Ukraine #17 – Kazakhstan Is Opening Up

I am in Paris, France – another airport and another big city. Seen one and I think you have seen them all. Got through security in Amsterdam without a hitch. Here I set the alarms off and went through another pat down – they didn’t find anything of course. I am always amazed that I seem to set every second alarm structure off and yet people with multiple piercings ahead of me get through without setting off the alarm structure. It must be my magnetic personality.

Have found the washrooms – this is good. Found a place to buy some fruit salad for a late breakfast (bun and cheese on the plane – may be a breakfast of champions here but it is a disaster for people with my eating issues). So, a small fruit salad and a bottle of water (no diet coke anywhere) and it was $12.00 American. I think I am in the wrong business. However, it was just what the doctor ordered as there is now an hour’s wait still and then a 8.5 hour flight to Toronto (due to storm delays yesterday). Then a run from one terminal to the next to catch another flight – 3.5 hours – and I will be home. It is good as I preach tomorrow both in Regina and in Oxbow. Late last night I arranged someone to drive for me as I will be working with jet lag in a major way. Today was suppose to be the “jet lag day” but plans changed. So, I will be doing two services and 560 Km. tomorrow while my body adjusts to a major time shift and realizes it is day when it has been night and night when it has been day.

We have met some wonderful people from the country of Kazakhstan and it seems that they would like me to come to their nation to teach and prophesy – the city is Almaty. I looked at a rather incomplete map and found the country – tucked in below a part of Russia that juts out to the north of it and borders China on the west side of that large nation. I have no idea where the city of Almaty is but when I find a better map will look it up. It will be fun to now look on Goggle Earth to see where it is and also where we have been exactly in the last 15 days. Amazing geography and only by travelling am I learning where nations and cities really are – more than theory as I am living and visiting them.

Will write more as the trip progresses and time allows…

Added note: Since arriving home I have been invited to Crimea (a region in Ukraine) and Dniepropretrovsk (a city in Ukraine) as well as Moscow, Russia. Be in prayer, please.

Pressing in for the Presence

In one of Heidi Baker’s books she was speaking of “pressing in for the presence” and that phrase was planted deep in my heart the instant that I read it. It has come up a number of times as I have been walking and praying as well as when simply taking spiritual inventory and thinking through where I am spiritually with Him.

It seems to be that if, as believers, we spend our time pressing in for the Presence of God and settling for nothing less we would be then able to walk in the Spirit and fulfill the plans and call of God upon our lives. Moses had it right when he stated – during a conversation with God – The LORD replied, “My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.” Then Moses said to him, “If your Presence does not go with us, do not send us up from here. How will anyone know that you are pleased with me and with your people unless you go with us? What else will distinguish me and your people from all the other people on the face of the earth?” (Exodus 33:14-14 NIV).

If we will press in for the presence then those who walk in the ways of the world will know that we are different – good different and not weird and flacky different. And, they would come to know our God.

How does a person “press in for the presence”? I would suggest that it simply means to work at continuing to develop your personal relationship with the Lord. To be more in love with Him today than yesterday and not as much in love with Him as you will be tomorrow. It means spending quality (and a good quantity of) time with Him so that the relationship you have can deepen and mature, grow and develop. It means becoming aware of His thoughts and His heart towards you (and others).

It believe it means becoming so intimate with Jesus, so full of Him, that it does not matter what challenges in life present themselves to you – you will have everything you need and it will be found in Him. As Peter stated: “He gives us all that pretains to life and to godliness”.

I believe it means becoming so full of His love and presence that we will be so spiritually full that you can feed a multitude of other people’s needs out of your inner abundance.

And, as you give away what you have – He replenishes your supply of His love and presence so you will end up having even more to give tomorrow than you had to give away today. He did say, “It is more blessed to give than to receive” and that we would reap what we sow if we do not give in or give up.

Intimacy is the key to everything in the Christian life. Take some time today to begin pressing in for the presence.

Ukraine #16 – Amsterdam Overnight and On My Way to Paris

Instead of being in Regina and safely home I am still in Amsterdam, Holland. The flight from Kiev to Amsterdam was delayed for 1.5 hours (we sat in the plane at the Kiev International Airport). We then flew to Amsterdam where the weather problem was very real and the reason we were delayed. We ran hard and got to the gate while the plane to Minneapolis was still there. However, they had closed the gate and left 20+ people stranded.

We then spent over 5 hours standing in a very long “transfer” line attempting to get connections today (Saturday) to get us home as fast as possible. This has been a bit of a nightmare as the airlines had hundreds of people to process. And, they supplied us with water and sandwiches – and I can’t eat bread. Sucks to be me sometimes. Well, we got into line just before 4:00 p.m. and finished the transfer process at 9:00 p.m. Our team is divided up. We are flying the same routes but at different times. I am going to Paris, France then to Toronto and then to Regina. I am currently waiting for the gate to open and have already been through security. We board at 5:55 and I have been here since 5:00 to find my way around and get through security. I got to bed finally at 11:30 p.m. and got up at 4:00 a.m. A bit of a short night Currently eating a Snickers bar as that is all I could find in the few stores that are open at this hour. Pornography, jewelry, perfume, booze and smokes are available everywhere but not food. And nothing to drink except Starbucks – only coffee place open at this early hour and I simply can’t drink their coffee. I will never enter the modern world I guess.

It is now snowing. Yesterday it was 100 Km winds, rain and freezing rain. It is still my hope to get out of here today as hotel rooms are $225.00 American a night and that is a bit pricy for me. It is time to go home. I packed everything in my checked baggage and they have been nicely stored here (unavailable) and will be put automatically on the right flights (I hope) today. So, same clothes and I would kill for a toothbrush and some toothpaste. I packed one book thinking it would be enough – the rest are in the luggage. And with the delay in Kiev and then this long day without my team to talk to I will soon be finished the book I do have with me. So, time to write some more teachings as I do have my Bible with me and a note pad. Due to electrical plug connections (and the adaptor being packed with our clothes and thus unavailable) I am not able to recharge the laptop so it has a five hour life span for the battery and I have 23 hours of travel today as we travel across a number of time zones and live the same 8 hours twice. I gained an hour yesterday between Kiev and Amsterdam. So, 5:55 a.m. here at the airport and 10:55 p.m. (the previous day in my home city). The world is interesting. The flight from Paris to Toronto is 9 hours and I will arrive in Toronto one hour after I take off from Charles de Gaulle International Airport on my way to Toronto.

Long day but it will be good to be home – if all the connections are made and the weather cooperates. Otherwise I might find myself somewhere else for the night. Canada never looked so good.

Once last travel log tomorrow and I am already working on my “musings, impressions and thoughts” about my trip to Ukraine now that it is virtually over and I have had two days of travel so far and time to think about things.

Pee In The Bottle

In my city the public transport buses have space on both sides that you can rent for advertising whatever your product happens to be. The government and the health district rent a lot of these moving billboards (as well as regular roadside billboards) to teach young men and women what they need to do to prevent catching sexually transmitted diseases. Or, in some cases, to find out if you already have a sexually transmitted disease. It’s as easy as 1-2-Pee (in the bottle). One must admit that some of the ads are fairly creative.

I wonder how an advertising campaign on these moving billboards would work if we ere to advertise the Christian faith in a similar manner. I know, I need more to do with my time. However, can’t help it – my mind just does these kinds of mental gymnastics on a daily basis … only some of them actually come out as workable ideas. All of them are quite imaginative and creative (but then I am biased). Most never become public – but I enjoy them!

We could run an ad for STD’s as well. Saved – Transformed – Delivered.

We could talk about being save and knowing that you are safe using the same 1-2-Pee and change it just a bit to 1-2-3 P’s…

The first “P” would be be “Peace” with God that comes through being saved and and the peace of God that comes by being transformed into a “new creature in Christ”.

The second “P” would be “Power” that can transform your mind and heart and deliver a person out of a life-style where you are destroying yourself and going to Hell whether you know it or not.

The third “P” would be for “Purity” which would prevent a person from having to think about going and “peeing in a bottle” to find out of they have a STD.

I could be on to something here!

Himpossible

I ran across a t-shirt slogan – but more than a slogan – recently. Been thinking about it a lot! It is a play on the word “impossible” which I have never liked. In fact, one pastor even commented that he had cut it out of his office dictionary because “with God nothing is imposible”. I believe that!

So, if with Him all things are possible then it is not ‘impossible’ but “Himpossible”. Neat eh? Some people are just so creative when it comes to these neat phrases that say so much in so few words. I wish I had thought this one up as I think it is really special. In fact, I think I’m going to get some t-shirts made up with this (and a cross) on the front and back. Good witness, I think! Terrific truth!

I am finding that many do not really believe that with Him all things are possible.

I have been studying and preaching on authority and power recently. And, as I have been studying it I came to realize that if we really believed that “ALL authority (and thus power) is given to us” then we would be much bolder in where we go, who we talk to, what we say, and how we live our Christian life. We would not be afraid to witness for Jesus anywhere and everywhere because getting people saved is “Himpossible”. So, we should witness expecting people to get saved. Small town, big city, know them personally or total strangers – everything is possible … “Himpossible”. Expect results!

We would be praying for the sick every opportunity we have and no matter how difficult the situation appears. We should pray for the sick and expect people to be healed because with Him it is “Himpossible”.

Cast out demons expecting them to instantly leave without a fight – “Himpossible”.

Growing a Church by seeing people saved and truly converted and then hungry to learn and be discipled – “Himpossible” because Jesus said “I will build My Church”.

But the question is – do we BELIEVE it. Do we BELIEVE the Bible and what it says about us as BELIEVERS? Do we BELIEVE what Jesus said in John 14:12 “Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do…” “Himpossible”

When we receive a prophetic Word from the heart of God through the ministry of an apostle or prophet that gives direction to our lives and calls upon us to move forward, upward and out … do we believe it is “Himpossible” or simply read it and inwardly decide that it is impossible?

When we look at our nations and they are sliding, in many ways, into the sewer morally and ethically – do we think (know) that with the Gospel we can change the flow and move the country to higher ground as men like Wilberforce did with the issue of slavery? “Himpossible” or imposible?

It is time we started to believe the book – our Bible. Read it and obey it and stand back in awe as our God moves and touches people’s lives. It is time we started expecting God to do what He said He would do. It is time to stop looking at situations and by our inaction and poor attitude declare that it is impossible. Never! Everything is “Himpossible”. We need to start walking by faith and not by sight. We need to start being ambassadors of Jesus Christ knowing that behind His delegated authority lies the power of Heaven ready to back us up.

Time to have faith in the Jesus whom we follow and believe what He spoke and speakes. He asked once “when the Son of Man comes will He find faith on earth?” (Luke 18:8). Good question.

Good question – and each one of us needs to answer it for ourselves. Me, I have answered it already – I actually have come, in the past few weeks, to a greater level of faith than I have ever had before in my entire 32 year walk with the Author and Finisher of my faith. I am believing for more, doing more as I step out in faith, and, as a result, seeing more things actually happen than I have in many years of walking by sight without a spiritual backbone.

Ukraine #15 – Day Is Done, Gone the Sun

November 21, 2008

Arrived back in a suburb of Kiev – can’t remember it’s name. As feared, as soon as we arrived at the home of these kind folks to eat and stay the night before flying out in the morning (24 hours in the sir and in airports), I was instantly approached by someone who had a prophetic word for me. One of the young people from the local church in Boyorka came with him as he speaks decent English and so we were able to communicate. But, then came the questions about prophecy, the gifts of healings, what happens when… It was a good meeting but not exactly what you want after 9 hours straight on the road in the back seat of an SUV. No rest for the wicked. But, I understand as they are excited about God and what He is doing in and through them.

Had a great supper with some tremendous people who are hosting us for the night in their home. Then a discussion regarding the new church buildings they are planning to build in the next 9 months to house a growing congregation and a growing school. Again, never off duty – although I was very interested in their plans and then we prayed for them and the plans.

Now, 9:15 p.m. I’m ready for bed having located the bathroom we are to use and the place where the morning shower can be had – and so I have the place well figured out (it is a somewhat palatial home) and will get up at 5:45 for a hot shower – fresh, clean clothes (last set), a coffee Ukrainian style (Starbucks is tame compared to this stuff – and I have not even tried the espresso coffee they have here yet). In fact, don’t think I ever will. Don’t like coffee that much and don’t need a jolt of caffeine to get going in the morning. I’m naturally up and at it before the alarm I set even goes off.

So, an 8 hour sleep before a long day tomorrow (the 21st) on flights from Kiev to Amsterdam, from Amsterdam to Minneapolis and then Minneapolis to Regina. Home just as Friday in Saskatchewan turns into Saturday although my body time will be telling me it is 9:00 a.m. in the morning on Saturday. Saturday is going to be a long day of jet lag and catch up. Then off and running on Sunday with two services to do – Regina and Oxbow.

More from the airport in Minneapolis when I can finally connect to the internet for the first time in 15 days.

Ukraine #14 – A Long and Winding Road

November 20, 2008

The day has started. A cold shower – don’t know what happened to the hot water but this is not unusual in Ukraine. Even the water itself is shut off in one part of the city while another part gets to use it because the water supply and the water pressure does not allow the whole city to be hooked in at the same time. Power is sometimes managed the same way. Now hot chocolate and time to think and blog. I’m packed and ready to go. Our ride picks us up at 7:30 a.m. and we will arrive in Boyorka at 9:00 p.m. at the latest. This is good.

The drive will be a bit awkward as the driver does not speak English and we don’t speak Russian. On the way down we had an interpreter but we don’t have that luxury on the way back. However, it should make for a quieter ride and an opportunity to think and process the last two weeks worth of events. As we don’t minister again here I can relax a bit and be “off duty” although everywhere you go and everyone you meet who knows what I can do of course wants me to “pray” for them – which translated into Kingdomize means “prophesy”. So, hopefully, I will actually have the day off ministering and be able to rest, think, ponder and process.

It is almost 8:00 a.m. here on Thursday. That makes it almost 11:00 p.m. on Wednesday back home. It will be strange tomorrow as we get on our second flight around 3:00 p.m. and then fly for 9+ hours to arrive in Minneapolis around 5:00 p.m. because of the 9 hour difference. It means living the same 9 hours twice. Very confusing to the body and results in jet lag …. And hopefully a lot of sleep on Saturday (Sunday body time). Sermon is ready – wrote it on the plane on the way here and in the first four days in this location computerized and finalized it. In fact, it has become a two part series and both sermons for the next two Sundays are completed. That will help with the first week back.

It has been an adventure. Lives have been changed forever – including mine. This visit after a number of years not being here has rekindled my love for Ukraine and the people of this great nation. And, I am planning numerous trips back in 2009. The first will be in February when we will be ministering in the same two churches as this trip – but, most likely, on the topic of “The Prophetic Wars” talking on the attack against the prophetic gifts and ministry and the reestablishment of the office of prophet. This attack includes four spirits – the spirit of Jezebel, the spirit of Absalom, the spirit of religion and tradition as well as the Leviathan spirit. If Bob comes with me we will have him spend two days straight teaching the material he did at a Leaders Day in Moose Jaw for the leaders of Life Builders Network.

On this next trip I have also arranged (last night) to do a two day youth conference here in The Father’s Blessing Church. The kids (see yesterday’s blog) are already arranging the event and expect several hundred to attend. I have asked them to be sure that many of them are unsaved as that is what I felt the Lord wants and where I should be aiming my messages on the first of two days. I am excited.

I’m called to minister to youth and to disciple, mentor and equip them into full maturity in the Christian faith and in their individual callings. To do so with this generation (ages 16 to 30) in Canada is almost impossible. They receive a calling and sometimes are even told to hook in with me and learn from me and then I never hear from them. It is as I they don’t believe the word they received or they are too busy to do anything with it. As a result my talents and giftings are not being used even to 5% of their capacity. But over here people take the callings and plans and purposes of God very seriously and I could be very busy and spend my time doing what I know I am called to do.

So, instead of being frustrated by the lack of movement on prophetic words in Canada and the United States – I will simply come here and help the youth of this nation to do what they have been called to do. I am no longer going to wait and hope something changes in the young people who have been called into ministry in Canada – I will simply invest my time and my heart here in Ukraine where they appreciate what Jesus is doing, their opportunity to be involved with the King of kings as He moves upon people and in their lives. I will go where I am needed and appreciated.

Calgary – Day #3

It is Sunday morning and I am drinking coffee in a hotel room in Calgary. Service is at 12:30. The church I am with uses the facilities of another church and so the morning time slots are not available. Some time to think, pray and do a bit of catching up on the blog entries and responses.

Friday evening and all day Satuirday I have been teaching a conference / seminar on “God’s Gifts to You”. The outline is fairly logical

Friday Evening…
1> Sin and Separation
2> Being Born Again
3> Becoming Free of the Occult
4> Getting Free of Religious and Traditional Spirits
5> The Baptism in the Holy Spirit
6> Speaking in Tongues and Prophesy (Initial Signs)
7> Being Refilled and Refreshed Regularly

Saturday…
1> The Motivational Gifts (Romans 12)
2> The Charismatic Gifts (1 Corinthians 12)
3> The Five-Fold Ascension Gifts (Ephesians 4:11-12)
5> Other Gifts and Callings In the Bible
6> Therefore, Who You Are in Christ and in the Church
7> The Gift of Prophecy
A> What it is
B> Who is it For?
C> What is Needed to Prophecy?
D> How to Begin to Prophesy
E> How to Exercise the Prophetic Muscle
F> Things That Will Help You to Prophecy
G> Now What – Where Do I Begin?

Had a receptive (although small) bunch of people who had lots of questions and so the day and a half had a good dynamic to it and God really did clear a number of things up for people and free most of the participants from some major bondages and blockages during the “occult” and “Religious Spirit” sections. Much was learned, people were encouraged and God’s will was done. This church here in Calgary is reaching out and becoming an apostolic and prophetically based church of New Testament proportions.

Came back to my hotel for a night to myself. Went to sit in the hot tub to relax before working. No go. The hot tub and pool had been rented out to a special function. So, read for a while and then headed out to get a cold Diet Coke. I have been to this hotel often enough now to know where everything is – confectionary, Swiss Chalet, Humpties, Denny’s, and a walking path along a wonderful part of the river that runs through the city. Then to bed… I was tired and still fighting a head cold. New one since getting over the one I had in Ukraine.

Today – service, coffee to debrief, trip to the airport, supper with a young prophet-in-training, board the plane and arrive home at midnight local time. At the service I’m preaching and then, the Lord willing, prophesying over a number of people. This is my first time here on a Sunday so I am not sure what to expect in the service but am looking forward to bringing them the Word of the Lord from Isaiah 43:19 “Forget what happened long ago! Don’t think about the past. I am creating something new. There it is! Do you see it? I have puit toads in deserts, streams in thirsty lands.”

It will be a good day!

Ukraine #13 – Think, Pray, Write

November 20, 2008

It is time to start thinking through all that has happened on this trip. So far I have blogged as if I were writing a travel log or ministry events and happenings. Now it is time to let my thoughts settle and see what the Lord has shown me and what I sense about Ukraine and even about myself and the ministry He has called me to – both here and around the world.

Up to now the days have started early with preparation – sorting out the day’s teachings and deciding who was teaching what. That usually started at the end of the day before – 12:15 as we debriefed and thought through the day that was just finishing and looked forward to what was on the agenda for the day we were just entering. Then, by 6:30 I was up and at it – reviewing what I was teaching, changing and adjusting, praying and writing other notes for the sessions. The prophecy part of each session is not prepared ahead of time other than to pick some people out that you know will be a faith-builder for everyone if you speak into their life first.

Then shower and dress for the day because as soon as we leave the building we don’t return again until midnight when the whole routine starts over once again. The day is fairly routine – session with teaching and prophecy, meal and debrief; session with teaching and prophecy, meal and debrief; session with teaching and prophecy, snack (really another full meal) and debrief. Walk back to residence and meet up with the team who have been driven back and review the day and look forward. Not exciting but absolutely essential.

So, now that we are in to two travel days I can begin to think things through and process my thoughts and feelings. Many things changed in me and in the way I minister during this trip and so now it is time to let the feelings and the prophetic sense rise to the surface, take form and be recorded in words. Not easy – but I have many hours with a very tired team when I will have some quiet to do just what the doctor ordered – think, pray and write.

Just Wanting to Be Polite and Say Hi

I have gone back to exercising and taken membership out at a different place. The place I use to go, as I said in an earlier blog, is being renovated and is a mess. It also is now part of a large U.S.-Canada chain and I don’t like the atmosphere and hype that comes along with the new approach and ownership. So, found a much smaller place with very modern exercise equipment.

I have been going daily – good for the stress levels and the overall health. This is what I did for years – every day – and then in 2008 it just slowly disappeared from my daily schedule. Still on the the schedule as an event – but always ignored in favor of an appointment or more work. Summer was not so bad as the dog and I walked for miles each day – but he (and I) don’t like this weather for walking.

So, I’m changing to go in and exercise – finding my way around … outdoor shoes off at the door, lockers too small for winter coat so it goes at the main doors (it’s okay as only members have the electronic pass that opens the door and it registers who you are and thus we would know who stole what if…) the locker system (they are keyed and keys are at the front counter), the locker room (totally different – much smaller and with the lockers around the outside walls so more like your living room), the massive, open shower room does not exist (privacy at last – individual showers), not to mention all this new state-of-the-art equipment with built in cable t.v. and bring your own DVD and play it capbilities … maybe I’m just getting old. Everything is so new and so diferent and so European (at least from my hotel experiences in Europe).

But people are still the same. Because of the small room that serves as the change / locker room, conversations can start really easily. In fact, it seems rude not to say hi and start chatting because the room is so small and everyone is close – in the old place with hundreds of lockers people chose an end of the locker system where no one was currently changing. So, not wanting to be rude I started up a conversation with the one guy in changing at the same time I was. His name is Shane.

We chatted about the tattoo on his arm as people always want to talk about themselves, right? And in the five minutes it took to change I learned about his back injury, 2 years+ of physio and now a daily exercise routine. I learned that he comes about the same time every day (I am rearranging my schedule), and that he is 35 years old and wanting to do something with his life.

An hour and a bit later – I have been on the bike and the treadmill and he has been doing back exercises over in another area… we end up getting back into our street clothes at the same time. Further conversation about the tattoos and this time the earrings (one was in a different spot than most are) and we talked through the whole change time, to the door for wintercoats and outside shoes, down the stairs and then stood by the vehicles and chatted. I learned more about this man in two short conversations than I could have ever hoped to know … probably because of the safe and relaxed atmosphere of a gym locker room and the fact that the space was close and just he and I were in there at that time.

Just as I was leaving the locker room to go and exercise (a minute behind Shane) a First Nations fellow walked in and he had both arms totally tattooed… so guess what I did. I stayed behind and chatted with him as well for a few minutes before getting on the bike. Don’t do the bike for my heart’s sake as it was already racing – having started two new conversations on my first day at this new place.

Will be looking for both of them later today – just to say “hi” of course!