Archive for September, 2012

Were You Called to Preach?

September 23, 2012

As I was talking with some friends, we began talking about people who were pastors or ministers or leaders in churches or ministries. And I noticed that there are two kinds of preachers or ministers. Those that were called and ordained by God and those were called but ordained by man. Let me explain:

Those that are called by God will be equipped to carry out that call on their life. Those who have a desire, but would go the route of attending school and ordination by man.

It is not a bad thing to go to school… but what is the motive and who is leading us? I noticed that those wanting to be a pastor or minister may never really been called to that position, but the family expected them to walk in their father’s shoes, so they go out and earn it. Others saw “glory” in it and wanted to have it, just like Simon:

Acts 8:18-24  And when Simon saw that through laying on of the apostles’ hands the Holy Ghost was given, he offered them money,19 Saying, Give me also this power, that on whomsoever I lay hands, he may receive the Holy Ghost.20 But Peter said unto him, Thy money perish with thee, because thou hast thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money.21 Thou hast neither part nor lot in this matter: for thy heart is not right in the sight of God.22 Repent therefore of this thy wickedness, and pray God, if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee.23 For I perceive that thou art in the gall of bitterness, and in the bond of iniquity.24 Then answered Simon, and said, Pray ye to the Lord for me, that none of these things which ye have spoken come upon me.

This passage is full of truths for today. People see the amazing things going on and want to learn to do it too. But if the Lord hasn’t given you that gift, you cannot muster it up in some school, otherwise, it comes from man. Many are attending these kinds of schools of prophecy, or healings, or whatever, so they can buy their anointing in a given area. I know of these schools that are charging hundreds if not thousands of dollars to achieve what Simon wanted! And what does this passage continue to say? Your heart is not right with God, repent of this wickedness. And let me go on further to ask this question. If you are in a ministry or leading a church, do you have struggles in the area of bitterness and secret sin? That is the fruit of this kind of mindset and heart. Choose to repent and make some changes today!

Some get into ministry because they want to feel needed, others to be looked up to, and others who just want to be seen. But then these pastors and ministers are the ones who can actually hurt the sheep and cause people to look down on churches and Christianity as a whole.

I realized that when someone comes to me and asks: How did you start your ministry? My question in response to this question before answering is, “Why do you want to know?” If they want to know so they can do it, then I’ll encourage them to seek the Lord because it could be they just want to “do” it, and not really been called to “do” it. Because if God calls us, He will equip us.

The reason I know this is that when I started Life Application Ministries in 1996, I was sitting at my computer. I had not attended any college, barely finished High School with a GED, and yet the ministry was birthed. God gave me a simple message of Love and forgiveness, and it hasn’t changed since that time. And that message keeps freeing people every day. I know that I was called and anointed by God, not called by man nor anointed by man. Because He equipped me to preach the good news, set captives free, minister to the broken hearted, cast out devils, heal the sick, and more. Because HE is doing it through me. Because HE called me. I don’t have some giant ministry or a huge following, but those that I get an opportunity to meet and to share my heart with are being impacted for the Kingdom.

So here is a truth… we are all ordained by God because we are His. But many seek out man’s ways to fulfll this call instead of seeking God. They assume they have to go to college and get a degree and pastor a church or ministry. This is not true. Because you become a minister in your sphere of influence. You could be a mom at home with kids, you could be a business man, that is your mission field.

Let me share a few scriptures:

Acts 20:28 Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.

Your anointing to preach or minister has been paid for by Jesus’ blood and by the power of the Holy Ghost, that is your credentials! That is all you  need. People get in trouble when they think they are supposed to start a church or ministry, what this is saying is that we are ALL to watch and feed the church! Whether you are in a church or leading a church, we are all called. It’s not the pastor’s job to do all this. It’s who we are wherever we go.

Let’s look at the 12 disciples. When Judas was eliminated, the 11 decided to put it upon themselves to cast lots for a replacement for Judas. And of course, we never hear of that person again. See, man, not God, called that person.

Then Sara and Abraham…  They were promised a child… but Sara couldn’t wait any longer and decided to go out on her own and have her handmaiden have a child for her. How many of you see something wrong with this picture? And from then on, the world has been in chaos from these two children, all because of man.. or in this case woman… interfered and tried to complete what only God was to complete.

I’m only saying these things because some of you want out of the ministry, you even never wanted to do it in the first place. Others want the ministry, and trying to purchase it. We all need to stop, listen to the motives of our heart, and take it to the Lord. We all have one life to live, and God wants us to  live it fully and unto Him. But if we are living a lie, or discontented, or struggling all the time… it could be you need to make some changes. Now, I’m not talking about the every day things like walking by faith and trusting God, you know what I am getting at.

Because there are some of you who have been called, yet you aren’t happy. It could be that how you began, you have swayed from that initial calling. Some churches are using gimmicks, and so forth, to get people to come to church. That is not good, if that’s all you rely on. Because scriptures say that God adds to the church daily, not man. We do our part by sharing our heart and God’s love, and people will come. I know of a pastor who leads a small church, and his desire (and still) was to be a dentist. I said, “Then be a dentist.” But he feels he cannot because he is following the footsteps of his father and grandfather. How sad I felt for him… though he is doing good, he’s not doing his best… ‘Cause as a Christian Dentist, he could have ministered to clients one on one, and could have reached thousands…

I often thought I needed to do more than what I teach. Like put together a school of learning, or whatever. And I realized that I’ll be swaying from the original call on my life. To teach love and forgiveness freely. Many have made their ministries a business. I almost went that way too, but God pulled me back to my first love each and every time I would start to go down another path. I would think, “I need to be doing more” or “I need to earn more money” and the Lord would say, “You are doing enough.” He would expose the motive of my heart, and I would see the light and truth of His call on my life and choose to return. When we have a spirit of man pleasing… we will tend to go after everything out there… but when we choose to please God… The sky isn’t even the limit. And  in both scenarios, He will bring things to us out of the motive of our heart, some 30, 40, 50 and 60 fold.

I asked the Lord about churches that haven’t grown…He said, “I cannot trust them with more sheep than they have… and this church is really for them to grow.” I’ve known of these churches because I end up ministering to the sheep later when they have been hurt, cut off and wounded by the leadership. Sometimes they are small just for the one in leadership to grow!

I had asked the Lord about my ministry. It’s not big either, so I had to look in the mirror and asked that question. Have you really called me or is this just for you to use to change me? Well, in my case, it’s both. Because the ministry was birthed out of my need to be healed. Then when I got healed, I began sharing with others my testimony and began seeing others healed and changed too. I remember not long ago I asked the Lord, “I think I’m done now…” He said, “You are just starting… those past 20 years was to prepare you.”  Oh…..  and since that time the doors have flung open for me to do conferences and seminars more than I have ever done before that time!

I like the saying: Everything will work out in the end… and if it hasn’t worked out yet, it’s not the end.

Sometimes things are dragging out because we are prolonging the end because we aren’t being true to our own heart. Let’s all choose to stop and meditate with our own hearts upon our own bed and see what God has truly called us to, and choose to please only Him, no matter the cost. (Psalm 4:4)

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Have words defiled us and made us sick?

September 11, 2012

I have been having one injury happen to me after the other. It’s been from a sprang ankle, to wrist pain, some sort of legion on my hand, headaches, relationship issues, and so on. I feel like Job…  where he said to God, “Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him.” Because even in the midst of all this, I’m pressing on, preparing meetings and traveling to conferences I’m hosting.

I shared this with a dear friend of mine and she said, “I feel led for you to pray that every idol word that rises up against you for you to condemn it. Cast off that spirit of infirmity, it’s a lie you didn’t do anything wrong.  I believe this is Gods truth for you.” Isn’t it awesome to have friends who really care to share the truth? And I went to bed. This morning I woke up and began to pray, “Father,I ask you to remove any defilement that was placed upon me whether I perpetrated it, or not, whether it is true or not, I ask you to remove it all. And I ask that any words that I have spoke against another out of joking, or truth, judgment, or whatever reason, that they are removed from them too.”

As I pondered on this prayer, faces flooded my mind. Because I know that every person that came to mind has not always had a kind word to say about me. I was totally surprised by the faces that came up too! People that were close to me, people who didn’t know me, etc. The fact is, we are constantly being judged… and that judgment, no matter how small or fleeting, is still a defilement. Anything the enemy can use to throw darts at our lives is a defilement, whether we know it or not.

Matthew 12:36 “But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment.” This says that every idle word will be accounted for and judged in that last day. I have some cleaning up to do in my own spirit and mind and heart. I don’t want to be judged by the Lord by the words I’ve spoken in haste, anger or fear. So this morning, I repented first for any defilement that I have caused any one. Some people I know of, others I do not. But those that I do know of, I am going to make right. And then forgave everyone who put any defilement upon me, face after face came up, some I was surprised to see! But the Lord said that every word spoken in secret will be heard on the housetops! (Luke 12:3 “Therefore whatsoever ye have spoken in darkness shall be heard in the light; and that which ye have spoken in the ear in closets shall be proclaimed upon the housetops.” Eventually, the truth will be known about everything!!! Wow…. (Matthew 10:26 Fear them not therefore: for there is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed; and hid, that shall not be known.)

When we choose to  walk in truth, we are living IN righteousness. Proverbs 12:17 “He that speaketh truth shews forth righteousness: but a false witness deceit (lies)”. So any words that we have spoken about anyone that is not good is deceit and we are not working righteousness. Perhaps we are the ones preventing good things from happening to us? Perhaps these injuries of mine, or your sicknesses are a result of our tongue or other’s tongues against us?. Wow…  It reminds me of what Ricky Ricardo says on I love Lucy says, “lucy….. you got some ‘splainin’ to do.”

So this morning, I began to forgive every face that came up that may have spoken defilement (deceit, lies, negativity) on my life, whether warranted or not. And I prayed, “Father forgive them for they know not what they do. And forgive me for perpetrating defilement on others. Cleanse me Lord, and wash me whiter than snow. This morning your mercies are new every morning. Restore Father, my heart, and those who my words have hurt. Thank you for showing me the light. Because I have been in a dark hole and didn’t even know it until I began coming out from underneath all these words. Thank you for restoring me to the joy of my salvation, through your truth.”

This simple prayer has not only caused the defilement to fall from my heart, which I believe will also impact all those things that have been happening to me, but has also opened other areas of my heart I hadn’t been able to see! And, until I was able to SEE these things, I wouldn’t be able to receive the following scripture without feeling condemned.

1 John 1:6 “If we say that we have fellowship with God, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth:” I wouldn’t have seen this passage as a word of HOPE, I would have seen it as a condemnation. But because of what the Lord has done this morning in my heart, I was able to rejoice in this passage, and repent where I needed, and forgive where I needed.  We have to face ourselves and “see” what we are really doing in this life of ours. Are we even defiling ourselves? This passage is saying that if you believe you love the Lord God, and yet FEEL like you are in a dark hole, stuck, complacent, bored, etc., it means that we are living a lie. Ouch again.

As the Lord was speaking to me this morning through this (which by the way took place in a matter of minutes!!) I realized I had “settled.” I’m sure some of you know exactly what I’m talking about. Let’s say that we have been married for over 20 years, and the way things are now are how they are, not expecting anything new, simply comfortable, unexcited, stable, and I hate to say it, but almost boring! Of course, I couldn’t say that until I got out from under some of the defilement because I couldn’t see it or how far I had sunk!! I didn’t realize I was in a dark hole! Ouch!

Words are containers for life or death… That’s what my Bible says anyway… Proverbs 18:21 Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.

So this morning, after the light shone onto the darkness and covered those deep places in my heart, I emerged! Yes, that quickly too. I made some decisions this morning. Because with this heart-change comes decision making. Am I going to choose to be the same….  or am I going to live this life God has given me to the fullest? Am I going to choose to be happy, filled with joy, or am I going to continue to live in a “doomsday” mentality with the rest of the world. We are not OF this world. Our home is not of this kingdom. We are residents of another kingdom, that is filled with joy, peace, mercy, truth, happiness, and love. Folks, where is our allegiance? What kingdom are you living in? Scriptures say that we are ambassadors for Christ. If that is true, then that means our citizenship is not from this world. That means we run by another set of rules, not the constraints of this world. Psalm 119:142 Thy righteousness is an everlasting righteousness, and thy law is the truth.” There is NO law against truth people. When we stay in truth, we work righteousness, and pleasing our Father in Heaven. 2 John 1:4 “I rejoiced greatly that I found of thy children walking in truth, as we have received a commandment from the Father.”

Boy, I am on a roll this morning.. it’s like a flood gate opened and there’s not stopping it!  I am EXCITED what is going to happen today…  with this newness of heart, cleansing of those hidden things, forgiving others, and last but not least, releasing my husband in being responsible for my happiness! Yikes!

Along with all this revelation, I realized that I had put the responsibility of my happiness on my husband. I repented of that this morning as well. And I asked for the Lord to remove the same expectations from my husband towards me. We tend to do that if we aren’t careful, and that is why we sometimes find ourselves in a hole, and almost un-moveable, frozen in time. My happiness and joy isn’t from what he says to me or what he doesn’t say to me (again words), but what God says to me and about me. That is where my true happiness is to resonate from. But… because we are human, we have to be reminded from time to time not to rely on others for our happiness because they are fighting for the same things you desire too! Wow… what a breath of fresh air today…  stay tuned…. and it’s not even 8:00 AM!

Final note: I am so delighted to talk to you as my dear friends in the Lord, and to share my journey with you. I hear this phrase that I am going to use in my ministry that says, “This is my journey turned into a ministry to help others in need.” I hope that this blog helped someone today…  because if we can get a hold of this revelation, our life and world can be restored.

2 Chronicles 7:14 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

I believe what I’m sharing with you is what this passage is all about. If we call ourselves Christians, then we have to stop all the lies, deceit, negative talk, fear, and walk in the light and in the truth in all things, THEN…. He will heal our land….