The promise stuck out the most and it encouraged my heart in a huge way. I needed hope and affirmation and that is exactly what it was, but I couldn't help noticing the context: wisdom and kindness.
I started pondering this. I repeatedly caught myself before posting passive-agressive stuff on facebook, about various things that hurt my heart. Out of respect for myself and others and especially this word. (Yes, I am back on facebook.)
On a somewhat related note, I have gotten the word, "You are a good friend," three times. The last time was from Jim Durkin, who had just explained to me that when he just gives words, there's not much umph but that he has specifically been called to prophesy to set people in their correct position in church and when he does that which is what God has given him to do, there's a different level of authority so he doesn't do the other much or at all anymore. I had asked about that because I had just seen him do with tremendous authority that which he is called by God to do. So I thought it was kindof odd God gave him that word for me--again.
Of course, I am a good friend, and I haven't always felt like others saw that, but I couldn't shake the idea that there must be a deeper meaning here.
Sometime in there, I felt impressed to reread the book I had read when I first really got interested in prophecy. It had been so helpful then and I felt like I needed some clarity. In fact, I needed to tie the experiences of my past life with God together with my present life with him so I could claim the treasures from my past. So I took it along to read on the airplane. On my longest flight, I was crying over its pages.
A certain part relates directly to me and the friend business, as well as to the ask, seek, knock verse, which is also significant to me. Luke 11:5-13
And He said to them, “Which of you shall have a friend, and go to him at midnight and say to him, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves; for a friend of mine has come to me on his journey, and I have nothing to set before him’; and he will answer from within and say, ‘Do not trouble me; the door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot rise and give to you’? I say to you, though he will not rise and give to him because he is his friend, yet because of his persistence he will rise and give him as many as he needs. “So I say to you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. If a son asks for bread from any father among you, will he give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent instead of a fish? Or if he asks for an egg, will he offer him a scorpion? If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him!
There's a lot to unpack here, but notice it's a story about friends and bread. This makes prophecy simple enough even I can understand it. I'm friends with God, and one of my friends comes to visit and is hungry. I don't have what it takes, so I bang on God's door till he gives me something to give my friend. He doesn't give demonic stuff, so I don't need to be afraid. He's really honored by persistence. (Thank you You May All Prophesy author Scott Thompson for these concepts).
Back to kindness. I caught myself making an unkind remark sometime soon after. I felt it in the air, the negative impact on the atmosphere I was trying to create. "Whoops! There went some of my spiritual authority," I thought.
I wonder what would happen to my understanding of and ability to prophecy if I kept a high standard of kindness? I have a hunch that it would have unexpectedly supernatural results.