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All I can do sometimes to hold it together is just that…hold it together. My flesh is eating away at me and I tremble from my little dose of reality. My heart is broken, but I am allowing God to stitch it up. He is flooding me with His peace, even though each stitch feels like a hot knife. The soothing balm of the blood of Jesus is immediately applied as God mends my heart.

Psalm 147:3 (NIV) – He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.

armorI told someone yesterday that being on the battlefield is tough. I get knocked down and slapped around by the enemy on a consistent basis. I fall flat on my back on the cold, wet ground and all I can do is look up into the sky as a war rages around me. As soon as I stagger again to my feet, brush myself off, thank God for His protective armor, and pull my sword from my sheath, I’m down again. Here is the thing. There is nowhere on else on the planet I would rather be. I am a soldier in the army that is rising out of Jacob’s Well Ministries. I am proud to call this place my home. I am blessed to walk exhausted and blind through the smoke on the battlefield of what each day brings. I am grateful for the gifted and anointed people who fight beside me. The Holy Spirit resides here, the angelic army of the Living God is encamped here, and hope reigns in the hearts of the women who are fresh off their own battlefield, who have come here for mending. Nothing beats stepping over the threshold from a day of work to smell a home cooked meal wafting in waves of welcome from the kitchen. Everyone claps and cheers in greeting as each person walks through the door. This is a family. This is a hope for a generation that should have been lost. This is a legacy being left. Worship is impulsive and uninterrupted. Joy and laughter ring from every corner of the house. The hits keep coming at me, but all they do as serve as a reminder of the promises God gave me. If Satan comes against me so severely, what does he know about my Kingdom purpose that I don’t know that he pummels me this hard?

Deuteronomy 20:1-4 (NIV) – When you go to war against your enemies and see horses and chariots and an army greater than yours, do not be afraid of them, because the Lord your God, who brought you up out of Egypt, will be with you. 2 When you are about to go into battle, the priest shall come forward and address the army. 3 He shall say: “Hear, Israel: Today you are going into battle against your enemies. Do not be fainthearted or afraid; do not panic or be terrified by them. 4 For the Lord your God is the one who goes with you to fight for you against your enemies to give you victory.”

I came to Jacob’s Well broken seemingly beyond repair. I had been living on the streets addicted to anything and everything. Addiction breeds selfishness. I was lost to my own thinking which always landed me on another corner in another city. Even when clean, it was all about me and everyone else was to blame. After coming to Jacob’s Well Recovery Center for Women, a Christ centered addiction recovery center, a healing place, a safe haven for greatness, God moved in my life and I had a choice to make. I could either stay stuck in the darkness of my depraved mind, or I could expose it to the Light of Truth and Salvation. Learning the truth about who Julie Keene is was uncomfortable at best, but the relief that came in the process was amazingly bearable. I was afforded not just one, but two 6 month stays at this anointed work and worship program. I came back the second time because my unwillingness to expose the WHOLE truth the first time became evident in my walk in the world. This place is now my sanctuary.

action4Ruth  1:16 – Where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people and your God my God.

I see women transformed by the Love of Christ on a daily basis. I, myself, am still being changed by His grace. God is Love and Jacob’s Well is a perfect example of the love Jesus had for the people. Jesus walked with, talked to, and ministered to tax collectors, prostitutes, lepers, the poor, the fatherless, widows, and the throw aways of society. He loved the down trodden and He came to save the lost and to give hope to the them if they were willing to be transformed.

Psalm 51:12-13 – Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me. 13 Then I will teach transgressors your ways, so that sinners will turn back to you.

Susan Haynes Brogan says it best, “Jesus has two powers, the power to save and the power to transform. Everyone desires to be saved, but are you willing to undergo the hard process of transformation?” Transformation for me was the toughest part, but I thank God for the people of Jacob’s Well showing me the purpose behind the pain. I had to let go of a LOT, but he hardest thing I learned to let go of was MYSELF and my own selfish desires.

Romans 12:2 – Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

authority4Today, I am making a heartfelt plea. Jacob’s Well is being pushed by God onto a battlefield never before trekked. We are on a pioneering adventure and our goal is to snatch as many wounded souls from the fire and bring them into the healing hospital God is attempting to build. Jacob’s Well currently holds 30 women plus a small staff made up of former graduates, like myself. The Haynes family began this ministry and were called to do so out of their own brokenness and redemption. Their hearts desire is to bring Jacob’s Well right into the eye of a brewing cataclysmic social storm and open doors for entire families to be brought from the realms of this dying world and into the life sustaining mercy and grace of Christ. The hope is for generations to come. We are only days away from opening the doors to Damascus Road Recovery Center for Men and we need your prayers and support.

Exodus 20:5-6 (NIV) – You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me, 6 but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments.

They are preparing a place of refuge, a home where the face of addiction can be changed, where entire armies of families can be trained for the Kingdom battles that are to come, and where restoration can happen. So many people turn their heads to the addicted society and pay them no mind, but in doing so they are accepting the fact that addiction is killing our nation and the generation behind us is being left behind in foster homes and being written off only to grow up and do the exact same thing. Silence is acceptance. Don’t be silent any longer Your voice will ring loud and clear against this epidemic when you sow a seed today.

action3I am crying out from the depths of my soul to anyone reading this to be moved by the Spirit of God to donate to the #redefiningrecovery movement. This life given to us by God is not our own. It is to bring others into His loving arms and show them a new way to live. Your donation will SAVE LIVES, restore children to their parents, and all of them will be equally yoked under the blood stained banner of our Savior!

Please visit www.fundly.com/redefiningrecovery to learn more about this life sustaining ministry, it’s founders, it’s graduates, and how you, too, can change the world. God is calling YOU to this Kingdom purpose. Please don’t shy away. Also, you can visit us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/redefiningrecovery and our website www.jacobswellrecoverycenter.com for more information.  You can visit Damascus Road on Facebook and Jacob’s Well is also on Facebook!

Thank you for reading this, thank you for your willingness to be part of the Great Commission, and thank you for allowing hope to rise in the spirits of individuals, children, men, and women that we still have yet to meet. Like this post, share it with as many people as you can, and start a chain that cannot be broken by the enemy! Be the tie that binds!

action1Isaiah 61

The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me,
because the Lord has anointed me
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim freedom for the captives
and release from darkness for the prisoners,
2 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor
and the day of vengeance of our God,
to comfort all who mourn,
3 and provide for those who grieve in Zion—
to bestow on them a crown of beauty
instead of ashes,
the oil of joy
instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise

instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
a planting of the Lord
for the display of his splendor.

4 They will rebuild the ancient ruins
and restore the places long devastated;
they will renew the ruined cities
that have been devastated for generations.
5 Strangers will shepherd your flocks;
foreigners will work your fields and vineyards.
6 And you will be called priests of the Lord,
you will be named ministers of our God.
You will feed on the wealth of nations,
and in their riches you will boast.

7 Instead of your shame
you will receive a double portion,
and instead of disgrace
you will rejoice in your inheritance.
And so you will inherit a double portion in your land,
and everlasting joy will be yours.

8 “For I, the Lord, love justice;
I hate robbery and wrongdoing.
In my faithfulness I will reward my people
and make an everlasting covenant with them.
9 Their descendants will be known among the nations
and their offspring among the peoples.
All who see them will acknowledge
that they are a people the Lord has blessed.”

10 I delight greatly in the Lord;
my soul rejoices in my God.
For he has clothed me with garments of salvation
and arrayed me in a robe of his righteousness,
as a bridegroom adorns his head like a priest,
and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.
11 For as the soil makes the sprout come up
and a garden causes seeds to grow,
so the Sovereign Lord will make righteousness
and praise spring up before all nations.