Monday, August 8, 2016

When it seems your dream is on hold!

“The 10 Absolutes of a Dream in the Making”

Yesterday was a day of flying for me from Nebraska to California.  As I was sitting at the airport, waiting, I couldn’t help but think about how hard sometimes it is to wait.  I don’t know anyone who likes to wait!  It is frustrating sometimes to know where you want to go and have a destination in mind but feel like getting there is taking much longer than you expected.  It was on a weekend in May 2012, as I was preparing to minister at a church in Houston, Texas, that I first heard the Lord say He would awaken a Remnant in America. It seems just like yesterday! Yet, I also know that we have yet to see the fulfillment of the vision given to us four years ago.  Have you ever felt like your dream was on hold or delayed? I know that Karen and I have. I truly believe that we are all on the cusp of seeing many dreams fulfilled. Yet, I know first hand that many times the unfulfilled vision can be so discouraging. This scripture has kept me steady through the waiting seasons of life!

”But these things I plan won’t happen right away. Slowly, steadily, surely, the time approaches when the vision will be fulfilled. If it seems slow, do not despair, for these things will surely come to pass. Just be patient! They will not be overdue a single day!" Habakkuk 2:3 (LB). 

I want to encourage you today. Many times it is in the delay of the vision that you were actually getting prepared to handle the weight of the promise! There are so many that are receiving this message that might feel as if God has forgotten you, or that the dream you possess will never happen. The Lord sent me to tell you that He hasn’t forgotten your promise, but rather the runway had to be lengthened to handle the magnitude of the promise when it lands!  In fact all through God’s Word  His messengers often had to wait to see their promises fulfilled. 
  • Noah waited 120 years from the time he started building the ark until it began to rain.
  • Abraham was told he would be the father of a great nation and didn’t have a child until he was one hundred years old.
  • God told Moses he would be the leader to lead his people out of four hundred years of slavery, but then made him wait in the desert forty years.  
  • Joseph spent years in prison before God raised him up and he became the ruler God wanted him to be.  
  • God had David anointed as king, but then David waited for years until he actually got to be king.       
Please allow me to share some personal revelation that I have learned over the years concerning awaiting the arrival of your promises.  I call this: 
”The 10 absolutes of a dream in the making!”

  1. Never allow your dream to become more important than the place you presently reside! There are so many that chase the dream and miss the important moments! (Ecc. 5:3)
  2. Serve where you are at and others won’t whisper when you arrive! It is the heart of servanthood that actually qualifies you for promotion. (Matthew 23:12)
  3. God’s timing demands trust (Prov. 3:5-6)! The calling of God…. Without the timing of God…. Will result in the absence of God! Don’t get ahead of God it is much safer if He is leading. God is not slow in keep his promises (2 Peter 3:9), but remember Kairos does not always line up with Chronos! 
  4. It is in the waiting that you learn to be content with what you always took for granted. That is a sign that God is about to bless you! (Is. 40:29) Remember: Delay is not denial! 
  5. If the dream was easily obtained by you then you would have never learned the power of activating your faith. (Hebrews 11:1)
  6. You must protect the dream, by producing fruit of righteousness that you will eat upon when you arrive at your destination! (Phil. 1:11)
  7. If ever you must harm others to get to your dream you have now become someone’s nightmare. Keep the attitude of gratitude! (Phil 4:6)
  8. Don’t try to kick open doors that God has locked from the other side! Rejection is many times protection. (Revelation 3:8) If the dream was birthed by God then you must rely upon Him and not others to make it happen!
  9. When the man dies…. And the dream dies…. Then God is able to resurrect the man and the dream for His purpose. (John 12:24)
  10. If your dream doesn’t require you to change your wine skin along the way then you will leak all over your promises. (Matthew 9:17)
Remember, we all have to go through these waiting periods. Even Jesus waited for thirty years in the carpenter’s shop before setting out on His public ministry. I challenge you to stay grounded where you are at and let God work it out! Faithfulness is a sign that you still trust the one who knows your ending from your beginning (Isaiah 46:10)! The greatest tragedy that can befall God’s messengers is when we settle for the consolation prize of good effort, but fail to stay in the race long enough to wear the victors crown!

James 1:12, “Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.” 

Monday, May 16, 2016

Are You In It For The Long Haul?

“Are You In It For The Long Haul?”

"Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith. Because of the joy awaiting him, he endured the cross, disregarding it’s shame. Now he is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne.” Hebrews 12:1-2 (NLT)

That verse in Hebrews is very special to us. It has always reminded us to keep going! I am reminded of a time of prayer when I heard the Lord speak to me, “Pat, never desire to hear the cheer from the crowd, but listen for the cry from the cloud!” Those that have finished their race are cheering us on! I truly believe that the greatest hindrance to the called is not whether or not they have open doors to their calling, but whether or not they are willing to finish the race that they have been called to. Recently, Karen and I were asked a very loaded question by a very dear friend. The question was: “What would you say is the one thing that is critical to surviving and thriving in ministry for the long haul?” This question caused Karen and I to move into a time of reflection, and as we responded via text to the question, we came up with “7 Keys to Longevity”:

Key 1: Shut some things and open others! What we mean by this is, learn to shut off your mind and trust Jesus; learn to shut away in the secret place; and be sure to shut the door on the enemy’s schemes such as fear, futility and failure spirits. But, always open the door of faith daily, open the Bible for revelation and open up to receive wisdom and direction from those who have earned the right to speak into your life.  

Key 2: Learn to be patient in your in-between season! It is in the waiting that true motives are revealed. Nothing can be trusted till it’s tested! A repetitive lifestyle of obedience leads to consistent seasons of growth!  You must prioritize personal prayer time and secret place encounters. Without a devotional life you will have an emotional life. 

Key 3: We must remember that God doesn’t not answer our tantrums or rants, but He honors obedience. Remain sober in all you do!

Key 4If you’re not a giver then you will never see lands that were waiting on a map called Faith to get you to your destination!

Key 5:  It’s a marathon and not a sprint!  You will burn out if you expect to accomplish all your goals overnight.  It's a process that has to develop and grow.  Anything birthed too quickly ends up being unhealthy. It’s about consistency and pacing yourself in order to be effective. There are many shooting stars that fizzle out when instead we need bright and shining stars in the night. (Phil. 2:15).

Key 6:  We must always have a healthy balance between our family and ministry. The first church was in a garden! When your family is out of whack and not healthy then ministry will begin to suffer as well because your heart becomes hardened and divided. Guard against the tyranny of urgent. Prioritize your family’s needs over others. We must always ask the question, “Does my family want to be pastored by me?” That question has always helped guide our decisions and actions. Your family deserves to see people that are real all of the time.

Key 7: Choose to live a life of no offense!  When offense comes make sure you have already forgiven in advance and then it can’t own you!

We pray that these “7 Keys to Longevity” bless you! Remnant we are not only called to start great things for God, but too always remember that medals are only awarded for the finishers! Don’t let the enemy trip you or detour God’s plan for your life! THERE IS A SEAT BESIDE THE KING AWAITING YOU!

Saturday, December 19, 2015

"The Lord will Shout in 2016!" Prophetic Message from Pat Schatzline

The year 2016 will be a year of reformation for the believer. I have never felt such a deep stirring to bring forth a message concerning a new year! For several days I have felt a deep impression from the Lord that I deliver a prophetic word for the year 2016. Each day I have sat on an old church bench that came from New London, CT. This old pew sat in a church that experienced the Great Awakening in the 1740’s. As I sat in the pew to pray I would hear over and over the Lord say to me, “Son, I will shout over my people in 2016!” I have never written a prophetic word concerning a new year; yet, I have personally been deeply grieved over the last several months. While I hold onto the vision of the Remnant Awakening I also know that time is running out. In 2015 we have seen much of the diabolical plan of Satan begin to reveal itself bolder than ever before. We saw marriage redefined by an over reaching court, Isis take more ground, the exposure of Planned Parenthoods selling of baby body parts, and many of the main stream Christian movements move closer towards the euthanasia of the Holy Spirit movement.  But, I am here to announce, “all is not lost!” Wake-up and prepare yourself for a new day.

As I have already stated, I heard the Lord say over and over to me, “Son I will shout over my people in 2016!” This stirred me so deeply, because I once heard a powerful quote by C. S. Lewis, “God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our consciences, but shouts in our pains. It is his megaphone to rouse a deaf world.”[1] I also began to study the places in the Bible where God shouts. Here is a verse that declares the Lord’s shout in Psalms 47:5-6, “God went up with a shout, the Lord with the sound of a trumpet. Sing praises to God, sing praises; sing praises to our King, sing praises.” (MEV)

I have personally heard this shout on several occasions. Once, was in the middle of the night in Kingman, AZ, when God awakened me in my hotel room. It was March 7, 2011, at 3:30 in the morning, and the Lord informed me to write my first book called, “Why is God so mad at me.” This interruption changed everything. I also heard the Lord say to me in July of 2014 the term “Ah Sovereign, Lord.” This became a message of repentance and also a chapter in my last book. My wife, Karen, also had this experience with her first book. I also believe for many of us that God waits till the stillness of the night to awaken us, because during the day we speak more than we listen. The Bible says in Psalms 78:65, Then the Lord awoke as one out of sleep, and like a mighty man who shouts because of wine.” (MEV)

I asked the Lord what it meant that He would shout over His people in 2016. He led me to Psalms 89:14-15, Righteousness and justice are the foundation of Your throne; mercy and truth shall go before Your presence. Blessed are the people who know the joyful shout. They walk, O Lord, in the light of Your presence.” (MEV)  The shout of the Lord is “joyful” to those who know His ways! I then heard Father say, “I have heard the cries of the righteous and He is declaring respite for His children. My shout will cause the enemy to coward and take refuge from my glory.” Then He said, deliver a message to my people.

The following is what I felt the Lord has told me to deliver to you:

2016 will be a year of reclamation, restoration, revolution and revival. The righteous will experience an unprecedented awakening of those whom have grown weary and tired in the battle. The righteous whom has lost their will to fight will suddenly be endued with power as never before. They will be given visions and dreams. They will suddenly find themselves with opportunities that have caused Heaven to smile at their obedience. Doors will swing wide open that no man can shut. God is handing out parchment and scrolls in prayer closets to those who know His heart. The parchments are announcements of what the Lord is about to do in the land, and these scrolls have hidden in them the keys to the kingdom of God. The Lord is clothing His righteous ones with humility and boldness. The Lord has reserved for Himself a Holy Remnant that know His voice. These are those whom have decided to go deeper and walk out His precepts. Favor will be upon their heads. They will suddenly find access to places once considered locked, and they will walk with supernatural influence.

There will be much civil unrest across America. The civil unrest will be caused by different political and social movements. It will look like the late 60’s. This will cause the righteous to stand up and say enough! God will awaken the mom movement. Mothers will stand up and declare leave our children alone. There passion will be to tell culture, government and politicians that they will not stand by and watch their children’s identity be stolen. If they listen to the Lord they will be more powerful than the suffrage movement. These women will not be led by celebrities, but by prayer warriors.

God will visit the churches that have and are declaring His holiness and the pure Gospel. They will experience supernatural growth. Even churches that many have said will never grow will suddenly become shining voices in their cities. Waves of His glory will roll through the services like a fog in the early morning. The services will be marked with repentance and miracles. There will be a mass exodus from the churches that do not preach the whole council of God. Prayer and intercession will once again mark houses of worship. God is causing new wells to spring up. Children’s ministries services will resound with the sound of worship, gifts of the Spirit and miraculous moves of God. There will be a renewed call to evening worship in places that are hungry for more. A new sound of worship will come forth from psalmists. This will be a sound that is birthed by Heaven. God will awaken older and retired ministers to realize that their job is not complete. They will be endued with power to once again proclaim God’s truth. Youth services will no longer be about the crowd or the party atmosphere, but rather sacred assemblies where God will ignite a fresh fire.

Righteous church leaders will suddenly find their physical and spiritual selves renewed with wings like eagles. They will be cured of disease and find themselves resting like never before. Mentally leaders will find that depression has lost its grip on their lives. They will brim with fresh vision. They will also see their households refreshed. Their marriages will glow with renewed love, intimacy and spiritual bonding. Their children will become enamored with the joy of the Lord. Prodigal children will return to the front doors to once again embrace the awesomeness of God. The Lord will bless their homes with uncanny finances. Many of these leaders will be reminded of prophesies and promises from the Lord as He brings them into fruition. These leaders will also write books birthed in the prayer closet.

Warning: For the leaders who no longer preach a message of conviction and truth, and those who declare their pre-packaged humanistic messages, their words will not go farther than the pulpit. It will be as if the people in the congregation have earplugs keeping them from hearing. These leaders are on trial in the court of God’s kingdom, and if not careful they will be found in contempt. Even now Father is visiting many of these leaders, and they are being given an opportunity to repent. If they do not repent they will find themselves staring at empty chairs in their palatial structures. Their places of leadership will be vacant. God is shouting over them.

God is visiting homes both Christian and secular. God is restoring broken marriages. Family altars and times of worship will be released in homes that have grown stagnate and comfortable. God is breaking off lethargy. There will be a renewed sense of conviction in homes that have allowed God to be locked outside. Prayer rooms will take over rooms reserved for guests. For the houses that are willing to restore God to His rightful place they will feel Him walking through their home. Healing will be in their water. Fathers and mothers must anoint their families. Worship will come from the bedrooms of children. Father’s will have their voices restored as leaders in homes where they were subjugated by culture. They will rise early and pray. Prodigal fathers and mothers will return to their place of leadership as the Lord’s grace calls to them.

The gatherings of the “unknowns” will take place across America. These gatherings will be planned and impromptu. They will be powerful movements that lead people to repentance and adoration. They will not be gatherings with well-known speakers or worship bands, but rather those whom have been awakened by the awe of the Lord will lead them. I believe that the Remnant Awakening will be a part of this.

In 2016 there will be a great awakening in parts of Asia, Europe, Africa, South America and parts of the USA. The enemies of the cross will rise against these movements and in return they will experience great calamity and disease. Their evil plans will be exposed in supernatural ways. Israel will once again turn back the tide of Islam, and its borders will be enhanced. America will experience several close calls by terrorists and all but one will be thwarted. This will cause our nation to once again cry out to God. A renewed sense of God’s sovereignty will over take many communities, and with that people will awaken to the lies of the secularist. God’s people will suddenly stand in opposition to the lies of the enemy. They will find themselves marching as if to war.

There will be many outbreaks of God’s glory on university and college campuses. Christian universities that no longer stand behind their creed and original plan will have opportunity to return to the Masters Plan! God will use the quiet and meek to be a powerful voice of freedom to those whom are blinded by the enemy.

There will also be a holy awakening of God’s love and deliverance within the Homosexual community. There will be those whom have experienced and know God’s presence that will be driven to their knees. God is fiercely jealous of His kidnapped children. He is answering the prayers of righteous parents who are demanding that their seed be returned.

USA Presidential Election: There will be a major surprise during the USA presidential election. Christians must pray for God to show them the right candidate. They must not listen to the hype, but ask for discernment. The church must pray for the Lord’s will to be done.

Finances: The global market will grow increasingly unstable. Yet, the Lord is releasing finances to the righteous. Conviction will fall upon many wealthy to sow into ministry. This will allow the churches and ministries that the Lord trusts to experience financial growth for the vision. The camels are coming to the places where they can drink fresh water. We will see the systematic reduction of large ministries that have lost their compass.

Lastly, the Lord declares, “that His shout will not be heard by all, but only by those whom have made themselves attentive to His ear!” He is close to the broken hearted and your cries are before Him.  The shout coming from Heaven is preparation for the final shout found in 1 Thessalonians 4:16, “For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first.” (MEV)

I challenge every believer to pray and fast! I believe that the Lord is giving us an opportunity to change our world. We know that in Psalms 103 it says, “The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in mercy.” (MEV) Yet, we also know that in Psalms 7:11, “God is a righteous judge, and God has indignation every day.” (MEV)

The Lord is shouting! Are we listening? Revelation 2:17, “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes I will give the hidden manna to eat. And I will give him a white stone, and on the stone a new name written, which no one knows except he who receives it.” (MEV)  We must awaken. It is a new day! The Remnant is rising!

Pat Schatzline
Began at 4:30pm December 18, 2015
Ended at 11:28 am December 19, 2015


Wednesday, August 28, 2013

"Emotions That Can Destroy God's Leader"

Let's take a walk down a well-worn path.  A path that many times can make or break God called leaders. Lets talk about the emotions that can destroy a leader. One of the greatest attributes that a minister must possess at all times is an ability to truly feel the pain of the hurting, distraught and weary. But, what about when we as leaders are the ones that are hurting? Who is there to walk with us? Many times in a ministry leadership role the safest thing to do is to just push forward. This also the most dangerous thing you could possibly do. I once heard it said, “Hurting people hurt people!” I used to say when I pastored, “I wish someone would call and give me the same advice and counsel I give to people when they are hurting! Alas, most of the time that simply wasn’t a reality. The fact of the matter is that most in ministry deal with great hurts, and they have had to learn to bare their own burden. Every great leader faces seasons where hope seems so far away. The writer of Proverbs said it best in Proverbs 13:12 (NIV), “ Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life.” Most leaders are at any given time 15 minutes away from wanting to quit! Whether this desire to quit is caused from criticism, small crowds or just plain weariness it is an epidemic in ministry today. But I have learned that God never uses a man or woman that he can easily get rid of! My goal with this article is to simply to tell you to hold on! God is only as far away as your knees are to the ground. He is standing over you, around you, and beside you. In fact Jesus faced every emotion you could possibly have faced according to Hebrews 4:15. We must stop the epidemic of resignations and moral failure in the ministry. God has called you to finish strong!

You see the enemies number one goal is to not make you sin or fall away, but simply bring you to a place of ineffectiveness. The enemy knows your influence will diminish and you will essentially be removed from the battle. I say enough is enough. God didn’t call each of us to live in the darkness of pain, but rather be an example of true freedom and authority.

I often share at conferences how I personally dealt for years with what I call “a failure spirit.” This is the crippling emotion that usually comes from deep insecurity. It is a failure spirit that makes a leader feel as if he or she simply isn’t good enough to do the work of the Lord. I literally could speak to hundreds or thousands and go back to my home or hotel and feel like an absolute failure. I will never forget the time I heard a profound message from a well-known youth communicator named Jeanne Mayo. The title of the message was “God of the Dark Times!” This message helped to guide me on a journey to freedom. The scripture that she used as her premise for the message is still one of my favorite verses. Isaiah 50:10 (NIV) says, “Who among you fears the Lord and obeys the word of his servant? Let him who walks in the dark, who has no light, trust in the name of the Lord and rely on his God.”

One of my favorite characters in the bible is Elijah. Why? Not just because he was powerful in his faith. Not because he is the only man to ever ride a tornado to heaven,
But, also because I feel he best represents what a leader feels when they are at the end of themselves. By the way the end of your self is usually the beginning of God! Elijah understood a simple fact in ministry and that is people will always love your anointing, but they wont be able to handle your humanity. Many leaders I know always seem to be in a battle. Maybe that battle is with people or groups, or maybe the battle is caused from within. James 4:1, “What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don't they come from your desires that battle within you?”

The story of Elijah is significant. He had just had an unbelievable victory. He had called fire down on the prophets of Baal (I Kings 18:40). This day was definitely a “win” for him. If this was today, he probably would have sent a newsletter to the whole world with pictures and testimonies. Yet, how is that a leader can walk out of the greatest accomplishment and then suddenly find himself living in a dark cloud? The bible says in I Kings 19:1-4 Elijah gets word that Jezebel wants to kill him. So Elijah ran for his life. In fact he even became suicidal!  In I Kings 19:4b he says, “I have had enough, Lord,” he said. “Take my life; I am no better than my ancestors.”  Elijah was at the end of his rope and was ready to give up! He is not alone! Check out these statistics. This desire to quit on Gods call is even prevalent today amongst Gods chosen leaders:

   1500 pastors leave the ministry each month due to moral failure, spiritual burnout, or contention in their churches.
   70% of pastors do not have a close friend, confidant, or mentor.
   56% of pastors’ wives say they have no close personal friends. 
   50% of pastors' marriages will end in divorce. 
   70% of pastors constantly fight depression[1]

These statistics are startling. It is said that all great leaders have great highs and great lows. The enemy wants to keep you in the darkness!  If the enemy can sedate you long enough to keep you from awakening to his attack then he wins. God has ordained your days, but then life exposed you to insecurity, fear and hurts. I must remind you that God has promised in his word that he can deliver you. You deserve to be a healthy leader. Your family deserves a healthy leader. Believe it or not God anointed you with flaws.

There are three emotions that can destroy a leader:
1. Depression- This emotion has the ability to cripple even the greatest leader. It can come in like a cloud. It overwhelms a leader to the point that they are crippled. Psalms 88:15, “From my youth I have been afflicted and close to death; I have suffered your terrors and am in despair.” When we feel as though we do not matter, and we feel like we can’t accomplish anything depression can take root! Depression is a blinding emotion! Find your hope again! Colossians 1:13 (NIV), “He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love.” The darkness always ends!
I must remind you that darkness never lasts forever. Ps 139:11-14, “If I say, "Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me," even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you.  For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” God knew you before anyone knew you! He hasn’t forgotten you. Just as he knit you together in the womb he can knit you back together today.  What you must understand is that there is a war to stop your future. Hope is your greatest weapon against depression. God can restore your hope. God will restore your hope in the darkest hour. Psalms 25:3-5, “No one whose hope is in you will ever be put to shame  4 Show me your ways, O LORD, teach me your paths; 5 guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long.”

2. Insecurity- This emotion has the ability to rob a leader of their God authority. Hurts and injustice can bring a strong leader under the control of this deceiving emotion. Insecurity can cause a leader to believe people are out to get them, or they simply do not matter to others. Psalms 30:6, “When I felt secure, I said, “I will never be shaken.” Insecure people are dangerous people, because many times they will do whatever they can to find security. We must remember the one who called us is always able to deliver us! Get your mind back on him! Col 3:1-4, “Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.” Let God restore your security! Think on things above! Remember, Romans 8:6, “The mind of sinful man is death, but the mind controlled by the Spirit is life and peace; “

3. Fear- When a leader lives in fear they lose all joy for life! We all know how controlling fear can be. I have battled this in ministry! I once had to be delivered from the fear of flying. This was a major issue since I fly nearly every week. I have met great leaders who suffer from panic attacks. Fear has the ability to create havoc out of thin air. A preconceived mind set of disaster or offense can destroy or cripple you! Jesus gave us a promise in Luke 21:14-15, “But make up your mind not to worry beforehand how you will defend yourselves. For I will give you words and wisdom that none of your adversaries will be able to resist or contradict.” God can restore your peace! Can I tell you that if you are fearful of losing something you truly don’t posses it! Remember what Paul told his spiritual son Timothy in II Timothy 1:7, “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” You are too important and valuable for these emotions to control you. God has amazing plans and dreams for you. My wife once told me, “It is impossible to have compassion without first having pain!” This is your moment to rise up and lead. What you have been through is a great indication of who you are called too. If you have walked through these emotions now it is time to heal others. But first you have to get a plan for the next time the attack comes.

Elijah eventually got free of his moment of despair. How? I Kings 19 showed us a plan that worked for Elijah. I believe this plan will work for you and I as well.

The Elijah Plan for Emotional Restoration:
1. Lay down/Rest -1 Kings 19:5, “Then he lay down under the tree and fell asleep. All at once an angel touched him and said, "Get up and eat."

2. Get up and Eat- 1 Kings 19:6, “He looked around, and there by his head was a cake of bread baked over hot coals, and a jar of water. He ate and drank and then lay down again.
7 The angel of the Lord came back a second time and touched him and said, "Get up and eat, for the journey is too much for you."

3. Go on a journey for God- 1 Kings 19:8, “So he got up and ate and drank. Strengthened by that food, he traveled forty days and forty nights until he reached Horeb, the mountain of God.”

4. Find a cave- 1 Kings 19:9-10, “There he went into a cave and spent the night. And the word of the Lord came to him: "What are you doing here, Elijah?"
10 He replied, "I have been very zealous for the Lord God Almighty. The Israelites have rejected your covenant, broken down your altars, and put your prophets to death with the sword. I am the only one left, and now they are trying to kill me too."

5. Get in His presence- 1 Kings 19: 11-13, “The Lord said, "Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by." Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. 12 After the earthquake came a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper. 13 When Elijah heard it, he pulled his cloak over his face and went out and stood at the mouth of the cave. Then a voice said to him, "What are you doing here, Elijah?"

6. Talk to God- 1 Kings 19:14, “He replied, "I have been very zealous for the Lord God Almighty. The Israelites have rejected your covenant, broken down your altars, and put your prophets to death with the sword. I am the only one left, and now they are trying to kill me too."

7. Use your anointing- 1 Kings 19:15-16, “The Lord said to him, "Go back the way you came, and go to the Desert of Damascus. When you get there, anoint Hazael king over Aram. 16 Also, anoint Jehu son of Nimshi king over Israel, and anoint Elisha son of Shaphat from Abel Meholah to succeed you as prophet.”

8. Find your disciple- 1 Kings 19:19-20, “So Elijah went from there and found Elisha son of Shaphat. He was plowing with twelve yoke of oxen, and he himself was driving the twelfth pair. Elijah went up to him and threw his cloak around him. Elisha then left his oxen and ran after Elijah. "Let me kiss my father and mother good-by," he said, "and then I will come with you." "Go back," Elijah replied. "What have I done to you?" So Elisha left him and went back. He took his yoke of oxen and slaughtered them. He burned the plowing equipment to cook the meat and gave it to the people, and they ate. Then he set out to follow Elijah and became his attendant.”


Thursday, April 19, 2012

The Ministers New Clothes!

I have such a tough time keeping up with the fads of being a youth communicator, conference speaker, and church revivalist. I find myself at Buckle, and Abercrombie looking for the coolest, trendiest, thinnest looking, most uncomfortable clothes so I can be the guy on stage I am expected to be. Boy, do I miss cargo pants! In the day of skinny jeans, and small v-necks! And what makes matters worse is that I hate shopping! Thank goodness Karen has me covered on that!

Why cant we be like the Israelites? Their clothes didn’t wear out!
Nehemiah 9: 21 (NIV), For forty years you sustained them in the wilderness; they lacked nothing, their clothes did not wear out nor did their feet become swollen.

No wonder they didn’t go into the promise land. The men didn’t want to have to shop for clothes!

In ministry it is so easy to be dressed sharp and yet naked on stage!
God has called us to look different! I am not speaking of what we actually wear, but more concerning our spiritual image!

Isaiah 61:10, 
I delight greatly in the LORD; my soul rejoices in my God. For he has clothed me with garments of salvation and arrayed me in a robe of his righteousness, as a bridegroom adorns his head like a priest, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.

Every leader fears over exposure to the reality of how your really dressed!
I have prayed more than once: “Please Lord, Don’t let them see the real me. The real me is tired, weary, and at times very carnal. Lord please cover my nakedness. Clothe me God with righteousness!”

So often we get dressed for the world and forget to be clothed to meet the savior!

Remember when Ruth went to meet Boaz- She got herself ready to meet her kinsmen redeemer.

Ruth 3:3, 
Wash, put on perfume, and get dressed in your best clothes. Then go down to the threshing floor, but don’t let him know you are there until he has finished eating and drinking.

Look at what happen when Noah was seen Naked:
Genesis 9:20-22 (NIV), Noah, a man of the soil, proceeded[a] to plant a vineyard. 21 When he drank some of its wine, he became drunk and lay uncovered inside his tent. 22 Ham, the father of Canaan, saw his father naked and told his two brothers outside.

I will come back to Noah and his sons at the end of this teaching, but I want to plant a seed that every leader ends up naked at some point. Every leader finds themselves uncovered and others get to see what is hidden under the leaders armor!

Nakedness is always a metaphor for a spiritual state.

God is looking to clothe us with His blessings!
Psalm 3:8
(msg), Real help comes from God. Your blessing clothes your people!

I. Adorned with self!
So many leaders hear the words: I love your mantle! You’re the man! You are Gods chosen! We twitter how great we are! We facebook our newest message! We promote our ideas. We declare we are voice to a generation. Yet, we rarely get honest about our own spiritual state.

Joel declares it is time for a change:
Joel 2:13-14, (msg) “Change your life, not just your clothes. Come back to God, your God. And here's why: God is kind and merciful. He takes a deep breath, puts up with a lot, This most patient God, extravagant in love, always ready to cancel catastrophe. Who knows? Maybe he'll do it now, maybe he'll turn around and show pity. Maybe, when all's said and done, there'll be blessings full and robust for your God!”

Recently, I was with a dear friend in Ohio ministering. We were sharing how easy it is to be fooled by our own success!

He began to remind me of story I had heard years ago.

The story is called the “Emperors New Clothes” that is why I have called this blog: "The Ministers New Clothes!"

There once was an emperor who lived his life to wear the fanciest clothes he could buy. It so consumed him that he never focused on his Kingdom. He never worried about protecting the kingdom, the advancement of intruders, or the business of an emperor!

One day two fakes came to the gates of the city. They declared they the best clothes a Emperor could wear. They were brought to the emperor. One before him they shared how they could make the most beautiful clothes ever made for a large sum of money and gold. They said the secret to their clothes was two things: Only the smartest could see the clothes, only those who belonged in their positions could see the invisible clothes.

The Emperor said please I beg you make me the clothes. The two acted is if they were making the clothes. They continued to ask for more money as they worked in secret at their imaginary loom. The king sent advisors to see the clothes. When the fakes showed the invisible clothes to the Emperors advisors they bragged and declared aren’t they beautiful. Of course the advisors couldn’t see the clothes, but in fear of not being smart or not belonging in their position they told the emperor the clothes were just amazing. Finally, the Emperor was invited to see the clothes, but he also could not see the clothes. As the fakes acted is if they were putting the clothes on him everyone saw how naked the emperor was. Yet, the emperor dare not utter that he couldn’t see the clothes or else it would mean he was not smart, and he didn’t belong in his position. Naked the emperor went before the people. The people knew the rules about the clothes and so they cheered as if they could see the clothes. Yet, as the naked emperor led a parade for his new clothes a little boy screamed out, but he is naked!
There is so much to learn from this metaphorical story!
In ministry we can become just like the Emperor.

Is it possible:
  • To be so self indulgent that you refuse to realize when your naked?
  • To have people around you that are so worried about position that they wont be honest with you.
  • To be so wrapped up in image that you ignore the kingdom?
  • To be so overwhelmed with self that your fear of failure never allows those around you to se the real you?
  • To be so self absorbed that the enemy can deceive you into purchasing an identity that leaves you nude?
  • That is the midst of your parade people are singing your praises while the children see the real you?
  • The Emperor bought into the lie that was above the ability to be transparent. 
  • Therefore, he ended up naked!

II. Our approach must change!
There is a stirring in my heart for a cleaning up of the priesthood.
We have created such an image that if we fall the people will just move on to a new celebrity.

The world wants priests that look like them, act like them, and even lead like them.

In John 18: 40- The people declared Give us Barabbas- Remember, the people didn’t want Jesus, but instead they wanted a murderer. No not him! Give us Barabbas! Give us somebody that looks like us. He is much easier to look at than Jesus. Because Jesus reminds us what we should be, while Barabbas gives us the excuse to say- I’m not that bad.

The church has become the talk show! We no longer guard the treasure of the call! We must grab the overwhelming Grace of God!

1 Timothy 6:20-21, (message) "And oh, my dear Timothy, guard the treasure you were given! Guard it with your life. Avoid the talk-show religion and the practiced confusion of the so-called experts. People caught up in a lot of talk can miss the whole point of faith. Overwhelming grace keep you!

We stand and declare what we are, because we can no longer share from the revelation of who He is!

Job 40:10
 Then adorn yourself with glory and splendor, and clothe yourself in honor and majesty.

We live in a generation where we have now created superstar leaders that we have exalted higher than God.

I am amazed at how when we look upon a stage we see the shimmering armor of Modern Day Knights, and yet they never allow us to get close enough to see the scarred areas of battle!

King David’s Fall from Grace- I am reminded of King David’s mighty fall. In II Samuel 11 he had become so isolated that while everyone was off at battle he hid himself in his ivory castle as sin approached and pounced on him. In his brokenness he would cry out to be made new.

Psalm 51:4-6 (message bible), “You're the One I've violated, and you've seen it all, seen the full extent of my evil. You have all the facts before you; whatever you decide about me is fair. I've been out of step with you for a long time, in the wrong since before I was born. What you're after is truth from the inside out. Enter me, then; conceive a new, true life.”

Do you think maybe David fell because at one point he forced another leader to be naked?

Remember, when David cut off Sauls robe while Saul was in the cave most likely using the restroom?

1 Samuel 24:4-7 (NIV), The men said, “This is the day the LORD spoke of when he said[b] to you, ‘I will give your enemy into your hands for you to deal with as you wish.’” Then David crept up unnoticed and cut off a corner of Saul’s robe. 5 Afterward, David was conscience-stricken for having cut off a corner of his robe. 6 He said to his men, “The LORD forbid that I should do such a thing to my master, the LORD’s anointed, or lay my hand on him; for he is the anointed of the LORD.” 7 With these words David sharply rebuked his men and did not allow them to attack Saul. And Saul left the cave and went his way.
David of course repented, but it is said that Saul’s backside was uncovered when he came out the cave. Humiliated, Saul humbled himself. I wonder if the part of the robe that David cut off represented his own covering that was now gone and could have protected him on the night he fell into sin?
16 years old- I am reminded of praying one morning: God took me back in my mind to the place where I cried out for the anointing at age 16. He then said, “Pat, if you play with the anointing an abuse it I will find another 16 yr old crying out and give it to him”

Yet, the longer I am in ministry I have realized that with each situation that is sent to distract or even invited in to disrupt I have a choice to either add to my armor or remove a piece of armor!

Yet, so many of us our naked and no will tell us the truth.

Like the emperor everyone can see our nakedness, everyone knows we are making a full of ourselves, but out of fear for position or intellect those around us stay quiet!

III. We must get dressed as priests again!
Psalm 132:16
I will clothe her priests with salvation, and her faithful people will ever sing for joy.

The bible has much to say about how we should dress spiritually.

Ecclesiastes 9:8, 
Always be clothed in white, and always anoint your head with oil.

The white represents the call to purity, innocence, and cleanliness. We are called to be clothed different than the world.

In fact it is when Adam and Eve sinned that God found it important to cover their nakedness.

Genesis 3:21
, The LORD God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them.

Psalm 30:11
You turned my wailing into dancing; you removed my sackcloth and 
clothed me with joy.

Look at how Solomon describes the proverbs 31 woman:

Proverbs 31:25
, She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come.

God is calling His people to get dressed again! Remember what he said to the Laodicean church?

Revelation 3:18 (message), "Here's what I want you to do: Buy your gold from me, gold that's been through the refiner's fire. Then you'll be rich. Buy your clothes from me, clothes designed in Heaven. You've gone around half-naked long enough. And buy medicine for your eyes from me so you can see, really see.
God is calling His leaders back to transparency and purity. We must not ignore those around us who can tell us when we are naked.

There is a stirring for the Samuels to arise!

The John the Baptist that will wear the clothes that hurt!

The Jeremiahs that will role around in mud in order to be baptized as priests.
God created us in the secret place. There we were naked before Him! Leaders that do not visit the secret place forget when it is important to wear clothes!
Revelation 16:15
, "Keep watch! I come unannounced, like a thief. You're blessed if, awake and dressed, you're ready for me. Too bad if you're found running through the streets, naked and ashamed."

IV. Give us Sons and Daughters that will cover our nakedness!
Remember, Noah and His sons? Noah gets drunk on his new vineyard.

The vineyard represents the land your called to take. It is so easy to get indulged and drunk off the fruit we have produced.

It is so easy to get drunk off our own success while our children stand outside our place of rest. We are all subject to self-depravation as we lock people out of our tents

Noahs son Ham see’s his dad lying naked. He begins to mock and laugh.

I have learned the people enjoy our anointing, but cannot handle our humanity.
Genesis 9:20-29 (NIV), Noah, a man of the soil, proceeded[a] to plant a vineyard. 21 When he drank some of its wine, he became drunk and lay uncovered inside his tent. 22 Ham, the father of Canaan, saw his father naked and told his two brothers outside. 23 But Shem and Japheth took a garment and laid it across their shoulders; then they walked in backward and covered their father’s naked body. Their faces were turned the other way so that they would not see their father naked. 24 When Noah awoke from his wine and found out what his youngest son had done to him, 25 he said, “Cursed be Canaan! The lowest of slaves will he be to his brothers.” 26 He also said, “Praise be to the LORD, the God of Shem! May Canaan be the slave of Shem. 
27 May God extend Japheth’s[b] territory; may Japheth live in the tents of Shem, and may Canaan be the slave of Japheth.” 28 After the flood Noah lived 350 years. 29 Noah lived a total of 950 years, and then he died.

Dad wakes up! In Gods mercy he will always awaken his leaders from the drunken stupor of our self intoxication.

Noah- who represents the father of the newly created humanity. All that is left on earth is Noah and his family.

Ham made fun of his dad- Now Noah in anger curses Hams son Canaan.
When Noah awoke and "knew what his younger son had done to him", he pronounced the curse, not on Ham, but on Ham's son Canaan. Canaan was condemned to be a "servant of servants" to the other sons of Ham, as well as a servant to Shem and Japheth.

But the bible says that Shem and Japheth so honored their father they went in backwards so as to not see their dad, and they covered his nakedness.
We must have those around us that will still honor our nakedness and cover us in our season drunken sleep.

Hams act of selfishness and disrespect caused his son to be a slave to everyone.
Ham’s disrespect of the Father caused his own son to serve the two who knew how to cover the nakedness of a leader!

Why did God curse Ham and instead curse his son Cannan?

Because, God had already blessed the dad in Genesis 9:1, and would not revers it. In other words what you do today to protect, and honor a leader determines the blessing your children receive.

What have learned? No leader is above ending up naked in front of the congregation, but hopefully we will have sons and daughters that will cover our nakedness.

Today, we must dress ourselves in the Full armor of God!