January 3rd was the last day I worked this year. A serious back injury which eventually led to surgery sidelined me and pulled me aside unto God. I almost wish every person could have a back injury and get sidelined the way I have been, because it would probably be a great time of spiritual growth in your life.
Truck driving is a very demanding job, (like many jobs), and now having had 4 months to focus on spiritual things has been one of the greatest blessings in my life. Do we have money for vacations, movies, eating out, new cars, and etc.? NO. But our bills are all paid and we have enough. It has been an incredible blessing.
During this time God has laid it on my heart to start something I’m calling, “Prayer School”, with a nickname of “Holy Spirit Dojo”. I have learned so much about prayer and the Holy Spirit during this time, that I am actually going to start a ministry around it. God opened my eyes to see that if my wife and I were willing to sacrifice a little, we could turn our living room into a school room and a sanctuary. Our house is becoming the building to launch “Prayer School”. We also have a secluded area right behind the Prayer School that is like a Secret Garden that adds to the facility. I will get some pictures together to show you what we have, so you can monitor the transformation taking place, because there has been much work involved to change our house into this Prayer School facility.
The winter was rough, and when I went down with my back a lot of things got behind on our property. When God challenged me with the project, I looked around at everything that would need to be done and realized it was going to take time. If I jumped back in a job it would take even longer. Due to the nature of my back problem, we have not collected unemployment or Workman’s comp. My wife works part-time at Cracker Barrel, our only debt is our house, and we had a little savings. God has provided our needs and the government has been no help at all. (I found out I should have been carrying temporary disability along with everything else. Sheesh! The list never ends.) But anyway, we are still succeeding.
I’ve said all this in order to explain why this subject is going to be a very big part of this blogsite. One: God has given me a lot of revelation during these 4 months of isolation with Him. Two: I am literally starting a men’s ministry around this at this very time. I’m actually turning my house into Prayer School. So you can imagine this subject is consuming a lot of my thoughts. Also, it is a very important subject! Perhaps praying is the most important thing we need to learn as new born Christians! The reasons for that will be explained as articles are written.
PRAYER IS THE MOST IMPORTANT THING WE NEED TO LEARN AS NEW BORN CHRISTIANS! BUT IS THAT WHAT WE ARE TAUGHT? WE’RE TOLD ABOUT IT, BUT MUCH IS LEFT UNDONE WHEN IT COMES TO PRAYER. THERE IS A GREAT NEED!
Eventually I will jump back into a job of some sort, and perhaps it might be interesting how God is working all these things out. Let me give you an example. Unbelievers will find this hard to believe, but if you could talk to my wife she would verify this. Since I was not working, I took my new knowledge and began praying earnestly for people to want to give their money to my wife! (As in the tips she would earn.) She has been our only source of income. Since praying daily for God’s favor on my wife’s labor, her hours have not gone up, but her income has increased by like 25%! It has been amazing!
However, prayer and the Holy Spirit is not a get rich quick scheme. God has been giving us just what we need to stay afloat and also progress on Prayer School. He has blessed us here and there with a meal out or occasional entertainment. God is so good I cannot put it to words, but so far we are not getting rich, nor is that my reason for seeking God. This brings us to the first point I would like to make concerning our new subject of “Prayer and the Holy Spirit”.
John Bevere makes an excellent point in his book: “Drawing Near”. If you go back in my articles you will find things I have written about a Civil War shaping up in the church. In his book he talks about two different kinds of Christians developing in the church.
1.) Those who follow God because of what he gives them.
2.) Those who follow God because of who he is.
Moses rescued a bunch of people from Egypt who wanted to follow God because of what he could give them, all of his blessings, as we say. But Moses was not such a person! He had already proven that he preferred the hardships of the desert, and the sufferings of Christ, to all the luxuries of Egypt! (Heb. 11:24-27)
So in Exodus chapter 33: 1-3 we find God so fed up with the Children of Israel that he tells Moses he is assigning an angel to take them the rest of the way to the promised land, because if he endures them any longer he will break forth on them in judgment! His holiness would wipe them all out! He said they were a stubborn and stiff-necked people, and the presence of God was not going to go with them!
John Bevere makes the point that these people would probably have jumped on that bargain with God. They just wanted out of the desert and into the land of milk and honey, and if that meant an angel would get them there, then who cares about the Presence of God? Sad to say, much of the church is infected with this same heart. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. How much time do you spend seeking the Presence of God? What sacrifices have you made for his Presence? What sins have you given up, and what sins have you clung to? Is he Lord? Master? Or are we like the Laodicean Church where man was running the church, not God! Jesus was on the outside, knocking on the door!
WE HAVE MADE JESUS TOO SMALL IN OUR OWN EYES!
Prayer School is about getting to know this one called the Holy Spirit. That can be more difficult than we think, because Jesus said in John 16:13 > “…for he (Holy Spirit) shall not speak of himself;…”
Hhmmm, so if the Holy Spirit does not speak of himself, then who is supposed to speak of him, and how do we learn of him, so that we can!
Moses was of a different spiritual makeup than those craving Egypt. In verse 15 he says > “If your Presence does not go with us, do not bring us up from here.”
Moses had already made this choice once before. Are you willing to live in a harsh desert rather than a land flowing with milk and honey? If God’s Presence was only in the desert, would you be willing to live there? Would the choice be a difficult one for you? My wife and I are living on much less right now, in order to create a place where a strong Presence of God can grow. Many times we only need to choose the desert for a short period of time, while we are proving ourselves and developing a vision God has given. Be that as it may, God’s Presence is Priority One. Will there be a spiritual civil war between those who seek his Presence first, and those who seek his blessings first? I say the war has already begun. Are you sure which side you’re on?
Prayer School, Holy Spirit Dojo, is all about developing a greater Presence of God in our life. How can we overcome these things that seem to drag us down? Well, oddly enough, a greater measure of His Presence is actually the supernatural answer to our greatest challenges. So this concludes our first article on this subject, and I hope I have wetted your appetite for much more to come. This is quite possibly the most important thing we need to know.
If we teach a Christian how to pray, we have not fed them for a day, but for a lifetime!