Monday, October 24, 2016

Dead End Journeys

One morning last week, I left my motel room to take a morning walk before I drove on to my next ministry assignment. As I walked up a main street, I passed a strange little side street with an “End” sign at the edge of the pavement. The street was only about 10 feet long. It looked like a joke some construction worker had erected, but it was real.  As I stopped and looked on in amusement the Lord began to speak to me.

There are many things being announced as major events in our culture, but they are nothing more than side street diversions leading to a dead end of wasted time, energy and emotion. Keep your feet on the main road of God’s will and don’t be drawn into the side streets. God is about to make known things not found on the curious side streets of diversion.  If you find your life diverted get back on the main road and keep walking. Dead end journeys are not part of your assignment or your calling.

“You will make known to me the path of life.” Psalm 16:11

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Importation and Impartation

Yesterday, I drove by a series of large shipping docks that lined a deep-water port on the Columbia River near Longview, Washington. Shipments from all over the world had made their way to these docks to be unloaded by Longshoreman and sent to various destinations across the nation. Many of these items arrived as the result of an order placed by an import agent who brought goods into the United States from a distant nation.

Later in the morning, I was in the middle of a daylong teaching session at the Northwest School of Supernatural Ministry in Rainer, Oregon. I was working through my prepared material on Prophetic Alignment. Then the Lord dropped in my heart the unexpected words, “Importation precedes Impartation”. Those words were not part of my original notes. I was experiencing one of those moments when God adds to what I had originally prepared because He wants to say something I had not planned. Later, during the question and answer session with the students, someone asked me to unpack that phrase.

The Church is in the importation business. We are agents for the goods and services of Heaven. We import and release Heaven on Earth through impartation according to the level of our faith. Those impartations can come through a declaration, prayer, blessing or any act of love. Each of these impartations is empowered by the Spirit according to specific shipping and delivery orders.

God wants to bring a shipment of supernatural goods and services to your community through the agency of your faith. He is looking for spiritual import agents who will place impossible-sounding orders for shipments of glory and goodness that have the potential to radically shift the environment at the destination of their delivery. It is time to set up your import and impart business. God is ready to deliver the goods if you will place the order.

Saturday, October 22, 2016

It's Time to Run!

A quote from a book came to my mind today.

“Every morning in Africa, a gazelle wakes up, it knows it must outrun the fastest lion or it will be killed. Every morning in Africa, a lion wakes up. It knows it must run faster than the slowest gazelle, or it will starve. It doesn't matter whether you're the lion or a gazelle-when the sun comes up, you'd better be running.” (Christopher McDougall – Born to Run)

You and I also wake up each day with the need to run. Some things require that we run away from them like Joseph when he ran away from Potiphar’s wife. At other times we run toward a conflict like David when he ran toward Goliath. The decision of what direction to run will determine your spiritual survival. Joseph’s run preserved his integrity. David’s run defined his destiny. Both runs were significant in their outcomes.

Today you will be offered choices and each will require you to run. Run wisely. So much depends on the direction you choose to run.

“Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us.” Hebrews 12:1

Friday, October 21, 2016

A Bouquet of God's Presence

On a recent ministry trip, I was on the road for almost a week. My schedule had me ministering in several locations. Between two of the meetings, I had one night on the road to myself, so I reserved a room in a well-known national motel chain. Driving onto the property I was happy I had selected the motel. The property and lobby appeared well-maintained. Several of the lobby staff were standing behind the front counter when I entered. Immediately, I noticed the atmosphere was depressed. The faces of the employees reflected a dark and somber expression. I had arrived early hoping my room was ready, but was told to return in an hour. I used that time to drive around town.

The town was celebrating Halloween. Not in a normal way, but in an over-the-top fashion. Witches, headless scarecrows with hatchets, bloodied goblins and all kinds of dark images literally filled every block of the town. It was a Chamber of Commerce event gone wild. In the stores spiders and spider webs were everywhere. It was like something had descended over the town and covered it. I was waiting for Stephen King to walk by and tell me this was the backdrop for his latest book of horror.

Finally, I stopped at a supermarket to grab some snacks. As I walked by the floral section of the store, the Lord said, “Buy a bouquet”. I knew immediately what I was to do. I bought a bouquet of white roses in a vase and returned to the hotel to check-in. A woman, who I would later learn was the off-duty manager, entered the lobby door with me. One of the counter clerks I had seen before met us at the counter. The manager thought I was a delivery person and asked, “Well, who are those for?” I said, “They are for you and your lobby staff.” Immediately, the entire atmosphere of the lobby made a shift. The stagnant air of depression was replaced by a wind of the Spirit. Both women became bubbly and talkative. It was like I was a missing relative being welcomed home after a long absence.  All of a sudden the staff were working in the best place ever.

I knew buying the bouquet was a prophetic act that carried an assignment. At the time of the purchase, I did not know the bouquet would shift the spiritual environment of a hotel lobby. Many times we can pass up these nudges of the Spirit to do something simple and miss seeing God work in a profound way.

After I checked in, I went up to my room. As soon as I dropped my bags on the floor, I prayed a familiar prayer of protection and revelation I always pray when I enter any unfamiliar accommodation while on the road. I sensed the peace that was released in the lobby when the bouquet delivered was waiting to greet me in my room. The fragrance of a spiritual bouquet of God’s presence had filled the room. I knew God had accomplished His purpose for my unscheduled visit to this out-of-the-way little town. I slept long and deep that night like someone lying on a bed of white rose pedals.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

On Nothing Less

Maybe the hidden blessing at the end of this election cycle will be the sound of the death rattle of false hope. That sound will come with the last exhale of a deception that has been whispered into the ear of the Church hoping we would continue to believe that the promises made by a political spirit are the hope of our nation.

The ear of Jesus Christ was tuned only to the voice of the Father as He walked among the divisive agendas of authoritative Rome, obstinate Jewish religious leaders and the zealots present in His own group of disciples. Those who followed in the example of Jesus tuned out the desperate rhetoric of their culture not allowing its angst to direct their steps. As a result of that freedom, they turned the world upside down.

This is a moment of great hope and expectation for the people of God. We will experience the full impact of this opportunity if we are able to discern the sound of His voice in the midst of the increasing volume of despair and desperation that comes when false hope is being exposed.

In the last few months, I have found myself singing the lyrics to a hymn from my childhood, “My hope is built on nothing less than Jesus' blood and righteousness. I dare not trust the sweetest frame, but wholly lean on Jesus’ name.” (Lyrics from the hymn, The Solid Rock.)