mode. Following the hurricane, an article appeared in the Washington Post that is both informative and prophetic. I’m not certain if the writer realized the significance of his article but many of us in this area recognize the spiritual application.

We are living in a season of extreme change and transformation. What our county is experiencing illustrates a spiritual reality. He concludes his article with a quote from the Song of Solomon with direct application to the spiritual destiny of this area. I thought you might enjoy this well-written article by Michael Grunwald and Manuel Roig-Franzia

From the Washington Post

GULF SHORES, Ala., Sept. 17 — The Tilt-a-Whirl was tilted, whirled and crushed into a hunk of tangled metal. The Ferris wheel was flattened, the kiddie rides were crumbled, and the Simple Simon arcade game was catapulted two blocks away. The entire Gulf Shores Amusement Park was a shambles Friday, littered with seats shaped like spaceships, key chains shaped like dolphins and other carnival detritus.

The park once was one of the most familiar landmarks in Gulf Shores, a tourist resort on the 32-mile strip of sugar-white barrier beaches known as Pleasure Island. Now it is one of the most vivid symbols of the destruction wrought by Hurricane Ivan, a killjoy of a storm that bulldozed seaside grills, motel swimming pools, kitschy souvenir shops, rickety wooden boardwalks and other mainstays of the nation’s beach-vacation culture. It tossed the beach itself all the way across West Beach Boulevard, dumping sand into restaurants, shops and parking lots.

With 130-mph winds and storm surges around 15 feet, Ivan tore apart condominium balconies, ice cream stands and motels as well as a massive concrete pier. Ivan has not relented in its deadly rampage into Appalachia, but the tourism infrastructure of Pleasure Island absorbed its most powerful punch.

The “E” in Souvenir City’s marquee was impaled on the fin of the giant shark in front of its entrance, and scads of the store’s T-shirts, flip-flops, sunglasses, seashells, rubber balls and coffee mugs were scattered around its parking lot. Lulu’s, a popular restaurant owned by singer Jimmy Buffett’s sister, lost its turquoise roof, and the Original Oyster House, another local hot spot, was inundated by about five feet of water. A water park called Waterville was almost completely underwater. And at the multicolored shop next door to the Gulf Shores Amusement Park, a banner promised “ENTIRE STORE 60% OFF,” which was almost literally true after Ivan’s floodwaters ripped through the lower floor.

But the most striking image of Ivan’s assault on Gulf Shores was the dollar-a-ride amusement park itself, almost completely dismantled by ferocious gusts. The unseen guts of the attraction — gears, pipes, insulation — were flung together with toilets, mangled concession stands and a Hoop Shot free-throw arcade game in a waterlogged pile of debris. Someone apparently tried to secure one of the rides with pink gardening tape. A size 7 flip-flop, with the word “Dizzy” on the heel, dangled from a tree that stopped the two-block hurricane flight of one of the amusement park’s thrill-ride seats — a “double rider,” which required a red ticket, according to one of the few remaining signs. It is hard to imagine anyone riding it ever again.

“Oh, what a shame. That amusement park was a fixture of Gulf Shores,” said Bebe Gauntt, a manager at the local tourism bureau. “The kids just loved it. It was one of the things that gave us our small-town feel.”

That small-town feel has been changing in recent years, with luxury high-rises rapidly replacing flimsy motels and well-heeled jet-setters gradually crowding out middle-class tin-can tourists. “Twenty-five years ago, I could drive up and down the beach and go fishing. There was nothing but those big, pretty dunes,” said Sonny Hawkins, a former Baldwin County commissioner who was helping to clear debris Friday. “Now you can’t even see the beach with all the condos. It makes you want to cry.” In fact, rumors had been swirling long before Ivan that the amusement park property was about to be converted into condos as well. “Well, it was in a prime location,” Gauntt of the tourism bureau said. “It might not have lasted for long.” Change is inevitable for any community; in this case, Ivan might have accelerated it.

Still, Gauntt believes that Gulf Shores can maintain its culture as the kind of place where kids go to amusement parks and eat cotton candy, even if the amusement parks disappear. “We’ll never lose that,” she said. “That’s who we are.”

She might take comfort from a storm-soaked Bible that somehow landed in the rubble of the park, flipped open to a section from the Song of Solomon: “Many waters cannot quench love. Nor can the floods drown it.”