Are You an End Times Soldier?

Nicole Headshot in blue shirt

Nicole D. Hayes, Founder, Voices Against the Grain

There are times in life when we’re given unsettling news or information.

Such information can leave us bewildered or worried. We may wish the news was different or would reverse course. To deal with it, we might hide our head in the sand hoping “it” goes away. For some of us, receiving unsettling news may momentarily jolt us, then sobers us up very quickly and steers us into a new mindset. It is often better to have the news so we can respond accordingly rather than being left in the dark and blindsided. It’s even better when despite the unsettling news, the outcome is good if you’ve made the right decision.

In this way, God’s Word has prepared His People for things to come in these last days. In fact, as someone said, “The Bible is more up-to-date than tomorrow’s newspaper.” So true. He has also given us our focus, mission and marching orders. In our daily commune with Him, He gives us our instructions. God is training and raising up soldiers in His Army to endure to the end.

Many of us have prayed for God’s will to be done in this perishing world — for Him to render justice to injustice; for Him to remove the corrupt and replace with the godly; that people would no longer place their confidence in idols but be wholly dependent upon Him, to soften hardened hearts to receive truth, and to fully mature and unify the Body of Christ.

We should reject any notion that this process will be neatly packaged with a pretty red bow. God is destabilizing everything to expose, dismantle and remove. He is using the situations as instruments to draw hearts to Him. This destabilization must run its course. But do not be afraid.

End Times

We’ll move in greater confidence when we break off our long-held love affair with traditional systems and institutions, expecting deliverance from them. God Almighty is our assured Deliverer.

Things will continue to destabilize with “great distress” as never seen before (Matthew 24:21). As described in Matthew 24, these are birth pains — the outcomes of a wicked and sin-wracked world, a world at enmity with God their Creator. God will not allow wickedness to go unchecked. This earth is passing away. God will create a new heaven and a new earth as told to us in Isaiah 65:17, 2 Peter 3:13 and Revelation 21:1. We are to look toward a new heaven and new earth where righteousness and God’s Kingdom will reign. He is making all things new.

Revelation 21-5

Dear victorious saint and soldier, I encourage you to run your race in obedience; to obediently and courageously walk out your calling amid whatever storms are brewing. Though the waters will be choppy, God is with you! He will get you to shore. May we have a heart for reaching the lost and desire to see this last harvest come to Christ.

We have wonderfully Good News to share with the world! That is the mission. God is extending His forever family — not failed institutions and systems. God has always been in the business of reconciling us back in right relationship with Him. Gratefully, as soldiers in His Army, we’ve been invited to co-labor with Him in this great mission field and ministry of reconciliation as Christ’s Ambassadors as Paul explains in 2 Corinthians 5:18-20.

If you are indeed an end times soldier, patiently encourage growth with our brothers and sisters who are yet to mature into this disposition. Encourage them in faith and truth. The weak and the strong both belong to God. May we be purveyors of hope or as a dear brother in Christ says, “be hope dealers” to those who are unsteady in these times. We should expect to grow spiritually as we graduate to new levels in our calling. May our hope, joy, a deepening love for others, peace and steadiness be considered the normal disposition of God’s People in times of increasing instability— rather than a carnal default of worry.

John 16-33 mountains

Our God and Captain, King Jesus, has already overcome the world (John 16:33)! Jesus defeated Satan. In Jesus, our victory is already won and we are more than conquerors (Romans 8:37). May we live like we know this.

As things appear chaotic, remain mission-focused, not distracted by the peripheral or extraneous. Keep watch, be ready and keep your eye on Our trusted Captain to lead you ever so faithfully. Follow Him so closely that your focus will not allow you to become double-minded, causing you to be caught off guard and deceived. Our Lord’s return will be joyful for us who belong to Him but very dreadful for those who do not as they’ve chosen the world as their portion instead of Him. May we be found fit to be partakers of our reward and inheritance.

Though our world is in perpetual unrest, we can remain in constant rest through our relationship and confidence in Christ Jesus. With this disposition, you will indeed be an end times saint and soldier.

Love and God bless you,

Nicole

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Remain Faithful in the Strange

Increasing violence from city, to countryside to nations.  Corrupt leadership at all levels of authority. Immorality plays out on our television screens permeating the walls within our homes, schools and other structures. An uptick in natural disasters. Given this, who is surprised at the destruction we see in our world? These events have been a long-time coming. Certainly the events are unnerving and can bring feelings of despair.

Sad_ManAs Jesus shared at the Mount of Olives in Matthew 24:6-8: 6-“You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. 7-Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. 8- All these are the beginning of birth pains.”

Birth pains? Women who have birthed a child know birth pains/contractions may begin hours apart, and increase to minutes apart as the baby is delivered. Such is the case in the events we are witnessing. The events are certain to intensify to bring about the final act: Jesus’ return and Satan’s demise.

Before this day and the days to come, God told us this would happen. But do not fear, be not confused nor consider it “strange.” God desires for his chosen to walk in faith, peace, love and clarity with “eyes wide open.” Throughout His holy scriptures, He tells us the signs of our changing environment. Signs that signify an increase in the wickedness and usher in Jesus’ return.  But who is listening? In Isaiah 65:2-3, God says, 2- “All day long I have held my hands out to an obstinate people, who walk in ways not good, pursuing their own imaginations—3- a people who continue to provoke me to my very face.”

How long will God’s grace and mercy strive with unbelievers? With the immoral? With the wicked? Why does man continue in his arrogance that he can do his own thing without consequences?

In these “birth pains,” it is irrelevant whether we are in the first trimester or nearing the last. One thing is certain: time is running short. The birth pains are accelerating with common words exchanged by onlookers such as, “I’ve never seen anything like this before.” The events are not coincidental. While the enemy is unleashing scheme after scheme, God is stretching out His arms to those who will hear. He is making every effort to get our attention (even in tragedies) to pierce our hearts, to humble the proud, to cease the works of the wicked as the end nears. He is raising up an Army of bold believers who will share His Word and truth to wherever He instructs.  This is ever more a time for the body of Christ to be united; moving on one accord, and not divided by denominations and doctrine. Remain faithful to what He has called you to do.

Welcome to Voices Against the Grain

Nicole D. Hayes, Founder, Voices Against the Grain

Nicole D. Hayes, Founder, Voices Against the Grain

Aahh…my shoulders relax, I draw a deep breath and smile. I have finally exhaled.  A project that has been shaping for months has now taken form.

For those who don’t know, my name is Nicole D. Hayes. Click on the “About” tab to learn my background and beliefs.

What is “Voices Against the Grain”?

“Voices Against the Grain” is a blog and weekly online radio show (show starts Wednesday, September 4!) daringly designed for audiences to learn and share how to advance God’s Kingdom in a “do your own thing,” consensus society. We challenge the status quo. We do not conform to the norm. We will feature conversations from everyday people to celebrities and other figures who are operating in obedience to God’s Word in a challenging world. These special voices are thankfully “too bold to leave His work in their lives untold.” In a world of unrelenting changes, there is One whose Word, whose promises, and whose authority remains unchanged:  Jesus Christ.bold_t1

How Did the Project Start?

I spent months quietly gaining clarity and discernment from the Holy Spirit on how He would have me to serve as a vessel to distribute light, salt and truth into this confused and dark world. I wrote notes on what He was pouring into my spirit, still uncertain of the platform or vehicle in which to deliver “this” effort. Since May 2012, God has placed me in spaces to deliver bold messages. While sometimes uncomfortable, it has become 100% freeing.  To straddle and shape-shift more than three decades of living between the politically correct and sharing God’s truth for me is exhausting, brings feelings of constraint and forces tweaked messages for various audiences to keep everyone smiling and at ease. I’ve lived for God since age 12, increasingly so—but not in every space can you speak openly about “God” or “Jesus Christ.”

God has continued to “push me out front,” as a mouthpiece for Him, increasing my boldness. I could ask, “Why me?,” though I know He has equipped and authorized me for this position. It was during a mid-March 2013 conversation in my dentist’s chair that something definitive clicked in my spirit to inform and shape the contours of “this.” My dentist (who is Christian), she and I spoke sadly about various celebrities and media that have negatively influenced our way of interacting with one another. How does one successfully navigate in a society that packages and perpetuates various deceptions to make people “feel good”? And what if you don’t support the world’s deceptions? Will you be considered to lack morals to do what is good for all mankind? If you’re not part of the “get along gang,” will you be viewed as inharmonious to the collective impulses of society? Hmm…maybe we’re onto something here.

My dentist ultimately desired to see a platform created for people whose daily living honors God so others would know and be encouraged that such role models exist. That they need not turn to worldly celebrities whose lifestyles suggests freedom but are actually warped and wrapped by untold bondages. My dentist asked me, “How can we be a voice to inform those people who truly want to live free and not feel they must conform to society’s values?”

Therefore, I introduce to you, “Voices Against the Grain.”

Why is a Platform like “Voices Against the Grain” Necessary? OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

As my dear friend Hakim would say, “Because you need to know.” God has made His Word known to us, for those willing to hear. He desires we know these things about life so not to be fearful or surprised—but to be prepared, respond accordingly and remain in peace while doing so. As Jesus said in John 16:33 (New International Version): “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world, you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

Key Objectives for “Voices Against the Grain” Blog and Radio Show:

  • To Bring Clarity and Restoration from Deception.  God’s Word is a sword that will cut to the deepest places, bringing undeniable truth to those willing to receive it and to those seeking healing and true freedom, true love and true peace.  His Word blows away the fog so ultimately, confusion is removed and clarity and restoration can occur.
  • To Educate and Equip. We share God’s truth for abundant living to help you successfully navigate in an ever-changing world with a God who is forever constant. God’s Word is not subject to consensus or vote, as in democratic societies.
  • To Encourage. Through stories shared by other believers, we encourage others to know they are not in this struggle alone—and with God, we are never alone.
  • To Love in Truth.  We are committed to showing love while sharing the truth; our intent is not to disparage anyone—only to disparage Satan and his counterfeit schemes. This is not to say the truth won’t hurt and won’t punch you. It may. How much truth can you take? We will love you in the process. He has loved us in truth and we extend the same to you.

Curious what we will discuss? Seeking truth amidst confusion?  We’ll discuss hot topics such as (but not limited to):

  • God’s design for relationships, marriage and sex
  • Relationship Identifiers: Fruit-bearers or extractors?
  • U.S. and world policies that will enslave
  • Successful business leaders who don’t cut corners
  • Waiting on God in a “need it now” world
  • Unraveling false belief systems
  • Helping young people thrive with God in a confused world
  • Religion and Doctrine vs. Relationship with God
  • “Yellow Pages Christianity”
  • What is God doing today
  • Understanding the enemy’s strategies
  • “Can I just be a ‘good’ person?”
  • Being a lamp on the hill in a world controlled by darkness
  • Navigating through politically correct systems and workplaces
  • Enjoying real peace, and more

I invite you to read our blog. Visit the “Radio Show” tab and listen starting Wednesday, September 4! Our “Bold Voices” tab will direct you to the testimonies from our featured bloggers and show guests. Their candid stories will inspire and reassure you we all have a bold journey to walk out and can do so triumphantly with God. None of us started with God. Some thought they were happily living the world’s promises until the world left them ‘wrecked’ and empty. God restored them. Now knowing the truth, they boldly press forward. They are lampstands on a hill lighting the way for others trapped in confusion and darkness.

We’re excited you’re here. Please also tell us what topics you want to learn about.  Thank you and welcome to “Voices Against the Grain,” where we are “too bold to leave His work untold.” We look forward to interacting with you. Thank you to everyone who has prayed for and supported me in this effort.

 Blessings,

 Nicole