Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Deeper Still Women's Conference 2009

DeeperStill Oklahoma City from Rich Kalonick on Vimeo.

I have recorded my notes below from the Deeper Still Conference. This conference had a huge impact on the ladies who attended. As for me, what I experienced at the conference was nothing short of a personal close encounter with God.
Session Three
Spiritual Discernment - Beth Moore
Key Scriptures - John 14:15-26; I Cor. 2:6-16
Beth began by sharing the fact that she had recently met a woman who was a holocaust survivor who had a tremendous testimony and had even written a book about her experience. Beth befriended her and even used her as an illustration many times in her messages. The lady wanted Beth to baptize her but being a Baptist, Beth would not agree but did agree to go down in the baptismal waters with the woman. Later Beth discovered that the woman's story was all a hoax! She had made up the whole thing! When they learned of the truth, one of her staff commented "We've been punked!!!" which illicited roaring laughter from the audience. So Beth posed the question to us "Have you ever been punked?" and "How do you know when you have been lied to?" She asked "When was the last time you believed something you shouldn't have or accepted something as the truth that was not?"
She went on to state the fact that spiritual discernment can save you from bad relationships and the importance of keeping our friendships free from entanglement. She said we need to learn to "go with our spiritual gut" and provided 4 questions to ask yourself so you can know when to go with your spiritual gut. If you can truthfully answer "no" to each of these questions, then you need to say "yes" to what your spiritual gut is telling you. II Timothy 3:1-5
1. Am I a critical or suspicious person by nature? Do I have trust issues anyway? Can I trust what I am sensing?
2. Am I jealous or do I feel threatened? A person who is jealous finds something wrong with a person right off the bat.
3. Do I have anything selfish to gain from this? from being right? from the outcome? People with the gift of discernment can be the most critical people ever. They need to be right about someone else's wrong.
4. Are my emotions clouding my discernment? We get emotionally entangled and we can't see truth from a lie. God is not calling us to love blindly.
Beth said, speaking to women, that we get emotionally entangled in relationships with women and men. She said "some of you have been best friends with someone for 15 years and you don't even like this person!" Then she made a very bold statement when she said that "someone sitting in this room is in a romantic relationship where someone is lying to you." She went on to state that we would rather be lied to than to be alone and that we are too busy to stop and listen to God. II Timothy 3:13
Next Beth shared 4 steps to take if we discern something is not what it seems.
1. Run - II Tim. 3:5 - Have nothing to do with them. Nothing is more dangerous than someone who has some form of godliness but no power. We were made for relationship and are meant to be connected to a local body of believers. She mentioned that she doesn't like "hyper-spiritual" people who don't go to church. She went on to say that in any relationship that takes on strong sexual overtones, besides your spouse, RUN.
2. Take a step back. Watch over your heart with all diligence.
3. Ask questions. Possibly confront the person, but don't do it over the phone or by email or text. Look them in the eye. Make sure they know you are on to them. Love them, but speak the truth.
4. Learn to love with your eyes wide open. The Holy Spirit may be saying "Get back, get back, get back!" We must learn to listen to our spiritual gut. You may not be able to explain it, you just may have to accept it. Humbly accept when God is telling you to retreat.
Priscilla Shirer
Session Two -
Key Scripture - Ephesians 3:20-21
"Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. "
1. The Timing - Now is the time to consider the greatness of God. Now is the time to connect God's ability with your immpossibility. Paul's "now" was less than he would like for it to be. He was in prison. This was a "prison doxology". He worshipped God in the midst of an impossible situation.
2. The Turning - We become discouraged and we stop praying. We need to shift our attention to God. In Numbers 13, there were 12 spies that went into the promised land, but only 2 spies were willing to see God through the difficulties.
3. The Truth - God is able to do it! He does not change. The original word here is "dunamis" where we get our word "dynomite". God has dynamite power. Dynamite changes the structure of things. Power is not something that God has but is who he is! God is able to do FOR you. The disciples walked and talked with Jesus but yet still did not trust him.
4. The Transcendency - God does way beyond what we can imagine. "Hyper" is a super-superlative word and makes another word like a word on steriods. Paul says "hyper" twice - meaning "beyond beyond". Here Priscilla gave the illustration of a woman who was hoping just to get a card from her husband on her birthday. She was not expecting much, and was pleased that he gave a card and an umbrella. Then he tells her that she is going to need the umbrella because he hears it rains alot in Paris!!! He went "beyond beyond" what she was expecting. That is how God is with us. He goes "beyond beyond" all that we could ask or even think.
Here Priscilla provided another illustration of how we should not limit God to only what our mind can concieve. She gave an example of some boxes and had 2 women come up and hold the boxes in front of them. She said that there are things that we tend to put in our boxes such as: what our denomination has taught us, what our parents believe about God, the testimonies of others, and our past experiences. Then we put the lid on the box. We assume that anything outside the box is not of God. But God wants us to allow him to build on our box. He has so much more in store for us that goes "beyond beyond" our imagination.
5. The Totality - This means all. What concerns me, concerns Him. Why do we waste time going to everyone else, when God is the only one who can do something about it?
6. The Turbo Power - Because of the Holy Spirit, the greatness of God lives inside of me. We have to yield ourselves to or cooperate with the Holy Spirit in order to see God's turbo power at work in our lives. The power is available but is not being used.
7. Our Tribute - To him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus, forever!
I went to this conference seeking some answers to another issue I was struggling with in my life. I initially thought that God failed to provide the answer but instead directed my attention to another area that He felt needed some intense work. After reviewing my notes from all 3 speakers (Kay Arthur, Priscilla Shirer, and Beth Moore), I now understand that woven throughout the conference He was trying to remind me of some very important Biblical truths for my life. Here is what I discovered:
1. I need to listen to Jesus and His word.
2. I need to pay more careful attention to what I have heard so that I do not drift away. Hebrews 2:1
3. I need to fear the face of God and not the face of man. (God's face represents his favor.)
4. I need to shift my attention to God and consider His greatness and power.
5. I need to let him build on my box and recognize that he wants to do "beyond beyond" all that I can imagine.
6. I need to learn to listen to my "spiritual gut" and not let emotions cloud my judgement.
7. I need to learn to love with my eyes wide open.

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