Destiny


Easter – 2018

There have been times in my life when I’ve felt like things weren’t turning out as I’d planned. Hope and dreams that I’d had seemed to have faded, and it was a big temptation to give way to negative feelings and questions. But, I’ve learned over the years that because the risen Jesus lives in me, I can face the challenges of life in His power and authority, and know His victory. The enemy no longer has permission to keep me in the darkness of negative feelings or thoughts, because the light of the truth of God’s word has set me free. I know that God wants all the hopes and dreams He’s given to me to be fulfilled. He wants me to live in the abundant life that Jesus came to give me, and as I walk along the path that He has set before me I will.

During this Easter time I have been looking again at the life of Mary Magdalene, mentioned in the verse below, and have been encouraged a new from her example.

“Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the entrance.” John 20:1

Have you ever felt like you were walking in the dark? Going somewhere you didn’t really want to go. Doing something you really didn’t want to do. Life hadn’t turned out quite like you had planned or hoped. And, now you feel like your hopes and dreams have died and lie buried in a tomb. You are uncertain about what is going on, and wonder what will happen next. If so, you are not alone, and the good news is that you don’t have to stay that way because Jesus has risen and has come to give you life, and life more abundantly!

I love the examples of women from the Bible. Women, like us, whose lives were touched with both joy and sadness. Women, who faced and overcame incredible obstacles and challenges, as they put their trust in God. Women who were an influence for good to those around them, and the God whom they loved and served, is just as real for us now as we walk out our daily lives.

Imagine Mary, on that first Easter morning walking along with the other women, in the dark, getting closer and closer to the tomb. How her thoughts must have been reeling from the shock of seeing Jesus crucified, pronounced dead and then laid in a tomb. Not only did the darkness of the day surround her, but the darkness of her overwhelming grief engulfed her, and yet … she continued walking.

In her mind the reality of the present situation, had overshadowed the reality of the truth of God’s word. Not expecting Jesus to have risen from the dead, like He said He would, she and the others wondered how they would move the stone from the entrance. They were carrying spices. Things associated with death, so that they could honour the dead according to the custom of the day. Stricken with grief, yet Mary continued walking.

As the natural light of the new day dawned, still in her own personal darkness, she may have thought back to the time when she’d had a personal encounter with Jesus and was set free. Remembering how He had restored, forgiven and welcomed her into God’s family. How she’d had the privilege, together with the other women, of travelling with Him, listening to Him teach, seeing first hand the amazing miracles He performed, and counting it a privilege to be able to contribute towards the needs of their group. The future had looked bright and promising then.

But, now in her own human understanding, this seemed like the end of all that. Jesus had died. Hope had died. Darkness had descended upon her. There was no joy and warmth in her heart that morning as she walked towards His tomb. And yet, despite the darkness, despite her feelings, despite the obstacles before her, she continued walking on! Walking on towards Jesus. I wonder how we would we have felt, and what would we have done? Would we have continued walking? In the darkness? Sometimes when we face our “tomb” situations, it feels like we’re facing them in the darkness. It’s tempting to turn around and find an alternative path. It’s tempting to want to give up altogether, not believing that things could change.

But, what did Mary do? She didn’t back away, but faced her problems while immersed in the darkness of them. She arrived at the tomb to find that the stone had been rolled away. God’s supernatural power had preceded her. Jesus was no longer there. No longer in the place of death and decay, but alive, victorious over sin and death. She saw Him. But, at first she didn’t recognise Him. Then, He called her by name. Instantly, she saw Him in all His resurrected glory, and heard His words speaking life. What a difference now! The darkness had been dispelled, hope had been restored, joy and peace filled her heart. The tomb, the place of death and decay had now become the place of life, resurrected life. The place where God’s awesome power and plan was revealed as Jesus triumphed over death and sin, defeated satan, and became the source of the greatest victory of all time.

Mary, in her own understanding had thought the tomb was the end, but in reality it was the beginning. When we don’t understand God’s truth we look at our circumstances and see our “tomb” as a place of death. But, whatever your “tomb” situation, if you go there in the power of the Holy Spirit, trusting in Almighty God, you’ll find that He has already gone before you and rolled the stone away. Continue walking on that path that He has set before you, and even though it may seem dark, be assured that you’re walking towards the Light of the world, and He wants to shine on you and bring life into you and your situation.

In her joy at seeing the risen Jesus, I’m sure Mary fully recognised that she no longer needed the spices she had brought. Those things associated with death. Jesus certainly no longer needed them. We don’t read about her holding on to them, I’m sure she left them where they belonged … in the tomb. How often do we hold on to things, mindsets, habits, etc, that have no place in our new life in Jesus? They don’t belong. We shouldn’t’ be carrying them. Shake them off. Be free of them. Leave them behind.

Obedience is key. Jesus was obedient, even to death on the cross (Philippians 2:1-11). This brought us salvation and a hope for eternity. Mary was obedient, she kept walking, in the dark, and she had the privilege of being the first to see the risen Jesus! (Mark 6:9). Obedience precedes the anointing. Obedience precedes extra-ordinary miracles. Obedience brings blessing.

Mary also had the privilege of being commissioned by Him to go and tell the good news to His disciples. Now imagine her joy as she went to find them. All darkness and despair were gone, her step was lighter, not only was there natural daylight but the Light of Jesus was shining in and through her as she spoke His words to the others. We, too have the privilege of meeting the risen Jesus, of hearing Him call us by name, of being commissioned to bring His Kingdom near to others. We need to recognise the importance of receiving His word and applying it in our lives. There is so much power in speaking His words of life.

Declare His words of life over what appears to be dead in your life, your family, your health, your finances, your God-given hopes and dreams. In faith speak life into everything that seems like a defeat. See Him release His power and see His plans and purposes fulfilled, and His Kingdom established here on earth. Partner with Him and see all things become possible (Matthew 19:26).

How do you live each day? Like Jesus is still in the tomb? Or, like Jesus is alive?

Because Jesus is alive, we can live life in freedom and power. We are released from the bondage of sin, and set free to live a lifestyle that gives glory to God, blesses others and also lifts us up. We can be confident that every difficult circumstance we face is an opportunity for God to show His power through us. When we stand on God’s truth in every situation we won’t get a “tomb” mentality. Like Mary, the power of the resurrection and everything to do with our new life is passed on to us because the same Holy Spirit that raised Jesus from the dead dwells in us (Romans 8:11). The fear of the tomb has to leave us when we start living out the truth that greater is He that is within us than he that is in the world (1 John 4:4). We have the victory and can overcome our circumstances by the power of His word.

This Easter can be the dawn of a new day for you as you choose to believe in the truth of the resurrection. Allow God to breathe new life into you. Allow His light to shine in those dark places. Jesus came to restore, forgive, heal and His Holy Spirit is sent to empower. Like Mary, rejoice that Jesus has made Himself known to you in all His resurrected glory. Rejoice that He knows your name, and has called and chosen you to take His presence with you everywhere you go.

“The path of the righteous is like the first gleam of dawn, shining ever brighter till the full light of day.” Proverbs 4:18

A very happy and blessed Easter to you as you walk in your God given authority, empowered daily by His Holy Spirit and celebrate the resurrection of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ!

 

For more information about how to register, cost of the seminar please use the link below

https://transformationondemand.com/university/women-of-destiny/

or contact:

university@transformourworld.org

All these sessions recorded, so you’ll be able to watch even if you’re unable to participate live.

 

Children from Kids4Christ and Sussex House enjoying lunch at MacDonalds, before visiting the Phuket Aquarium
A fun outing sponsored by the ladies of DESTINY

 

Transformation Women’s Workshop
Pastor Margaret speaking at the Transform Our World global conference in San Francisco

 

Enjoying a traditional English High Tea

 

Happy Mother’s Day (UK) and Happy International Women’s Day!

These are 2 very special days on which to remember and celebrate those influential and significant women in our lives.

On Sunday 6th it’s Mother’s Day in the UK. A day when we honour our mothers, and others who have had an influence in our lives. Although I can’t be with my mother on the actual day, I was so blessed to be in England last month so that I could spend some time with her, and give her a card and gifts to open. Praise God for phones so that we’ll be able to talk together on Sunday afternoon! She’ll be 90 in May, so we’re looking forward to that celebration too!

Mothering Sunday, as it’s also known in the UK, was originally a time when people returned to the church where they were baptized or attended as children. In this way families were reunited as adults returned to the towns and villages where they grew up. What a lovely way to honour God and celebrate His family!

On Tuesday 8th it is International Women’s Day, with this year’s theme being “The Pledge for Parity”. Many around the world will be celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievement of women. In Nottingham, UK, the city where my mother is from, a group of women will be holding a 2 day Careers Festival to give school leavers and university students a chance to meet prospective employers. This is a great opportunity for young women about to embark on a career to also get themselves known, and show that they are equally capable of successfully taking their place alongside men in the market place and being part of the team.

In a world where there is still not the equality that God ordained and that we too desire, as women of the Kingdom it is vital that we know our true identity in God, rise up and become the women that He created us to be and take our rightful place as His Ekklesia in these times. It may seem that darkness is all around us, but I’d like to end with a quote from Queen Elizabeth’s speech last Christmas: “It’s better to light a candle than curse the darkness.” May we continue to walk in the opposite spirit, to bless and not curse, and allow the Light of Jesus to shine in us and through us to our families, our workplaces, our communites and indeed, our world.

I celebrate and honour all you women out there, many of whom I’ve had the privilege of meeting and getting to know over the years. I’m blessed to know you and am thankful for the input that you’ve had in my life.

Margaret J Burton
DESTINY, a Ministry of Transform Our World & Phuket Christian Centre
‘The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.’
John 1:5


DESTINY Sunday &
Women: God's Secret Weapon Graduation
Sunday 22nd March 2015

March 22nd 2015 was DESTINY Sunday in PCC, and also Women: God’s Secret Weapon graduation.

A transformation woman is a woman of influence – a transformation man is a man of influence – and together we are a very powerful influence, because together we can do far more than we ever could separately. But it starts in us first, each of us recognising our identity in God and our role in God’s kingdom as His Ekklesia. Men and women are not meant to be in competition with each other, but to complement each other, to work in unity in the home, in the workplace, and in the church. This applies to all of us, men, women – no matter what our current status – single or married - as we live out a transformation lifestyle seeking to bring God’s Kingdom near to others it will be powerful. Don’t underestimate the influence that you have, no matter how small it may seem to be.

 

“As we live out a TM lifestyle, every ordinary moment becomes an opportunity for Kingdom growth.”
Pastor Brian J Burton, Senior Pastor, PCC

 

Sixteen ladies graduated. The following is a summary from the testimonies that they shared as a result of going through the Women: God’s Secret Weapon course:

“A Transformation Woman stands for righteousness. She trusts God. She is a woman of power, purpose and destiny. She doesn’t count the cost. She walks in the opposite spirit. She recognizes that, whatever her status, married or single, or whatever her age, everyone is a minister and has a role to play in God’s Kingdom. She allows God’s word to renew her mind. She allows God to speak to her and through her, and is confident that others will listen to what she has to say. She thanks God for the freedom that she has in Him, and makes the most of the opportunities that come her way, looking for God’s solutions to her problems. She stands firm in the battle, full of God’s power recognizing who she is in Him. She’s confident in God. She sees herself as God sees her, and she sees others as God sees them. She experiences God’s peace, first of all knowing that she has to have peace first before she can pass it on to others. She recognizes the blessing that it is to be a woman, and gives God her best in all things.”

“I highly recommend that you read 'Women: God’s Secret Weapon'. Take time to read it prayerfully and allow its powerful message to sink deep into your heart. It will be life changing, both to you and your church as you embrace your God-given role.”
Margaret J Burton, DESTINY, A Ministry of the International Transformation Network, & Phuket Christian Centre.



As a Transformation Church everything we do reflects our vision for nation transformation. Transformation starts in me first, and then spreads to my family, my workplace, my city and my nation. DESTINY is a Bible based Transformation Women's Ministry of the International Transformation Network, equipping and releasing women to find and fulfill their God given role.


What does it mean to be a Transformation Woman?

A Transformation Woman moves out of the slaves’ quarters and into the palace to live with her Heavenly Father.

She’s the King’s daughter, clothed in a beautiful robe (a robe of righteousness, a covering) with a ring on her finger (covenant relationship, belonging)

She is confidant in who she is in God, and in fulfilling the role that He has given to her.

She is an original – like a one of a kind, valuable, priceless painting – beautiful to look at, intentionally made, each brush stroke put there by the Artist’s hand and signed by Him.

She’s made in the image of her Creator and grows in value.

She’s His masterpiece created for good works. She’s created equal, but different to man, living out her full God-given potential.

She’s a powerful influence to those around her, bringing peace and blessings, confident that she can impact communities, cities and even nations.

She’s an ordinary woman doing extra-ordinary things for God.

Quote: Dr Ed Silvoso, Founder and President Harvest Evangelism “She is God’s secret weapon!”


Copyright © Margaret J Burton DESTINY 2014 (A Ministry of Transform Our Word)


EMPOWERMENT MEETINGS
A balanced Bible based transformation women’s ministry

The women in the Bible tell us a lot about ourselves, and a lot about God. Although times, places, traditions, etc have changed, God is more than able to help us meet and overcome the daily challenges that we face. He is the same, yesterday and forever, and His love doesn’t change. His power is still the same and is readily available to us as we put our trust in Him, and bring Him into every aspect of our lives.

The women in the Bible were real live people, walking out their daily lives, having to cope with all that life threw at them… not knowing what the end result would be. May their stories point us to the God Almighty, and help us to understand that He is just as true to His Word today as He was in Bible times. May we be inspired and challenged by their stories, so that we too can impact our spheres of influence and bring transformation to the world around us.


“TRANSFORMATION IN MY CITY”
Lessons from Lydia

“A woman named Lydia, from the city of Thyatira, a seller of purple fabrics, a worshiper of God, was listening: and the Lord opened her heart to respond to the things spoken by Paul.” Acts 16:14 NASB

A transformation woman hears from God and responds to Him. Lydia is an excellent example of a transformation woman, and from her story we learn that a transformation woman has:

1. Open Ears
“So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the Word of Christ.” Romans 10:17

2. An Open Heart
“… Lydia … was listening: and the Lord opened her heart to respond to the things spoken by Paul.” Acts 16:14 NASB

3. An Open Home
“And when she and her household had been baptised, she urged us, saying, ‘If you have judged me to be faithful to the Lord, come into my house and stay.’ And she prevailed upon us.” Acts 16:15 NASB

The Greek word for hospitality is “philoxenia”. It’s a word formed from 2 other words:
1) love
2) stranger
So, true Christian hospitality is showing love, even to strangers!

“Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by this some have entertained angels without knowing it.” Hebrews 13:2 NASB

The blessings through the obedience of one woman, Lydia, spread to a city and a continent! Never underestimate the influence that you can have, no matter how small it may seem to be at first! Allow your heart to be open to God’s Word, and step out in faith and bless others with what you have.


“LIFE UNEXPECTED”
Lessons from the Book of Ruth

Part 1 – Choose bitterness or blessing – Chapters 1 & 2

When life doesn’t turn out the way we expect or want it to, how do we respond? We are faced with a choice, which will either lead us into bitterness or blessing. If we know God, and we’ve made Jesus the Saviour and Lord of our lives, we are assured that He promises to give us wisdom in all our decision-making.

As we hear what He says, receive His Word, and then step out in faith and obey it – this will lead to blessing and miracles. Maybe not always in the way we think it will work it out, God’s ways are not our ways – but we have to trust that He always knows best.

Ruth chose to have faith in God, to love Him and to love others Her decision to stay with Noami showed she believed that God would take care of them no matter what happened. God rewarded her for her faith, and through her willingness and obedience, her love for God and for others, not only was she blessed but those around her and even a nation was blessed as God’s plans for her were fulfilled.

God is looking at our heart, He’s willing to help us with our choices – He wants us to live in blessing not bitterness. He shows us the right path to follow, but it is up to us to walk in it.


“REDEEMING LOVE”
Lessons from the Book of Ruth

Part 2 – Chapters 3 & 4

Quote: Dr Ed Silvoso, Founder and President, Harvest Evangelism, “It’s not about us, it’s about God and God is about nations.”

Making the right choice helped Ruth keep an open heart to God and so allowed Him to reveal His plan for her – and in doing so it fulfilled God’s plan for the nations. God has a plan and it’s much bigger than us – He requires our obedience, He gives us the faith to do it, and all the time He just keeps telling us that He loves us. And He loves us with such an amazing love. His Word tells us that His love is genuine, perfect, never ending, unconditional and freely available for us!

Throughout the story of Ruth we can see God’s love shining through her, and the warmth of His love touching all those around her. When we embrace our true identity and know that we’re unconditionally loved by our Heavenly Father we, too, can reach out to others and touch them with God’s love. We, too, can see lives changed, communities, cities and even nations impacted for God by the transforming power of His great love.