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It is with a heavy heart I write this letter. The passing of my dad has been ‘surreal,’ to quote his grandchildren. We, as well as many of you, thought he would receive total physical healing from his cancer. It was not the case. When we sat beside him as he passed from this life into God’s arms, I felt a sense of peace from his spirit. He was in a much better place where he could run and breath freely again. This was such a comfort!
As prophetic people, we have a wonderful gift, but when we “tune” it to finding other people’s mistakes, we can become sin hunters who sometimes end up missing what God wants to do.
Prophecy is not meant to tear people down. It is meant to build people up. It is a constructive element of the Kingdom, not a destructive element.
Many of us are uncommonly good at perceiving other people’s sin, and if we’re not careful, we get pulled into a cycle of negativity, where the negative is somehow more interesting to us than the positive.
The problem is that we become what we think! We become what we take in and what we see. And when our lives are focused on the negative, we lose our peace and don’t understand why we no longer receive as much revelation as we used to.
The peace of God is our phone line, if you will. Without peace, we don’t hear His voice. Without peace, it is difficult to see Him at work in people’s lives. The measure of peace we have in our lives reveals our understanding of the bigness of God.
Revelation comes from peace. If we want to hear God more and in greater, deeper ways, we need to learn how to walk in His peace and break the cycle of prophetic drama in our lives. We are prophetic—being aware of sin comes with the territory. But what we choose to do with that revelation will either help build the Kingdom or help tear it down. It’s up to us.
The problem is that a wide puddle won’t get us anywhere. We could stand in it and not get wet, because there is no depth. We need to be wells, not puddles.
What produces depth in our relationship with God? What brings our hearts to life and really teaches us how to live every day with Jesus? Here are a few things I’ve found helpful.
Holiness is not something any of us could accomplish on our own. Holiness is absorbed. It is not learned, earned or forced. It is not calculated with points for and against. Holiness is the result of a relationship with Someone who is holy. As we draw close to the One who is holy, we start acting holier. It is similar to holding a nail to a candle flame—the nail will heat up. It cannot help but respond to the candle’s warmth in a similar fashion. The closer we are to Jesus, the holier we become.
If the key to holiness is intimacy with the Holy One, the answer to the question of holiness is time spent in His tent:
For You have been a refuge for me,
A tower of strength against the enemy.
Let me dwell in Your tent forever;
Let me take refuge in the shelter of Your wings.
— Psalm 61:3–4 (NASB)
I want to thank you for your generous prayers and support for our mission efforts in India. Phase 1 of Training India 2015 is on schedule, fully funded, and already showing amazing fruit. We’ve hand-picked 50 pastors and leaders in India who will become the first Hindi-speaking teachers of The Art of Hearing God courses in Mumbai.
These 50 leaders started their training last February by attending an Art of Hearing God course I taught in Mumbai. Since that time, they’ve continued their instruction by reviewing the material online. Perhaps the most important part of their training will take place early this year as I will be leading a team of Streams Instructors back to India to give them personal training and mentoring that will prepare and release them to become teachers of the course.
It is a natural human tendency to find a rut and want to climb into it. When we find something that works, we tend to make it into a formula. Formula gradually becomes habit; habit becomes tradition, and the problem with tradition is that it tries to set boundaries for the mind.
When the “formula” becomes more valuable than Scripture, faith in God or true relationship with Him, something needs to happen. That something is called chaos.