Wednesday, December 17, 2014

"I was cold and you kept me warm..."

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell

"For I was hungry, and you fed me. I was thirsty, and you gave me a drink. I was a stranger, and you invited me into your home. I was naked, and you gave me clothing. I was sick, and you cared for me. I was in prison, and you visited me.'" - Jesus as recorded in Matthew 25:35-36


Photo courtesy of Temple and Cindy Cash

Photo courtesy of Temple and Cindy Cash
Generosity oozes out of every fiber of Cindy's being as the compassion of God radiates her countenance. Glimpses of Jesus' face seem to appear - He radiates through her in a similar way as He did through Mother Teresa.

Amazed as I watch her while we carry an intentional conversation - conversation that gently provokes the stream of gratitude to fall from her beautiful eyes down her sculpted face.  Lips full as they quiver, her gentle voice shaking; overwhelmed with joy, she is able to finally say, "It was after the September homeless outreach. All of a sudden the sleeping bag concept came to my mind; the homeless needed Christmas presents and I'm going to start praying for it.  A few weeks later I started passing out slips of paper telling people, "Pray with me, pray with me, I don't know where the money is coming from, but please pray with me." So they prayed and a few weeks later the church family came to me and said, "Cindy, you've got it all." She continued, "Two hundred new sleeping bags, socks, hats and gloves and now because of other donations within our local church family we're able to give more."

"Wow!" was all I could say, and in that moment I had to know more. 
I had to know more about this 'God compassion' that compelled her to wake up every day and so I asked, "Cindy, what are you envisioning on Saturday?" Seemingly iridescent tears of gratitude, likened to gems, continued to stream down her face; her voice becoming smaller; choking back tears she interrupted the silence and said, "To keep them from being cold; to have a Christmas present; to have something to open on Christmas, even though it's a few days before, but actually having a Christmas present because I know many of these people haven't had a present for many, many years. To be warm, those sleeping bags will keep them warm."

This says so much doesn't it? Hoarding perspective of "wants" diminish in the face of true "needs". In my mind as I am reminded of our conversation, these words of Cindy's only Christmas wish list, "To keep them warm...to keep them warm" echoes Jesus's words,

"For I was hungry, and you fed me. I was thirsty, and you gave me a drink. I was a stranger, and you invited me into your home. I was naked, and you gave me clothing. I was sick, and you cared for me. I was in prison, and you visited me.'"

TRIUMPHANTLY reminded of God's VICTORIOUS love, which REVEALS YET AGAIN, HIS MATCHLESS, ENDLESS, ETERNAL LOVE IS about - 'THEM'.
Selfless, unconditional love that has no concern of self, only for others.

Thank you for sharing this blog entry via social media...

Mentioning a few donors from this post:
REACH Church, 10400 Anderson Mill, Austin, Texas
Crown Donuts, 10400 Anderson Mill, Austin, Texas
Shipley Donuts, 10401 Anderson Mill, Austin, Texas 
Generous people throughout the community who assist every month with toiletries (i.e. hygiene kits including: razors, soap, shampoo, toothbrush, toothpaste, etc.)

Shout outs of gratitude to the following companies:
Academy in Cedar Park for the great deal with the sleeping bags, with FREE shipping cost and delivered directly to the Cash family's driveway. 
Were given a good deal from ebay and Dollar Tree
Walmart helped with blankets
La Tapatia Taqueria, discounted burritos to hand out every month to those who are living in homeless conditions

Monday, December 15, 2014

Purpose

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Stevens Criswell

Matthew 22:37-40

Tattooed on my heart were these words, "Teresa, titles and positions are seasonal - but purpose is eternal."

Sabotaging truth, obliterating lies caused me to take notice of the mindset of this world system. From 'raving' accolades, 'proper' recognition, 'honorable' status, 'coveted' titles and 'desirable' positions of authority. Is there anything wrong with those things?  No - yet when the focus of the accolades and titles become our identity, that is when the results of this focus becomes dangerous.  What happens when the season ends of those things? Sadly, what we thought was 'identity' quickly disappears and leaves the door wide open for depression to come in with lies to entangle and ensnare us causing us to shipwreck when it could have been prevented all along.

But how can it be prevented? 

Quite simply, being in awe of God by intentionally noticing things that were always there - those things we simply forgot to take notice. Look up at the sky, or intentionally hear the sounds of nature's proclamations and even think of the different people that surround us right now - no matter if they rub us the wrong way or encourage us - just take notice of how intricately beautiful they have been created. In this intentional, purposeful recognition - it's incredible - the seeking with insatiable hunger and thirst to know Who God is even more.  There will never be an end to this unfolding awe of realizing Who God is...in this endless, vast desire for Him is when royal identity of who we truly are is revealed by the Spirit of God through His living Word - the Supernatural guidebook for living - revealing who He says we are which in turn shows us that nothing in this life is to be compartmentalized but to effortlessly flow. 

Surprisingly, this life is not about being the greatest husband and wife, or this super "bread winner" or "super" mom.  This life is not about being the best business person or entrepreneur, or even attaining to have a resume like King David or the Proverbs 31 woman.  There is this simple realization that many have missed along the way - including myself - but now I see differently, through eyes that have been covered with the Divine Blood of Jesus - this realization to receive the identity of God's purpose over us - it's about being His son and daughter - and in this God's matchless grace abounds to flow through us in our marriage, parenting, leadership and friendships - we become the best because His best is flowing through us, empowering us.

The identity of His acceptance and royal adoption trumps rejection on every level; compelling us to soar above title and positions; no longer striving but now thriving in and with purpose.

For example, when God showed me my purpose statement as He utilized vessels to assist me in recognizing it, this supernaturally wrecked my life forever in the most incredible way. So here it is...my purpose statement.." My purpose is to encourage others and reveal the love of God."  It's simple.  This is my navigational tool in every aspect of my life. So when someone is rude - my first reaction is to go "Teresa violent on them with a few choice words" but then God's purpose for me awakens me by the Holy Spirit's power, reminding me yet again to "encourage others and reveal the love of God".  When the spirit influencing a person to move me out of purpose - purpose reminds me of what I'm called to live no matter what.

When life seems to be unraveling or when victory is being experienced - my purpose remains.   However when life attempts to get the best of me and I lay down my purpose and step over God's promises to take on my measly rights - I will almost immediately recognize so clearly what will happen instead - the results will be the opposite of my purpose and that will be, "discouraging others and NOT revealing the love of God". 

Meanwhile, yet even in that, I am awakened by purpose that is surrounded with God's grace to empower me to make it right next time.  No matter my title or position or lack thereof - no matter the challenges and change - purpose is unchanging - and the same is with God. God is true to Who He is - in the midst of changing seasons - in the midst of our tantrums and praises - He is not moved by our manipulating prayers or our "right on" moments - He is IMMOVABLE AND STEADFAST as He is motivated by Who He is and that is pure, holy, relentless, violent love.

I have come to this conclusion: the trying moments of life are the litmus tests to triumphantly and victoriously remind me of why I'm here on this earth. Purpose is not about me, it is just to flow through me. As purpose flows it is that constant encouragement of being mindful of those who need to be encouraged and it's about WHO they need to see, and that's God - and although it may not be about me, He sees me and loves me and with that holy love I've received, I must see it as an honor to share it with all those I come into contact with, and in that - guess what comes easy?  His love, His forgiveness, His mercy and His loyalty.  Our lives will begin to reveal how we are no longer just loyal to those who are loyal to us - but being loyal to ALL - deserved and especially on those who I would "say" aren't deserving. 

Finally, our purpose statements cause us to not give up on God, life, ourselves or others as it will echo Matthew 22:37-40...love God with everything and in that "love exchange" from Him we can properly love ourselves and others which will result in never giving up! Go in His grace and watch in awe as your weakness is perfected by His strength. When we partner with Him, we are empowered by His grace to do more than we could have ever imagined without Him (Ephesians 3:20)!

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Art or the Artist?

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Stevens Criswell



"The heavens declare and tell of the glory of God, the skies display His craftsmanship..."
~ Psalm 19 ~

Sitting here with that 'aha' moment. 
That moment of being in awe of the creativity of an artist - but never knowing the artist. 

Needless to say, I am humbly reminded that the same goes with the beauty of creation - I can be in awe of the Creator's handiwork but truly not know Him. 

My eyes well up with tears as I can feel a glimpse of how He wants us to know Him so intimately. Not just knowing 'about' Him or what we "think" we know - but truly knowing Him through His Son, The Abundant Life giving Truth of the Waymaker Jesus, revealed by the Holy Refreshing Spirit of God - not just as our Rescuer but as The lover of our souls. 

He wants us to climb into the depths of His heart, where we will see a glimpse of His magnificent, holy face and wherever we go and whatever we do, the revealing of His glory takes place. 

Finding opportunities to be in His creative "love story" of hope - wooing others to their true destiny; sabotaging self, encouraging others as they receive the kisses of God through us revealing His hot pursuit of each of them. 

His matchless, endless and incomprehensible love through us with embraces of hope; words of life; quality time not measured in quantity but intentionality; acts of service with a cheerful, joyful heart and gifts from within that make room for the King of kings to enter our lives with refreshment as we pour out onto others never running dry; revealing His royalty, annihilating every tool of peasantry!

Let us continue in this intimate pursuit of our King - not waiting until we face tough times - but every moment - in our highs, mediums and lows - let's not just know His work but let us know Him by the Revealer, Who is the Holy Spirit revealing The Word of God in and through our lives.

He's waiting...

Friday, December 12, 2014

Be impressed...

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell

"If you receive a prophet as one who speaks for God, you will be given the same reward as a prophet. And if you receive righteous people because of their righteousness, you will be given a reward like theirs."
~ Matthew 10:41 ~

When I say, "I'm not easily impressed..." this may need to be reconsidered. I am learning when celebrating others - no matter who they are, the title they carry or the lack thereof, there is this supernatural ability to receive the gifts of God that are within others.

The triumphant, victorious reminder today is realizing the beautiful gifts of God impact - causing an impression of sorts catapulting us to a place of awe that His glory is vibrantly recognized and revealed.

Just as nature exquisitely declares the glory of God, so do others when I deliberately take notice. People are not meant to be seen - they're meant to be honored and recognized as a treasure; a unique masterpiece; fearfully and wonderfully made by God!

So today no matter where we are or what we're doing - let's just be impressed!

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Edited - Prayer that changes EVERYTHING?

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by The Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell

I apologize as I realized there were a few grammatical mishaps on my part.  I could blame the auto correct on my mobile device, but I won't...thank you so much for understanding. :)

"Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive anyone's sins, they are forgiven. If you refuse to forgive them, they are not forgiven."
- John 20:23, NLT -

Do you want to pray a prayer that will change EVERYTHING in your life?

The prayer I speak of could be considered ugly, yet it revealed and continues to reveal the face of God's beauty.

I'm not talking about the prayer known as "The Lord's Prayer" - although that is part of it. Nor am I referring to the prayer during the grueling moments before His arrest in the Garden of Gethsemane. Perhaps the greatest prayer declared by Jesus while tortuously hanging upon that splintered cross on Calvary was the following prayer, "Father forgive them for they know not what they do."

This prayer we refer to as Jesus' words were meant to be echoed by us not just admired.  I wonder - is this the prayer that moved heaven to shake the earth and hell? Is this the prayer that caused the violent rip of the veil that once separated God from man?

I sit here - paused by Kingdom Love that moves to forgive like that! My spirit shakes within me -
to be moved by Him instead of being moved by those who are opposed to Him!!!

I believe this just might be the prayer that changes EVERYTHING - it changes EVERYTHING - because it changes us to be more like Him and less like us.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Ministry?

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell

"Now to God, Who will do the exceedingly, abundantly above all that we could ever hope, ask or ever dare to imagine according to the power that is vibrantly living within us."
~ Ephesians 3:20 ~

As I was completing my much needed chore list of  "to do's", in that time of pondering, I was "seeing" a young man and a young woman. In seeing them, I just had that knowing they did not know one another - nor had I ever met them.

As I saw each one walking, they were on the path people told them to take. They were told the only thing that would matter to God is if they walked on the path of "ministry".

In that moment of envisioning this, it was as though I could hear the conversations from when they were young - that "being in the ministry" was their calling. Yet as I saw them on their individual path of destiny - I was surprised to notice and recognize that they were on a path not from God.  Now it definitely looked it and they were even successful - yet in the process they were empty and void as for way too long they listened to the mere earthly voices of people who had good intentions but had no idea the intentional purpose of God nor those they are to later encounter with God's crazy, immeasurable love.

Meanwhile the yearning of their hearts are to be marketplace leaders. 

In this very moment as my fingers dance across the keyboard, I am getting that 'unction' to declare,  "The destiny from God within you is the Holy Spirit whispering for you to awaken, arise, stand, walk and run with God's intentionality to utilize the influence and charisma that God has blessed within you."

Young man, young woman, wherever you are, you are marketplace leaders. You are ministers of wealth to whom God has appointed with the gift of giving.  The purpose is to be those who reveal God's glory by giving a hand up, influencing the many in the realm of the business world and more than anything being an asset not a liability.

Today's triumphant, victorious reminder is to remember that God's grace is what empowers us to rise above what we could ever hope or dare to imagine and do the exceedingly, abundantly more than we could ever hope, ask of ever imagine according to the power of the Holy Spirit that is within us!

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Weapon of Gratefulness

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by The Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Stevens Criswell

"Enter his gates with thanksgiving;
    go into his courts with praise.
    Give thanks to him and praise his name."

- Psalm 100:4 -

Do we want to overcome by not being led by how we feel?

Do we want to see victory in not being led by what we just heard that may have been hurtful?

It's easy to be seduced away from focusing on God in the midst of negativity, isn't it?

Are we being led by those thoughts that whisper with deceit, "Look! You prayed and it still didn't work"?
Are we being led by status quo?

I know for me these are temptations but God always provides a way out by the weapon of thankfulness and praise to the One Who is The Exit Route.

So I ask myself,
Are feelings willing to die for me?
Are familiar bad experiences that try to convince me to disobey so I'm not hurt again, did those experiences die for me?
Is negativity willing to die for me?
Are those lying thoughts willing to die for me?

Of course the answer is no! So then, am I willing to give up and die for a lie when the Truth and Abundant Life Who is Jesus already died for you and me?

Isaiah 53 shows Jesus' provision from the torture and death that He willingly laid His life for to do the will of His Father as He wanted us to be brought back to Himself so we'd follow His leading - not to be led by the lying yet cunning voices that beckon us away from God!

As we are led by The One Who gave it up so we could rise up? We are His sons and daughters - He has equipped us to rise up with the weapon of thankfulness - not only for what He has done and for what we have but we get to declare with the vibrations of the sound that comes out of our mouths to speak to Him of how we are thankful for WHO HE IS!!

Wielding the weapon of thankfulness allows us to conquer with praise as His beautiful wooing presence keeps us hidden in the safety of Who He is!!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Discernment?

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell

1 Corinthians 12


    Courtesy of Google Images
 

My heart is so lovingly convicted by the power of the Holy Spirit. I shake my head as I write this, how could this epidemic happen? How did this thinking creep into the church?

The subject I speak of is DISCERNMENT. This subject has been thwarted by the enemy as the 'right' to excuse ourselves from people's lives that we don't have time for or feel threatened by.  I have been guilty of this...does it mean I continue to 'hang out' with them - of course not, but it's an assignment to allow God's compassion to flow through me in my personal prayer time to cheer for them in the spirit.

I am learning so lovingly by the Holy Spirit of God that the TRUE GIFT OF Discernment - IS the gift to discern spirits - not the right to crush the spirit of a human being.

The gift of discernment is not meant to judge people. Instead it's to judge the spirit at work in order TO SAVE LIVES. Yes! Saving lives by identifying what spirit is operating in or over a person. In this is how we see clearly recognize motives so that we command that spirit in the authority of Christ to GO so we see people who were once held hostage are now delivered!

We truly want to see miracles in our nation? Then it has to start with God's compassion flowing through us!! The LOVING GOODNESS OF GOD is what leads us to continual repentance - THE LOVE OF GOD - LOVE OF GOD - LOVE OF GOD IS WHAT LEADS TO ABUNDANT LIFE!

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

"Send Me, I'll Go"

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by The Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell

 


In honor of the greatest Veteran of all...Jesus Christ and to all the veterans from the past, present and future of our United States of America, this is to honor each of you!

They said, "Send Me, I'll Go"

"To those who bear the colors of RED, WHITE AND BLUE -
You WHO were and are moved by the theme of our BANNER as God is over you....
Those who witnessed their brother's and sister's who died in their youth -
It was not in vain as they went into paradise with the triumph of Calvary's salute.


To bear the brunt of freedom which is NEVER free,
It cost many something, both in soul, word and deed.
Many bear the outward and inward scars of the enemy's fight,
but your scars reveal triumph in the midst of tragedy's plight!

No fury of the enemy with weapons of tyranny and control could hold back a nation of warriors who would dare to run and shout, "O HELL NO!"
Though the bullets flew and the missiles launched -
we will not forget you mighty veterans who stood up and fought.

Today and everyday we say, "Thank you" to a remnant of warriors who shout, "Send me - I'll go"
For there are a people who echo the greatest hero of all, my Jesus who willingly gave up their own freedom so we can live and breathe with abundant life.
We honor you soldiers who have said and say, "Goodbye" to family and friend
to face a foe who has no love for life.

You will not be forgotten as we salute you with thankfulness;
refraining from complaints to overcome for the benefit of fellow man.
To every man and woman and their family's who will go without - we thank each one of you who allowed them to say, "Send me, I'll go" as they reach out.

Reaching past the now to fortify our future so that we may remain under the banner of God and the bleeding colors of THE RED, WHITE AND BLUE!"

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

BAM! Victory!

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by : Teresa Criswell


"Today is a good day for a good day" because God made it! He made it with you in mind and He is faithful, whether we see it right now or not. You are His masterpiece in Christ Jesus. And remember the enemy flees - he runs in terror when we submit and lean and trust in God as our submission declares resistance to the ways of the enemy and in that hiding in God - he flees in terror for a season. The enemy will be back - but we again will be ready and prepared as we utilize the equipping power of God by declaring, "It is written..." And the Blood of Jesus! We declare light in the midst of darkness. We utilize God's love in the face of hate. We utilize life in the midst of curses and all the while we get to declare Jesus name above all!!!

References:
Quote from Fixer Upper
Psalm 118:24
Ephesians 2:10
James 4:8
Revelation 12:11
"Be  Stunning To The Enemy" by Lisa Bevere

Monday, October 27, 2014

Heaven's Language - The Language called Faith

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written and shared by: Teresa Stevens Criswell
 
"Then He took a deep breath and breathed into them.  "Receive the Holy Spirit," he said.  "If you forgive someone's sins, they're gone for good.  If you don't forgive sins, what are you going to do with them?"
- John 20:22-23 - The Message (MSG)
 
 
"...Heaven has a perspective that gets lost on earth. And so we need to begin to speak the language of heaven to the issues of earth, so that we begin to see the earth come into conformity to God's plan for it." - Lisa Bevere

This means we GET TO speak the language of heaven over people - over situations - over ourselves..."we GET TO speak the language of heaven by the power of the Holy Spirit."

Please watch every minute of this video...especially toward the end - it ties together with heavenly eloquence and insight!  The last part of Lisa's story reminds me of my precious mom who did the same for her father...God is faithful - even when we don't see it...He is Faithful!  
 
 
 
 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NQf3s3idlVo

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Change in geography?

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell

http://photopin.com/search/geography


I was a great "runner" in life. When I say "runner" - not in the physical realm - but a runner from problems, from people, from difficult times. I have learned since then that changing the scenery of my geographical location may have seemed as I was "getting away" - but really as ego/self/flesh didn't die and mindset wasn't transformed - the same issues kept reappearing. It was no matter where I went, until I stopped trying to protect my "ego" it didn't matter where I ran to - "I" showed up like a creeping stalker.

The Triumphant Victorious Reminder today?  Self must die and pride must go by running after and with Jesus through intimacy with God by the Spirit's leading to read the Love Letter of God, as this provokes the pursuit to go deeper into the depths of the heart of God - as I get lost in Him, I will finally find Who I was called to be - His Masterpiece.

Sripture References:
Romans 12
John 3:3-7
Matthew 16:24
Luke 9:23

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Scrolled Love Note #5

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell



"You are Mine and I Am yours.
I Am your Love Song.
I Am your wind and breath and I long for you to see yourself and others the way I see.
I see with Triumphant, Overcoming Victory.
Let the rhythm of My heartbeat become yours, let your heart echo Mine as My joy, compassion and peace overflows by the power of My Holy Spirit.
I NEVER asked you to reveal yourself.
I NEVER asked you to do it on your own.
I NEVER asked you to give others from your own resources but from what I produce through you -
ALL I want you to do is to ECHO Me by giving to others what you have freely received for yourself from Me as I Am The Source of ALL -
I AM THE SOURCE OF LOVE, MERCY, COMPASSION, JOY, RIGHTEOUSNESS, FORGIVENESS.
The Love I have for you is beyond your understanding this side of heaven,
Papa God

Scripture References:
Song of Solomon or Song of Songs
Psalm 104
Matthew 11:28-30
Galatians 5:22
Zechariah 4:6
I Corinthians 8:6
Matthew 10

Monday, October 6, 2014

Scrolled Love Note #4

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Stevens Criswell


 
If you've read the previous posts titled "Scrolled Love Note...", you'll understand the title of this post.  The following is what I was led to write coming from a small glimpse of the Mighty heart of our Father God.  I know this is to someone who needs a 'right now' word on worthiness.

"I Am worthy -
I Am a mirror for you to look into so you may finally see your TRUE reflection.
For I The Lord call you worthy.

Yes! You are worthy for I call you worthy - I, The Lord call you worthy - hear Me!
I, The God of ALL, The GOD WHO IS WORTHY, declares you are Worthy.
For you to say you are unworthy says I am a liar, haha! I AM only TRUTH, there is no lie in Me.
I have the Last Word over your life, will you choose to believe My Words?

Let Me take every fracture of rejection and abandonment from the womb.
Let Me take every fracture from childhood.
Let Me take every fracture from adolescence.
Let Me take every fracture from young adulthood.
Let Me take every fracture from your life and
Let Me make you WHOLE - nothing broken, nothing missing. 
Let Me make every crooked path, every distorted way of living, straight.

Who told you your life was about "trying" to be a better person?
Who told you this?
Who?

I have called you to be in Me and I in you - and in Me as you submit to Me, you are a better person in every realm of your life.  I call you son and daughter - and in this you become a revealer of Me in your marriage, family, marketplace and community.  Please don't allow your current titles, positions or lack thereof to tell you who you are.  Even my gifts that you flow in is not who you are.  Focus on Who I Am and you will find out who you truly are as you find out Who I Truly Am. Love Me with all your heart, soul, mind and strength and as you make the TRUE LOVE exchange with Me, then you can properly love yourself and others; for remember my child, apart from Me you can do nothing that I have called you to do and be.

You are more valuable than every treasure known and unknown to the universe. 
What I speak - it is not only to admire what I say, but now you must echo to others, delivering the message with My peace and My love by the power of My Holy Spirit that breathes life and reveals My goodness leading them to the safety of Who I Am through repentance.
Let My words reverberate through your words and actions.

Your words, your vision and your hearing be replaced with Mine.

You ask, "How?"
This is how - "To do what is right, to love mercy, and to walk humbly before Me, your God."

I love you with My endless love - and yes it is eternally endless - there is no end to Who I Am for I Am Love.

Papa God"

Scripture References:
Revelation 4:11
Psalm 96:4
Isaiah 43:4
Romans 2:4
Matthew 22:37
Micah 6:8
 

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Scrolled Love Note #3

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Stevens Criswell


If you've read the past two posts, you'll understand what the scrolled love note 'campaign' is about.  If you need to get caught up, you can simply click here

Today, day 3 of 6, here is another scrolled love note I had the opportunity to choose - I pray this encourages you...

"You can run - but I have pursued you with My Everlasting Love.
You think I'm finished with you? Haha! My child, this is a lie - you must long to believe Me as I Am Living Truth.
Let Me have the Last Word over your life - I Am the Author and Finisher of your faith.  Will you allow Me to be the Author of your story, revealing My Victorious Testimony?
Experience Me.  See Me.  Finally know Me as the Author of your life, I urge you to now live so others can read your story with adventure and joy - encapsulated  by Me Who is Peace!
I love you with My Endless, Eternal Love,
Papa God"

Scripture References:
Exodus 17:15
John 14:6
I John 4:17-19
Hebrews 12:2
Isaiah 26:3



Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Scrolled Love Note #2

Triumphant Victorious Reminder
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Stevens Criswell



"Peace.  I Am your Peace Who allows you to walk through the muck and chaos.
I Am here - My authority I have already given you allows you to command chaos to be still and in order. This is key, CHOOSE ME moment by moment - every step - and peace will overtake you even while chaos is all around, I surround even that.  Behold Me! Make yourself aware to My presence that is already with you.

I love you with Who I Am, I Am eternal and in Me, my Love is Endless,
Papa God"

Scripture References:
Isaiah 26:3
John 14
John 16:33
Psalm 46:10

Monday, September 29, 2014

Scrolled Love Notes

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by The Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Stevens Criswell

 
For the next few days, I will be posting one scrolled love note at a time that I believe the Lord inspired me to write last week.  I was led to write 20 small notes and roll them into small scrolls. The scrolls pictured above are the ones that were left over from when we gathered at our most recent time together within the setting of, Daughters of The King Life Group.
 

Perhaps the scroll I selected today is just for you or someone you know:

"Yes! I hear you.
I heard you from those moments even when it seemed like your darkest hour.
I have always been with you.
Now it is time for you to hear Me - come to Me, come close.
I Am here.
I Am speaking.
Open My Word, My love letter to you.
As you call on Me, just know I will answer you - but I won't just answer you, I will show you great and mighty things you've never seen, dreamed or imagined before.
I love you in a way you can only fathom in the dimension of eternity.
Love,
Abba Father God"


Scripture references:
Psalm 34:17
James 4:8
II Timothy 3:16-17
Jeremiah 33:3
Romans 8:14-16

Thursday, September 11, 2014

The Transfer

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by The Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Stevens Criswell



Pumpkin spice fragrance oil permeated the morning senses to awake and crave for the Fall season that is quickly approaching. Fall reminds me of God's embrace when needed most; this particular season compels that craving for The Lord in His Word like no other.

With all of that, my daughter & I met up in the kitchen for our coffee time with Jesus as we read together through Proverbs 25:21-22, Matthew 5:43-48, Luke 6:27-38, and Romans 12:20-22

Upon these readings, we realized even more that in this life we're going to unintentionally and perhaps intentionally wrong others and others are going to do the same toward us - BUT, will we stay a mess because of it? We were reminded to ask ourselves, "How will that glorify the King of Freedom and Deliverance?"

So here's the awesome "light bulb moment"...
When we receive Salvation -Who is Jesus - as awesome and miraculous as it is to receive Salvation - even greater is the mighty responsibility. For the cost and price Jesus paid has been transferred to us who receive! So in that transfer it is this ...when we've been wronged and used - our echo can only be, "Father bless and forgive them for they know not what they do!" And watch true deliverance and freedom be lived out! We get to be the Revealers of Hope because of Christ Jesus!

Friday, September 5, 2014

Time...heal?!?!

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by The Holy Spirit
Written by; Teresa Criswell

Isaiah 61:1-3

The things said in time past so flippantly and carelessly. The things that are paid forward with the cliches of old. For instance, who came up with the saying, "Time heals"? 

"Time heals"...Really?!?! Tell that to a precious elderly person on their death bed, who is still imprisoned within their soul with past hurts, offenses, tragedies and brokenness as though the tragedy of years past happened yesterday! 

Or what about the ruins of a city? Does "time" pick up the debris of a town that once stood? Does "time" come alongside a child who lost both parents and hold them and embrace them? Does "time" give food and clothe you when you couldn't do anything but weep? NO!!! Time does nothing but bulldoze right through us - it flies with no consequences to pay - time only spends - it makes no investments, it quite simply goes right through us.

It is evidently clear that time heals no one! Here's the truth; the truth is - It's what we do WITHIN  time that determines whether healing is received or not!  And  most importantly, it is "Who" we get to say, "Yes" to within time that gives us grace to get through this life when we could not do it on our own. 


So here it is, time alone is about the "luck of the draw", it holds no one accountable and time alone produces loneliness. Yet, time with Almighty God allows us to utilize time as a well oiled machine to get things accomplished on this earth - bringing and giving healing and forgiveness to the broken who have caused others to be brokenhearted and sets the captives free - but not only sets them free but teaches us how to lean on God to STAY in HIS FREEDOM!!!

Monday, September 1, 2014

One. Step. At. A. Time.

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by The Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell & Teresa's daughter (14 years young)

This morning as I said good morning to my husband, he said, "Good morning, coffee is ready and did you know Boo was up early this morning?" (Boo is one of the many nicknames he has for our daughter). 
I said, "Really?" 
As I walked into my daughters dim lit room, I whispered, "Good morning."  
With her sweet smile as she lay snuggled below the fluffy covers, she said, "Hi mom.  I was up earlier."  
And with excitement, I responded, "Did you get to read the Word today?"  
She said, "Yes, but we (Her and Jesus) talked more than I read." 
 I giggled as I said, "Oh, okay." 
With that great smile she has, she said, "Mom, you need to read what God shared with me, I posted it on Facebook."  
I couldn't wait to read as I said, "Really? Okay, I'll go read it now."  
Upon doing so, I was overwhelmed with awe toward God - a lesson in the making that covers every area of our lives - "One Step At A Time"...here's what our daughter was led to write: 




Good morning -
Today as I was praying and talking to God, I kept having the urge to pray for the next generation!! I got this cool message from Jesus and I wanted to share it with y'all! 


Here it is...
(These are my exact notes I wrote down)

The next Generation-
How can I help to change the next generation?
1. You need to have a willing heart.
2. Ask God what your job is to change the next generation - One. Step. At. A. Time.
3. DO IT!! Don't say "what if" or "but..." No! DO WHAT HE SAYS!! Remember He has it all planned out! You are a vessel that he chose to do this job. Don't underestimate God!
4. WATCH. See what God will do when you do the small things that you thought were small, but really turned out to be big! Praise God, because when he shows you the outcome of what he has done through you look what happens, you become more willing, you become seeking and asking God more, you become wanting to do more and you become seeing the next generation change and running after God!!!!!!!!!!!!! 


How exciting and cool is that! All we need to do is take just one step and we could see everything differently, now it might take some time, but when you're willing to do all these things, God will reward you greatly!! 

Hope you have a great day!
"Paris Keelea"

Monday, August 18, 2014

Faith is Ugly?

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell

James 1



When is faith really faith?  As Terry Pruett, the well known 'Possibility Architect' and CEO of XMO Global says, "Faith isn't faith until it's tested." Well then if that is the case, if "faith isn't faith until it's tested", then how do we know when we're walking in faith?  The answer to that question is found in a few places of scripture, however one the most well known scriptures is found in James 1. The exercise and the drill to know that our faith is working within us is when we count it all joy when circumstances come our way, especially in those moments we cannot control. 

Counting it all joy? 
Really? 
This causes me to realize that when I count it all joy in the midst of trials and tests, it is because I am intentionally choosing to COUNT on God - my faith is in Him which fills me with joy that is unexplainable.

With that just think, much of the ugly things we will go through, are going through, or have gone through allows faith to get us to experience the grace of God which empowers us by the Holy Spirit's power (Who is Grace) to lift us up; allowing us to keep going when in the natural we wouldn't be able to go on our own.

In those moments when we "say" we have faith we are now able to go to the next step and now choose to use the faith that possesses us and place our faith in God.

The triumphant, victorious reminder is realizing that having faith in things to happen or for things to get better is not what God ever intended! As Mark 11:22 records - that faith is to be placed in ONE PERSON - AND THAT IS GOD HIMSELF.  When we have faith in God, by default our perspective changes - our mindsets are changed - we see from Victory and now we can boldly say to the mountain to be moved because when our faith is in God - doubt has no place!  As our pastor profoundly says, "Get doubt out" - and the answer in getting doubt out is by placing our faith in God. As we place our faith in God, doubt has no place and now we are aware of hope being on the scene and now everything that seemed daunting and even is daunting is now shifted in it's proper place - the mountain is now a plateau because my sights are on God and Him alone! 

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Broken to Beautiful

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
 Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell

Broken glass. Oil spilled. A waste...Or so I thought...



In that moment I was corrected to not look at it as a waste but as a lesson in the making.  I saw these words like a ticker in the forefront of my mind - "Broken to beautiful."


I had things to do - not a moment to waste - and I thought, "Not only was oil wasted but now my time..."

More than anything, that is when I saw the raw, naked truth of allowing God to be revealed in the midst of the broken vessel that once held my olive oil. It was as though I could hear the whisper of the Spirit, "I waste NOTHING - what you see as broken - I have already restored - I Am Restorer - I Am Rebuilder - I Am Redeemer. In that moment, the realization in the broken glass I had to clean up in the physical realm; the beauty of the oil sprawled on a small portion of the floor was uniquely beautiful.  It was as though I was hearing the whisper of the Holy Spirit, "The rich vastness of heaven is what is released when you allow the brokenness to become an exercise of revealing the glory of Who I Am.

I want to be intentionally clear on this - if we're broken because of self-inflicted wounds - then let's quickly repent and ask God to forgive you and begin living for Him - no longer focus on NOT sinning, instead FOCUS on the Life Giver and watch the longing to sin dissipate as you become more in awe of God.

More than anything, recognizing the oil of heaven in the midst of our unforeseen troubles allows us to be aware of the beautiful oil of joy - the strengthening oil of God - the trade currency of heaven on this earth. 

In no way do I ignorantly invite pain - but when pain comes, will I allow myself to recognize the majestic glory of God that is sprawled as evidence that He is right there?

What in your life, in my life that seemed to be a waste is now a triumphant victorious reminder of God's grace?  Let's allow His oil to permeate us with supernatural joy - so every time you are tempted to waver and shake - the oil of God's grace permeates your shield of faith.

 ~ Matthew 26:6-13 ~

Monday, June 23, 2014

42 years ago...


Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell

 

The landmarks that were set in the background from that memorable day on June 21, 1972, has led you both to this very moment from which your story began – From Seoul, South Korea, to Honolulu, Hawaii and finally to the Los Angeles, California airports.  Think about this – so many moments, innumerable to count all the people walking by in that moment; in every terminal; goodbyes softly spoken; hellos excitedly shared; to the vacationers coming and going to the anticipated reunions and perhaps those mourning a loss to those who were starting all over again as fear caused their hands to sweat and their hearts to sink.  Those many moments filled with people in every circumstance revolving around one another – yet in those moments, it was like a pause in the universe as you must have felt the joyful nervousness of being reunited assisted by adventure of unbridled love and the longing to start a life together in the unknown.

Meanwhile, as you stepped out into the world of the unknown – misplaced faith in following this rare kind of love – this love that crossed oceans and the great divide transformed into faith that was intentionally placed in the Author of it all – Almighty God.

Dad and mom – your love for God – and your desperation for Him is what has led to this milestone
504 months, 2,191 weeks, 15, 340 days and 368,170 hours later.
 


Your 42 year anniversary – may the both of you have an anniversary with one another in which God is glorified and you both benefit in ways never imagined, dreamed or could possibly have ever seen in the greatest of books or movies.  May you see, experience and know that you both needed one another – one did not need the other more than the other – instead God placed in each of you what the other lacked and joined together in Him is what completed two beautiful people in becoming one rare vessel that has made an impact over their children, grandchildren and so many others that you have met along the way. 

Blessings and favor abound in Him every day and all the day long.

Love, Teresa “Twiggy”
June 2014

Monday, May 26, 2014

Exhausted or Empowered?

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by The Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell

"I am given His Spirit, therefore, I have access to the mind of Christ."
~ I Corinthians 2:10-16 ~

There are two balloons - as I hold them both, they look the same. They're the same color and same size, BUT when I let go - one balloon soars to the ceiling and the other falls to the ground. The balloon filled with air and breath has no ability to allow the balloon to rise above - the balloon filled with helium allows the balloon to soar...same goes with who we are - our spirit man is pure and our soul man is weighed down by our will, emotions and past experiences. 

We expect to live a life for God in the soul, carnal realm - but it's not possible to make choices of the Spirit of God with our own power or might. HOWEVER, what is possible in Christ is to live a life according to The Spirit of God - but how? It starts with our mouth. Yes! When we regularly exercise - more than daily (Moment by moment) when our mouth, our tongue begins to declare the Truth of The Word of God - it is The Word that purely and properly renews our mind and lines up with the Holy Spirit of God. 

Be encouraged that no amount of will power can serve Almighty God without getting exhausted! If we're exhausted in the realm of "living for God" this could be an indicator that we are most likely "doing" out of the flesh versus "being" in The Holy Spirit. 

Let us be triumphantly and victoriously reminded that we cannot worship God in the flesh and opinions but only in spirit and in truth - thus is the difference in being exhausted and empowered!

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Brokenness To Wholeness

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by The Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Stevens Criswell

"...Beauty of God in exchange for ashes of this life, the oil of joy in exchange for mourning and depression, the garment of praise in exchange for the spirit of heaviness and oppression..."
~ Isaiah 61:3 ~

 As I had many times before, I dropped my phone; but this time the drop brought shattering results. 

At first bummed, then calling my mobile phone carrier to upgrade, it was in that moment I wasn't willing to pay nor sign a two year contract and found myself attempting to figure out "how" I could get my upgrade at no cost. It was in that very moment The Holy Spirit utilized my iPhone to teach me something so beautiful. It was that sweet, gentle whisper as though I could hear Him say, "Teresa,  don't worry. Let this be a reminder of your life without Me." As the call ended, in a silly way I held my phone close and said, "Thank You Lord for that reminder." 

Meanwhile, as I got really happy that my phone was broken - there it was -another teaching moment. "Teresa, this is how many are looking at life. It's as though they are seeing through distorted, broken glass due to fractures of being mishandled, mistreated and even their own mismanaged living." 

I must encourage myself and others - let the brokenness of your soul be made whole. Allow God to deliver you - it truly is a breath by breath, moment by moment, day by day intimate process with our King. The more we allow Him to hold us - the more the wholeness, the Shalom of God will manifest. Shalom is Peace - this supernatural Peace of God is what holds us up with His Abundant Grace that allows us to rise above hurt and offense and see with vision in God that "Nothing is broken and nothing is missing in Him." 

Be triumphantly and victoriously reminded that the state of our circumstances and the state of this world will not attempt to convince us that our God lacks any good, great, awesome thing.

* Deliverance is to be delivered from the lies and delivered into the healing, truth of God!

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Rescued...but by Who?

Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell

"For He has rescued us from the kingdom of darkness and transferred us into the Kingdom of His dear Son, Who purchased our freedom and forgave our sins."
~ Colossians 1:13-14 ~



The building was consumed with fire. The billowing black smoke revealed the intensity of the fire from within.
On the top floor of the enormous sky rise building with no way out, suddenly the door burst wide open with incredible intensity.
Not being able to tell if the door had been forced open due to the flames, but no matter what, the intense heat of the fire quickly consumed the room; crackling sounds were evidence that things were melting at record speeds.

Surrounded by the reminder of your last moments as your life flashes before you - you can feel the strength like never felt or imagined as you are picked up, wisked off feeling the forceful, yet gentle wind of being carried out of the building at lightening speeds.  Simultaneously within moments of being in the room to now being rushed down the stairs, you find yourself cradled in the arms of a veteran fireman, someone with controlled strength as the intensity of being rescued becomes overwhelming.

All you know is that you have been rescued. Slow motion collides with "the now" when you feel the rescuer place your feet on solid ground.  As he puts you down, his work seems to be done. With no words spoken, he walks away.  Wait! Do you let him go?  Do you let him walk away? Aren't you curious who this was that risked his life for you? Or do you let this cataclysmic - life altering moment pass you by? 

With all the intensity described, the same goes with the Rescuing Savior Jesus Christ. There are many who have let the Rescuer walk away...they talk about being saved and rescued but they don't even know who rescued them.  This hot, hunky fireman, this "man's  man" is likened to my Jesus.  He has rescued us, but many have not ran after Him, pursued Him to know more of Who is this One who rescued me?  Is the moment of being rescued more important than the One Who rescued me?  Is the event more important than the One who made the event so?

As I think upon my Rescuing Savior Jesus Christ, I think of that charge from Lisa Bevere when she wrote to me in 2004, "Teresa, Run after your Prince". A few years after her charge - this vision I shared of the "fireman" came alive in me. I realized that our churches and this country we live in is inundated with those who say they have been rescued, but have no idea who the Rescuer is.

Imagine if we did know HIM - we wouldn't live mediocre, complacent, "whatever will be, will be", passionless lives.  The results of this lukewarm living is that we know "of" the Rescuer, but we don't "know" Him.  Many of us did not pursue Him after that moment He set us on solid ground...we let Him go.  We didn't ask to 'sup' with Him, we didn't go run after Him to know more about Him.  We didn't run after Him and say, "I've got to know why you would risk it all, abandoning your rights to live - to allow me the right to not just live but live with abundance. Like bringing cookies to our local, earthly firemen - We didn't even live a more productive life to show our gratefulness.

Listen! Look! It's not too late for us! 
Run after Jesus.
Pursue Him.
Get to know His familiar smell.  Really - I mean it, you've got to smell Him - intentionally know His scent so you always know that He is near!.
Get into Him, be in awe of the One Who sent Him - our Father God.

The FIREMAN of all firemen AWAITS FOR YOU TO ASK HIM TO COMMUNE WITH HIM...WILL YOU PURSUE HIM?

There's more to this life than saying, "I'm saved" -  It's about us desiring the ONE Who saved us.
 
May this stir up an insatiable appetite to want and desire more of Him - falling in love with the Rescuer and getting to know Him as so much more - Giver, Lover, The Generous One, The Compassionate One, The Slayer of Hate as He overcomes evil with GOOD. The One Who Draws us to Himself.  The Healer, The Strengthener, The Confident One, The One Who Makes our weaknesses dissipate as His strength is made perfect in the midst of it.  The One Who Redeems; the One who gives back more than we could have ever imagined.  He is the Lord, the landowner of all the earth.  The One Who makes the earth His footstool, the Great I Am - The Alpha The Omega - The Beginning and The End, The Author, The Finisher of our Faith.  The ONE Who Has and Is the last word over our lives, if we let HIM.  He is our Shalom - the ONE who ensures that NOTHING IS BROKEN AND NOTHING IS MISSING.  THE ONE WHO MAKES THE FRACTURES BECOME WHOLE AS THOUGH IT NEVER HAPPENED.  Are we evidence of Who we've been rescued by?  Or do we just have a good 'story' to tell?

As Lisa wrote to me, so I write to you - "Run after your Prince, Your King - His Name is Jesus!"

(Applicable ways -
Ask the Father God to allow His Holy Spirit to show you.
Read the Gospel of John
Ask God, "Father, in Jesus name, I ask, will you baptize me by the power of the Holy Spirit with YOUR UNQUENCHABLE FIRE?")

Will you let me know what happens next?

How do we defeat the enemy?  By the Blood of The Lamb (Jesus) and by the Word of our Testimony who reveals Jesus! (Revelation 12:11) 


Thursday, April 3, 2014

Do you know...?


Triumphant Victorious Reminders
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell

Do you know a man who is merciful yet walks in great authority?
How about a man whose words are few yet when he speaks, his words have incredible weight?
Have you ever met a man who is so fixed on His God that the demonstration of his life is not about what he says but how he lives?

This man I ask about is none other than my earthly dad. Vanishing point, mind blowing thoughts race my mind to think that out of all people, my sisters and I would get to have a daddy like him.  I have often wondered, why me Lord?  Why would you allow me to have this sweet encounter with an earthly father who is incredibly rare?

I have to be honest, these thought have brought me to guilt at times as I was not the easiest daughter to raise - a daughter who witnessed at the age of 13, her daddy in the living room, praying on his knees to a God that seemed so far away - yet he prayed at 4 am as though he was so near.  In those moments, my dad humbled to know the only way through this life was and is to seek God with everything as guidance and protection would fall into place over his wife, my mom and his girls.

This great man who constantly spoke life into me when others gave up - he championed the heavens to chase his daughter down when she was beguiled and deceived by the world's glamor and the seemingly fulfilling gratification of right now. My dad, a man who called on Jesus, the name above every name, to dispatch His angels to take charge over me in all my ways so that I would come back home...not just home with my family - but my true home, being aware moment by moment of God's incredibly matchless presence - seeking His face, pursuing Him with everything and never turning back...that HOME! For dad you knew that once I encountered my true home not from your experience but from my own with Jesus that this would only compel me forward, loving God with everything which would overflow into loving myself and others and in that revelation of God's true love would cause me to never quit!  Dad, through partnering with God in obedience, you allowed the course to be set the course to fix our eyes on the Author and Finisher of our faith and his name is none other than JESUS!

Why do I write all this for you to see? Because today is my dad's anniversary of his birth - his birthday!

Daddy, we all love you, you are a unique treasure.  Some may only have known you as that cute, little mischievous little boy, others as that rebellious teenager and then there are those who may  have only known you as a hippie or a young man serving in the military -

Dad is the 2nd one from the left...


  - but the lineage you have left behind for your family and so many others is your demonstration of being a warrior for the King of all kings.  We must thank God for His persistent vessel in the 1970's by the name of Ray Pew who was the first to witness you drop to your knees and receive Jesus not only as Savior but Lord as Ray was the first to see your lineage forever change - and to God we are grateful for him but also grateful dad that you said YES to God - for we and so many more are a life that was and is forever changed...

.

Dad, there's something else you need to know - you were and are that awe inspiring example of how we can approach our Heavenly Father with boldness, laughter and great surety that He will never turn us away, for you did that for each of us.  I know with boldness that God will never say,  "Not now - I don't have time..." - Instead dad you gave us a glimpse of the example of consistently taking the time to pray over us, speak into us the Word of God even in the midst of squirming about wanting to go play as you allowed the patience of God to echo and be displayed through every fiber of your being.

Well dad, I could write so much more - but what a privilege and honor to know you and wish you a happy birthday.  Thank you for cheering on heaven on my behalf and even when it looked like the game of my life was ending with a score of 70-0, you cheered me on and said, "Teresa, there's a call on your life - NOW ANSWER IT - CATCH IT - YOU CAN DO IT - I BELIEVE IN YOU!"

With all that, I cheer for you my dad - WITH LONG LIFE GOD SATISFIES YOU AND HAS SHOWN YOU HIS SALVATION!
 
Love you!
Twiggy