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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!!!

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    Precipitating The Latter Rain 11/40

    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!

    It is time once again to examine our reasons to commit to The 40.  We must constantly refresh the reason behind the fast or we will be drawn away by the enticements of the world to what may seem better.

    Why have you committed to press in to The Lord through fasting?

    Whatever your reason may be for going into this fast, today, I want to give you another one. Fasting precipitates the Latter Rain.  The former generation experienced what they refer to as the Latter Rain and there have been many prophecies about the former and latter rain coming together in these days ahead using the passage Joel 2:23.  Though this is the passage used by so many about the coming releasing of The Spirit in a mighty way, few know the context in Joel during this time.  Another passage of scriptures you may know well is Joel 2:28-32.

    Joel 2:28-29 “And it shall come to pass afterward That I will pour out My Spirit on all flesh; Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, Your old men shall dream dreams,
    Your young men shall see visions. 29 And also on My menservants and  on My maidservants I will pour out My Spirit in those days.

    This may be one of the most referred to passages in the charismatic church especially since it is referenced by Peter in Acts 2:17-21 when the Holy Spirit comes upon the disciples in such a powerful way.  Again, it seems that no one knows the context of what is happening in the book of Joel preceding this.  We often overlook “minor” details that can lead us to a true revelation to how God wants to bring about what He has promised conditionally.  It is especially important to view the context because this passage starts with, me paraphrasing, these things will take place after something else happens.

    If you read the book of Joel, this is a time of tremendous devastation in the entire land of Judah.  An enormous plague of locusts had come and stripped the entire country of all vegetation.  Famine and drought as well as starvation and death of man and animals was taking place.  This was the worst possible moment in the people’s lives, and they needed a solution.  The prophet Joel came with a solution:

    Joel 1:13-14 Gird yourselves and lament, you priests; Wail, you who minister before the altar; Come, lie all night in sackcloth, You who minister to my God; For the grain offering and the drink offering Are withheld from the house of your God. 14 Consecrate a fast, Call a sacred assembly; Gather the elders And all the inhabitants of the land
    Into the house of the Lord your God, And cry out to the Lord.

    The solution for this crisis is humility, repentance, prayer, and fasting.  This plague was a result of the people’s constant refusal to turn to God and follow His ways.  Therefore, He allows the effects of their disobedience to come upon them.  Turning back to Him is the only way to change their situation, and fasting is a sign of a true repentance and humbling of the heart.  

    In case the people did not want to take the advice of a mere prophet of God, The Lord Himself gives the solution for their problem in the very next chapter:

    Joel 2:12-13 “Now, therefore,” says the Lord“Turn to Me with all your heart,
    With fasting, with weeping, and with mourning.”  13 So rend your heart, and not your garments; Return to the Lord your God, For He is gracious and merciful, Slow to anger, and of great kindness; And He relents from doing harm.

    Here, God calls for repentance, fasting, and prayer.  Fasting is a true evidence of a desire to change and come into line with God and His purposes instead of partnering with our own flesh.  This is what will cause the grace and mercy of Heaven to be made evident in our lives.  This is not just a call for certain group of people like the holy priests or pastors.  Vs. 15-17 tells us that it is for:

    • People
    • The Congregation
    • Elders
    • Children
    • Babies
    • Newlyweds
    • Priests

    No one is left out of this call to come to the Lord in repentance, fasting, and prayer.  No this is not a mandatory thing.  However, this is what is referring to in Vs. 28 after you come as an entire people in humility, repentance, fasting, and prayer then God will pour out His Spirit.  The apostles received The Holy Spirit after waiting and in unity in The Upper Room for 10 days.  We know they were praying together, but I believe they were fasting as well.  The outbreak of The Spirit at Azusa was a result of 10 days of fasting and praying together.

    Here we are, committed to The Lord and each other for The 40.  What can God do with our hearts that come to Him in humility, repentance, fasting, and prayer?

    Jesus, I ask that you will take this simple offering of my life, my commitment to you and use it for Your Kingdom.  I desire for The Great Outpouring of The Spirit that has so often been talked about.  I come to you in humility, repentance, fasting, and prayer right now.  Come and move in a mighty way that you may receive the glory that is due Your name!!!

    Practical – 

    • Read Joel 1-2
    • Ask Holy Spirit to reveal how you can partner with Him in your personal prayer time
    • Ask Him to reveal how to call your community into humility, repentance, fasting, and prayer
    • Be obedient to all that He speaks.

    Be blessed with the power to partner with Holy Spirit in precipitating the Latter Rain.  May this lifestyle propel you into the next level with Him!

    Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!

    Accomplish The “Impossible” 9/40

    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!

    Most of us have started The 40 with high expectations, however, now the real work begins.  The day to day living it out can be hard since we must constantly seek to overrule our flesh and give ourselves to the Lord.

    Now is the time to encourage ourselves in The Lord the benefits of keeping The 40 and continuing to walk with Holy Spirit in spite of what our bodies might be telling us.

    Prayer and fasting gives us the power to accomplish the “impossible”.  Of course, we know that “nothing shall be impossible with God”, yet we still live our lives with “impossible” situations which do not seem to respond to us.

    Jesus’ disciples had this same problem while He was on the mount being transfigured.  A man whose son is assaulted by demons asks for their help.  Though they try, they can do nothing about it.  When Jesus returns, He easily casts out the demons and heals the boy.  He does not seem to be impressed with His disciples’ efforts either.  The disciples come to Him and ask why they could not do the same.  This is His response:

    Matthew 17:20 “Because of your unbelief; for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you.

    We do not know what was going on in the disciples’ minds, but Jesus did not ever shy away from directly addressing what people said in their hearts.  I believe the disciples did not see a response and had blamed it on not having enough faith.  Jesus directly confronts this with The Kingdom Truth that the smallest amount of faith can do the mightiest things in His Kingdom.  They had let doubt creep in and this kept them from pressing in to see transformation take place.

    Then, Jesus says something else interesting that some translations completely leave out.

    Matthew 7:21 However, this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting.”

    What kind is Jesus talking about? 

    Some would say demons, but I think He is talking about the unbelief.  Unbelief is a pesky little problem that constantly assaults our media-driven culture.  If we cannot see or hear something happening, it is quite hard for us to believe.  We can never see the shifting in the heavens when our eyes are on worldly circumstances.

    If unbelief keeps us back from doing mighty work in The Kingdom, we should be quick to follow Jesus’ cure for it, prayer and fasting.  This dynamite duo is able to demolish and disintegrate the demonic unbelief that has built up in our lives.  This is how we say, “God I trust You to take care of the unseen as I partner with You in the physical.  I need you to do the “impossible” work of overcoming these spiritual obstacles in me while I do the possible work, with Your help, of prayer and fasting.”

    Jesus, help me to know that you have given me a measure of faith.  This faith has the power to overcome every seeming impossible thing in my life and those around me.  Help me to join with you in prayer and fasting that all unbelief within me will be destroyed and Your mountain-moving faith will be displayed for all to come and glorify You. 

    Practical – 

    • Ask Holy Spirit to reveal the things in your life and around you that you have labeled as impossible
    • Pray that every ounce of unbelief is removed from your life
    • Participate with Him in doing the impossible whatever He shows you to do

    Be blessed with the power to remove all doubt and do the impossible as you walk with God in obedience and humility.  May this propel you into new levels in The Kingdom!

    Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!

    The Great Reward 2/40

    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!

    Keep up the good work! You can do it! Day 2 has in the past been my hardest day to overcome. It is helpful during these first three days of struggling, to overcome our flesh’s addictions, that we keep our eyes on the prize.

    What is the prize?

    What is the reward?

    Hebrews 11:6 reminds us that God “is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.

    My own personal interpretation of this passage is that God will reward us as we seek Him even when we do not really want to. At this point in the fast, it is probably where we all are.

    What is the reward?

    The writer of Hebrews says later in Chapter 12 verse 2 that Jesus endured the cross because of the “...joy set before Him…

    What is this joy?

    What is it that will keep us going in the middle of this fast, but also the troubles of this life?

    2 Corinthians 4:16-18 talks of the momentary light afflictions working for us an exceeding and eternal weight of glory.  That is what I want!

    I desire the reward from The Father!

    I crave the joy in the middle of the troubling times!

    I am looking for the eternal weight of glory that I gain in the heavenlies as I give up a few things for a few days here on this earth. 

    You! You were the joy that caused Jesus to endure the cross. Your soul was worth it!

    Jesus! He is my reward! More of His presence! More communion with Him! Deeper relationship and knowing of The Creator of The Universe as my friend!

    Souls! Family, friends, neighbors, and nations is what I am claiming for my heavenly inheritance and eternal reward!

    Jesus, I thank You that You are my reward! I ask for an increasing eternal reward of family, friends, neighbors, and nations for You and Your Kingdom!!!

    Practical – Write down the rewards you are looking for and review them when your soul needs to remember why you are fasting.

    • What reward do you hope to gain from this fast?
    • What are you claiming as your eternal inheritance?

    Be blessed with the great reward from heaven as you are propelled into the next level!!!

    Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!

    Completely Clean

    Daily Encouragement –

    What have you done to get to where you are in life? Are you successful? Have you overcome every obstacle? Are you self-sufficient? 

    I am Yahweh, Creator of Heaven and earth!!! I am all-sufficient and the provider of all things!!! No matter what you may have done or accomplished in this life, you need Me and My help! You have failed and done wrong in some area that you can never erase. You may have tried to hide or balance out the negative with positive, but you will never be able to take away what has happened. 

    Come to Me! I have provided the perfect sacrifice that all the wrong, malicious, evil things done by you are able to be taken away and completely cleansed! You do not need to hide what is completely clean!

    Come to Me! Trust in Jesus’ perfect sacrifice to cleanse, restore, and make you new! This is why Jesus came and died so that you could come to Me, exactly the way you are, and be made pure and holy! I love you My child!!!

    Isaiah 53:4-6 “Surely He has borne our griefs And carried our sorrows;
    Yet we esteemed Him stricken, Smitten by God, and afflicted.
    But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed. 
    All we like sheep have gone astray; We have turned, every one, to his own way; And the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.”

    Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!

    My Way

    Daily Encouragement –

    Do you feel like you are fighting an uphill battle? Do you always seem to go against the grain and rub people the wrong way? Do you have seemingly unnecessary struggles and difficulties in daily life? 

    I am The Almighty God!!! Come to Me and walk in the way I have prepared for you! My way is the only way of true peace, life, and strength. Any other way will be a struggle because you are trying to make your own way. 

    My way is not the easiest, but it is the right way. I have gone before you in the way and truly walk beside you to help in all things. I will never leave you alone, but I am here to strengthen and guide you in The Way! 

    I have called you by name to walk into My Kingdom together with Me. Why would you struggle and fight just to go your own way and do your own thing? I love you My child!!!

    Isaiah 45:2-3 ‘I will go before you And make the crooked places straight; I will break in pieces the gates of bronze And cut the bars of iron. 
    I will give you the treasures of darkness And hidden riches of secret places, That you may know that I [am] the Lord, Who call you by your name,

    Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!

    Wandering? Forgotten? Chosen!

    Daily Encouragement – 

    Do you ever feel like you are wandering aimlessly through this life? Do you know the purpose why you are here and what you are supposed to do? Are you able to do it? Do you feel like you have no direction and no strength to move even if you knew which way you were supposed to go? 

    I have chosen you!!! I am The First and The Last, and I have chosen to help you and for you to come close and know Me! I call you to come near and will never cast you aside. 

    I will forever strengthen and uphold you as much as you will allow! The closer you come to Me the more I am able to strengthen, encourage, and reveal the purpose and direction I have for you. Come close to Me and receive all you will ever need! 

    Need a little more? Come a little closer and see the abundance of all I have to pour out upon you!!! I love you My child!!!

    Isaiah 41:9-10 “You whom I have taken from the ends of the earth, And called from its farthest regions, And said to you, ‘You are My servant, I have chosen you and have not cast you away; Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.’

    Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!