Unity or Remnant?

“Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.” Ephesians 5:21 (NIV)

God’s word is so clear that He desires and blesses unity (Psalm 133 and John 17). But unity isn’t just bringing people together. Unity isn’t based on the lowest common denominator. Godly unity involves submission, oneness and obedience to Christ. And the fact is, God always starts with a remnant. As much as I would love to have every pastor and every church involved in our praying for revival, in our nights of glory, in any and every APN activity, I would rather have those who really want it, and will chase after it at all cost. And praise God, we do have a handful of churches in our city that literally come together in such submission, oneness and obedience to Christ. They are hungry for the Holy Spirit and for revival in our city. The reality is, God always starts with a remnant!

Pray for your pastor to desire to extend God’s kingdom rather than building their own. Pray that every lie they have believed or fear that has hindered them to be broken off of them. Pray that he would be willing to humble himself, submit to other pastors and prophetic/apostolic leaders, and seek oneness in and obedience to Christ. Pray that your church would desire to be a part of the remnant and join what God is already doing in our city. Pray that the Holy Spirit would truly be welcome in your church, and that every hindrance of His moving among you would be removed. Pray that God would pour out revival, awakening in our city and transform every fiber of it to be a shining light on the hill!

Other sheep!

“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep.” John 10:11 (ESV)

Jesus is known as the Good Shepherd who knows and cares for His sheep! He even told His disciples that He had sheep from other folds that would ultimately be joined as one flock (John 10:16)! Join me in praying that these sheep would come into His fold!

Sleeping sheep – These are the folks in churches where the word is not preached and the leadership is compromised. They are not hearing the truth, nor are they eating meat, and as such are weak and have fallen asleep. Pray for those sheep in churches across our city to wake up and head toward churches that will feed them life-giving spiritual meals.

Wandering sheep (aka prodigals) – These are those know the truth but have wandered from it. They may have grown up in the church or in Christ loving homes but have been lured away by the world or by the lies propagated to them in the education system. The word is in them, and is just waiting to be activated as the Holy Spirit breathes on the seeds hidden in their hearts. Pray for those you know who are wandering in darkness, away from Jesus.

Lost sheep – These are the people who don’t know Christ yet. Those who are not yet sheep! Many of these have heard about Jesus but up to this point have rejected Him. Though many have never heard the Gospel in a way they can understand, or the veil is keeping them blinded (2 Corinthians 4:4). Pray for the veil to be removed for these sheep and that they’d come running into the light!

Wounded sheep – These are those who have been in churches with wolves or hirelings as their pastors. Sadly, many sheep have been deeply abused by church leadership. Many of these sheep have left the protection of the church and are isolated and are vulnerable. Their wounds from the church have tainted them toward Jesus! Pray that God would pour out a grace upon their wounds and that they’d have courage to trust the church again. Ask God to draw them into a healthy non-abusing church!

Deceived sheep – Though all the above sheep operate in a level of deception, these ones are currently worshiping false gods and serving in alternative religions such as Islam, Buddhism, Mormonism and even witchcraft. This veil will be removed and many will come running to the fold! Jesus Himself is appearing to many of these in dreams and visions and setting them free. This freedom bringing revelation will continue, and in fact will increase! Ask God to reveal the true Jesus in our city in every context He is misrepresented. Pray for any that you know personally to come to know Jesus.

Remember who you are!

“And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.” 1 Peter 5:10 (ESV)

Recently I had a very long, intense and painful dream. It seemed to last all night. It went on and on and on. It was very personal as I was rejected and betrayed by loved ones, abandoned and isolated from those closest to me. I was stabbed in the back and left alone in a foreign country with no identification, no money and no weapon. Two strongmen harassed me as I wearily passed by them. But finally (and believe me this was after a long painful journey) I remembered who I was and what I could do. In my dreams I often can fly and I flew up the coast out of the foreign country!

Early that morning, as I sat with the Lord I knew I did not represent myself, though because it was me, I felt all the pain! He quickly spoke to me saying REMEMBER! And then unpacked four specific things to remember in this hour…

Remember who I am

I am a blood bought child of God, I am Jesus’ bride, I am a king and priest, I am a co-heir with Christ, I am an ambassador of the kingdom of heaven, I am dearly loved, I am called, I am chosen. I am an overcomer! I am not abandoned, or rejected or an orphan. I am adopted into the family of God!

Remember whose I am

I belong to God! Jesus Christ is my Lord and Savior. This life I now live is completely yielded to Him! I am in a covenant relationship with the LORD, the Most High God! He is mine and I am His!

Remember my authority

All authority on heaven and earth has been delegated to me through Jesus Christ! I have His authority over sickness, demons and more!

Remember what I can do

God has abundantly given me gifts, anointing, a calling, a destiny to fulfill, a purpose for being here right now! I am filled and empowered by the Holy Spirit to do even greater things. I can crush the devil and every demon underneath my feet! I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me!

I believe this has widespread application! Whether you’re a pastor, leader, parent, student, etc., this has been a very hard and painful journey, especially these past few years. But the Lord is saying to you; “Remember who you are, whose you are, what authority you have been given and what you can do!”  

Ask God to quicken in your heart who you are, whose you are, your authority and what you can do! Pray for this for your pastor and church. Ask God to remind His kids across this city, who have had a very challenging time these past years to remember! God is about to take what we’ve been through and release His promotion. Ask Him for Him to take what the enemy meant for evil and turn it into good in your life, your family’s life, your pastor, your church and the Church across Athens!

Happy New Year!

Humble yourselves before the Lord, and He will exalt you.” James 4:10 (HCSB)

We have just entered the Jewish New Year, 5783! We have 3 months and 6 days before we enter our own New Year, 2023. In a sense, we are living in the future right now! Something has already shifted. Can you feel it? This past year had a lot of shaking and exposing, yet most of what was going on was hidden. Secret indictments were distributed, but now things are about to go public. What was going on in the secret place will now be made know in very public ways.

According to Johnny Enlow, the number three in Hebrew represents “justified repayment/recompense!” This is good news for us who have been sowing good seeds. But for those who have been sowing evil, that is not such good news! In fact, right now we have a window of ten days to humble ourselves before the LORD. This window closes on October 4, which is Yom Kippur, the Jewish Day of Atonement! If you have anything hidden, please humble yourself, repent and bring it into the light. This is our opportunity to humble ourselves, or we will be humbled.

John Enlow also says that Psalm 83 corresponds to the Jewish year 5783. Take some time to meditate upon it. Here are just some of the verses…

O God, do not keep silence; do not hold Your peace or be still, O God! For behold, Your enemies make an uproar; those who hate You have raised their heads. They lay crafty plans against Your people; they consult together against Your treasured ones. They say, “Come, let us wipe them out as a nation; let the name of Israel be remembered no more!” For they conspire with one accord; against You they make a covenant…

O my God, make them like whirling dust, like chaff before the wind. As fire consumes the forest, as the flame sets the mountains ablaze, so may You pursue them with Your tempest and terrify them with Your hurricane! Fill their faces with shame, that they may seek Your name, O LORD. Let them be put to shame and dismayed forever; let them perish in disgrace, that they may know that You alone, whose name is the LORD, are the Most High over all the earth. (HCSB)

Those are some intense words! Cry out for mercy in this hour of wrath (Habakkuk 3:2). In a very practical sense, pray for those who will be impacted by hurricane Ian that is about to hit Florida. Pray for supernatural protection over God’s children as the weather pounds the earth. Pray for those in the church who have hidden things, secret sins, to humble themselves and bring them into the light while they still can. Pray that the LORD will be known as the Most High over all the earth, over all those who conspire against Him and His people. Pray that indeed, this New Year would be a time of repayment and recompense of all the enemy has stolen, killed and destroyed during this past season! Ask Him to restore all that was meant to be yours and your family’s!

Look where it’s leading!

There is a path before each person that seems right, but it ends in death.” Proverbs 14:12 (ESV)

I was sitting in a parking lot in the process of doing something illegal. When a police car drove by, a thought suddenly shot through my head. At the time I did not know it was the Holy Spirit, but I knew that if I kept going down the track that I was on I would end up in jail and/or dead! Three months later I surrendered to Jesus as my Lord and Savior! I was 19, heading for destruction, without even considering it until that moment in the parking lot. The way that seems right to me was leading to destruction! But the path that leads to life is only entered upon by a narrow gate (Matthew 7:13-14). That moment is burned into my memory as a reminder of God’s faithfulness!

Now here is the hidden part… as I wasted my life and ran away from God, my mother never stopped praying for me! I have always been wholehearted and up till that moment I had been wholeheartedly running from God in absolute rebellion! Yet, I know the Holy Spirit did not let up on me because I had a praying mom! You see, we reap what we sow (Galatians 6:7-9), and my mom sowed many MANY hours, throughout many years, praying on my behalf! I recall coming home in the middle of the night (i.e. 3am) finding my mom awake crying and praying for me. Though she definitely grew weary, as a letter she wrote me on my 18th birthday expressed, she never stopped praying!

Mothers and fathers, I beseech you, do not stop praying for your wayward children! God hears every prayer and not one goes missing. God may not answer your prayer in your timing or in the way that you expect, but I believe your prayers are vital. Jesus told His disciples to pray and not give up (Luke 18:1). May the Lord grant you endurance as you pray for your wandering children. Don’t cry out to Him in fear, but ask Him for a greater measure of faith as you pray.

Btw, I am wondering whether these prayed for prodigals are going to be some of the first fruits of the coming revival and 1 billion soul harvest! Pray it is so!!!

“Father, I ask in Jesus powerful name, for the Holy Spirit to speak into these prodigal’s minds, just as You did for me so many years ago. Thank You for faithfully answering our prayers with awesome deeds (Psalm 65:5 – NLT) and moving upon our children!”

The trap of giftedness!

But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere.” James 3:17 (NIV)

Too often we mistake anointing and giftedness with maturity. People who have talents and gifts are often given more of a voice than they should. Their anointing, as powerful as it may be, does not mean they are mature, or even have a good character. People have ministered in very public places with a high level of anointing, long after they had strolled into sin. Gifting is irrevocable (Romans 11:29), meaning they are given to us by grace and are not earned, or sustained by our efforts.

We also need to discern the difference between immaturity and rebellion. It is very common to have much zeal but lack wisdom and maturity. It is totally another thing to operate in gifting but to be in sin.

We need to be careful not to “lay hands on people” too soon. They may have the giftedness we need, but do they have the maturity required to operate in the position we need them to fulfill. Many pastors regret handing over key ministries to “gifted folks” who ultimately have “faults” that should have held them back from the place of influence they were given.

Jesus’ warning to wolves in sheep clothing was not denying what they could do, but urging us to look at the character and maturity behind the person (Matthew 7:16). We must look at the fruit in their life! Are they teachable? Are they humble? Are they willing to submit? Are they hiding anything?

Ask God to release in your church, and especially in your pastor, an increased level of discernment, to see behind the loudness of giftedness and anointing. Ask God to reveal anything in you that is hiding behind giftedness and anointing. Ask Him to give you a grace to be more teachable, more humble and more willing to submit to God’s authority!

The smorgasbord church!

“Whatever you do in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father.” Colossians 3:17 (NASB)

Buffets are not new, but they definitely fit into the consumer-focused cultural reality of our day! Before restaurant buffets became popular, ‘all-you-can-eat’ meals were called a smorgasbord. These have become the norm for cruise ships, and some restaurants now only serve buffet style! All you can eat, more choices than are necessary, new types of tasty delights, as well as the trustworthy favorites. People approach the vast array of culinary options in many different ways. Some only take what they would normally order at a restaurant. Others see it as an opportunity to taste everything so they load up their plates, later regretting having consumed too much. Others see it as an opportunity to try something new and find things they like and dislike. Some make sure they get all they can for their money!

But smorgasbords are found in other places besides just food. People shop for churches the same way they shop anything else. They look for what is best for them. They shop for the best kids’ program, the best worship, and/or the best student ministry in town. The problem is, churches are not meant to be about us, or what we want and can get out of it. We are a part of the church, and the church we go to is meant to be the place we serve, give and grow as disciples of Jesus Christ. It was never about convenience or the “best” services. It’s about being a family who worships, prays and loves together. Church services are not meant to make us comfortable and happy, but holy and filled with purpose and destiny for the Kingdom of God. The church is meant to be counter cultural, not just a clean model of the world. The church is not a place for self-help, but of self-denial. Let me just conclude that the local church should strive for excellence, but in our efforts, we are not to compromise or define ourselves by the world. We are to glorify God in all we do (Colossians 3:17)!

Ask the Lord to redefine what church is all about for you. Ask Him if you are at the right church for the right reasons. Ask Him to break off of you any and every consumer mentality that you have brought into your church choice. Ask Him to grant you the grace to become an active part in your church, not just a consuming spectator!

Now is THAT time!

“And I will place on his shoulder the key of the house of David. He shall open, and none shall shut; and he shall shut, and none shall open.” Isaiah 22:22 (ESV)

Today is September 22, 2022! It is the ninth month, representing the fullness of a pregnancy. What has been conceived and has been growing in the womb is about to be born! And 22:22 represents kingdom authority and dominion. As we step into a new season in the physical, we are also moving into a new season in the Spirit. In the natural this is harvest season. What has been growing in the hidden place is coming forth. Revelation is accelerating, as well as the fulfilling of many of these prophecies. Miracles and answered prayers are increasing, dramatically. The question is, are we ready for this new season? Have you taken the time to prepare? Has your church spent the time, money and resources to prepare for the harvest? Or are you, your church moving forward as if tomorrow was going to look like today? Are you, your church, making plans for 2023 and beyond based off the same matrix of our current moment?

Our world is about to drastically change! There is no straight path forward. There is a fork in the road right in front of us! We are either stepping into a revival that this world has never seen, that will change how we do life, OR the world is going to hell. If the globalists get their way, if you survive the culling of the billions of people they want to remove from the planet, you will be enslaved and controlled. Nevertheless, the devil is not going to get his way! It is not that time! We are in God’s time! We are in God’s harvest. And it is going to be huge! So, get ready for different. Get ready for change. Get ready for the spiritual climate to shift.

Seek the Lord regarding what you need to do to get yourself ready for harvest, for kingdom advancement, for messiness and increase of God’s tangible presence! Seek Him regarding your house being ready for harvest, and kingdom ministry. Tell Him that all that you are and have are for His glory. Surrender yourself and everything to Him now! Cry out for your church to get ready, so that they will not miss the day of visitation. What we do in this season matters, and we will be held accountable for stewarding what we have been given! Ask God to prepare the citywide church to move into greater unity and cooperation as we bring in the harvest, as we reach the lost and disciple them into leaders and disciple-makers! Btw, watch the Jewish feasts as they are quite significant this year!

For quality of life!

“Never be in a hurry about appointing a church leader. Do not share in the sins of others. Keep yourself pure.” 1 Timothy 5:22 (NLT)

The United Nations Family Planning Association (UNFPA) is a part of the United Nations that wants to depopulate the world, and provide free abortion on demand across the globe. All under the guise of “quality of life!” This organization literally has given money to churches to “buy” them! If your church has received money from UNFPA they have been compromised. And if your church is compromised, you need to run from it! Would you stay in your church if you discovered that your pastor was protecting a pedophile? Both are happening and both are bad!!!

Pray that this would be exposed in any of the churches of our city that have participated in it. In fact, ask God to reveal any and every place where churches have been compromised in any way. Jesus warned that wolves in sheep clothing would come (Matthew 7:15-23), ask Him to reveal such wolves in Athens. Ask God for His children to have courage and faith to flee churches that don’t preach the word, and or are compromised in any way!

Young prophet old prophet!

For the LORD gave me this command: ‘You must not eat or drink anything while you are there, and do not return to Judah by the same way you came.’” 1 Kings 13:17 (NLT)

We must stand on what the Lord has shown us. We are often tested in it. In fact, that is exactly what is happening today! Will we be faithful with what He has said to us? He doesn’t give us more until we are faithful with what He has already revealed! Each of us is responsible for the revelation that He has given us. In the night, that is, when it seems He is quiet, we must remember what He said to us in the light.

The story of the young prophet is unnerving. This guy received a word from the Lord, and it came with very specific instructions. But the young prophet was tested by an older prophet who said something contrary to what the young prophet had heard. The young prophet compromised and it cost him his life! He trusted the older prophet above what God had said to him, when in fact, the older prophet had lied! Yet the younger prophet was accountable for his own compromise, and was soon after killed by a lion!

How many today are compromising what God has said to them because of others? We must stand on the Word, His written Word as well as His prophetic Word that is given to us! The cost of disobedience is very high!

Thank the Lord for speaking to His children today. Ask Him to forgive you of any and every place that you have not stewarded the revelation He has given you! Ask Him to restore His voice in your life. Ask Him to grant you the boldness to obey whatever He says to you, no matter what it is. Tell Him you will be recklessly obedient to all He commands! Ask Him to release a grace across our city to listen and obey our Shepherd and to follow Him wherever He leads (John 10:27).