(and Prophetic Churches Must Emerge to Fill the Void)
Recently on a trip to Kazakhstan I had the honour of being in a service where the people of God prayed for a team of 14 who were heading to Mongolia on a “mission trip” to win the lost and establish house churches. I later had the privilege of speaking at length with and then prophesy over two of those involved – a couple who work in an orphanage in Kazakhstan and pastor a house church. They were excited about the 42 hour bus ride they were about to embark on to reach the nation of Mongolia and the people there who have never head of Jesus.
Paul writes, “I make it my ambition to preach the gospel, not where Christ has already been named, lest I build on someone else’s foundation, but as it is written, ‘Those who have never been told of him will see, and those who have never heard will understand.’”
The Passion Translation reads: “It is my honour and constant passion to be a pioneer who preaches where no one has ever even heard of the Anointed One, instead of building upon someone else’s foundation. As the Scriptures say: ‘Those who know nothing about him will clearly see him, and those who have not heard will respond (understand).’”
As I move along in my own ministry I find my passion changing. I was prophetically told that I was now in the third and final season of my ministry and that I would see many changes and much would be new. I love teaching the saints. I really greatly appreciate training, equipping, and mentoring young people in their calling to change the world. There is much that I do and have done that is both enjoyable and beneficial to the Kingdom. However, recently I have found myself impatient with the saints who simply sit and learn and seldom do anything with what they have learned. Saints who have lost their passion and zeal for Jesus and His cause. I am finding less value and even less satisfaction in giving just another teaching and then another teaching and then…
Recently in the city of Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan I had the honour of speaking to some campus leaders and some of the Christian students whom they lead. In the group were a number of new believers – less than two weeks old. Alive, hungry, full of questions. We spoke about the baptism in the Holy Spirit and the gifts of the Spirit and answered many questions. Afterwards, I had the opportunity to speak with and prophesy over the leaders of the university campus ministry. Again, powerful. Here was part of the feedback:
“It was tremendous the move of the Holy Spirit after your visit of my team and students. You remember a student said that he had visions before becoming a believer and he has them after. That night Ersultan and the rest of my team and some students cast out demons from that student for 3 hours. It was shocking the way demons reacted in him. Then yesterday we continued casting out the rest major 2 demons and a devil from him for 2 hours. Everyone saw visions and then we prayed over students to release speaking in tongues, after worshipped together and the room filled with the presence of the Holy Spirit. It’s amazing the move of the Spirit which is a starting…”
In my heart of hearts this is where I want to be. I want to minister where the gospel has not been heard. I want to see the lost saved and raised up into new life. New expressions of the Church planted. I want to speak to new believers who are hungry to be trained and equipped and to learn more. I want to see churches that have not heard the true Gospel of the Kingdom come alive for the first time and embrace their divine destiny. I want to see the true Church that Jesus is building rise up and impact the community where they are located. I want to work with leaders who are wanting to go somewhere and do something significant for the King and the Kingdom. I want to mentor young people who are hungry for more and want to fully embrace the future that God has planned for them. Young people who are not satisfied with what is and are reaching for what could be. Young people who are wanting to see the lost won to Jesus and their nations transformed by the Gospel.
Don’t get me wrong – I love what I am doing right now. I teach, I pray, I prophesy … but most of the churches I work with are not reaching the lost. And, to be honest, they really don’t have any interest in doing so. Add to that the obvious fact that little is changing in their lives and it leads to a bit of frustration on my part. Not to mention being somewhat bored teaching the same things and seeing nothing change.
So, as I enter the third and last stage of my 40+ years of ministry I am sensing a major change as I move into a serious season of raising up young people and training them to be world changers as they risk their life and take the Gospel of the Kingdom to places that have never heard the true Gospel. I will fade slowly from a lot of what I am currently doing. I will move forward embracing the new opportunities that have already begun to open up for me in the ministry – church planting in Canada, training young church planters in Viet Nam, working with campus ministries in Kazakhstan, and continuing to work with churches that truly are committed to the expansion of the Kingdom and are not simply maintaining the sheep and staying safe and comfortable.
Change is never easy. But, in my life, I am welcoming and embracing this season of change and look forward to all the adventures it will lead me into.
We have been looking at the way we build churches and the way Jesus builds His Church. There is a vast difference. If need be – go back to previous editions of Churchquake and have a look at what we have been discussing together these last few weeks. Today, let’s take a look at the traditional way we have almost always worked – seeing the lost saved and beginning a church with them. Read more
As I have been ministering here in Ohio I have been thinking about Jesus, Christians, and the Church in the nation of Canada and the United States. My thoughts have run something like this…
In this age of instant communication and on-line connecting and relationships it is easy to forget to simply pray. We can become so caught up in connecting with others that we forget to connect with the Author of all life who sent His Son to die for us so that we would have a way to connect, communicate and build relationally. God has never phoned me on my iPhone, texted me, used instant message, or placed a comment on my Facebook page or Twitter account. Maybe He is just not into current technology – He still prefers us to speak with Him face-to-face as a man speaks with his friend (Exodus 33:11). So, let’s not forget “iTalk” as we enter a fresh new year. Read more
We have been living with an Arctic Front settled over our area bring the temperatures to around the -40C for a week. As I am writing this they are forecasting that it will warm up a bit shortly but “warm up” is a relative term. So, -25C is “warm.” Not in my understanding. It is still cold and the older I get the less I like the cold. I have always enjoyed ‘hot’ over ‘cold.’ Read more