And He said to them, "It is written,'My house shall be called a house of prayer,’…”
Matthew 21:13 NKJV

Thursday, December 30, 2010

As We Went To Pray

Tim Franklin
Freedom Christian Center

Acts 16:16 Now it happened as we went to prayer…. Isn’t it fascinating the number of things that happen in scripture on the way to prayer. Now it happened! Say those three words to yourself out loud. Now it happened! Those are three exciting words! They imply movement, are filled with action, and resonate with a “kairos” moment—a moment in time where God’s timetable and plans intersect with man’s plans. Paul and Silas were on their way to the place of prayer—when “it” happened. Paul and Silas were not your typical, stay at home and pray, kind of guys. They understood the power of corporate prayer and gathering together with other Saints to call upon the name of the Lord.

In Luke 9:28 “Now it happened/came to pass…” This time, Jesus is taking Peter, James and John up on the mountain to pray, and suddenly—Jesus is transfigured! Elijah and Moses appear with Jesus and God audibly speaks the disciples. Not a bad day, for just being on your way to prayer.

Acts 3:1 and following, Peter and John are on their way to the temple to pray at the ninth hour. Who do they meet, but a lame beggar. They do not have any gold to help the man, but what they did have they gave to him, and the lame beggar began running and leaping and praising God. All this happened on the way to prayer.

The early church was so alive with the Presence of God that ‘things’ happened on the way to prayer. What we have in these accounts are men who were deeply connected to the power of prayer, particularly corporate prayer. The walk to prayer, did not inconvenienced them. They did not have more important things on their calendar--because prayer was important. They knew they could pray at home, alone, in quiet. But, they deeply understood what happens when men pray together, so they choose to go to prayer. Lev 26:8 Five of you shall chase a hundred, and a hundred of you shall put ten thousand to flight your enemies shall fall by the sword before you. NKJV Prayer increases exponentially in power when we pray together.

Maybe, when corporate prayer meetings are once again filled with people seeking God, then our corporate gatherings will be filled with the Presence of God. Maybe, when Saints look forward to praying together things will happen on the way to prayer.

Friday, December 17, 2010

SPECIAL BLOG POST - A prophetic picture

A Prophetic Picture by Kim Nicholas from Our Father’s House ,

Filled With Gold Bars

At our December MyHop meeting we were praying that the faith of God’s people would prevail in the middle of financial adversity. During our time of prayer and intercession the Lord gave Kim Nicholas, from Our Father’s House, a prophetic picture. She saw a picture of a jeep completely filled up on the inside with gold bars. As you looked through the windows of the jeep all you could see was the gold that was inside.

In the natural gold speaks of provision. A jeep full of gold bars would certainly meet our need and more. In the spiritual, gold speaks of God’s glory. Again, there would be an ample supply of God’s glory. The jeep itself is a vehicle built for rough terrain.

Kim felt the Lord was saying that there would be a rough ride ahead in the natural. There would be trying times that we would go through as a nation and as a people. However, there would be ample provision for our earthly needs as well as an abundant supply of Gods’ glory to take us through any and all circumstance that we might face.

As Paul said in Philippians…“And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus” (Phil 4:19).

Whatever difficulties we might face, we can be assured that there is no limit to Gods’ supply. He will meet all of our needs “according to His riches in glory.”

The Psalmist writes in Psalm 115:11: “You who fear the Lord trust in the Lord; He is their help and their shield.” Today God is our help and shield just like He was when the Psalmist penned these verses. The Psalmist goes on and in Psalm 115;13 he says:“He will bless those who fear the Lord, The small together with the great.”

God is revealing His heart towards us so we can be strong in the days ahead.

Have you been able to put your full trust and confidence in the Lord?

Do you see God, in everyday life’s circumstances as your “help” and your “shield”?

Friday, December 3, 2010

Compassion and Miracles

Pastor Gary Stebbins, Church in the Rock - Melbourne

I find myself again reading in the Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John) where much insight can be gained by looking at the life of Jesus Christ. In Matthew 14 we find the story of Jesus feeding five thousand men and women with a few loaves of bread and a couple of fishes. Jesus had been teaching a large number of people on a hillside. As the day grew later the disciples suggested to Jesus that it was time to send the people home because there was no food to feed them.

Jesus response was so characteristic of who He is. He said, “They do not need to go away.” Jesus is not into sending people away. Earlier in this passage it says that Jesus “felt compassion for them and healed their sick.” Jesus’ heart was and is to minister to people the life and love of God. It says that the place they were in was a “desolate place.” Many people today are in a desolate place and need a mighty touch from the God that has great compassion for them. His instructions to the disciples were, “You give them something to eat.” I believe Jesus’ desire is still what it was 2000 years ago, to minister to people through His disciples and followers.

In response to the disciples request to send the people away, Jesus instead has them sit down. He takes the few loaves and fishes that they have and, “looking up toward heaven,” He blessed the food and fed all 5000. The picture we see is Jesus looking up towards heaven in a physical sense and asking the Father to bless their meal. This was an outward picture of what Jesus had already done inwardly. I believe He had “looked up” toward His heavenly Father in the quietness of His own heart. Jesus never did anything He did not hear or see His Father doing. Out of His relationship with the Father, He knew it was the Father’s heart to minister to the people and to feed them. This was not an instantaneous decision that Jesus made. He had spent many hours praying and seeking the heart of the Father. Out of this relationship with the Father He was prepared for this moment. With eyes of faith He could see the Father feeding 5000 people.

As disciples of Jesus ourselves, we must learn to “look up toward heaven.” Not just as a physical act, but as a daily discipline, taking time to read and reflect on God’s Word, to pray, and to communicate with God regularly. Not just petitioning God, but spending time in His presence, becoming familiar with His heart.

Later on in this passage of scripture, after the people are fed and the disciples are sent away, Jesus “went up on the mountain by Himself to pray.” He had found the importance of spending time in the presence of the Father. It is in this place of “presence” that He developed the Father’s compassion for people and it is coming out of this place that He was able to minister God’s life to people.

What took place on that mountain side 2000 years ago was indeed a miracle in one sense. In another sense, it came out of a place of relationship with God, one developed by spending hours with Him “up on the mountain” praying. Many today live in a barren and desolate place and greatly need a touch from God. God is looking to empower those who will invest their lives in getting to know Him.

How about you?

Have you been to the mountain recently?

Do you “look up toward heaven” regularly?

The Father is waiting for us to come to Him so He can send us out into the world to be a witness and testimony of His incredible love.

Have you taken time to allow God to deposit in you His heart of compassion for people?

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Faith Trumps Worry

Tony Hauck
Church on the Rock - Melbourne

I’d had some fairly large concerns on my mind, the kind that weigh you down and make you want to give up. I’d spent about half an hour just walking, praying in the Spirit, and listening, but I hadn’t heard anything. Just when I was about to conclude that God wasn’t going to say anything to me, He started speaking. But He wasn’t answering my questions. He didn’t address anything I was worried about. Instead, He began speaking vision to me for an upcoming ministry opportunity.

As I was wondering why He was talking now, but ignoring my questions, He reminded me of the story of Elijah in I Kings 19. Elijah had just called down fire from heaven on Mt. Carmel, then fled from the threat of Jezebel to Mt. Sinai, where he was telling God about how bad things were and how he was the only one left serving Him (see verse 14). Romans 11:2-4 refers to this as the time Elijah interceded against Israel. In a weak moment he lost faith and saw things only from his human perspective. Basically he was ready to quit. So how did God respond? He gave Elijah something to do (three tasks to be exact), and reminded him that he wasn’t alone (I Kings 19:18). He changed Elijah’s focus and perspective. By giving him tasks God was restoring faith and vision, and not accepting his resignation.

So what was my take away? Don’t worry about those concerns I had. They’ll work out. Just focus on what God has for me to do. So I did. And they did.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Political Statement

This seems like the appropriate time for a political statement. The issues are complex, and I could write a lot about any one of them, but let’s keep it simple. Consider this verse:

Therefore the LORD said: "Inasmuch as these people draw near with their mouths And honor Me with their lips, But have removed their hearts far from Me, And their fear toward Me is taught by the commandment of men, Therefore, behold, I will again do a marvelous work Among this people, A marvelous work and a wonder; For the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, And the understanding of their prudent men shall be hidden." (Isa 29:13-14)

In this verse, inept leadership was a judgment from God against an apathetic nation. So if fools rule over us, who is to blame? I don’t think we have any idea of the power the church has to shape this nation, nor of the responsibility we bear. And while I’m all for being involved in the political process, that’s only part of the answer. The real solution is found in II Chronicles 7:14.

Put another way, the Chronicles verse tells us what happens when God’s people pray. The Isaiah verse tells us what happens when we don’t.

I must admit I’ve done my share of complaining about our current political situation. But I’m making it my goal that when I get to heaven it will be recorded that my cumulative prayer for our nation exceeded my complaints. If you can relate, I’ll see you at the prayer meeting.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

I Walked Among Crowds of Worshipers

Pastor Gary Stebbins
Church on the Rock - Melbourne

The introduction to Psalm 42 says that it was written for the choir director. Perhaps it was intended as a song expressing the cry of the human heart. “As the deer longs for streams of water, so I long for you, O God.” (Psa 42:1, NLT)

We live in a world that has become very sensual and the heart of man ‘longs after’ many things that this life has to offer. Can I say that my heart ‘longs after’ God more than the many other desires that I have? The psalmist goes on … "I thirst for God, the living God. When can I go and stand before him?” (Psa 42:2, NLT)

The writer of this Psalm not only ‘longs for’ God, but has an overwhelming desire to experience the very presence of God. “When can I go and stand before him?” There is no sense of shame or guilt, or even fear of standing before God, simply an overwhelming desire to experience the grace and love of God. God is a holy God who cannot tolerate sin, but He is also a God of great love and compassion.

“Day and night I have only tears for food, while my enemies continually taunt me, saying, "Where is this God of yours?" My heart is breaking as I remember how it used to be: I walked among the crowds of worshipers, leading a great procession to the house of God, singing for joy and giving thanks amid the sound of a great celebration! (Ps 42:3-4, NLT)

In the middle of the his despair, the writer gives us a picture of how much he enjoyed going up to the house of God to worship with other believers. These were times of great joy, filled with expectation at the thought of worshipping God together with others whose hearts also ‘long for’ Him.

As I read Psalm 42, my cry was, “God cause my heart to long for you more than for anything else that this life has to offer.” Not only that, “God cause me to desire to worship you with other men and women who love your presence.”

The more I make time in my life to pray and to read God’s Word, the greater the longing I find in my heart to know God. I also find a growing desire, not just for my own private times of prayer and worship, but a desire to worship God together with others. As I take time to attend prayer meetings and corporate times of worship, like the MyHOP meetings, I find my heart desiring to spend time praying and worshiping God with others. As King David said …
I was glad when they said to me, "Let us go to the house of the Lord.
(Ps 122:1, NLT)

We are saved as individuals but called to live life together with the community of believers. There is a growing expectation in my heart that as we continue to gather together for prayer and worship, we are going to see a great outpouring of God’s presence and power.

How about you? What longings do you find in your heart? Is your longing for God growing stronger than the many other longings you might have? How about your desire to gather together with others to worship God?

Monday, August 30, 2010

Liar, Liar

Tony Hauck, Church on the Rock - Mebourne

Satan is a liar. (I know, duh.) But have you ever considered what he most likes to lie about? The devil really doesn’t care that much about us, or attacking us. We’re just tools. The real attack is against the knowledge of God. God has promised the knowledge of the glory of the Lord will fill the earth. (Hab 2:14) Satan tries to suppress that. So you can go to church all you want and pretty much get left alone. It’s when you become the fragrance of the knowledge of God that the devil has to try to put a stop to it.

“Now thanks be to God who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and through us diffuses the fragrance of His knowledge in every place. “ (2 Cor 2:14)

So what does he lie about? Primarily, he lies to us about God; more specifically, about God’s character. He tries to get Christians to doubt God’s love, faithfulness, and wise leadership. “Did God really say…?” (Gen 3:1) is still his first, best weapon. He knows if he can get us to question God, we’ll get offended at God in difficult times. No more fragrance of the knowledge of the Lord.

This is why it’s so important to know the word, and to go by what God says about Himself, not our feelings or circumstances. And it’s critical that we trust His plan and methods as we near the end times. To do anything else isn’t just doubt; it’s calling into question God’s integrity.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Blessed Be The Name Of The Lord

Pastor Gary Stebbins
Church on the Rock-Melbourne

Faith is often a battle with our thoughts and our emotions. Our thoughts at times can be filled with unbelief and doubt, and our emotions can be driven by fear, anxiety, and hopelessness. God created us to be creatures that think and experience emotions. Our thoughts and our emotions are an important part of who we are. They help to define our personality and how we view and respond to life. However, as Paul says in 2 Corinthians 10:5, there is a place to “take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ” (NIV). There are times in our lives when we must struggle to bring our thoughts and emotions into alignment with God’s Word. It is in this struggle that we will grow in our faith.

I was recently reading in the book of Job. I cannot imagine the pain and suffering that Job experienced. At one point, after losing his children and much of his wealth, he “fell to the ground and worshiped.” He cried out to God and said, “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I shall return there. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away. Blessed be the name of the Lord” (Job 1:21). The word Job used for “blessed” means to kneel, to bless God as an act of adoration. In the middle of extreme difficulties Job remembered His God and reaffirmed his love for Him. This was an act of devotion and prayer as Job turned to God in his crisis. He was bringing his thoughts and emotions into captivity to bless and thank God for who He was and all that He had meant to Job over the years. Learning how to bless God and thank God, in any season of life, should be an important part of our prayer life. Turning to God in times of crisis builds our faith in God. Throwing ourselves at His feet in prayer and offering up our devotion to Him draws us close to God. When you walk through difficult times with other people, it can bind you together at a deep level. The same is true in our relationship with God as we allow Him to be a part of our difficult times. We can do this by offering to God our love for Him and expressing our thanksgiving for who He is and has been in our lives. Our hearts are united together with God in a deep and intimate way. He becomes not just a friend, but a “strong tower” and a “place of refuge” from the troubled times swirling about us.

The expression of devotion and thanksgiving to God through prayer is an important part of building our relationship with Him. When my heart aches, I have found much comfort in getting before God and offering to Him my love, devotion, and thanksgiving in prayer. I may not be able to make sense out of my situation in the natural, but I can find comfort and hope as I cry out to God in prayer. I always come away strengthened.

How about you? In difficult times have you been able to cry out to God in prayer and find comfort? What part has thanksgiving played in your prayer life and your relationship with God?

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Help! I Don’t Know What to Do!

Tim Franklin
Freedom Christian Center

Jesus declared in Mt 21:13, “My house, will be called a house of prayer.” We often focus on the prayer part of that passage, and we should. But think with me for a moment: Jesus is the one speaking, and His statement is “My House!” Wow! Jesus has a house! He has a dwelling place that has an identity and it can be found! It is called the House of Prayer. David initiated the House of Prayer under the leadership of the Holy Spirit. God wanted a house and He found a man to build it—David.

Prayer is not an option! Worship is not an option! These represent the place of encounter with the Living God! It was David who said, “I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go into the house of the LORD.”

What I often find in the House of Prayer are people who do not know what to do. Let me try to answer this: “What am I to do in the House of Prayer?”
  1. Intimacy. It simply means to engage God. In other words He has your attention and you have His. You can compare it to intimacy in a marriage. Intimacy in a marriage is when a couple engages each other. You have her attention, she has yours.
  2. Intercession. In its simplest form intercession is me finding/hearing what God is praying and then praying it back to Him. It is a powerful form of agreement in prayer. What is Jesus praying about? Hearing that prayer and praying it back to Him. The prayer targets we cover in our MyHOP gatherings are things that we as leaders feel like God is putting on our hearts to pray and we pray it back to Him.
  3. Antiphonal praying/singing. Many people get lost here! Because they are now singing they feel they are no longer praying. The power of antiphonally singing our prayers is that we are filling the bowls of heaven (Rev 5:8). We hear the worship team sing a prayer that has been prayed at the microphone. Most generally they repeat it several times in song format. During that time we who are engaging God begin to sing the same prayer. “Lord we delight ourselves in You!” One singer can sing that and 200 people can antiphonally sing the prayer back at them! Heaven hears! Instead of ‘one cup’ of prayer going into a bowl it now becomes 201 ‘cups of prayer’ going in the bowl.
  4. Devotion. Many times in the atmosphere of Corporate prayer, we simply soak/get immersed/or positioned in the Presence of God. Interesting spiritual dynamics are released when we gather corporately together to seek Him and declare His greatness. In a crowd, I can suddenly find myself alone with God—enjoying Him, or He enjoying me. In a crowd, I can be alone receiving revelation from Him for my family, my work, or ministry. In the corporate anointing we are stimulated to pursue God because we are in a room with a bunch of like minded people who going after Him.
  5. Dwelling. If His house is a House of Prayer, it is His dwelling. If we come with the mindset of entering His dwelling, not a church building, we then walk straight into the first two points on our list: intimacy and intercession. He lives forever to intercede and His love is eternal toward us!
There is plenty to do while in the House of Prayer if you know what you should be doing. If you feel lost in the House, follow the team; they are going somewhere and you will be glad you came along!

Friday, July 30, 2010

How do you respond to a prophetic word?

Pastor Larry Booth
Our Father's House, Satellite Beach, FL
July 30, 2010

Thus says the LORD of hosts: ‘Let your hands be strong, you who have been hearing in these days these words by the mouth of the prophets.’ (Zechariah 8:9a)

This is a beautiful passage of the Bible regarding the importance of the prophetic word in the life of believers. The response to the word given here is awesome. Let your hands be strong!!! The prophetic should motivate us, encourage us and even strengthen us to proceed with what GOD has spoken.

I believe we need to stay alert for what GOD is saying to the church today. This is an ongoing communication from GOD to HIS people. The word must be heard.

If I’m going to hear, I better learn how to listen!!!

Can I receive from more than one prophetic voice?
How do I test a prophetic word?
Interesting stuff!!! Think about it!!!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Persistent Faith

Tony Hauck
Church on the Rock, Melbourne
July 19, 2010

I had called a government agency to get information I really needed before taking a fairly long drive to said agency without knowing if I could accomplish my task. I had been on hold for about 20 minutes without actually talking to a human, and would have hung up much earlier if it hadn’t involved something important to someone I was trying to help. But I had things to do and couldn’t sit on hold all day. I had decided to hang up, and was just about to put the phone down when a person answered on the other end. And not just any person, but a nice and helpful person who got me the information I needed. I was off the phone two minutes later, mission accomplished. I was really struck that I had almost hung up and would have had to start over or find another approach. Twenty minutes wasted, and I’d never know I only had to hold on another few seconds. Now it was just time invested in an important task. I thought of a parable Jesus told.
Then He spoke a parable to them, that men always ought to pray and not lose heart, saying: "There was in a certain city a judge who did not fear God nor regard man. "Now there was a widow in that city; and she came to him, saying, 'Get justice for me from my adversary.' "And he would not for a while; but afterward he said within himself, 'Though I do not fear God nor regard man, 'yet because this widow troubles me I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming she weary me.'" Then the Lord said, "Hear what the unjust judge said. "And shall God not avenge His own elect who cry out day and night to Him, though He bears long with them? "I tell you that He will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will He really find faith on the earth?" (Luke 18:1-8 emphasis mine)
This parable is clearly a call to persistent prayer, implying some time before the answer, but notice how it ends with a faith question. Will we still be waiting “on the line” in faith for the answer when it comes? I wonder how many times I’ve “hung up” just when heaven was about to answer. And consider that she was asking for justice from an unjust judge. Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right? (Gen 18:25)

MyHOP is all about persistently asking the Righteous Judge to get justice for our region. Is that the cry of your heart?

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

As Was His Custom

Tim Franklin
Freedom Christian Center
July 7, 2010

Daniel 6:10 Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went home. And in his upper room, with his windows open toward Jerusalem, he knelt down on his knees three times that day, and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as was his custom since early days. NKJV

Oh, that the church in America would learn from Daniel! “AS WAS HIS CUSTOM…” (that sounds like Jesus.) A new law was written—No man shall bow to any other god or man except the king. It was endorsed by the King. It would be enforced by the authorities of the land. Daniel was not moved by this law. Daniel was not moved by the threat of death or imprisonment, or discomfort—Daniel was moved by his habit of prayer! Imagine that? A habit of prayer, established by years of the ‘custom of prayer’—THREE TIMES A DAY!

We are living in a time when the average American pastor is spending as little as 5-30 minutes a day in prayer depending on which source you read. It’s a day in which men’s knees are tender and their hearts are calloused. God is looking for a people so dependent on Him that their hearts are tender and their knees are calloused. Prayer is a powerful tool in the hands of a church that will embrace and use it. Yet, in the west, we have become soft and stopped praying when we have a ‘hang nail’ let alone a law like Daniel faced, that said you could not bow to another but the king. This is still the land of the free and the brave. Our president may not bow to our God or honor the National Day of Prayer, but that has nothing to do with our freedom to have a custom of prayer.

Ask yourself: “What will it take to stop me from praying?” To busy? To offended? To lazy? To afraid? To relaxed? To doubtful? Come on Brevard! We are better than this. The price of freedom has been paid. Jesus is His name! Let it be written of us in years to come… “They prayed as was their custom.”

Monday, June 28, 2010

Have you ever wanted more passion in your praying?

Pastor Larry Booth
Our Father's House
June 28, 2010

One of the best inspirations I’ve ever found to dial up my own passion for the things of the LORD is to see HIS passion at work!!!

Thus says the LORD of hosts: ‘I am zealous for Zion with great zeal; with great fervor I am zealous for her.’ (Zechariah 8:2)

GOD gets excited about things!!! The very language used in this text of the Bible speaks of white hot passion and zeal. The word for zeal literally means “to turn red in the face”. Imagine that…GOD gets so excited about Zion and about the city of Jerusalem that HE gets red in the face talking about it.

This is the same zeal that HE has for us. We hear it in HIS cry for Adam in the Garden of Eden. We hear it when Jesus cries out on the last day of the great feast and asks if any one is thirsty. We hear it in the last great invitation of the Bible in Revelation 22:17, And the Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let him who hears say, “Come!” And let him who thirsts come. Whoever desires, let him take the water of life freely.

So…the next time you’re a little low on passion for the things of GOD, ask HIM to give you a download of HIS zeal.

Monday, June 7, 2010

A Bad Day for Jesus

Pastor Tony Hauck, COTRM
June 7, 2010

What would you think if I began by telling you that three people we prayed for this Sunday got miraculously healed? Would you consider that a good service? Well, no one got healed this Sunday that I know of, probably like most Sundays in most churches. And that leads to my point. I was reading in Mark and two verses stood out to me.

Mark 6:5-6 "Now He could do no mighty work there, except that He laid His hands on a few sick people and healed them. And He marveled because of their unbelief. Then He went about the villages in a circuit, teaching."

I thought, we’d be ecstatic if a few sick people got healed. Do you know what that means? It means a bad day for Jesus is still more than most of our expectations. Does Jesus marvel at our unbelief?

So then Jesus went about the villages teaching. I guess that’s all He could do, since He could do no mighty works. I wonder if that’s why the church is so full of teaching and so lacking in power. Maybe that’s all we have faith for.

Well I don’t want to settle for just good teachings. I’m determined to stir myself up, raise my expectations, press in, and connect with the Jesus I read about in the New Testament.
Who’s with me?

Thursday, May 27, 2010

And Jesus said, "Come!"

Pastor Gary Stebbins, Church on the Rock - Melbourne
May 27, 2010

It is easy in this current season to be fearful and intimidated by any number of situations that we see going on in the world around us. Perhaps you are facing some serious challenges in your own life. I believe Jesus is saying, "Come!"

As we move into the summer months, I do not believe this is a time to drawback out of fear nor to embrace the summer months as the “lazy, crazy days of summer.”

In Mark chapter 8, we see Jesus ministering to over 4000 people in a desolate area. He felt compassion for them because they had been with Him for three days with nothing to eat. Jesus was very interested in the spiritual needs of people, but He also recognized their physical needs.

Jesus felt compassion for those who exerted the effort to go out to the wilderness and be with Him for three days, to sit under His teaching, and to experience His miraculous power. He could not minister to those who were not there. His compassion and ministry was extended to those who pursued Him, those who were present with Him in that desolate place.

In Matthew 14 we have another story where the disciples are in a boat crossing the Sea of Galilee. Jesus comes up to the boat walking on the water. One of the twelve disciples cries out to Jesus and says, "Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water." Jesus' response was "Come!" Peter gets out of the boat and walks on water with Jesus. He experienced something the other eleven disciples did not, because he made an effort to cry out to Jesus and was willing to step out in faith.

God always responds to those who make the effort to pursue Him and His presence. Those who did not spend three days with Jesus did not experience His compassion and provision. Those who remained in the boat and did not cry out to Jesus did not walk on water.

As I was praying this past week at early morning prayer , I felt God was saying that this was a “get out of the boat” season of time. I believe this is a season to cry out to God and ask Him to “command” us to “step out of the boat” so that we move into God's purposes for our lives and for the church in this season in which we live.

Are you ready to make every effort you can to pursue the presence of God and experience the fulness of His blessing and provision?

It is time to pray, to cry out to God.

Are you ready to ask God to command you to step out of your boat into His Kingdom purposes for your life?

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

What Motivates You?

Pastor Larry Booth - Our Father's House, Satellite Beach
May 18, 2010

“And this Gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to the nations, and then the end will come.” (Matthew 24:14)


I find myself being drawn toward reading the last several prophetic discourses of Jesus found in Matthew 24 and in Luke 21 on a regular basis. The graphic descriptions of the times in which we live are found in these texts of the Gospels and are motivators for me to pray and seek GOD with passion and intent. How about you???


With our American bent on extreme selfishness and self-centered living, most of us seem to need some kind of personal inconvenience or trouble to get motivated to pray and seek GOD. Does this sound familiar? Yes…we could say the circumstances and personal troubles can jump start our prayer life, but I believe a higher motivation should be the Word of GOD.

For more than 30 years now, my daily practice has been to spend time in God’s Word reading from both the Old Testament and the New Testament. Over the last few years, the prophetic portions of Scripture have tugged on my heart like never before in my life. I believe this is truly Spirit-led. The Holy Spirit wants us to be ignited and drawn into the season and hour in which prophetic Scriptures are leaping off the page and crying out like a trumpet blast to tell us…now is the time!!!


Monday, May 10, 2010

Have you taken you position on the wall?

Pastor Gary Stebbins -COTR-Melbourne, May 10, 2010

We are living in a critical time in the history of our nation. Our lives, our society, our nation, will be governed either by the Spirit of God or the spirit of darkness. There is no middle ground. We either serve the Living God or the prince and power of the air, which is Satan. We either allow Christ to rule our lives or the spirit of the antichrist will.

Children, it is the last hour; and just as you heard that antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have appeared; from this we know that it is the last hour (1 Jn 2:18).

An antichrist is anyone who denies God the Father and Jesus the Son.

Who is the liar but the one who denies that Jesus is the Christ? This is the antichrist, the one who denies the Father and the Son (1 Jn 2:22).

The antichrist spirit stands in opposition to God and His ways. The battle of the last days will be between the power of the Holy Spirit and the power of the antichrist. The church, under the anointing and power of the Holy Spirit, is a force that the powers of darkness will not be able to stand against.

"I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it (Matt 16:18).

One of the disciplines that brings strength to the church is prayer. Personal, private times of prayer are important, but there is strength in numbers. Our efforts are multiplied when we pray together.

On your walls, O Jerusalem, I have appointed watchmen; All day and all night they will never keep silent. You who remind the LORD, take no rest for yourselves; And give Him no rest until He establishes And makes Jerusalem a praise in the earth (Isa 62:6-7).

We are called to be watchmen, to stand in the gap for our nation and for all mankind. We are called to intercede for each other, our families, our community, and the world. Nothing God wills to do on earth will happen without prayer. When believers pray together in agreement with each other and with God, nothing will be impossible to them.

“Again I say to you, that if two of you agree on earth about anything that they may ask, it shall be done for them by My Father who is in heaven. “For where two or three have gathered together in My name, I am there in their midst” (Matt 18:19-20).

There is great power in a church that unites itself together in prayer. God is calling His church to prayer. In Acts 12, Peter has been arrested and thrown into prison by King Herod. Herod’s intent was to kill Peter like he had done to James. Suddenly an angel of the Lord appears to Peter and leads him out of the prison and sets him free.

And when he realized this, he went to the house of Mary, the mother of John who was also called Mark, where many were gathered together and were praying (Act 12:12).

Peter’s deliverance was the result of people gathering together to pray. Corporate prayer is perhaps our strongest weapon against the spirit of the antichrist. That is why Satan works hard to distract, divide, and destroy unity in the church.

God moves when His people unite themselves together in prayer. Spending time together in prayer will not only move heaven, it will change us. Praying together with others brings us into unity and sets us in place as watchman.

Do you pray?

Have you taken your position on the wall with others?

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Voice of the Lord

Pastor Tim Franklin - Freedom Christian Center
April 29, 2010

Ps. 29:9 “The voice of the Lord causes the deer to give birth…”

Awesome is the voice of the Lord! It strikes terror in the heart, like the roar of the lion. It soothes and comforts like a mother over her child. It creates, it destroys, it raises up and brings down. Awesome is the voice of the Lord! Jesus said, “My sheep know my voice and listen and follow.”

In Psalm 29, ‘the voice of the Lord’ expression is used eight different times. The Voice of the Lord is over the waters, is full of majesty, breaks cedars, divides flames of fire, shakes the wilderness and makes deer give birth. Awesome is the voice of the Lord!

I heard the voice of the Lord say today, “there is a slowing down of spiritual birthings.” Upon hearing that, I immediately thought of Ps. 29:9 “that it is the voice of the Lord that causes the deer to give birth.” It is amazing, the things that have come forth in the earth because people have heard the voice of the Lord. Churches get started, ministries come forth, governments shift, people are born again, healed and delivered ― all because of the voice of the Lord.

So when I hear God whispering that there is a slowing down of spiritual birthings, my spirit man immediately begins contending for the hearing of God’s voice in our region. We must hear His voice! He has plans for us! There are blessings and prophetic words hanging over our region. We must hear His voice and bring forth those visions with strength.

Forward movement stops, village life ceases, spiritual climates digress, and corruption of culture, family, and society begins to take place when God’s voice is not heard. When His voice is not heard we lose sight of His vision for us, our community and our nation. Amos said strongly in 8:11 "Behold, the days are coming," says the Lord God, "That I will send a famine on the land, Not a famine of bread, Nor a thirst for water, But of hearing the words of the Lord. (NKJV) That was not good for Israel and it is not good for us.

Would the deer give birth without the hearing of the voice of the Lord? Would the wilderness shake? I want the things of God to accelerate in our region not slow down. I am contending for breakthrough! I am contending for revival! I am contending for ‘God activity’ all over our county. I am contending that His voice be heard in our land! Rise up intercessors! PUSH! Rise up church! PUSH! Rise up and PUSH! Bring forth what God has put inside of you.

Do not back down, let up, turn aside or quit! Rise up and PUSH!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Have You Found the Secret Place?

Pastor Larry Booth, Our Father's House- April 22, 2010
Have you found the secret place? I’ve heard that question before and often pondered the meaning of the secret place. One thing is for sure, each of us needs to meet with GOD and receive revelation for our day to day living! Amen!

The psalmist writes, “The secret of the LORD is with those who fear HIM, and HE will show them HIS covenant.” (Ps.25:14)

The very word translated most frequently in the New Testament for prayer "proseuchomai" is a worship word meaning to bow before, which certainly implies the fear of the LORD mentioned by the psalmist.

I believe it is in the place of worship where the secrets of GOD are revealed. Two wonderful examples from the Word of God are found in II Chronicles 20 and Acts 13. King Jehoshaphat set himself to seek the LORD (verse 3) and proclaimed a national level fast. The Bible tells us that the Spirit of God came upon a man who was standing in the midst of the assembly. The word of revelation defined the battle plan and set the worshippers before the army. Wow…what a place to meet GOD!!! Hallelujah!!!

In Acts 13 we see mission strategy unfolding from the place of worship and prayer. The Bible says, as they ministered to the LORD and fasted (Acts 13:2) the Holy Spirit revealed the plan of the hour. Hallelujah!!!

Do you see it? I believe GOD is raising up MyHOP for such a time as this. HE is putting us in the place of worship and prayer where we can corporately minister to the LORD. I believe we shall see revelation coming forth with divine strategies for our region as we gather, worship, pray, fast at certain seasons and minister to the LORD.

Will you become part of this awakening to minister to the LORD? Will you make the place of prayer and the seeking of GOD a priority in your life? May we find this road covered in grace that will enable us to fulfill our destiny as a region in GOD’S kingdom purpose. Hallelujah!!!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Looking Toward Heaven

Pastor Gary Stebbins, COTRM- April 15, 2010
Jesus set out to find some time alone and went off by Himself in a small boat. However people were desperate for a touch from heaven and by the time Jesus arrived at His destination, a great crowd had already assembled. In Matthew 14:14 it says that Jesus “felt compassion for them and healed their sick.”

As the day wore on and evening approached, the disciples, obviously tired from a long day, suggested that Jesus send everybody home. “After all,” they reasoned, “ … this place is desolate and the hour is already late; so send the crowds away, that they may go into the villages and buy food for themselves (Mtt 14:15)." Sounds like a reasonable and even responsible thing to do. However, Jesus had other plans. Jesus suggested that the people did not need to go away, and furthermore, He asked the disciples to feed them. “What,” I am sure they must have exclaimed, “We only have five small loaves of bread and two fish, how can we possibly feed a crowd so large?”

Jesus did something very interesting at this point. He took the bread and the fish and, “looking up toward heaven, He blessed the food, and breaking the loaves He gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds, and they all ate and were satisfied (Mtt 14:19-20).” I found this very interesting when I read it. There was not enough food to feed the over 5000 people who had gathered, and yet Jesus calmly, “looking up toward heaven” offered them the bread and fish that they had.

How could Jesus feed five over 5000 people with five loaves of bread and two fish? Immediately following this miracle, Jesus, “went up on the mountain by Himself to pray; and when it was evening, He was there alone (Mtt 14:23).” It was Jesus pattern to regularly get away and spend time in the presence of God the Father and pray. His constant communion with the Father enabled Him to minister to the people. During these times of drawing away from the crowds to be with His heavenly Father, Jesus became increasing aware of the Father’s heart. As a result, in His moment of need, all Jesus had to do was “look up toward heaven” to reassure Himself of God’s purpose and plan for Him at that very moment in time.

It is obvious that prayer and spending time alone in the presence of God was important to Jesus, as it should be for us today as well. Looking back at the beginning of this passage of scripture, there is another benefit of spending regular, consistent, time with God. When Jesus first saw the crowd that had gathered it says that Jesus “felt compassion for them and healed their sick.” When Jesus looked toward heaven, He was not just feeling sorry for the people because they were hungry. Through spending time in prayer He had acquired the heart of the Father for the people around Him. His heart was filled with the compassion of God for the people. Therefore, even after a long day of ministry, Jesus was willing to take time and demonstrate the reality of the Father’s compassion by asking God to feed the people. In faith, without any outward sign, Jesus thanked God for the provision to feed over 5000 people.

Today we want to be able to work the same miracles that Jesus worked, but are we ready to spend the time in communion and prayer with the Father that Jesus spent?

I think we are!

How often do you pause to “look toward heaven?” Do you regularly spend time with God alone? How about gathering together with other believers to pray and worship God?

Friday, April 9, 2010

Knock, Knock

Pastor Tony Hauck, COTRM- April 9, 2010

There are two types of knocking on doors in the New Testament. One is in Revelation 3:20, where Jesus knocks on our door. Let’s call this passive, since all we have to do is open the door when Jesus shows up.

The other is in Luke 11:9-10, where we knock on His door. We’ll call this active for obvious reasons.

Now I love when Jesus initiates spiritual activity, but I think we may be unbalanced. Our default mode seems to be to wait around for Him to do something. And when nothing happens, we spiritualize by playing the “God is sovereign” card. But consider some things He has said.

You don’t have because you don’t ask (James 4:2). Draw near to God (i.e. you go first), and He will draw near to you (James 4:8). You can’t please God unless you believe He rewards diligent seeking (Heb 11:6). Always pray (knock) persistently and don’t give up (Luke 18:1-9).

Seems to me we’re supposed to be doing most of the knocking. We need to realize that we have the power, through prayer, to stir up the activity of God. If our spiritual lives are boring, it’s not His fault.

Have you knocked on the doors of heaven recently?

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

What are GOD’S Appointed Times?

Pastor Larry Booth, Our Father’s House, April 6, 2010

What are GOD’S appointed times? To answer this question we must take a look at Leviticus 23. It is the only chapter in the Bible that gives us an explanation of all 7 of the LORD’S feasts in one place.

Every culture and religious system on the planet has special days and traditions that are recognized as important to the people. The seven feasts of Israel are the only holidays or feast days in the world that were given by Almighty God and referred to as HIS days or HIS feasts. In other words, this was God’s idea!!!

And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, “Speak to the children of Israel, and say to them: ‘The feasts of the LORD, which you shall proclaim to be holy convocations, these are MY feasts.’” (Leviticus 23:1-2)

These seven feasts had special appointed times keyed to the Hebrew calendar of months. The very celebration itself carried a special connection to Almighty God. I believe that as we align ourselves with God’s appointed times and seasons we are posturing ourselves to maximize our understanding of what GOD is doing in the world today. I see this for the simple reason that each of the seven feasts of Israel have their fulfillment and true meaning wrapped up in the life of the Messiah, Jesus, the Son of the Living God.

This very week we are entering into three of the feasts of the LORD; Passover, Feast of Unleavened Bread, and Firstfruits. All of which are ultimately fulfilled in the life of Jesus Christ, who is our Passover lamb, the sinless sacrifice (no leaven), and the first one to conquer sin, death and the grave and be raised to immortality in resurrection life and power.

So…God’s appointed times matter. May we line ourselves up with these marvelous expressions of the work of Christ and in doing so be enriched in our faith and hopeful of a better tomorrow!!!

Most of us have a hunger to understand the prophetic and to be praying in as much alignment with heaven as we possibly can. I believe a proper understanding of the seven feasts of Israel will place us in maximum alignment with what the Spirit is saying to the church today in our world.

At Wits End

Pastor Gary Stebbins, COTR- Melbourne, March 30, 2010
We have all heard people say that “God is a crutch to those who are weak.” For many Christians when they hear this, the hair on the back of their neck bristles and they immediately want to defend their belief in God. “After all, just because I believe in God, that does not mean that I am a weak!” However, in one way, the statement is quite true. For those who recognize that their own strength, wisdom, and resolve are not enough turn to God. They come to the end of themselves and recognize their need for God.

To take it a step further, it is often desperation in the human heart that causes someone to cry out to God in prayer. Oswald Chambers says it like this, “It is not cowardly to pray when we are at our wits’ end; it is the only way to get in touch with reality. As long as we are self-sufficient and complacent, we don’t need to ask God for anything; we don’t want Him. It is only when we know we are powerless that we are prepared to listen to Jesus Christ and to do what He says.”

Are you experiencing difficulties in your life; does what is happening in the world today scare you? These are great reasons to turn to God in prayer.

Remember, prayer is not so much about getting something from God, as much as it is getting to know God. Prayer is the food that nourishes the life of God that is within us. We must pray if we want our relationship with God to flourish.

Again, in the words of Oswald Chambers, Christians “need to concentrate more on how prayer changes us and less on how it changes things. Prayer is getting ourselves attuned to God, not getting God attuned to us. It is developing the life of God in us, not self-development.”

As God said to Paul the Apostle, “my grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Paul’s response to God’s Word, “therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ’s sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong” (2 Corinthians 12:9-10).

I am not ashamed to say, “I am weak and therefore I need God.” In my weakness I pray and seek the face of my God. Prayer is a vehicle through which I get to know God and the power of His life that lives within me. Prayer brings me into alignment with God’s will and releases the provision of heaven for my life.

When I am weak, I PRAY, and He proves Himself strong. What about you?

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Despise Not

Tim Franklin, Freedom Christian Center, March 18, 2010

I Thessalonians 5:20 "Do not despise prophecies. " (NKJV)

  • A simple definition of prophecy is: God communicating His thoughts, His will and His intentions for his people. What an honor! God speaking to us! David said of His voice, Psalms 29:9 "The voice of the Lord makes the deer give birth, And strips the forests bare; And in His temple everyone says, "Glory!""(NKJV) Oh, the awesomeness of His voice! It shatters the cedars of Lebanon, twists the mighty oaks, and yet in the stillness causes the deer to give birth. How majestic and splendid is His voice and He speaks to us!

    I want to remind the MyHOP community of a prophetic word that came at our last gathering. “My unction and my power in the Spirit is increased in you tonight!” For those who were there and heard this word, and those who are reading this today: What was/will be your response to His voice?

    I Thessalonians 5:20 exhorts us to not despise the prophecies. The word ‘despise’ in this verse means: to make of no account, to reject, to cast aside. The Amplified Bible says, “Do not spurn the gifts and utterances of the prophets [do not depreciate prophetic revelations nor despise inspired instruction or exhortation or warning].” If we heard and are not responding to that word we have despised it. The reality is, if we have not believed or prayed into this word beyond that evening we have cast it aside and made it of no account!

    Now for the good news, if you have fallen into the ‘guilty’ category, don’t stay in the place of guilt. Simply say, “Forgive me Lord!” Pick the word up and with a giant “YES!” in your spirit say, “Amen! I agree!”

    God by His word desires to increase His anointing upon us. He desires to increase His power in us. The prophetic word hangs in the realm of the Spirit waiting for us to pick it up and run with it. Declare it! Believe it! Walk in it!

    Father, I thank you for increased anointing in Your House of Prayer. I thank you for increased power in Your House of Prayer. I thank you that you are strengthening the place of prayer in our lives and in our region! May your church agree and may we walk in all that you have given to us!

    If you picked this word up today let me hear from you.

    Ps. Don’t forget our next MyHOP gathering April 2 at Freedom Christian Center. It will be a healing service!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Should we pray more for our leaders?

Pastor Larry Booth, Our Father's House - March 10, 2010

That should be a “no brainer” for any serious follower of Jesus…right? Let me say that as a pastor, I can always use more prayer support in the ministry I’ve been called to by the LORD.

The Prophet Zechariah was given an amazing glimpse into the spirit realm that should help motivate us to pray more for our spiritual leadership in our churches. “Then he showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the Angel of the LORD, and Satan standing at his right hand to oppose him. And the LORD said to Satan; ’The LORD rebuke you Satan! The LORD who has chosen Jerusalem rebuke you! Is this not a brand plucked from the fire?’” (Zechariah 3:1-2)

The insights we can gain from studying the prophets of the Bible will often give us a more complete picture of the spiritual conflict and nature of our adversary. Think about this particular example. The prophet of GOD is given a supernatural revelation of what is unseen to the world and often unseen to the people of GOD in general. He sees the level of resistance and opposition the priest of GOD is experiencing in his service to the LORD. We are not talking here about just a priest, but the high priest of Israel, the one responsible for going into the holy place. What do we see here? We see a level of resistance and opposition that is beyond the human in nature. Satan himself is standing at his right hand resisting and opposing what Joshua is trying to do in his ministry to the LORD.

How intense is this kind of conflict? From the text we can gather several amazing insights into the intensity of the battle. The LORD Himself enters into the picture and rebukes Satan, not once, but twice. A double rebuke reveals for us the magnitude of the battle we face every day in ministry. Another interesting insight we see in this text is the filthy garments that Joshua was wearing. (Zechariah 3:3-5) Perhaps his own sin issues opened the door for a major spiritual attack from the enemy? This could be a warning to all of us…to live out our walk with CHRIST 24/7. Thankfully, the LORD intervenes here, cleanses HIS servant and restores the proper order of ministry in the house. Aren’t you glad as well, that when we miss it and fall into the world’s traps, we have a REDEEMER GOD who rescues us and restores us. Hallelujah!!!

So…back to the opening question. Should we pray more for our leaders?

Most of the pastors in our region that I speak with on a regular basis would say that they sense the dial up of warfare over the region. I would agree. Our level of prayer and intercession must exceed the level of resistance and opposition or we will not gain any ground in the territory. So…if Satan is dialing it up…then the people of GOD must dial it up more to gain ground!!! That makes perfect sense to me. How about you?

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Do It! Now!

Gary Stebbins, Church on the Rock, Melbourne, FL - March 4, 2010

As I was re-reading the story of Jabez recently, I was impressed with the prayer that this man offered up to God. Our only insight into the life of Jabez is found in two verses in 1 Chronicles 4:9-10 …
"Jabez was more honorable than his brothers, and his mother named him Jabez saying, "Because I bore him with pain." 10 Now Jabez called on the God of Israel, saying, "Oh that You would bless me indeed and enlarge my border, and that Your hand might be with me, and that You would keep me from harm that it may not pain me!" And God granted him what he requested. " (NASU)

The fact that Jabez was born in pain may refer to actual physical pain in child-birth, but it might also reference a general time of difficulty and adversity in the life of Jabez and his family, or perhaps even the nation of Israel at that time. In light of the adversities that Jabez was experiencing, as he grew older, he “called on the God of Israel.” In other words, he prayed. He cried out to God and asked God to change his circumstances. This was a bold prayer.

I do not see this as a prayer that Jabez prayed one time, but the cry of his heart as he was growing up and coming into his own. I can see Jabez going before God time and time again making his requests. Jabez asked God … to bless him, to enlarge his borders, that God’s hand might be with him, and that God would keep him from harm.

Now God is God, and He is not required to answer every prayer request we make of Him, and this was certainly a bold request that Jabez prayed. However, in the same way, God cannot answer a prayer that we do not pray. Jabez had the faith and the courage to pray bold prayers before his God. As a result God granted him his request. If he had never prayed, he may never have received what God was ready and willing to grant him.

Certainly, if Jabez could persistently present his prayers to God, so can we. The writer of Hebrews, in talking about Jesus Christ in His role as our High Priest, makes the following statement … "Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need ." (Heb 4:16, NASU).

As those who know Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, we can, “draw near with confidence”, to God. The word confidence, or boldness in some translations, means to be unreserved in speaking or to have no fear in speaking. In other words, we can go before God and speak freely to Him about our needs, our fears, our desires, and even our sin. In fact, He encourages us to come to Him … “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest." (Mt 11:28).
As did Jabez, may we learn to call on our God in prayer. This is the time; now is the hour. Regularly and frequently cry out to God in prayer. Do it! Now!

Were you tagged by today’s post? Did it stir you to go deeper in the place of prayer? Share your thoughts, I want to hear from you.

Friday, February 26, 2010

MY HOUSE! A thread through the Word

Pastor Tim Franklin, Freedom Christian Center
February 26, 2010

Zechariah 1:16 'Therefore thus says the Lord: "I am returning to Jerusalem with mercy; My house shall be built in it," says the Lord of hosts, "And a surveyor's line shall be stretched out over Jerusalem."' NKJV Haggai and Zechariah are two prophets sent by God for the purpose of rebuilding the House of Prayer.

Jesus declared in Mt 21:13, My house, will be called a house of prayer.” We often focus on the prayer part of that passage, and we should. But think with me for a moment: Jesus is the one speaking, and His statement is “My House!” Wow! Jesus has a house! He has a place that has an identity and it can be found! It is called the House of Prayer. David initiated the House of Prayer under the leadership of the Holy Spirit. God wanted a house and He found a man to build it—David.

David vowed to create a dwelling place for the Mighty One of Jacob! (Ps. 132:1-8) He vowed to live in extravagant devotion to seek the Lord with all his resources—time, talents, and money in order to see God’s house built. David literally shifted history when he created the tabernacle of worship! Night and day prayer, seven days a week, 24 hours a day! This was not a plan of man in the heart of David; this was the plan of God as revealed to David—“All this’, said David, ‘the Lord made me understand in writing, by His hand upon me, all the works of these plans.” I Chron. 28:11-19. The plan: a revelation of 24/7 worship led by full time singers and musicians! When David became king he initiated the Tabernacle of 24/7 worship. When his son Solomon was about to become king, David gave him the plans that the Lord had given him for the temple along with the vision of 24/7 prayer and worship. And every restoration of the Old Testament Kingdom of Judah (7 total) was hallmarked by the restoration of David’s vision of night and day prayer and worship. Amos 9:11 declares that we will see once again at the end of the age a restoration of David’s tabernacle—24/7 worship! God will have His house and it will be called a House of Prayer! Jesus simply said, “That is My house—A House of Prayer!” I want to build that House!

Prayer is not an option! Worship is not an option! These represent the place of encounter with the Living God! It was David who said, I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go into the house of the LORD.” I want this region to encounter God. I want you to encounter God! I want to see a strong House of Prayer in East Central Florida! Why not here? Why not now?

So -- what do you think? Has your heart been stirred? Let me know, I value your comments!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

More and More

Gary Stebbins, Church on the Rock, Melbourne, FL - February 18, 2010

We all know that at times life can be difficult. When life throws us a curve ball, how do we respond? When we seem to be overwhelmed by the difficulties we face, what do we do?

In Psalm 71, David is aware of his adversaries, those who want to see him fail. Even as his enemies consult together as to how to “pursue and seize him,” David cries out to God…“O God, do not be far from me; O my God, hasten to my help (v 12)!”

Certainly there is no better solution to our problems than to turn to God in prayer. Reading the Psalm in its entirety, you find that God was David's "confidence", a place to take "refuge", the "rock" on which he stood, his "fortress", and his sense of "hope". Prayer had become for David a natural response to the curves that life threw him.

But David does not stop with prayer. Look at what he says…“But as for me, I will hope continually and will praise you yet more and more (v 14).”

Wow! In the middle of his difficulties David immediately turned to prayer, but he also resolved in his heart that he would “hope continually” in God. It did not matter how dismal the situation looked around him, he was going to keep his hope in God alive. That is so important if we are going to be successful in this life. We must continually believe that God is our hope and our salvation.

How does David keep up his hope in the face of such great difficulties? Well, he tells us…“And (I) will praise you yet more and more.”

David found it helpful, perhaps even necessary for survival, to verbally express praise to God “more and more” as the difficulties increased. It was his constant verbal expression of praise that helped him to “hope continually” in God.

I love David's resolve, "But as for me ..." David understood that he would only find victory when he hoped continually in God and praised Him more and more.

Are you facing difficulties, then immediately cry out to God in prayer. As David did, resolve to “hope continually” in God and believe that He hears and answers your prayers. At the same time, let everyone around you hear your praises for God. In this way you will build faith in your own heart so your hope in Him will grow stronger and stronger. This increased faith will energize your prayers as you cry out to God in your time of need.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Always Pray and Don't Lose Heart

Pastor Tim Franklin, Freedom Christian Center, Melbourne, FL

Luke 18:1 Then He spoke a parable to them, that men always ought to pray and not lose heart. NKJV.

I love the way Jesus teaches! He tells a parable, and up front He gives the meaning. “I tell you a parable and the meaning is this: Always pray and do not lose heart.” This is one of those, “Hey, I really want you to get this” teachings.

The main question(s) that follow this statement today is: “How do I do that? How do I not grow weary of praying? How do I keep myself from getting tired of the place of prayer? How do I keep myself from getting discouraged or wanting to quit?” Jesus gives us a hint in verse six when He tells us to hear what the unjust judge said. Luke 18:4-5 Though I do not fear God nor regard man, yet because this widow troubles me I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming she weary me. NKJV

We must not forget that Jesus tells this parable in the context of the end of the age, Luke 17:20-37. It is in this place of urgency that we are instructed to never give up praying. It is urgent that we not lose heart in the midst of circumstances that have the capacity to offend us. The natural progression of the natural man is: Why is this happening to me? Where is God? Why is He not answering? I guess He does not care; therefore, there is no need for me to pray. How do I keep my heart from going to the place of prayerlessness?

Know who you are talking to--Jesus. The woman in this parable is talking to an unjust judge who has no fear of God or concern for men. We are talking to Jesus! The Righteous Judge who delights in the fear of the Lord, Is. 11:3, and who has all humanity in heart, not willing that any would perish.

Don’t forget why you are talking--Justice. The woman was asking for justice! “God, make that which is wrong-right!” Until Jesus returns and sets up His Kingdom on earth, there will be more than enough wrongs needing to be made right in this age. We are to live burdened to see the injustices of this life done away with. This must begin in the place of prayer.

Know that prayer was a priority to Jesus. Jesus, himself, demonstrates the priority of prayer as we watch His life. He is up before the sun praying. He prays long into the night after great ministry success. He was so good at it that the disciples asked Him, “Teach us to pray like that.”
When Jesus returns will He find us in the place of faith. Faith in the midst of trials is real faith! We walk by faith and not by sight. When I have nothing in the natural to look at but His Word, and nothing in the natural to trust, but His Word, there am I in the place of faith, if I do not give way to doubt.

If you know who you are talking to: Jesus-that is intimacy. If you know what you are talking about: justice-that is urgency to see wrongs made right. You will stay motivated to pray. If you know that Jesus leads by example-He is always praying and ever lives to make intercession, you too will pray. When your heart is set on His Word and you believe it—you will stand in faith.

Therefore, always pray and do not lose heart!