I preach and teach a lot. I lover to study, research, dig in and dig through God’s word looking for the truth that the people I am going to minister to need to hear – that God wants them to hear through my words. Of course, my words are a result of God’s Spirit guiding and directing my study and my receiving the revelation that the Spirit shows me. I simply wrap words around the Spirit’s revelation of God’s word.
To get a decent teaching that actually expresses God’s heart takes a good, focused 10 to 15 hours. It takes prayer, focused digging, writing and rewriting, then polishing and changing an expression here and a phrase there to better express what I believe God is saying. When it is all done it then gels for a day or two and then suffers through one more rewrite and a lot of prayer before it is ready.
Some time ago when I was finished another great teaching I heard God say, “You have done well. You have spent the week studying My Word and you have done well in the way you have handled My Word and expressed the revelation I have shown you. You are ready to minister to others… but, you didn’t take a few hours to study My Word on a personal level so I could minister to you.”
That comment hit home. I spend many hours in God’s Word for the ministry He has called me to and given to me. However, I often fail to take quiet time every day in the same Word to let His Holy Spirit minister to me personally. So, I recently made some major, solid changes to my routine and the way I approach my day and my ministry. I have cut a number of things out of my day, stopped doing some things that were good but I don’t want just the good – I want the best. I want the best for my life and my walk with God. And, I know that when I have that, I will also have a much stronger, deeper, and more powerful ministry for The Lord. But, more importantly, a stronger and deeper relationship with The Lord.
It is not easy to cut back on the things you like to do so that you have more time for the things are essential to do to stay spiritually healthy, alert, and alive. It is not easy to break the comfort zone to enter back into a place that can be and often is challenging and stretching. It is not always easy to say no to people who want to talk or connect electronically from this nation and that nation… But, I have entered a season where I sense the next breakthrough is just around the corner and that I would be wise and it would be prudent to step back a bit, refocus, and prepare myself for what The Lord has planned. What His plans are I don’t know and I don’t need to know. I know the current step He is asking me to take and I and adjusting rapidly to enable me to obey. That’s all I need to know.
As this blog is published I will be reading my Bible and spending time with The Lord as I fly from Toronto to Istanbul, Turkey… it’s a night flight so it will be quiet.