Tuesday, May 26, 2009

It takes courage to ask for help

Steven Sebyala mentioned this scripture last week

9 Afterward the disciples asked Jesus privately, “Why couldn’t we cast out that demon?”

Jesus disciples asked him a direct question. They wanted to know why they had failed, and what they should learn. I like their direct attempt to get their issues fixed, and to learn. They asked a humble, straightforward question. They didn't dodge the issues, make excuses, or pretent they knew. They wanted to be critiqued and to learn how they could improve themselves.

Paul said that he looks for leaders who are "wise as serpents, and innocent as doves", whcih seems like something these disciples may have been modeling. They were wise enough to ask for help when they needed it, and ask the simplest questions possible.

I want to be like that

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

coming this weekend

This weekend we have the privilege of hosting Steven Sebyala of Africa Harvest Mission. 

I met Steven a number of years ago at Ron Johnson's church in Hampton Virginia. I was amazed to hear about the 300 churches he planted in Africa, and about his vision as an evangelist to reach a billion African's for Christ by the year 2045! I am such an amateur leader compared to a modern day apostle like this one.

Pastor Steven will be here for all services this weekend. He will also be teaching at my Catalyst meeting Tuesday at noon will also feature Steven teaching on leadership. I'd love to have you with us if you are interested. Email Lorrie or call the office of you plan to be part of it.

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Jason Fitch is ordained!

Last night at Ministries Summit, I got to lay hands on Jason Fitch as he was ordained to the ministry.

So many things raced through my brain.

Like when we fasted and prayed for his salvation. And how serious he was when he gave his heart to Jesus.  He never seemed to look back, or give God less than his whole self. For example, when  I talked to him about getting trained for the ministry, he wanted a great education, not a get-by solution.

I love that I never have to wonder if he is sugar-coating the truth. Or wonder if he will keep his word. Or persuade him to grow by reading, learning, or getting counsel. I am never discouraged about what he is now, because I know he is on his way to becomin so much more.

I love that I never had to wonder if his marriage would make it, or if he would quit when the going got tough. I never wondered if he would take care of his health, physical or spiritual.

As I prayed over him last night, I got a vision of him standing in Tulsa. (He was bigger than life, as if he was standing on a giant map of the United States). He arms were stretched wide, and the nation was pressing in to come to him and receive from the Spirit of God upon Him. People who could not get close enough, were straining to hear whatever he said, and were doing what he suggested they do. His outstretched arms were like a funnel, drawing people into eternal life. Millions were pressing in. I felt such God-power coming from him and from Sara.

I feel deeply privileged to have been part of this "making-of-a-man-of-God". 

God showed me a lot more, which I hope to write in future blogs

Saturday, May 02, 2009

Learning how to monitor change

This week at Freedom Valley we take an important step on our jouney to See Change As Opportunity.

The step? We are learning what Jesus taught about how to Monitor Change!

Jesus taught his disciples about how to watch change as it happens and set themselves to ride the wave instead of being crushed by it. Here are some of his insights:

Get Shock Absorbers.
Jesus made it very clear that even good change (like believing in Him) should not cause us to expect like to be smooth. In fact, he said he did NOT come to bring peace but a sword. We get confused when we think "life should be less hard", or that "if we do the right things, people should agree with us." 

Life is just not like that, and it is more effective to prepare for tough times than to believe times should not be tough.

Grow a discerner
Learning to discern where you are at in life is not much harder than discerning the weather, yet most of us trudge through season after season without discerning what really matters, where we are heading, or what to do to prepare for the future. Jesus said: "you know how to discern the weather. Know how to discern the times"

Know the law of the trail.
If you are on a path in life, you WILL end up where the path leads you, right? Paths lead to certain conclusions, everytime, becasue that is what paths are for. Yet some of us are marching along witout thinking about the outcome of the particular path we are on. Jesus said, for example, that when we are on the way to court, we should think clearly about what the outcomes could be and work hard to make peace before we get to an outcome we don't like.