Archive for November, 2007

Recently I came to the realization that I cannot simply ask God to do everything for me while I sit back and do nothing. While you might think that is a bit extreme to ask God to do something while we do nothing, it actually isn’t that far from the truth. Before I moved to Redding I was under the false assumption that I could not hear from God. There were many times when I asked God whether or not I should do something and I would never hear Him speak to me. What I didn’t know at the time was that God can speak through other things than just an audible voice. Since I never heard His audible voice I thought that he never answered my prayers.

In the past several months I have been almost overwhelmed by God’s love in how often He speaks to me. No, I don’t hear His audible voice as though I am talking to my friends, but I have heard Him tell me hundreds of times that He is wanting to heal people and then as a result people have been healed. Hundreds of times God has given me prophetic words for other people that encouraged them with the things that God has been showing them. Hundreds of times God has given me dreams that confirm things or speak prophetically to me just as Joseph or Daniel in the Bible.

While praying for a friend recently I felt that God was wanting me to pray for them as though I had never prayed for them before. Dozens of times I have prayed for this friend without them being healed. There have been breakthroughs and answered prayers that I am very thankful for, but I felt as though I had gotten to the place of praying for them as a way of sympathizing instead of praying for them to be healed. So I repented to them and began to pray like I meant it. When nothing happened the first time I prayed again. I kept praying until we saw some breakthrough rather than stopping and just asking God to bless them.

Then, a few days later I was praying for another friend who I have also prayed for many times. I invited Holy Spirit to come more, as He was already there. Then it hit me. God was there. Every time I have prayed for this person He has been there. Sometimes His presence has been very thick and yet the person is still not healed. I was asking God to heal the person Himself. However, I realized that I have done that before and that God listens to me. I remembered that it is impossible for nothing to happen when I pray. Then it hit me; God wants me to do something about it!

Mark 4:38-40 says:

Jesus Himself was in the stern, asleep on the cushion; and they woke Him and said to Him, “Teacher, do You not care that we are perishing?”

 And He got up and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, “Hush, be still.” And the wind died down and it became perfectly calm.

 And He said to them, “Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith?”

The disciples asked the savior of the world, “do you not care that we are perishing?” however we often ask the Healer, “aren’t you going to heal this person?” Jesus then essentially told them, “you wouldn’t be scared if you had any faith.” I think that God is now saying, “you would heal this person if you had faith.”

Well hasn’t God been healing people when we ask Him to come? Yes. Jesus didn’t start His ministry by telling the disciples that they had no faith. He performed miracles. He taught by parables to the crowd and then explained them to the disciples. However Jesus knew that the disciples must be trained to partner with Heaven so that God’s will would be done wherever they went. It is the difference between going to get food yourself and asking someone else to do it for you.

When children learn responsibility their parents can trust them with much greater things. However the child who always asks for help and never does anything themselves will never be given responsibility. I am not saying that we are the ones who heal people, but I remind you that Jesus did tell His disciples to heal the sick, raise the dead, cast out demons, and cleanse lepers. He is preparing us for promotion just as He prepared His disciples before Pentecost. To walk in a higher level of authority we must be willing to take steps of faith beyond what we currently know. God is doing something, it just might not be what we think.

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God Magnet

Posted: November 17, 2007 in Uncategorized

About seven or eight years ago I remember one of my high school classmates singing a song by one of his favorite bands, MxPx. The song was called “Chick Magnet” and the line he always sang was, “Well he’s a chick magnet, if ya know what I mean. The way the girlies just go to him, well ya should’ve seen.”

People often ask me how I get words of knowledge. Do I go around and constantly ask God to show me things? That’s a good idea, but I have only done that a few times. Do I seek the Lord for a few hours every morning to get a list of things to look for? Nope, but that isn’t a bad idea either. Most of the time I just feel something in my body that isn’t what my body would normally do. Then I ask people who around me if they have a problem with that part of their body. I really can’t take credit for getting the words of knowledge because frankly I didn’t do anything to get them. Well, maybe I did actually do something to get them.

This morning I spent a few minutes reflecting on the goodness of God. I remembered the day almost a year ago when God gave me a huge download of things He wanted to heal and I saw each one of them healed. I remember being at work and getting words of knowledge for my co-workers who weren’t Christians. Since I knew that it was God speaking to me, I was only slightly hesitant to ask them if they had that problem. For what seemed like weeks I was getting dozens of words for people every day. Actually it was only three or four days, but I could literally be writing an email and would get words of knowledge for the person. However, I then began to become afraid to give the words because of how people were reacting. Whereas I had been very accurate at first, I started to be much less accurate. Before I knew it, I wasn’t getting words of knowledge any more.

Now fast forward to June of this year. I was going on some ministry trips and was stepping out with what God was showing me. Then I went on more trips in July and even if I wasn’t sure about whether it was God or not, I would try it out. By the time August rolled around, it felt as though I had antennas sticking out from my body in every direction. I would pick up words of knowledge for people about problems they had forgotten they had because they had become accustomed to them. I started to realize what was happening just before going on a trip to Petoskey, Michigan at the beginning of September. I was no longer afraid of whether I was wrong or not; I was just going to give the word of knowledge regardless.

There are things that we can do to attract God. Some are obvious while others are less obvious. Some of those obvious things are reading our bibles, praying, spending time in worship and things like that. The things that are less obvious have to do with God’s character. God is good, so if we aren’t ready to obey what He is going to tell us, He isn’t going to tell us. In His goodness, He spares us the heartache of repeated failures that come simply because we aren’t ready for the responsibility that He gave us. No guy would ever be a chick magnet if he never talked to girls. In the same way, no person is going to be a God magnet if they never talk to God. Ask God questions, and make sure to answer the phone when He calls. He looks at our faithfulness and will give you the responsibility when He sees you are ready to handle it.

There is one more great way to become a God Magnet. How do you respond to a friend who asks, “Can you to do me a favor?” Do you immediately say yes or do you hesitantly say maybe? I had someone ask me two days ago if I could do a favor for them and I told them frankly, “it depends on what it is,” because I knew that his priorities were not my priorities. When he told me what it was that he wanted me to do, I told him that I couldn’t do it because it conflicted with a higher priority. We have to know what our priorities are, and if you want to be a God Magnet, then God must be number one on your priority list. Regardless of my desire to help them, if I constantly turn down people who ask me to do favors for them, it won’t be long before they stop asking me for help. They will find someone who is not only wanting to help, but is also willing to make any sacrifice necessary to help. God loves that we desire for Him to use us, but He is attracted to the people who say yes before He even asks.

Got Love?

Posted: November 11, 2007 in Uncategorized

I know I promised a blog on what has happened over the past few days, but the reality is that I can’t put it to words. I tried, but I can’t do it. Three hours of writing and I feel like I would need to write a book in order to finish it. My thoughts are too jumbled right now to put something together that would be comprehensible. So here is a quick thought on love: 

“And now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love.”  

So there you have it. Love is the greatest. Until we encounter the love of God we won’t be able to share it with others because you can only give what you have. Got love?

Wow, so much has happened since I last wrote. Within 48 hours I witnessed God open over a dozen people’s ears, increase the vision of a person who is almost completely blind, dissolve three tumors near a woman’s collarbone, heal a man’s leg that had kept him from being able to work, and other miracles of healing. Aside from being amazed by God’s love in healing all of these people, not to mention the hundreds of others that I didn’t personally witness, is that most of the healings took place not when someone approached me for prayer, but rather when God spoke to me about what He was doing.

The invitation is there. God is calling the plays out methodically just hoping that someone is listening to what He is saying. God is looking for people who are leaning into Him to hear what He is saying and act upon it. I used to tell people that God never speaks to me. However, what I didn’t realize is that if I had been really hungry to hear God, I should have waited on Him until I heard Him speak. Two and a half years ago I went on a my first mission trip to South Africa. I went into the trip praying that I would see miracles while I was there. However, I was dissappointed to return home without seeing anyone healed. Unfortunately I didn’t realize for over a year that I didn’t pray for anyone to be healed while I was there.

Now I understand what God is doing and what He saying at least some of the time. I have asked God to show me what He is doing so that I would only do what I see Him doing. Jesus only did what He saw the Father doing. That is what words of knowledge are. Similarly, by leaning into God we can often get a grasp for what He is doing in this current season. For us in Redding, He is giving us authority over deafness. It is amazing. I had never seen anyone healed of deafness eight months ago, and nobody healed of it in the U.S. until July, but since then I have seen over 50 people have their hearing restored. Around 40 of those have been just in the past two months. Those aren’t people that were in the same room as me, those are people that I have prayed for personally. The Kingdom of Heaven is here!

I feel like God is taking us on a bullet train. Right now it is leaving the station and is picking up speed, however, it is still there and if people will drop their luggage and run after it, they will make it on the train. This train is rapid acceleration. God is going to take us to our next destination so much more quickly than we reason is possible. However, this is what happens when the Kingdom is upon you. God is calling us to draw near to Him so that He can reveal His secrets to us. We don’t hear because we don’t listen. We don’t see miracles because we don’t pray.

The Kingdom of Heaven is now. God is pouring out His Spirit on all flesh, at least on those who want it. However, in order to want something you must know that it is available. My personal conviction in this season is to drop everything and run after God. That doesn’t mean that I don’t go to work or do my homework for school. I even got my oil changed in my car about two weeks ago. However, it does mean that I am looking closely at the activities I engage in to determine how committed I am to them. The Kingdom is here and it is accelerating at a rapid pace, I don’t want to miss it because I am holding onto nonessential things.