When our ministry finishes – Jesus visits!

When we are done, Jesus comes!

love comes to town
Matt 11: ! 1 ¶ And it came to pass, when Jesus had made an end of commanding his twelve disciples, he departed thence to teach and to preach in their cities.

I love this verse! I see a Word picture painted here for the work of the ministry. We listen to Holy Spirit, and go into all the world and preach and teach the Word of God. Then, after the Word is preached, Jesus, Himself, goes where we have been to preach and teach in the cities where we have been! We prepare the way of the King! He backs up our work, with His presence, power and authority.

nothing word does it all
This is the work of the ministry, obeying Holy Spirit to prepare the way for the King.


He commands His disciples, then He Himself comes to build upon our work, establishing His kingdom in power and love!
Let’s Pray:
‘Jesus, mighty God, come and teach and preach in every household you have already sent me into with your Word! May they hear your voice, as you preach, teach, and demonstrate your love, in authority and power! Amen’

Women in Ministry? YES!

Women in Ministry Here we read of Junia the apostle, a fellowprisoner of Paul in the call of God, the ministry of our Lord Jesus Christ. Rom 16:7 Salute Andronicus and Junia, my kinsmen, and my fellowprisoners, who are of note among the apostles, who also were in Christ before me. 1) a Christian woman […]

Women in Ministry

women ministry

Here we read of Junia the apostle, a fellowprisoner of Paul in the call of God, the ministry of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Rom 16:7 Salute Andronicus and Junia, my kinsmen, and my fellowprisoners, who are of note among the apostles, who also were in Christ before me.

1) a Christian woman at Rome, mentioned by Paul as one of his kinsfolk and fellow prisoners

There are many Scriptures describing women called of God into ministry gifts and offices, yet there are men who argue that women have no place in leadership, that apostolic and leadership offices are only granted by God, to men.

Chauvinism, and ignornance gone to seed.

The gospel is that Jesus is Risen from the Dead! He is Lord.

Jesus woman

Think about this actual event, it was a woman, Mary, at the tomb, that Jesus stopped to visit with, and commission to go tell His disciples and Peter (who was not a disciple at that particular moment after denying Jesus) that He had Risen from the dead. This is the gospel.

Who sent her? Jesus Himself, Lord and God he Son, 2nd person of the Trinity. So God sends women.

Who was she sent to? Men! Yhe first church fathers, the apostles who gave us the church, and the New Testament), telling them that He had risen from the dead! Can women give a message from God to leaders? He sure did in this account!

Guess that makes the first preacher of the gospel, a woman, and, she was sent by God (remember Jesus is still God, the second person of the Trinity), and she was sent to preach to men.

Just sayin…

I believe God will use whosoever He desires, and that He clearly gifts five fold leadership gifts to the earth, to women, as well as men.

speak in churchGood luck with that. There are over 7 billion people on planet earth, and God is speaking through anyone that will listen. Men are not enough to get this great responsibility for the Great Commission done, so God has poured out His Spirit on all flesh, and men women are speaking the oracles of God!

Acts 2:17 And it shall be in the last days,’ God says,
That I will pour forth of My Spirit on all [q]mankind;
And your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,
And your young men shall see visions,
Let’s pray:

‘Father, I simply wish to follow you, to hear and obey. Let me hear your voice. Speak through your word, by your Spirit to me directly, or through men or women in leadership in your church, your bride, your government in the earth, in your name I pray Lord Jesus, Amen’

The Responsibility of Discipleship – A Word for Leaders

The Responsibility of Discipleship Some time ago, I attended the leadership portion of Word Explosion here at Victory in Tulsa, OK. A pastor that I had never heard of, who reported pastors a church of 15,000+ somewhere in the Eastern United States brought a word about the seasons of God in the church, and he […]

The Responsibility of Discipleship

disciple

Some time ago, I attended the leadership portion of Word Explosion here at Victory in Tulsa, OK.

A pastor that I had never heard of, who reportedly pastors a church of 15,000+ somewhere in the Eastern United States brought a word about the seasons of God in the church, and he was very articulate and relevant, in bringing out the various things Holy Spirit was accenting, decade by decade here in churches  in the United States.

From the Healing movement, to the Charismatic renewal, to teaching and the Word of Faith, to leadership, etc.

Then he made a couple of statements that confirmed things that Holy Spirit is screaming to me.

He explained that the day of a person simply accepting Jesus, receiving the baptism of the Holy Spirit, and attending church, is not enough in this upcoming season of God, but that what must occur is discipleship.

He went on to say, that to the average pastor, you would look for someone saved, filled with the Holy Spirit, attending regular worship services, attending a small group, and then serving somewhere in the ministry as good indicators of what a disciple should look like, and I agree these are good indicators, but here is where he and I take a different path to the same objective.

I believe a true disciple of Jesus, is a person that is fully led of the Holy Spirit, all day, every day.

Historically, there has been grave excesses in what is called ‘the discipleship, or Shepherding movement’

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shepherding_Movement

Yet, what about true discipleship?

Jesus said: Matthew 28:19

Go out and make disciples in all the nations.

YOUR Great Commission - Embracing YOUR Destiny!

I think back on my own discipleship experience with my pastor, where, for a period of 5-7 years, he had me read every book in his library, develop a strong devotional life and Bible reading plan, and had me serve in every area of the church for 3-6months.

Was that the end of my spiritual growth?

Was I fully prepared for ministry by this process?

No, but it was a great foundation.

And if you have not been faithful in the use of that which is another’s, who will give you that which is your own?
faith believe sunrise

So let’s dig into this concept of discipleship a bit:

Let’s begin by looking at the definition of a disciple:

Full Definition of DISCIPLE

1

:  one who accepts and assists in spreading the doctrines of another: as

a :  one of the twelve in the inner circle of Christ’s followers according to the Gospel accounts

b :  a convinced adherent of a school or individual

2

capitalized :  a member of the Disciples of Christ founded in the United States in 1809 that holds the Bible alone to be the rule of faith and practice, usually baptizes by immersion, and has a congregational polity

 

For the sake of simplicity, I call a disciple ‘a disciplined one’.

For example, when I swam on the college varsity swim team, I was expected to make 7 swim practices a week, and we usually did 2 weight work-outs on top of this. In order to stay on the team, I had to be a full time student and maintain a ‘C’ average academically.

swim

What this meant, was that literally every minute of my week, seven days/week was scheduled, so that we could survive not only the training schedule, but the weekends spent on buses travelling to inter-varsity swim meets all over the province.

I was a disciple of competitive swimming and robotics engineering, listening carefully to my Olympic coach on how to make all this possible.

Obviously I survived and completed three varsity seasons, and completed my BSc in robotics, by being a disciplined one…

I was a disciple of robotics and swimming. No Jesus anywhere though.

Yet, we are called to follow Jesus…

https://chrisaomministries.wordpress.com/2014/01/11/your-great-commission-embracing-your-destiny/

So what does a disciple of Jesus look like in today’s world?

Here are some thoughts:

  1. Aggressively following Jesus, having established a morning prayer watch, deliberately seeking Him first thing, every day.
  2. Walking in the Word in deliberate Bible reading, confession, memorization, study, and meditation.
  3. Consistently demonstrating the power of the Holy Spirit, with signs, wonders and miracles flowing in everyday life, in spirit-led days. Flowing in God all day, every day, not merely on Sundays, or in devotional times. Walking with Holy Spirit, one day at a time, fully submitted to Jesus Lordship.
  4. Consistently exhibiting the fruit of the Holy Spirit in our character, carefully watching over our words, that they be faith-filled, representing Jesus well, as an ambassador should.
  5. Consistently witnessing and sharing the gospel.(Here is a way to do this on-line:https://chrisaomministries.wordpress.com/2014/11/10/the-gospel-the-power-of-god/)
  6. Consistently growing their families in the call of God, through their example, love, consecration, and recognition and fulfillment of their responsibility in their role in the home
  7. Consistently attending church, and seeking to serve and build it, growing in faithfulness and responsibility.  https://chrisaomministries.wordpress.com/2014/12/04/why-go-to-church/
  8. Living a lifestyle of worship, singing, praying in the spirit, with an attitude of humility and gratefulness, demonstrating the acts of compassion the gospel commands: helping the poor, feeding the hungry, visiting the prisoner, the sick, clothing the naked, empowering the fatherless. https://chrisaomministries.com/2017/01/15/we-worship-by-serving-the-people-god-loves/
  9. Consistently seeking to grow in their gift and calling, spiritually, academically, and physically. https://chrisaomministries.com/2017/01/03/the-chinese-bamboo-a-parable-of-growth/
  10.  Consistently seeking to grow others in their gifts and callings, empowering, equipping, and encouraging them to hear and fully obey God in all things.
  11.    Consistently giving and growing financially, learning how best to keep money under the Lordship of Jesus as a good steward.
  12.    Deliberately seeking and pursuing our personal mandate, vocation, and assignment, individually, growing in responsibility levels, on purpose.

Jesus had 12 disciples.

These are simply 12 guidelines I seek to live by.

Yet, as I have meditated upon the concept of discipleship, I discover questions that have difficult answers.

I remember many years ago, an organization called Promise Keepers, encouraged us to find a Paul, and Barnabas, and a Timothy in our lives. The ‘Paul’ being a spiritual leader we could look to for leadership, mentorship, and instruction. The ‘Barnabas’ being a ‘son of encouragement’, another brother in the Lord we could look to for encouragement in the day to day battles of life, and the ‘Timothy’ being one we could pour life and wisdom into, one we were deliberately discipling.

This is a good start surely.

As we grow in our Christian walk, we surely need a pastor who can gently help us learn the basics of this Christian life and character development.

Through our growth process, God will bring the other 4 ministry offices to add strength and structure to the formation of Christ in us, the hope of glory.

Yet, as I have walked with God these years I see many of these ministers see the kingdom of God only through their particular ministry gift, and for humor I write:

The pastor:

GO TO CHURCH! Is it not written: Ps 122: I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go into the house of the Lord.”

Hebrews 10:25

not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.

Planted in the house of the Lord, They will flourish in the courts of our God

They are right! We all need to be part of a local church, https://chrisaomministries.wordpress.com/2014/12/04/why-go-to-church/

The apostle:

Then we have the apostle, often called the missionary today, whose favorite verse might be

Romans 15:20

And so I have made it my aim to preach the gospel, not where Christ was named, lest I should build on another man’s foundation

Kind like the old Star Trek television series, ‘To Go Boldly Where No Man Has Gone Before”

star trek

1 Corinthians 4:9

For I think that God has displayed us, the apostles, last, as men condemned to death; for we have been made a spectacle to the world, both to angels and to men.

Since the greatest in the kingdom is the servant of all, the true apostles I have met over the years are often gentle, suffering, humble servants of Jesus, who almost glow when they walk, carrying great spiritual authority and power….

We call them missionaries….

The Prophet:

Then there are prophets:

Wild creatures!

Dreams, Visions, revelations, ‘This is the Way Walk Ye in It!’ people.

A couple of verses from the office of the prophet, you often hear, when they show up:

Numbers 11:29

Then Moses said to him, “Are you zealous for my sake? Oh, that all the Lord’s people were prophets and that the Lord would put His Spirit upon them!”

Acts 2:17

‘And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God, That I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh; Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, Your young men shall see visions, Your old men shall dream dreams

1 Corinthians 14:1

[ Prophecy and Tongues ] Pursue love, and desire spiritual gifts, but especially that you may prophesy

It has been my experience that true prophets stir up controversy by what they say, apostles by what they do

Evangelists:

Repent, and get saved!

If you are not winning souls, I question your salvation!

These are the great soul winners, those called to train and equip believers for the work of winning the lost.

Biblically, they usually demonstrate great miracles to draw the crowds to the gospel.

Acts 8:6

And the multitudes with one accord heeded the things spoken by Philip, hearing and seeing the miracles which he did

A perfect modern day example of a firely evangelist is Rhinhart Bonnke, or now Danial King.

The Teacher:

Then there are the teachers

2 Timothy 2:15

Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

But the word of the Lord was unto them precept upon  precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little; that they might go, and fall backward, and be broken, and snared, and taken.

There have been great studies in the life of Jesus, showing how He is the ultimate apostle, pastor, prophet, evangelist and teacher, but what is the purpose of all of these gifts?

Here is a passage of Scripture I continually come back to:

Eph 4But to each one of us grace was given according to the measure of Christ’s gift. Therefore He says:

“When He ascended on high, He led captivity captive, And gave gifts to men.”[b]

(Now this, “He ascended”—what does it mean but that He also first[c] descended into the lower parts of the earth? 10 He who descended is also the One who ascended far above all the heavens, that He might fill all things.)

11 And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, 12 for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, 13 till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ; 14 that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting, 15 but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head—Christ—

16 from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love.

grow

So we are given men and women of God, from God, to grow us in the things of God, that we can be delivered from the trickery of men, that we can take our place in the Body of Christ, our particular spot, gift, place and calling, that the whole Body of Christ might grow as we edify each other in love.

Been thinking about some what a disciple might look like in 2015, and I see questions, not full answers before me.

Since Jesus only ministered on the earth to His 12 disciples for 3-1/2 years before appointing them leaders in His kingdom in the earth, as His representatives, can we as leaders raise up people to send, in a similar three and a half year time period?

Yes, He promised that we would perform greater works than His, yet He lived with His disciples 24/7 for His entire earthly ministry.

time greatest gift

How many of us are willing to embrace twelve people, and lovingly live with, teach, train, equip, and work with for 3-1/2 years until they are raised up in their particular ministries?

As I thought about the church structures in place across the earth, I see churches that place pastoral staff on salaries, but then how are the other four ministry gifts supposed to ethically receive financial support?

Do they simply attend a strong local church, and then perform their particular ministries outside of it’s four walls?

Evangelists raising up evangelistic centers that receive donations from the Body of Christ to finance their living support, and to host the crusades and conferences that train and equip us in the work of evangelism.

Prophets, who host conferences, and produce books and teaching materials to train and equip us in the prophetic…

Missionaries who solicit support to GO and perform missionary assignments, and to raise their families on the missions field.

Teachers, who receive salaries for teaching in the various educational institutes where they are called.

Somehow all this must flow through the local church, and how I have seen cat fights over money!

Should never be. All of us should tithe where the Lord directs, and I honestly believe if the Holy Spirit is fully in charge of the finances of His people, there will be no lack in God’s work being fully supported…

I was speaking about this today with Richard Lyons, who pastors the church we are helping pioneer.

I asked him: ‘Richard, here, in 2015, what does a true disciple of Jesus look like?’

He replied:

John 13:34

A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another.

John 13:35

By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”

So we see the fruit of a true disciple of Jesus, is true love exhibited in the earth, unconditional love shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit!

love one another

If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love; just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love.

[ Disciples’ Relation to Each Other ] “This is My commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you.

jesus_loves_you_the_path_to_heaven

Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends.

wealth greater love

This I command you, that you love one another
God is love
and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us

I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears muchfruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.

love stronger1
My Father is glorified by this, that you bear muchfruit, and so prove to be My disciples

So, as we deliberately seek to receive the love of Jesus, we find ourselves thrust out into this war-torn, sin-sick, broken world, with one great weapon, His love beating in our hearts.

This is the mark of a true disciple, loving people, with no strings attached, simply because He first loved us.

Love Loud Today Leader!

Love Loud0

All the evangelism, miracles, works of the ministry mean nothing without love…and love never fails!

Neither will you or I, as we deliberately love…

1 Timothy 1:5

Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned:

Come on disciple, let’s pray:

Father, I come to You today, knowing my needs! I need Your love, Your direction, Your strength and power to serve You in this, my generation. Flow through me to love loud today, those You have placed in my path today. I ask this, knowing I am loved and heard, for I ask in Your name Lord Jesus! AMEN!

Woman fell – Woman First Preached

Hanging out with my teen-aged daughter the other day, and she said something profound:

Dad, it was a woman that got deceived and fell, yet it was a woman that first preached Jesus risen from the dead.

I said: “WHAT?!?”

She said: “Yeah Dad, Eve got decieved by the devil, yet Mary of Magdelan was at the tomb after Jesus rose from the dead, and He said to Go to his disciples, and tell them that He had risen. That’s the gospel, Dad. God raised Jesus from the deadn and He is Lord, and we need to obey Him right?”

“Go on” I inquired.

She went on to say: “Oh the irony! Satan decieved Eve, and brought hell on earth. Now God in His sense of humor, has a broken woman preach the first gospel message that the earth had ever heard. It started with a woman, and it started again with a gospel woman.”

Seems clear to me that Holy Spirit has been speaking to my princess…

 

Jesus Lit A Match

For a year or so, Victory Christian Center held all night prayer meetings two times per month.
match

I attended these, seeking God Himself with everything in me.

During that time, I had a recurring dream that I didn’t understand.

It was a hot Oklahoma summer, before the time intercessors here had prayed in the rain and broken the drought.

In my dream, on a hot day, I saw a bush, totally withered, with the leaves still on it, all dry.

Jesus walked up to this bush, and in His hand He held a box of wooden matches.

He smiled really big, and lit a match and extended it towards the dead bush.

Then I would wake up smiling, not knowing what this was all about.

I had this dream repeatedly over a period of months, until finally, one night when I awoke I said: “Jesus? Why do I keep having this dream? Are You trying to speak to me?”
turn-aside

I thought about these verses from the life of Moses:

Ex 3:2 And the angel of the LORD appeared unto him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush: and he looked, and, behold, the bush burned with fire, and the bush was not consumed.
Ex 3:3 And Moses said, I will now turn aside, and see this great sight, why the bush is not burnt.

Immediately Holy Spirit spoke to me:

“America is in trouble. I have been preparing many of my servants in the business world for many decades, that I will now anoint and set apart as deliverers to this nation. I am lighting bushes on fire in their lives, to see if they will turn aside and seek me…”

Most of you know the rest of the story in my life, how I became one of those leaders – how I left the two companies we owned, and went out into the desert to learn the ways of native americans, and how God would desire to use them to unlock a great move of Holy Spirit across this land….

https://chrisaomministries.wordpress.com/2014/07/03/the-first-nations-mandate/

Personality, Prayer and Promises:

No automatic alt text available.

I have noticed folks that build ministries and businesses upon their great personality, and prayer. They are wonderful people, and they really go for it, and they pray God bless their plans, and because God is love, to a certain measure, He does.

Kenneth E Hagin wrote a great book, entitled ‘Plans, purposes and pursuits.’ where he speaks about the criticalness of discovering God’s plans for our lives. We can seek God’s blessing on our plans, and struggle with it, or we can fight until we discover the plan for which we are created, and walk in it, and His plans are already blessed.

Yet, as their organizations grow, they become unable to fulfill their promises, despite their good intentions. Why? Because they forgot to investigate fully God’s promises given to us in His Word, and accurately hear Holy Spirit for His sovereign plan.

So, the years go by, and there is little or no stability in their lives, hence instability in their families, ministries, and businesses…We must hear accurately, and build upon the Word of God!
rock-word

When we do, no matter what storms come, we with weather them all, and we won’t have to seek God’s blessing upon what we do, for His promises are already blessed. Inside of each promise is His power to fulfill that Word!

Let’s Pray:

‘Father, teach me Your Word! I every area of my life and calling that I am moving in my will, not yours, show me clearly, and give me courage to change. Show me how to apply your Word in each and every area of my life! In the areas where I am not rooted and grounded, show me, and give me the courage to face whatever painful truth I might need to, that I might find peace, stability, and grace, and the ability to impart it to others..In Your name I pray Lord Jesus, Amen”

Be Careful Little Eyes What You See!

Be Careful Little Eyes What You See!
Chris Karen Walsh's photo.
Ps 101:3 I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes: I hate the work of them that turn aside; it shall not cleave to me.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bt7ARx1y6Rc

We all know the children’s Sunday school song, but as adults, this is still good counsel.
Chris Karen Walsh's photo.
The three gates to the human spirit are the eye gate, ear gate, and the mouth gate.
body-soul-spirit
Keeping these three things clean and pure, will ensure that our feet only go good places, and that our hands are only found doing good things…

As a man thinks, so is he, and the Bible clearly tells us to guard our hearts and our thoughts:

Php 4:8 Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.

You are a person of honor, called to holiness, honor, and eternal rank and privilege.

Your mind is not a garbage can, so refuse to listen to, or watch filth…
head-trash
If you have been, and find yourself dirty, well God has provided a ‘mental shower’ to clean you up inside.

Eph 5:26 That he might sanctify and cleanse you with the washing of water by the word,
washed-clean
Get yourself an audio bible, and let the spoke Word of God, wash and cleanse you from the filth of this world.

For many years, I worked construction, mining, diving: hard physical labor, and I got dirty when I worked.

Nothing like a good meal and a hot shower to clean up after a day of hard work.

Same is true of ministry. Especially if you are a Christian counselor, wading through the muck and mire of human souls…Hearing their deepest pain and traumas, then bringing it to the cross in prayer, so they can go free….

Take time, to take a spiritual bath in the Word of God each day…

Let’s pray:
‘Father, help me to faithfully guard my thoughts, my eyes, my ears, my heart, and my words today, that I might stay clean spiritually, in Your name I pray Lord Jesus, Amen.”

Chris Karen Walsh's photo.