All my accomplishments are rubbish compared to knowing Jesus Christ.
Posted 5/12/16 at 3:07 PM | Neil Vermillion
In this world we will surely endure hardships and confusion. No doubt about it. And this truth is what makes encouragement so very important and valuable to us. Without it we are prone to lose heart and give up along the way. So we work hard, but we also need to refresh our heart and our mind with a solid dose of encouragement.
Encouragement can come in many forms, but perhaps the greatest is from personal prophecy, as this is not only God-given, but it's also highly specific, highly relevant to the recipient. So in this way a personal prophetic word can function not only to bring about correction when needed, but also, and most commonly, most importantly, encouragement, exhortation, edification, and comfort.
Now if one is concerned about the future and events developing, a personal prophetic word can also bring about a clear, and oftentimes, much needed, perspective. So many times we focus our eyes on the here and now, or we focus on what seems to be reasonable based on our own personal experience. However, a prophetic word, personal or corporate, can shift us away from these two mindsets and allow us to focus on what God is saying, seeing things more closely from his perspective. FULL POST
Posted 4/13/16 at 5:12 PM | Neil Vermillion
There is no doubt we all actively attract favor and blessings when we closely follow God's guidelines and commands. Of course this is the very reason he gives these guidelines in the first place, but it is so affirming to know this in our hearts and in our minds instead of believing his commands are merely to diminish our joy and happiness. In fact, it is true that we will only receive and participate in the fullness of our joy when we are obedient to God's will for our lives, both in the micro format in the little details of our lives, as well as the macro format in the larger themes that continue to play out in our lives again and again.
And so with this in mind, we look at commands, and guidelines very differently because we know these are meant for our ultimate joy and pleasure, bringing us the most fulfillment possible. One does not need a specific personal prophetic word in order to know this is God's heart for us, to possess the maximum blessing and benefit possible for each of us. In fact, this is the very reason Jesus came to Earth, so that we might be united again with the Father and to apprehend every blessing God has set aside for us. FULL POST
Posted 4/5/16 at 2:17 PM | Neil Vermillion
It is easy to look at everything going on in the world and find yourself overwhelmed with negative feelings, heavy emotions that can take a toll on one's spiritual well being. We see fear give way to more fear, anger, and eventually hatred. We see animosity, vitriol, violence, and the need for vengeance take the place of brotherly love, kindness, compassion, and charity.
In this dark sea of turmoil through which we find ourselves navigating, the wisdom and insight of a daily prophetic word can remind us how important it is to find God in one another and to treat others with the love and respect this requires. We are called to love even our enemy. We are taught that hatred is akin to committing murder in our hearts, and that we cannot truly receive the love of the Lord where we bear hatred for one of his children.
The first step on the path toward righteousness is compassion and forgiveness, which is the most necessary during the times it seems most difficult. Even knowing that Judas would betray him, even knowing that Peter would deny him, Jesus shared his last meal with them offering his body and blood and the salvation promised to all of us. FULL POST
Posted 4/4/16 at 9:55 PM | Neil Vermillion
So many times, we think of love as a warm, fuzzy feeling; a natural reaction to someone or something that makes us feel happy, inspired, secure. Sometimes we lose sight of the moments love has to prove itself. It can be easy to get swept up or misled by our overwhelmingly positive associations with the word, ignoring that it is so much more than a feeling. It is so much more than what we receive for ourselves.
Love revolves around sacrifice. For our greatest example of love, the one who commanded us to love one another as He loved us, made the ultimate sacrifice to demonstrate the Father's love for us. Indeed, love can feel life-giving, because it is. But giving life to another is accomplished through the sacrifice of what we give of our own lives. By laying down his life, Jesus fulfills our corporate prophecy, and we are assured mercy and the promise of eternal life with the Father in heaven.
But what of our temporary time on earth? We look for love in places and things, and indeed many times, in the people around us. In our temporary time on earth, we seek things which will only satisfy us temporarily. We get consumed with what’s next instead of that which is right in front of us, that which we know to be true, the love we already have within us, the promises we are called to fulfill for others. We must use this time to demonstrate the kind of life-giving love Jesus showed us. Instead of being consumed with how we can receive the love we're looking for, we should look to give that love to others. FULL POST
Posted 4/1/16 at 11:22 AM | Neil Vermillion
In times of stress and high emotion, where is the first place you turn? Who is the first to come to mind? Do you seek the comfort of your mother, perhaps the wisdom of your father? Do you look to your spouse? Maybe, you give your best friend a call. Perhaps, you share them only with a piece of paper with enough room to contain the words in your heart and mind.
Can a prophetic word for today remind us that we are not alone, that we are part of a grander plan, and encourage us to come back and seek comfort and counsel from He who knows our heart's deepest longings and needs? We can be encouraged to see God not only as our Father who loves us, but as a best friend who's always in our corner, our first partner and greatest example of love and support.
We need to rebuild our friendship with the one who has known our story since the beginning of time. We need to seek comfort in the one who promises that he will walk through us in these times. Seek to spend time with God in prayer. Talk to him and listen for his response, the way you would a friend. Trust that as you are loyal and faithful to Him, He returns that loyalty and that faithfulness.
For though we are made in his image, destined to serve his purpose, created to worship and praise Him above everything, He also seeks that exchange with us. In our times of stress, He implores us not to worry, but rather, to remember that He will provide every want and need, and we are asked only to seek Him, to turn to Him, to have faith in Him. FULL POST
Posted 3/31/16 at 8:03 AM | Neil Vermillion
What can help us escape the din of this world? The thoughts that bombard our minds and hinder internal peace? What can help us re-center ourselves toward the loving Father who created us? The answer is straight-forward but easily cast aside: prayer.
Prayer must become habit if we are to truly understand the way it benefits us as individuals and as one body in Christ. We should seek to be intentional in our intentions and our gratitude. While there may be so much to be thankful for, how often is one inclined to take a moment and actually give thanks to the One who blesses us so greatly?
Prayer is the food of our spiritual life. Without prayer, how can we hope to quench our thirst and nourish ourselves with any semblance of sustenance? A personal prophetic word can be step in the right direction for those who feel unsure of how to pray, unsure of what to pray for. Asking for discernment, understanding God's work in our life, and gaining insight as to how his plans are playing out in our own personal prophecy all lend to thoughtful, intentional prayer. FULL POST
Posted 3/29/16 at 2:16 PM | Neil Vermillion
Most people find it an important part of adult life to keep things in order. We clean out our offices, our cars, our homes. We find new ways to make the task of cleaning and organizing more efficient. With spring upon us, many of us have taken up the ritual of spring cleaning, preparing to usher in brighter days and warmer weather. Perhaps it is the promise of life new and renewed which moves us to clear the way for the things we look forward to in this season.
But what of a world tidied up around us if our souls and spiritual health is in disarray. What can we do to clean up our hearts and minds and return closer to Jesus and his ways? A step in the right direction may be inspired by consistent reading of the daily prophetic word. As most goals that require effort need a catalyst, the words of encouragement and insight may serve as a motivating factor to dust off our hearts, take a good look at what we hold within ourselves, and do away with those thoughts and emotions that don't serve our relationship with God.
Maybe it is the promise of forgiveness that will encourage you to confess the sins collecting dust in your heart. While we know that Jesus died for our sins, that we are promised salvation through his sacrifice, we will be held accountable for our words and deeds in this world. Where we are bombarded by the mistakes of our past, we are not leaving the proper room for Jesus to come into our hearts and lives, and we are depriving ourselves of the love and mercy all his children inherit through his grace. FULL POST
Posted 3/28/16 at 5:09 PM | Neil Vermillion
Many of us have goals, and common ones at that. We seek financial security for ourselves and for our families. Perhaps we seek knowledge, pursuing opportunities to further our education and get that next degree. All of us seek the emotional stability found in our relationships with friends, relatives, and spouses. We crave the human connection and the need to be understood. We put the people and things in our world which help us to make sense of our place in this one.
We must remember that everything is to be done in his name for his will. As we seek that financial security, are we prioritizing material desires or are we looking to help those with less resources than our own? This is not to say that it is not healthy, or that it is wrong to take your family on a well-deserved vacation, to take a moment away from this world and reconnect with those who love you.
But in our aspirations, we must not leave behind those who find themselves in less desirable circumstances. We must not prioritize the things financial security buys us, but rather the opportunity it affords us to show God's love for us through our love for others. FULL POST
Posted 3/27/16 at 7:28 PM | Neil Vermillion
Regardless who you are, we all need and value those who are honest with us. These honesty people tend to be those who not only love us, in one way or another, but are also fairly courageous as it requires a certain level of risk in order to really love someone. And these qualities are both rare and valuable to each of us, and so over the course of time we grow to love and respect those who love and respect others. We can see the value the place on those around them, and we know they are noble and selfless in their service of loving support to others.
And while we observe and recognize this loving service, many times we are slow to offer this same service to others. We are likely happy to receive it, but tend to be slow to give it. This is part of the reason we grow to value this kind of honest love over the course of time, because we increase in our ability to recognize and appreciate it. And with this in mind we can always be confident that God will love us, not only unconditionally, but honestly too. FULL POST
Posted 3/25/16 at 4:12 PM | Neil Vermillion
In one way or another we've all been called to do the work of ministry. Some are called to specific offices, such as Prophetic, Evangelists, Apostles, Teachers, or Pastors, but the majority of the Body of Believers are not. Though not called to a specific office of ministry we are all called to be functioning ministers, in one way or another.
With this understanding we cannot simply sit idle and allow others to take care of the responsibility assigned to us. So we should adopt a new mentality, an attitude of action, rather than sitting back passively allowing others to carry out the labor of the kingdom. Most people sit back because they are exactly clear as to which direction to take. They don't fully understand who they are, and what they've been called to do.
The truth is we've all been called to a particular form of service. Some calls are bigger than others. Some are very different than others. But in all cases, they are valuable and important as they serve a significant function and role which is essential for the Body to not only cooperate, but to thrive together in union and harmony. FULL POST