August 2014 Newsletter

Hi all,

You can see I have a new series entitled ‘Prophetic Update Summer 2014’ which focuses on things the Father and Lord have told me related to the upcoming Ezekiel 38 war between Israel and Russia and events leading up to it, and also about the body of Christ, the US, and world events to look for in the coming years. With all the fear, confusing Christian voices, and speculation out there, this will help bring clarity and peace.

Prophetic

I remember the visitation from the Lord during the Arab Spring, when I was in the Spirit and the Lord stood before me telling me some things He was going to do in this ministry and in the body of Christ in general. I kept asking about the Japan earthquake, the Arab Spring and so forth, and He finally told me something about Egypt and then said: “But what are these things to you? As for you, you must be about the Father’s business.”

I’ve remembered that as I continue to pray for our brethren around the world who are losing their homes, nations, and often their lives for being Christian. Revelation 6:10 records the apostle John seeing those who had been slain for ‘the Word of God and their testimony’ asking ‘How long O Lord holy and true, until you bring justice…’, and they are given white robes, which is the righteousness of saints, and told it must be a little time more until all who will be slain for their faith are fulfilled.

Confusion and fear?

We don’t always understand everything happening around us, but we know the end result will be the end of the government of man and the start of the government of God, led by Jesus ruling from Jerusalem. Where the rapture(s) fit, where the Russia/Israel war fits, how everything aligns with that Ezekiel 38 event isn’t clear. But certainly the next major event mentioned in scripture is that Ezekiel 38 war (I have a series on WWIII and the Feast of Trumpets/Rosh ha Shanah if interested in more detail)

Many of the Christian teachings ‘out there’ are fear based or looking for this conspiracy or that, and many are focused on this ‘prophet’ or that for the latest ‘hot off the press’ word from heaven for the smallest clue about what is happening. If a person is not careful they can become so wrapped up in all the voices that they lose sight of the Father’s business in their own lives.

It is good to be sensitive to what the Father is saying for our time, but it still gets down to being about His business for our lives, right now, today. There is a time to lay aside all the voices out there to focus on the Good Shepherd inside us and what He is saying to us only, for our lives.

I was thinking about some of the confusing Christian voices about the end times, and the Father interrupted my thoughts saying this:

“They misunderstand, and don’t understand what will happen. It will be as I told you, after that war (Ezekiel 38 war) there will be a treaty, and the center of militant Islam will shift to Europe. You’re already seeing the start of that now, and it will accelerate rapidly, for while they are watching the Middle East, profound changes are happening in Europe, and that is what they should be addressing.”

So watch for news of Europe becoming more influenced by Islam. Also remember the Lord has told me in 3 separate visitations over a few years to watch Turkey as an indicator on how fast things are moving along. So continue to watch for political changes in Turkey with strengthening ties with Russia, and them becoming more assertive in regional events as a measure of how things are moving. All He has said about ISIS to me was “ISIS will be checked, but remember what is happening behind the scenes, is Russia strengthening alliances throughout the Arab world.” Let us be about the Father’s business for our lives, and be in peace with that.

Chris’ room

We are awaiting the arrival this week of roof trusses, some 2 ½ weeks in the making as the first bid was $1000 to high, so we went with another company, but it caused a delay.

By the 22nd the roof over the new part should be on and the outside walls will be covered. That is good since we head to Scotland and England September 2-17 so all work will stop while we are gone, and the house will be secure. Tearing out existing walls will take place right before we leave.

We are looking at handicapped/walk in tubs and fixtures at this point and roll in shower and such. I’m doing the tear out work to save money, but it is a longer and more expensive process then we figured even with allowing 10% more – materials have risen so much since we priced it all this spring, but the Father knew all that so are staying in peace.

House church

What we see all over the network are people working through personality differences, becoming focused on growing in Christ, and suddenly coming awake to the fact our brothers and sisters are being uprooted from their homes and often killed in the Middle East – so a seriousness is arising in many disciples to truly grow as people in the Lord, and figure out what and Who is important.

There are new house churches in the network starting ranging from the central and eastern US, to Europe to India and parts of Africa. Each house church is different, with its own personality depending on the age and season of life of the people, the culture, and their background.

But we see the common elements that are also in scripture, in these modern house churches – a hunger for God to move in their midst, true, deep and healthy friendships developing, food, fellowship, prayer and worship founded upon a balanced understanding of the Word.

Leadership

While each house church is self-led, there are usually 1 or 2 couples (or individuals) who are the main leaders who tie it together. We don’t (CWOWI) use titles as in Paul’s days those words were verbs and action words, not nouns and titles as they’ve become in the auditorium church, but I will say this; We were raised in a church culture that thinks disciples are made by anointed meetings, but scripture says disciples are made through spiritual fathers and mothers.

In scripture as in many parts of the world today, young men learn to fix things around the house and parent by watching and participating with dad and grandpa. Young women learn to cook and parent by watching and participating with mom and grandma. This is why we see multi-generational relationships in the New Testament, the context was church in the home with spiritual parents – that is not condescending, it is the honoring of different graces in each person’s life, experience, and wisdom. We see this in CWOWI as well, and it is healthy and good.

Paul mentions key people who often hosted church in their house – Crispus and Justus, a Jewish and a Roman together in Justus’ house in Corinth. Also women like Lydia in Philippi, Nymphas in Laodecia, and men like Jason in Thessalonica and Philemon in Colossae. And the husband and wife team of Aquila and Priscilla are mentioned 6 times.

These were spiritual parents who opened their home and often led meetings, but the job of parents in the Spirit as in the natural, is to empower others so they can mature and be successful on their own. Leadership therefore in the New Testament meetings knew how to be quite as they empowered others to speak, move in the gifts of the Spirit, make mistakes and errors – and yet as a parent or grandparent, was present to guide when needed – not dominate.

That is why Paul wrote and we see as foundational in CWOWI from the start, II Corinthians 1:24: “Not that we would have dominion over your faith, but are helpers of your joy, for by your own faith you stand.”  Leadership in house church is a matter of all being equal among peers, but honoring the graces in each, coming alongside to help one another, make allowances for one another, for we are all moving deeper into the Lord and developing Christ-like maturity.

Personal note

Thank you for all your giving and prayers. I keep month to month the prayer requests you write on the envelope flap for our US based friends, and those you email me.  In this age of electronics I also take pictures of prayer requests on my phone, and scroll through them on a daily basis as I pray – amazing technology isn’t it?

We are especially touched by those who have taken it upon themselves to help us remodel Chris’ room to make a handicapped accessible bedroom and bathroom. It will be so amazing to be able to transition him from bed to bath and toilet without having to use sheer force and all my strength. Thank you for helping! Pray for us as we travel to the UK next month as well.

Blessings!

John and Barb

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