March 2010

29 Mar Let’s Get Radical!

Isn't it a twisted mindset to expect to produce radical, sold-out children in our ministries when all they see is mealy-mouthed, namby-pamby, lackadaisical attitudes in our services? You know that I am telling the truth. Our kids are direct products of what they see and experience. Radical, Holy Ghost-filled, uncompromising kids come from boys and girls observing and participating in radical, Holy Ghost-filled, uncompromising children's ministry services. Perhaps one of the greatest things that you and I can do today is to go through and assess and analyze our services. Are our boys and girls seeing intense, passionate prayer or are they witnessing check-it-off-the-list, I've-got-it-done prayer? Are we allowing the children to witness and participate in radical, passionate worship from our entire children's ministry team or are they possibly seeing perhaps the person on the platform half-heartedly singing while the rest of the team is busy looking at the lesson or getting their props together or standing in the back of the room visiting? What about your personal ministry time? Can the children see your faith and confidence as you pray for their personal needs? Or are they watching some exercise in religiosity? Would you even want to think about the platform ministry? Are the children seeing someone who is filled to overflowing with the message and is passionately communicating the gospel or are they seeing individuals who skimmed the lesson just before the service?If we are going to impact this generation, there must be a change in our mindset and our way of ministry. Let's get radical. Let's become passionate. Let's make our love for Jesus and our desire to powerful demonstrate His presence in our lives and ministry so enormously large and visible that the size of your auditorium or classroom can't contain it all and it will have to spill out and overflow outside of the room ...

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15 Mar Here’s What I See …

While sitting at our Ignite the Supernatural Conference booth a couple of weeks ago in St. Louis, a children's pastor asked me about what I can see happening in children's ministries across our nation. I replied by saying that I can see a major shift coming. Things are happening below the surface that will affect what we will eventually see in our services.I keep coming back to the comments that I posted on the 9/28/09 blog entry "There's a Whole Lot of Shaking Going On" and the 10/26/09 blog entry "Holy Ghost Seismologists". There is a definite, defined work of the Holy Spirit that it happening "under the radar" of most in leadership positions in our ministries. This unseen to the natural eye move and shift is about to have a profound affect upon our business as usual mentality.To illustrate what I see, allow me to use the story that blanketed our headlines for several days, the devastating earthquake in Chile which took place on February 27th. Last month's earthquake did more than kill hundreds and devastate a large swath of Chile. It also hurtled the entire city of Concepcion 10 feet to the west, according researchers at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. Santiago, the nation's capital, was found to have moved 11 inches to the west-southwest. Using precise GPS measurements taken before and after the magnitude-8.8 earthquake, associate researchers Benjamin Brooks and James Foster discovered the dramatic shift.Because of fellow Holy Spirit Seismologists, people who passionately long for a move of God's Spirit in our children and children's ministries, the Holy Spirit is working below the surface, preparing for dramatic shift that will cause monumental movement. I see this move causing entire churches to be moved and shifted, elementary and middle schools across our nation dramatically moved by this work of the Holy Spirit causing revival to break out, the spiritual GPS coordinates of entire cities moved from its present position as the Holy Spirit shakes the very foundation of people groups across that area.Holy Spirit Seismologists, let's continue to look into the realm of the unseen. Let's prepare ourselves by aligning ourselves to the Spirit's movements. While the movements in your service right now might seem to be almost insignificantly minute, it is through these weekly moves and realignments that is setting the stage for the dramatic, property moving, GPS documented event that will bring to the surface what we have been witnessing below the surface.Get ready, get ready, get ready. I see a whole lot of shaking is about to be going on in your ministry!...

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08 Mar Watch Your Shadow!

The other day, I was speaking to the pastor on our church staff who conducts the majority of the funerals for our church. I jokingly told him that I don't officiate too many funerals because the funeral homes have forbidden me to get anywhere near a casket. I continued by telling him that due to the supernatural power on the inside of me the funeral directors are fearful that the church lighting might cause my shadow to fall upon the deceased laying in the casket and cause the deceased to spring back to life. While I was only joking with my friend, the Holy Spirit later reminded me of the conversation and challenged me in an area of my personal life and ministry. Doesn't Acts 5 tell of people waiting alongside of the street just for Peter's shadow to fall upon them? Were they waiting there to see what Peter was wearing or was it because they knew that what was in Peter could cause them to be healed? They weren't there to hear Peter preach or teach. They weren't there for Peter to lay his hands upon them. They were waiting for his shadow! Here is what the Holy Spirit told me. You and I can be so filled-to-overflowing with God's Spirit that our bodies can't contain all of His presence. So, what happens with this overflow? I call it the "ooze" and "splash" factor.  We see with Peter, this overflow was too much for Peter's body to hold and so it splashed out and brought healing to all who connected with his shadow. Thank God for the lesson preparation that you and I do each week. Thank God for the extra preparation to make the lesson leap off of the page and become a rhema, God-breathed word. But, there is another factor that we might be overlooking. Add in the "ooze" and "splash" factor from the filled-to-overflowing teacher (that's you) and the boys and girls will be touched by the Holy Spirit by just walking into our rooms and being in our presence! Remember, don't neglect the teaching preparation. Continue to find all of the tools and props that will captivate the listener's attention. Constantly feast upon the meat of God's Word so that we can serve our children a solid, balanced spiritual meal. But, now with this new "ooze" knowledge, let's be filled-to-overflowing with His presence. I guarantee that adding the "ooze" and "splash" factor will cause your ministry to never ever be the same again....

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01 Mar Let Me Introduce You to the Holy Spirit

I am convinced that the reason that many children's ministry leaders and workers fail to flow with the Holy Spirit is due to the fact that they don't truly know Him. They have heard about Him, perhaps read about Him, mentioned His name in the Apostles' Creed, and even taught about Him. But, few really, really, really know Him.How can this be? I believe that this lack of relationship is a result of the Holy Spirit being identified knowingly or unknowingly as a mystical, indescribable mass or force. Our children's ministry leaders are suffering from a horrible case of the "It Syndrome". Knowing that we can't identify with an "it", Jesus sought to destroy this mentality as He informed His disciples in John 14 - 16 that this invisible part of the Godhead is so desirous of being in a relationship with us that He has taken upon Himself the attributes of human personality. Jesus made it possible for us to understand this in the fact that He refers to the Holy Spirit with the pronouns "He", "Him", and "Himself" nineteen times in these chapters.The Holy Spirit wants to be KNOWable (while "knowable" isn't a word, it is the ONLY word that is applicable). We see that the Holy Spirit wants to be PERSONALable. HE (a Person) wants to know us and for us to know Him. Now, we can walk with Him, talk with Him, listen to His voice, sense His joys and frustrations, etc. This KNOWable Holy Spirit is able and willing to become CONNECTable to us each and every day!Are you infected with the "It Syndrome"? If so, allow me to introduce you to my friend, the Holy Spirit. Take a second and be courteous. Introduce yourself and then apologize for having not known Him as you should up to this point. Begin to include Him (the Person) in your daily walk. Talk to Him throughout your day. Make appointments in your schedule to allow quiet, intimate times for the two of you to dialogue. You'll be glad that you did!!!...

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