Friday, June 17, 2016

Ways of Royalty - Identifying the Orphan Spirit - Day 16

Day 16 - Ways of Royalty

Read 1 John 3:1

Our Father God knows us intimately – but He longs for us to know Him as well. Many people have asked how to know when God is speaking to them. This question always brings to mind an illustration we have done with our youth group.

Consider this – suppose you are in a large room of people. Everyone is talking and you are blindfolded. You are told to go find your dad. You listen to the noise and soon you hear your name called. You immediately dismiss it, because you know that wasn’t your father. Soon everyone in the room is saying your name, but there’s that one voice – that tone you recognize so well... your dad.

For some of us, the sound of his voice brings discomfort due to a painful childhood. For others, hearing your dad call your name evokes love and anticipation. Earthly fathers are often how we envision our Heavenly Father – and that can be helpful, but it isn’t always accurate.

Our Abba Father is a good Father. Satan tries to distort our view of Him – from day one he had Eve doubting God’s character. If he did that to Eve, we can know and expect that he will do that to us as well.

When a child is adopted, it’s important for the parent and child to spend time together to build a bond that cannot be broken. Our adopted Father is always ready to spend time with you and I – it is vitally important for us to take time with Him. He’s always with you – be aware of His presence and soon you will recognize His voice – no matter how many other things are calling out for your attention.

Ask yourself:

 Do I acknowledge that I have been adopted in the Kingdom of God?

 Do I live like I am a child of the King?

 What area do I struggle in the most?

 How do I plan to change me?

We’ve studied many aspects of the Orphan Spirit and hopefully we have reached a place where we can acknowledge who we are in Christ.

Adopted. Forgiven. Loved. Free.

Do you belong?

Yes, you do. We all have a unique role within the Kingdom. Knowing this, may we choose to love one another well as we celebrate the new life we now enjoy as sons and daughters of the King.

Thank you for joining me on this 16 day journey of Identifying the Orphan Spirit.  I'd love to hear from you.  You can comment below or email me at

God bless! 

For more in-depth study, I recommend reading All the King's Orphans and the correlating Study Guide.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Absalom and Jezebel - Identifying the Orphan Spirit - Day 15

Day 15 - Spiritual Fathers and Mothers and a look at Absalom and Jezebel

Our pastors, elders and other church leaders are our spiritual fathers and mothers – yet they are not immune to the Orphan Spirit. The Orphan Spirit is one who desires status and notoriety, and for that reason our church leaders are ones who struggle to lead and serve for the proper reasons.

Pastors need to recognize that part of their calling is to lead the people in their churches, yet at the same time they are there to serve. Unfortunately, many have taken on the role of pastor in an effort to feed their ego. This is completely contradictory to the calling of a pastor. If a church leader looks at his flock as a people who can be used, manipulated and controlled for his own benefit, he has sorely misunderstood his function.

Men and women who have been called to lead the body of Christ must recognize the importance of leading like Jesus. He is the ultimate example in servant leadership.

Imagine a church with leaders who call out the potential in their congregation. Who recognize talents and abilities and provide opportunities to use that gifting. Pastors and leaders must always be aware of the tendency within the Orphan Spirit to compare, control and minimize others. This can make or break a ministry.


Consider the congregation whose pastor refuses to share the load of ministry with his or her flock. The deep-seated need to control has the pastor micro-managing every aspect of church life. If someone steps up with the ability to do something well, the pastor, Sunday School teacher, worship leader, elder… you fill in the blank, may find himself comparing his own ability to that person. If the Orphan Spirit mentality takes over, the lay member is refused the opportunity to use his gifting – or is sent in a different direction.

Done over and over again, the pastor (and other leaders) ends up exhausted, discouraged and lonely with a congregation full of frustrated, unfulfilled, disengaged people.

Christ’s example on earth teaches us as leaders the importance of laying down our lives for others. As parents, we are called to set aside our own wants and preferences time and again as we raise our children - and we do it out of a love and desire to see them succeed in life. In the same way, pastors and leaders must discover ways to open doors of opportunity for their congregation.

Less of me – more of you.

Our minds cannot even begin to imagine what all could happen in the Kingdom when all sons and daughters begin to celebrate and promote one another.

At the same time, lay members have a responsibility in being willing to be lead. Both sides have an obligation to serve.

If competition must exist, let’s create a culture of competition where sons and daughters attempt to out-serve, out-love and out-promote one another. Wouldn’t that be fun?

But prepare yourself – love like this tends to draw a crowd.

Ask yourself:

 How independent am I?

 Am I willing to accept guidance in my life?

 How much do I value and respect my Pastor?

 Am I willing to speak or listen to negativity about my church leadership?

 Do I promote division in my church?

 Do I pray for my Pastor?

(For Pastors and Leaders) Ask yourself:

 Do I lead as an Orphan Spirit?

 As a leader, am I motivated by love or by fear?

 What gives me the most joy in the role I carry?

 Am I a servant-leader? Am I willing to serve or are some jobs in the church “beneath” me?

 How am I promoting members of my congregation?

 Do I fear losing my position? How is this affecting my ability to lead?

 Do I control, manipulate or minimize those I lead?

 How can I be a better leader?

The stories of Absalom and Jezebel are intriguing and both the Absalom and Jezebel spirits or mindsets can be found in our modern day churches. Their stories provide insight into how the Enemy uses people within the Kingdom to destroy the Kingdom. Their target is leadership, but they divide and conquer all that they can along the way.

Take time to study their individual stories and discover how to watch for these divisive spirits inside the Kingdom.  Both the book and study guide offer more in-depth information.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Jonah and Esther - Identifying the Orphan Spirit - Day 14

Day 14 - The Orphan Spirit, Jonah and Esther

Read Romans 12:2

We’ve taken an in-depth look at some of the root issues found within the Orphan Spirit. While it is incredibly easy to identify these characteristics in the lives of others, finger pointing is not where personal freedom is discovered. Each of us can only experience the joy of living as a spiritual son or daughter within the Kingdom of God by having a transformation within our own mind.

The pattern you once knew was the lifestyle of fatherlessness, but if you have been adopted into the Kingdom, your orphan life is in the past. Now begins the process of transforming your thought patterns from the Orphan Spirit to that of a spiritual son or daughter.

What is truth? 

Who are you? 

Do you belong?

The truth is that the price has already been paid for you to take your place in the Kingdom of God as His child. So do you belong?  Yes!  You do!  

How much more would God have to do to convince you that He wants you? Was the price He paid (His Son’s death) not enough?

Jonah and Esther were two Old Testament characters who were called to do great things. Both dealt with fear. Both spent time in prayer and both saw God’s hand move miraculously – yet their attitudes were vastly different.

While considering the lives of Jonah and Esther, write out several differences you see in which they approached their calling.  

Focus on how you too can live with the mindset of a King's son or daughter.  It changes everything!