Posts Tagged ‘Jesus’

Is God’s Law Still Relevant for Today?

Written by Daniel K Norris. Posted in Frontlines Stories

I had just finished praying in the altars on the last night of an extended revival. A young man who was studying for ministry approached me with tears in his eyes. As I placed my hand on his shoulder, he said, “I need to apologize to you. I judged you too soon. Anytime I hear someone preach what sounds like ‘law’ it makes me angry and I instantly shut them out. I can see now I was wrong and missed out on what God could have done in me this week.” My heart welled up with compassion for him, as my mind replayed the past week searching for the offense. I took a few extra minutes to minister and pray with him there at the altar and the next few days thinking about our conversation.

To be clear, I am a preacher of the gospel, not the law. As an evangelist, I have no other message than that of Christ and Him crucified. It is a message not only of grace, but of love, forgiveness, salvation, redemption, faith, freedom and power!

That said, I have noticed that anytime I make reference to the law, sin, conviction and repentance alongside grace, I feel barriers go up in the atmosphere. At that moment it often becomes necessary to stop and define these terms as they have become so distorted by the toxic theology that has been taught in recent years.

Focusing solely on the grace of God without preaching the divine law, justice and judgment of God is unbalanced. Remember, John 3:16 doesn’t just tell us that God loved us and gave his son to us, it also tells us we will perish unless we believe upon Jesus.

There is MORE!

Written by Daniel Norris. Posted in Frontlines Stories

AW Tozer wrote, “You and I have as much of God as we want.”

That statement has burned within my spirit these past three weeks.  It’s both convicted me of personal complacency and stirred me to a greater fervency.  I hunger for more of God than what I currently know.  Thankfully there is more!  So much more!!!

Consider the personal implications of that quote.  How much of God is enough for you?  Have you found a place of contentment within his presence and settled down?  Is it possible that you’ve backtracked in your spiritual life?  Is there a time you were more on fire for the Lord than you are now?    Do you still desire more of God?  Tozer says, “you have as much of God as you want.”  How much of God have you settled for?  Are you contending for more?

I remember during the revival that it wasn’t strange to be at the church every night.  Why?  God was in the house and we didn’t want to be absent.  After decades of being in church without God, God wasn’t going to be in church without me!  During that blessed time it wasn’t work or legalism that drove me to church night after night, it was hunger for more and more of his presence.

I wish I could tell you that everyday since I’ve run hard after him.  I certainly could have, but life has a tendency to bring things our way that takes our eyes off the one and only thing that matters.  We stop praying like we used to, we stop worshiping like we used to, we miss a day or two of devotional time with Jesus.  It’s easy to excuse at first.   Initially we are convicted, but soon we become content.  It’s a subtle slide and a slow fade.  None of us intend to slip, it’s the natural consequence of becoming content with the status quo.

My friend, contentment is the greatest enemy of your Christianity.  Contentment says, “this is a good place to stop. I’ve seen all I need to see, experienced all I need to experience, have all I need to have.”  Instead of progressing into greater glory in him we camp out at the last experience.  Contentment is the first step to compromise and compromise is one step from spiritual death.

Perhaps that’s where you are, spiritually dead or dying.  If so, close your eyes right now and cry out to Him.  There is grace to meet you at this moment and bring your spirit back to life.  Maybe you’re just at that place of contentment, if so let these words stir you – there is more, more than you currently know, so much more!

God doesn’t dwell in our past and neither should we.  He has never stopped moving since that last encounter and will continue to move beyond the next.  There is a greater dimension of his glory awaiting you.  Refuse to be content with the past measure of his presence.  It’s time to contend for a greater glory in the future!

via There is MORE! – Daniel K Norris.

Be Still My Soul

Written by Steve Hill. Posted in Frontlines Stories

Many have asked me how I’ve been able to maintain my Christian walk over the past 30 years, even in the midst of life’s fiery trials.

I’m going to share with you some of the secrets of my longevity. I’m not an old man, but I’m also not a young man. I’ve preached the gospel now for nearly 30 years, and I expect to preach the gospel for at least another 30 years.

The longer I live, the longer I want to live. I don’t want to miss a thing that God has for me. I don’t want to die and miss the revival that’s coming. I want to experience the great move of God that’s just on the horizon. I want to see millions get saved and whole nations come to Christ. This is what I live for, and it’s the reason why I plan on living to a ripe old age. How about you?

The truths that I’m going to share with you have become invaluable to me over the years. They are a part of the fabric of my being. I live by them, and I challenge you to do the same. Learning to live by them will cause you to be rich in the Spirit. It will affect your physical and mental well-being and can even add years to your life.

7 Signs You Need Revival

Written by Frontlines. Posted in Uncategorized

I was in major need of revival by the age of 19. I was the backslidden grandson of a fiery tent-preaching revivalist. I had spent a great deal of my life in the church but was now running fast into the world. I was a gifted hypocrite who played the part on Sunday but did as I wished come Monday.

Apparently I had enough people fooled to be used as a leader in the church. I don’t know if that said more about my skillful deception or their desperation. The warning signs were there if someone would have exercised enough discernment to see the symptoms.

I was dying and needed help. Thankfully that help arrived in our little church in 1996 when revival broke out during an ice storm (another story for another day). Jesus, the great physician, showed up with a diagnosis and prescription for my spiritual condition. Yes, it hurt, but it also healed!

There are seven questions for self discovery that the great theologian A.W. Tozer encourages us to consider. These questions, if answered honestly, speaks volumes about our spiritual health. They are:

  • What we want most
  • What we think about most
  • How we use our money
  • What we do with our leisure time
  • The company we enjoy
  • Who and what we admire
  • What we laugh at

I make it a point to frequently ask these questions of myself. With these in mind, I want to offer seven signs you need revival in your own life:

1. YOU ARE ENTERTAINED BY THINGS THAT ONCE GRIEVED YOU.

When I got saved, I cleaned up my life and cleaned out my house. I filled up several garbage cans with worldly items that I had collected over the years. No one told me to do this. I simply had such a pure love for the Lord and I didn’t want anything to come between me and Him. I was breaking up with the devil and no longer had a need for any of these articles of worldly affection.

However, any home that has been swept clean will once again become dirty if it’s not maintained daily. Over time, it’s easy to drop our guard and let things back into our lives that we once shook off.

Are you turning on things that once you would have turned off? When is the last time you walked out of a movie because you were grieved over how they profaned the name of your God? Are peers comfortable sharing obscene jokes in your presence, or do they change their tone when you’re around? Are you entertaining yourself with things that once grieved you?

2. YOU ARE SILENT WHERE YOU ONCE SPOKE.

Asking a man filled with the Spirit to be silent is as futile as asking a lit candle not to shine. The boldness to share the gospel is inherent in the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Jesus said, “You will receive power when My Spirit comes on you, and you will be My witnesses.”

The truest evidence of the baptism of the Holy Spirit is a tongue that has been set free and set on fire with the gospel!

Remember when you were first saved? You wanted to share the experience with your friends and family. Remember that boldness to declare His righteousness and what He had done for you? Do you still have it, or has your voice grown still? Your silence may be the sign of a backslidden heart.

When is the last time you shared your faith? Do you speak up when a wrong must be made right? Are you silent where you should speak?

It is time to once again find your voice!

3. YOUR PRAYER CLOSET HAS COBWEBS AND YOUR BIBLE IS DUSTY.

No man is greater than his own prayer life. The believer that doesn’t spend time on his face before the Lord and in the Word is quietly telling the Lord, “I’ve got this on my own.”

Jesus said, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God” (Matt. 4:4). He didn’t say proceeded, but proceeds. It’s not just what has God spoken to you in the past, but what He says to you today! If you want to live, you have to daily get on your face and get into His Word.

When life throws a problem your way, is prayer the first place you turn or the last? What did God show you in His Word today? When is the last time you spent quality time with the Lord? If you were as lacking in your vocation as you are in your devotion, how long would it be until you were out of work?

Do you believe prayer truly works? Then you should be praying more!

4. YOU’RE MORE LIKELY TO CRITICIZE YOUR PASTOR THAN TO CONTEMPLATE HIS MESSAGE.

When you walk out of church, are you thinking about what you agreed and disagreed with in the message, or do you take it to heart? Criticism is a sure symptom of a heart that is hardening.

I’ve learned in my own life that when I am criticizing another person, it says more about me than it does about them. Why not attend church this weekend and ask the Lord to speak to your heart and change your life through the words spoken from your pastor?

5. YOU EXCUSE SIN.

Sin is anything Jesus wouldn’t do. I like this simple and straightforward definition. If Jesus wouldn’t go there, do that, drink that, smoke that, say that, listen to that or watch that, then it is sin and has no place in the life a son or daughter of God.

Jesus set the standard pretty high. He said, “You shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect” (Matt. 5:48). The writer of Hebrews tells us to “pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord” (Heb. 12:14). Holiness and perfection is impossible if you attempt to do it on your own.

Thankfully, I’m not doing this in my own strength but in His.

Are you tolerating habits and addictions? What are the hidden things in your life you wouldn’t want anyone else to find out about? What do you keep telling yourself—“It’s no big deal”?

If you have sin in your life, don’t excuse it. Confess it!

6. YOU’RE LOOKING FOR THE “DISLIKE” BUTTON ON THIS ARTICLE.

Solomon wrote, “Faithful are the wounds of a friend, but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful” (Prov. 27:6).

If I’m sick, I want a doctor to diagnose the problem, not tell me how great I am. If I’m unhealthy, I want a good friend to care enough to confront me about my eating habits. If I’m swimming in a mountain of debt, I don’t need a friend offering me another loan; I need a true friend to cut up my credit cards.

Yes, it hurts the ego or pride to be told that something is off. But those wounds are faithful if they come from a friend who loves us.

If someone is always telling me how great I am and how blessed God wants me to be but never steps on my toes in areas where I’m falling short, do they really care about me? Sometimes caring means confronting!

If this message seems offensive to you, don’t criticize the writer. Cross-examine the reader!

7. YOU HAVE A DEEP SENSE THERE IS SOMETHING MORE!

Tozer said, “To have found God and still to pursue Him is the soul’s paradox of love.” How true that is.

It’s almost been 20 years since I found God at the altar of a church, but yet I still pursue Him every single day. After all these years, I still hunger for more. Thankfully, there is more!

  • Enoch walked with God (Gen. 5:24).
  • Moses spoke with God as a friend speaks with a friend (Ex. 33:11).
  • Isaiah saw the Lord high and lifted up (Is. 6:1).
  • Peter watched as Jesus pulled back His humanity and exposed His divinity (Matt. 17:4).
  • Paul was taught by Christ (Gal. 1:12).
  • John was called up to heaven, where he saw Jesus upon His throne (Rev. 20:11).

This fires me up!

  • Edwards and Wesley awakened our nation.
  • Charles Finney was baptized in waves and waves of liquid love.
  • William Seymore lived in the glory cloud for four years at Azusa.
  • Smith Wigglesworth raised the dead back to life.

I am jealous of their God encounters and will not be denied my own!

My friend, if you’ve slowed or even stopped your pursuit of God, let these words stir you. There is more! If you see that you are in need of revival, be encouraged. It is not far from you. If you will come close to Him, He promises to come close to you (James 4:8).

 

7 Signs You Need Revival – Daniel K Norris.

That’s Revival

Written by Frontlines. Posted in Frontlines Stories

Three weeks ago, we laid Steve Hill’s earthly tent to rest. It is fitting that his burial plot is near David Wilkerson and Leonard Ravenhill. These three men ran so closely together and were used so mightily in the past century. All three finished well!

Steve was privileged to be part of two incredible moves of God in Argentina and Pensacola, but he always contended that the greatest move of God yet was before us, not behind us. Now his leg of the race is over. He has joined that crowd of witnesses and will see the next revival from heaven’s vantage point.

This next leg of the race is ours. As I run, I am more stirred for revival now more than ever. I am believing for one more great outpouring of His Spirit in these last days. I trust I’m not alone.

Some might say, “We don’t need revival,” or, “God will not bless America with another move of God while we continue our slide further and further away from Him.” (Trust me, I get the emails.) Friend, this is precisely why we need revival!

REVIVAL IS NOT GOD’S AWARD FOR OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS. IT’S HIS ANSWER FOR OUR UNRIGHTEOUSNESS!

I understand there are a lot of different thoughts on revival. Like so many words we use in Christianity, revival carries different definitions for different people. Some see it as a series of special meetings in a church. Others think it is an emotional outbreak devoid of true spirituality. Some have messaged me to inform me that the word revival is not in the Bible or that we shouldn’t seek it but rather seek God. We use the same word but mean different things.

For me, revival means something special. Before revival touched my life, I was a backslidden, lukewarm, apathetic, complacent sinner who was quite comfortable going to church for my religious experience on Sunday while I did as I pleased starting Monday. After graduating from high school in 1994, I made up my mind: I was done with church and through with God. I was on my way out of the church, just as the Spirit of the Lord was coming into the church.

In March of 1996, I stopped running from God and ran to Him. I walked down to the altar of a church and finally surrendered. It was my Damascus Road experience. God finally got my attention. He spoke, I listened, and I’ve never been the same since!

For the past 18 years, I’ve devoted my life to preaching the gospel—that’s revival!

Let me define it further.

REVIVAL IS REBIRTH

The surest sign that revival is in your midst is the salvation of lost souls. It was revival when 3,000 were saved on the Day of Pentecost. It was revival when hundreds of thousands were saved during the First and Second Great Awakenings. It was revival when 150,000 walked down the aisles of Brownsville Assembly.

Any time lost sons and daughters call on the name of the Lord and are reborn, that’s revival!

REVIVAL IS A RETURN

When wayward saints begin to abandon their religious ways and return to true relationship with the Lord, that’s revival!

Religion has always been man’s attempt to come close to God, but revival is God coming close to man.

Many have experienced the joy of salvation that comes with rebirth. Unfortunately, over time many allow that joy to fade. Often what begins in the spirit ends in the flesh. We don’t pray like we used to. We don’t share our faith like we used to. We don’t grieve over sin like we used to. We start to lean upon ourselves and no longer lean upon our Savior.

Thankfully, the Lord keeps the doors open for those trapped in the prison of religion to step out and return to Him.

REVIVAL IS REPENTANCE

Without repentance, there can be no revival. Today many attempt to cheapen and redefine the meaning of repentance. They contend it has no place in the life of the believer except to simply change one’s mind.

Friend, Jesus began His ministry with one message: “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” In His last address to the seven churches in Revelation, seven times He says, “Repent!” Let us not minor on something Jesus majored on!

After commending the church at Ephesus for all the good things they were doing, Jesus rebukes them by saying, “I hold this against you: You have forsaken the love you had at first. Consider how far you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first” (Rev. 2:4-5, NIV).

He didn’t say, “I need you to change your mind about your ways.” He said, “I want you to change your ways! Come back to Me. Fall in love with Me once again.”

I assure you that revival entered the church at Ephesus the moment they heard His words and repented of their ways.

If you are away from God or have sin in your life, I urge you to take heed of these grace-filled words. Repent! Turn away from your sin, and turn toward your Savior. When you do, that’s revival!

REVIVAL IS REFRESHING

I’m writing this while I’m looking out the window at the fresh blossoms on the trees in my front yard. Spring is in the air. It’s a welcome and refreshing sight after a long, cold winter. Everyone in my neighborhood seems to be happier now than they were a few weeks ago. Why? New life is refreshing.

Peter called out to a crowd of onlookers in Acts 3:19, “Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord.”

When we find ourselves stuck in the sickness of our sins or robbed of life from our religious ways, we can turn back to God and take a drink from the fount that never runs out. That’s revival!

Like spring, refreshing comes with excitement and exuberance. Yes, people get emotional. I, for one, do not know how one can be inwardly refreshed without it being outwardly expressed. I welcome it in the church. After all, we are God’s chosen, not His frozen!

REVIVAL IS RESTORATION

When families and relationships are restored, that’s revival. When your identity in Christ is restored, that’s revival. When things that have been lost or stolen are restored, that’s revival.

Jesus said that He came to seek and save that which was lost. He wasn’t just speaking about saving you from the fires of hell, but to the restoration as sons and daughters of God. For Jesus, the focus is not on where I come from but on where I’m going. He pulled you from the fire to set you on fire!

REVIVAL IS REFORMATION

True revival cannot be contained. Revival fills up the saints and spills out into the streets. It finds sinners in the highways and byways. It affects the atmosphere of communities and cultures. True revival brings reformation. That’s revival!

A series of meetings in your church will do little to transform your city. But let the fires of true revival enter into your church house, and it won’t be long before it touches every house. Revival may start within an individual or church, but like a spark to a dry field, that fire cannot be contained; otherwise, it will not be sustained.

God’s purpose for revival is the forgiveness of our sins and the healing of our land. Currently our sins are plenty, and they stand before us. Our land is sick and in need of healing. The answer is not going to be found in a person or a place but in a position.

God gave His people a pattern for finding that position in 2 Chronicles 7:14. He said, “Humble yourself, pray, seek My face, and repent of your own wicked ways.”

I’ve experienced revival in my life, and I’m ready to experience it once again in our nation. I’m on my knees, and now you know what I’m praying for.

That’s Revival – Daniel K Norris.

Remembering Steve

Written by Frontlines. Posted in Frontlines Stories

I count it an extreme honor to have served alongside Steve for the past decade.  It was in 1996 that my life was forever changed as a result of the Brownsville Revival.  I didn’t know then just how much of a role the evangelist at the revival would play in my life.  Since that time, he’s been a mentor, a friend and a fellow warrior. He will be greatly missed.

Steve once said that “a soldier is not tested in the barracks, they are tested on the battlefield.”    That’s exactly where he lived his life – on the battlefield fighting hell for the lost souls of men.

These last five years the battle certainly intensified.  Steve said we were watching him fight through the greatest trial of his life.

“I’m going through this”,  Steve would say. “I’m coming out the other side.”

That was Steve, always the optimist in every situation.  He processed everything through the lens of eternity.  There were times the pain of the cancer would be so intense that he couldn’t hold it in anymore.  He would cry out in agony.   You felt helpless, there was nothing you could do except be at his side.  He would then compose himself and ask that we not be concerned about his pain, “This is nothing compared the suffering our Savior endured on the Cross.  Oh the pain, no one could imagine that sort of pain.”

Yes, Steve was an extraordinary man.  The likes of which one often reads about in the journals of the great saints that preceded him.  No doubt that is how history will remember him as well.

I’m going to miss the times we spent together sitting in his office as he spoke of the things he learned in the past and then we would dream of the future.  He shared much wisdom during those times and I’m eternally grateful for those moments, but the most impactful thing for me was not found in what he said, but in what I saw.

For ten years I was able to see another side of the man of God.  The one that lives away from the platform.  I saw the kind of faithful father he was to his children, the devoted husband he was to his wife and the kind of person he was when few were looking.  As impressive as he was behind a pulpit, I was even more impressed by who he was as a person.

One afternoon we sat in his office discussing a mutual friend of ours who had fallen into sin.  Most wouldn’t have thought the conversation came close to venturing into gossip, I didn’t at the time.  Steve stopped mid sentence and began to pray for the brother and asked Jesus to forgive us for speaking negatively.  He then focused the conversation on reaching the lost.  The lessons learned that afternoon will stay with me forever.

Steve didn’t have to live his message, because his message was a true reflection of his life.  Just as it should be for all of us.

Steve was a man of passion so he preached with much passion.  He was a man of holiness, therefore he preached about living holy before the Lord.  Steve cared about the eternal souls of man, so he refused to quietly let anyone continue on their way to hell.  With tears in his eyes he compelled sinners to come to Jesus in the altars of a sanctuary, and with tears in his eyes he’d plead with individuals in the streets.

I was once asked by a good friend to give three things I’ve learned from being around Steve.  I’ll offer those to you here.

First, LIVE FOR ETERNITY!

You could see the mark Leonard Ravenhill had left on Steve.  He lived with his eyes fixed on the next life.  Everything was weighed with eternity in mind.  Steve once shared a story about Leonard calling him in the middle of the night.

“What are you doing, Stevie?”

“I’m sleeping.”

“I’ve been up praying for you for the past hour.  I need you to come over right away!”

Steve said when he walked into Ravenhill’s office he was in his chair staring at the ceiling.  He asked Steve to make him a sign that simply said “Eternity”.  He told Steve, “when I look up from my desk all I want to see is the word ‘Eternity’”.  Leonard went to be with Jesus a few weeks later.

Ravenhill’s epitaph reads, “Are the things you’re living for, worth Christ dying for?”

Steve sought to live his life in such a way.  He wanted everything he did to be worthy of the price Christ paid for upon Calvary.  You and I would do good to do the same.

Second, DRAW YOURSELF A CIRCLE!

I am going to miss hearing Steve ask me, “You got a minute?”  For Steve, a minute usually meant at least an hour.  I was always humbled that this man of God who had been used to speak to millions would take the time to spend an hour with me.  Especially as the cancer progressed and the pain intensified.  Here he was battling for his life, and he wanted to take time to impart into me.  He did this with so many.

One of the greatest lessons he shared with me, and more importantly modeled before me was to draw yourself a circle.  Wilkerson had drilled it into him.  “You want to know why Wilkerson was the way he was, or why I’ve been able to accomplish so much?  It’s because I learned to draw myself a circle and stay in it.”

By this he meant to literally draw a circle and place everything in that circle that the Lord has told you to do.  These things you say yes to.  Anything that would come your way that would take you out of your circle you say no to.

I would sit on the other side of Steve’s desk as a call would come in offering him what most would consider to be an incredible opportunity.  He’d humbly decline.  Why?  It wasn’t in his circle.  Another lesson learned.

Lastly, IT’S ALL ABOUT SOULS!

During the revival Steve often said, “You don’t see a hearse pulling a U-Haul.”  He understood most people spend their lives accumulating stuff that one day would simply perish.  The only thing of eternal significance is the souls of man.  “People are the only thing you get to bring past the threshold of death”.

Steve sought to be responsible for delivering millions to the Savior.

He told me, “when I look out into an audience I look for the person who seems to be the furthest away from Jesus and I preach straight to them.  I know if they can understand what I’m saying then everyone will understand the message.”

Every message he preached, and every interaction he had with people he saw as an opportunity to win one more soul for Christ.  Jesus said, “Go!”, so Steve “Went!”

Steve was truly a battle tested warrior.  A general in the Lord’s army who dared to do great exploits for the Lord.  Some may mistakenly believe that the cancer won the fight, as if the enemy scored a great victory when Steve passed from this life.  Oh, they couldn’t be more wrong!

The truth is the enemy lost the fight back in October of 1975 when Steve called upon the name of Jesus for the first time.  The enemy then lost every day that Steve lived.  The enemy lost every time a lost soul came home at the plea of this great evangelist.  And the enemy will continue to lose as Steve’s legacy lives on in the lives of thousands of spiritual sons and daughters.

Today the earth feels significantly lighter as one of God’s generals, who carried such spiritual weight has exited this life and entered the next.

Though I am deeply saddened at the loss of a brother in arms, I am stirred more now to honor his legacy by living each day with eternity in mind, staying inside my circle and doing all I can to bring in the harvest.

There is a void to be filled. So much work to be done. We have no time to waste! Though no one could ever fill Steve’s shoes, each of us can strive to walk in his footsteps.

Steve lived with his eyes fixed on the finish line, let us do the same and run the rest of this race with everything we have in us.   Steve would tell you that Heaven is depending on you and the world is in need of you!

Oh to have seen the moment when Steve passed the finish line and received his crown.  He lived for that moment.  It’s time to do the same.

Remembering Steve – Daniel K Norris.

Discerning Transitions

Written by Daniel Norris. Posted in Uncategorized

Everywhere I have ministered over the past several months I’ve asked a simple question, “How many feel as if you have been in a significant and prolonged season of transition?” The response is always overwhelming. Nearly every hand in the church will shoot up attesting to the fact. No doubt many reading this could testify that you’ve been feeling transition as well.

I write because so many miss the fact that what they have been feeling individually is actually connected to what God is doing corporately in the body of Christ. Right now, there is a transition taking place between spiritual seasons.

God established seasons from the beginning of creation. Genesis 8:22 tells us that, “as long as the earth endures, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night will never cease.” Just as it is in the natural, so it is in the spiritual. Discerning the season and more importantly the transition of seasons is key if we are to be prepared for the next.

The Church is in a season of transition. God is presently at work breaking up the fallow ground. Fallow ground is land which was at one time plowed open, but has laid dormant for a season and has since hardened. This is a natural part of the process of letting the ground rest through the winter season. However when the farmer discerns that spring is on the way, he sets out once again to work the fallow ground with a plow, turning over the soil, breaking and preparing it to receive fresh seed to produce a harvest.

The Lord is placing His hands into the soil of our lives and the life of the Church to break up the fallow ground. Like a skilled farmer, He is tilling and turning the ground beneath our feet. This is the reason why we have felt so much turbulence and recognized that we are in a state of transition. It would be easy to personalize this season, believing that God is working in you and around you to move you else where. Though this may be the case for some, it is not for all.

It is important to know where God has firmly planted you, that way you don’t mistake a transition in season to be a transition in position. Stay where the Lord has called you. If you have not received a clear word from the Lord, stay true to the last word you heard.

The Lord is turning over the soil and uncovering stones. These stones are secret sins that were allowed to remain hidden for a season, but that time is coming to a close. Those that have not found a place of true repentance, God is bringing into the light. This is why many fallen leaders have been exposed in the last year.

God was silent for a season giving space for leaders to repent. However, because of His great love, He will not allow any of us to remain in a place of sin. It is a work of His grace to expose us to the light, regardless how humiliating it may be for the moment. His concern is our future destination, not our present discomfort.

God loves each of us and His Church too much to allow things to remain hidden. These things must be extracted if the Church is to be prepared for the next season. Do not miss your opportunity to get things right with the Lord and return to a place of holiness! If God has His finger on hidden sin in your heart, take it to Him so that He may deal with you in private before He must deal with you in public.

Allow Holy Spirit to move through you. Follow the Psalmist David in his prayer, “Search me, O God, and know my heart; try me, and know my anxieties; and see if there is any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting” (Psalm 139:23-24).

While removing the rocks, God is also uprooting weeds. The weeds are the seeds of the past the enemy has sown. Often, these are hurts, offenses and cares of life which choke and hinder fruit from fully flourishing. It’s time to let go of what you’ve held onto. Your future is not in your past and you cannot carry these things into the next season. They will hinder your growth. Forgive others and embrace unity with those the Lord has placed you around.

Let Him complete His work of uncovering the rocks and uprooting the weeds. Let Him awaken the soil of your life and prepare it for what is next.

Transition is taking place. The winter season is coming to a close. Fresh spring rains are on the way. Times of refreshing and new life is quickly approaching. God is about to visit His Church in the coming days with an unprecedented outpouring for those willing to position themselves for it.

I have spoken with so many pastors who are saying they are personally feeling the draw to return to the prayer closet. Others are feeling that it’s time to start making room for God to move in extended meetings. Each are confirming that there is a window opening in the heavens for revival. Don’t miss the season!

Jesus charged the multitudes, “Whenever you see a cloud rising out of the west, immediately you say, ‘A shower is coming’; and so it is. And when you see the south wind blow, you say, ‘There will be hot weather’; and there is. Hypocrites! You can discern the face of the sky and of the earth, but how is it you do not discern this time?” (Luke 12:53-56).

The seasons are changing. Discern the transition and position yourself correctly in the midst of it. Surrender to that inward pull to come back to place of private prayer, devotion and holiness. Fall on your knees and experience the clarity of His voice and the sweetness of His presence. Pastors, call the church back to the altar of prayer. Position your people to seek the Lord while He may be found. He is ready to visit His church, if we will open the door!

Discerning Transitions – Daniel K Norris.

It’s Time for Some Christian Profiling

Written by Steve Hill. Posted in Frontlines Stories

The term profiling is relatively new in today’s vocabulary. It became nationally popular in the early 80s, when the public suspected and targeted a person, or persons, on the basis of some characteristic, behavior, color, race or religion. This has become known as profiling, usually carrying a negative connotation.

Before jumping into biblical profiling, which is a major step in God’s direction, let me share with you my horrifying experience of personal profiling. I speak from an event sketched in my memory forever. This is a story I’d rather not relive, but I will offer it up for your benefit and to lay a firm foundation for the value of profiling others.

During my B.C. (Before Christ) days, I was known for trouble. Serious criminal behavior. There was really no need to profile me. One look and you knew I was guilty of something. I had been arrested 13 times for everything from car theft to heavy narcotic drug dealing. Even today there are countries that won’t permit me across the border because of some felony charges committed close to four decades ago. Sounds ridiculous, but you reap what you sow.

Why You Should Speak in Tongues

Written by Steve Hill. Posted in Frontlines Stories

Every one of us has incredible stories to tell. Our religious backgrounds are wonderfully different. We all have a myriad of mentors, some who have moved on to their reward, others who are still sowing into our lives.

I was raised Lutheran. Now I’m probably a Luther-costal. This last week I was spending time with a few friends over the phone. One was Church of God, another a former Methodist and the third was Independent. All three have ministries of integrity and are well respected, known by many.

We have four major areas in common: We are saved, love Jesus, have had personal dynamic encounters with the Holy Ghost and regularly speak in tongues.

Perhaps I’ve already turned off some who don’t believe tongues are for today. That’s all fine, and I respect your viewpoint on this subject, but what I am sharing is extremely important and relevant to today’s fiery religious warfare that no one can deny is picking up steam.

My Encounter With God

Save Your Stones

Written by Daniel Norris. Posted in Frontlines Stories

Serious giants are facing off against the American church at this moment. Abortion has claimed more than 50 million casualties and counting. Terrorism is no longer isolated to foreign fields. Secularism is advancing through society and infiltrating the sanctuary, and radical agendas no longer hide in secret—they’re written into law.

The church has the spiritual weapons within its arsenal to take these giants down, so why do they still stand? Sunday after Sunday we come together to celebrate, singing “How Great Is Our God” and “Nothing Is Impossible.” We sing and shout about it while the giants continue to defy it. Sound familiar? (See 1 Samuel 17.)

No doubt we could debate for countless hours about what needs to change. I believe there is one thing we can all agree must change: It’s time to stop slinging stones at the saints and start saving them for the enemy!

Stoning the Saints

When David stepped foot onto the valley floor, he did so with five stones in his hand but one target in his head. David knew something we must be reminded of: Stones are for taking down giants, not one another!

Friendly fire is far easier than facing your foes. Engaging the enemy means leaving the comfort of your barrack to engage the enemy on the battlefield. That is why many opt to throw stones at their fellow saints. It makes them feel better for doing something rather than doing nothing.

However, this is a religious exercise that accomplishes little. The enemy knows that a house divided cannot stand, so he welcomes the infighting while he plunders the land. While we bruise our brothers, we embolden the enemy.

Websites, social media and message boards are not the place to settle disagreements, air out offenses or attack one another. There is a proper way to deal with these things (Matt. 18:15).

When a major Christian leader was grieving over the tragic loss of a son, he should have been able to trust his Christian family to grieve with him. Most did. Yet at the same time, the negative backlash was so viral it made headlines in major news outlets across the nation. The church didn’t win.

If you’ve ever slung a mean-spirited word toward a brother or sister in Christ, how is that any different from the Pharisees, who were always ready to fling stones at offenders, whether they be adulterers or apostles?

David could have remained in his greener pastures, surrounded by his little fold, blogging away about “The Great Saul, the Great Sinner.” He had been in Saul’s inner circle; he knew the king’s dirt. He could have turned his focus on his popular elder brother, asking, “Eliad, Hero or Zero?” After all, why hadn’t this heroic warrior gone toe to toe with Goliath?

Learn from David. He saved his stones for the enemy!

Jesus prayed in John 17 that the Father would make us one so “that the world may believe that [the Father] sent [Jesus]” (v. 21). Jesus then laid down His life so that we could be one with Him and each other. He has done His part; now it’s our turn.

Our unity is essential to the world seeing Jesus through us. It is vital to our success! It’s time we start to lead with our love and let that be image the world sees in the church.

Save Your Stones

When David picked up five stones, every one of them was for the enemy. Are you paying attention? It’s time to save our stones for the giants we face. Let me give a few examples.

Abortion. The liberal media finally woke up to one of the most horrific cases of infanticide ever practiced at an abortion clinic. For three weeks, the case against Kermit Gosnell was hidden from the public eye. That changed as informed Christians began to let their voices be heard. The hashtag#Gosnell began to trend on social media as the story was shared.

This is a stone worth slinging and proof that there is power in the unity of our voices. Let’s spend less time concerning ourselves with the latest gossip in the church or leader down the road and start getting informed about how the enemy is ransacking the land. There are great resources available to keep your eyes focused, your prayers sharp and your voice clear.

Redefining marriage. The number of politicians, public figures and even preachers coming out in favor of redefining marriage is accelerating. People are being swayed by public opinion.

But our convictions are not based on something as slippery as polls that change from day to day. They’re based upon the solid principles of God’s Word, which remains the same yesterday, today and forever. Now is not the time to sit down in the defense of the sacred institution of marriage. Standing strong in this moment is another stone worthy of slinging.

Terrorism. Several of my friends were present at the Boston Marathon finish line when the bombs went off. The wife of our associate pastor was fulfilling a lifelong goal of completing the marathon and crossed the finish line sheer minutes before the explosions. We are all grieving and praying for the families affected.

I am not willing to accept that this is the new normal. America needs the church to stand upon the watchtower and intercede on her behalf. I am not just praying that revival invades our land but that God would begin to speak to our prophets in such clarity that names, times and locations of attacks would be revealed. Don’t doubt. Elisha prophesied the secrets of the enemy to the king. I believe our lack of unity is preventing such lack of revelation. Who wants to sling some stones with me?

One Person Can Make a Difference

Can one individual make a difference? Ask David. He stepped onto the battlefield alone but was soon joined by an entire army after the first giant fell. It just takes one.

Are you willing? Change begins in you. Make up your mind that you will save your stones. Don’t sling them at one another; let’s strive for unity. Never forget, we are admonished to encourage one another, to edify one another and to strengthen one another in the faith (1 Thess. 5:11). So don’t drop your stone—just start slinging it in the right direction!

Save Your Stones – Daniel K Norris.

© From the Frontlines with Steve Hill | Site by PB