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On the morning of August 9, 2013 I (Jolene) was having my daily quiet time. Everyday I read my year through the Bible and many days the Lord highlights scriptures that He wants me to concentrate on. On this day the scripture was Ezra 8:21- 9:15. I also felt a quickening that 8-21 to 9-15 were corresponding dates to be watchful over.
“There by the Ahava Canal, I proclaimed a fast, so that we might humble ourselves before our God and ask him for a safe journey for us and our children, with all our possessions” (Ezra 8:21).
Fasting for a Safe Journey
There were several things illuminated to me in this passage. I will write about some of the other points in days to come but today I want to concentrate on the journey set before us. It became apparent to me that we as the body of Christ were about to go on a journey—one many of us do not even know we are going on. There is a possibility for this journey to be unsafe for us, our children and for our belongings.
Something about this trip has the potential to put us in peril. God wants our journey to be safe—but as in Ezra’s day, prayer and fasting is necessary to secure our safety.
Make Sure You Know Jesus—Tsunami Dream
I am paying close attention to this warning because it fits in with much the Lord has been sharing with me lately. I have for many years had warning dreams about an impending storm cloud, with a tsunami wave right behind it. This storm cloud is very dark and ominous.
Always in these dreams I am looking out over a horizon and I see the coming storm and feel compelled to warn others that a storm is approaching. But the most recent dream I had in this series was quite alarming.
I was with Jon and we were trying to cross over a small hill. At the top of the hill was a country road with a metal guard rail on the other side. When I reached the top of the hill, I turned around to make sure my mother was following me. As I went to cross the road I looked over the guardrail and was surprised to see a giant tsunami wave was right on the other side of the guardrail. It shocked me because it had formed so quickly. In a panic I started to scream to my mother…MAKE SURE YOU KNOW JESUS….MOM, MAKE SURE YOU KNOW JESUS!
I woke up from this dream in sheer panic, and was crying because the dream was so real and so imminent. The phrase that I was screaming out was not so much about being “saved” as much as it was about really knowing Jesus. Knowing how to He works and what authority you have in Him. Knowing how to operate in Kingdom authority for safety and for guidance when the wave hits. Knowing His heart for you in the process.
The sense I had was that times were coming and now are upon us that a casual knowing of Jesus will not suffice. When I have had these dreams in the past I have always had time to prepare for the wave, and warn others. This time the wave seemed to be upon us, with no time left.
Ezra’s Line in the Sand
So suffice it to say that when I received the Ezra 8:21 passage during my quiet time, I began to pay very close attention. Ezra 8:21 speaks about actually proclaiming or declaring the fast. And the fast that we are declaring right now is really about being given the privilege to fast for safety in advance of the journey. To set our hearts on God, because the next verse states:
“…The gracious hand of our God is on everyone who looks to Him, but His great anger is against all who forsake Him. So we fasted and petitioned our God about this, and He answered our prayer” (Ezra 8:22).
The Lord is drawing a line in the sand between those who look to Him and those who forsake Him. We are out of time. Man-made guard rails will not protect us from what is coming. We are petitioning now for the gracious hand of God, knowing Jesus is the only answer.
Jon and I hope this prophetic understanding gives some context to this 21 day “Line in the Sand” project. We all are definitely being called to fast and pray now for a safe journey through storms just ahead. Maybe that is a reason many others have also felt led to call for 21 day fasts at this time. Something is almost upon us.
At the same time, God wants to bring His body on a safe journey through the peril. Ezra’s journey brought him from Babylon to Jerusalem and the Promised Land. Lets fast and pray now for safe passage on this same progression! And lets remember 8-21 through 9-15 as a really important time to watch and pray.