"Human beings disappear like a breath; even people of rank live artificial lives."

Psalm 62:9a (TPT)

The opposite of being “artificial” is being “real”, and being “real” can’t be real if a “substitute” is trying to invade. By “real” I mean having a genuine and authentic life which is the opposite of “artificial.” This point is especially true when it comes to our personal relationship with Jesus. We need to understand that Jesus wants us to see and feel “His Reality”; the reality of His presence. Why? Because He wants us to live our best lives in order that we “flourish” in Him! The More you desire to be like Him the more you’ll discover “the original you” in Him. My point is that when we avoid the “artificial”, we begin to FLOURISH in Him as never before!

We live in a world that is constantly tempting us to accept “substitutes.” If we accept those substitutes, we’ll end up with the artificial instead of the real. The definition of “substitute” is, “to put something or someone in place of another; artificial, bogus, fake.”

My generation is looking for the “real thing”, not a substitute. Many times, we get caught up in so many fashionable, cool and hip but “artificial” things that we end up losing what is Original! Paul, the Apostle, taught us to be careful that we don’t have substitutes for the original Jesus, the original Spirit and the original Gospel (see 2 Corinthians 11).

My personal pursuit has always been to be real. Through God’s grace and mercy, He’s working in me in this area of my life. I don’t like being fake. I’m known to be very honest and real about things. For example, if I’m going to impart something to you, my approach is to be sensitive but honest. What I share will come from my heart. It will be genuine. There will be nothing artificial about it, but the Lord has had to “shape me” in this area to make me a better communicator. He knows I don’t ever want to be fake or try to be something that I’m not. My pursuit is to be genuine before God and people just the way He desires and made me to be.

When I worship Jesus, it’s genuine because it comes from my heart. The same is true in my love for people. Yet to help them flourish in their situations, I’m compelled to “speak the truth in love”, just as Paul said. This is what helped and is helping me to continue to flourish in areas of my life. This is how Jesus has helped shape my character, and continues to, because He wants me to be who He’s created me to be. And not to be artificial.

It’s Jesus’ love that makes us flourish, stay genuine and forsake the fake. I love what Romans 5:5 (TPT) says, “...we can now experience the endless love of God cascading into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who lives in us!” The Holy Spirit is the One who leads us to “live our best life” and to “flourish.” He’s waiting for you to come to Him without any substitutes or artificial methods. Let’s drop all of those things and be real before Him.

Dr. Jesse Duplantis prophesied this over me: “Thank you for being who you are and thank you for forgiving those who didn’t forgive you. I have a special plan for you; it looks heavy but I’m sending you the laborers to carry it with you.”

As blessed as I was to hear those words, I didn’t fully understand what he meant. Why? Because I thought, “Isn’t that all Jesus desires of us to be, His original?” I’ve never set out to be different or to pretend to be someone Jesus never made me to be.

I was helped even more when Pastor Kellie Copeland, Dr. Kenneth Copeland’s daughter, spoke a prophetic word over me as well. She said: “You’re gonna take people to the back room into the places they thought they couldn’t go.” All I understood was that somehow, someway, God will work through me to help others discover Jesus as their original design as well. That’s humbling but I’m open and available. It’s all going to be a work of His unconditional love, grace and mercy. So, let’s “cut away” any unnecessary and meaningless artificial substitutes that we may have picked up somewhere. Let’s go back to our original design in Jesus. He is our foundation for living a “flourishing” life. Come along, join me, the journey is exciting and let’s flourish together!

The more you spend time with Jesus the more You become like Him! He makes you more original. Your identity comes from that place of being genuine with no substitutes! When you live in this freedom, you’re living in ultimate freedom. When I think of how much we are weighed down trying to be something we’re not, it’s because we haven’t drawn from our identity in Jesus. We struggle and it’s not living in His ultimate freedom.

When we stop and are just with Jesus it’s truly very special. This place of bravery to let Jesus be the THE REAL THING WITH NO SUBSTITUTES for you is the best thing! You know who you are in Him and you’re you, with Him shaping your character. So, I’m all about the real thing! I mean yes, on occasion I will settle for a fake Louis Vuitton bag, but would I prefer the real thing? Absolutely! So, what Jesus wants from you is to be the MOST REAL THING IN YOUR LIFE! So real that it’s tangible. He’s not just something we talk about. He’s real! He’s calling you to Him. He calls me to be with Him all the time and I can sense Him carrying me to Him even in the middle of the day! Jesus is the real thing; He’s not a substitute sweetener. So, go ahead and be with Him! (Alexis Sepulveda)

“Today, I desire not to have any substitutes for who Jesus is in my life. I WANT THE REAL THING!”


    • Old Testament: Isaiah 17-20; Proverbs 21:17-31
    • New Testament: Luke 22:14-23; Hebrews 4:12-16