May 2015

25 May Avoiding a MAJOR Mistake!

A couple of weeks ago, I was watching a Kenneth E Hagin teaching on YouTube and took special note about his traveling days as an evangelist after leaving his last pastorate in 1949. In the video, Brother Hagin stated that after becoming established as an evangelist and having traveled a couple of years, he never accepted an invitation to minister in a church unless he was assured that the meeting would last at least three weeks. Was Brother Hagin looking for prolonged meetings just to fill up his traveling calendar? No. He stated that it often two weeks to build the people's faith in order for the supernatural to manifest. It was in the third week that the physical healings would begin to happen. The protracted time was essential to laying the foundation to initiate God's plan. In our travels, I'm sensing the same situation. While I am thrilled at what God does when I minister on the infilling of the Holy Spirit in Sunday morning services, I sense a great need to go further and help establish the believers in their newfound walk in the Spirit. I am keenly aware that after I leave town, the pastor will continue his/her series on any number of subjects and fail to take the opportunity to establish the newly Spirit-baptized believers in this exciting, powerful walk. Without this additional foundational teaching, my one-time Sunday morning ministry can and often does just become an event rather than the launching pad to equip the saints for a greater work of the ministry. Sadly, I can say that what happened at the Sunday morning altar will stay at the altar and the believer will continue on with life as they did before I came to the church. The same can be said of those in our children's and student ministries. Often, our children and youth are baptized in the Holy Spirit at retreats or camps and then their experience goes untouched until the next retreat or camp. The leaders with great pride quote numbers of people baptized in the Holy Spirit but fail to acknowledge that what happened at the event stayed at the event. Thank God for the opportunity to share about the Helper. I love, love, love providing an opportunity for believers to be baptized in God's precious Holy Spirit. But, we must constantly remind ourselves that the infilling of the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in other tongues isn't a one-time, one-service event. I love what Howard Carter wrote: "We must not forget that the speaking with other tongues is not only an initial evidence of the Holy Spirit's indwelling, it is a continual experience for the rest of his life to assist in the worship of God. It is a flowing stream that should never dry up, and that will enrich the life spiritually." Howard Carter ~ Questions and Answers on Spiritual Gifts The reason for this week's blog is to encourage you as the leader or teacher to provide for those entrusted to your ministry the opportunity to receive the promise of the Father. Preach and provide the opportunity. Invite guest ministers to teach/preach and then give the altar call. But, please don't stop there. Please don't have a powerful, life-changing altar call and have many believers (adults and/or children) baptized in the Holy Spirit and then move the next service to something totally unrelated. Build. Enlarge. Enlighten. Fortify. The very next ministry opportunity and the subsequent weeks, teach about the who's, what's, where's, and why's. Teach about who should be daily praying in the Spirit. Explain what are the benefits of daily praying in the Spirit. Share about where they can daily pray in the Spirit. Emphasize why praying daily in the Spirit isn't an option, it is a command. Oh, and if you didn't get it, the word "daily" is an important word. Leaders, let's make EVERY day a DAY of the Holy Ghost for those in our ministry. Be filled and continue to be filled ...

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18 May Make Your Kid’s Bible Come ALIVE!

Here's a simple and yet important suggestion to use in your ministry. In an age where many in our churches are Bible illiterate, why don't we use our ministry to change this trend. When we teach a Bible verse or tell of an event in the Bible, why don't we actually have an open Bible in our hands, and if time allows, encourage and help if necessary those in our ministry to locate your reference so that they can read along with you. To take this one bit further, let's use this opportunity to emphasize the significance and power of the Word of God by doing the following. Before the Bible is opened, tell those in your ministry that in just a matter of one minute when we open our Bibles, this is going to happen ...

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11 May Did You Get Your T-shirt?

Over the years, I've been privileged to travel and see some of the wonders and sites of the world. Among the many places that my family visited when I was a child, I remember the beauty of the Grand Canyon, the uniqueness of the Petrified Forest, the majesty of the Redwood Forest, and the power displayed at Hoover Dam. During our almost 36 years of ministry, Vickie and I have been able to visit and experience the beauty of Austria, England, Scotland, Wales, the Netherlands, France, Italy, Romania, Israel, Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, Jamaica, Trinidad, Guyana, Colombia, Mexico, Belize, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kenya, Burundi, and Mali. Because of this blog's international readership, I'm wise enough to not list a few examples of places that stand out in my memory. I know that I'd probably offend people from other countries where for space reasons I didn't mention an example from their country. Here is one thing that I can say without fear of repercussion, I do have wonderful experiences and stories to tell about each and every one of these nations. But, without having first visited a country and personally experiencing its sites and wonders, I could never tell stories and share details about the beauty of a city or the grandeur of a cathedral or the marvel of a castle or the incredible sweetness of the people or the tickling of my taste buds as I tried a food unique to that country. To this day, my eyes light up and a passion fills my voice as I tell story after story about places that we've visited and the people who endeared themselves to us. These stories would easily cause the listener to want to pull out their passport and join us on a trip to that city and country. Why? Because I'm not telling a hearsay story. It's not something that I've read about or seen on a National Geographic television program. I know that I know what I'm talking about because I've been there, done that, and bought the t-shirt! This morning, I sensed the Holy Spirit speaking to me personally reminding me that there are places in the heavenlies that I have yet to visit, experiences I have yet to enjoy, and stories that have yet to be created. There are places in worship that have yet to be explored, secret places in prayer that are waiting for my visitation, and a freedom brought about by losing myself in the Spirit that is beckoning my presence. God isn't withholding these sites and experiences from me. It's just a matter of me pulling out my spiritual passport and allowing the Holy Spirit to take me on these adventures. The Holy Spirit also reminded me that people are waiting on me to experience these heavenly places so that I can accurately tell the stories and cause them to want to make the journey with me. What I sensed the Holy Spirit telling me could also be said to you. He has places in the heavenlies that are waiting for you. The Holy Spirit has your "been there, done that, come and go with me" t-shirt waiting on your entrance to these heavenly wonders. After your journey, your stories (testimonies) will have those entrusted to your ministry lined up and ready to join you on a return visit. Come on tour guide, lose yourself in His presence. Explore the heavenlies. Experience the wonders. Go where few have gone before and bring back the reports. A generation of children and youth are counting on you. Go make it happen....

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04 May Want Greater Manifestations of the Holy Spirit?

I'm thrilled by the number of people reading this blog and attending our Ignite the Supernatural Conferences. At last count, there have been individuals from 69 nations that have read at least one of the blog postings in the last 30 days. That is absolutely incredible. This information is a reminder of the fact that people all over the world are hungry and looking for a way to usher in God's presence. While I'm thrilled at the number of people reading, I recognize that those reading what I write and then taking the next step to actually do what I write is possibly a small percentage. I am aware that people are busy. Their "get-around-to-it" list is full and possibly overflowing. To use King James language, "the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak". And, sadly, this busyness can thwart the Holy Spirit's effort to change you and your ministry. Let me ask a favor of you. If you never ever do anything else that I suggest, at least do the following. Write down this sentence and then post it around your home and workplace. My revelation of the Spirit is proportional to my relationship with the Spirit. Can you see the significance of this sentence? Your private, one-on-one time with the Holy Spirit will bring a new fresh revelation of the person and work of the Holy Spirit. It's this revelation which will open the door for working together with Him in the public. I'll even make it simpler. Little time with Him in private, little demonstration of Him in public. Consistent time with Him in private, powerful, greater demonstration of Him in public. The secret communion and fellowship of the Spirit is the key to His visible manifestation in public. Post the "My revelation ...

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