Tag Archives: fellowship

Celebrate Good Times!!! 39/40

You are invited to join us for the Celebrate to Accelerate fast! Please review Celebrate to Accelerate and other words for the reasons behind the fast as well as daily encouragement.

Here we are, the last two days of The 40.  If you have not already, you are probably dreaming about what you will eat first.  Please remember to break the fast simple and slow. Your stomach will have shrunk and food will be more difficult to digest.  Chew food throughly and eat small portions.  It should take at least three days to get back to eating what you were eating before the fast.  Be conscious of what your body is doing, and any discomfort means you should slow the breaking of the fast.  All that being said, the day of celebration is almost here.  We have sought the Lord together in the fasting, let’s continue to seek Him together in the celebration!

Too often, we become people of extremes.  We are either completely for something or totally against it.  In issues of morality this may be good, but this can get us into trouble in other areas.  Jesus was a man of grace and truth. If you are too full of grace, anything goes and truth gets thrown out the window. If you are totally focused on truth, there is not room for the grace that abounds to do its work in you.  

Another area we see this evident is the Spirit and The Word.  Some people focus so much on the Spirit, they end up doing whatever they want and the Word becomes useless to them.  However, some people are so focused on The Word that they get bound up in religious rules and doctrine and do not allow the Bible to be The Living Word.  

In the same way, we could become so focused on the power, blessing, and benefits of fasting that we begin to believe that this is the only way God will work.  Often, people think that I am the fasting one and do not eat or do not like food, because they do not take the time to get to know me.  One reason I have focused so much on fasting is because it seems that their is almost no teaching on it in the American church.  There is so much focus on fellowship, feasting, and celebration and almost nothing about the benefits and blessing of prayer and fasting.  Both have their time and place, but one does not cancel out the other.  

This was a problem during the life of Jesus.  Which is better: to eat and drink or to fast and pray?  Let’s see what Jesus has to say about it:

Luke 7:33-35 For John the Baptist came neither eating bread nor drinking wine, and you say, ‘He has a demon.’ The Son of Man has come eating and drinking, and you say, ‘Look, a glutton and a  winebibber, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!’ But wisdom is justified by all her children.”

John the Baptizer was Jesus’ cousin who came at a time that needed a message of humility and repentance.  He was in line for the priesthood and therefore never would lack a meal in his life if he continued in the natural order of things.  However, God called him to a life set apart from the culture in order that he could not only be a man of humility and repentance, but so that he could share this message from a transformed life and by being a living example.  Repentance and humility was needed in the people to prepare the way for the new revelation of The Truth, Jesus.  

Because of his lifestyle, those who did not agree with John said he had a demon and was not from God.  They would much prefer to eat, drink, and be merry.  No need to repent and humble yourself when you could enjoy the pleasures of this world.  Often, we ignore the present word of The Lord because we do not want come into line with it.

However, these same people had nothing good to say when Jesus came along either.  Nearly every time we see Jesus, He is with people in their houses or sitting around a table at a meal.  He is constantly celebrating and feasting as He ministers to the people.  He also multiplies food to make sure that everyone gets plenty even to abundance.  The people who wanted John to be more free and to celebrate more begin to accuse Jesus of being too free and celebratory.  They said he was sinning by giving into the lust of the flesh.  Too much food, too much wine, and too much grace must be in his life.  He cannot be from God.

These people have no wisdom, only a desire to follow the lust of their flesh to do what they want, and the desire to make themselves look better than everyone else.  It is easier to criticize people for how they act than to examine our own lives and submit them to God that He may transform us into His image.  Let’s humbly offer our bodies to The Lord Jesus as living sacrifices to do what He wants in us and through us.  Whether we are fasting or feasting, we will sin if we have wrong hearts, wrong words, or wrong actions.  

My encouragement for us today is to focus on Jesus and be obedient to what He is calling us to do.  We do not need to look around us and degrade or exalt ourselves because of how they look or what we may be doing.  We are called to examine ourselves and submit ourselves to God.  As we walk in submission and obedience we will be transformed into the children of The Kingdom that we were created to be.

Jesus, help me to always look to You and You alone for approval.  I do not desire people of this world to consent to my actions, but I want to align with You, Your Word, and Your Way!  I want to praise, honor, and glorify You in my actions, words, and even thoughts that You may be glorified in me and that Your heart would be exhibited from me.

Practical –

  • Submit to Holy Spirit
  • Ask to hear His Words
  • Walk and live in obedience to all He reveals

Be blessed today to walk constantly coming more into line with Jesus and His way and to exhibit the same grace and truth that He walked in.  May you truly become the child of God you were created to be as The Kingdom is accelerated in and through you!

Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!

Partnered To Possess (Live It Out) 35/40

You are invited to join us for the Celebrate to Accelerate fast! Please review Celebrate to Accelerate and other words for the reasons behind the fast as well as daily encouragement.

The end is near! We are close to the completion of our commitment. Do not falter or waver from what God has spoken for you to do. Paul encourages us to run the race to win. What are we gaining? What is our prize? Jesus is our Great Reward! Let’s never forget that.  

We have been encouraged to be a witness in four increasing steps. We must:

  1. Know God, more and more each day.
  2. Ask and Pray for Him to give us His heart and to be a witness.
  3. Speak and Share the wonderful works of God and our daily testimony of His work.
  4. Act in Obedience with everything we are given to do.

Today we will discuss the last step:     

5. Live a life in accordance to The Word.

Let’s unpack this a little more. Today, more than ever, we have seen and know people who are much less than authentic.  The daily scams and identity thefts happening all the time have bred a general distrust of our fellow man.  In one sense, when we meet someone new, we are trying to prove that we are who we say we are instead of taking each other at our word.  At one time, you could shake hands and make a deal on that alone.  We trusted each other.  The vows and convenant that took place at a marriage ceremony would never be broken “until death do we part“. Because our society as a whole has become untrustworthy, everyone is looking for hypocrites and holes in your story before you ever meet them.  

Because people want The Truth so badly, they try to prove the authenticity of everything and everyone they come into contact with.  When we come and begin to tell someone about The Way, The Truth, and The Life, they will be looking at us and our lives as a litmus test of what we are saying. 

If we are not walking in The Word and living a life of obedience, what makes us any different than the telemarketer that calls them 10 times a day? 

Let’s move to the Word to see what God has to say about this after Moses has died.  Joshua has taken over as leader to bring Israel into The Promised Land, and God has promised to be with them and given them the land. However, they have to partner with Him, acting in obedience, and go in and take the land, little by little.  After many years of battle and taking the land, the people grow weary and begin to slack off in taking the land from their enemies. Joshua has this to say to them:

Joshua 18:3 Then Joshua said to the children of Israel: “How long will you neglect to go and possess the land which the Lord God of your fathers has given you? 

This should be a stiff rebuke to us as we examine what it means to be a witness. As we have seen, God says “Ask of Me and I will give you the nations…”Psalm 2:8.  As we have asked, God has faithfully given, but we must live a life of continually partnering with Him to fully receive what He has given us.  

If you look at the word possess in the original Hebrew this is what it means:

to own, to seize and take control of, have complete power over and be manifested through their speech and actions, to make the owner, to enter in and control firmly,

We must not just go into the harvest, but we must possess the souls and nations that God has given us.  Holy Spirit does the work, but we must do our part in continually being obedient to Him and His word.  As this happens, we will be true, authentic witnesses for The Kingdom! 

Do you possess all that God intended and has given you??? 

Jesus says something similar regarding this subject:

Luke 9:23 Then He said to them all, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me.”

Every single one of us should be desiring to come after Jesus in doing what He did while He was on the earth, and greater! Jesus says, we must deny ourselves, our own sinful, selfish desires that would cause us to walk in the ways of the world. We must take up our cross, our connection to Jesus which has brought us into unbroken fellowship with Him. We must do this every single day without fail.  Then, we must follow Him!  This is where we live and walk out our faith practically with Him every day.  

God has given you influence, responsibility, authority! What are you doing with it?  

Are you neglecting it fully or in part

My encouragement for us today is to live out The Truth in our daily lives. We must follow Jesus and do all He is calling us to do in daily life. We must remain humble and repentant as Holy Spirit reveals issues that need to be dealt with. We must be obedient in doing all He calls us to do. We must live our lives every day coming more into line with the revelation of Truth we have been given.  This is who we are; we are his true, authentic witnesses. He has given us a harvest of souls and nations to possess. May we partner with Him in a real way by becoming increasingly obedient every single day. 

Jesus, I desire to truly follow in Your footsteps. Help me to deny the fleshly desires within me that cause me to want to please myself. I want to take up The Truth of The Good News You have given and walk in obedience to what You are saying. I want to do this every single day even as You have given me a great promised harvest to go in and possess. Help me to live out the gospel even as I speak it forth and act in obedience to what You are revealing! 

Practical –

  • Ask Holy Spirit to help you to know Him deeper than ever before
  • Pray that you receive the Father’s heart of compassion for souls and nations
  • Speak out the wonderful works of God, the testimony you have been given
  • Act in obedience to do everything God has called you to
  • Live a life of continual obedience, renewal, and following in Jesus’ footsteps

Be blessed today with the ability to live faithfully in following Jesus in all He said and did! May you fully possess the land God has given you as you are accelerated in The Kingdom!

Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!

Advance The Kingdom 22/40

You are invited to join us for the Celebrate to Accelerate fast! Please review Celebrate to Accelerate and other words for the reasons behind the fast as well as daily encouragement

Well done!  We are now past the halfway mark, past Daniel’s precedent of 21 days, and beginning week 4 of The 40.  Do not waver! Do not falter! Press into Jesus, and may His Kingdom be accelerated in and through you!

This morning, I felt The Lord highlight one word, “Advance“.  This word means a lot to me for different reasons, but one of the reasons is this is an official military term, in my mind at least.  As we move forward into uncharted territory, God is leading and guiding.  He has gone before us to direct us in the right way we should go (John 10:4). Yesterday, the focus was on Touching The Kingdom, and the seeking of direction and revelation through humility, hunger, repentance, prayer, and fasting.  This should be our way of life until we receive our orders.   Then, we must “Advance” into all God has for us.  

Even understanding a proper definition of advance gives us a clue into what God is speaking to us today. 

Advance: 

  • Move forward in a purposeful way (Help us all to move forward with Your plans and in Your purposes Lord!)
  • Accelerate growth or progress of (We desire to progress and grow in You, Lord)
  • Raise to a higher rank (Thank you for raising us up to higher ranks in The Kingdom as we faithfully carry out our assignments at the level we are now.)
  • To lift up (Lift us up into heavenly realms with You)
  • Bring forward in time (Bring us all forward in time that we may be mature believers on mission with You!)
  • My personal definition would be the effective assisting in hastening a process or bringing about a desired end.  May we all be advanced in our own lives, and be used to advance The Kingdom of God today!

    We can see this happening throughout the entire Bible, but we will focus on what is taking place in Acts 13.  The setting of this passage is the rapid growth of the church.  If you remember, they were first called Christians at Antioch, literally meaning “little Christ“.  The gospel is being proclaimed, and persecution has taken the life of James the apostle.  This was the first of the apostles to be martyred.  Peter was set to be killed as well, but through constant prayer, God miraculously delivers Him.  This is where we pick up in our reading.  

    The church is at a pivotal point in history. They must come to a decision if the persecution and death is too great a sacrifice.  Should they calm down in what they are doing, or should they continue to advance The Kingdom in spite of all this.  

    Acts 13:1-2 Now in the church that was at Antioch there were certain prophets and teachers: Barnabas, Simeon who was called Niger, Lucius of Cyrene, Manaen who had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch, and Saul. As they ministered to the Lord and fasted, the Holy Spirit said, “Now separate to Me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.” 

    The response of the early church to the persecution and death of James and near martyrdom of Peter is to gather together and minister to The Lord. 

    How was this done? In Acts 2:42, 47 and 6:4 we find some clues: continue steadfastly in apostles doctrine, fellowship, breaking of bread, prayer, praising God, and ministry of The Word.  In this passage we see, they also fasted.  Fellowship, worship, prayer, and fasting are literally ministry to The Lord. As they ministered to The Lord, Holy Spirit revealed what they were to do next.  

    It is interesting, they did not have a vision-casting meeting. They did not form a committee to talk about business. They did not try to figure out the most logical business model to follow. They gathered the leaders to worship, prayer, and fasting.  It is a sad fact that in many churches today, call a church business eating and meeting and everyone shows up, but call a church prayer meeting more crickets show up than people.  However, if you call a prayer meeting and call people to fast, this is like what happened in the early church. Only hungry people allowed.  This is where Holy Spirit brought revelation of what was to happen next.  

    When Holy Spirit released this revelation, they did not end the meeting and say lets get to work. Why? Because this was not the point of the meeting.  They were there to worship God with everything they had to give.  As a result, when they received revelation this is what they did:

    Vs. 3 Then, having fasted and prayed, and laid hands on them, they sent them away.

    They continued in worship, prayer, and thanksgiving. What Holy Spirit revealed in a time of worship, prayer, and fasting was commissioned and sent out by worship, prayer, and fasting.  The focus was ministering to God.  The commissioning and sending out of Barnabas and Saul for the advancement of The Kingdom was part of this same ministering to God.  No man or even church was glorified in the sending out of these men. 

    Verse 4 begins with “So, being sent out by the Holy Spirit…”  There was no doubt in anyone’s mind that this was a work of Holy Spirit for the advancement of The Kingdom.  This is before Saul had proven himself to the church.  He is still in the care of Barnabas and there is probably still those who do not fully trust him.  That did not matter when Holy Spirit had set him apart to send him out. In the very next chapter Saul is violently persecuted and stoned. The strength knowing Holy Spirit had called him and sent him out enabled him to return to the very cities that this took place.  

    My encouragement for us today is that as we gather together daily to worship, pray, and fast, whether together in body or spirit, Holy Spirit will bring wisdom, understanding, and revelation that only comes from Him.  As He does, may we all be strengthened with might to advance The Kingdom and walk in what He has called us to.  Nothing can hold you back from advancing to the next level with Him if you are living and walking as His partner.

    Practical –

    • Ask for revelation of how you can minister to God today
    • As you minister to Him, seek wisdom, revelation, and understanding that only comes from Him
    • As He reveals, ask for the strength and ability to obey
    • Continue in Worship and ministry to Him
    • Obey all He directs you to do

    Be blessed with the ability to truly advance The Kingdom in partnership with Holy Spirit. May you receive wisdom, understanding, revelation and might as you minister to Holy Spirit.  May this truly accelerate The Kingdom in and through your life!

    Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!

    Glutton & Drunkard 39/40

    You are invited to join us for The Propel Fast! Please review Propelled To The Next Level and other words for the reasons behind the fast as well as daily encouragement!

    Here we are, the last two days of The 40.  If you have not already, you are probably dreaming about what you will eat first.  Please remember to break the fast simple and slow. Your stomach will have shrunk and food will be more difficult to digest.  Chew food throughly and eat small portions.  It should take at least three days to get back to eating what you were eating before the fast.  Be conscious of what your body is doing, and any discomfort means you should slow the breaking of the fast.  All that being said, the day of celebration is almost here.  We have sought the Lord together in the fasting, let’s continue to seek Him together in the celebration!

    Too often, we become people of extremes.  We are either completely for something or totally against it.  In issues of morality this may be good, but this can get us into trouble in other areas.  Jesus was a man of grace and truth. If you are too full of grace, anything goes and truth gets thrown out the window. If you are totally focused on truth, there is not room for the grace that abounds to do its work in you.  

    Another area we see this evident is the Spirit and The Word.  Some people focus so much on the Spirit, they end up doing whatever they want and the Word becomes useless to them.  However, some people are so focused on The Word that they get bound up in religious rules and doctrine and do not allow the a Bible to be The Living Word.  

    In the same way, we could become so focused on the power, blessing, and benefits of fasting that we begin to believe that this is the only way God will work.  Often, people think that I am the fasting man and do not eat or do not like food, because they do not take the time to get to know me.  One reason I have focused so much on fasting is because it seems that their is almost no teaching on it in the American church.  There is so much focus on fellowship, feasting, and celebration and almost nothing about the benefits and blessing of prayer and fasting.  Both have their time and place, but one does not cancel out the other.  

    This was a problem during the life of Jesus.  Which is better to eat and drink or to fast and pray?  Let’s see what Jesus has to say about it:

    Luke 7:33-35 For John the Baptist came neither eating bread nor drinking wine, and you say, ‘He has a demon.’ The Son of Man has come  eating and drinking, and you say, ‘Look, a glutton and a  winebibber, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!’ But wisdom is justified by all her children.”

    John the Baptizer was Jesus’ cousin who came at a time that needed a message of humility and repentance.  He was in line for the priesthood and therefore never would lack a meal in his life if he continued in the natural order of things.  However, God called him to a life set apart from the culture in order that he could not only be a man of humility and repentance, but so that he could share this message from a transformed life and by being a living example.  Repentance and humility was needed in the people to prepare the way for the new revelation of The Truth, Jesus.  

    Because of his lifestyle, those who did not agree with John said he had a demon and was not from God.  They would much prefer to eat, drink, and be merry.  No need to repent and humble yourself when you could enjoy the pleasures of this world.  Often, we ignore the present word of The Lord because we do not want come into line with it.

    However, these same people had nothing good to say when Jesus came along either.  Nearly every time we see Jesus, He is with people in their houses or sitting around a table at a meal.  He is constantly celebrating and feasting as He ministers to the people.  He also multiplies food to make sure that everyone gets plenty even to abundance.  The people who wanted John to be more free and to celebrate more begin to accuse Jesus of being too free and celebratory.  They said he was sinning by giving into the lust of the flesh.  Too much food, too much wine, and too much grace must be in his life.  He cannot be from God.

    These people have no wisdom,only a desire to follow the lust of their flesh to do what they want, and the desire to make themselves look better than everyone else.  It is easier to criticize people for how they act than to examine our own lives and submit them to God that He may transform us into His image.  Let’s humbly offer our bodies to The Lord Jesus as living sacrifices to do what He wants in us and through us.  Whether we are fasting or feasting, we will sin if we have wrong hearts, wrong words, or wrong actions.  

    My encouragement for us today is to focus on Jesus and be obedient to what He is calling us to do.  We do not need to look around us and degrade or exalt others because of how they look or what they may be doing.  We are called to examine ourselves and submit ourselves to God.  As we walk in submission and obedience we will be transformed into the children of The Kingdom that we were created to be.

    Jesus, help me to always look to You and You alone for approval.  I do not desire people of this world to consent to my actions, but I want to align with You, Your Word, and Your Way!  I want to praise, honor, and glorify You in my actions, words, and even thoughts that you may be glorified in me and that Your heart would be exhibited from me.

    Practical –

    • Submit to Holy Spirit
    • Ask to hear His Words
    • Walk and live in obedience to all He reveals

    Be blessed today to walk constantly coming more into line with Jesus and His way and to exhibit the same grace and truth that He walked in.  May you truly become the child of God you were created to be as you are propelled into new levels with Him!

    Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!

    Possess The Land (Live) 35/40

    You are invited to join us for The Propel Fast! Please review Propelled To The Next Level and other words for the reasons behind the fast as well as daily encouragement.

    The end is near! We are close to the completion of our commitment. Do not falter or waver from what God has spoken for you to do. Paul encourages us to run the race to win. What are we gaining? What is our prize? Jesus is our Great Reward! Let’s never forget that. 

    We have been encouraged to be a witness in four increasing steps. We must:

    1. Know God, more and more each day.
    2. Ask and Pray for Him to give us His heart and to be a witness.
    3. Speak and Share the wonderful works of God and our daily testimony of His work.
    4. Act in Obedience with everything we are given to do.

    Today we will discuss the last step:

        5. Live a life in accordance to The Word.

    Let’s unpack this a little more. Today, more than ever, we have seen and know people who are much less than authentic.  The daily scams and identity thefts have bred a general distrust of our fellow man.  In one sense, when we meet someone new, we are trying to prove that we are who we say we are instead of taking each other at our word.  At one time, you could shake hands and make a deal on that alone.  We trusted each other.  The vows and convenant that took place at a marriage ceremony would never be broken “until death do we part“.

    Because our society as a whole has become untrustworthy, everyone is looking for hypocrites and holes in your story before you ever meet them.  Because people want the Truth so badly, they try to prove the authenticity of everything they come into contact with.  When we come and begin to tell someone about the Way, Truth, and Life, they will be looking at us and our lives as a litmus test of what we are saying. If we are not walking in The Word and living a life of obedience, what makes us any different than the telemarketer that calls them 10 times a day?

    Let’s move to the Word to see what God has to say about this after Moses has died, Joshua has taken over as leader to bring Israel into The Promised Land. God has promised to be with them and have given them the land. However, they have to partner with Him, acting in obedience, and go in and take the land, little by little.  After many years of battle and taking the land, the people grow weary and begin to slack off in taking the land from their enemies. Joshua has this to say to them:

    Joshua 18:3 Then Joshua said to the children of Israel: “How long will you neglect to go and possess the land which the Lord God of your fathers has given you? 

    This should be a stiff rebuke to us as we examine what it means to be a witness. As we have seen, God says “Ask of Me and I will give you the nations…” (Psalm 2:8).  As we have asked, God has faithfully given, but we must live a life of continually partnering with Him to receive what He has given us.  If you look at the word possess in the original Hebrew this is what it means:

    to own, to seize and take control of, have complete power over and be manifested through their speech and actions, to make the owner, to enter in and control firmly,

    We must not just go into the harvest, but we must possess the souls and nations that God has given us.  Holy Spirit does the work, but we must do our part in continually being obedient to Him and His word.  As this happens, we will be true, authentic witness for The Kingdom!

    Do you possess all that God intended and has given???

    Jesus says something similar regarding this subject:

    Luke 9:23 Then He said to them all, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me.”

    Every single one of us should be desiring to come after Jesus in doing what He did while He was on the earth, and greater! Jesus says, we must deny ourselves, our own sinful, selfish desires that would cause us to walk in the ways of the world. We must take up our cross, our connection to Jesus, what has brought us into unbroken fellowship with Him. We must do this every single day without fail.  Then, we must follow Him!  This is where we live and walk out our faith practically with Him every day. 

    God has given you influence, responsibility, authority! What are you doing with it? 

    Are you neglecting it fully or in part?

    My encouragement for us today is to live out The Truth in our daily lives. We must follow Jesus and do all He is calling us to do in daily life. We must remain humble and repentant as Holy Spirit reveals issues that need to be dealt with. We must be obedient in doing all He calls us to do. We must live our lives every day coming more into line with the revelation of Truth we have been given.  This is who we are; we are his true, authentic witnesses. He has given us a harvest of souls and nation to possess. May we partner with Him in a real way by becoming increasingly obedient every single day.

    Jesus, I desire to truly follow in Your footsteps. Help me to deny the fleshly desires within me to please myself. I want to take up The Truth of the good news You have given and walk in obedience to what you are saying. I want to do this every single day even as you have given me a great Promised harvest to go in and possess. Help me to live out the gospel even as I speak it forth and act in obedience to what you are revealing!

    Practical –

    • Ask Holy Spirit to help you to know Him deeper than ever before
    • Pray that you receive the Father’s heart of compassion for souls and nations
    • Speak out the wonderful works of God, the testimony you have been given
    • Act in obedience to do everything God has called you to
    • Live a life of continual obedience, renewal, and following in Jesus’ footsteps

    Be blessed today with the ability to live faithfully in following Jesus in all He said and did! May you fully possess the land God has given you as you are propelled to the next level!

    Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!

    Advance 22/40

    You are invited to join us for The Propel Fast! Please review Propelled To The Next Level and other words for the reasons behind the fast as well as daily encouragement!

    Well done!  We are now past the halfway mark, past Daniel’s precedent of 21 days, and beginning week 4 of The 40.  Do not waver! Do not falter! Press into Jesus, and be propelled into the next level with Him!!

    This morning, I felt The Lord highlight one word, “Advance“.  This word means a lot to me for different reasons, but one of the reasons is this is an official military term, in my mind at least.  As we move forward into uncharted territory, God is leading and guiding.  He has gone before us to direct us in the right way we should go (John 10:4). Yesterday, the focus was on Touching The Kingdom, and the seeking of direction and revelation through humility, hunger, repentance, prayer, and fasting.  This should be our way of life until we receive our orders.   Then, we must “Advance” into all God has for us.  

    Even understanding a proper definition of advance gives us a clue into what God is speaking to us today. 

    Advance: 

  • Move forward in a purposeful way (Help us all to move forward with Your plans and in Your purposes Lord!)
  • Accelerate growth or progress of (We desire to progress and grow in You, Lord)
  • Raise to a higher rank (Thank you for raising us up to higher ranks in The Kingdom as we faithfully carry out our assignments at the level we are now.)
  • To lift up (Lift us up into heavenly realms with You)
  • Bring forward in time (Bring us all forward in time that we may be mature believers on mission with You!)
  • My personal definition would be the effective assisting in hastening a process or bringing about a desired end.  May we all be advanced in our own lives, and be used to advance The Kingdom of God today!

    In the Word, we can see this happening throughout the entire Bible, but we will focus on what is taking place in Acts 13.  The setting of this passage is the rapid growth of the church.  If you remember, they were first called Christians at Antioch, literally meaning “little Christ”.  The gospel is being proclaimed, and persecution has taken the life of James the apostle.  This was the first of the apostles to be martyred.  Peter was set to be killed as well, but through constant prayer, God miraculously delivers Him.  This is where we pick up in our reading.  

    The church is at a pivotal point in history. They must come to a decision if the persecution and death is too much and they should calm down in what they are doing, or if they should continue to advance The Kingdom in spite of all this.  

    Acts 13:1-2 Now in the church that was at Antioch there were certain prophets and teachers: Barnabas, Simeon who was called Niger, Lucius of Cyrene, Manaen who had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch, and Saul. As they ministered to the Lord and fasted, the Holy Spirit said, “Now separate to Me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.” 

    The response of the early church to the persecution and death of James and near martyrdom of Peter is to gather together and minister to The Lord. 

    How was this done? In Acts 2:42, 47 and 6:4 we find some clues: continue steadfastly in apostles doctrine, fellowship, breaking of bread, prayer, praising God, and ministry of The Word.  In this passage we see, they also fasted.  Fellowship, worship, prayer, and fasting are literally ministry to The Lord. As they ministered to The Lord, Holy Spirit revealed what they were to do next.  

    It is interesting, they did not have a vision-casting meeting. They did not form a committee to talk about business. They did not try to figure out the most logical business model to follow. They gathered the leaders to worship, prayer, and fasting.  It is a sad fact that in many churches today, call a church business meeting and everyone shows up, but call a church prayer meeting more crickets show up than people.  However, if you call a prayer meeting without food and call a people to fast, this is like what happened in the early church. Only hungry people allowed.  This is where Holy Spirit brought revelation of what was to happen next.  

    When Holy Spirit released this revelation, they did not end the meeting and say lets get to work. Why? Because this was not the point of the meeting.  They were there to worship God with everything they had to give.  As a result, when they received revelation this is what they did:

    Vs. 3 Then, having fasted and prayed, and laid hands on them, they sent them away.

    They continued in worship, prayer, and thanksgiving. What Holy Spirit revealed in a time of worship, prayer, and fasting was commissioned and sent out by worship, prayer, and fasting.  The focus was ministering to God and the commissioning and sending out of Barnabas and Saul for the advancement of The Kingdom was part of this ministering to God.  No man or even church was glorified in the sending out of these men. 

    Verse 4 begins with “So, being sent out by the Holy Spirit…”  There was no doubt in anyone’s mind that this was a work of Holy Spirit for the advance of The Kingdom.  This is before Saul had prove himself to the church.  He is still in the care of Barnabas and there is probably still those who do not fully trust him.  That did not matter when Holy Spirit had set him apart to send him out. In the very next chapter Saul is violently persecuted and stoned. The strength knowing Holy Spirit had called him and sent him out enabled him to return to the very cities that this took place.  

    My encouragement for us today is that as we gather together daily to worship, pray, and fast, whether together in body or spirit, Holy Spirit will bring wisdom, understanding, and revelation that only comes from Him.  As He does, may we all be strengthened with might to advance The Kingdom and walk in what He has called us to.  Nothing can hold you back from advancing to the next level with Him if you are living and walking as His partner.

    Practical –

    • Ask for revelation of how you can minister to God today
    • As you minister to Him, seek wisdom, revelation, and understanding that only comes from Him
    • As He reveals, ask for the strength and ability to obey
    • Continue in Worship and ministry to Him
    • Obey all He directs you to do

    Be blessed with the ability to truly advance The Kingdom in partnership with Holy Spirit. May you receive wisdom, understanding, revelation and might as you minister to Holy Spirit.  May this propel you to the next level with Him!

    Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!

    The Lost Relics of the Simple Gospel and Our Testimony

    It has been almost a week in updating from my time in Spain, and schedules got so busy that I never really had time to sit down and share more about what had taken place since my last post. So much so, in fact, that I’m actually back in the states; having arrived a few nights ago.

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    Amada, our translator and worship leader for the meeting.

    On Thursday, we were scheduled to go to a house church-like meeting. It was the first one of its kind in the area and was put on by a woman in the church that John and I partnered with in Torrevieja. We were unsure of what to expect in going, but it turned out to be wonderful! It was obvious this woman came with expectancy for God to move and had gone out and done her duty in bringing in the people! She was a person of peace and I bless her for her obedience! I was going to share the Gospel with the Evangecube and it was a nice surprise to have a new translator; a young woman named Amada. She had been through YWAM Madrid in recent years and led worship at our meeting as well. She and I connected really well and I had the joy prophesying over her and in getting to know her joy-filled spirit all the more afterwards as we went out to dinner.

    After worshipping together, I shared the Gospel with everyone and when I came to the point where each person must make a choice of whether they want to ask Jesus into their heart and receive eternal life and salvation, no one really responded. Suddenly, our expectant host asked me to share my testimony of what Jesus did for me and why I chose Jesus. I chose a picture on the cube showing man surrounded in darkness, contrasted with God in the light. I shared how I spent my life afflicted with sickness and pain; and drowning in bitterness, anger, unforgiveness, fear, and unbelief in being abandoned by my birth father and step father. I explained how I reached the end of my rope and was desperate for hope and deliverance from the darkness I was dying in. I spoke of how God stepped in in my brokenness, surrounded me with the Love of the Father; and how Jesus came in and healed me of all of my ailments and restored my life through His sacrifice on the cross.

    Our host then asked if John and my mother-in-love would share their testimonies. They shared about how God reconciled them to Himself in revealing their need for a Savior; and that simply being a good person or operating out of religion cannot save you. Suddenly, those who knew Jesus began passing around the Evangecube, picking a picture on it they most identified with, and shared their testimonies of Jesus’ work in their lives. It was beautiful! We then came back to where we began…we must all make a choice. Life or death. Light or darkness. The lost in the room had become so moved at the testimonies of Jesus that with tear-filled eyes, they responded with choosing Life! We led them in a prayer of salvation and Pastor Pablo asked if I would lay hands on and pray for them. God touched them mightily and their countenances were lighter and brighter.

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    Marissa (left), Pastor Elsa, Maria, Ana (our host), and Augustine. Marissa, Maria, and Augustine gave their lives to Jesus!

    In this time, Holy Spirit reminded me of a message my Husband sent me the prior morning from our cousin. She had been praying for the team and Holy Spirit showed her a picture of me running with fire, coming up to an older bald man with glasses, embracing him, and transferring the fire to him. Suddenly I realized sitting before me was that very man He had shown her. Being filled with fire, my spirit began burning to share this word with Augustine, who had just given his life to the Lord. God knew his time had come and He had a special message and impartation of commission for this new son!
    Expect the unexpected! 

    As I shared the vision with Augustine, I began to see how he connected with much of what God had revealed to me in the past seven years of going to Spain. He became flabbergasted and Holy Spirit downloaded to me His prophetic decree to His son. I began to prophesy God’s design for Augustine, that he was to take hold of the torch and blaze a trail across all of Spain. I saw Jesus come behind him and pour out a bucket of liquid fire upon him and everywhere he ran, wildfires raged across the land. He had searched the land for a Spaniard who would say, “yes!” to the call, and had been declined many times. His hand was extended, in high hopes that this son would take hold of Him and answer the call. The look of shock grew on Augustine’s face as tears welled up in his eyes; and he responded with, “I don’t think I’m strong enough for that.” The beauty of it all is that we aren’t meant to be able to! It is not by might, nor by power, but by the Spirit of God dwelling within us, that we are empowered to fulfill our destiny and set the world ablaze for the Glory of God! He then responded with a joy-filled “yes!”, stood up and embraced me. We then laid hands him, prayed for him, imparted the fire of God, and commissioned him to set his nation on fire! He left a completely different person than when he had entered! Praise the Lord!!!

    I would like to propose to you a simple principle, an often forgotten lost relic of the evangelical life…the marriage of the Simple Gospel and the Word of our Testimony.  It is by these two things that we overcome the kingdom of darkness and establish the Kingdom of Heaven here on earth. The utter power of the Simple Gospel to break the bonds of wickedness, loose the yoke of oppression, heal all afflictions and diseases, fling wide the prison doors, and set the captives free will never diminish or fade. It will never decrease in effectiveness or cease to produce Kingdom developing results. However, when partnered with the Word of our Testimony, all deception from the enemy is crushed and obliterated; for no one can deny your testimony!

    We are called to be martyrs, faithful witnesses of what we have seen and known to be true!

    THIS is what I have seen and know to be true: Jesus came, He died MY death upon the cross to purchase me and pay my eternal debt that could not be paid, His body was broken to purchase my healing and deliverance. He rose again victoriously conquering all the powers of hell and setting me free to be one with Him. He is seated at the right hand of the Father ever interceding for me; and He has given me all power and authority under Heaven to do as He did, and even more. He sent His Holy Spirit to abide within me to be my guide, comforter, healer, friend, breath, life, power, and freedom.

    Acts 1:8 (TPT)
    “‘But I promise you this—the Holy Spirit will come upon you and you will be filled with power (you will be seized with power). And you will be My messengers (witnesses, martyrs) to Jerusalem, throughout Judea, the distant provinces—even to the remotest places on earth!'”

    Because of all of these things, I am healed of four “life-long, incurable” afflictions, I hold in my arms two beautiful children because of that healing, I am married to a wonderful and fiery man who every day is becoming more and more a reflection of the One Who holds my heart. I am forgiven, free, bold, unashamed, undignified, a Burning One set on seeing the desire of Jesus’ heart made manifest among the nations…that they would be set ablaze for His coming!!! I get to partner with Jesus in fulfilling His mission through this Great CO-Mission! I get to go into all the world to see Him do for others what He has done for me!

    When we testify of what Jesus has done, we create an atmosphere for Him to come do it again! It is simple. It is Holy. It is powerful. It is the Kingdom of Heaven here on earth. All of Heaven for all of eternity testifies of Jesus, the Worthy Lamb Who was slain before the foundations of the earth, of His holiness. So I say to you, let’s join with Heaven and do the same!

    Revelation 12:11 (TPT)
    “They conquered him completely 
    through the blood of the Lamb and the powerful word of his testimony. They triumphed because they did not love and cling to their own lives, even when faced with death.”

    I will be sharing in the next post or two, about the rest of my journey in Spain; but until then…

    Fuego de Dios esté sobre vosotros para testificar!!! (Fire of God be upon you to testify!!!)

    Katie, Pure Fire of Yahweh