April 28, 2012

are we offering "more than" sermons?

where we are living they are putting greater and greater restrictions on Christian worship. obviously the enemy isn't happy with how many "stealings" are taking place out of his demonic kingdom! muslims and hindus are coming to Christ and he is pissed (can I say that?). anyway, I was struck yesterday as my wife and I were leading the youth group meeting (in a new, temporary location because the fundamentalists have essentially empowered a move towards restricting Christians from renting and using villas for their meetings) that some muslims are coming to "watch" the Christians worship. talk about a plan backfiring on the fundys! they are trying to shut us down and MORE muslims are coming to Church. Anyway, what struck me was the fact as we were ending our service, the mosques were all in the middle of their Friday sermons (most Christians meet on Fridays in this part of the Middle East) and I was wondering what the "difference" was between the two services for the most part. Most Christian worship centers around a "sermon" and that is what the mosque also is centered around "a sermon". What bothered me was when I wondered if the muslim "visitors" to our Church anything fundamentally different (apart of course from the lively worship in a mixed gender setting). They seemed to really enjoy the service and even put their kids in the Sunday school, but I noticed that 4 people CAME on crutches and those same 4 people also LEFT on their crutches. That is exactly what you see at the mosque, but (and surely members of this group know where I'm going) shouldn't these muslim visitors have seen those crutches piled up in the front somewhere? People didn't leave Jesus' meetings WITH their canes/crutches and my conviction is that they shouldn't be leaving our meetings with those things either! I was sad when it hit me that these muslim guests to our service didn't see an "accurate representation" of the God's Kingdom. (in case you are wondering, we did get our hands on one of the people on crutches and another woman in a cast). I should also note that we attend a "Charismatic" Church. I love sermons as much as anybody, but if that is all most Christian churches are modeling.....something for us to be thinking about. 

share this with your pastors at your own risk!

kingdom healings in a deteriorating Middle East

in some ways the Middle East is a deteriorating mess, but then we are seeing THE KINGDOM increasing! in a Kingdom atmosphere last night there were some fun healings - the words of knowledge starting coming and partial deafness was healed. one word came about a glad issue and one of our community was sick at home with swollen glands in the neck. we prayed for her over the phone and all the pain left her! headaches in particular areas were called out - healed. shoulder pain called out and healed. such an atmosphere of encounter. many prophetic dreams were shared that had been received in the previous week. others had visions. one encountered an angel in the meeting.

April 22, 2012

Syrian muslim woman healed

while looking at watches in a store, I got a word of knowledge for a foot/ankle problem that was for a Moroccan muslim employee.  he said he had an injury there, but that it wasn't hurting and didn't need prayer.  his co-worker, a muslim woman from Syria, however was extremely interested in how I knew that he had the problem.  I explained that it was one of the ways God speaks.  I knew the Lord had really gotten her attention and I asked Him if He would give me a word for her.  Then I got another word of knowledge about a shoulder/neck issue and asked her about it.  She had the problem and was absolutely shocked.  as is often the case, muslims are often most amazed that God has spoken than about the healing miracle that follows.

thankfully my wife was nearby and so I waited for her to arrive.  she prayed for the woman and the Lord completely healed her.  she was so thankful and so hungry.  her reaction was exactly what you want to see.  full of gratitude and amazed by God's touch.  my wife is excited to follow up with this woman who has so clearly encountered the Kingdom.  may she be interested in learning about the King Himself!