Pastor David's BLOG: Where the Supernatural Power of God is Lifted Up

Prophetic Leadership

Prophetic Leadership
(Thoughts taken from the book: PERMISSION IS GRANTED TO DO CHURCH DIFFERENTLY IN THE 21ST CENTURY)

Prophetic leadership involves vision and anticipating the future. Without vision we will not advance into the future. But without a feel for the future, anticipating what our future will be, we can develop exaggerated visions that are not birthed from the heart of God.

The tragedy of many present-day church strategies is that they are based on a natural form of logic by leaders who have no prophetic insight. We have too long looked to models of other churches and not to the Head of the Church, Jesus Christ, for our vision of the future. What works in one place works in one place! If the church in Sardis likes what the church in Philadelphia is doing and creates that model, it is no longer the church in Sardis. It is the church of Philadelphia in Sardis. Each church is located in a specific place and must evolve a company of people to meet the needs of that particular community.

Some people are very creative and others very organizational. Some are initiators, other enablers. Some are pioneers, other settlers. Some are about creators and others are refiners. Some are introverts and others are extroverts. What makes these differences combine together and work effectively is relationship, values, and the fruit of the Spirit. It means that we create life examples in people, not models of church life. Models are not transferable; while values and principles are international, cross-cultural, interracial, and eternal.

Not everyone will have prophetic dreams about our future, but everyone can embrace our future and the vision that Jesus Christ is giving us through dreams and visions and prophetic guidance that comes from the Father through trusted leadership.

PEACE

Accountability: The Path to True Freedom

In our society today the definition of freedom has become distorted into something that is actually robbing many, many people of true freedom. The world has confused freedom with indulgence. For the believer we must take our definition from the Word of God. Galatians 5:13-14 You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love. For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” (NIV)

As believers we need accountability; we are accountable to God and to each other. Accountability is not about controlling people but about enabling them to discover the freedom that exists in making wise choices. Accountability is about character development—learning to love the truth, learning to precede truth with grace and to follow it with mercy, love, patience, and kindness.

In our development of people, it is so vital that we disciple them properly in terms of their experience and response to the Word of God. We can read Scripture and enjoy its insights, perceptions, and principles. We also use Scripture to develop a relationship with Christ, the Living Word. Our own accountability must be clearly seen as operational and working effectively. As a rule, I will never make myself vulnerable to people of lesser character than myself. Nor am I happy to receive truth from someone when I cannot see any evidence of accountability in their own life.

Accountability is about having people face their potential, their identity, and their destiny. We must examine all the obstacles in the life of people that would prevent the Word from coming to pass. It is vital in the context of pursuing the future that we come to a place of self-government so that our power and anointing are not compromised. We need both vertical and horizontal accountability—to God and man. Accountability in its finest sense is more than submission to rules and regulations. It’s about the agreement to be righteous. As our relationship with Christ grows our desire to do what pleases Him blossoms into beautiful and loving ways to serve others.

Accountability helps people discover true freedom, the freedom that only Christ can give. Romans 10:14-15 How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? And how can anyone preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!”

PEACE

(Thoughts taken from the book: PERMISSION IS GRANTED TO DO CHURCH DIFFERENTLY IN THE 21ST CENTURY)

SIGNS AND WONDERS

I have always been intrigued by the miraculous stories in the Bible. One passage of scripture that has had my attention since I first believed is John 14:12-14 (NIV) 12 Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. 13 And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.

What an amazing promise! Jesus our Savior and Lord has promised us who believe that we would do the works He was doing; even greater things than these! There are a couple of things that are very important for us to understand:

1. Signs and wonders are God’s idea for the believer. Jesus came to accomplish a goal, to complete a work. He came to seek and save that which was lost (Luke 10:10). To accomplish His goal, He used “tools” namely signs and wonders. Now He has passed on His “tools” to His apprentices, to us who believe! He has given us the right tools (signs and wonders) for the right job (seek and save the lost). Mark 16:15-17a (NIV) 15 He said to them, "Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation. 16 Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. 17 And these signs will accompany those who believe…

2. Signs and wonders will accompany believers who go to out to do the works of Jesus. It seems that most Christians don’t live in the supernatural power that God has given us. But God is raising up believers who hunger for more of God and more of His power. While God’s presence is for us who believe His power is for this world. Mark 16:20 Then the disciples went out and preached everywhere, and the Lord worked with them and confirmed his word by the signs that accompanied it. Maybe the reason we don’t see more miracles, signs, and wonders in our churches is the sad reality that we don’t go out and preach everywhere we go. I’m longing for the day when believers go into the market place equipped with supernatural tools (miracles, signs, wonders, healing, etc.) and see souls saved. I’m longing for the day that our young people go into their schools with God’s anointing overflowing their spirits to see young people transformed. I’m longing for the day that God’s presence is so evident in our lives that our neighbors come to our homes on a regular basis for prayer, healing and salvation.

3. Signs and wonders will change the way believers see life. The first time I began to experience signs and wonders it shook me up. Was God really using me to pray for people and they actually got healed? The way it all began for me was through the spiritual gift of Words of Knowledge listed in 1 Corinthians 12. I was attending a men’s retreat back in the early 80’s. During a prayer meeting I sat down and placed my hands on my knees (I don’t usually sit with my hands on my knees). I felt the left knee was very cold and right knee was very hot. Through some training I receive from my friend, Dan Buus, I knew what this was. So I stood up and explained what had just happened and asked if anyone needed a healing in their right knee. I man that I had never met came down and told us that he had suffered with pain in his right knee for years! That day changed so much for me as a believer in miracles. The Gospel of Mark lists some serious signs that follow those who believe; demons driven out, people speaking in tongues (the outpouring of the Spirit) becomes a regular occurrence, evil influences picked up and thrown out, we have divine protection from harm, and people we lay hands on will get healed!!! (Mark 16:17-18) When we GO God works with us and will confirm His Word by signs, wonders, and miracles. ARE YOU READY TO GO?

PEACE


SIGNS

A priest and a pastor were fishing on the side of the road. They thoughtfully made a sign that read, “THE END IS NEAR, TURN YOURSELF AROUND BEFORE ITS TOO LATE!” One driver didn’t like the sign and shouted at them, “Leave us alone you religious nuts!” All of a sudden they heard a big splash. They looked at each other and the priest said, “Maybe we should have put up a sign that said, BRIDGE OUT, instead.”

Everywhere we go we are bombarded with signs; speed signs, direction signs, warnings signs, safety signs, advertising signs, etc. Signs are very important in our society, they help keep us safe and help keep us going where we need to go. But one area where signs are extremely important but often neglected is in the Church. Jesus said in the Gospel of Mark 16:17 And these signs will accompany those who believe… Jesus has a purpose for signs, wonders, and miracles. It is our privilege to live our lives in the realm of the supernatural. This happens as we connect to the purposes God has for us. Here is a list of signs to help us move into the supernatural lifestyle:

1. GO: Jesus told His followers to go into all the world and preach the good news to everyone (Mark 16:15). When I’m on the road and that light turns green I GO! If I don’t go the guy behind me has a way of reminding me that its time to go. IT’S TIME TO GO! Now is the time to go and share the Good News. Some of you have asked, “Where do I go?” Simply go into your part of this world. Go to your family and friends. Go to your workplace or your school. Go to your neighborhood where you live and the community where your Church is located. Go where you have influence. We have a wonderful opportunity to go and help someone find hope and healing through Jesus.

2. ASK: When Jesus was leaving Jericho with His disciples, a large crowd followed Him. When a blind man sitting by the road heard that Jesus was passing by he began shouting. Jesus stopped everything to see what he wanted. The blind man asked for a healing and Jesus replied, "Go your faith has healed you." Immediately he received his sight and started following Jesus (Mark 10:52)! Jesus still heals today, let’s help people ask Jesus for their miracle. Remember there is no greater miracle than our salvation, the forgiveness of our sins.

3. SHARE: Let’s share the Good News; how we came to know Jesus as our Lord and Savior. Someone shared his story with me about giving his life to Jesus. It had such an impact on my life that I gave my life to Jesus and became Born-Again! Now I have the wonderful opportunity to teach others about Jesus through His amazing Word, The Bible. I want to share Jesus and His power to save, heal, and restore broken lives. But much more importantly are the lives that have been saved because we as a Church GO, ASK, and SHARE. Mark 16:16 Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.

I want you to seriously think about the people that are going to heaven today because YOU were a SIGN to them of God’s amazing grace! There is still plenty of room in heaven and plenty of people that need to be saved from hell. Let’s be SIGNS that show them the way.

PEACE

Reflections on the Resurrection

When I was a young boy my brother and I played in the Fresno City junior golf tournament which was held during Easter vacation (our spring break was called Easter vacation back in the day). The four-day event began on Tuesday and concluded on Friday, GOOD FRIDAY. While I was on the golf course during Good Friday my mind would wander away from what I was doing, trying to play competitive golf, to that eventful day when Jesus was crucified. I didn't know much about the Bible but I knew that Good Friday was the day Jesus died.

Over the years Good Friday seemed to loose its importance to me. Raising two wonderful girls with Michelle and preparing for our Easter celebrations, with all the pretty dresses, Easter baskets, and delicious meals after church had taken away the passion I had for Good Friday.

But without Good Friday we would have no Easter. Without the crucifixion we would have no resurrection. Without Christ’s death we would have no everlasting life. When I was on the golf course 12pm always got my attention. I would look up into the sky and my heart would be saddened by the reality that the Son of God was about to die. Matthew 27:45-46 From noon until three in the afternoon darkness came over all the land. About three in the afternoon Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” which means “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”… Matthew 27:50 And when Jesus had cried out again in a loud voice, he gave up his spirit.

The death and resurrection of Jesus of Jesus Christ is the single most important event in human history. As a believer in the resurrection I want to keep my heart focused on that miraculous expression of God’s love. Most people know John 3:16 for God so loved the world… But few seem to know the purpose of John 3:16. It is found in John 3:17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. My heart's desire is to be someone that sees John 3:17 come alive in me and my church.

PEACE

Spiritual Reality Check

I’ve been having some reality checks come into my life lately. You know, the kind that expose a fault or weakness that you have that you don’t want anybody else knows about. Shocking isn’t it? David has faults! Pastor D has weaknesses and dare I admit, even sins? Don’t you judge me!(Romans 3:23-24)

How about you, having any reality checks lately?

In my morning time of reading the Bible I came across an interesting story about King Solomon’s son, Rehoboam, after he became king. With all the wisdom Solomon had it seems his boy didn’t have a clue. When the young man finally got his act together and became strong he, and all Israel with him, abandoned the law of the Lord. Not a smart move! The prophet of God came to him with a reality check,“This is what the LORD says, ‘You have abandoned me; therefore, I now abandon you…'” (2 Chronicles 12:5b)

OUCH! That’s gotta hurt! But these guys did something that most people today very seldom do… They admitted they messed up.Rehoboam and the leaders were sorry for what they had done and admitted, “The LORD is right. We have deserted him.” 2 Chronicles 12:6 (CEV)

I feel that most people today are more interested in finding fault and blame than admitting our struggles. I know one thing; it sure seems easier to find fault in others than to see faults in ourselves (maybe its that log in my eye that’s blocking my vision). Okay, back to the Bible story…

When the Lord saw that they humbled themselves and admitted their sin God gave them grace. But He also taught them a valuable lesson we all need to learn,2 Chronicles 12:7-8 (TEV) …”Because they admit their sin, I will not destroy them. But when Shishak attacks, they will barely survive. Jerusalem will not feel the full force of my anger, but Shishak will conquer them, and they will learn the difference between serving me and serving earthly rulers.”

Have you ever thought that serving God was too hard? I’ve seen too much in my 30+ years of ministry to ever think that. Not serving God and serving the world is much harder. Me and “PAIN” don’t get along, but me and “GRACE” are tight! Serving God at first may seem difficult while doing your own thing will start out easy, the end result is where you see the difference. Let me paraphrase the Apostle Paul, if you keep doing what you want apart from God it will kill you. But if you let the Spirit of God lead your life you get blessings and glory. That’s why I welcome the spiritual realty checks in my life because the end result will be life to the fullest!

PEACE

WORDS...

WORDS… Words can give hope, words can destroy. Words can bring encouragement; words can bring harm. The Good News Translation puts it this way; Proverbs 18:21 What you say can preserve life or destroy it; so you must accept the consequences of your words. (GNT)

Hmm… Do we really accept the consequences of our words? Don’t stop reading because here comes the answer—Jesus Christ is our source for words of wisdom AND LIFE. Luke 21:15 (NIV) For I will give you words and wisdom that none of your adversaries will be able to resist or contradict.

Let’s be honest, most of us don’t go to Jesus FIRST for words of wisdom. Words of wisdom are a promise and a gift! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve gotten the words to say for a particular circumstance and the wisdom how to apply them. (I admit it; I’m not that smart, But Jesus is!) Living this life is hard, but receiving words and wisdom gives us victory in every situation. THAT’S COOL! Look at the result of words and wisdom from Jesus--none of your adversaries will be able to resist or contradict. This is not about winning arguments this is about giving people God’s Word and God’s wisdom for life. God gives me wisdom for free and its my life’s goal is to pass on that which God has given me.

PEACE


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