Leadership – Servant Kingship!

Leadership Process – Servant Kingship! 1 Cor 4 : 8 Now ye are full, now ye are rich, ye have reigned as kings without us: and I would to God ye did reign, that we also might reign with you. 9 For I think that God hath set forth us the apostles last, as it […]

Leadership Process – Servant Kingship!

servant-king

1 Cor 4 : 8 Now ye are full, now ye are rich, ye have reigned as kings without us: and I would to God ye did reign, that we also might reign with you.

9 For I think that God hath set forth us the apostles last, as it were appointed to death: for we are made a spectacle unto the world, and to angels, and to men.

How life changes as we grow up. We first come to Jesus, and the whole world lights up. The sun seems brighter, the flowers more beautiful, the sky clear, and we simply want to love the whole world. Jesus loves me, this I know, for the Bible tells me so. He loves me, He loves me, He loves me!

Servant Leadership

May this love ever burn in our hearts! May this love compel us to action!

Yet, quickly, we also discover, there is great evil in the world. Fallen men, empowered by their sin nature, and devils do abominable things! Babies killed, abused, wars, carnage, greedy people raping others, the land, for their own selfish carnal desires to be met.

Then, someone teaches us that we have authority over the devil! That we have something to say in this world! We can exercise God’s authority in the earth, because we have read:

Rev 1:5 And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood,

6 And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.

royalty

Re 5:10 And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth.

Indeed, we are kings before Him! Priests of the most High God! Offering acceptable sacrifices of prayer, praise, worship, and service, through Jesus shed blood!

1Pe 2:9 But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:

royal

We have been given authority over the works of darkness, positionally, and we begin to walk it out!

Luke 10: 19 Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you.

20 Notwithstanding in this rejoice not, that the spirits are subject unto you; but rather rejoice, because your names are written in heaven.

We are those who hear His voice, and we get filled with the Holy Spirit, and experience His power in our lives. Signs and wonders start to happen, daily in our life!

Mark 16: 17 And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;

18 They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.

We pray, and heaven opens, and we see visions, experience living revelation from a very living God.

Tim-Keller-Quote-Miracles-of-Jesus

Act 2:17 And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams:

18 And on my servants and on my handmaidens I will pour out in those days of my Spirit; and they shall prophesy:

19 And I will shew wonders in heaven above, and signs in the earth beneath; blood, and fire, and vapour of smoke:

20 The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before that great and notable day of the Lord come:

21 And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.

Yet, after some years, God decides on a specific calling for our lives, something for us to do individually…He speaks to us, and sends us….

The word apostle, simply means: ‘sent one’.

Now, I can send my children to the refrigerator for milk, making them the apostle of milk!

Serve

In our reading today, this is not what Paul is talking about here. There is five fold ministry in the earth, set in place by the hand of God, to govern His church.

1Co 12:28 And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues.

1Co 12:29 Are all apostles? are all prophets? are all teachers? are all workers of miracles?

apostle

Eph 4:11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;

These offices are the government of God in the earth, with the authority, power, and grace from God, to accomplish what He needs established.

Rather than divert from the clear direction Holy Spirit is leading me today, please read: http://www.amazon.com/He-Gave-Gift…/…/0892765178/ref=sr_1_1…

Today, I am led to share about the journey from revelational position and spiritual authority, to practical authority, responsibility, and seasoned leadership, in authentic five fold ministry gifts operating in the earth, now.

Paul discovered himself, initially, in his early years of ministry, to be great in the kingdom, called of God, with both spiritual and earthly authority. He was a king, priest and lord, subject only to the King of all Kings,High Priest we confess, and the Lord of all Lords!

2Co 11:5 For I suppose I was not a whit behind the very chiefest apostles.

What caused the apostle Paul, to call himself the ‘very chiefest of apostles’?

He had a revelation from heaven, and it was incredibly great!

Yet, the character of the Master, must become the character of the servant.

serve Jesus

By the end of his life, we read, the same apostle Paul:

1Ti 1:15 This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief.

The journey of life, from chief apostle, to chief of all sinners….

From king, priest and power, to

1 Cor 4: 9 For I think that God hath set forth us the apostles last, as it were appointed to death: for we are made a spectacle unto the world, and to angels, and to men.

Did his identity change? Did God demote him?

Ro 11:29 For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance.

Nope, promoted him actually, so much so that he wrote over half of the New Testament.

promotion

God did not change, but Paul did!

Consider carefully these words of Jesus:

Luke 22: 25 And he said unto them, The kings of the Gentiles exercise lordship over them; and they that exercise authority upon them are called benefactors.

26 But ye shall not be so: but he that is greatest among you, let him be as the younger; and he that is chief, as he that doth serve.

27 For whether is greater, he that sitteth at meat, or he that serveth? is not he that sitteth at meat? but I am among you as he that serveth.

28 Ye are they which have continued with me in my temptations.

29 And I appoint unto you a kingdom, as my Father hath appointed unto me;

30 That ye may eat and drink at my table in my kingdom, and sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel.

What I want you to see, is this. Your eternal rank, privilege, and reward, are given to you by God Himself, AS A SERVANT!

Jesus serves

Ro 8:29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.

I have discovered this as a missionary, first back to Canada my home country, and now to Tulsa, Oklahoma, to the United States of America, and the nations, that my heavenly office, authority, and position are secure.

Yet in the natural order of life, my day to day walk, I have become a spectacle unto the world, a laughing stock from my family, colleagues from college, former business leadership friends, where I am at best, misunderstood.

Even angels, that minister to me, my family, and the nations through me, are probably amazed at what I put up with, and undergo, to obey God, intimately, personally, daily, as even my fellow brothers and sisters at my church, probably question my sanity (Gotta admit, I question it some days too!), as again, and again, Jesus speaks, leads, and moves me far outside my comfort zone, as my deeper insecurities, need for control, position, and pride are stripped away, that the love of the kingdom of God, through pure motives might shine through me.

If you are called to lead, He is doing the same thing in you, too.

The great violinist, Niccolo Paganini willed his marvelous violin to city of Genoa on condition that it must never be played. The wood of such an instrument, while used and handled, wears only slightly, but set aside, it begins to decay. Paganini’s lovely violin has today become worm-eaten and useless except as a relic. A Christian’s unwillingness to serve may soon destroy his capacity for usefulness.

J.K. Laney, Marching Orders, p. 34.

Not sure who this is for, but the very call of God upon you to greatness, has actually produced the deeper workings of the cross in your life, as you seek to obey Him intimately.

Dreams and visions that did not come to pass in your timing, produce a quiet peace, trust, and revelation of His Lordship, that He will make everything beautiful in His time. He has eternity on His mind, and a people on the other side of your obedience.

Obedience is the Word of the day, for if you are truly called of God, there is no other way, to get from here, to where you know you need to be, otherwise.

cross ray

1Co 15:31 I protest by your rejoicing which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily.

Have a Happy Death!

Ga 4:19 My little children, of whom I travail in birth again until Christ be formed in you,

Let’s pray:

‘”Father, I embrace the cross. I receive your process, and provision for the process, as I quietly hear, and obey, your voice, today. Jesus, you are my good Shepherd, may I clearly hear your voice, and fully obey you, today, Amen’

serve

 

Rivers of Life – Fruit in Season!

John 7:38 Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.” This tree reminds me of growing, seasoned leadership. How many rivers will flow out of us? Depends how many we put in! We can grow in leadership, ministries of compassion, teaching, healing, counselling, financial stewardship, prophetic, […]

40 fruithttps://www.cnet.com/news/beautiful-tree-grows-over-40-kinds-of-fruit/

John 7:38

Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.”

This tree reminds me of growing, seasoned leadership.

How many rivers will flow out of us?

Depends how many we put in!

We can grow in leadership, ministries of compassion, teaching, healing, counselling, financial stewardship, prophetic, prayer, worship, working with children, youth, missions, evangelism, disciplining leaders, and on it goes.

In each case, we know nothing, the Lord tells us to do it, and we begin to read, network with others in that area, learn, apply and grow in a particular area, and as we do, we begin to bear fruit in that area!

How much fruit?

What kind of fruit?

Well, that all depends upon what we put into our hearts…. Take time to grow today, graft another branch on to your living tree of Jesus life flowing through you, then raise up an orchard of multi-fruited trees!

2 Timothy 2:15 [Full Chapter]

Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

We have been grafted into the true vine, Jesus the Christ, and as we abide in Him, the sap, that is Holy Spirit flows through us to bear much fruit for the kingdom of God.

Therefore if anyone is in Christ [that is, grafted in, joined to Him by faith in Him as Savior], he is a new creature [reborn and renewed by the Holy Spirit]; the old things [the previous moral and spiritual condition] have passed away. Behold, new things have come [because spiritual awakening brings a new life]

Let’s Pray:

‘Father, bring resources into my life, to graft additional fruit producing ministries into my life, and help me to recognize these, and take time to study and apply them to my life, in Your name I pray Lord Jesus, Amen’

need-prayer

https://chrisaomministries.com/2016/08/06/the-purpose-of-this-blog/

The Press and the Process – NO COMPROMISE!

The Press! Sometimes in life, you just gotta go for it! Been thinking about this particular season of transition in my life, as I have gone from being a moving and shaking businessman as a contractor, to becoming more and more obedient to the heavenly call in full time missions these past years, to now, […]

The Press!

pressed

Sometimes in life, you just gotta go for it! Been thinking about this particular season of transition in my life, as I have gone from being a moving and shaking businessman as a contractor, to becoming more and more obedient to the heavenly call in full time missions these past years, to now, carefully balancing construction as a part time superintendent, to staying aggressively in the face of God to maintain my place in the office and the call….

‘As the things of earth, grow strangely dim, in the light of His glory and grace’ the song goes..

The years of brutally hard work, and then before that the grueling schedule needed to survive my college degree, while maintaining national level fitness in the sport of triathlon, have come back to remind me, that the disciplines that must be in place, to be a champion.

Knowing my passion and drive, I have learned that I must come under the tight rein of the Holy Spirit, desperate for His presence, His voice, His leading, or the self imposed disciplines I would apply to myself, would bury me.

Yet, when we determine to settle for nothing other than the high calling of God in Christ Jesus, without compromise, and hunger for truth, and power with God, seems about every human relationship feels the test of the call.

press

In the natural, I have given it all. There is no financial seed left to give…in order to merely live each day, Jesus HAS to provide, there is no plan B.

And day by day, challenge by challenge, He has proved Himself faithful.

Has it been brutal? Yes!

Has it been rewarding?

To see the nations changed in prayer, the multitudes moved through my intercession, the experience the radical intimacy and fulfillment that only He can give, I must say, ‘YES!”.

Though I have nothing financially left, I get alone with Him, having stood upon His promises, and I look at the stars in the heavens…He made them!

He will reward this particular stand of faith, and He will not only restore everything I have given, and given up for Him, but will multiply it, and prosper me with not merely heavenly riches, but I will see wealth, and prosperity again, here, in the earth, in my life, supernaturally, by His hand.

prosperity harvest

To say I have been misunderstood, criticized, etc, would be an understatement, but I am consumed with One who totally satisfies, and I find myself loving people more and more, yes caring less and less whether they love back, or understand…

His voice, His presence, His Word come alive, are more than enough….

Certain things though, are only ‘as He wills..’

His timings, His gifts of the Holy Spirit, His appointments into public ministries, and His financial provisions and breakthroughs, we believe we receive them, and fight for them in faith, daily, yet, if the day ends, and it has not happened yet, then we roll the care of it over upon Him, and deliberately trust that He is faithful, that which He has spoken, that which we have believed we received, will surely come to pass.

faith

In moments of weakness, I have heard Him say, ‘Are you still willing?’, and repeatedly, I have said, ‘Yes, Lord, strengthen, equip me to the responsibility before me, give me grace to survive the brutality of the savage unbelief, and contest of wills around me…;

Some days, I reread, Heb 5:7  Who in the days of his flesh, when he had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him that was able to save him from death, and was heard in that he feared;

The brutality, the attempted tyranny of the ungodly expectations of people, who are not hearing, seeing, experiencing what is screaming inside of you…

I understand the heart of Paul, when he exclaimed…

Ac 26:19  Whereupon, O king Agrippa, I was not disobedient unto the heavenly vision:

Hab 2:3  For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry.

I am not a Calvinist, believing in the great sovereignty of God, like we are some fluff in the wind of the cosmos.

No, I am a son of my heavenly Father, and a man of faith, passion, authority, passionately standing upon His promises, that He must fulfill, for He cannot lie.

What does faith look like though, when each day, as you believe, that which you have prayed for most definitely does not come to pass? When it feels like the heavens are brass, and that our faith confessions seem to hit some kind of metal dome over our heads, unheard by God?

In our anguish of soul, comes the comforter, the great One in the earth, the breath and voice of God, and He brings words of encouragement, that nothing on this earth can compare to…

Simple words, like ‘Child, I love you, and I hear your heart, your quietest whispers in the night, and I am with you, and am bringing to pass that which you have believed, for did I not promise and commission these things to you?’

Simple comforts like: ‘You have done my perfect will today!”

courage Jesus

These keep me going, like Joseph:

Ps 105:19  Until the time that his word came: the word of the LORD tried him.

There is a timing of a thing, and until that appointed time, I am aggressively reading, praying in tongues, after doing my faith confessions for the day, for I must keep my faith fed, strong, and I must fill my soul with good teaching, to grow, to press, to feed the raging hungers inside my heart!

Ps 17:3  Thou hast proved mine heart; thou hast visited me in the night; thou hast tried me, and shalt find nothing; I am purposed that my mouth shall not transgress.

I fight to keep my words right, for this is the way of perfection, holiness, and as I allow the Word to grow and work deeper and deeper in my heart, this becomes easier and easier, for as my deepest desires are changed, as He takes His knife to my fears, my filth, my stinking thinking, a practical purity emerges. I don’t have to rigidly watch my confessions as much, for out of my transformed heart, my mouth speaks, and good things come out…

courage2

Ps 18:30  As for God, his way is perfect: the word of the LORD is tried: he is a buckler to all those that trust in him.

I trust in Him. He has spoken. I am sorely tried, but after it is all done, I shall be that vessal of honor described in the Word, purged, and fully fit for the Masters use…

Passionate love is worth the pursuit….

God is love….

Let’s pray:

‘Father, I know You, and I hear Your voice. May I not shrink back, or give up, but bring you great glory, in believing. Strengthen me to fully obey, without compromise or reservation, exactly what You have shown me. Comfort me daily, and equip me, for the responsibility of the call, in Your name I pray Lord Jesus.Amen’

Whatever Your Hand finds to Do..

daily discipline
Ec 9:10 Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might; for there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom, in the grave, whither thou goest.

Seems the secret to success, is in the daily, faithful, routine.

We do due diligence to our responsibilities (however boring and drudgerous that may seem at the time), and push the limits on growth, as we develop in our gift and calling, constantly improving spiritually, academically, physically, relationally, financially, and in our overall ability to handle responsibility.

Show me your schedule, and I’ll show you your future…

Are you seeking first Jesus?

Do you get up each morning, spend time in prayer, and Bible reading?
Have you implemented a lifestyle of exercise, healthy eating, and regular sleep?

Where do you work?

What are you doing to improve your career?

How much time will you spend reading, growing, learning today?

How is your family?

If you are married, when is the last time you had a date with your spouse?

Do you spend time with your children? How’s that going?
promotion

God sees, knows, and promotes, making everything beautiful in His time. As we wait on His time to open doors for us, we redeem the time, daily in discipline, improving our game….

The great tragedy of the human experience then, is not the depths of degradation we have fallen into, but rather, in light of redemption, and what Jesus accomplished for us in His death, burial and resurrection from the grave, how little we actually achieve in light of what is possible for us.

Each day, we all have those 24 precious little box cars in the train of life called TIME!

What we do with this precious gift, is of eternal importance.

Seek Him, Find Him, obey Him, and then flow, and life on fire with passion and purpose, blazing bright for Jesus today!

Consuming Fire

Yesterday is gone, tomorrow is not promised, live victoriously, TODAY!

Let’s Pray:

‘Father, today, I seek You for Your place and plan for my life. I seek to fulfill the high calling upon my life, my eternal destiny in Jesus, created before the foundation of the world, for me to walk in, without compromise. I love you Jesus, light me on fire for you in this world, that people might see the passion of your love for them. Holy Spirit, lead me, flow through me, not only now, here in this time, but throughout the whole of my day, Amen’

Making a ‘Supply’ of the Holy Spirit Available Today!

Philippians 1:19(KJV) 19 For I know that this shall turn to my salvation through your prayer, and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ, Are you in ministry? The gospel always goes forward on its knees, as broken hearted servants cry out to God for His servants, and God delivers them, and they do what […]

Philippians 1:19(KJV)

19 For I know that this shall turn to my salvation through your prayer, and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ,

Holy Spirit supply

Are you in ministry?

The gospel always goes forward on its knees, as broken hearted servants cry out to God for His servants, and God delivers them, and they do what we do – preach the gospel, heal the sick, cast out devils, teach, make disciples, build projects, and perform the acts of Jesus love that alleviate human suffering wherever we can – the stuff.

That involves all of us, not just five-fold ministry gifts and offices:

And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation;
ministry reconciliation

Yet, in the midst of this we quickly learn that strict obedience to Jesus is mandatory, for we often find ourselves in brutal tests, trials, that require the power of God to extricate ourselves. In this opening verse, history tells us the apostle Paul had been shipwrecked, and wrote from prison. He saw how he was going to get out too, through the supply of the Spirit made available to him, as his friends in Phillipi prayed for him!

What the Church needs today is not more machinery or better, not new organizations or more novel methods, but men whom the Holy Ghost can use–men of prayer, men mighty in prayer.

E.M.Bounds

We are the Body of Christ, and quickly we discover there are no big ‘I’s’ and little ‘you’s’ in the kingdom of God, we are all called, we are all needed, and the kingdom grows ONLY as we work together, in our place.

Ephesians 4:16King James Version (KJV)

16 From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.

Eph 4-16

We must each do OUR part, bringing our particular supply of the Holy Spirit, the life blood of the Body, and so the kingdom grows, becomes healthy, strong, victorious.

The moment you wake up each morning, all your wishes and hopes for the day rush at you like wild animals. And the first job each morning consists in shoving it all back; in listening to that other voice, taking that other point of view, letting that other, larger, stronger, quieter life come flowing in.

C.S. Lewis

PRAY FOR US!

And so the intercessors enter the fray, and they begin to pray for us, with prayers that slap heaven and earth together, and as they do, rivers from the throne, supplies of His Spirit, become available to us.

When almighty God shows up, we get delivered from our current trial, with great glory to His name.

Holy Spirit help

MOBILIZE PRAYER!

So, if you are a Christian leader, mobilize prayer. Without it, your troubles may well destroy you.

I heard Dr. Negiel Bigpond say that true intercessors are assassins, trained killers. They attack and kill things in the spirit that would surely kill you, if they had not prayed.

build church key

Are you a prayer warrior? Please add me and other missionaries to your daily prayer list, we cannot do it without you.

Are you called to Go, preach teach and make disciples?

“…Men may spurn our appeals, reject our message, oppose our arguments, despise our persons — but they are helpless against our prayers.”

Sidlow Baxter

After 25 years in this thing, I am convinced that the most important thing that we can do is mobilize prayer for the Spirit inspired directives we are called to perform in the earth.

https://chrisaomministries.com/2016/08/06/the-purpose-of-this-blog/

Let’s Pray:

‘Father, I ask you would raise up intercessors, and faithful prayer warriors for me, my family, and my mandate in this generation. I ask that we remain faithful to pray for those providing leadership to the kingdom of God, and for those you have called us to serve today. Holy Spirit, I need You. Touch me, deliver me, direct me, work in and through me today for Your good pleasure. I ask this, knowing I am heard, for I ask in Your name Lord Jesus, Amen.’

Eagles Still Go to Church! Today!

Eagles Still Go to Church! Luk 17:37 And they answered and said unto him, Where, Lord? And he said unto them, Wheresoever the body is, thither will the eagles be gathered together. I like to think about this verse literally. Eagles fly alone in general, except when they find their mate, for life. Yet, here, […]

Eagles Still Go to Church!

eagle

Luk 17:37 And they answered and said unto him, Where, Lord? And he said unto them, Wheresoever the body is, thither will the eagles be gathered together.

I like to think about this verse literally. Eagles fly alone in general, except when they find their mate, for life.

eagle-pair

Yet, here, God calls a people to Himself, the Body of Christ, and here, in the church, the Bride of Jesus, eagles gather.

eagle-flock

You, are a unique, privileged, child of the king, with a specific, individual destiny and calling in Him. We hear the voice of God, and soar high on the winds of His grace, Holy Spirit leading us into higher and higher levels of truth in the Word of God, in our business, our family, revelation often separating us unto God Himself, for only He who gave the insight, truly understands the incredibly complex creation that we are, and the intricacies of our lives.

eagles-gods-voice

Yet, we are not called to fly alone, we are part of the body of Christ. Though much of our week may be alone, in our unique calling, where the Body is, we gather.

Leaders go to church.

Ro 15:1 We then that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not to please ourselves.

2 Let every one of us please his neighbour for his good to edification.

3 For even Christ pleased not himself; but, as it is written, The reproaches of them that reproached thee fell on me.

Jesus is Lord, the ultimate leader, yet He comes to church!

Saying, I will declare thy name unto my brethren, in the midst of the church will I sing praise unto thee.

praise

Heb 10: 25 Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.

2Th 2:3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;

The days of lone ranger Christianity are gone. You were not designed to walk alone, totally. You are part of the Body of Christ, and where the Body is, eagles gather…

eagles-gather

Let’s pray:

‘Father, show me the areas I need to fly alone in life, the unique, individual plans you have for me, in this life. Yet, despite my uniqueness, you have called me to the Body of Christ, and given me a place there. Help me to find my place, and help others around me. In your name I pray Lord Jesus, Amen’

Four Stages of Manhood – Part 3 – Fatherhood

The Four Stages of Manhood – Fatherhood

fatherhood boysI am producing a series of short, Biblical articles on manhood, and the four stages that I see from the Word of God, we grow through, both naturally and spiritually. These four stages are:

Boyhood

Manhood

Fatherhood

The Age of the Patriarch

Today, we will look at fatherhood.

We talked about the passage of rights from boyhood into manhood, and how men have a warrior inside of them, needing to for fight for the right things…

Yet, boys become men, fall in love, and get married. In the fullness of time, the fruit of that love becomes a family, and children are born. Now, the mighty warrior, with the wild and crazy side has to grow up and face the ‘R’ word – Responsibility. He is still a warrior, but now he picks his battles and fights not for himself, but only to protect his family, community and nation. Freedom has never been free, and free men have always stood up in tough times, and fought for liberty and justice for all. It is always our prayer that there be peace, and that these battles be won in prayer…for God is the ultimate Father, and anyone who has held a helpless newborn in his arms gets a fresh revelation of:

Isaiah 40:11

He shall feed his flock like a shepherd: he shall gather the lambs with his arm, and carry them in his bosom, and shall gently lead those that are with young.

Suddenly we find we need the peace and gentleness of God, that we might say, like king David, the ultimate warrior did, so many years ago:

Psalm 18:35

Thou hast also given me the shield of thy salvation: and thy right hand hath holden me up, and thy gentleness hath made me great

fatherhood egg in vice

Meekness is not weakness, it is strength under control…

 

As I have meditated upon this article, and thought of my journey as a father and dad, I decided to review some Scriptures on parenting, that I list here for your edification:

Fatherhood Scriptures

Malachi 4:6

And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.

 Luke 1:17

And he shall go before him in the spirit and power of Elias, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a people prepared for the Lord

Luke 11:7

And he from within shall answer and say, Trouble me not: the door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot rise and give thee.

Luke 11:13

If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?

 Luke 18:15-17

And they brought unto him also infants, that he would touch them: but when his disciples saw it, they rebuked them. But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Suffer little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God. Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child shall in no wise enter therein.

 Acts 2:39

For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call

 Romans 8:16

The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:

Romans 8:17

And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.

Romans 8:21

Because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God

 1 Corinthians 4:15

For though ye have ten thousand instructers in Christ, yet have ye not many fathers: for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the gospel

2 Corinthians 12:14

Behold, the third time I am ready to come to you; and I will not be burdensome to you: for I seek not yours, but you: for the children ought not to lay up for the parents, but the parents for the children

 1 Thessalonians 2:7

But we were gentle among you, even as a nurse cherisheth her children:

 Colossians 3:21

Fathers, provoke not your children to anger, lest they be discouraged.

Ephesians 6:4

And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.

 1 Timothy 3:4

one that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity;

Hebrews 12:9

Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live?

1 John 2:13

I write unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I write unto you, young men, because ye have overcome the wicked one. I write unto you, little children, because ye have known the Father.

1 John 2:14

I have written unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the word of God abideth in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one.

I recall a series I taught several times over the years on getting to know God as Father, entitled ‘The Father Heart of God’. I taught seven lessons on Pappa God, describing Him as:

Lesson 1: Protector,

Lesson 2: Provider

Lesson 3: Disciplinarian

Lesson 4: Mentor

Lesson 5: A Warrior who fights for His church

Lesson 6: Nurturer

Lesson 7: The preparer of the Bride for His Son.

Knowing God as OUR Father is critical to becoming whole as men. No matter how great our earthly fathers were, they only brought so much to the table, and God has designed his universe that He have no grandchildren, only children, born-again through Jesus, and adopted into the royal family of heaven.

While these truths of the character of Father God are eternal and of critical consequence to those of us who have huge unmet spiritual needs in our homes, the question is how do we incorporate these attributes of Father God into our own hearts and homes, to fulfill:

Genesis 18:19

For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgment; that the Lord may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him

That God would know us, trust us, become so intimate with us, that He might trust us to raise children and our household up after Him!

So , if there is interest, I will post these messages on the Father Heart of God, but for now methinks I will see what an earthly father might look like, who was trying to emulate these seven traits of Father God.

fatherhood God

Protector: Like I said last teaching, being a man means being a warrior. Now we have a wife to love and children to protect, whether from the school yard bully, the dead beat teacher, or the academic bully in the schools of learning. Children need to know that they are safe in pappa’s arms, and that no matter what happens, daddy will fight for them, stand up for them, that even if they are wrong. Daddy loves them, and has only their best interests at heart.

I remember the story of the boy that was shopping with his family for groceries and met a couple of school buddies. They were in a different isle from their family, laughing and telling jokes, when a store clerk grabbed them by the neck and started marching them to the door, when they had really done nothing to justify it, when in the isle appeared the boys father. With words of steel came the command: ‘Take your hands off my son!” The clerk sputtered, ‘He was messing with customers!” without missing a breath, the dad quietly said: ‘I’ll deal with the boy, now you deal with me!’

Suddenly the clerk realized he was about get seriously hurt, if he did not let the boys go. The boy, deeply relieved went home with his dad, who listened carefully to his son, realizing the boy had done nothing to justify the clerks meaness, so no further action was required at home.

Fathers protect their familes.

Provide

Fatherhood provision

Luke 11:13

If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?

Fathers give good gifts to their children….

2 Corinthians 12:14

Behold, the third time I am ready to come to you; and I will not be burdensome to you: for I seek not yours, but you: for the children ought not to lay up for the parents, but the parents for the children

– God placed it in the heart of man a fire to provide for his family. No matter what particular vocation he chooses to do battle in, he is created to work. Not out of compulsion, but because God works, and God loves to roll up His sleeves alongside one of His children, and work with Him to see a job through to completion. God loves Monday mornings, because He is a creator, and He loves to create still, and gets joy as His children create wonderful projects, businesses, systems, programs, ministries, administrations reflective of His love, grace, glory and goodness towards humanity. The whole universe revolves around His provision, now we are to be good providers for our families and our households.

Gotta be honest here, I have been wealthy and presently we are financially very poor., yet there is always food on the table, and we always have what we need, although we have our faith in God to supply our wants!

Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power. – Abraham Lincoln

I have had poverty, and seasons of prosperity, and I have learned this: with prosperity comes responsibility. If we can handle the responsibility, prosperity is a great blessing!

If we are going to be like God, we need to provide for our families, carefully supplying their needs, never their greeds. Teaching them to use their faith in God to provide for them, and their own work…Part of training up a child…

When one of my children asks me for something, I never tell them we cannot afford it, for this is foolishness in light of the infinite God who created the universe that our family serves. I simply say, “Pray about it, ask Jesus, and I will agree with you in prayer..” Bikes, Ipads, computers and various blessings have come to our home exactly this way, when we clearly did not have the money for them. God, through many, many miraculous circumstances as God made it clear that He is large and in charge of our lives…

Yet, by the grace of God, Jesus has given me the heart of my children. They love me, hug me, and want to be with me, a gift I am forever grateful for…

Disciplinarian –

fatherhood obedience

Hebrews 12:9

Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live?

1 Timothy 3:4

one that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity;

Ephesians 6:4

And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.

Proverbs 22:6

Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.

Ah, the forgottan role of parents, discipline. Jesus did say to go and make disciples of all nations, and before we go, we need to discipline our own homes.

  1. dis·ci·pline

the practice of training people to obey rules or a code of behavior, using punishment to correct disobedience.

“a lack of proper parental and school discipline”

synonyms: control, training, teaching, instruction, regulation, direction, order, authority, rule, strictness, a firm hand

In a great course we took at Sunday school entitled ‘Growing Kids Gods Way’ where we were taught many great principals of parenting but I wish to amplify only two of them here:

  1. First time obedience –Children are instructed by God to obey their parents in the Lord. When we directly command them to do something, they must obey, or there must be immediate consequences for disobedience.
  2. The moral reason why – As soon as a child grows to the point of understanding, they should be instructed as to the moral reason why they must obey a given command.

When a child is able to understand why they are to instantly obey what they are commanded, with immediate consequences given for disobedience. No threatening, screaming, emotional escalation, simple truth or consequences. Consequences may range from a tap on the back of the hand for a toddler, a time-out, revoking priviliges, toys or treats, or the board of education being applied to the seat of higher learning. (spanking)

fatherhood consequences

This is not an in-depth course on parenting but I will make a couple of points:

  1. Discipline should not be delegated solely to the mother. Making daddy into Mr. sugar daddy, full of hugs, kisses and treats, with mom having to be the ‘bad guy’ when children act up. Men, we are head of our house, and our children must obey us. We need to take time to teach, instruct, nurture, love and spend quality time with them, so that we disciple them in the things of God in love.
    1. A child should never be disciplined in anger! If a child is directly defiant, and pitching a fit, give them then a time-out, and then carefully explain the moral reason why they are being spanked, then spank them.
    2. “Spankings are a rare event in our home, because I spend daily time with my children teaching them the Bible, and listening to their opinions about any movie, book, or information they have heard from their friends. We love each other, and trust each other, so they are not afraid to tell me things that are troubling them.

One day at the office, I had to work late, so the family met me at the local Reesor’s over in Jenks at the Deli for supper, so that we could at least see each other that day. It was the night before pay-day, and I only had enough to buy everyone’s dinner, but we had to order water’s to go with it, because we didn’t have enough. At that time, my son was around 4, and he wanted a Dr. Pepper. I had told him no, and we sat down at the little café tables and quickly ate together, so I could get back to the office to complete the bid submission due the following morning, for a large project, our company really needed.

Over the next couple of days, I heard a couple of interesting comments from my children, but I hadn’t put the pieces together yet. My son had asked if children went to jail sometimes, and my daughter had asked me why people have to go jail (Deep thoughts for a six year old). I had explained to her that when we went to the OKC zoo, and she thought she was playing with a lioness that carefully stalked her through the glass, that the reason that cat was in a cage, is because it wanted to eat her! That unfortunately, there are people like that cat, that are predators, that are only safe to be around when they are behind bars, unless Jesus changed their heart, and made them safe to live free with the rest of us. Yet, my son kept asking if kids could go to jail for being bad, to the point where my wife felt I needed to have a talk with him, as he was really troubled.

So I asked him, “Son, why do you keep asking if children can go to jail, have you done something you shouldn’t have?” Immediately he began to cry, and blurted out: “Dad, I stole a Dr. Pepper over at Reesors! Do I have to go to jail?”

Although it was pretty comical seeing his distress, in a moment of inspiration, I stopped what I was doing, and said, ‘Come on son, get in the truck, we need to go for a ride.” He was still crying, and didn’t know where we were going, but he knew I loved him, and wouldn’t hurt him.

So, as we drove I explained to him my world, how I fought to keep my word, my commitments, to honor my employees, my clients, my supplies, and of course our company and all the families involved.  I explained to him, how Jeff Reesor had created his company, bigger than ours, and how hard he had worked to build it, and that stealing was wrong, even if other people were doing it (He had his water cup, and filled it with Dr. Pepper), and that we had to pay for the drink he stole. That we were going back to Reesors, to ask forgiveness for what he stole, and to pay for his drink.

He was terrified, but we went into the store, explained to the cashier what had happened (like me, she had a hard time not laughing), then I called for the manager, and asked if I could pay for my son’s drink. He said, that because we were honest, it was on the house, but I insisted on paying anyway, explaining it was for the good of my son. (If I remember right, I bought him a treat too), and then we headed home.

I told him that God was that way. God loves us, and while He will never agree with doing wrong, if we fess up when we mess up, He will always help us get out of whatever mess we made by our bad choice.

1 John 1:9

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness

The story didn’t end there. When we got home, before he ran off to play I called him over to the fireplace, and reached in my pocket for the receipt for his drink. I told him, that this receipt was how much his drink cost, and proof that I had paid the price for it. I then reached up on the mantle, grabbed the lighter, and burned that paper, forever gone. I then explained to him, that is what Jesus does with our sin, that He removes it as far as the east is from the west, forever gone out of our lives… Though I am sharing this story with you, I have never ever bullied nor brought it up with him again.. we forgive, and FORGET.

This is my take on redemptive discipline….

Mentor- Fathers grow as children grow. It is my hope and prayer that I have created enough love and respect  in the hearts of my children that they would always respect my wisdom, counsel, advice and potential direction for their lives, yet never be limited by it.
mentor will smith

As I have moved in leadership over the years, there have been some long, lonely nights of prayer, as I make decisions before God that at times, have eternal consequence, anquished times where I have honestly not known what to do in damage control where things on a project or in a relationship have gone wrong.I call this being mentored by God…Where He gives me wisdom, after years of instruction, and then leaves me to make my own decision…God instructs us, and mentors us, very gently as men…

I call this being mentored by God…Where He gives me wisdom, after years of instruction, and then leaves me to make my own decision…

“Remember that mentor leadership is all about serving. Jesus said, “For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give his life as a ransom for many” (Mark 10:45).” ― Tony Dungy, The Mentor Leader: Secrets to Building People and Teams That Win Consistently

God instructs us, and mentors us, very gently as men…

Psalm 18:35

Thou hast also given me the shield of thy salvation: and thy right hand hath holden me up, and thy gentleness hath made me great.

So He expects us to be gentle with our children.

Philippians 4:5   He shall feed his flock like a shepherd: he shall gather the lambs with his arm, and carry them in his bosom, and shall gently lead those that are with young

 

I love the way Jesus deals with me as my Lord, and now, my best friend:

I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.

 

Satan drives his followers, Jesus, gently leads His…Be gentle dads, gentlemen!

Warrior who fights for his family! –

honor1

Joshua 1:9

Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.

1 Corinthians 16:13

Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong.

Ephesians 6:10

Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.

2 Timothy 2:1

Thou therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.

There is no room for limp-wristed faith here! I spoke on men being men in the last article, that warrior hood is one of the signs of healthy manhood. There is one difference in fatherhood – we are no longer looking for a fight, in fact we are fighting for peace!

manhood castrated

We champion our wives and children, and the cause of Christ, and there will be battles enough, simply holding down a job, keeping children on track academically, protecting them from bullies and evil people wherever they are found, yet fathers only fight to protect their families.

I have said it this way to some ‘tough guy’ looking to pick a fight.

“Look buddy, I am here to work, not fight. If you insist, you can slap me, and I will turn the other cheek, for Jesus loves you and so do I. Yet, if you try slapping my wife or children, I will kill you if necessary. It is not personal, I have a God given responsibility to protect them…”

So, far, every bully has backed down over the years, and I have never had to shoot anyone by the grace of God (although there have been two very close calls with would be household intruders that decided to stop trying to break down my front door when I told them to go home, because if they came through my door, I would kill them. I will protect my family, whatever it takes…

Enough said. My primary passions are fighting the fight of faith in prayer, Fighting for excellence in my children, staying in passionate pursuit of Jesus. When I do, He protects, provides, instructs my children, brings me and my house into divine order and peace….

Nurturer – In my series, the Father Heart of God, I showed how God is a great nurturer, giving hugs, tons of affirmation, always ready to love, listen, and get involved with what I am doing. He loves us!

fatherhood nurter

So, it has been with our family. We are all snuggle buddies, often curled up on the sofa watching movies, or lying down with the kids as we tuck them into bed listening as they pour out their hearts to us about everything from their music, their friends, their video games, or their moral decisions. Though I will say little about this important topic, it is critical in the life of a child!

“Be the one who nurtures and builds. Be the one who has an understanding and a forgiving heart one who looks for the best in people. Leave people better than you found them.” ― Marvin J. Ashton

“the seriousness of emotional deprivation: It is not difficult to understand how children who have suffered from malnutrition or starvation need food and plenty of care in their bodies are to recover so they can go on to lead normal lives. If, however, the starvation is severe enough, the damage will be permanent and they will suffer physical impairments for the rest of their lives. Likewise, children who are deprived of emotional nurturing require care and love if their sense of security and self-confidence is to be restored. However, if love is minimal and abuse high, the damage will be permanent and the children will suffer emotional impairments for the rest of their lives.” ― Mark Z. Danielewski

Though I understand the wounds caused by abuse, trauma, neglect run deep, the love of our heavenly Father goes deeper still!

The world could be a little less cruel, if we nurture each other while we grow; learn understanding while we transform and maintain a humble attitude whilst we succeed.” ― Nikki Rowe

Fathers need to love and nurture their children, as much as mothers do.

Romantic, passionate pursuer of God
bride1

Real dads love their wives, and fight to keep the romance alive. The Scriptures tell us that we, the church, are the bride of Christ, and there is a passionate, romantic side of Jesus, where we are pursued with a furious, passionate love.

Somehow as fathers, we need to emulate that. Passionately in pursuit of God staying radically in love with our wives. Constantly surprising them with gifts, kisses, love notes, and keeping the banner of love alive in our homes. All of this is a celebration of our marriage covenant. (By the way men, if you are not married, either buy a ring, and get married today, or if you are involved with someone sexually that is not your wife, end it, today – Friends with benefits – are not part of the kingdom of God)

Somehow, as fathers we are to receive passion, fire, zeal and strength from heaven as a celebration of our covenant with God, and we are to carry the commandments of God to our children in a loving life-givng way, that they would honestly want to serve Jesus, because He is awesome, not out of logistic legalistic religious duty.

I end where I began:

Genesis 18:19

For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgment; that the Lord may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him

I have decided to follow Jesus, no turning back, no turning back…

Joshua 24:15 [Full Chapter]

And if it seem evil unto you to serve the Lord, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.

Ecclesiastes 12:13

Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.

Despite my human frailities, and countless mistakes over the years, it is my hope and prayer, that I serve Jesus well enough, that when the time comes for my children to leave the nest, and make their own mark on this world, that they will choose Jesus as Lord and Shepherd of their lives too…

We train up our children in the way they should go, and then we deliberately trust Jesus with their lives, that as they age, they will serve God and live happy productive lives!

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Give in faith!

1 Corinthians 9:11 If we have sown [the seed of] spiritual good among you, [is it too] much if we reap from your material benefits?

1 Corinthians 9:14 [On the same principle] the Lord directed that those who publish the good news (the Gospel) should live (get their maintenance) by the Gospel.

Paul goes on to say, that he did not use his position as a minister of the gospel to take up offerings, rather he worked, making tents, to support himself. You might notice here, that Paul was not married, nor did he have children. Family responsibilities take time, and just as you bust a move on your job to provide for your family, I work every bit as hard, doing this, faithful to the Lord in prayer and the ministry of His Word, to you.

I will never charge for this: it my responsibility to God, my calling. Freely I have been given, now, I freely give…

As you give, hear Holy Spirit what to give, and honestly expect God to reward you for your giving.

Matt 10: 41 He who receives and welcomes and accepts a prophet because he is a prophet shall receive a prophet’s reward, and he who receives and welcomes and accepts a righteous man because he is a righteous man shall receive a righteous man’s reward. 42 And whoever gives to one of these little ones [in rank or influence] even a cup of cold water because he is My disciple, surely I declare to you, he shall not lose his reward.

I have ‘see through’ faith for you, in this: Gal 3: 9 So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.

I believe I have a responsibility before God to be like Jesus, in every offering I receive. I receive it with thanksgiving, just like Jesus did the little boys lunch.

Then, because I walk and live by faith according to the blessing of Abraham, I believe that God will take your seed sown, and multiply it, according to what the blessing of Abraham promises:

Genesis 22:17 In blessing I will bless you and in multiplying I will multiply your descendants like the stars of the heavens and like the sand on the seashore. And your Seed (Heir) will possess the gate of His enemies

It has been a joy to me, to see the hand of the living God act in the lives of those of you who have supported us this year!

Many have seen tremendous blessing come into your households, and for this we give thanks, and give Jesus all the glory!