Thursday, July 14, 2011

A Statewide Call to Pray - Day Twenty-Seven!

Hamills of Lamplighter Ministries
First off I want to acknowledge Jon and Jolene Hamill for their hard work in organizing and conducting this portion of the 11-11 Campaign, CONVERGE GETTYSBURG.  It was their plan that served as the catalyst to position Tom and I for the work the Lord was calling us to in the region.

During one of the meetings Tom and I heard a message by Bishop Harry Jackson.  Bishop Jackson ministers in the Washington D.C. area, and has a network of churches around the country.  He has been fighting the battle against same sex marriage and is facing persecution from many sides, including some churches. His message addressed the use of the title apostle and how common place it has become today.  He very clearly articulated specifics to the office of apostle and how it functions and brought forth some truths that the church must hear in this hour in order to advance.  

Bishop Jackson’s point was that not every one who calls themselves an apostle actually has the grace to function in that office. Scripture confirms this message in Revelation; “And you have tested those who say they are apostles and are not,…” (Rev. 2:2 NKJV)   This message carries over to all the offices and functions placed in the church.  We are going through a time of testing in this wilderness experience.  When we walk out of the wilderness it will be time to function at a level of maturity that forces us to correct issues that have kept us from advancing in past seasons.

When we look at the wilderness experience of Jesus we begin to see what to expect when we emerge from the wilderness.  He came out of His wilderness testing and returned to Nazareth knowing that a change had taken place. Those in Nazareth couldn’t identify the change because nothing appeared different in the natural.  Jesus had spiritually stepped into destiny and was now functioning in His calling.  We are at a place now where we should be operating in and utilizing the gifts, not just teaching about them.

When the CONVERGE group had gathered on the battlefield at Gettysburg to complete their assignment I took time to walk up to one of the statues on high ground occupied by the Union forces.
From this vantage point it was evident that the Confederate forces were against insurmountable odds.  As I left the statue and walked back to the group the Lord began to speak and revealed what occurred during the three day battle.  First General Lee had succumbed to pride.  His forces had experienced numerous successes and he had begun to feel they could not be defeated.  Second, Lee was not listening to counsel.  The Lord put it this way, “the apostle did not listen to the prophets”.  General Longstreet told General Lee numerous times that this was not the time or place to face the Union forces.  Let me assure you here the Lord was not commenting on the outcome of the Civil War or calling General Lee an apostle.  He was drawing a comparison using historical facts to show me what can occur when we don’t function correctly in our offices and gifts.  In this three day battle over 50,000 soldiers lost their lives.

I got the point.  Whether everyone in this nation realizes it or not we are going through a wilderness experience.  We do not know the outcome, but we do know there will be one.  Our job as “the church” is to emerge from this experience changed.  It is imperative that we function at a new level of unity and mature recognizing and utilizing the gifts God has given us.  There is a purpose, there is a cause.  In the days ahead it will not matter what it looks like in the natural, we must know what has occurred in the Spirit and function accordingly.

Ken Bryan

Post Script from Tom - Along with pride and lack of vision (or counsel), another major roadblock to victory was an army that was scattered along a line many miles long that had very little communication or cooperation.  As the Lord musters His troops this day - we must move together with humility, vision and cooperation - the very points by which the Lord defined the TXAPN network when we were set into place in Austin in June 2007.

As I return from vacation in a couple of days I will be sharing on revelations the Lord has made to me "on the coast."

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