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Marks of a True Servant

July 20, 2011 1 comment

The Lord did not allowed me sleep last night, but put His words on my heart which I humbly pass on to you.  “If anyone serves me, he must follow me; and where I am, there will my servant be also. If anyone serves me, the Father will honor him. ” (John 12:26).

As I examine my own experience and the lives of many Christians who come into my path, I see that most of us have not understood the teaching of Jesus in this verse.  Many have a desire to “serve” the Lord.  Many proclaim they are ‘serving the Lord’.  But a careful examination of our lives reveals that most have not understood the requirement of “serving the Lord”.  “If anyone serves me, he must follow me.”

We cannot serve the Lord unless with a single eye we follow Jesus.  This means that we cannot follow Jesus and a popular preacher, a particular teaching by men, or a preferred method of ministry that pleases man (2 Tim. 4:3-4).  Jesus alone must be followed if He is going to be served.  This verse clearly shows that to follow Jesus, we must be with Him where He is, not expect Him to be with us in what we want to do in ministry.  “Following Him” may require a change in my ministry focus.

A “true servant” has no agenda of his own.  A “true servant” only seeks to know what his Master’s will is and be in His presence, working side by side with his Master.  I am severely tested by this!  How much of our prayers focus on asking the Lord to join us in our agenda rather than longing and seeking with all our energy to be with the Lord where He is, doing what He is doing, working His work?  See John 5:19-20.  Let’s go over those words again.  “Where I am, there will my servant be also.”  In other words, there is a difference between ‘claiming to be a servant of the Lord’ and being with the Lord where He is which qualifies me for being a servant.  The proof that I am the Lord’s servant is not in numbers, the conferences I attend, the people I know, or the size of a church or ministry.  The proof that I am a servant is how close I am to the Lord!

My dear brother or sister, please examine your heart to see how closely you are following the Lord.  During times of testing we tend to follow at a distance as Peter did in Luke 22:54.  What a difference in Acts 2 when Peter was filled with the Spirit!  He spoke and worked where God was working through the Spirit and the result was fruitful increase in the Church.  The greatest increase and fruitfulness will come through intimacy with the Lord in everything I do.  See John 15:1-16.

Next time I will speak about the changes that take place the closer I am with the Lord.  Until then or until He comes, may our hearts be restless until we are so close that we hear the Master’s heart-beat.  In this we will find the applause of the Father, not men!

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Where Do We Get our Words?

March 25, 2011 1 comment

I have been reading through 1 Kings and have come to chapters 21 and 22. The Holy Spirit has impressed on my heart as I have read through this OT book the critical need for integrity in every area of life and ministry. In chapter 13, the “man of God” was disciplined by death because he did “not keep the commandment of the Lord his God” (13:21).

In chapter 21 and 22 we have a different challenge; whether the “prophet” or “man of God” will speak what God has commanded him to speak, even if it results in death. I feel deeply the challenge, as did the prophet Micaiah, to say only “what the Lord says to me” (22:14). The danger is for us to give into the pressure of speaking what people want to hear because they have “turned away from listening to the truth and wandered of into myths” (2 Timothy 4:3-4). As it was in the days of Israel, sadly there very few who really want to hear what God is saying as did king Jehoshaphat (22:5).

Our greatest model of faithful speaking is Jesus. He said in John 12:49; “…the Father who send Me has Himself given Me a commandment – what to say and what to speak.” In this verse lies another important principle; that the man of God is not sent by men to say what men want us to say, but sent by God to minister ONLY in the power and control of the Holy Spirit (See Acts 13:1-3).

Both Micaiah and Jesus were willing to die for speaking the word of the God. They both lived in intimacy with the Lord so they knew what He wanted them to say. Success is not measured by how many people agree what what we say or how long we live. God measures success by whether we hear His words and obey them. As I write this, I feel very challenged by my own words – may they be the words I have heard from the Father, Son and Holy Spirit!

“Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel,” (Philippians 1:27).

I will not refrain from speaking His truth or His name,
Neither for fortune or for fame.
I treasure my Lord’s call and His command,
More than man’s applause, glory and shame.

Sherman

What is like a RIVER?

February 27, 2011 Leave a comment

I am thinking about a question that David Zac Niringiye of Uganda, Africa asked as he reflected on the early Church in Acts; “…how did this small band of disciples make such a tremendous impact on their world?  What was their Secret? What can we learn from their strategy?

First and foremost, was it because the Holy Spirit was like a “river” flowing out of the heart of these men? (See John 7:37-39).  Was it because Peter, John Stephen, Philip, Paul and many others were driven, controlled and empowered by the coming and indwelling of the Holy Spirit that was promised by Jesus? (Acts 1:8).

Keep Asking Questions – God Gives Answers

Sherman

Encouragement From Mpika, Zambia

October 3, 2010 Leave a comment

Dear brethren in the Lord,
Gracious greetings in the name of our precious Lord Jesus Christ.

It gives  me much pleasure to share with you what the Holy Spirit is continuing to do in the church of Christ here in this part of Zambia, Mpika. The first the attendance was 10 in number minus brother Tim.
1.The first workshop with Tim.
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During this first session of the introduction of the God’s Plan for Church Planting Tim covered some parts of the manual with power of the Holy Spirit which convicted us for not following  what the scriptures say about the church Christ said he was going to build. The  scriptures plainly guides how the church should be but we missed the biblical principals and instead applied western ways and our traditions. Acts 10:38 tells us  “How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power….” and Jesus told his disciples that “You shall receive power after that the Holy Spirit is come upon you…..” ( Acts 1:8 ). We also looked at the  leaders of the new church where the bible says they were full of the Holy Spirit, faith, committed, united, prayerful, devoted to the word of God etc. It was so sad to find that most of what l have mentioned is not found in the churches especially  in our leaders even  power of God does not accompany our preaching.
We humbly submited ourselves to God in true repentance asking God to forgive us for overlooking the scriptures. We asked the Holy Spirit to start working in us first, then our families and then in the lives of our leaders and lastly the churches. I would like to confess that when we did this the Lord gave us his grace and forgave us. Things started to happen here at our church for the first time we exprienced the power of God working in the church after we taught many members were delivered, set free from evil spirits, healed and saved. News of this change spread in Mpika and new members started coming in the church. We went to Muwele, for you who know the place you will be able to imagine that place. People were set free and a woman who had problem with her legs was delivered and started walking, one woman brought some charm and was released. Muwele was on fire and people from the villages started to come and as a result we could not meet in the church intead we started meeting outside.
2. The second session with Pastor Sherman.
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Because of the firm of the first meeting we could not avoid other pastors and women to come and participate. This time we were 21 participants excluding brother Sherman.
What can you expect as you look to the first meeting? Abundant grace eh. Yes, our God is so gracious and merciful. From the word go the brother shared with us from 1Thess 1:2-7 and part of chapter 3. He spoke about  Preaching the Gospel with Power, with the Holy Spirit and Deep Conviction then he said the word of God is sufficent by itself. He finally asked us to imitate Christ.. On the second day he told us that our Diploma was Jesus Christ and also spoke about humility and accept who we are because of the grace of God just as our brother Sherman has accepted who he is by God’s grace.
We went through the rest of the lessons with convictions as we realized our failures and mistakes. The challenge is to consider our measure of our sucess by how many churches we will live behind that will be the churches Jesus said he will build. Sherman is really also a man of God who is full of the Holy Spirit. May l tell you that our crusade is still on and we are so glad that we still feel that anointing and the zeal for the work of God. We will continue to walk in our testmonies by the grace of God and continue to teach this back to the sriptures. The close of the workshop was so colourful when certificates were given to the first participants.
Tim and Sherman your work is not over remember your teachings how Paul and his team were doing, going back to strengthen and encourage the brethren and the churches. We need you so much men of God. God has put this teaching of GPCP on your hearts for the great purpose in this last days.
May conclude by thanking all of you who have been praying for us and the two brother Tim and Sherman and thanyou so much fot the financial support for this workshop to take on. God indeed bless you richly. Please continue praying for Disciple Making Ministry as we need to reach the churches with this revival teachings to all the churches in Zambia and Congo DR. Pray for me and my family even as we put everything into practice.
GLORY BE TO OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST.
AMEN.

Henry

Arabic Launch In Israel

September 19, 2010 Leave a comment

Greetings in the wonderful Name of our awesome Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

Hanna and I will be departing today for Nazareth, Israel to launch Arabic GPCP Manual along with a five day workshop. We will be in Upper Nazareth launching this tool with a blend of Palestinians Christians and Messianic Christians.
Then I will be going to Jerusalem and surrounding areas to speak at various churches and ministries. Lord willing I will be returning home early October. I would appreciate your prayers according to the requests below. Please remember Sherman who is in India presently doing GPCP workshops. Praise our Lord for the awesome privilege to join our wonderful Savior at work around the world.

Prayer Requests: Will you join in praying for God’s blessing upon this mission?

  • For our Head, Jesus Christ, to be preeminent
  • For God’s grace and power to be experienced and expressed
  • For our safety and good health
  • For the Lord to grant us wisdom and favor as we meet these fellow servants
  • For us to be an encouragement to God’s people in Israel
  • For unity and peace among these brothers

Overflowing Gratitude for your partnership and prayers in His glorious Gospel throughout the world!
His Servant,

Tim

Zambia Testimonies – To God Be The Glory!!

July 18, 2010 1 comment

Below are some testimonies we received from a few brothers and sisters in Zambia.  We have permission to post them without their names – after all, we want Jesus to increase and for us to decrease.  It is so exciting though to hear how God is working through His Holy Spirit and can’t help but share with all of you these little excerpts.

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I know you may wonder how l can testify because l was not contributing or asking questions during our launching. I am not so educated but the Lord has blessed me with understanding English although l can not speak or write it well. I am writing this testimony through my wonderful husband who is translating for me.
The days we were together were different from all the days in my life as the Holy Sprit was speaking and ministering to me, revealing our mistakes we were making when planting churches. We have served the Lord for more than 25 years pastoring and planting churches. What we learned was so unique and very challenging. I truly regretted the wasted years we spent not doing everything with the owner of  the church, Jesus Christ. The material in CPM for God’s plan to planting churches is really a changing life. We missed Jesus way and again we could not apply Paul’s way but adopted the Western world system. May the Lord have mercy on us. The manual is fully packed with all that can bring a change. Thank Holy Spirit, thank you  To God be all the glory.
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Greetings in the blessed name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Where ever Jesus is a great change occurs or happens and this is what really happened in Lusaka, Zambia. Before brother team came l had the real conviction that the Holy Spirit was going to do something extra ordinary when we meet for God’s plan on Church Planting. Yes, it happened. The Holy Spirit convinced us that we missed something and then He showed us and we repented for the mistakes we made in the past. We thank God for his grace that he could come to correct us at the right time as we want to plant his churches with Him. We are now  Jesus’ partners as He builds his church. Never let God bypass you.
I was not seeing Tim but the Holy Spirit as he was teaching and l was all the time being highly motivated by the lessons. The teaching was really new and life changing to my personal life and to the church in Zambia. Churches in Zambia have  Western  systems artificially imposed upon them and they are so different from the Church which Jesus said he was going to build in Matthew 16:18 and the churches Paul planted. Thank God that we are going to plant indigenous churches in the proper sense of the word of God. Paul has provided the tools for our foundation and that is his letters. I am so glad to tell you that immediately we came back we started to lay the foundation on our  local church which will be the model for the other churches, we taught and things are happening. We want to to see the power of God manifesting now even as we teach than in the past, we must allow the Holy Spirit to work in us and in the church. Oh praise Jesus. Glory be to God.
We are looking forward to our next work shop to take place as soon as possible. We are ready for a CHANGE.

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Greetings in the name of Jesus our Lord

My testimony is, from the time finished the teaching about the church planting, a change started to take place inside me and l started to recall my past work which l actually considered to be done in vain and l regret because the foundation was not as l have  learnt. I have noticed that all the years l spent doing the work of God  was really  nothing ,how l wish l could go back and do it  in Paul’s way. I thank God that the change has started with me so that others may emulate from me and then the church will indeed have a biblical foundation. My change will also affect my family which will influence the church and the community. We would like to translate the material into our local language if God provides the needed funds for translation.Tim, please do not take long to come back.
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I am so humbled with what our Lord is doing. Brother, our service today was also different and this is because our homes are changing. Please pray as l meet the leaders tomorrow. ” Let Him increase and us decrease.”

Delhi, India – A Great Hunger For Christ

Friday night, I was in great despair because I knew if the Lord did not step in and heal me, there was no way I was going to be able to fly out of Lusaka Saturday morning due to stomach problems. Lusaka is not the ideal place to be sick, “no place like home.”  But all the worry was of no value, the Lord healed me or should I say, “He sealed me,” and I departed Zambia on time.

I Arrived Delhi, India via the soccer crazed Johannesburg and flooded Mumbai Sunday morning after thirty hours of traveling. Fregy was hanging in there after my flight was delayed two hours. We immediately headed off to speak at a new church, meeting in a home on the site of a police station. After bringing a brief message we ate and fellowshipped together, probably much like the early church. Than we headed back to lodging where I fought sleep until 10pm knowing that if I went to bed early, I would not sleep through the night. Had a good sleep and was up early Monday rested and fired up ready to launch GPCP with about 30 key church planters located outside of Delhi at the Agape Camp. This camp and ministry is headed by Dr. Alex Abraham, a surgeon who has dedicated his life to reaching the unreached people groups in India. Pray for him since he had a stroke at his father’s funeral last week.

We completed the GPCP with these key leaders, with many showing a great hunger and interest in getting back to the way of Christ and the apostles. One thing the Lord did reveal to us, as usual, we lack much of the leadership and power of the Holy Spirit. Two areas which were lacking was our intimacy with Christ and relationship with their wives. The Lord did not move exactly like He did in Lusaka, bringing confession and repentance, but He did convict and reveal just as Paul told the Thessalonians, “the Lord is faithful. He will establish you…”

We closed out the launch last night with much zeal and enthusiasm to complete the preparation work for a December four day workshop. I could already see the seed falling on some fertile soil. The increase is the Lord’s responsibility and this He will do in His own way and time. I often think about the slow work of those who have gone before, like Hudson Taylor, John and Betty Stam and many other saints who went to China. Little did they know after they were home with the Lord that God would be bringing thousands, actually, millions to Himself? So, we remain faithful to sow the precious and powerful Seed, the Word of God, leaving the results to the Lord of the harvest.  But we still pray that the Lord of the harvest will send forth laborers into His field which IS ripe for harvest. God is truly moving in these last days. He is looking for those vessels for honorable purposes that are willing to change and abandon themselves completely, set apart as holy, useful to the master and ready for every good work.

Today, we leave by bus for Rajasthan. You can see on the map below that Rajasthan is one of the least reached states in India with less than 1 percent Christian.  We were going to go by train, but the BJP party is striking the trains and in the north, the Maoists have threatened train bombings today and tomorrow. India remains an exciting and opportune place, probably the “last frontier for the Gospel.”

I have enclosed a picture of the world showing all the unreached people groups with purple dots. Guess what area is almost solid purple?  Yes, India, the last nations or people groups to be reached in fulfilling Matthew 24:14. Finally Brothers, pray that the Word of the Lord may speed ahead and be honored, that He will make our love increase and abound for one another so that He may establish our hearts blameless in holiness before our God and Father at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Thanks for your prayers and encouragement along this incredible journey the Lord has graciously allowed us to participate with Him. To Him be the glory forever and ever. Amen!

In Christ, Tim