Sunday, July 31, 2011

Waiting on the Train

"God what is wrong with you?"

"God where are you?"

How often in the midst of persecution and struggle do we ask God, "where are you? What is wrong with you?" First and foremost we must answer these questions and the answer is much more simple than you might think.

There is nothing wrong with God and He is always with us!

There will always be hardships in our lives but we must know the truth of who God is and walk in faith that He is who He says He is. God promises that He is always with us and that He will never leave us. God is perfect, just, and right, therefore, there is nothing wrong with Him. Just because we don't have an answer to a situation does not mean that God does not have the answer. We tend to limit the knowledge of God based on our own knowledge and this is not the type of thinking we need during hard times. Instead we must meditate on the truth and a big part of the truth is this.

1 Corinthians 10:13 - "No temptation has seized you except what is common to man.
And God is faithful; He will not let you be tempted beyond what you
can bear. But when you are tempted, He will also provide a way out so that you
can stand up under it."

Now you may be wondering how temptation is related to hard times or persecution and this is what I have come to realize...

...In the midst of persecution or hard times, we have the TEMPTATION
to think that life is all about ME and therefore our response is,
"Why is this happening to ME?; or I deserve better."
(otherwise known as the temptation of pride)

Do you see what happens there? The focus comes off of the Lord. We take Him off of the throne and put ourselves up there saying that I deserve more or I deserve better. So we must rewind and remember that if we really believe what we say we believe, then this life isn't about me and I have already received more from God than I will ever deserve. The order of priority according to the Bible is God #1, others #2, and then myself falls somewhere down the line after that. It really isn't about me, it is always about God and others.

Self-pity is a form of pride and we are called to be humble. At the point of being humble and not proud we see the grace of God poured out. Both in the book of Peter and James we see God say that He will "humble the proud and pour out grace upon the humble." Grace is a train that the humble must wait to board in God's timing.

In times of persecution and struggle we must humble ourselves before the Lord, remember that He is always with us to get us beyond the temptations that come against us, and believe that the God of everything will judge righteously as He says He will. Grace is a train that will take us away from persecution and to the Lord whenever we truly need it. He is the conductor and has the timing. Be honest with the Lord but do not let self-pity sink in. Let this be our conversation with the Lord during those hardships...

... "Papa I don't think I can do this on my own."
"My child, when does the train pull into the station?"
"When the conductor says it will."
"Yes and amen. I control the train of grace, and my timing is always perfect. Be patient and humble for I have rescued you from the darkness."

Let us endure pain and suffering together as a loving family in Christ
knowing that the Lord has the answers and the timings.
A life of faith in the grace of God truly is enough
and the answer is always yes and amen.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

As He walks into the Room

"A religious person goes through the motions without Jesus."

How often do we lose sight of Him?

I heard a story once of a group of leaders in YWAM going intently after God to find out where He wanted them to lead their teams for outreach. After some incredible worship they went deep into a time of crying out to God to reveal locations for where He wanted to send them. They cried out and cried out, pressing in harder and harder until one of them screamed out and all came to a halt. Tears streaming down the young woman's face she soberly uttered the words "stop, stop... we have to stop."

Shocked and worried the rest of the group stared at this young woman desperately wanting to know what was wrong. One of them approached and asked the question that was lingering in the tension. "What is wrong?"

Trying to regain her composure she looked at the other leaders and released the most heart-breaking phrase a follower of Jesus could ever hear... "In the midst of our own agenda, trying to get God to meet our desires, Jesus just walked through the room and not one of us noticed Him!"

How often do we come to church, or prayer, or even worship with our own agenda? How often do your spiritual disciplines revolve around yourself and what you can get out of them instead of Jesus and what He wants for you to get out of them? Did you know that one of the greatest releases of the Holy Spirit upon mankind came when a group of believers went after Jesus' heart without an agenda?

We see in the beginning of the book of Acts that in the upper room, the apostles and other believers came together to worship and pray without a time constraint, without an agenda, and without selfish pursuits. They had no idea what they were waiting for or when it would come, they simply gathered together to truly go after Jesus because He, at the end of the gospels, had asked them to. We tend to want the "upper room experience" without living out the "upper room lifestyle." I have mass conviction in this area because it is something I have fallen into all too often. We must learn to pursue the Lord and pursue the spiritual disciplines without our own agenda and without taking our eyes off the Lord. Get His heart and let that be your guide... we have the greatest guide possible dwelling inside and that is the Holy Spirit. Stop and listen to what He is telling you to do, when He is telling you to do it.

Let Him be the one who sits on the throne of your heart
and you will never want to leave His presence...

Because at the end of the day, it is ALL about JESUS!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

The Circuit Riders

"And what be your payment for this endeavor?"

"Grace here and glory hereafter if he is faithful!"
~Francis Asbury

I am sorry that I have been so delayed in updating you all as to what I am doing but I have never been so busy and consumed with the pursuit of God as I have been now. For those who don't know, I am a part of something that has never been done here in YWAM in over it's 50 years of existence. We have began a week back what is known as the "School of the Circuit Riders." Let me give you a quick intro into the who the original circuit riders were before I go on.

John Wesley (founder of the Methodist movement) had embarked upon America in the beginning with other Methodist evangelists who became known as the Circuit Riders (including people such as Paul Revere, Francis Asbury, and many more). Their pursuit was to save the lost, refine the saved, and train up both groups to continue this move. During their time almost all of the population of America came to know Jesus Christ and have an intimate relationship with Him (one in which their desperation upon His presence and love for God dictated their every move). They were devoted unto death of this pursuit seeing as how many of them died before the age of 30 due to the grueling lifestyle of riding on horseback the same circuits non-stop preaching the gospel everywhere they went always. While I could go on forever about this, what I want to share is where we are at now.

About a year ago the Lord began to spread a world wide message that said the "Circuit Riders would ride again!" Well here we are training up a Gideon army of 300 to do this very thing spoken about. I tell you I have never been a part of something more intent on the pursuit of God and the pursuit of Revival. That is what we are seeing happen at this very moment and if you believe with me in faith, I tell you then that the greatest revival we have ever seen is about to sweep the earth including America. We will become a nation who pursues the heart of God again and it is happening now. I wish I had time to tell you everything that is already happening here in Kona, on the mainland, and around the world... but I don't have the time so I ask that you believe with me in faith that God is moving in a way we have never seen and that Revival is happening NOW!!! (if you want to hear more about what God is already doing call or email me and I would love to share the amazing testimonies)

I ask that as all of you think about my time here over the next four weeks before I take off to Ireland to go ride a circuit in Western Europe for over two years, that you would pray faith over all of the nations and believe with me that Revival is now. Over the next four weeks I will be consuming myself in the studies of freedom, revival and salvation because these are the messages that we as the new breed of Circuit Riders are going to carry to all the nations. Please pray aggressively during this time for a path to be made for all who carry Revival including yourself because the battle will be won in the place of intercession and the eternal before we see it in the physical. I love you all and I thank you for being on this adventure of life with me over this past year. It is crazy to think that everything truly just began for me a year ago and look at what God is doing through me now... He is so good and so much bigger than we will ever know.

"Preach faith until you have it; then you will preach it because you have it."