Tag Archives: Witness

Raising Up Martyrs

For the past few days I have been pondering and dwelling on a thing with the Lord. I find myself going back to this past Sunday when I was teaching the youth at our church. For months now, the Lord has been leading me to teach about the Harvest. I taught out of John 4 for a few months through the end of last year and into the new year; followed by teaching out of the end of Matthew 9:27-38 and on into Matthew 10.

I fully expected to teach from Matthew 10:7-8, And as you go, preach this message: ‘Heaven’s Kingdom realm is accessible (at hand), close enough to touch.’ You must continually bring healing to lepers and to those who are sick, and make it your habit to break off the demonic presence from people, and raise the dead back to life. Freely you have received the power of the Kingdom, so freely release it to others.However, He chose to lead it in a completely different direction and not even really talk about Matthew 10 in the way I thought. He led the conversation into teaching about martyrdom to youth under the age of fourteen.

While this isn’t your typical idea of what a Sunday morning teaching and discipleship for youth would look like; He planted seeds of holy pursuit, zealous passion, and awakened compassion. I shared the stories of modern-day martyrs, Jim Elliot, along with his four friends while attempting to reach the Huaorani tribe in Ecuador; and this past year, John Chau, who gave up his life to reach the highly isolated tribe on North Sentinel Island.

All-consuming love for Jesus and to bring Him the reward of His suffering has marked those who have given up everything, including their very lives, to go to the ends of the earth for love. God is awakening His compassion unto action in this generation. This very thing is what so moved Jesus’ heart for the lost in His day.

Matthew 9:35-38 (TPT)
“Jesus walked throughout the region with the joyful message of God’s Kingdom realm. He taught in their meeting houses, and wherever He went He demonstrated God’s power by healing every kind of disease and illness. When He saw the vast crowds of people, Jesus’ heart was deeply moved with compassion, because they seemed weary and helpless, like wandering sheep without a shepherd. He turned to His disciples and said, ‘THE HARVEST IS HUGE AND RIPE! But there are not enough harvesters to bring it all in. AS YOU GO, PLEAD with the Owner of the Harvest to THRUST out many more reapers to harvest His grain!'”

When Jesus saw the crowds of people, compassion overtook Him and He was gripped by it because when He looked upon them, He saw a lost, hurting, broken, abandoned, addicted, wandering, worn, helpless, harassed, distressed, shepherd-less, scattered people, condemned to an eternity of separation and torment in hell. The literal translation of their state is as if they had been flayed, skinned alive, and mangled. He saw their great need of a Deliverer and Savior.

I believe that perhaps He not only saw the crowds that were before Him, but also caught a glimpse or vision of the vast multitudes that would come who resembled the same state. Perhaps upon seeing this, He thought back on God’s desire to co-labor with His creation to carry out His will in the earth. For it is when seeing this reality that He turned to His disciples and presented the problem.
The harvest is huge and ripe, where are they who would partner with Me in gathering it in?
No sooner did He present the problem did He provide the solution. As you go, plead with the Owner of the Harvest to thrust out many more reapers to harvest His grain!” He then commissioned His disciples to GO, and as they went, to PLEAD that He would THRUST out more laborers.

In other words, “I am sending (EKBALLO-ing) you to be the answer; and I command you to plead (BEG) Me to hurl (EKBALLO) forth more laborers into the Harvest as you go!”

This is His divine commissioning — He expects and commands us to go!

Upon this command we see going into Matthew 10, that He imparted to them authority and power to do as He had done. We are then brought back to Matthew 10:7-8 as stated above. The disciples had been marked by a zeal that had consumed them. When you have become so marked and consumed by this holy passion and fire, you become unstoppable; for the Unstoppable One dwells within you. This very thing is what led the apostles to say to the leaders in their day who told them to stop sharing about Jesus, “We cannot help but to speak what we have seen and known to be true!” (Acts 4:18-20

Thinking on this, I asked Holy Spirit why He directed the teaching to martyrdom and what it means for the Body of Christ. He replied,

“I did it because it is time to level up! It is time to stop spoon-feeding this generation of believers with a comfortable gospel!

IT IS TIME TO GO ALL IN! YOU ARE EITHER ALL IN OR NOT IN AT ALL!

There is no age-requirement to My command and call! There is only one requirement: a simple person being simply obedient! If you train up a child in the way they should go, when they are older, they will not depart from it! This generation and the ones to come possess a passion and tenacity that I placed within them to scale the heights, undaunted, fearless, and unrelenting.

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Photo: dannynyquist

Are you willing to lay down your life for My Kingdom to be advanced and established in the earth? Are you willing to lay down your life for souls?Do not neglect to train and equip them in the FULL Gospel of Truth; for some of them will indeed lay down their very lives for My name’s sake and the sake of souls, some even at a young age. They MUST be properly trained and prepared. This can only be done by example. I prepared and equipped My disciples by setting the example. I laid down My very life for the sake of the world.

Indeed, some of you will. But do not continue until you count the cost. I have come to set you on fire that others will come and watch you burn. Like a wildfire, it will be caught and spread across boundary lines, state lines, water lines, and dividing lines.  You must warn them to step up and step out; for I am coming! Sooner than they think! But not until every tribe, every tongue, and every nation has been given the opportunity to come to Me! This is only done through your obedience and the faithful obedience of My Bride.”

I dwelled deeply on this word last night and He reminded me of Acts 1:8, the last thing Jesus said to His apostles before He ascended into Heaven.

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

The word for “power” is “dunamis“, which is where we get the word, “dynamite“. The word for “messengers” or “witnesses” is “martus“, which is the word, “martyr“. It is as if He was saying, “Holy Spirit is coming and will baptize you and fill you with an explosive power that will catapult you to be martyrs for My Kingdom to the ends of the earth!”

I am reminded of the week after I returned from The Send. I had received such a fresh baptism of fire and a fresh commission to Go! Two days into the week, I overheard my three-year old son singing, “I will preach the Gospel, die and be forgotten, as long as You get the glory!” On another occasion I heard him singing, “I will love You with my ‘Yes’ and with my obedience, Jesus!”, and “It’s my joy to lose my life and find it in Jesus Christ.”

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Azariah in tears, being overwhelmed by Holy Spirit in prayer.

I wept then as I do now; and not for the reason that many would think. I am filled with abounding joy and am proud of my son that even though he is young, his heart is stirring to yearn for Jesus and to go to any length to love Him and partner with Him in His grand plan of salvation and setting the earth on fire. That he desires to carry out his own destiny and purpose created for him from before the foundations of the earth were laid.

This is what we are to do. We are to first become martyrs. Then we are to raise up and train others to become martyrs. We are all called to be martyrs for Jesus. Some of us will laid down our very lives for this cause for He is worthy; however, all of us are called to be faithful witnesses to what we have seen and known to be true. Jesus is the One Who is Faithful and True. 

The Spirit of Prophecy is the testimony of Jesus. When we testify, we prophesy!

My prayer is this:
God, awaken us all to Your call! Awaken us to our purpose in the earth: to proclaim, train, and send. Father, baptize us in a holy compassion for the lost that would so grip us as it did You; and that we would stop at nothing to go to the ends of the earth for love! May we lay down our very lives for the lost to know You. Come what may, we will go with You! Here we are God! Send us! The wisdom of God is foolish in the eyes of the world; but still we go with You! May we partner with You and be fire starters that set nations ablaze for Your glory; and may we train up martyrs for Your Kingdom! May we never relent in this great ascent!

“He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose.”
-Jim Elliot

Katie, Pure Fire of Yahweh

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THE SEND: EKBALLO

I have been left reeling in a Holy Spirit daze after all that took place at The Send in Florida this past Saturday. I have tried to reflect upon all that transpired and yet, I still find myself without words. I have attempted to formulate into words what my eyes have seen and my ears have heard, and I find no words to truly describe the impact that has shaken The Church and the nations awake. I have simply found myself in a perpetual state of weeping before the Lord and the burning desire of the nations being continually kindled in my heart.

I have shared over the past few years of the coming wave that the Lord has been revealing to me and I truly believe The Send was enacted and that the war on inaction was declared that day. The Presence of God so heavily saturated the stadium that the moment I set foot on the field, my heart burst at the sight I beheld. Within moments of finding our place, the weightiness of His nearness to us was more than I could bear and I found myself crumpled on the turf with my face between my knees weeping and crying out, “HOLY!” I could not help but weep all throughout the day.

As the day progressed, I witnesses the marking point in the history of man as around 80,000 laid-down lovers of Jesus said ‘YES!’ to The One whom their heart beheld. The tearing down of every stronghold, care, and weight that so easily entangles was stripped bare of this arising army. A great committal before the Lord took place with the commissioning of Burning Ones into the universities, schools, neighborhoods, families and orphans, and the nations; with prayer and intentional fasting. A supernatural strengthening and refreshing came upon us as the Floodgates of Heaven were opened and rain began to fall upon a fiery, sun-parched and worn army pressing on towards the prize of Jesus Christ being made famous to the ends of the earth. Miraculous healings were released in the thousands as signs and wonders broke out. A fresh gust of Holy Spirit and Fire was released unto commissioning, empowering, and mantling.

Truly, the words, visions, and dreams He has given me were made evident that day and have met their releasing. The thankfulness and honor I feel that God would allow me a glimpse of what He has been preparing to shake the earth and set it on fire AND to participate in it in person has left me overwhelmed and in awe of Him.

This morning in prayer as I thought on these things, I heard Him say:

“A great and mighty war has been waged and My Mighty Army has come forth to carry out My battle plans in the earth. The great dismantling has begun! You will see that as My Army charges forth, they will cast down every idol, and detestable act, and shrine to self; exposing bare the deep and hidden things.

Soon, all the world will see the destruction that trails behind them as they plunder and ransack every enemy stronghold!

FOR EVERYWHERE THEY GO, EVERY IDOL WILL FALL AS THEY CARRY RIGHTEOUSNESS AND JUSTICE IN THEIR WINGS.

Their eyes glisten with the view of Eden ahead.

THEY WILL NOT STOP! THEY WILL BACK DOWN! THEY WILL NOT RELENT!

My Fire is their portion and their power! A great transformation will come forth in a moment when it would seem that all is lost. When it would seem that great darkness remains, a bright light will shine forth and extinguish all darkness.

Light and Life will burst forth in a  great and mighty procession.”

Watching the replay of The Send as I write this, I am overcome with a song of Holy Spirit burning in my heart,

There’s a ‘YES!’ burning in our hearts and it propels us to GO! It propels us to GO!
There’s a Love burning in our hearts, and it compels us to GO! It compels us to GO!

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Photo: Samuel Rodriguez

My prayer today is that whatever I have been given from the Lord during my time at The Send, that He would impart to you that you may:
-DECLARE WAR ON INACTION
-ADOPT A MISSION FIELD:
whether in reaching your Neighborhoods for Jesus.
Reaching the Universities.
Reaching the Schools.
Moving in the Spirit of Adoption by reaching Families unto Restoration and to see Orphans put into Families.
Adopting a City, Region, or Nation and going forth declaring that Love is on the Way!!!

To put steps into adopting your mission field, I have included below two ways you can take action and partner with us to set the world on Fire for Jesus and to carry forth HIS MISSION in the earth!!!

THE SEND: Sign up for your mission field, receive follow up and aid in finding the best avenue of taking action.

FIND MY MISSION: A missions search platform that helps match you to mission experiences around the world based on your passion and skillset. They are dedicated to seeing every barrier removed between you and the mission God has called you to.

Katie, Pure Fire of Yahweh

Expect the Unexpected (Southeast Asia)

Headhunter warriors

Headhunter warriors give their lives to Jesus!!!

Often, our expectations, true or false, will determine our reality. All of us have expectations of the way things will be especially when outside of our routine. Often, I will tell my wife to expect the unexpected; but today, God decided to remind me of this and shatter some of my false expectations.

Many things have already happened on this trip that were better than I had expected. We were told there would be no AC and I did not expect hot water… Hence the way I started out the last post (I just did not know how to work it right). Surprisingly, we have both. I am thankful for them, but God knew they were not necessary for me.

Another thing I did not expect was the opportunity to try some new foods. Both dog and bat were served at a service I went to. Everything was so spicy that through the sweating, tears, and raging fire in my mouth, I could not taste much. I have decided that I do not like bat though because there are way too many bones and not enough meat.  Somehow, I survived.

But really, none of that really matters. What would take place after this service is beyond what I ever expected. Originally, the team I am with had prepared the way by speaking to the pastors and having them prepare homes to visit where the lost would get saved.  The Pastor I was with was not there so he did not receive these instructions. Instead, he decided for us to go out witnessing on the street. When I found this out, I immediately began praying for strength and ability. Those of you who know me could easily surmise I do not have the gift of evangelism, and mass evangelism in public is rather intimidating to me.  I had to give the situation to God and ask Him to give me grace to do something that was entirely outside my comfort zone and expectations.  I am sure I will have to do the same thing tomorrow.

All the way from the service to the first place we would go out, I was praying silently and feverishly. God gave me grace in an excited couple that gathered the people into groups and then had me come over and share. This made it a little easier, but not really more comfortable.  The picture above was the first group they had me come share with.  The intimidation factor is way up there when four people in full headhunting warrior dress are standing there with swords and skulls hanging from their waists looking at you.  God gave me the grace to go all in and all of those red warriors and a few other people around got saved.  We ended up sharing for around an hour and 19 people, that I know of, prayed to become born again.  This was far more than I expected as uncomfortable as I was going in. I praise God for His grace, strength, and boldness to share.

So, what about you? What expectations do you have that need to be broken down? The enemy will always try to put false expectations on you to hold you back from the fullness that God has. What comforts do you need to release? What fears need to be broken? What expectations need to change to come into line with what God wants? Only He can change your wrong mindsets. But, you have to be willing to step out of the boat!!! If I had said no for any reason, I would not have seen these souls enter the Kingdom. If Peter had said no, he never would have gotten out of the boat. Yes, you may fall, but Jesus will be right there with you to save you and put you back on your feet.  

I invite you to ask God right now, to change your expectations to expect what was once unexpected to you. My God “is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that I ask for hope for or imagine through His power working in me.” I pray that you allow that same power to work through you as you follow and obey Him!!!

Matthew 14:28-31 And Peter answered Him and said, “Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water.” So He said, “Come.” And when Peter had come down out of the boat, he walked on the water to go to Jesus. But when he saw that the wind was boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink he cried out, saying, “Lord, save me!” And immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and caught him, and said to him, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?” 

Jeremiah, Man in Fire!!!

Wholeness and Purpose

Daily Encouragement – 

Are you feeling forgotten, worn out, and used up? Do you feel all alone trying to make your way in this world? Does your life lack true purpose?

I am Your Maker, Savior, and Redeemer!!! I have made you for great purpose and destiny, and you will come to know these things as you come to know Me. I love you and am always with you no matter how you may be feeling. 

I have chosen you and designed you to be healed, whole and complete in Me. You are to be a witness of all the blessings, freedom, and life I continually pour out upon you. I desire to come closer to you than ever before! 

Come to Me and bring Me your brokenness and uncertainty. I will come to you and bring the wholeness and purpose that you desperately need. Come close and let Me abundantly give from the storehouses of true riches for you are My child and I love you!!!

Isaiah 43:10-12 You are My witnesses,” says the Lord, “And My servant whom I have chosen, That you may know and believe Me, And understand that I am He. Before Me there was no God formed, Nor shall there be after Me. 
11 I, even I, am the Lord, And besides Me there is no savior. 
12 I have declared and saved, I have proclaimed, And there was no foreign god among you; Therefore you are My witnesses,” Says the Lord, “that I am God.

Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!

Greater Than Jesus?

Daily Encouragement Dec 5 –

Are you greater than I am? Are you truly following Me? Are you walking as I walked? 

I was sent into the world to bear witness of The Father, The Truth. I never prayed to be taken out of the world or moved somewhere else. This world is hard and fear, son, darkness, and death are around every corner. But do not fear! I am with you! 

I never prayed for Myself or My own to be taken out of the horrible unpleasant situations we were in. Where I was, was where I was sent! That is where I was sent to serve. 

When you pray to be taken out of the darkness instead of shining My light where you are, you are saying you are more important and greater than I Myself did. Pray for strength to shine brightly and bear witness of the Truth for I am always with you no matter where you are!!! I love you My child!!!

John 17:15-19  I do not ask You to take them out of the world, but that You keep them and protect them from the evil one. 16 They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. 17 Sanctify them in the truth [set them apart for Your purposes, make them holy]; Your word is truth. 18 Just as You commissioned and sent Me into the world, I also have commissioned and sent them (believers) into the world. 19 For their sake [e]I sanctify Myself [to do Your will], so that they also may be sanctified [set apart, dedicated, made holy] in [Your] truth.

Will You Come?

Daily Encouragement – 

Come to Me! Come to Me! Come to Me, over and over again! Come to Me that you may receive the Life I have for you. The closer you come, the more life you will receive. 

Do you know what would happen if you were to come close and stay with Me never looking to the ways of the world or being pulled away by the cares of this life? Doing this, you would receive True Life and come to know the specific work I have designed you to accomplish. 

You must know and do the work I have for you. So many are counting on you to bring witness of who I am. As you step into your destiny, you are being the witness I have called you to, and all of heaven is backing you. 

All of this can only come about as you willingly come to Me and receive the life I have for you. I love you My Child! Come to Me!

John 5:39 But you are not willing to come to Me that you may have life.

John 5:36 the works which the Father has given Me to finish—the very works that I do—bear witness of Me, that the Father has sent Me.

Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!

Worship and Sacrifice

Simple Discipleship

This is the third week is the Simple Discipleship series.  Here are the first two messages in this series.

  1. Being a Leader/Disicple
  2. Intimacy/Love of God

Here is the topic of study for next week:

Worship and Sacrifice

  • My notes can be found here: Simple Discipleship Week 3
  • Here is the Audio Teaching from Feb 17, 2016: http://lwcburleson.sermon.net/main/main/20609931

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As we begin learning about Worship and Sacrifice, we must first ask ourselves,

What is Worship?  

What is Sacrifice?

If we do not have a proper understanding of these things, then as we discuss them, we will never come to a true understanding.  My prayer is that as we investigate the scriptures, that we will understand even more the meaning of these and how we can apply them to our lives.

Worship – Honoring and lifting high another as higher than yourself out of a heart of love in response to God’s word, act, or nature.

Sacrifice – Giving up completely something that is greatly important to you for the benefit of another because you love them.

Here, I am talking specifically of the worshiping God, but we worship and lift high so many things that are undeserving.  Food, sleep, money, fashion, entertainment, sports, people, can all be worshiped in spite of not being worth it.  In this one statement, you may be feeling judged and your toes may feel stepped on, but this is the reality of the matter in my life as well as the lives of so many others.

We have a struggle in the morning when our alarms go off whether we will rise and spend time with the Lord worshiping Him or worship the god of sleep that is so seductive especially when it comes time to make the decision.  I could go on and on about each one of these, but every time we choose these things over obedience to God and love for Him, we are worshiping them and lifting them high as the important things in our lives.

Worship

In 2 Chronicles 21, we come to learn that we worship God when we accept His word and are obedient without doubting or questioning what He says.  Jehosophat had no direct command of God to put His worshipers on the front lines.  They did it out of an act of obedience and thus worshiped God by being obedient and trusting in the word of God.

In Genesis 22, Abraham is called to sacrifice his son that God had just revealed was the son of promise.  Abraham trusted God in such a way that as they went to the mountain in Vs. 5 Abraham says we go to worship.  Abraham’s heart of sacrifice is a true act of worship to God.  He was willing to give whatever God asked in obedience out of his great love for Him.

In John 4,

What Jesus mean to worship God in Spirit and truth?

  • God wants a constant communion with you in the day to day.  He does not want you to worship Him in a church or at your house only, but in the Spirit everywhere you go in every situation that you are in.
  • God wants you to be honest with Him.  You cannot fool God.  He sees the thoughts and intentions of your heart.  If you are giving Him something small and seemingly mediocre out of a good heart, it is greater worship than giving the very most you have out of a wrong heart. (1 Cor 13:3)

In Malachi 1, God desires our very best.  If we bring God half-hearted worship out of duty, these things are not pure and holy and actually dishonor and disrespect God.  He would rather no one worship than to have duty-filled worship out of grudging hearts.  He wants pure and holy worship that is a true witness to who He is.  This only comes when we are giving God our best out of a willing and loving heart.

In 2 Samuel 24, David reveals that God is blessed by our sacrifice more than he is blessed by our excess.  We see this concept over and over throughout the Bible that when we give God something valuable to us, that is true worship.  Those giving because they have extra does not impress God.  Jesus states this in a different way when talking of the widow in Mark 12:41-44. God desires our pure and holy sacrifice so He can bless us with better than our very best!!!

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Finally, in Luke 7, a “sinner” probably a prostitute comes in to the middle of the pastors and elders of their day.  She humbles herself completely to the judgmental and critical thoughts and stares and worships Jesus.  This “sinner”  sacrificed more and gave more in worship than anyone else around.  Because of her sacrifice and true heart of worship, her sins are forgiven, and she is saved.  She was forgiven much and so loved much.  The fact that she loved much caused her to sacrifice her most valuable possession and her pride as an act of worship to Jesus.

Does you love cause you to sacrifice your pride and valuables in worship to the Lord? 

Nothing I have spoken is out of judgment or condemnation, but Holy Spirit has even convicted me in studying these things.  Our love for God will always lead us to a true worship which is displayed in what we are willing to sacrifice for our True Love.

Ask Holy Spirit these questions and be obedient in what He is speaking:

Are you giving your very best to God?  This is true worship.

What is God calling you to sacrifice to love Him and worship Him in a deeper way?

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May you be blessed with knowing more of the Love of God than ever before, and may you receive the fullness of the blessing that comes through true worship and sacrifice.

Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!