Mary’s Prophetic Journey - Part I
Luke 1:38 Then Mary said, ‘Behold the maidservant of the Lord! Let it be to me according to your word.’ And the angel departed from her.
Our prophetic history with God is a never-ending cyclical journey. We each have seasons with prophetic revelation, spiritual warfare leading to the wilderness, the ho-hum of ordinary life and times of ministry, which take you to the cross. These sequences into periods of resurrection make us carriers of the glory as we pass through persecution and the firings of life. Then, the never-ending cycle begins again with seasons of renewal and visitations.
One incredible biblical example of this is Mary, the mother of Jesus. So often we think of her as a 15-year old riding off on a donkey to facilitate the Christmas story, but let’s look at the tapestry of her whole life. Just like us, she was on a prophetic journey, cloaked in mysteries that unraveled gradually.
Mary’s radical visitation with Gabriel’s stunning announcement - Elizabeth’s Magnificent - involved angelic choirs serenading country shepherds, the Magi’s trek from the East bringing gifts, Anna and Simeon’s testimony at the temple, radical impartation, and constant divine orchestrations. It all died with His shattered body at Golgotha, only to be resurrected. So let’s begin this wonderful journey.
A radical visitation came one night when the angel Gabriel came to Mary. “Me, can you imagine?” Mary thought! She was young and simple … a Jewish girl living in poverty in the little town of Nazareth. What did she have to offer anyone, especially Almighty God?
His voice filled her whole room and she was terrified. ‘Greetings, you who are highly favored among women. The Lord is with you.’ He told her not to fear and that she would give birth to the Messiah. Mary cried out, ‘Yes, Lord let it be unto me according to Your word.’
The Holy Spirit overshadowed Mary. A radical impartation of the fiery seed of the Father pierced her womb and impregnated her with Jesus. This ushered in the Messianic Age and it was the fulfillment of all the Old Testament prophecies and the Law.
Mary possessed a heart of devotion and child-like faith. She was a sovereign vessel chosen to be the mother of Jesus, yet the Bible never indicates that she moved in miracles. She simply said, “Yes, Lord, let it be done unto me, according to Your word” and it changed her life forever. That’s why we can all be like Mary. Her life was a tapestry of prayer, purity and humility.
Do you want a visitation? Do you cry out, “Lord, I want to be like Mary! I want to be radically overshadowed by the Holy Spirit to bring revival. Lord, I want to be your intercessor, impregnated with your purposes?”
There is a price behind the anointing. There is a stigma. Birthing the things of the Spirit is messy and revival is controversial. Are you willing to be a manger and birth Jesus, or are you one who says, “There’s no room in the inn”?
Prayer: Lord, I, like Mary, want to be radically overshadowed by Your Spirit and impregnated with Your purposes. No matter what the cost, no matter what others think, I say to You, “Let it be done unto me!”
Mary’s Prophetic Journey -
Heavy Spiritual Warfare - Part 2
Matthew 2:16 - "Then Herod, when he saw that he was deceived by the wise men, was exceedingly angry; and he sent forth and put to death all the male children who were in Bethlehem and in all its districts, from two years old and under."
“In the middle of the night Joseph shook me violently. He was terrified, crying, ranting about Herod wanting Jesus dead and leaving town -- now. He grabbed Jesus and was out the door before I could even understand. We left everything behind that night, no explanations, no good-byes. Fifteen minutes and life as we knew it was over. I looked back one last time as I left my hometown. I didn’t know we would be in hiding for years,” Mary thought.
When Jesus was born, the Kingdom of God invaded Earth
Why did King Herod feel so threatened by an unassuming little baby wrapped in swaddling clothes tucked in a manger in Bethlehem? We must realize is that this is much more than merely Herod persecuting the Jews in the natural. Rather, when Jesus was born, the Kingdom of God invaded earth. Therefore, this was a confrontation with a supernatural clashing of two governmental powers. The kingdom of God broke forth on earth, and Satan knew it. So, in rage, the demonic retaliated in order to kill Jesus before He could fulfill the will of the Father. Suddenly, when the appointed time came, Satan responded with vengeance.
Satan goes after the move of God in its infancy, when it’s most vulnerable. Jesus’ birth necessitated an escape from Herod’s slaughtering army. They were given divine strategies and were hidden in the enemy’s camp, Egypt.
The greater your call and destiny is, the greater the spiritual warfare
When you have had radical encounters, profound prophetic words, and visitations from the Lord, the enemy then wants to snatch the seeds of your destiny before this word can be planted and established. The greater your call and destiny is, the greater the spiritual warfare.
So expect an onslaught of attack because the enemy wants to abort your prophetic promises. But when Jesus moves radically in your life, it will birth revival and renewal. This, in turn, always brings shaking in every arena of our lives – relationships, jobs, ministries, and anything that is dear to your heart. When the stirrings of revival are being birthed, it rouses the demonic realm to challenge the status quo. Often those closest to us will be the first to cast stones, and the enemy uses unexpected people to shoot arrows into our hearts.
Heavy battle is a good sign you are a threat!
But be encouraged beloved, the enemy doesn’t waste his time. If you don’t make Satan nervous by your radical abandonment to Jesus, perhaps you should re-evaluate your choices. So if you are in a heavy battle, be encouraged the enemy must really consider you a threat!
Prayer: Lord, give me wisdom and strategies to escape the Herod’s of my life and wait upon the fulfillment of the prophetic promises of my life. Help me to follow Your lead, and teach me to only fight the battles You have called me to. I am willing to find refuge, even in the wilderness. Help me to know when to withdraw and when to fight. I want to be so hidden in You that I am invisible to the enemy.
Mary’s Prophetic Journey Part 3
The Wilderness - May 31, 2005
Hosea 2:14 - Therefore, I am now going to allure her; I will lead her into the wilderness and speak tenderly to her.
Luke 2:19 - But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.
“Why Egypt? Why pagan Egypt? It’s the land of bondage for our people, Mary ponders. Moses led us out. Will we die there like our forefathers? We live as refugees. I keep wondering why God didn’t just remove Herod. Why did we have to flee into the night? Those back home must be grieving terribly. They don’t even know where we are or what happened to us. I wish they could see Jesus grow up. I wish He could scamper on His grandmother’s lap and she could wrap her arms around Him and rock Him to sleep. He was her delight.”
Do You Keep Wondering When Your Prophetic Words Will Come True?
You’ve had incredible dramatic encounters with God and you’ve had multiple prophetic words on tape and transcribed them into notebooks. You’re sure that any minute your prophetic promises will happen. Remember the words that someday you’d have a platform ministry and move in miraculous healing?
Mary also received prophetic words: Her Son would be the king of the Jews. So why were they banishing and suffering in an uncomfortable and foreign land? Mary didn’t realize that the prophetic timetable for the fulfillment of Jesus’ destiny would be a grueling thirty years! You, too, will spend time in the wilderness seasons of barrenness. Are you willing to wait on the Lord’s timing?
"Finally, after several years in Egypt, God spoke to Joseph again in a dream. Herod was dead. This time it was I (Mary) who grabbed Jesus and ran out the door with Joseph trailing behind. We couldn’t get home fast enough!"
Do You Feel Forgotten?
Do you feel as if you’re on a shelf, living an ordinary life? Are you changing diapers, cooking dinner and dealing with the neighbors while crying out in your heart, "Lord, have you forgotten me? Why don’t people recognize my gifting? Don’t they realize I had a radical visitation back in 1990?"
Mary had thirty years of obscurity to develop a hidden testimony – a secret history with God. You, too, have an appointed time to build family, community and greater intimacy with Jesus. In the midst of that time you may feel like crying out, "What’s taking so long? By the time my destiny comes, I’ll be pursuing it in a wheelchair!" But seasons of preparation are important. These are the times when God works patience, radical passion and deep devotion into your life.
Prayer: Lord, draw me away and speak tenderly to my heart. Teach me to embrace the wilderness seasons of my life. Help me to make You the final goal rather than ministry. Teach me to encounter You even in the midst of everyday life. I want develop a secret history with You, Lord. I love you so very much!
Mary’s Prophetic Journey - Part 4 of 6
Finally, Ministry Begins!
Matthew 12:48 - “But He answered and said to the one who told Him, ‘Who is My mother and who are My brothers?’ And He stretched out His hand toward His disciples and said, ‘Here are My mother and My brothers! For whoever does the will of My Father in heaven is My brother and sister and mother.’”
After a radical visitation and Jesus being born, escaping to Egypt as a refugee, coming back to Nazareth and living an ordinary life for thirty years, then finally His ministry begins! Great revival of signs and wonders sweeps the land.
“When I was forty-five years old, life changed dramatically, for Jesus and me (Mary). He started bringing home a rag tag bunch of fishermen to dinner. He never could resist a stray. Then we were at a wedding and he changed water to wine. Now he’s moving in signs and wonders. In the blink of an eye, He has a huge crowd following Him everywhere. It’s been a long time coming, but I can see now that with this popularity, He will soon be King of the Jews.”
A New Beginning
“Finally my ministry – I mean His ministry - is beginning. I’ve never seen an outpouring of God like this before," Mary muses. "It’s incredible! At His very words, demons flee, blind eyes are opening, and lepers are cleansed. Thousands are being healed. You are the King of the Jews. It was prophesied. I didn’t make this up. The angel Gabriel visited me, it all happened like he said. The excitement of the crowds grows daily as my Son walks among the people bringing revival. But what does He mean, ‘Who is my mother?’”
Our greatest enemy is ourselves. It is very hard not to desire position, glory and people to revere our name. But God wants those who are concerned with the fame of His name. Mary, even as the birth mother of Jesus, had to relinquish all rights over her Son in the midst of watching the prophetic promises spoken over her finally be fulfilled.
After thirty years of a secret history of protecting her child, bearing the shame and stigma of his birth, and having to sacrifice her home and family only to live thirty years of obscurity preparing Jesus for this time, Mary truly had much to die to. It didn’t matter what she thought she deserved or was entitled to. She had to die to even the reputation of being His mother.
A New Generation
God is raising up a nameless, faceless generation who will bear the mark of the cross. When people see them, they will see Jesus. An army of God is arising – ones who love not their own lives unto death. We must relinquish control and just follow the Father, even as Jesus did. This journey will take us to the cross.
It is important to realize that here Mary was in a season of blessing where the Holy Spirit was sweeping through the land by the touch of her Son. But even in this season of prosperity, God was asking that she would decrease so that He could increase.
The cycles of the prophetic carry us through a journey of increase and decrease. What season are you in? The hardest time to grow humility is actually in seasons of great visibility and prosperity. Suffering often protects us from self-promotion and pride. Can you keep humble even in times of great blessing and increase? Can you give up control and follow Him?
Prayer: I want to be part of Your nameless, faceless army who is desperate for Your Glory alone. Help me to relinquish my rights, die to my reputation and just follow after You.
Mary’s Prophetic Journey - Part 5 of 6
The Dark Night of the Soul
Luke 19:25 - Near the cross of Jesus stood his mother, his mother's sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene.
The disciples fled to save their lives. Mary was kneeling in the shadow of the cross, weeping, screaming in anguish as her first born Son hung naked and bloody. The ominous thunder was crowded out by Jesus agonizing cry, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken Me?”
Mary sobs, “Why God, why? Why have you forsaken Him? Why have you forsaken me? He was supposed to deliver all of us. He was our salvation and now He’s gone. If you really loved us why would you allow this?”
Unable to See the Big Picture
Mary’s anguished heart bled under the shadow of a Roman cross, powerless to intervene. Her Son and her prophetic promises were dying. She had no revelation of the resurrection. She couldn’t see the raging demonic battle with Jesus, the mighty warrior, snatching the keys of death and hell by the power of His shed blood. After waiting for thirty-three years, everything was dying - it looked like complete and utter failure.
With Jesus in the prime of His life and in the midst of a tremendous revival, He’s dying on the cross -- and so is Mary. She was in a crisis of faith, and the Father had turned His face away. She was devastated and felt abandoned and betrayed.
The Work of the Cross in Your Life
The cross is being worked in our lives; sometimes even through other people’s choices. When Jesus chose to go to the cross, Mary was compelled to be there too. How many of you have a daughter who had an abortion or abuses drugs? The dreams of a beautiful marriage ended in divorce? A husband who is addicted to online pornography? Or, the devastation of a child preceding you in death?
Are you in a mid-life crisis? Mary was in her late forties when her whole world caved in. We want to believe the Lord will rescue us at the last moment, but often His plan is to crucify us. Everything dies at the cross: your relationships, ministry, agendas, reputation, finances --stripped bare for all to see. No one dies gracefully.
Persevering through the Fire to Come Out Gold
As you hit bottom, you hear the tormenting voice of the enemy whispering, “Your life is almost over and you have nothing to show for it. Where is your God now?” But as God takes you through these hot, purifying fires, He works gold in the depth of your being. He gives you a love that can’t be quenched by despairing circumstances. The challenge is to really believe in the goodness of God.
If you cry out to be part of the Bride, then you need to be identified with the sufferings of the cross. In the midst of great agony and pain, when no one is there, Jesus holds you. A deeper intimacy of bridal love takes place as you cling to Him during horrendous times of suffering. We all need to cry out in total surrender, “Lord, I’ve no where to go. You’re my all in all.”
Prayer: Lord, I embrace your cross! Father, search me and help me to nail everything – even that which You have promised me – to the cross and to let You do whatever You have to do to make me nothing less than Your reflection. Don’t stop, Lord. I want all of you, so take all of me.
Mary’s Prophetic Journey - Part 6 of 6
Luke 24:31-34 - "Then their eyes were opened and they knew Him; and He vanished from their sight. And they said to one another, ‘Did not our heart burn within us while He talked with us on the road, and while He opened the Scriptures to us?’ So they rose up that very hour and returned to Jerusalem, and found the eleven and those who were with them gathered together saying, ‘The Lord is risen indeed…’"
"Jumping up and down with ecstatic joy, Mary burst out, 'He’s alive! He’s risen!’ When I heard those words, my heart nearly burst as I ran to see for myself. I thought I cried all my tears on Golgotha, but when our eyes met, it was like a flood. As I ran into His open arms, He scooped me up and spun me around in joyous laughter.
These times we shared were the most precious of my whole life. That made it easier to release Him -- again. As I watched Him ascend, I prayed again, ‘Lord, be it unto me as you will, for the rest of my life.’”
Resurrection of Broken Dreams
Out of great death, comes great life! Mary’s prophetic promises were limited by her world view. She saw Jesus as King of the Jews over the little nation of Israel during her life. In reality, He was King of Kings and Lord of Lords for all people and all time. At the cross, He crucifies our limited view concerning the fulfillment of our prophetic destiny and resurrects it to His eternal view. The Lord revives broken dreams, but they rarely look like we expect them to.
“Explosions of glory! The tangible presence of the Holy Spirit! Now, it was not just me who was overshadowed, but all one hundred twenty of us. Tongues like fire fell and we were gloriously baptized in the Holy Spirit. We couldn’t keep the news to ourselves and ran, pushing each other out the door and down the narrow staircase to tell everyone.”
“We were so excited that we gave ourselves to prayer night and day, sharing all we had, and loving each other so much. We grew from one hundred twenty to three thousand to five thousand! Signs, wonders and miracles followed as we told everyone about Jesus. It should be easy to grow the church until we see Jesus coming again in the clouds.”
The Power of The Holy Spirit
They were baptized in the Holy Spirit and the church was set ablaze – just like the Lord wants your life to be ignited now. They received the gifts of tongues and the courage to be radical and passionate lovers of Jesus Christ. The outpouring of the Holy Spirit was, and still is, a ministry of multiplication, intimacy and partnership.
When the Holy Spirit moves through you, it’s not just for your benefit, but it’s to bring conviction, salvation, healing and deliverance to suffering humanity. Mary was a carrier of the glory of God. Are you willing to be a carrier to bring the glory to your family, neighborhood and work place? Are you willing to birth revival?
Gospel Spread Through Warfare
It was anything but easy for Mary and the early church. Martyrdom and persecution scattered the believers, resulting in the spread of the Gospel to other nations. Mary’s journey on earth continued not only with revival, but also seasons of tremendous warfare -- cycles of life and death maturing her toward bridal love.
Prayer: Lord, thank you that you resurrect our promises so much bigger than anything we could ever imagine. Thank You that when the seed falls to the ground and dies, You spring forth a harvest of righteousness and peace. You shatter our expectations with Your goodness. I love you, Jesus.