This may sound like my last letter but it is not my last letter. It is where I am at the moment. How has the body of Christ come to the place that the primary or foundational elements of Christianity are not our priority? WHY DID JESUS DIE? What is the point of being redeemed to Father if we do not walk with Him? Jesus was right, religion is terrible! I am not the I.E. of perfection, nor am I the most wonderful of men. I have been teaching intimacy for so many years and am still amazed that the Body of Christ has such a limited perspective of our relationship through Christ with Father. How is it that most of the body of Christ does not know His voice on a daily level? How can they do the work of Christ without the voice of the Father coming to them through Holy Spirit? Why is there a separation of leaders and the rest of the body when that is not given in Scripture? In all of our teachings around the world on discipleship and intimacy, when I question pastors, I find that on the average there is about 3-7% of the people “in Church” who do most all the ministry and prayer. That means that about 93% of the church is trained to sit, not participate. Here in Africa it is the same.
I started on this trip to Africa with a group of prayer people talking about how to get mission people to join them in prayer. Not long ago I was with a group that want to bring prayer people into the discipleship/house church groups. Both sides, same coin! Now I am with a group of pastors who say they want to change, and cause the Church to be the Church. I think they all will balk at the price. Prayer, discipleship, leadership and fellowship cannot be our goal… all are a part of being ”like Christ”.
Intercessors, missions people, discipleship people, traditional church people, house church or DMM people, clergy/laity people, 5-fold ministry people, Pentecostal, fundamentalists, conservatives, and all the other titles or doctrines that the enemy has used effectively to divide and destroy the body of Christ; ALL need to go back and read what the Word says about what they are arguing about and decide, “who is going to be like Christ”? I am pretty sure it says there is only ONE Body that is His naturally supernatural Love that never fails. Leaders are to serve. Fellowship is necessary, and Jesus is who we are to be like!
Where does the Bible separate the body into exclusive factions and sections? I am pretty sure it says that we are all ONE in Christ, and when two parts come together it edifies the Body. We need to esteem each other as the more important part. The enemy is good at distracting us from the truth and deceiving us to live a lie. His doctrine of separation and judging others is seemingly more powerful than the truth. Our traditions that keep us powerless and divided would seem to be stronger that God’s word and His presence. I know this because everywhere I go we major on tradition and minor on Love and obedience through relationship. It started with Adam and Eve, and his tactics still work today. Distraction, diversion, disobedience, division, and eventually destruction are still alive and well amongst Christ followers. We seem to major on our differences rather than our likenesses. We fight to the death for our right to disagree rather than finding our differences as attributes of diversity to attain unity. We will twist the word to make it fit our desire. We tend to hear from God what we want to hear. If we see our comfort or need to be right threatened, we will resort to arguing or not talking. The Word is to be a testimony of Christ to us, Jesus says. It was not given to bring division. Our appetites are what cause it to be a divisive book.
There are two things that need to happen:
First, we need a fresh look at our identity, perspective and position.
Secondly, we need to figure out how to live out His commands from the identity and relationship to which He calls us all.
That will take Honor, Obedience, and Sacrifice. Any abiding love costs. There is no relationship without paying a cost. The price of love can be pretty steep, just ask Father and Jesus.
Dana and I do not belong to “a” church; we do not belong to “a” denomination. We are neither Pentecostals nor conservatives. I do not look for a title in the “5-fold” ministry. We care not for status or fame. We belong to Jesus! We are Christ-followers, or followers of The Way. And we live for the audience of One, which causes us to be about “others”. WHY? Because we Love Him!
People are always trying to categorize everything into an acceptable mold they can be comfortable with. Jesus and His sacrifice do not fit our comfort zone nor are they acceptable. Yet, it is what we are called to.
I know the answer to all of these compartmentalization’s and doctrines we think are so important and that we can’t seem to get around, that separate us, (though we are all frustrated by them). It will be and is costly to our pride and arrogance, though. It will mean we will have to confess that we have followed lies and traditions that need to be killed, and that we have made the enemy’s lies more important to maintain than God’s truth and Love. No one wants to hear it or much less put a hand to the change God is requiring us to make, because it is going to be quite humbling, and costly, because of where those lies have brought us.
Here is a simple way to leave separation, segregation and division and be who we are to be.
REPENT – Change from religion that separates to relationship that brings family and prove the change in direction that is called repentance’s with our living.
PRAY – listen and respond to Him, instead of dictating to Him. (To say you do not know His voice is to deny who He is and to believe the enemy’s worst lie).
TRUST – If you ask Father a question, why wouldn’t it be Him who answers us?
OBEY – if we pray and trust then we must live out His answers. Our Obedience to His commands shows our Love. Place others above self.
LOVE – Don’t judge, don’t look for reasons to be separate but to be like Jesus.
IT IS ALWAYS THE SAME AND ALWAYS WILL BE. To be is to do. We will have to come back to the place of intimacy and obedience, out of trust, as His Love. We will have to throw down anything that hinders our relationship with Him and the fears of failure or of disgracing Father.
You cannot be a missionary without being a “house of prayer,” and you cannot be a house of prayer without being “missions minded”. You cannot be like Christ without Honor, obedience and sacrifice!
If we do not go and reproduce who He is and who we are, (make disciples), we are not who we say we are.
MT. 21:13a and Mt. 28:18-20. — Jn. 20:21
It is all about loving Him in way that gives Him pleasure and joy. We are to be about His business and not our own. We are to become vulnerable and open to His commands and desires of His heart. No other religion on earth teaches that to its followers. Only Christ and Christ alone makes that the center of our belief system. So why is it that we resist those very things in our walk with Him?