Archive for the ‘ministry’ category

The Overflow of Intimacy in a Company of Believers

April 15, 2014

True ministry has been well described as the overflow of intimacy. What does that really look like? It is a lot more than operating in natural talents and even spiritual gifts. Someone may have come into a gift of The Spirit such as the working of miracles following a time when they were pressing into God in right relationship with pure heart motives, and yet that person’s relationship with God could now be lukewarm at best or they could even be in serious sin. Yet still the gifting flows because “the gifts and calling of God are without repentance.” (Romans 11: 29)

As a number of important prophetic voices have enunciated recently we are at the threshold of the greatest outpouring of God’s Spirit in history, and the true Church’s finest hour to be God’s instrument to bring in a great end time harvest of souls. The preparation process in those believers who have yielded to God has been painful at times but necessary to remove all that would hinder Jesus Christ being the “fulness of Him who fills all in all” (Ephesians 1: 23) through them. New levels of His love, purity, holiness, faith, and humility have been required.

It is easy for a non believer to be impressed with gifts such as prophecy, the word of knowledge, healing and miracles but it will not change them unless they know in their heart that they have had an encounter with Jesus. The world has seen double standards and mixed motives at times when what they have been really seeking is Jesus Himself! That’s why the healing of the lame man in Acts 3 at the Gate Beautiful had such an impact. The key is in Acts 4:13 when the Sanhedrin realized that Peter and John “had been with Jesus.”

It is possible to get more excited about supernatural phenomena that is an outward manifestation of the “parousia,” (greek) the presence of The Lord than The Lord Himself. This could have contributed to revivals being shut down in history when people got caught up with the evangelist and the miracles rather than God. Imagine for a moment that like Peter you were walking on water but you were looking at Jesus. Would you get more excited about the fact you were walking on water or you were looking at the face of the Lord Jesus Christ Himself? Who or what do we treasure most?

God is getting ready to give a new level of “exousia” (greek) which is delegated power and authority to a company of believers to represent Jesus to the world. I believe this has always been God’s desire as we see from John 17:

And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one: I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that You have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me.” John 17 22-23

John had the unique privilege to share this most profound prayer of Jesus for His true bride to be in union with Him. It is no surprise that we learn that John was the beloved disciple who rested his head on Jesus’ chest. He would have been able to hear Jesus’ heartbeat, and if Jesus spoke His voice would have resonated through His very being. Being close to The Lord can mean that we not only hear His voice and respond in obedience, but capture something of His very heart. Hearing His voice through a deeper relationship with Him means that God will use the prophetic in a new way. Similarly if we have a fresh passion to see lost souls come home and faith for miracles it is because this is also an outworking of our intimacy with Him.

When we are abandoned to Him we are no longer swayed by either the praise or persecution of man but only His voice. We obey Him in pursuing the assignments and mandates He has for us corporately and within our unique ministry callings out of our love for Him only (John 14:15)

When we adore Him and are fascinated with Him we become desperate for more of Him. In the words of the Shulamite in Song of Solomon we become “lovesick” (5:8) He has truly captured our hearts, now we have surrendered to Him, and He can use us as vessels that are fully possessed by Him and ready to do more than function in gifting but display Him in character, nature, power and virtue. Forerunners such as William Branham and Katherine Kulhman have epitomized what God has planned for His people. He will not just use great high profile evangelists like Benny Hinn and Reinhard Bonnke, but everyday believers like you and me in these exciting days ahead. Holy Spirit abides in every believer, but there is a company who have prepared a home for Christ to dwell in so there is a greater fulness of His anointing activated and expressed to demonstrate the gospel (1 Corinthians 2 4-5) In 1 John 3 24 we learn an important truth:

Now he who keeps His commandments abides in Him, and He in him. And by this we know that He abides in us, by the Spirit whom He has given us.

The English monk Bede 672/673-735 AD helped to translate portions of the Bible from Latin into Old English centuries before Wycliffe and Tyndale. The Amplified Bible has used his translation of part of this same verse:

They let Christ be a home to them and they are the home of Christ.

How much will you and I allow that to happen and see the impossible birthed through the overflow of intimacy?

Stratford-upon-avon ministry update with video testimony

October 4, 2012

We have been living in the Stratford-upon-avon area for over a month now. Though there have been challenges God has been so faithful to us. By His grace and mercy new doors have opened to us. We have had the opportunity to enjoy a time of refreshment in His presence as we have been settling in. I have learnt more than ever that there can be no fruitfulness without intimacy. More is less and less is more in God’s economy. It is vital that we lay aside our agendas and ideas and just pursue Him seeking the revelatory realms so we can be fully in alignment with His plans and purposes for our lives. Our dreams must be subservient to His dreams for us. We must seek first to build His Kingdom alone. God is looking for a bridal company with burning hearts who are laid down to everything but Him and His mandates given to us.  The Church is increasingly moving to an apostolic structure seen in the book of Acts. This will offend the religious mindset because it requires a paradigm shift many do not want to take. It is essential to be in right relationship therefore, and Sasha and me recognise how important it is to have good accountability and covering as we move forward. It is a time to get excited about revival again. I do not believe that the new move will be like previous moves where there was an excessive focus upon the evangelist at the front. God is breaking down those walls of pride, religion, control, and restriction. I do not believe that the new move will be just visitation but will be about habitation where God has control of a yielded body of believers entrusted with a deposit of His glory.

We are thankful to God that we have been able to find families and individuals who have a genuine need for food within the local community working with secular organisations and other churches. We are thankful to Trevor and Sharon and Revival Fires too for supporting us to get this off the ground. It is so important to get increasingly more of God’s passionate heart of love for the lost. We must not judge people we see on the streets and in our sphere of influence. We should see people as HIS creations, HIS lost children that are looking for a way back home. We must show them that way home. I believe that signs, wonders, healings and miracles demonstrate how wonderful a Father we have. Let’s look for opportunities to share God’s love and power. They are not hard to find! Jesus must have all the pre-eminence and receive His full inheritance. See this video of a man testifying of being healed of an injury sustained thirty years previously, then look for someone to pray for.  They deserve an encounter with The Lord too, and it could influence their eternal destiny:

The marriage of mercy and miracle ministry

August 24, 2009

Acts 10 verse 38 “God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with The Holy Spirit and with power who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him.”

It is certainly true that the body of Christ have not walked in their full inheritance in the last two thousand years ago in proclaiming and demonstrating the full gospel of Jesus Christ in Kingdom power, and yet God has used many to reach people with the love of Christ through doing good, through compassionate and merciful acts of kindness. Recently I heard a friend refer to an unnamed church in America that operates in prophetic and healing evangelism but feels led to leave other churches to feed the hungry, and provide material help for those suffering in poverty in the local community. In other words those other churches will be the “do gooders” but that church will distinguish themselves as being the ones that operate in the supernatural.
I had to ask myself, is that kind of separation biblical?

God has been speaking to me about convergence and fulness coming to the body of Christ where there isn’t an apparent excessive emphasis on one area of who The Lord is as in previous outpourings of The Spirit, and how He desires to minister through His body The Church. One example of healthy fulness is when prominence is given to The Word and The Spirit together. There can then be a move away from meetings becoming too information or experience driven, and the very “zoe” life of God can thereby infuse hearts and minds. Our experiences must never contravene The Word so we should be rooted and grounded so as to avoid opening ourselves up to deception, yet we mustn’t shy away from the new thing that The Lord wants to do in The Spirit because of sterile religious tradition, and a fear of the manifestation of His glory if it is “out of the box.”

When we are ministering to someone, The Word tells us about sacrificial giving and serving to meet a person’s needs, but The Spirit gives us specific strategies in how best to implement that. People need to know about the kindness and goodness of The Lord through our love for them (Romans 2 verse 4) , yet through a tangible encounter with His manifest presence they can get divine revelation to the reality of Jesus that can change them forever.

The Word and The Spirit together release mercy and miracle ministry to work harmoniously in tandem. About two years ago in the early days of going out on the streets wanting to share the gospel through prophetic and healing evangelism, The Lord spoke to me of the importance of compassion. Matthew 14 verse 14 says that “Jesus went out and He saw a great multitude, and He was moved with compassion for them, and healed their sick.” We need to find out what people need. James 2 verse 19 tells us to be “swift to hear, slow to speak, and slow to anger.” We need to listen to God as we listen to people with compassion rather than preach at them. Some people might be hungry and need a meal, or a cup of coffee and someone to talk to, or a physical healing. We can get information by asking people what they need, but also The Holy Spirit can give us words of knowledge to reveal Jesus to them. I truly believe that mercy ministry can be the breeding ground for the miraculous. You only have to look at people like Roland and Heidi Baker in Mozambique adopting many orphans, yet seeing The Lord work through them in great acts of Kingdom power such as the blind getting their sight and even the dead raised. Moreover, testimonies of miraculous multiplication of food confirm how The Lord desires to do today what He did in His life on Earth, and even greater (John 14 verse 12) through His church.

There is a danger of compartmentalizing mercy and miracle ministry as being wholly separate. In Jesus’ parable of The Good Samaritan in Luke 10 we read that the Samaritan expressed his compassion for the man who had been attacked, left for dead on the side of the road, practically. In verse 34 it states that “He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine, and he set him on his animal, brought him to an inn, and took care of him.” It goes on to say that he gave the man money. Clearly this parable talks about mercy ministry, and yet I believe the reference to the oil and wine ministered to the man goes deeper than natural medicine but can be seen as referring to the healing anointing that Jesus operated in that is available to all born again believers. Mark 6:13 says that the disciples “anointed many sick people with oil and healed them”. The Greek word for anoint is aleipho which literally means to rub, to cover over. He is covering over and filling His body the church with all His attributes, His very DNA for this hour in history so He will be glorified as His Kingdom comes on Earth as it is in Heaven. (see Ephesians 1 22-23 and Ephesians 3 17-19) I believe the day is coming where it will be just as natural for The Church to pray for the sick and see signs wonders and miracles as it is to do good to people through providing for their material needs and befriending them. We need to press in to function in the fullest expression of God’s love that we can. I believe we will see The Lord ignite churches with a fresh passion for souls and compassion for the poor birthed through intimacy with The bridegroom Jesus Christ where mercy ministry and prophetic and healing evangelism will flow together to see a mighty end time harvest of souls. Let’s not miss what The Father is doing, but embrace the exceptional privilege that has been granted to each one of us to be fruitful carriers of His love, His mercy, and His glory.