It has been over a month since my last post and sometimes that is how life is. However, a major life change has happened, and I could not be more excited about how God is moving. After 15 months of being back from our missionary journeys, plugging in wherever we can, God has sent us to a church. God has confirmed in us that we are to be assistant pastors at Living Water Church in Burleson. I have started working here part-time this week, and the more I get to know the pastor, the church and the people; the more convinced I am that God has us right where He wants us.
Things rarely happen how we think that they will. I would have loved to be doing more sooner, but God accomplishes His plans in His timing. It is how we handle the things that the world throws at us and the times of waiting that allows us to determine our destiny. This is the fourth devotion in the Destiny Series [1: Designed for Destiny, 2: Best Possible Signal, 3: Destiny Destroyer (Unforgiveness)].
In a superhero’s life, there are moments when one choice determines their destiny. For Bruce Wayne, the death of his parents could have caused him to become insane or a criminal. However, he chose to use this as an incentive to dispense justice. This choice made him the greatest hero of all time!!!
Sadly, Batman is just a fictional superhero. However, you have the ability to affect your destiny, as well as the destiny of those around you, today. Right Now!!! You do not have to be a billionaire or be special in the eyes of the world. You just have to be willing to listen and be obedient to whatever God speaks.
Read Acts 9:10-20
Here, we meet a certain disciple. Ananias was listening and heard a disturbing word. “Go and pray for Saul of Tarsus”. Saul was known as a destroyer of the church, and he had authority to imprison and kill believers. Ananias had the choice to be obedient against his desire and comfortability or disobey. Because of his obedience, Saul was healed and saved. In effect, all of Paul’s missionary journeys, salvations, churches he established, and books of the Bible that you still read today resulted from Ananias’ obedience. What a destiny for someone who is never mentioned again before or after!
If you are walking with God, you are a certain disciple just like Ananias. You may feel unimportant and meaningless at times; however, as you position yourself to receive from God and are obedient to what He speaks, you become infused with His power and presence. As He leads you to speak and pray for others, God’s presence can be infused into other’s lives. Your choice to walk into your destiny with God has the power to transform you and everyone around you!!!
One tiny word can change, save, or set a life free when spoken out of Obedience and Truth!!!
One simple act can affect a person, a nation, or all of eternity if you are walking with the Spirit into your destiny!!!
Challenge: Take time to listen carefully to Holy Spirit. Write down what He reveals. As He gives a word or action, be obedient to take action, do it or speak it. Talk to a leader if you have questions or need someone to help you be obedient.
Suggested Reading; James 5:17-18, Hebrews 11, Jonah
Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!
Well, once again I am back in Spain. I never imagined that so quickly after an extended trip that God would have us visiting the people and places in both Newcastle, England and Spain that we had left only 6 months ago. As we sat in St. Luke’s in Newcastle, God gave me a word that I did I not share there, but the next night in a time of worship with three friends that we had made there, I did.
In First Samuel 10, we find a story of Samuel and Saul. Within this story, we can find some valuable wisdom for the men and women of God that truly want to bring change to a person, people, or place. “Then Samuel took a flask of oil and poured it on his head, and kissed him and said: “Is it not because the Lord has anointed you commander over His inheritance?” (1 Samuel 10:1). Each one of the sons and daughters of God have been anointed as leaders over the inheritance of the Lord!!! What is the inheritance of he Lord, but souls, cities, nations, and ultimately the world!!!
So how can we as leaders of this inheritance bring true change to each of these 4 areas??? Several verses later, this is revealed! “After that you shall come to the hill of God where the Philistine garrison is. And it will happen, when you have come there to the city, that you will meet a group of prophets coming down from the high place with a stringed instrument, a tambourine, a flute, and a harp before them; and they will be prophesying. Then the Spirit of the Lord will come upon you, and you will prophesy with them and be turned into another man. And let it be, when these signs come to you, that you do as the occasion demands; for God is with you” (10:5-7). The first thing to note is that the mountain of God is in the center of where the enemy has set up camp. Often, God calls us to go to the hardest places. At these places where the enemy gathers his forces, God is wanting His change to come in a mighty way!!! The prophets were coming down from the mountain having been in the presence of God. As they came down, they carried the presence of God with them and this presence was what changed Saul into a different person.
We as sons and daughters of God are called to go up the mountain of God, many times in the very places where the enemy seems to have the greatest presence. However, these prophets did not let the enemy distract them from their main calling. It is our job to go up the mountain and not camp on top of the mountain. We are to go to the presence of God and be carriers of the presence to the people who have not gone up the mountain yet for whatever reason. They may not be able to go up or they may not know the true glory of the Lord. They may be discarded by the enemy. We as men and women of God are to go up the mountain, be filled to overflowing with the Presence of God and to host this presence with us as we go out to the people and places of the world. As we do this, great change cannot help but come about as His presence changes the people into new men and women.
In this passage, everything happened as Samuel said, Saul met the prophets, prophesied with them, was changed, and then guess what happened? “And when he had finished prophesying, he went to the high place” (1 Samuel 10:13). After being changed, Saul went up the mountain of God for himself to the high place. This is always our goal to carry the presence of God to the people and places around us so that they are changed, and then go to the mountain of God so they can be continually transformed themselves into carriers of His Presence!!!
My challenge to you today, is to intentionally make time to be in the presence of the Lord, whatever that may look like to you, and then carry that presence to the world around you. Do not leave the presence of the Lord at home, church, or the conference you just came from. Be a true carrier of His Presence into all the world. Allow God’s Presence to change you, and then carry that life-changing Presence with you to those who need it the most!!! In short, carry the Mountain of God with you so that the mountains of this world are easily moved by Him and His Presence, and the people and places you come into contact with are changed into carriers of His Life-Changing Presence as well!!!
Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!
I want to confess that our time here in Cambodia is very different than what I expected it to be. We have been here more than two weeks now, and God has had us focus on praying and encouraging the staff here at the base in Battambang. When I envisioned coming back to Cambodia where I spent more than two months only two years ago, I thought we would be doing some of the same things as I did before. However, God has us doing things that are quite different but exactly what He needs to be done.
Right now, it is the hot season in Cambodia. Ironically, we came from the hottest part of the season in India to the hottest part of the season in Cambodia. I heard an American who lives here remarking that it was 106 degrees in the shade. Being from Texas, I understand the heat and know it well. However, I do not like how it is so humid here that your clothes are constantly soaked with sweat even when indoors. At any point in time, I could take off my shirt and wring it out and fill a bowl with the sweat. It is not fun and definitely is not attractive, but it is where God needs us to be.
The only relief that we have had from the scorching heat was a violent monsoon that came out of nowhere. It tore up the carport covering and part of the eating area and literally drenched our room before we were able to do anything to stop it. I was outside for less than five minutes rescuing the truck from being demolished and came in dripping wet. I guess it did not really matter because our room was half submerged anyway. Apparently, we got more than two and a half inches in about 30 minutes. After all this, I have found some comfort in this verse, “When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; And through the rivers, they shall not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned, Nor shall the flame scorch you. For I am the Lord your God” (Isaiah 43:2).
While repairing a broken bicycle and dripping with sweat, a lady that has been here a while said something to me that I took as an encouragement from the Lord. She said that right now, in hot season, is exactly the right time to come and encourage the staff. The heat is not fun, classes are about two months from being finished in one of the schools, and most people are worn down at this time. It would definitely be more comfortable to be here not in hot season, but God knew that He needed us here right now to encourage His people.
When God calls us, He is always directing us to what He needs us to do, He is just waiting on us to be obedient and come into line with where He needs us to be.
His people are much more important than our personal comfort! Over and over, we have to remind ourselves that we do not make decisions based on our own comforts. If that were the case, we never would have come to Cambodia, India, or on this faith journey at all.
God gives us the strength to grow beyond our comfort level so that His work may be done where He needs it and at the time He needs it to be done!
Where you are right now, ask yourself. Are you in a place where you are comfortable? Is it pleasant both physically and spiritually? Are you being stretched so that you can grow or are you resting comfortably in what you have?
God constantly wants to be stretching us beyond what we are able to do for two reasons. One, He wants us to grow and be able to do greater things in the Kingdom. Secondly, and more importantly, when we are able to accomplish things that we could never do on our own, He is the only One who will receive glory.
I know that you are sitting there and have the desire to do great things for the Lord and to bring great glory to His name. Ask Holy Spirit right now, where have you settled into a lifestyle of comfort? Ask Holy Spirit to stretch you and do great things through your obedience to Him. Pray that He will give you everything that you need along the way, and trust that He will provide it. Pray that He would use your life to bring great glory to His name!!!
I bless you to know that God is the great provider! He gives strength in our weakness!!! He gives mercy in our failures!!! He gives us the ability to grow and change more and more into His image!!! He gives us a continual life of adventure in obedience so that the comforts of this world do not make us ineffective for His Kingdom!!!
Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!
Well, plans are ever changing here. The Indian culture is a culture of change, and this becomes more evident every day. We will be leaving tomorrow for Dharamapuri instead of today. Knowing that we might not have an opportunity to use internet again for a while, I wanted to share what happened this weekend.
Friday, we got the privilege to go and preach at a small Fasting-Prayer gathering once again, and God supernaturally changed what I was going to preach and gave me a brand new word that combined the Parable of the Sower with John 15. This was a very powerful word that touched the people there greatly, and I know it was from the Lord, because I can hardly remember what I even spoke about.
Saturday, we went with Pastor Binny once again to a girls college in Kolar where they were having a Thanksgiving meeting. It is the end of the year and everyone has taken their exams and are getting ready to head home for their summer break. They had gathered to thank the Lord and give testimony about everything God had done this school year. It was amazing to hear the testimonies about how God had raised up a prayer community in the group and by the end of the school year everyone was a part of it. There was testimonies of divine healings, provision, and so much more. Katie got the opportunity to share about the ministry and journey that God is taking us on and even had some spontaneous preaching.
Later, I was given the chance to speak about giving thanks. Pastor Binny told me on the way that I was to share about this topic. I spent the hour on the way to the college asking the Lord what He would have me share about giving thanks. God brought to mind a passage of scripture and gave me some important revelation about thanking Him. This is what I want to share with you.
Most of us are familiar with the passage of the feeding of the five thousand found in the gospels. In John 6:1-13, Jesus sees that need of the people and is more than willing to respond. However, He wants to partner with the Apostles in meeting this need. All the Apostles see is an unsolvable problem and such a small portion of food that they see no way that they can bring resolution to this problem. “Jesus took the loaves, and when He had given thanks He distributed them… and likewise the fish, as much as they wanted”(John 6:11) and there were 12 baskets left over. Five thousand men, as well as women and children, benefited from the blessing of thankfulness.
In our world, it is so easy to see the needs and the problems. We are overwhelmed by these things in our daily news and it seem impossible for us to do anything to change it. How can we end abortion, stop sex trafficking, stop wars, bring governmental reform, feed the hungry, end sickness…? When we think of the the problems, we are placing our eyes on ourselves and our circumstances. What can I do? However, when we bring the smallest ability and blessing to the Lord and give thanks for it, He cannot help but multiply it!!! Thanking God takes our eyes off of ourselves and our problems, and places them upon Him. When our eyes are on Him, we begin to see things from the heavenly perspective and the impossible things become the reality that God intended them to be!!! It is by giving thanks to God in the small and great, that the gates of heaven are opened to pour out even more blessings of abundance upon us. God will always multiply what we have if we thank Him for it! It comes from Him and is for His glory, and when we recognize this, He will give us more!!!
How have you been thankful to the Lord?
Are you thanking Him for the smallest of blessings?
Are you giving him thanks and glory or are you taking it for yourself?
Ask Holy Spirit to reveal all the blessing of the Lord in your life. As you recognize these things, give Him thanks. In the giving of thanks, the blessings we have are revealed because our focus is changed. Our focus is no longer selfish and on us, but we focus on the person of Jesus and all He has done. Unthankfulness is selfishness. In any area where you have been selfish and focused on your own problems in unthankfulness, ask for forgiveness. Ask Holy Spirit to change your focus to one of a thankful heart. Ask Him to help you to be thankful in all things. His blessings will flow more freely as thankfulness is released in your heart!!! I bless you with a thankful heart that brings forth an abundance of blessing in order that God may receive all the glory!!!
Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!