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America Fresh Oil New Wine Living It Out In Real Time Miracles Out of Nowhere Spiritual Warfare The Bible The Big Event The Life of Faith The Mysteries of God The Secret Place Through The Looking Glass

Good enough to fail?

Throughout history, success or failure is often determined by someone or something being where they are supposed to be when they are supposed to be there. From sports to warfare to our personal lives, being where you are supposed to be can make a “destiny difference”.

D-DayOn June 6, 1944, the success of Operation Overlord (what we commonly refer to as D-Day) can be largely attributed to the fact that personnel and equipment were where they were supposed to be, when they were supposed to be there.

Operation Market GardenConversely, the failure of Operation Market Garden (famously depicted in the movie A Bridge Too Far) just three months later can be blamed, in large part, on the inability to get men and supplies where they needed to be in order to support troop movements and actions. Although Operation Market Garden was actually a larger operation, it failed to meet it’s objective and expedite the end World War II.

In sports, the difference between a team winning and losing a game has often come down to a player not being in his proper place when he was needed. Super Bowls have been won and lost for this very reason.

Even in the Bible, a seemingly insignificant decision made a difference we can follow across generations.

Look at King David.

2 Samuel 11:1 says…

In the spring, at the time when kings go off to war,
David sent Joab out with the king’s men and the whole Israelite army.
They destroyed the Ammonites and besieged Rabbah.
But David remained in Jerusalem.

“At a time when kings go off to war”.

King DavidThis would imply that David, as king and leader of the army, should have been with his army, Instead, he decided to hang back, and relax in the confines of his palace in Jerusalem. While there was not necessarily anything inherently wrong with being where he was (in his palace), by not being in his proper place, it allowed him to fall into temptation, and subsequently sin with Bathsheba. Not being where he was supposed to be opened the door for sin, and changed the destinies of Uriah the Hittite, Bathsheba, David himself, and an entire nation.

Awakened by the SpiritMaybe there is nothing inherently wrong with where you are… it’s just not where you are supposed to be. For me, as a burned-out Southern Baptist preacher in 1989, a perfectly acceptable place for me to be would have been at home with my family. However, where I was supposed to be was in Glorietta, New Mexico. Being there, and my subsequent encounter with the Holy Spirit as a result, changed my future, my ministry, and my life.

So where are you supposed to be?

Are you doing a good thing, just not the right thing?

Do you always feel like there is something more — that you are missing the mark even though you are succeeding where you are?

Are you doing good enough to fail?

I’ve heard it said that “good enough is the enemy of great”. Are you in an environment that thrives on good enough, but never seems to get beyond that ceiling to the open skies of unlimited possibility?

We are called to an abundant life in Christ, not a life of mediocrity. We are called to be overcomers, not settlers. We are called to a place of destiny and purpose, not a life on the fringes. Jesus said in John 10…

The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy.
I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.

Stop giving in to the dream-thieves. Stop listening to the voices that tell you this is all there is. Stop being content to settle for good enough. Get to that place of destiny and purpose you are meant for — that you are called to— and the future God has in store for you could be something more amazing than you could have ever imagined.

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America Fresh Oil New Wine 2014 Living It Out In Real Time Miracles Out of Nowhere The Bible The Life of Faith The Mysteries of God The Secret Place

Will the Real Jesus Please Show Up?

Go with me here…

Imagine if Jesus were a guest speaker in the average church. First, ever the good Samaritan, He may be running slightly late, having stopped to help some unfortunate family stranded  by the side of the road. When He finally arrives, He catches some cold stares from folks lingering in the vestibule. They notice that He isn’t wearing a suit and tie, but the work clothes of a carpenter (now stained with dirt, oil, and grease from the encounter with the unfortunate family’s broken down vehicle).

We hurry Jesus to the pastor’s office where we hand Him our bulletin. With a smile at the corners of His lips, He gives our printed order of worship a passing glance, and mumbles, “We’ll see.”

The choir begins the call to worship, and we walk in with Him. Suddenly, several individuals begin to scream and cry out, “Jesus, why have you come to torment us?” They fall at His feet, writhing and crying out. Everyone stares at the scene, trying to guess what Jesus will do. Will He deal with such things in church?

imageJesus gazes around at the crowd, His eyes sweeping over the audience as if searching out every needy soul. He speaks again the words He once read in the synagogue:

The Spirit of the LORD is upon Me,
Because He has anointed Me
To preach the Gospel to the poor;
He has sent me to heal the brokenhearted,
To proclaim liberty to the captives
And recovery of sight to the blind,
To set at liberty those who are oppressed;
To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD. ~ Luke 4:18 NKJV

Turning to those still writhing at His feet, Jesus casts out the demons simply by saying, “Come out of them.” The delivered people lie quietly in the aisles of the church. Suddenly, others begin to move forward as the sick begin coming toward Him for His touch. He lays hands on them one by one and, regardless of their malady, they are instantly healed. With leaps and shouts of joy, they begin praising God for healing them.

After a few minutes, Jesus quiets the crowd and begins to teach with authority, as sinners begin to weep under the conviction His words bring. Before a formal invitation can even begin, people are flocking to the altar, falling prostrate before Him in glorious salvation.

Word soon spreads to the children’s church that Jesus is in the building, and they leave behind their craft projects and Sunday School papers to find Him. With noisy enthusiasm, the children burst through the sanctuary doors. Embarrassed parents lunge to restrain them as the little ones scramble to where Jesus is standing, clamoring for His touch. Jesus addresses the adults in the room:

Let the little children come unto Me.

He then proceeds to touch all of them with a blessing.

Young people gather around Him next, begging to follow Him as disciples. He asks them if they are willing to take up His cross. Will they go anywhere? Are they willing do endure the hardship that being a disciple will inevitably bring?

Dozens volunteer.

While all of this transpires, an outside door creaks open as a young man, tattered, filthy, and smelling like a pigsty slips in the back – unnoticed – and slowly makes his way across and around the back of the room.

Soon, the aged saints with youth still in their hearts come, asking, “Is it true we will have a body like Yours?” He smiles at them and tells them of the glorious victory they will have over the grave. He blesses them for their faithfulness and charges them to continue their mentoring of the younger saints. They step back from His words with hope restored, feeling a new vigor to go on and serve Him as long as they live.

Then suddenly, a woman with the marks of the world on her countenance begins to weep loudly. Her face is tear-streaked with makeup that could never hide the ravages of her immorality. She falls at His feet, covering them with tears as she receives His pardon.

On the other side of the building, music begins to sound, as there is a commotion in the aisle. We hear a voice cry out, “This my son was dead, and is alive again! He was lost, but now is found!” Our attention turns to a well-dressed older gentleman dancing with and hugging the tattered young man who had snuck in just moments before.

By this time, the church leaders are gathering in the back of the church… watching. One man says, “I cannot believe that our pastor brought this radical into our church.” Another replies, “We’d better get this back in hand quickly.” Another speaks, “Some of our best people have left upset today.”

So, I ask you… Does the real Jesus dare show up in our churches?

Too many churches have learned how to operate without Jesus, much like the end-time church of Laodicea. No doubt, the LORD makes this same lament over our churches today…

I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of my mouth. You say, ‘I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.’ But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked… Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.To the one who is victorious, I will give the right to sit with me on my throne, just as I was victorious and sat down with my Father on his throne. ~ Revelation 3:15-17, 20-21

imageRecently in our own church, we had a mighty outpouring of the Holy Spirit at a Wednesday evening service. When it came time for me to preach, there was no reason to… we were in the middle of experiencing the very thing I was going to speak on. It’s fine to talk about the move of God, and how He should work in our churches. However, when He shows up, we have to be willing to get out of the way, and let Him move.

Jesus’ presence should be evident today in all of our services through the ministry of the Holy Spirit. Churches will be different when He shows up in full power! Today, the church is a colony of Heaven. We are outposts of another Kingdom beyond time and space. These outposts we should be expressions of Jesus’ presence and power. The power of “the world to come” must be evident in our churches. The powers of Heaven can be ours through the down-payment of the Holy Spirit. The supernatural should be “the norm” in the life of the church.

~ adapted from Awakened By The Spirit by Ron Phillips

Categories
America Fresh Oil New Wine 2013 Living It Out In Real Time The Big Event The Life of Faith The Mysteries of God Through The Looking Glass

Where Are You Supposed To Be?

Through the Looking GlassThroughout history, success or failure is often determined by someone or something being where they are supposed to be when they are supposed to be there. From sports to warfare to our personal lives, being where you are supposed to be can make a “destiny difference”.

On June 6, 1944, the success of Operation Overlord (what we commonly refer to as D-Day) can be largely attributed to the fact that personnel and equipment were where they were supposed to be, when they were supposed to be there. Conversely, the failure of Operation Market Garden just three months later can be blamed, in large part, on the inability to get men and supplies where they needed to be in order to support troop movements and actions. Although Operation Market Garden was actually a larger operation, it failed to meet it’s objective and expedite the end World War II.

In sports, the difference between a team winning and losing a game has often come down to a player not being in his proper place when he was needed. Super Bowls have been won and lost for this very reason.

Even in the Bible, a seemingly insignificant decision made a difference we can follow across generations.

Look at King David.

2 Samuel 11:1 says…

In the spring, at the time when kings go off to war,
David sent Joab out with the king’s men and the whole Israelite army.
They destroyed the Ammonites and besieged Rabbah.
But David remained in Jerusalem.

“At a time when kings go off to war”. This would imply that David, as king and leader of the army, should have been with his army, Instead, he decided to hang back, and relax in the confines of his palace in Jerusalem. While there was not necessarily anything inherently wrong with being where he was (in his palace), by not being in his proper place, it allowed him to fall into temptation, and subsequently sin with Bathsheba. Not being where he was supposed to be opened the door for sin, and changed the destinies of Uriah the Hittite, Bathsheba, David himself, and an entire nation.

Maybe there is nothing inherently wrong with where you are… it’s just not where you are supposed to be. For me, as a burned-out Southern Baptist preacher in 1989, a perfectly acceptable place for me to be would have been at home with my family. However, where I was supposed to be was in Glorietta, New Mexico. Being there, and my subsequent encounter with the Holy Spirit as a result, changed my future, my ministry, and my life.

So where are you supposed to be? Get to that place of destiny, and the future God has in store for you could be something more amazing than you could have ever imagined.

This week…

Our annual conference, The Big Event, begins this week. We have an amazing lineup of speakers, and it could be that the place you are supposed to be is with us at Abba’s House. This could be the kairos moment you have been waiting for, but you won’t know if you are not there. If you would like more information, or to register for this free event, click here. I hope to see you there.

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