Archive for October, 2011

Transition Vision

"Sometimes transition looks like chaos" - Market place in Webuye

 The first day in Uganda was a day of transition. A new nation, a fresh Word from God and a mountain of unknown sights were accompanied by a large storm. The Kenyan Pastors came to Ron with huge smiles, calling him “Pastor Wafula”.  They were remembering the last trip to Kenya in May when it would rain all day and then stop for the evening crusades. At that time, pastors nicknamed Ron - “Pastor Wafula”. The name Wafula means “one who is born in the rainy season”.   

Seasons require revelatory vision… 

When you have a revelation that comes from your history with God, vision is transformed and Godly perception kicks in. From the very beginning this trip seemed different. Our journeys have been fruitful experiences with huge impact for all involved. That being said, things were different this time around. It required us to see differently. 

Beyond the Natural Limitations:

First of all, Ron had originally set this trip up for the end of August and then our travel agent and Pastor Wycliffe encouraged Ron to set it back about a month. That seemed good to us in that we believed it would give us more opportunity to raise funds. Little did we know it would require us to see more than just natural reality. We would need to come into a revelation of God’s timing far outweighing our schedules. God’s timing is based on opportune time and must be clicked into the divine ordering of His plans. Each step that the righteous takes is ordered by the Lord according to the psalmist (Ps 37:23). We needed that and appreciated it when it was made visible to us.

Beyond the Personal Apprehensions: 

Ron would be in Africa well over 3 weeks this time, compared to no more than a couple weeks in other trips. A unique challenge to the family certainly, but more specifically to me as the one who would carry most of the responsibility at home. What God would show me seemed incredible. He showed me through my sons a line of defense that I had never seen before. The second day after Ron’s departure, the car broke down. While we were in the service station to have it fixed, the mechanic spoke to me and out of the corner of my eye I could see my three tall, strapping boys surround me with their “fathering’ presence. They didn’t even know they were doing it, but it spoke to me of how God would surround Jerusalem with His fathering love like the mountains surround that city (Ps 125:2).  I needed that revelation.

Beyond the Spiritual Challenges:

Perhaps the biggest challenge was that Ron was ”hearing” in his spirit that this trip would be accompanied by more spiritual warfare than any prior trip. Yea, just what I wanted to hear. Yet, nothing was beyond God’s power to overcome. I found myself in agreement with God’s purposes even in the midst of uncomfortable circumstances.

Sometimes hearing confuses our seeing.

When Ron shared with me that he was doing one of his messages out of Deuteronomy 11:11, my thoughts immediately went to the Biblical meaning of the number 11. The Hebrew meaning is transition, shift or chaos. My thoughts were… OK God, I’m ready to see what You have for me in this season of transition. It sometimes feels like I’ve had just about as much transition as I need in life, but this time will be significant! I was about to see transition as a season of mental and spiritual alignment that would increase my awareness of His Presence everyday!

God’s up to Something: 

I love the thought that God is shaping our future for greater impact, but I would like for it to happen without some of the drama. I have discovered however, that when we see the momentum of spiritual activity properly, it becomes a time that makes the adventure worth the journey. The wonderful truth is that when I stay in alignment with God’s heart, we see all He is doing to advance His Kingdom.  

This made me look up the number “12″, which means completeness, order or government. God has been setting a pathway for His purposes to be seen in my life through my spiritual alignment. The government of Heaven will find my heart more welcoming at His appointed seasons.

For unto us a Child is born, Unto us a Son is given; And the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called: Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of His government and peace there shall be no end, Upon the throne of David, and over His kingdom, to order it and to establish it with judgment and with justice from that time forward, even forever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this. (Isaiah 9:6-7)

    Being in the midst of transition is always a challenge, yet when we align our vision with God’s zeal – He is able to turn every season into something beautiful.

The Children’s Bread

 …a woman whose little daughter was possessed by an impure spirit came and fell at His (Jesus) feet. The woman was a Greek, born in Syrian Phoenicia. She begged Jesus to drive the demon out of her daughter.
“First let the children eat all they want,” He told her, “for it is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to the dogs.”
“Lord,” she replied, “even the dogs under the table eat the children’s crumbs.”
Then He told her, “For such a reply, you may go; the demon has left your daughter.” She went home and found her child lying on the bed, and the demon gone. (Mark 7:25-30)

In July 2011 she was not expected to live!

Here is a wonderful account of faith in action, desperate and unrelenting. Did you catch what Jesus said about freedom from demons? He referred to spiritual freedom as the “children’s bread”. In other words, deliverance is the rightful, normal, expected substance of the Children of God. It’s their inheritance!

Deliverance is our Inheritance:

I have found that many Christians are really not sure if deliverance belongs to them through God’s redemptive plan of salvation. This uncertainty is always an open door for the enemy to sow confusion. Its a breeding ground for fear, doubt and unbelief. As believers, we need to have our feet planted upon solid ground, knowing with certainty all that belongs to us, so that we can apply the Word of God in any given situation and receive the promised benefit.

The Promise is for the Child of God:

Where do you stand? Are you a Child of God? Have you asked Jesus to become Lord of your life? If you answered yes, then the deliverance you need is yours today… right now, in this very moment. Just as it was then, it is still the Children’s bread today.

Biblical Faith: 

True Bible faith can only act where the will of God is known. Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God (Rom 10:17). That’s why we have the Bible, so we can know His will in written form and act upon it daily for the sustaining Bread of Life. Jesus makes this truth very clear when He stood before Satan and said “It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.” (Mt 4:4) Drawing upon what has been written and living by what we know to be the Will of God is the pattern of faith.

Revelation Activates Faith:

This woman had a revelation that Jesus was the Messiah, that He was not only able to deliver, but that He was willing to do so right then. Based on that understanding, she was not going to let Jesus pass her by. She had bold faith that was based upon knowledge and she acted on it. In one sense she was saying – “I know the truth and I will not be denied!” Her desperation was turned into boldness simply because she had a revelation.

Hesitation Exposes:

Most people would have looked at their own inadequacy, their own unrighteousness, their own shortcomings and would have been stopped right there – but not her. She was not stopped by her lack, instead she was moved by His supply. She got her eyes off of herself and onto the Author of Life!

If it matters to us… It matters to God!

There’s no mistaking the fact that it was her faith that stopped Jesus in His tracks. It was her faith that pulled Him into her desperate situation. Faith that knew of God’s will to deliver, would call her to the feet of Jesus. Faith is what makes the heart posture itself against impossible odds and dare to believe in the power of “crumbs”. Faith makes all the difference and moves a person past the obstacles. She may have been a “little dog” in the eyes of the world, but she understood herself to be in line for God’s love to touch her daughter. If it matters to us, it matters to God… Its faith that makes this true!

Taste and See

Every journey offers a process of tasting new things. 

A few days ago I was watching a conference called ”Piercing the Darkness” and one of my favorite speakers – Graham Cooke was teaching. Something He said struck me as very important to my spiritual journey.

“You know what a taste is? It’s a little sample of the whole buffet to come!”

I love the thought of tasting what God has given in the Heavenly Realms -“the whole buffet to come”.  The things that are being experienced in Kenya and Uganda are just a small taste of what God desires to do. The experiences with my Heavenly Father are just a sample of the buffet to come and not just in Heaven, but also here on earth! 

Little boys love sugar cane in Kenya!

Ron has sampled many dishes while in Africa… ugali, flying ants (that’s a great story), chipate’ and sugar cane, just to mention a few. While all of those experiences of tasting a new culture are fun and delicious, they are not the whole buffet. And I’m not sure the texture of the flying ants would pass for “good”. Yet I can testify that sampling the Lord’s goodness far outweighs anything we could physically taste. 

God is Good!

One taste of His Glory, His Presence, His healing touch or His still small voice only wets our appetite for more… of Him!  This is true, no matter what continent you are on or culture you are experiencing. Once you have had a real taste of His goodness, it ruins you for anything this world can offer.

God is Good – all the time?

There are experiences that ruin our taste buds. Have you ever taken a sip of really hot coffee or tea and burned your tongue? You know how damaged taste buds can make it hard to enjoy food for a little while. I find that there are experiences in life that damage our ability to taste and see God’s goodness all of the time. God has not changed, but our perceptions of our journey certainly can!

There are experiences in life that can ruin our spiritual “taste buds” for Kingdom priorities. 

When we allow anger, bitterness or disappointment to come in and literally “burn” the goodness from our spiritual journey, we find ourselves in a tough place. When this happens it’s hard to “taste and see” the Lord’s goodness in the midst of hurt feelings. We do not obey God willingly and often feel taken advantage of when we risk for the sake of God’s love. If you are in this place, ask God to forgive you and restore your ”seeing”, so that you begin again “tasting and seeing” the truth.

GOD IS GOOD – ALL THE TIME!

Here is a great testimony:

Hello Pastor Ron,
Greetings in the name of Jesus Christ the King of Kings.
There is real fire arising in the land of Kenya. We have experienced the fire of God at work in our lives and the lives of the people, pastors and leaders in the Church of Kenya. Your timely words have made us marvel at what the Lord has in store for us. The power of God to heal, deliver and give hope to people is testified to date. I have received many testimonies from people about what the Lord did in their lives through your ministry. Another great miracle is the high level of conviction in the hearts of the people in response to the message, it is still evident to date. People’s hearts are encouraged. Many people have begun to act on the messages. Even in your absence they are still responding. They are rising to do the work of the Lord, because you ministered to the real hearts and lives of people. I have personally seen God express His goodness to us through your ministry, because of the time spent in Webuye. It was like a great call to awareness, the work of God is waiting and we have to arise and do it. Many times I have heard one statement from the pastors and leaders and it is… “Pastor Ron has greatly challenged me!”

As things are - you haven’t finished with Kenya yet. It is the beginning of your ministry here and you are preparing the ground. We are making our hearts ready for the work of real ministry. A door is wide open and you are very much needed Pastor Ron! The time has come and after the appetizer, real food is needed. People have tasted and they say it is good and now they are ready to eat. Welcome again my friend…

BISHOP PHILIP NYONGESA LUSWETI

The Sound of Unity

   In each of the regions that Pastor Ron ministered, he would take one session, usually on the last day, and speak of unity between the Pastors.  The challenge was that they would put aside their doctrinal differences and focus on establishing God’s Kingdom in Kenya and Uganda.  Ron was firm but loving in stating that to begin an Apostolic Training Center, the foundation would need to be based on unity. Trust requires that everyone agree to work together towards the same goal… establishing the Kingdom of God in Kenya and Uganda.

  The following is from Sister Betty Grace Kirunda of Uganda:

   We want to hear more and more of his teachings.  He taught the pastors and leaders how to enter into the glory of God and take your possession; that was wonderful and every pastor is ringing to say their prayer life has changed in these few days and they have started to experience love and joy before the Lord.  Some have testified that they have been holding their fellow pastors with bitterness at heart for a long time but now they have entered the time of release and they are getting set free day by day.  In the meeting, on the last day, there were so many people who got delivered and we are still getting more and more testimonies.  I will continue to send them to you as they ring me. God bless you.

Hand in Hand

This is a testimony from the first meetings in Eldoret:

    I see this man with a great burden for equipping the saints and pastors, for the work of ministry. He closed the meetings with tears and crying… requesting the pastors to reach out for the lost!! He spoke about apostolic works and the glory of the lord!! The place was packed with all pastors in the city,…regardless of their denominations and churches, it was time of unity psalm 133 and fellowship, a time to come together, a great time to forgive each other, it was time to commune together under the anointing of the Holy Ghost!! Today we set our many church doctrines aside, and we hold one another’s hand for prayers under the glory of the lord!!!

From Pastor Allan Mugoha….

     We have just ended a powerful revival meeting which was full of God’s Glory, healing and power. Pastors have just left while expecting more. They said “Going you may go- but coming back is a must!” For sure Kenya pastors need such teaching and training to make them effective in ministry work. Pastor Ron finished by praying for the pastors and church leaders.

Praising God for all He has done and waiting to see what He is up to next!

The Sound of Sacrifice

 

   There are 2 names that stand out a bit on this trip as men who are willing to sacrifice for the Kingdom of God.

   The first is Pastor Chriss Barassa in Eldoret, Kenya.  Ron e-mailed back and forth a bit with Pastor Chriss before arriving in Eldoret.  Then they met face to face at Pastor Hesborne’s church (see The Journey Begins with the Testimony).  Pastor Chriss shared with Ron that he was offered the use of a vehicle to drive Ron back and forth from his lodgings to the meetings. The owner of the vehicle agreed that Pastor Chriss would drive Ron where he needed to go only asking Ron to pay for gas .  This was a huge blessing!  In Kenya you usually hire both a driver and a car (rather than renting a vehicle) and the cost can be up to $100 a day.  Ron quickly accepted Pastor Chriss’s offer. 

   After the meetings in Eldoret and to begin the journey to Uganda  Ron realized that the vehicle he was planning to use would not fit all of the Pastors going, and might not make it to Uganda.  So Ron asked Pastor Chriss to drive him and the other Pastors to Uganda in the vehicle they had been using in Eldoret.   Pastor Chriss stepped up to the plate,  left his family and church for 8 days, to be Ron’s right hand man.

On the road to Broderick Falls near Webuye

    The second is Pastor Martin Shikuku.  Pastor Martin was the owner of the vehicle that Ron and Pastor Chriss borrowed.  After realizing the vehicle they were planning on using was not going to work, they contacted Pastor Martin to see if they could use his vehicle to travel the 5 hours to Uganda.  Pastor Martin quickly agreed and sent Pastor Chriss and Ron to Uganda for the next week using his vehicle to expand the Kingdom.  What none of us realized is that Pastor Martin had his own speaking engagements that he had committed to, and he made other travel arrangements just to bless Ron.

   In his own words…….

Greetings my brother and fellow servant of God,Pastor Ron,
     You have been in my personal,family and church prayers ever since we left each other and walking in God’s glory. I know that you are in Bugiri today for your Ugandan Conferences and we thank God all together that Christ the hope of glory has been proclaimed. I went to Mombasa and came back safely,preached in my church on Sunday morning and i thank God as well.It has not been easy for me here on the other hand since i was not prepared but the Lord has been helping me to walk where i can,use public means where it has to and hiring a taxi where needed like to the church with my family on Sunday and yesterday to Cheptiret area(45 minutes drive from Eldoret town towards Nairobi road) for a planning meeting but all has been well through His grace.
     Otherwise,may the Almighty God bless you and help you as you plan to travel back tomorrow.Be assured of my prayers and the revival Hut Ministries always from now hence forth.

 God bless you. In Christ’s love and service,
Pastor Martin and Anne Shikuku

    I reminds me of what King David said to Araunah…… 

 I will not sacrifice to the LORD my God burnt offerings that cost me nothing  2 Samuel 24:24

    Sharing his vehicle did cost Pastor Martin something.  It cost him time, he had to make other arrangements for his own travel, and it cost him financially.  The vehicle made the trip to Uganda, but the roads were very hard on it and repairs will need to be made.  After sending Pastor Martin assurance through e-mail that Ron and I would help in any way we could to fix the vehicle Pastor Martin responded

 I know very well that He is the Lord who blessed me with the van to SERVE. It is not that iam worthy at all except Christ in me. It is very true that we had a very hurried,divine and challenging decision to make with my wife Anne when we found Pastor,my brother Ron in his hard situation. I was to leave for a mission the following day and all was set for my wife and my children when I am  not there. We chose to give in to give in to His will. We were from right there to put in place the taxi to assist where needed and at times to walk.So,we were to put them before the Lord all through in prayers that they will go and come back safely. I could not at all even share the story to my congrgation but to join us in prayers in all.
    The van came back truly in bad condition and it is still in the garage now but iam assured that all will be well.

“Sounds” like sacrifice to me!

Archives