Posts Tagged ‘testimony’

Your Spiritual Capacity

“Now concerning spiritual gifts, or concerning operations of the spirit, brothers, I would not have you to be ignorant.” (1 Cor. 12:1)

Designed for Flow:

You are designed to be a spiritual man or woman. God wants you to operate in the supernatural everyday! Its why He has given us the Holy Spirit.

The Apostle Paul is writing to the Church… Notice the first thing: God wants you to move in the supernatural! You are designed to be a supernatural being. You are a spirit, living inside a body. With your body you can communicate with the natural or external world… with your spirit you can communicate from the realm of God’s resources, power and authorization. This dimension is the realm of the spirit… often we call it the “spiritual realm”. You and I are designed to flow and access all that God has made available through the personal anointing of the Holy Spirit upon our lives. Its important to understand the simple principle that you don’t have to become a spiritual person – you already are spiritual!

You already have a spirit dimension to you.

Spiritual Senses:

Your natural body has five senses: you can see, hear, taste, touch and smell. Your spirit man also has spiritual senses. With your physical senses you can interact with the physical world. You receive signals in your natural body… and from those senses you can begin to identify certain things. It’s the same in your spirit; but many people haven’t developed their spiritual capacity. You can develop your spiritual senses just as clearly as you can develop your natural senses. It comes by training yourself in the disciplines of use, practice and consistent discernment. Faith is always the key to opening your spiritual senses and persistent use will enlarge your spiritual effectiveness.

  • Your ability to see God spiritually and identify the purposes of the Holy Spirit is directly connected to your hunger for revelation and activation… like speaking the Word of God or laying hands upon the oppressed, sick and broken lives around you.
  • Your ability to hear the voice of the Holy Spirit is tied directly to your hearing of the Word of God… the voice of your Shepherd.
  • Your ability to taste of the goodness of the Father is connected to your willingness to rest in His Presence and wait upon Him to meet your needs with His love and compassion.
  • Your ability to feel or grow in your knowledge of the Holy Spirit’s touch is connected to meditating upon His Person, Promises and Emotions.
  • Your ability to experience the sensation of smelling the fragrances of heaven is tied to atmospheres of worship and thanksgiving.

“Now the manifestation of the spirit is given to each one for the profit of all!” (1 Cor. 12:7)

The Holy Spirit has expression and communication that benefits everyone who is willing to grow and develop their spiritual senses. Its part of our discipleship goal as God’s Child. Notice the word ‘manifestation’, it means: something that is visible, tangible… that people can see, feel and connect with. He’s saying: God wants to operate through you, in a way that’s tangible, that people can experience Him. Don’t underestimate what God can do through you.

Recent Testimony:

I prophesied over someone the other day. I brought a word from God to encourage them and I shared it with them in order to benefit them. It was what I believed God was saying to me… things God showed me, things which were so personal and so connected to that person. When I asked them: how did this affect you… they said: I felt like my whole life was open before God, and He was aware of my situation. Their perception was that God was talking to them personally.

God is Speaking!

The gifts of the spirit are manifestations of a person – the Holy Spirit; so it’s not like you carry some kind of special gift. In fact, you carry a spiritual sensitivity that you are accessing by faith. You have a person living on the inside of you and you work with Him to bring His life forth. It’s all about a relationship with the Holy Spirit. The passage says: “the manifestation of the spirit is given to everyone” – so who is left out of the word ‘everyone’? There’s no one left out – this is for you! Everyone includes you.

God is speaking… and He wants to use your voice to do it!

Jesus Our Sufficiency

...you will dream about!

If there is a glaring truth found in our ministry, its that without Christ we are completely lost. Yet with Christ we are a “basket case”. And that is good news, when you’re holding one of Jesus’ baskets.

Let me explain: Today I was reading the story of where Jesus feeds 5000 weary followers (Mk 6:35-44) and a comment jumped off the page. “…they took up twelve baskets full of fragments and of the fish.” After feeding on five loaves and two fish, the disciples are now standing with more than they began.

This is the story of Jesus- Our Sufficiency!

In this story are hidden three of the most profound lessons of ministry:
1st) The needs always exceed the resources.
2nd) I am always inadequate for the task Jesus has for me.
3rd) Jesus is always sufficient in every challenge we face.

We are learning how to trust the Lord. The needed finances always exceed the finances we have. The hurting people always exceed the number of people we need to minister to them. Almost every leader God called felt he was just not ready, adequate or capable: Moses, Gideon, Jeremiah and David, to name a few. The Apostle Paul reminds us, “Not that we are sufficient in ourselves to claim anything as coming from us, but our sufficiency is from God…” (2 Cor 3:5). We must recognize that in every task and challenge we face; God has given His Son, Jesus to be our sufficiency, our supply, and our resource.

Baskets Speak:

Our confidence is only as strong as the power at work inside of us. We each need more experience with Jesus to prove the sufficiency of His will and power toward our circumstances. ”Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us” (Eph 3:20). There is just no way to limit your asking and thinking when you stand with a basket full of sufficiency.

Miracle Zones:

The disciples in this story discovered that they stood in the miracle zone. I think they were a “basket case”, picking up the fragments in amazement and  knowing that they started with less than they ended with. Twelve baskets full of fragments has to speak to your heart. If Jesus was their sufficiency for inadequate food; what could He do with their imaginations or their unseen dreams. He was the Resource of miraculous provision and they were holding baskets that challenged their perceptions forever.

This is the testimony of ministry that sees Jesus as Our Sufficiency! This is what every disciple must discover!

Reign in Grace

“And with great power the apostles were giving their testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and great grace was upon them all.” (Acts 4:33)

Great Power & Great Grace… these are the keys to Great Christian Character! God’s Word promotes the idea that grace is more powerful than sin or test. We should never, never, never allow our perceptions of reality to diminish the flow of God’s power. “For if by the one man’s offense, death reigned through the one, much more those who receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ” (Rom. 5:17).

We have been made kings and priests to our God (Rev. 1:5) and grace is necessary to rule and reign in spiritual life. Grace is necessary to exercise authority in the way that God desires. God rules, but not harshly. He rules and releases His power by grace, justice, mercy and truth. In order to exercise authority in every situation, we need to receive more and more of God’s grace. This grace gives us power not only to use authority over negative situations in life, but also to testify in a way that will build strength into our faith and service for the Body of Christ.

Grace inspires us to…

1. Believe:

The Scripture tells us that Apollos helped those who had “believed through grace” (Acts 18:27). Even the faith which saves us comes through God’s grace. We don’t produce faith – we receive it as a gift from God. “For by grace you are saved, through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God.” (Eph. 2:8). Grace is favor that inspires us to exercise the faith which God has given us (Rom. 12:3).

  • By the grace we have, we must believe God… His Word, His promises, His commandments, His judgments.

2. Receive:

God’s Word says, “much more those who receive abundance of grace and the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.” (Rom. 5:17). The Apostle Paul speaks emphatically that grace was a precursor to walking out Kingdom lifestyles and anointing for ministry…  “We have received grace and apostleship” (Rom. 1:5). God does give grace, and it should inspire our bold Christian witness. We must be willing to receive it.

Also, grace must be received as grace. It cannot be received as payment for good behavior or good works. If we are thinking we receive grace from God on the basis of our good behavior, we will not be able to receive it as grace. Grace is given to the humble heart (Jms. 4:6). This is why God many times seems to greatly bless a sinner who has recently turned to Him, while seemingly ignoring many “good church people” who have been struggling faithfully for years with pride and selfish ambitions. Many have a wrong mentality concerning grace.

3. Continue:

“Now when the congregation had broken up, many of the Jews and devout proselytes followed Paul and Barnabas, who, speaking to them, persuaded them to continue in the grace of God” (Acts 13:43).

It is vitally important that all of us, especially those who have recently turned to God and trusted in His grace, continue in the grace of God. God gives more grace, so that we are inspired to flow with gracious words and activities. Jesus shocked the people of Nazareth who knew Him as a carpenter’s son, because of His gracious words (Lk. 4:22) and activity. We need to allow God to keep guiding our hearts to the place where He can continue to work in us by His grace. In the moment when we cease to allow God’s grace to work in us, we start to dry up as Christians and that life of God in us begins to lose its effectiveness. God will not force us to remain in His grace. It is something He gives us the power to do, but we must choose to go on. Don’t give up!

4. Discover & Manage:

“As each one has received a gift, minister it to one another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.” (1 Pet. 4:10).

Every born-again Christian has a ministry, through receiving a spiritual gift and using it for the glory of God. We have all been given grace to serve somewhere. God’s grace takes many forms, as many as there are people in Christ; every anointing is unique and special. A steward or manager must use what has been entrusted to him and multiply it, otherwise; he is not being a good and faithful steward. God’s grace and blessings were not given simply for us to sit in “services” and feel good. Rather, they were given that we might not only be blessed, but also be a blessing. Greater works (Jn. 14:12) require fresh grace!

5. Multiply & Spread It:

“For all things are for your sakes, that grace, having spread through the many, may cause thanksgiving to abound to the glory of God.” (2 Cor. 4:15).

Grace and peace do multiply… as more and more people spread it. We can spread God’s grace through giving, through preaching the gospel of the Kingdom, and by “speaking such a word as is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to those who hear” (Eph. 4:29 & 5:18-21). It is the privilege of every true Christian, not just a special few; to spread God’s grace to as many as possible. When we to this, more and more people will bring pleasure to the heart of God (Ps. 133).

Grace is our Prophetic Destiny:

“Arise, shine; For your light has come!
And the glory of the Lord is risen upon you.
For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth,
And deep darkness the people; But the Lord will arise over you,
And His glory will be seen upon you.
The Gentiles shall come to your light,

And kings to the brightness of your rising.” (Isa. 60:1-3)

A Mercy Seat

Where His Glory Dwells

Ark of the Testimony

“Now when Moses went into the Tabernacle of Meeting to speak with Him, he heard the Voice of One speaking to him from above the Mercy Seat that was on the Ark of the Testimony, from between the two cherubim; thus He spoke to him.” (Num. 7:89)

When we hear of Moses walking into the Tabernacle to speak with God, it is almost unbelievable at first. Our heart wonders of the sight… a face-to-face with the Creator of the Universe. And yet, something important comes to mind as I read and re-read this verse. God’s voice comes from a position above the Mercy Seat!

The Tabernacle of Meeting:

It is there and only there, that we find a mercy seat. It is not that way with man’s natural environment. In the world around us or even in nature, there is no seat of mercy. Yet in the Tabernacle of Meeting there is a Throne, a seat if you will, established at God’s initiative, that invites the seeker to see himself differently than the world’s perspective. The Tabernacle of Meeting was designed to be a place where God meets with man, to transform how he sees everything. It was to be where man was able to fellowship in God’s Glory, get his needs met and sense the embrace of a loving Father (Phil. 4:19).

This place offers the revelation of God’s true heart toward our deepest needs! We need this environment, this fellowship - before we have our lives put together. We need to be loved – before we are healed. We need to be loved in our rags and our wrestling. We need a place that has a Mercy Seat!

Our Father’s Heart:

To pull from the parable of the Prodigal Son… must I first hear music and dancing before I can arise and go to my Father’s house? That’s the way that it would work if Religion were my father, but my Father calls out to me in His fullness… an invitation to the orphan heart:

“Ho! Everyone who thirsts, Come to the waters;
And you who have no money, Come, buy and eat.
Yes, come, buy wine and milk, Without money and without price.
Why do you spend money for what is not bread,
And your wages for what does not satisfy?
Listen carefully to Me, and eat what is good,
And let your soul delight itself in abundance.
Incline your ear, and come to Me. Hear, and your soul shall live;
And I will make an everlasting covenant with you—
The sure mercies of David.” (Isa. 55:1-3)

Thankfully, the One who sits upon the Throne doesn’t call the white-robed crowd, but those clothed in sackcloth. I don’t have to wait for the music or the dancing. I don’t first have to receive the ring or the robe. I can come dirty. In fact, I must come hungry, seeking and poor.

In the Midst of Glory:

The Voice comes from above the Mercy Seat, where the Shekinah Glory rests above the Ark of the Covenant. Make no mistake, this is a supernatural experience that is not duplicated any other way, but standing before the Presence of God. In His Presence is fullness of joy!

Don’t wait until you’re well. Don’t delay until you can find suitable clothes. Don’t put off having this meeting until everything is just right. Come now! Come just as you are! Don’t wait for just the right robe, come in your “grave-clothes”.

  • Mercy means - You will not receive what you deserve!

In my mind, this is one of the greatest truths taught in the Bible. It is in reality the Gospel of the Kingdom! Jesus Christ has offered us the experience of a Mercy Seat… and in so doing He continues to destroy the works of the devil. (1 Jn. 3:8)

Access to Glory

Lake Victoria

Our access to God’s Glory is through entering into His Presence. We enter the gates of God’s Presence with thanksgiving and step into the courts of His Glory with praise (Ps 100:4-5). The Psalmist tells us that in doing this we will experience God’s goodness, mercy and truth in ways that both transform and increase from generation to generation.

The Glory Realm:

When we spend time in God’s Presence, we are accessing the Glory Realm. Its an atmosphere that revives the heart and renews the mind of the believer. I remind folks often that we enter the Glory Realm through the Presence, because Scripture clearly tells us that Jesus is the only Door into the Father’s heart. Through activities like praying, meditating on the Words of Christ, praise and worship, and looking into His eyes, our faces reflect His influence in our hearts. At the same time, we are being changed on the inside so that our lives begin to reflect His character. As we are transformed in this way the supernatural light that radiates within us illumines our path and increases with even greater splendor.

Moses Our Example:

“When Moses came down from Mt. Sinai with the two tablets of the Testimony in his hands he was not aware that his face was radiant, because he had spoken with the Lord. When Aaron and all the Israelites saw Moses, his face was radiant, and they were afraid to come near him. When Moses was finished speaking to them, he put a veil over his face. But whenever he entered the Lord’s presence to speak with Him, he removed the veil until he came out. And when he came out and told the Israelites what he had been commanded, they saw that his face was radiant. Then Moses would put the veil back over his face until he went in to speak with the Lord.” (Ex 34:29-35).

Glory is Visible:

From this passage, it is abundantly clear that the Glory of God on Moses was visible; it was not merely a spiritual or moral characteristic. His face was radiant. This means that there was a shining or a glow about it. We also observe a cause and effect relationship here. Whenever Moses would spend time in the Lord’s presence and speak with the Lord, this glory would appear on his face. We also know that this was limited to Moses at that time, as it did not happen to all the Israelites. It was so unusual that everyone else who saw him was afraid of the splendor radiating from his face. That’s why he covered up his face with a veil.

New Covenant Access:

Now under the New Covenant, the Glory Realm is not limited to one man. All believers have access to God’s Presence and the Glory that radiated from the face of Moses is available to all who know Him. In fact, this glory is even more glorious than what Moses experienced. Notice how the Apostle Paul spoke of the ministry of the Spirit to the Corinthians:

“Now if the ministry that brought death, which was engraved in letters on stone, came with Glory, so that the Israelites could not look steadily at the face of Moses because of its Glory, fading though it was, will not the ministry of the Spirit be even more glorious? If the ministry that condemns men is glorious, how much more glorious is the ministry that brings righteousness?” (2 Cor 3:7-9)

The Ministry of the Spirit comes with even more Glory!

“Therefore, since we have such a hope, we are very bold. We are not like Moses, who would put a veil over his face to keep the Israelites from gazing at it while the radiance was fading away…But whenever anyone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into His likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.” (2 Cor 3:12-13 & 16-18).

Archives