Different Options


Heaven is our model

Jesus lived by only doing what He saw His Father doing. Learning to recognize the Holy Spirit’s presence and following His lead enables us to do what Jesus did. And these works of God are not limited to church meetings. We must learn how to take this anointing to our schools, workplaces, and neighborhoods and expect similar results. Healing, deliverance, and spiritual breakthroughs become options we offer people wherever we go. Whatever the point of need a person has, God wants to move.

When you have an encounter with God, your hunger for the presence of the Lord increases and miracles are a by-product. God will meet you, change you in your encounter with Him, and as you change the impact on the world around you changes.

You are not just spectator

Encounters with God are for everyone and everywhere. He is looking for those who will listen and those He can trust. God looks at the heart and reveals Himself to those who love Him. There is no need to strive anymore. Working from God’s presence is more effective than working for His presence. Waiting patiently for God is never passive.

Signs and wonders are a practical means to display the love and power of God. The initial pressure isn’t to get people healed, but to display the love of God. And the love of God does not omit power encounters that bring healing and deliverance.

The best way to reach someone who doesn’t know Jesus is from a consistent lifestyle of love and power. Classical evangelism has become very clinical unfortunately it isn’t very effective. But the person who stays filled with the power of the Holy Spirit and loves people, will see a natural outflow of miracles and salvations.

God’s Will for All

God’s will to save?

We all know someone who needs Jesus. And no matter what spiritual state that person is in, we can be confident that it is God’s will to save them.

The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, NOT WILLING that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. (2 Peter 3:9)

To the same degree that salvation and eternal life are available to all men, physical healing is also available. Both salvation and healing are a part of the same redemption.

Jesus healed ALL who came to him

He never turned away a sick person, nor did He ever explain their sickness as a necessary part of their spiritual growth. He never made anyone sick, nor did He ever tell someone to wait for their healing until some condition was met.

How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing ALL that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him. (Acts 10:38)

James gives us further insight into healing…

Is ANY sick among you? Let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord:   And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he has committed sins, they shall be forgiven him. (James 5:14-15)

Will God honor His Word?

Earlier we read that God is “not slack concerning his promise”. One preacher put it simply when he said, “If God said it, that settles it.”

It doesn’t say ‘all things except some sicknesses.’ Anything that doesn’t reflect the nature of God Himself is something that you can be delivered from. Therefore we can have confidence when we stand on God’s word for anything, including healing.

How to DO Christianity

Is It God’s Will To Heal?
The will of God is simply this: “On earth as it is in Heaven.” And when we pray, “Your kingdom come, Your will be done,” we’re praying for God’s kingdom and will to be realized right here, right now. This is a life changing, paradigm-shattering way to “do” Christianity.

All the amazing things that are free to operate in Heaven—joy, peace, wisdom, health, wholeness, and every other promise of God—should be free to operate here on this planet, in your home, your church, your business, and your school. What is not free to operate in heaven—sickness, disease, spiritual bondage—should not be free to operate here.

Jesus is perfect theology
People often use the subtle language of “God allowed it” when referring to difficulties like sickness and disease. This kind of language sounds spiritually mature but is rooted in allowing our experience to define our theology, and explain what we don’t understand. If God “allowed” it then it can be said that he caused it. But this is not what the Bible teaches.

“God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him.”
(Acts 10:38, NKJV)

“For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil.”
(1 John 3:8, NKJV)

Jesus reveals God’s will. Jesus healed everyone he came in contact with. He also destroyed the devil’s unrestricted power to use sickness and disease as means of attack.

Almost fantasy
When we make this our mission, lives are set free, bodies are healed, darkness lifts from people’s minds, and the rule of the enemy is pushed back in every way imaginable. Businesses grow healthy, relationships flower again, people re-connect with their calling and purpose in life. Churches grow, and cities feel the effects of having God’s kingdom flourishing within them.

The understanding of God’s Kingdom being established right here, right now, will free up your life in ways you have never seen before. Things will begin to happen regularly that are so extraordinary it’s like a fantasy. But it’s not a made-up lifestyle; it’s the lifestyle for which you were made to live…and do.

Familiarity Breeds Contempt

The power of the offended mind

Jesus’ ministry was marked by significant miracles until came to His hometown of Nazareth. As was his custom he went to the synagogue. As He began to teach, the people were quite amazed at His wisdom. They were also very impressed with the healings they were seeing.

It seemed like God was really moving amongst them, until somebody yelled out,

“Hey, wait a minute! Isn’t this Joseph’s son? He grew up here! How can He do this stuff? And where did He get this wisdom?”

They were offended, but not in the typical sense. Their feelings weren’t hurt. They weren’t caught up in bitterness. They simply could not handle that someone familiar to them was operating in the anointing. Instead of being filled with faith and expectation, they became hardhearted and rejected Him.

This unresolved question became a strong enough mental stumbling block that it shut down Jesus’ anointing. He could do no miracles and teach with no power. This was a body blow to Jesus.

Stunned by his own neighbor’s and family’s lack of faith, Jesus responds, “A prophet is not without honor except in his own town, among his relatives and friends.”

Your Nazareth

You may not have grown up in Nazareth with Jesus, but you may have been around the same church, and/or around the same group of people for a while. When something new or different happens it’s difficult to receive or even recognize.

Not understanding is okay. Restricting your spiritual life to what you understand is not. This stubbornness of soul is the cornerstone of quenching the Holy Spirit. Such a controlling spirit is destructive to the development of deeper release of God’s power.

God responds to your faith but will not surrender to your demands for control. Encountering God requires a heart-felt embrace of what you do not understand, and possibly even from someone you ALREADY know.

Your heart is more clearly seen by what you’re willing to embrace without offense, than by your expression of faith only in what you already understand.

Extreme Boundaries

Faith explores the realms opened by the promises of God

Jesus reveals the nature and heart of God. Jesus is also the greatest revelation ever received by mankind of God’s promises. These promises are the playing field of our faith. But this playing field is only as big as our recognition of God’s goodness.

Too often we expect the worst, even though God has promised his best. This happens when we fail to make the connection of God’s goodness with his promises. This kind of thinking creates conflict, especially as we try to discern the source of a problem. Many even attribute the clear work of the devil to God Himself because they believe that God authors bad things for our good. In other words, the end justifies the means.

We would not accept this standard of logic in any other area of life. Yet it has become common in the theology of many because they do not understand the cornerstone of all theology—God is good.

Receive your assignment

When the issue of God’s goodness is settled, your assignment becomes much clearer. When you really believe that God is good, things will begin to open in your understanding that were previously out of reach.

Instead of living in reaction to problems or wondering who’s at fault, hope for breakthroughs and solutions begin to rise within you. You will live proactively, looking for places for God’s promises to be fulfilled as his goodness is revealed.

It is time to get the issue of God’s goodness settled and move out with hope. Out of this conviction you will look for chances to let your faith explore the boundaries of his goodness. These boundaries are much more extreme than you could possibly imagine.

Risk Management

Walking by faith takes us out of our comfort zone

I love security. I enjoy predictable things. I feel safe with my family and friends, at my home and job. But if I’m committed to following Jesus, I have to give him the right to disrupt my life with his agenda.

The goal of enjoying a happy, comfortable, predictable life is quite contrary to Jesus’ goal of using our lives to make an eternal difference in other people’s lives. In other words, Jesus is calling us to trust Him, and to put his kingdom and the people he cares about ahead of our own priorities…

  • Even if it is uncomfortable
  • Even if means plans have to be changed
  • Even if there are no “safety nets”
  • Even if it gets “messy” or “complicated” or “awkward”
“Faith is spelled R-I-S-K” (John Wimber)

God designs situations that make us feel unsure so that we have to look to him as our only source of guidance and strength.

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.” (Proverbs 3:5)

There comes a time in our relationship with God where he invites us to take more risks. These are moments of faith that require us to fully trust him with the possibility of losing something. Yet, through the noise of fear and doubt, God’s voice leads us and his power enables us and gives us far more than we risked losing.

God is relentlessly faithful and honors every risk we take out of obedience to him. And on the other side of the risk we become closer to God than we could have ever imagined.



The Love Language of Prophecy

Misconceptions about “prophecy”

Generally, the misconceptions about prophecy stem from misunderstanding the difference between prophecy in the Old Testament and the New Testament. New Testament prophecy is summed up with these simple words…

“The one who prophesies speaks to men for edification, and exhortation, and consolation.”
(1 Corinthians 14:3)

From this passage we understand that the main purpose of prophecy is a positive one. Edification means “to build up,” exhortation means “to stir up,” and consolation means “to lift up.”

God’s love language

One could say that the gifts of the Holy Spirit are the love languages of God. When we prophesy over someone, that person should feel loved on by God.

The primary purpose of prophecy is not to direct or correct people, but rather to encourage them. New Testament prophecy encourages and builds up people; it doesn’t condemn or speak negatively to them.

The goal of the gift of prophecy is to bring out the best in people! If we see negative things in someone’s life that we are ministering to, we are to ask the Holy Spirit to give us the answer to the problem that we discern. Then we prophesy the answer—not the problem.

For example, if we are ministering to someone and discern that they are struggling with a specific sin, a prophetic word should call them to higher ground: “God is calling you to a new level of purity and holiness.” In this way, we have prophesied the solution without speaking about the problem. This releases grace to break the bondage of the specific sin in their lives!

Someone needs you

There are many people who are ready to give up. They feel hopeless. They feel unworthy. Demonic attacks bombard them. Confusing circumstance surround them. But a prophetic word spoken in season gives life to their souls.

Any follower of Jesus who has been baptized in the Holy Spirit can minister a prophetic word.

“For you can all prophesy one by one, so that all may learn and all may be exhorted.” (1 Corinthians 14:31)

God can speak through you something that helps a person learn something vital, while stirring them up. This is the life-saving love language of prophecy.

Why God?

Great loss

One of the most painful things I face as a Pastor is when people in our church go through difficult circumstances. A few years ago I received news that one of the dearest brothers in our church has suffered a severe heart attack and passed away. He was only 52 years old, and left his wife and two college-aged daughters.

My heart broke for the family, and for our church. We had truly suffered a great loss.

A friend you can trust

We live in a day and age that offers more assistance and resources then ever before. Advances in technology and communication give people instant access to information. Yet, in the final analysis there are still many situations which are beyond explanation. There are no quick and easy answers.

Our human nature wants to ask God, “Why did this happen?” We can even grow resentful and bitter towards God, after all, “How could a loving God allow this to happen?”

I do not claim to have a complete answer to these questions, nor would I trust anyone who did, but I read something that helped. It’s a quote of Martin Luther’s from a time when he faced immeasurable difficulties and attack. His words echoed in my heart and gave me strength, I hope they do yours as well…

I know not the way I am going,
But well do I know my Guide;
With a childlike trust I give my hand,
To the mighty Friend by my side.




Putting the Pieces Together

Jigsaw puzzle of life

You have hopes and dreams that shape the vision for your life. You also have detours and disappointments in your life that defy that vision. You work hard to wrap your mind around the information you have, but the brokenness of unfulfilled dreams is like a mental jigsaw puzzle.

You place the pieces the way you think they should fit. Even if the pieces don’t fit, you try to make them fit, or look for another piece that will. You hope the puzzle will come together, but it seems to continue in cycle of brokenness.

God operates in wholeness

The wholeness that God creates is actually from the broken pieces in you life. He takes the pieces of your life that seemed pointless, confusing, and even hurtful, and makes something whole out of them.

So we are convinced that every detail of our lives is continually woven together to fit into God’s perfect plan of bringing good into our lives. (Romans 8:28, TPT)

Perhaps you have become frustrated with your lack of understanding. You have attempted several times to receive some kind of clarification. You read the Bible, but the information also seems like a jigsaw puzzle that you have a difficult time putting the pieces together.

The secret is simple: ask the Holy Spirit to show you

Information is the depositing of facts into your mind. Revelation is the impartation of truth into your spirit. Information informs. Revelation transforms. The Holy Spirit doesn’t just give you information; He gives revelation and leads you into all truth.

This is why God wants you to trust Him. You may not think He really knows your desires, but this is far from the truth! He knows what you want and like better than you do—He created you. And He knows what you need to fulfill the very reason He created you for. He will bring this kind of wholeness to your life by putting all the pieces together!

Messy, But Awesome

The presence of God

David said that in God’s presence is the fullness of joy. As we draw near to God, he draws near us. We begin to sense his nearness and our hearts begin to overflow. We feel the warmth of his embrace and the hope of his power.

Jesus IS our Emanuel, which means “God with us.” He is the One who became flesh and made His dwelling among us, and we now find the joy that sustains, empowers, and brings fresh hope for breakthrough.

But breakthroughs are not always kumbaya moments.

Things could get messy

Encountering the presence of God holds the potential of life-changing results. It also holds the potential of life-shaking events.

God warned Moses that no one could see God and live. When Solomon dedicated the first temple, God’s presence came in so strong that no one could stand. We are told that just the name of Jesus demands every knee (on earth and under it) to bow.

“The mountains melt like wax before the Lord.” (Psalm 97:5 (NLT)

While certainly there are tender moments in God’s presence, there are also moments of complete destruction, where mountains of demon oppression are flattened. Where fear, hopelessness, anger, and anything else that tries to stand in the way of what God has for his people melts like wax. That’s messy, but awesome!