Apr 24 2015

No more ceilings

I have been to many churches that believe in the gifts of the Spirit but never actually see anyone healed, prophesy, or move in the gifts other than speaking in tongues. It is really sad because there is so much more we can accomplish but ministry in most churches is based on the ceiling set by the beliefs of the leadership. The leadership determines what practices and beliefs will be acceptable and it is often their level of faith that determines how much God will do in and through the congregation. Romans 13 starts out with a mandate to obey those who are in authority over us because they have been put in place by God and one thing I have observed is that God often respects those authorities as well even when they choose to limit God’s promises and gifts.

A person can see miracles happen one after the other in a church where the leadership allows a lot of freedom but see no miracles at all in a church full of restrictions. Is it a different God? No, but the leadership determines what they will allow God to do even if they don’t realize they have placed him inside the box of their limited theological viewpoints. Theology is great but sometimes we let our experiences create a personal theology that isn’t in the heart of God and what we should do is trade that in for a deeper intimacy because the combination of intimacy and good theology make for a powerful ministry.

Serve your leaders with respect and honor, pray for them to have amazing encounters with God, and pray that the ceiling they have set is raised so God can pour out everything he has planned.

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Apr 17 2015

Supernatural

The spiritual world is real. Angels are real. Demons are real. God is a spiritual being. We exist as a body, soul, and spirit. These are facts that Christians all over the world believe and there is a lot of scripture to support it. So why is it that when supernatural stuff happens some people look at it like it’s weird, unholy, illegitimate, or even evil? Psalm 16:11 tells us that in his presence is fullness of joy so people laughing in the altar should be perfectly normal if they are spending time with Jesus. Exodus 34 tells us about Moses having to cover his face because of the glowing after effect of being in God’s presence. Maybe the gold dust or glitter that shows up on people’s hands and faces is a similar manifestation of what Moses experienced. Let’s not be so quick to scoff at something simply because we don’t understand it. God is so much bigger than our understanding.

Acts 8:6 and John 6:2 both show us that crowds show up when miraculous things happen. Here’s a news flash, signs and wonders are God’s PR program. Yeah, I know it’s bigger than that but if people come running when supernatural stuff happens and then you have an opportunity to tell them about Jesus, wouldn’t you want more supernatural stuff to happen? Society today is very curious about the supernatural and 1 Corinthians 12 reveals the supernatural gifts available to all of us that can be used to impact the world. We need to shift our understanding of normal so that we live from a supernatural perspective because that viewpoint positions us to see God do amazing things.

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Apr 10 2015

Past failures

Your past does not define your future. Your past mistakes do not dictate how God can and will use you. All it takes is a willing heart and he will realign your purpose. We often get caught in this mindset that God can’t use us because we have done so many wrong things but if that was the case then the purpose of Jesus’ death would be greatly limited. Paul is easily the best example of this. He was at worst a murderer and at best a violent representative of the High Priest. And yet one day God shifts his direction. I find it interesting that the story doesn’t show Paul as this guy on a pursuit of Jesus but just one encounter changed his focus. And Paul went on to pen almost half of the New Testament! From murderer to God’s mouthpiece. That’s a dramatic difference. Jesus didn’t die to make you worthy, he died because you were already worthy of the sacrifice. Don’t ever let your past mistakes lessen the value of his sacrifice and don’t ever live from a perspective that all you can do is barely slide into heaven. All of heaven is behind us in the instant that we commit our lives to Jesus. His love is too great to put limits on what he will do for us. There are no limitations so know that you are worthy of the sacrifice, worthy to be used for great things, and worthy to pull heaven to earth everywhere you go.

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Apr 5 2015

100 Mile Prayer Circle

Border Stone
Eleven hours ago we stood at the Southernmost tip of Washington D.C. at the beginning of an all-day adventure to circle the entire city in prayer. We started at the Jones Point Lighthouse just before sunrise where Major Andrew Ellicott placed a border stone in 1791 as part of the original 100 square mile borders of D.C. We worked our way Northwest, then Northeast, turned Southeast, and continued back towards where we started. Ten hours of prayer, ten hours of declarations over the city, stopping at each of the 40 boundary stone locations that outline the original coordinates that made up the District to declare blessing over the neighborhoods and claim the entire city as a prize for the Kingdom of Heaven. More than 1/3 of these locations are not part of D.C. today but we felt compelled to establish a spiritual boundary around the coordinates originally selected by the founders of this nation. At each stop we asked the Lord to release a new angel to stand by the boundary stone and declare the plans of the Lord over the city all day, every day, until the Lord returns. We are confident that he honored this request as we felt angels moving around us at many of our stops. On this day that we celebrate the resurrection of Jesus we have proclaimed that He will get everything He paid for on the cross and that this city which impacts the world will be impacted by God in a mighty way. Washington D.C. will be known as a city of God!

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Apr 3 2015

Love or Power

I’ve been writing a lot about love and intimacy lately. There is this passion within me to see the love of God pour through every believer because without love all ministry is pointless. 1 Corinthians 13 paints this picture of how prophecy, tongues, faith, etc. are all worthless when love is not the core element within each. It’s so true. I have seen people minister from pride; their words were amazing but their heart was in the wrong place. I have also seen people minister from love and the difference is night and day. Love is the key. Love always has to be the key. But there is another side to this story. Without love the gifts of the Spirit are pointless. But love without power is also pointless. I feel like we can flip this chapter around and say that love without power is nothing more than good intentions. I can love someone. I can teach them great Christian principles. But if I do not have the power to actually set them free from the addictions they are fighting, bring them deliverance from the demons that haunt them, or release joy and peace into their lives then I am still just making noise. People need to know true freedom and we aren’t doing a good enough job. Jesus told the disciples to wait in Jerusalem until the power came. What if we told all the believers to do the same. What if every believer was a passionate lover of God, loved every other person with God’s love, AND operated in the gifts of the Spirit? That would really change the landscape of the church. Power without love is pointless. Love without power is also pointless. There has to be a combination of the two to see people set completely free.

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