Kay Horner's Posts (7)

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Deeply Rooted in the Shepherd's Love

Regardless of how we look on the outside, the size and scope of our ministry or the crowds of people surrounding us, each of us may struggle at some point in life with damaged love receptors. Our archenemy Satan is keenly aware that if he can distance us from the love of God, we will be unsuccessful at loving ourselves or others, causing us to lose heart. No doubt, that's why Paul prayed for the Ephesian believers:

When I think of all this, I fall to my knees and pray to the Father, the Creator of everything in heaven and on earth. I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit. Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God's love and keep you strong. And may you have the power to understand, as all God's people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God (Eph. 3:14–19, NLT).

We have the potential to be dynamic and effective servants in the kingdom of God. He longs to move us from a place of isolation and loneliness to experience the fullness of life and power found only through being deeply rooted in His forever love.

God's love for us is not some fleeting infatuation that's here today and gone tomorrow. He allowed His Son to be mocked, ridiculed, slapped in the face, spit upon, cruelly beaten, stripped bare and crucified on a cross to purchase His treasured children. As Christ was preparing to wash the disciples' feet just before He went to the cross for them, the beloved disciple John recorded for us, "Having loved his own who were in the world, he now showed them the full extent of his love" (John 13:1, NIV). God Incarnate, Immanuel—God with us—not only stooped to wash our feet but died to atone for our sins.

It all sounds too arrogant and amazing to believe that Abba Father would surrender heaven's best for earth's worst, but what is the alternative. We certainly couldn't imagine that it was our goodness rather than His grace or our merit rather than His mercy! Believing in His great love for us is not nearly as arrogant as believing anything else.

In The Message, Eugene Petersen paraphrases the last half of 2 Timothy 1:9 in this way: "We had nothing to do with it. It was all his idea, a gift prepared for us in Jesus long before we knew anything about it."

What transformational power we will experience if we not only embrace but daily become more deeply rooted in and captivated by this multi-dimensional love!

The secret to fulfilling our destiny and growing to spiritual maturity is to be more deeply rooted in the soil of the unknowable, unsearchable love of God. Comprehending Christ's love does not come naturally but supernaturally. It is an unending process because it is unknowable. As our capacity to receive and share His love grows, He keeps filling us again and again.

One of our greatest hindrances is defective receiving mechanisms that have become damaged or totally dysfunctional.

  • You may have grown up in a home where love was nonexistent or rarely if ever expressed.
  • You may have known only anger and abuse before coming to Christ.
  • Your love receptors may have been damaged by bias and prejudice, or cruelty and isolation.
  • Perhaps you struggle with the pain of loss, bitter disappointment and broken relationships, resulting in battered hearts.
  • Many may bear biological father/mother wounds or suffer from spiritual lesions of the heart that were caused by religious/church leaders.
  • Or you may have simply found yourself in a dry, barren place for so long; you wouldn't recognize a God embrace if it knocked you off your feet.

The extravagant, demonstrative love of God defies description and has the power to expand wide enough to draw you into His embrace. It is long enough to reach you no matter how far you may run and try to hide. Christ came down from the highest heavens to reach into the depths of your soul and repair every damaged receptor cell of your heart.

God's love is not linear or limited but voluminous and overflowing. Holy Spirit does not want you to experience a temporary emotional touch, but He desires for you to develop a deep root system that goes down into the soil of God's Word and allows you to be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God!

How full is that? It's incomprehensible! His love is not a stagnant pond or even a flowing river. Christ's love is a limitless spring of living water that flows from the throne of God. Throughout eternity, we'll never fully know, nor will we ever exhaust the immensity of His love.

The prophet Isaiah, prophesying of Christ, said He would heal, liberate, comfort, beautify, bring joy and clothe us in praise, so we "might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorified" (see Isa. 61:1–4 and Luke 4:18–19).

The world's tallest tree is the California redwood, which can easily grow to a height of 300 feet. Redwood tree roots are very shallow, often only five or six feet deep. Yet they compensate for it in width, sometimes extending up to 100 feet from the trunk. They thrive in thick groves, where the roots can intertwine and even fuse together. That is part of our strength in the kingdom of God as we love and support one another, but we can't survive on this love alone. In fact, our greatest strength is born in God's deeper love for us and our reciprocal love for Him.

There is another tree that grows in South Africa's dry, desert environment which stands 20 to 30 feet tall, but its root system is at least six times that long. The roots can reach as far down as 223 feet, making them the deepest known roots in the world. They are powerhouses at sucking up water and nutrients. It is also nicknamed the "tree of life" because nearly every part of it is useful to humans and animals. The name of this impressive tree is the shepherd's tree!

Allow the Holy Spirit to deeply root you in the Shepherd's love so that you might extend His love and support to others all around you—inside and outside the church walls!

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From Grumbling to Glory

9651036659?profile=original“. . . I will bless the LORD at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth” (Psalm 34:1 NASB)

Why do you suppose we most often refer to David as the “psalmist”? It’s true 73 of the “songs” are attributed to him, but that’s less than half. Maybe we consider him the author of Psalms because we identify with his personal challenges and triumphs. In fact, some psalms attributed to David were written while he was in the pit of difficulty, following a victory over adversity, or a combination of both.

How could the shepherd king declare the Lord’s praise would continually be in his mouth when facing a giant, fleeing for his life from an angry king, or stuck with a bunch of disgruntled soldiers in a pit?

Although he had little, if any, experience on the battlefield, David had spent quite a bit of time in the arena of prayer, praise, and worship. He had developed some powerful faith-filled strategies while tending his father’s sheep. He might not have known much about Goliath, but he was well-acquainted with the living LORD God of heaven and earth.

Interestingly, of all the different “types” of psalms, the most numerous are laments—65 or 67, depending on who is doing the counting. Many lament psalms begin in desolation but end in delight. While optimism can be found in the end, pessimism and despair are aired forcefully and unashamedly. That’s good news because we need to recognize God is not threatened, intimidated, or angered by us voicing our complaints and expressing our grief. Yet, we face our greatest difficulties when we allow the giants of adversity and despair to dominate our lives in such a way that they rob us of our thanksgiving, so all we do is lament!

True victory comes when we move from despair to delight, from grumbling to glory, and from lament to thanksgiving!

One quick reminder, David knocked the giant, attempting to steal Israel’s praise, face down to the ground by slinging a stone into his forehead. The frontal lobe of the brain is essentially the “control panel” of our personality and ability to communicate. David’s stone hit the very source of defiance against God and His people. It was mighty difficult for Goliath to shout lies with a mouth full of sandy dirt!

Try throwing a few “thanksgiving” stones at your giants of despair and fear by glorifying and praising God for His goodness, mercy, and grace in your life!

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Seven Words to Remember

As our attention is drawn this month to the passion of the Christ, I’ve been reflecting on our Savior’s final words spoken from the cross. By all accounts, Jesus didn’t do a lot of talking. He was almost silent during those painful hours as He hung suspended between earth and heaven. These significant “Seven Last Words,” as they’ve come to be identified, provide a window into Jesus’ soul.

The cruel torture of crucifixion would have virtually pressed the very life’s breath out of Jesus’ lungs, requiring Him to push on his feet, straighten His legs, and relieve the weight of His body that paralyzed the pectoral muscles to utter these words. Christ’s important, final expressions ultimately reveal not only His humanity and incredible determination, but also His extravagant, demonstrative love for us and His intimate relationship with the Father.

We tend to pay close attention to the words spoken by a dying loved one and hold them as treasured memories. How well do we remember and treasure the deeper meaning of these words of our Savior?

“Father, forgive them, they know not what they do” (Luke 23:34)Jesus knew what it meant to be wounded in the house of His friends—the deepest hurt you can experience (Zechariah 13:6). Yet, He prioritized His forgiveness of others, which preceded His petitions as our Intercessor, who would be eternally at the right hand of the Father in heaven (cf., Matthew 6:14, 15).

“This day you will be with me in Paradise” (Luke 23:43)—Not only did Christ demonstrate love and forgiveness toward His accusers, He interacted in a personal, relational way with the criminal who was hanging on a nearby cross. Regardless of the intensity of the raw agony He was enduring, our loving Lord demonstrated compassion and care for the one who was being punished justly when asked, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom” (Luke 23:42). Paul described this amazing concept of being with Christ in heavenly places as a present reality for believers: “But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus” (Ephesians 2:4–6).

“Woman, behold your son . . . behold your mother” (John 19:26, 27)—In His final moments, Christ’s enduring love for those nearest Him was not diminished. Staring death in the face, He spoke of the continued care for His mother and the reciprocal parental affection that the beloved disciple would enjoy. How easily we become absorbed in our day-to-day lives and especially in our times of difficulty. Our intentions are good. We want to minister to the needs of others, especially the family of God or household of faith, but . . . May God help us to remember not only these words, but the relational principle behind them

“My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?” (Mark 15:34; Matthew 27:46 — Jesus was one with the Father and the Word made flesh, who came and lived among us (John 1:14). Yet, to reconcile fallen humanity to God, He experienced this time of separation from deep, intimate fellowship with His Father. What great punishment this must have been to be wounded, bruised, and abandoned for us as the guilt of our sins was laid upon Him (Isaiah 53:4–6).

“I thirst” (John 19:28)—Not only did the living Word long for fellowship, but the One who offered living water to an ostracized woman by a well (John 4:14) cried out in thirst. Surely, the Father hears His children, who are supposed to embody springs of salvation and rivers of everlasting water flowing from our bellies, when we exclaim, “You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek you; I thirst for you, my whole being longs for you, in a dry and parched land where there is no water” (Psalm 63:1).

“It is finished” (John 19:30)—In those final moments at the very point of death when the one being crucified would normally not have the strength to cry anything aloud, Christ’s cry of victory still resounds today. He fulfilled what was required to “save completely those who come to God through Him because He always lives to intercede for them” (Hebrews 7:25).

“Into your hands I commit my spirit” (Luke 23:46)—Just as Christ was able to release Himself into the Father’s hands, Holy Spirit empowers us to completely abandon ourselves into the hands of a loving God. Although it may sound paradoxical, the reason we can endure the honor of suffering unashamedly for Christ’s sake is because we have the assurance that He “abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel” (2 Timothy 1:10). We can say with Paul, “for I know whom I have believed and I am convinced that He is able to guard what I have entrusted to Him until that day” (2 Timothy 1:12).

Perhaps as we reflect upon our “loved One’s” dying words, we might benefit from looking through the lens of Galatians 2:20—“I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.”

Sharing in the experience of the cross with Christ is one of the highest and deepest dimensions of intimacy we can know with the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Bob Sorge so vividly describes it this way, “The cross’s shadow is the saint’s home.” For, we must always remember this is not a one-time accomplishment, but rather an ongoing process as we join with the apostle Paul and “die daily” (1 Corinthians 15:31).

Consequently, the profound death that comes through being crucified with Christ brings unparalleled affection from our loving, heavenly Father and transformational resurrection hope. “For if we have been united together in the likeness of His death, certainly we also shall be in the likeness of His resurrection” (Romans 6:5).

These are some powerful words to remember!

Kay Horner, Executive Director, The Helper Connection

 Tags: CrossEasterForgivenessGospelResurrection

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A Christ Awakening in America

The publisher of Dr. Herbert Lockyer’s book, All the Prayers of the Bible, suggests there are no fewer 650 prayers in Scripture with 450 recorded answers. Can you imagine if all of our prayers were recorded and later published for the world to read? I shudder at the thought!

We can be relatively sure that all of the prayers of great men and women in the Bible were not documented for posterity, but our heavenly Father obviously felt some were significant enough to be available throughout time and eternity. The prayer of Moses, recorded in Exodus 33, has always been very intriguing and inspiring for me.

Less than 40 days had passed since the Israelites pledged to keep the Law of God, given them at Mount Sinai (Exodus 24:3). They had already broken the first two commandments with their worship of the golden calf. Moses interceded for forgiveness, and God relented from the threat of extermination. However, this friend of Yahweh would not be content until God was intimately present in his own life and in the lives of the people God had called him to lead.

In his face-to-face dialogue, Moses wisely used the Lord’s answers to become a platform for each succeeding request until he boldly asked:

“I pray You, show me Your glory!” (Exodus 33:18).

This called and anointed leader was desperate for a sign of God’s favor. After all, who wouldn’t want to see God’s glory? I suppose it depends on what happens when the heavy, weighty presence of God is manifested among us! The prophet Isaiah found himself keenly aware of his own depravity, humbling himself in repentance, and pleading for cleansing.

God knew what Moses really needed was the assurance of his heavenly Father’s goodness and mercy. All of a sudden, this was more important to him than any Promised Land he had ever imagined. Following his encounter with the Lord God, merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abundant in loving-kindness and truth (Exodus 34:6), Moses emerged a changed man. His solitude and personal worship led to an ability to mediate the very nature and presence of God to the people.

To do God’s work and miss God’s presence
is the wrong way to go.

To experience God’s presence and not fulfill His plan for your life
is the wrong place to stop.

The goodness of the Lord is what leads people to repentance (Romans 2:4). He is the One who came to seek and to save those who are doomed for destruction. We might like to stay in this place near the Lord, hidden by His hand in the cleft of the rock, but He calls us to take up the mantle of ministry He has given us and become the visible evidence of His goodness to a hurting and broken world. Could the Holy Spirit be calling us to become part of the answer to our own prayers for a restoration of godliness in America?

We challenge you to take a few moments to write a personal commitment to consistently seek the Lord for a Christ awakening in America and to spend time during 2014 focusing on the Twenty Indicators of Awakening during your individual and group prayer gatherings. Please know as a partner with the Awakening America Alliance, you are in our thoughts and prayers, too.

During 2014, I commit to seek the Lord__________________

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Upstream Generators

We live in an area blessed with beautiful, clear rivers and streams. This is especially appealing to my husband, who loves trout fishing. Of course, he knows to always check the Tennessee Valley Authority website for the water generation schedule before making his plans. You see, if the dams upstream are generating power, it will impact the water levels and fishing conditions downstream.

The Awakening America Alliance and Cry Out America prayer teams recognize a similar principle occurring in our nation today. Downstream in America, we find the symptoms of church irrelevance, fragmented relationships, cultural decay, and moral decline. However, wisdom tells us that if we will examine and address what those in authority are generating upstream, we can make a real impact on the pollution levels and fishing conditions downstream.

Many have a passion to embrace the authority given to fulfill the Great Commission:

Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age” (Matthew 28:18–20).

However, our prayer is that we also will not forget earlier in the Gospel Christ first revealed the Great Commandment:

Jesus replied: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself’ (Matthew 22:37–39).

The Alliance proposes that if Christ-followers and those empowered with heavenly authority demonstrate a Great Commandment lifestyle, we can have hope of cleaner streams producing greater success as fishers of men.

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Knowing the Christ of Christmas

Having examined the trends in our government, judicial system, the Church, and the culture as a whole, we must confess that we have come to the end of ourselves and are in desperate need of a Christ awakening in the nation. The Awakening America Alliance considers catastrophic a future without the Spirit’s extraordinary intervention. We have committed ourselves to the prescriptions and promises of 2 Chronicles 7:14 and are calling upon every ministry, church, and institution within our influence to join us in humbling ourselves before God, seeking His face, and turning from our present way of life.

We must recognize knowing about Christ and walking in an empowering, personal relationship with the Christ of Christmas are very different. What might a Christ awakening look like if we examine the incarnation narrative?

  • The shepherds were informed of the Savior by an angel and a great company of heavenly hosts proclaiming, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom His favor rests” (Luke 2:14). They knew about Christ.
  • They decided to go see this thing that had happened, which the Lord had told them about. They hurried to Bethlehem where they found Mary, Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in a manager. They were in the presence of Christ.
  • This encounter caused the shepherds to spread the word about the child in such a way “all who heard it were amazed” (Luke 2:18). They not only had a conversation about Christ, but they had conversation with God, glorifying and praising Him for all they had heard and seen.
  • The Holy Spirit gave divine revelation about Christ to Simeon, who took Christ in His arms, praised God, and prophesied over the Messiah to His parents. Anna the prophetess, who lived a life of worship, fasting, and prayer, also “gave thanks to God and spoke about the child to all who were looking forward to the redemption of Jerusalem” (Luke 2:38). They embraced Christ and His mission of redemption.
  • Joseph and Mary lived a daily life with Christ, observed as He astonished the religious teachers, and treasured the wonder of it all in their hearts. They had a consistent relationship with Christ.
  • However, not until Mary and others like the beloved disciple John knelt at the foot of Christ’s cross, spent time in the Upper Room, and were empowered by the Holy Spirit did they truly know and experience the Christ of Christmas in the fullness of the Spirit.

Being engaged in a natural, ongoing relationship with Christ involves more than knowledge of His incarnation, enjoyment of His presence at Christmas Eve mass, or even public prayers prayed at the New Year’s Eve prayer meeting. We pray that you will be in consistent, Spirit-empowered communion with Him on a daily basis in the coming year as we CRY OUT to God for a fresh awareness of Christ in America. 

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"Nothing could be more urgent than for God's people to come together and pray for our nation and our world. Our only hope is to turn to the Lord Jesus Christ in repentance and faith and to seek to obey Him in every area of our lives, as individuals and also as a nation...” – Billy Graham


We need to examine our hearts before leading our communities, churches, and families in prayers of repentance. We need to lay aside the sins that weigh us down. Sins such as:



These Seven Deadly Sins were first recognized as a catalog of worldly evils compiled from early Christian sources by a scholar named Evagrius Ponticus. In 590 AD, Pope Gregory the Great re-examined Evagrius and declared seven sins deadly to body and soul. They are still deadly today. The fundamental problems faced by the United States can be traced back to these seven sins.


To help you increase awareness and target your prayers, World Impact with Billy Wilson has prepared seven short videos. These videos were recently featured at the America for Jesus rally in Philadelphia where thousands gathered at Independence Hall to pray for our Nation. They can help you focus your prayers too.


Videos can be viewed at www.worldimpact.tv or downloaded and used in your home or church with your “thank you” donation.

 Visit World Impact today.


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