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Conversation with God Freedom Healing Joy Ministry Worship

What Does it Mean?

What does it mean when someone has been healed or set free and you see them light up? Is it just gladness for their improvement? Gladness, yes. Being lit up? Might it mean more?

What does it mean when they have Holy Spirit? In biblical terms, in the Greek, they have experienced sozo. Which can mean that they have been healed, set free, even saved. Does that mean all of these or only one of these things? I wonder….

Maybe they just have Holy Spirit on them, helping them heal or be set free. Could be. Like the prophets in the Hebrew Scriptures, they have Holy Spirit on them just for a bit? Or in them? I wonder…and I do not know, yet.

So I will watch. If after being set free and being healed, they stay lit up with Holy Spirit evident in their lives over a period of time, there is a greater chance that they have Holy Spirit in them and not just on them for a brief time. Meaning it is more likely that they have been saved. I wonder, as I watch for such things, what will I discover and see before me that is obvious? I do not know, and I wonder.

I do know this for a certainty. God is more merciful than we are. God loves more and better than we do. And I do know this: God’s theology is wider, more inclusive and more generous than the theology of we human beings.

And so, I wonder. I will ask our Lord. I will listen. And I will watch people who have received ministry with wonderful success. I will see Fruit of Holy Spirit, or not. I will see obvious evidence of Holy Spirit in them, or not.

And I do not know what will become obvious.

Even if it’s only some ministered to who have such evidence of Holy Spirit, and not all or even most, I will rejoice.

And if I cannot identify any with certainty and confidence that they have Holy Spirit…what will I do? I will rejoice!

For our Lord has saved many of us. Has ministered to many of us. And Jesus is still Immanuel, God with us. And he is coming! Hallelujah!

Categories
Holy Spirit Kingdom of God Ministry

Minister Before You Minister

https://www.findshepherd.com/Jesus-begins-his-ministry.html

Jesus would create a context where ministry could take place, and he often did this first. Before he did what people recognized as his official acts of ministering to the needs of particular people.

For instance, he would preach the Good News of the Kingdom of God and often instructed us to do this and then heal the sick and free the bound.

He would ask questions such as, “Do you want to be healed?

He would clear a room, maybe even a house, of people without faith for raising the dead – before raising the dead.

He would tell stories, parables. He would teach.

As a coach, teacher, leader, father, husband – in many roles and ways, I have noticed that the context seems to limit and control what can happen. If what is happening is not sufficiently good, re-create the context.

He created a context for ministry, with Holy Spirit, and you can, too.

Categories
Conversation with God Discipleship Hearing God Holy Spirit Joy Learning Ministry Miracles

Rest and Dream

Rest and dream. Be inspired. Like Jesus.

Artwork by Greg Olson

Pause. Just rest and watch the sky.

Categories
Discipleship Getting Help Leadership Learning Ministry Prayer

Discipling like Jesus

Jesus had a pattern for making disciples. We can see some of it in Scriptures, and we can make educated guesses to fill in some details. How he taught was common to Hebrew teachers, rabbi’s, in those days.

I’ve spoken with seasoned disciple makers and missionaries who’ve done this, and they helped me get an even better practical picture.

First, as with everything, get guidance. Then pray. Pray with clear prayer targets – such as successful disciple making of disciples who make yet more disciples.

The basic pattern is simple: show, tell, and do. Probably even explain, show, discuss. Repeat until they are ready to do.

When you care, being a disciple is easy. (Good Friday by Anita Brown.)

The pattern is not classroom instruction, reading about or learning about things. It’s being shown, discussion before and after. It’s learning to do what you do. With an explanation. It is not learning about things. Theory isn’t nearly enough.

It might have worked something along these lines:

  • First, discuss what you will do, what they will see, especially so they know what to look for, what is significant.
  • Demonstrate in front of them, so they can see.
  • Third, discuss how it went. How it was as you’d hoped and expected, things that were different. Issues and complications, if any; and especially how it went well.
  • Let them ask questions as part of this discussion. Answer.
  • Maybe show them several times. Is often a good idea, especially with something new.
  • Send them out to go do as you did.
  • Have them report back to you. Let them ask questions. Make comments so they learn even more. (If they rejoice that even demons do as they command, give them the perspective that yes, this is good, and that it is even more important that their names are written in heaven – for instance.)
  • Send them out again.
  • Repeat this cycle until all are satisfied that good learning has taken place.

Disciple making is demonstration with explanation. Then they demonstrate, and ask questions, and you give additional perspective as is useful.

Disciple making is not a classroom activity. It is not talking about things. It’s being shown and then doing as shown. With explanations as is useful.

Additional notes:

  • Train disciples in how to make disciples. They will demonstrate. Disciples multiply by themselves, making disciples.
  • Disciples normally go out and minister in pairs. Ministry is normally in pairs. Always minister in pairs when you can. The more senior is making a disciple of the less experienced person. The less senior person assists and helps the more senior. This gives them something useful to do and provides practical help.
  • When ministering, when one talks, the other prays for the one ministering. Results are much better this way.
  • Grab someone out of a crowd who is watching, if you have no one else. Let them assist you and pray for you while you minister. Help them learn and discuss what happened. Not just ministering, always teaching.
  • A prayer support group is even more helpful. Set one up. If nothing else, find local people who are sympathetic and ask for their prayer support.
  • Prayer support is primarily for the minister, so they are more inspired and do well. They will do better. The people praying will pay more attention as they are invested, and they will learn more. Prayer is not primarily for the person being ministered to, as tempting as this may be. It could be helpful, but not nearly as helpful as praying for the person ministering.

Go, and make disciples. Make mistakes. Admit them and discuss them, so everyone can learn from them: we learn a lot through mistakes. Share the learning, and do not hold back such a wonderful opportunity. And of course celebrate what goes well!

This is the pattern that Jesus used. Go, and do the same.

And, there is a next step….

Categories
Key Article Ministry

Ministering as Jesus Taught

Share the Good News of the Kingdom of God.

In that context, in that situation and with the atmosphere created, heal the sick and free prisoners (do exorcisms).

So simple, but done by too few people these days.

Yet this is the normal pattern of Ministry that Jesus teaches us to start with.

Compassion is key; Jesus modeled compassion for us frequently. Go review how often he did this in the bible, you can use a search engine like Google to do this, which is effective and free.

You have been given power and authority. Use these in ministry. Speak to sickness and tell it what to do, laying hands on someone when you can – to help them connect your faith with the Anointing. To be whole and healed. Speak to unclean spirits and tell them what to do: leave, and not return.

Those who are willing to learn and act on what they are learning – to do what they are learning about – can become disciples, people who learn and act on and do what they have been learning about.

These disciples can gather together, love one another, pray for each other, eat and worship together. Pray for the surrounding community. Minister to nearby people. Healing the sick, freeing the bound. Gathered disciples who meet together become new centers of ministry and love. Who purposely change the culture around them so that the Kingdom of God expands, more people become Christians. Who in turn love and minister to yet others, continuing the cycle of Jesus loving others and ministering to others through you and the people who learn through you and do the same.

Categories
Ministry Miracles Prayer Presence of God Worship

Worship & Prayer

aaron-burden-lPCu8HnGU2E-unsplash

So…prayer is conversation, two-way conversation, with God.

What is worship?

I remember someone telling me that worship is giving highest worth. Highest Worth-ship. So putting the Kingdom of God first is very close to, related to, or maybe sometimes even the same as worship.

This seems to be correct, as I easily found this:

“The most commonly cited definition of the word “worship” is based on the etymology of the English word: “Worship” is derived from the Old English word “woerthship.” So, when we worship God, we are proclaiming (or giving him back) his worth.”

https://thinkingworship.com/2011/04/25/worship-theology-101-whats-in-a-word/

“So, when we worship God, we are proclaiming (or giving him back) his worth.” Wow.

And the experience of worship helps us experience our relationship with God more intimately and closely.

Worship is actually very simple. Powerful. Good for us. Has wonderful side effects, including:

Prayer – two way conversation with God is easier and more powerful.

As we gaze upon Him, it gradually transforms us into becoming more like him.

Healing and other ministry is easier in such a context.

Miracles come more easily in such an atmosphere.

Fellowship and brotherly love increases, easily.

The Presence of God is much more powerfully experienced.

Baptism in Holy Spirit easily changes people forever.

We experience heaven and being in the Presence of God with ease.

The Aaronic blessing becomes real to us!

23 “Speak to Aaron and to his sons, saying, ‘Thus you shall bless the sons of Israel. You shall say to them:

24 The Lord bless you, and keep you;

25 The Lord make His face shine on you,
And be gracious to you;

26 The Lord lift up His countenance on you,
And give you peace.’

27 So they shall [a]invoke My name on the sons of Israel, and I then will bless them.”

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Numbers+6%3A23-27&version=NASB

Having God’s face shine upon you and his countenance on you is, I have been told often, a way in Hebrew to talk about the Presence of God.

Experiencing God face to face – so intimately and personally, is this not the essence of being in heaven? Being in the Presence of God so intimately and personally, with such closeness? What can be better?

Categories
Blessings Multiply Church Life Discipleship Ministry Prayer

After Disciplemaking – What?

So now they (disciples) have transformed your Christian life through your learning to and the practice of making of disciples. So much changes when we do this. It’s exhilarating, joyous, fun and very, very encouraging. You learn a lot! You grow tremendously. This is a major step on your Christian journey, and this changes your life for the better. You are more rich for the rest of your life when you are making disciples.

What’s next?

  • Continuing to grow in applying Spiritual Gifts?
  • Continuing to grow in faith and applying faith?
  • Continuing to learn to get to know our Lord more?
  • Continuing growth in learning who you are in him?

Yes! All these are not only good, they interact with each other. There is synergistic growth – growth that multiplies and often grows exponentially. These are not only all good, they each provide what can be a wonderful pathway for a lifetime of growth on earth and into eternity.

And yes, there are other steps after Proclaiming the Good News that Jesus Taught. There is following the progression of things that Jesus taught and showed us so often and so wonderfully well, such as healing the sick & freeing the bound, (cleansing lepers and raising the dead), and the making of disciples of all people groups – all kinds of people. (See The Great Commission at Matthew 28.)

He showed this next step with the 12 and the 70, and more…and Paul showed step this every time he planted a local church.

What is this next step? Community and the expansion of Community. Why? Because it roots all Christian Community into the Trinity Community of Father, Son, & Holy Spirit. Or at least resonates with these Persons. And we all crave community and grow best in community – even us introverts!

Without this next step, churches stagnate and grow smaller. Too many are closing. The lack of this is the major reason evangelization is too often too hard these days, and yields so little fruit with too much work.

Ecclesias! Ecclesias enforce the standards and method of the Kingdom of God and results in the rapid and healthy spread of Christian Community.

Ecclesias made of disciples who encourage, support and edify one another. Who socialize, share Communion, and who serve one another.

Ecclesias are the major driving element that results in New Testament speeds of making new Christians and planting new local churches.

What’s their first gigantic step in serving each other and in serving others, resulting in so much marketplace ministry that the Ecclesias reach so many and transform the people they touch through Jesus and born again into the Kingdom of God?

Prayer. Massive amounts of loving and faith filled prayer. Prayer for one another. Prayer for others they know about. Prayer for community people they network with and can so easily touch. People who need help and have needs. Oh, yes! People with needs who are thus prayer and ministry targets.

What are prayer and ministry targets? Prayer for and ministry to people and situations where you can see the wanted results as the Kingdom of God spreads.

Massive prayer precedes and results in people being sent. Sent to share the Gospel, to minister, to make new Christians, disciples, form ecclesias that result in the planting of local churches.

Categories
Blessings Multiply Calling Ministry Success

Realize & Accept Who You Are Called To?

When you finally realize and accept who God called you to minister to, who God equipped you to minister to, and who are the people group in your heart, you will:

  • When you find who God calls you to, you will find your love and enjoyment through.
  • You will find love streaming through your heart to them.
  • The love of God flows through you and ministers to them.
  • You know you are authentic and real and so is your love, when you discover and accept who God called you to serve.
  • Many people are waiting for you and for the message God is giving you. Reaching them is easy when you accept this.
  • You reach them with the smile of God.
  • You are gifted to serve them and to minister to them.
  • God gifted these people to receive through you.
  • Love pours out to them, and from them to you. That’s the love of God.

Categories
Holy Spirit Intercession Ministry Miracles

A Secret to Powerful Ministry

There are a few secrets to powerful ministry. This is one.

I am surprised & delighted at how many powerful ministries do this.

When I remember to get this done, even a little, my ministry is stronger, better, more powerful. I am more gifted and smarter. The people I serve pull out the best in me so well they help me do my best – better than I knew I could do. I learn a lot through the people I am ministering to.

It’s simple. Prayer support. The more prayer support the better!

Here are some ideas about how to do this:

  • Jesus sent people in pairs to minister, and he gave us this standard. You minister with someone else; this is how you normally do ministry with the standard set by Jesus. So while one talks, the other prays – for the person ministering. That Holy Spirit inspires and helps.
  • When you go somewhere to minister, have your personal and ministry intercessor teams pray for you and your ministry. You and your family are more safe when prayed for. Ministry is more powerful, effective and inspired when you prayed for.
  • At a place of ministry, have intercessors. Always, always, always have a ministry prayer team. If no one else, have your ministry partner pray. Add people who are there already. Even non-believers. (Doing this plants powerful seeds in non-believers.)
  • When teaching in a local church or elsewhere, ask some to intercede for you. Ask everyone to pray for you also, that you minister with more inspiration, love and power.

Many of us expect that intercessors should pray for the person being ministered to. My experience and that of some I’ve learned from tells me it’s most effective that the power of prayer goes through you to the person being ministered to. Explore this and find out for yourself.

Categories
Anointing Calling Joy Ministry Success Vocation

Favor of God in Show Business

I have a brilliant friend, Herb Otter, Jr. – who has long been in show business. Says he often gets terrible reviews and people talk about not wanting him. Yet they keep calling him back to perform more. He has had as much business as he could handle.

How does this happen, you might wonder?

I am sure I know why. He has Jesus in him; he expresses Jesus often. He has Holy Spirit in him and on him.

He also considers his audience; on purpose he gives them fun and shows the value of improvising. He also teaches, encourages, and reminds us all to have fun and to improvise.

Personally, I have long suspected that this is his mission: to teach, encourage and remind us to improvise and have fun. It’s a brilliant way to live!

Also…this sounds to me a lot like the work of Holy Spirit that he’s teaching and encouraging. This is an important part of how Holy Spirit operates in us, and through us, and in our lives.