• Lori Somerville

The king was attracted to Esther more than to any of the other women, and she won his favor and approval . . . So he set a royal crown on her head and made her queen.” Esther 2:17 (NIV)

God doesn’t just want to use your gifts. He wants to use your limitations, too. What? Yes, he has a plan for all of you. We have a phrase we like to use a lot - God can use your most broken places to heal someone else. There is nothing in you or about you that God can't use for His Kingdome! Take a look at Esther, for example. She had several big limitations that made her perfect for the role God wanted her to fulfill. She was an orphan adopted by Mordecai; she was a minority, a Jew living in a Persian country; and she was a single woman.

A single woman in a male-dominated society had zero rights. But God used all of these things to help her fulfill her destiny. Sometimes what looks like a disaster in your life is part of a much bigger plan. Esther could have just said, “If only I hadn’t been chosen . . . If only I had a better education . . . If only I was more like someone else.” A lot of people do that. They live their lives in resentment, always looking at people’s successes and saying, “Well it must be nice to be like them.” If you have that attitude, you will never fulfill God’s calling on your life. You must realize that the unpleasant obstacles in your life are often God-ordained opportunities to make a difference.

We develop this outlook when we compare our broken insides to someone else's outsides. That person who seems to have it all: successful career, good marriage, well-behaved children, perfect house, etc----you don't know what they have walked through to end up where they are today. You only see the outside stuff. And the truth is - It’s hard to see that when you’re in pain. Look at Job. He was the wealthiest man in the world, and then one day God allowed everything to be taken from him— his family, wealth, and health. And when Job started questioning God, God was silent. Job said, “I do not see him in the north, for he is hidden. I look to the south, but he is concealed. But he knows where I am going . . . Once he has made his decision, who can change his mind? Whatever he wants to do, he does. So he will do to me whatever he has planned. He controls my destiny” (Job 23:9-10, 13-14 NLT). We’re living in uncertain times, and you may not be able to figure everything out. But God knows what’s going on. The pleasures and pains, the opportunities and obstacles—God can use it all.

We'd love to partner with you to help you discover your healing and the plan that God has for using your pain and disappointment to bring healing to someone else. God's plan for your life includes it all - the wonderful gifts inside of you and the pain and despration you may be feeling right now. He never wastes a hurt. Invite God today to turn your pain and brokenness into someone else's healing balm.

  • Lori Somerville

I don't think many of us will be sad to see 2020 go and a new year full of promise arrive. Isn't that why we celebrate the new year after all? The new year arrives as a blank slate just waiting for us to fill it in with our lives - our moments, our memories, our laughter, our joy, our pain, our disappointment, our hope.

But before we shut the door on 2020 and leap into 2021 I have a question - what did you learn? I think 2020 taught all of us something. Some of the lessons were more painful than others but there were certainly opportunities to grow and to learn this year. One of the things I learned was how very much I need people. I need my community, my tribe, my family, my friends - I need you. Before 2020 I would have probably told you that for the most part I do okay by myself but when 2020 threw a pandemic into my world the reality of how alone alone is really struck home.

I found myself lonely. Almost overnight it seemed as though the whole world had gone crazy. My workplace emptied out as many people were sent home to work. My chuch closed and went online. It was great to have that online presence but after a few weeks I realized it just wasn't the same. Nothing can replace human interaction. Relationships. Friendships. Your Faith Family.

I found myself taking a good hard look at what I was doing. How I was spending my time. Did it really matter? Were my hours being spent doing the things that God had called me to do? Was I really making a difference? I re-discovered a passion for prayer. I have always prayed but God took me on a journey in 2020 that has re-ignited my prayer life. Instead of being a thing that we, as Christians, are supposed to do God has revealed it as THE THING. Every one of us is called to prayer. Our prayers unleash the power of God into our circumstances and the circucmstances of those around us. Our prayers can do anything that God can do - they can create, they can bring life and hope to the hopeless, they can change your church, your family, even your community.

I fell in love with God's Word all over again. I clung to my Bible like the lifeline that is is intended to be. It is what got me through the times of loneliness, of despair and hopelessness that I faced throughout the year. It filled me with hope, it gave me peace and it reminded me that I had a purpose.

As we begin our leap into a new year full of hope and promise, I plan to bring the lessons of 2020 into my new year because I believe God will continue to build on what He has started. As a matter of fact, the Bible promises that very thing. He will complete what He has started in me and in you too. If we will stand on His word and wield our prayers like the weapons He intended for them to be, I believe 2021 can be the year of His church. It's time to reclaim our rightful place as His army and begin to take new ground and re-take any ground that has been lost.

So what were your lessons in 2020? What is God speaking to you for 2021?

  • Lori Somerville

Have you ever wondered why so few of us see the Promises of God realized in our lives?

It’s one of the biggest promise killers out there

It literally pushes us from a position of faith to waivering.

It’s talked about in the Bible quite a bit………and it is summed up in this verse "Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks".

Luke 6:

45 A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.

Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks

If that is not a little check I don’t know what is

If your wondering what you’re thinking….just listen to yourself talk

We need to bring our self talk into alignment with what God is saying to us and over us.

We need to bring the confession of our mouths into alignment with the word of God

How do you speak to yourself?

Do you talk down to yourself?

What do you say to yourself about yourself?

Noone has more influence over you than you do

How your self talk goes is how your life will go

How many of you are saying this to yourself:

You are leader and not a follower…………

You are the head and not the tale………

You are holy and set apart……….

You are seated in heavenly places……….

You are a child of God…….

You are victorious in every area of your life…………..

God has not given you a spirit of fear……

God has given you a sound mind………..

My security is found in Christ……

I can be anything God wants me to be …….

I can do anything God wants me to do…….

Does that sound familiar?

If not, maybe we’ve discovered the problem.

How are you talking to yourself?

What are you saying

What are you calling yourself?

Do the words you use to you or about you sound like these or more like this?

Good things never happen to me

I always fail

I’m stupid, too short, too fat, not enough, a horrible parent……………

So which one are you speaking over you?

Let us hold fast to our confession of hope without wavering


There is too much wavering when it comes to our confession

For most of us good things have to happen to us in order for us to say good things about ourselves

We get a promotion

We make the honor roll

We lose weight

We gain weight

Fill in your blank

Whatever it is………….identify it right now.

What has to happen for you to say good things about yourself?

What is it wrapped up in?

Your performance?

Your spouse or significant other?

I can’t begin to tell you how important it is for us to get this.

You are never going to navigate well the storms of life if your confession relies on your circumstances.

Your confession must align itself with the truth of the word of God

Not with your past

Not with your experience

Not with your performance

Not with how someone else treats you

Not with your feelings

What is it that takes us from one moment being this powerful woman/man of God

And the next………………..doubting………………..but not just doubting………actually cursing ourselves with the words that we use?

Out of the condition of the heart the mouth speaks

When we speak negativity over ourselves we are spiritually killing ourselves

Will you hold unswervingly to the confessions of your mouth?

Temperature check – what is the condition of your confession?

What are you holding on to

Proverbs 18:21

The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.

In this modern age of social media we have forgotten this scripture

We don’t do a lot of teaching on this in the church today

But the reality is this: you frame your world with the words that you speak

Your confession can change the atmosphere of your heart

Your confession can change the atmosphere around you

Of your workplace

Of your school

Of your home

Of those around you

But most of us instead of pulling heaven down into our experience

We lower our expectations to the level of our experiences……….past and present

And we begin to talk like the world around us rather than elevating everyone around us to come into alignment with heaven

I am not talking about a name it and claim it kind of Christianity

I am talking about a faith filled kind of Christianity where you speak words full of God’s truth, full of the power of the Holy Spirit and you release them unto the world around you

23 Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. 24 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, 25 not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.

Our words should be spurring one another on towards love and good deeds.

Do your words do that?

Do you encourage?

Do you pull heaven down into the circumstances of the people around you……….with your words?

What are you speaking

Over your finances

Over your health

Over your destiny

Over your children

Over your marriage

Over your friendships

Over your ministry

Over the world around you

Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks

Just because you feel it doesn’t mean you have to say it

Just because you feel it doesn’t mean it is true

Your feelings change like the weather……………….God’s word does not

Stop making an idol out of your feelings

And start letting God be the Lord of our life

Repeat after me:

I am a leader and not a follower…………

I am the head and not the tale………

I am holy and set apart……….

I am seated in heavenly places……….

I am a child of God…….

I am destined for victory …

God has not given me a spirit of fear……

God has given me a sound mind………..

My security is in Christ Jesus ……

God wants to meet my every need………..

I can be anything God wants to be …….

I can do anything God wants me to do…….

I am victorious in Christ Jesus.

Does that feel good? Imagine how it would feel if you began to speak these words over yourself and over those around you? Every day.

Imagine the things our little church could do for Jesus?

We could make hell quake.