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Restoring The Flow

The Lord wants to bring a word of comfort and restoration today. He is restoring the flow of the oil of the Spirit.

Psalms 34:18 (NIV) The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.

It seems almost daily that I am hearing about more people going through challenges in every possible area. Whether or not difficulties are increasing, I’m not sure – but the past few years have certainly been extremely tough for many.

Let’s get real. There are times as believers when we feel on fire, full of passion and life, and energised about God’s kingdom and His purposes. Then there are other seasons when we feel dry, discouraged or hurting. That abundant life can seem unattainable, and our joy can get squashed.

The wonderful news is that the same mighty God who rules with great power and justice also tenderly gathers up His family when they need care. I was recently drawn to this scripture in Isaiah:

Isaiah 42:3a (NIV) A bruised reed he will not break, and a smouldering wick he will not snuff out.

This scripture gives us an image of a smouldering wick – an oil lamp in which only an ember or slight glow remains. The verse speaks of one whose zeal might be waning, yet it highlights the tenderness of Jesus, the Good Shepherd caring for His flock. Jesus does not cast aside those who are bruised or struggling. Our Father speaks to us as His loved children, those he cares for deeply.

The Lord gives us insight into His intention in the spiritual realm through what we can understand in the natural or physical realm. If we look at a candle, we tend to see the wick as the part that is burning. But in fact, it is the candle wax that provides the fuel. This is the same principle as an oil lamp. The wick is soaked in the oil, and as the oil draws up the wick, the oil burns at the end of the wick.

In an oil lamp, the wick can burn out too fast – because the wick itself is being used as fuel, rather than the oil. And if a wick is too long or too short, the flame will smoulder or go out. A poorly trimmed wick will result in a flame which is dim or smoky. A wick must be close to the oil and well soaked in order to burn. And of course, an oil lamp needs to regularly have the oil topped up.

The Lord is gently leading you today to lighten the load and to remain close to the source. God doesn’t need us trying to add more fuel in the natural. We don’t need to strive or do things by natural efforts – we need the Spirit of God to pour out fresh oil. Father wants to lead us to rivers of living water, that we would receive life for ourselves, and that we would overflow with that living water to others. He is restoring the flow.

Revelation 7:17 (NIV) For the Lamb at the center of the throne will be their shepherd; ‘he will lead them to springs of living water.’ ‘And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.’”

John 7:38 (NIV) Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.”

If you are feeling bruised or broken, the Lord’s desire is to refresh you and strengthen you. For those of you who feel like your spiritual passion has been waning or your flame is smouldering, the Lord’s desire is to breathe new life into you. He has the power to restore the flow of oil and to rekindle your flame.

The Spirit of God is hovering over you, and His desire is to comfort you. The Lord is present to restore hope for your disappointments and hurts. The Father is here to remove guilt – for those who have been far away, as well as those who have been soaking in the oil yet wondering why you don’t feel connected to the Lord. The Spirit is present to breathe life and fresh oil into your reservoir.

When that wick is smouldering, there are two ways that ember can come back to flame. Firstly, some gentle blowing can bring that ember back to life. Take time to allow the wind of the Holy Spirit to refresh you and minister to you today. His breath gives life. Secondly, another source of flame can also help spark and nurture the fire. God created us for relationship, and there is a beautiful strengthening that occurs when another believer comes alongside us to encourage us, pray with us, and comfort us.

If you are feeling thirsty or dry, then the Lord has fresh rivers of living water for you. If you are feeling like you have been trying to constantly add more fuel, then Father invites you to soak in His presence and receive some fresh oil. And if you need someone to stand with you, then reach out for prayer and encouragement. The Holy Spirit is ready and waiting to restore the flow.

 


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Discipleship

Discipleship is an essential part of being a follower of Christ. But what does it really look like to be a disciple – or to make disciples?

Matthew 4:18-20 (NIV) As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.” At once they left their nets and followed him.

There is a call to be a disciple of Jesus before we are commissioned to make disciples.

  • “Come” – leave your position.
  • “Follow” – let me lead.
  • “Me” – shift your focus.

“Come follow me” is a calling out. “And I will send you out” is a calling out that results in a sending out. “To fish for people” is a calling out that results in a sending out on a spiritual mission.

To be a disciple is to be a student, a pupil, and a learner. You can’t be a disciple if you are not teachable. And you won’t be teachable if you think you know best. A disciple is marked by humility, surrender and discipline. Discipleship is not about life skills – it is about spiritual growth. So, how closely do you follow Jesus? How completely do you follow Jesus?

The call to be a disciple precedes the commission to make disciples. We must follow before we lead; and we must follow as we lead. The commission to make disciples will always be the result of the call to be a disciple. There comes a point in our spiritual journey that if we are not making disciples, then we are not being a disciple.

MAKING FRIENDS OR MAKING DISCIPLES?

God created us for relationship, and friendships are important. Yet within the Church, and within groups of believers, friendship can easily rise to the forefront of our focus and intention, and discipleship can get neglected or ignored. One of the main reasons that we may not be making disciples is that we focus too much on being liked.

If we are doing what God has commissioned us to do, not everyone will like us. We need to settle this issue. Have you read about the life of Jesus and the early apostles?! The world won’t always like us.

John 15:18-19 (NIV) If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you.

But Jesus likes you, and Jesus calls you friend! Jesus commissioned us to make disciples, and He chose us to go and bear fruit that will last. There are certain things that you won’t say or do if your primary focus is on making friends rather than making disciples. The moment we make it more about making friends than making disciples, we lose our way.

WHAT DOES MAKING DISCIPLES LOOK LIKE?

Making disciples is walking with people towards God. Making disciples involves corporate learning and private learning. Making disciples involves baptising people into the fullness of who God is.

Matthew 28:18-20 (NIV) Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

Discipleship should explore the question, “Who do you say God is?” Discipleship involves talking about the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Making disciples includes teaching people to obey everything God has commanded.

  • Explore questions such as, “What has God said about…salvation, righteousness, sanctification, justification, atonement, forgiveness, grace, faith, love, purity, spiritual gifts, eternal life, etc.”
  • Look together at truth that matters from the Word of God, and look at present issues through the lens of what the Bible says, not through what other people are saying.

The primary commission of a godly leader is to make disciples, not to lead a department or to make decisions.

Discipleship means that every believer is:

  • Equipped to have a deepening relationship with the Father
  • Equipped to be a more accurate reflection of Jesus
  • Equipped to have a greater dependence on the Holy Spirit

WHO ARE YOU BEING DISCIPLED BY?

  • Being discipled is not vague, it is intentional and relational.
  • Discipleship means giving someone authority to speak into your life.
  • A disciple submits to their teacher’s authority, and receives insight, training, and correction from them. Submitting to authority is God’s protection in our lives – it helps us to see our blind spots, and therefore, helps us to walk in greater freedom. Submitting to authority guards against pride and helps us to walk in humility.

WHO ARE YOU DISCIPLING?

  • Discipling others takes time and intentionality.
  • Discipling others involves living a life worth following.
  • Discipling others involves speaking prophetically into God’s intention for them.
  • Discipling others involves direction and correction when necessary.
  • Discipling others is always fueled by love and by a holy sense of divine commission.

Imagine what the church globally would look like if every believer picked up the commission of discipleship! The Church is Jesus’ bride. We want to be prepared for the return of Jesus – and our role as believers and disciple makers is to prepare as many others as possible to live in the divine power of the Holy Spirit and to walk in spiritual authority.

REFLECTION:

What is the next step that Father wants you to take on your journey of being a disciple?

What is the next step that Father wants you to take on your journey of being a disciple maker?


HEAR STEVE SPEAK ON DISCIPLESHIP HERE.

What Do You See

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we just leapt from one glorious mountain top to the next? Birds singing, sun shining, flower blossoms and the sweet smell of summer… Then you wake up!

The valley is real, the clouds are real, the birds sometimes just squawk, and you start to question the seemingly perpetual winter. So, how do you handle that? How did Paul honour God in the prison?

For me there are many keys, but today I wish to share one of them:

  • What fills your sight, fills your heart.
  • What fills your heart, determines your future!

The truth is that restrictions & darkness are God’s opportunities! So, the real question is not your circumstances, but what do you see? Are you looking through the eyes of your humanity or are you looking through eyes anointed by the eye-salve of heaven, the Holy Spirit? What do you see? What is it that fills your sight, your perception, your worldview, your focus, and your vision? It is what you see with your natural eye that will seek to intimidate you; but it is what you see with your spiritual eyes, anointed by the Holy Spirit, that will empower you!

You might say, “But David, we live in the midst of restriction and contradiction – that’s reality!” My friends, restriction and contradiction have never been able to restrain a God that can open prison doors and bring Lazarus out of the tomb. Restrictions and darkness are His opportunities!

My friends, it was in the darkness of Gethsemane and the cross that Jesus brought redemption to mankind. Why? Because of what He saw! His eyes were not fixed on the agony of the Cross, although He was acutely aware of it. His eyes were focused on the atonement of mankind.

Heb 12:2 (NKJV) looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

JESUS triumphed! Why? Because of what filled His sight. Jesus triumphed because of what He chose to focus on. He was not focused upon the rough sawn timbers nor the spikes in His hands, but He was focused on the hope set before Him. It was because of what He saw! Jesus never surrendered his spiritual authority for a single moment. The cross did not take His spirit, He offered it up when HE was good and ready!

The darkness of Satan’s intention has always provided our Father an opportunity to work miraculously for His own purpose. Right now, in the midst of your circumstances and the unrelenting barrage of news on your TV, what is it that you choose to focus on? Yes, that’s right! What we focus on is a choice! Satan may have his objective because he so hates mankind, but I assure you, GOD has HIS objective. Not only for the planet, but for you, for your family, and for your life! This is not a moment to be intimidated, this is a moment of potential destiny for you – if you can but see it!

My friends, the Bible is full of men and women who refused to be intimidated by their circumstances, and their courage was because of what they saw, that which they chose to focus upon.

DANIEL refused to obey a royal decree and continued to pray to God. It was in the darkness of the lion’s denthat Daniel was used to change the heart of a king and turn a nation to God. Why? Because of what he saw! His courage was because of that which filled his sight. He saw the supernatural capacity of his God to protect him and prevail over every opposition.

MOSES was confronted by the red sea in front and the Egyptian army behind, but he was not intimidated. Consequently, he walked in the authority of his God. An authority that could not be shaken!

JOSHUA was confronted by the impregnable fortress of Jericho, an impossible task, but he was not intimidated. Consequently, he walked in the authority of his God. An authority that could not be shaken!

DEBORAH had to accept the role in Israel of prophetess, judge, and warrior leader in a time of great oppression and evil against God’s people, but she was not intimidated. Consequently, she walked in the authority of her God, an authority that could not be shaken. She shattered the forces of hell and evil!

PAUL faced many persecutions. It was in the darkness of the storm and shipwreck that Paul brought redemption to Malta. Why? Because of what filled his sight! Not the rocks and the waves, but the unrelenting pursuit and intervention of God to keep him on assignment. Paul knew that God had a purpose for him, and that is what he chose to focus upon. Consequently, he walked in the authority of his God. An authority that could not be shaken!

JOHN WESLEY in the mid 1700’s, rode on horseback through sleet and ice in an English winter. He was violently opposed by churches and society at large, often isolated, abandoned by many members of his family, and without support of any kind. And yet he brought revival to England and the world. Why? Because he was not intimidated! The circumstances did not fill his sight, the greatness of his God and his commission filled his sight. That’s what he chose to focus on. Consequently, he walked in the authority of his God. An authority that could not be shaken!

2 Timothy 1:7 (NKJV) For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.

Because of the risen Christ, you and I now possess a spiritual authority that cannot be shaken. But we also must understand (see Hebrews chapter 12) that shaking and severe testing of that authority will come! The cross and the tomb were a reality.

Will the storms come? Yes! Will the shaking of opposition and circumstances come to us all? Yes. But we must settle the issue once and for all. We do not walk subject to human frailty and vulnerability, rather we walk under the divine command of a King who is absolute in His power. In the spirit world, right now, there is no dispute about the absolute power and ruling dominion of Jesus as absolute king.

Some of you right now, reading my words, need to identify those areas that have undermined your faith, shaken your convictions, or intimidated your decisions, or qualified your future expectations. You need to reach out and receive His divine grace, a fresh infilling of His divine power, a moment of truth and revelation, a re-alignment of thinking so that your anticipations come in line with His prophetic intention for your life, your vocation, and your calling. It can only come by the Holy Spirit.

Join with me and declare that you will embrace and obey everything that Father gives you to initiate! He wants to give you bold, faith-filled initiatives!!

“I walk under the divine command of Jesus, King of Kings!

And HIS authority, which now becomes MY authority, cannot be shaken!

I embrace decisions of faith!

I embrace future expectations of the miraculous!

I will not be intimidated!”

Love and God Bless,

David.

Watch a one-minute video from David: ‘What Do You See’.

Prophetic Declaration To The Body Of Christ

Dear Friends,

It has been only on very rare occasions that I have claimed to make a declaration, as a Prophet, directly on behalf of my Father to the Body of Christ. But today is one of those days.

Matthew 5:1-12 could not be clearer. God has promised indescribable ‘blessing’ (HIS choice of words) to those that love Him and hunger after Him. And yet there are non-negotiable statements that qualify who can access such supernatural grace and provision.

The divine interventions and favour of God (which He so longs to bring to us) belong to those of a humble, dependent, pure, and merciful heart. It is does not belong to the proud, independent, impure, or the self-governed.

The ‘Kingdom’ (authority… realm of the King’s rule) belongs to those of a pure, fully surrendered heart and a speech that gives evidence of that inner beauty.

We all know that there are and will continue to be matters of biblical command and conviction that we cannot, and must not, compromise. We must be men and women of unswerving biblical conviction and the truth. Having now clearly stated that…

This world is filled, as never before, with arrogant attitudes and endless arguments. Men and women showing anger, negative reaction, and resentment; declaring their frustrations, declaring their arguments and opinions. It should not be so among those who claim to represent Jesus!

The Body of Christ needs to cast off the spirit of this world that leads to arguments and endless opinions. It must realise the anger of God at those Christians who attack other Christians simply because they will not champion the cause that they have established as their own bias. It is the engagement of such defiling attitudes and conversations that have cut so many off from receiving the divine intervention (blessing) of God. The more ‘human’ the attitude and response, the less we receive from the Holy Spirit within.

This COVID era has provoked us all. But it is not reserved for ‘The Covid issue’. It is unrighteous legislations, controversial decisions, theological debates, and issues of morality.

Christians have been swept up in theories and are buying into the many and varied offences that abound. Debates and angry social media statements have gladdened the heart of the devil and saddened the heart of our Father. Christian is divided against Christian, and all try to justify their anger and pride with the claim that it is ‘their personal conviction’. 

We state that we ‘have our rights’, that it is ‘only human’. Exactly! It is the fruit of non-surrendered flesh (in that moment). It is not the overflow of Father’s Spirit and intention from within. The Holy Spirit comes to bring humility and unity, Satan comes to bring anger and division. 

My friends, if a conviction is forged within us by a word from our Father it will, undeniably, show the fruit of HIS Holy Spirit. But I feel a deep cry from God’s heart that He has had enough of those who claim to represent Him showing the same attitudes (or worse) than the unsaved community around them.

We have all needed to repent of such moments. Myself, more than once.

With every ounce of love from His heart and mine, I urge us all to no longer allow our purity (uncomplicated beauty and humility) of spirit to be robbed. In so doing, we allow ourselves to be robbed of Father’s empowering grace and miraculous Holy Spirit working in us and through us. His ‘Kingdom’ ceases to operate in us when our heart becomes a hostile environment.

I urge you to read Matthew 5:1-12.

My prayer: “Father! Rid my heart of judgement against a brother / sister. Open my eyes each new day to see the beauty and wonder of your own intention and flow through me in your inexhaustible supply of humility, love, forgiveness, grace and mercy. For in such, those around us will wonder at YOUR wisdom revealed through our fully surrendered hearts.”

Please pass this word on.

Love to each and all,

David.

A United Voice

A United Voice

A united voice is powerful, whether it is for good or it is for evil. The Bible gives us a clear and contrasting example of both.

THE TOWER OF BABEL

In Genesis chapter 11 we read the story of the Tower of Babel. The starting point for this story was that ‘the whole world had one language and a common speech’ (vs 1). This was God’s intention and it was a good thing. But then man’s desire for self perverted God’s intention.

Genesis 11:4 (NIV) Then they said, “Come, let us build ourselves a city, with a tower that reaches to the heavens, so that we may make a name for ourselves; otherwise we will be scattered over the face of the whole earth.”

There is so much power in a united voice, as we can see by God’s response.

Genesis 11:6-7 (NIV) The Lord said, “If as one people speaking the same language they have begun to do this, then nothing they plan to do will be impossible for them. Come, let us go down and confuse their language so they will not understand each other.”

So, God stopped the building of this tower by confusing the language of the people and scattering them all over the earth.

However, the New Testament gives us a very different and wonderful example of the power of a united voice.

THE DAY OF PENTECOST

On the day of Pentecost, the disciples were all together in one place out of obedience to what God had told them to do. This is such a different reason for their unity than the people at the Tower of Babel. And so God blessed them with the baptism of the Holy Spirit.

Acts 2:4 (NIV) All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them.

The people at the Tower of Babel were trying to build from earth to heaven to make a name for themselves. The people on the day of Pentecost had heaven invade earth, and it was for the spreading of the good news of the name of Jesus Christ!

Everything that happens on earth finds its origin in language, whether it is for good or it is for evil.

In the times we live in, certain people are taking over legislative rule because they have one language and are standing together with a united voice. These people have the same spirit that we see at Babel which means confusion by mixture. The result is an increasingly confused society that is stepping away from the plans of God.

However, it is the church of Jesus Christ that is called to have the greatest united voice. The sad reality is that the church is at risk of losing the battle for influencing society because we have gone quiet and we do not have a clear united voice. If nothing was impossible to the united people at Babel, how much more for the united people of God?

It’s time for the church to find her voice again; a united voice of uncompromising truth! This is what the Holy Spirit yearns to do in us as the Body of Christ.

Listen to Steve’s message on ‘A United Voice’ on Apple Podcasts

 


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Influence or Success

Influence or Success

God is calling us to be people of greater influence. We are all called to be godly influencers, regardless of our calling or title. We cannot make disciples without influencing others! But we can easily lose our focus on influence and instead look towards success.

The world’s focus is on success, and this focus is on self.

Success means: the accomplishment of an aim or purpose, the attainment of popularity or profit, a person or thing that achieves desired aims or attains prosperity.

One of the evidences of success is growth; you have more of something and its bigger and better. This was not Jesus’ focus nor His example to us. It says in John 6:66, “From this time many of His disciples turned back and no longer followed Him.”

Jesus had many disciples and when He began to share some challenging thoughts, many left Him. His many followers got whittled down to twelve. Of those twelve, one repeatedly cursed and denied knowing Him, another was characterised by doubt, others were known to argue with each other about their importance and who would get the best seat in heaven, one was stealing from the organisations finances and ended up betraying Jesus and committing suicide. At His point of greatest need, they all deserted Him. He was not, as man would define it, a person of great success!

However, God’s focus is on influence, and this focus is on others. Consider these scriptures:

Matthew 16:24 “Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone would come after Me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow Me.”

Mark 8:36 “For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul?”

Matthew 20:28 “…the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for many.”

Influence means: the capacity to have an effect on the character, development, or behaviour of someone or something, or the effect itself, the power to shape policy.

While success equals gain, influence equals change. Jesus came to influence people’s lives, not to be a successful person. Leadership and influence are about us adding to others by giving, while success is about us achieving for ourselves by getting.

Jesus saw the problem in people’s lives, and He added the solution!

Jesus saw death so He came to add life. Jesus saw worthlessness so He came to add value. Jesus saw fear so He came to add love. Jesus saw worry so He came to add peace. Jesus saw hopelessness so He came to add hope.

Jesus literally changed environments, cultures and people’s lives by influencing them – by adding to them by giving.

The woman caught in adultery was feeling condemned. Jesus saw this and added acceptance, and by doing so, removed condemnation. The Samaritan woman at the well was feeling unworthy to be loved because five men had left her. Jesus saw this and added love and honour, and by doing so, subtracted unworthiness. After denying Jesus three times, Peter felt disqualified and unworthy. Jesus saw this and added acceptance and a fresh commissioning.

Like Jesus, we are always adding to or removing things from people’s lives. So, what are you adding to people’s lives and what are you subtracting? There were times in difficult conversations with others that I added frustration, anger and careless words, and by doing so, subtracted honour, respect and value. The reason I did this was because I felt I was right; therefore I focused on achieving for myself by getting the upper hand. I wanted to be successful in this argument.

But there have also been times when I added gentleness, honour, patience and respect. When my focus was on adding to others and selfless giving, I removed anger, frustration and hurt. I wanted to be influential in this conversation; to love them like Jesus does.

God is calling us all to be people of greater influence. So, in your everyday life, when you see a lack in people’s lives, add the opposite. When you see criticism, add some encouragement. If you recognise hopelessness, add some hope. Look to be influential, rather than successful. When you go up – that’s success. But when you help others go up – that’s influence.

Woman with bible seeking God's revelation

Divine Revelation

Where do we get our interpretation of the Word of God from? Is it divine revelation, or is it our own opinions and ideas? It is important to have a correct definition of interpretation and to realign to what God authors.

“What is your interpretation of this verse?” to most people would mean “What do you think this verse means?”

But this is not what the word ‘interpretation’ means.

‘Interpretation’ from the Oxford Dictionary is defined as:

  • The action of explaining the meaning of something.
  • An explanation or way of explaining.
  • A stylistic representation of a creative work or dramatic role.

‘Interpretation’ from the Oxford Thesaurus is defined as:

  • ‘the interpretation and application of the Bible’s teaching’.
    • explanation, elucidation, expounding, exposition, explication, exegesis, clarification, definition
    • simplification

Other words we see are: ‘meaning, analysis, decoding, translation, transliteration, and paraphrase’.

Here is the bottom line truth about ‘interpretation’:

‘Interpretation’ is about ‘our explanation’, it is not about ‘out opinion’.

Let me put it this way: If it’s not accurate to the original intention, it’s not an interpretation, it’s a distortion!

2 Timothy 2:15 says, Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.

We have substituted ‘Handle the Word of God correctly’ with ‘Interpret the Word of God as seems best to you’. Interpretation that comes from divine revelation is accurate because the Source is God. Interpretation that does not come from divine revelation is dangerous and erroneous because the source is us. We cannot handle the Word of God correctly outside of divine revelation from our Father in heaven. Our application is aligned to our interpretation, and this is why it must be founded in divine revelation.

We do what we believe, therefore, if our belief is incorrect, our doing will be incorrect. Trying to change what we do without changing what we believe will result in ongoing frustration and disappointment. True freedom is connected to right believing, and right believing is connected to divine revelation, not natural interpretation.

John 8:31-32 states, To the Jews who had believed Him, Jesus said, “If you hold to My teaching, you are really My disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

I fear too many Christians are coming up with their version of truth, and it can never lead to lasting freedom. Only God’s version of the truth can result in true freedom.

We must seek the truth.

We must pursue the truth.

We must deeply desire the truth.

We must position ourselves to receive the truth.

God may say different things, to different people, from the same scripture, but He will never contradict Himself from the same scripture.

It’s time to know THE TRUTH and to get our interpretation from divine revelation.