By Rhonda Jones
Just recently, the pastor and a few dozen members of the church I attend went to the annual Transformation Conference in the San Jose, California area, and they came back fired up and passionate about reaching the community with the gospel of Jesus Christ. During the message the pastor shared that he’s had a heart for ministering OUTSIDE the church for over 20 years and now he is even more encouraged. This doesn’t mean that the church has not done a lot in the community, but he believes the church should have an even greater influence. I agree. We’re all familiar with Matthew 9:35-38:
“Jesus went through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness. When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.”
Pastor Daryl said that after going to the conference, he saw this scripture differently. First of all it says that Jesus WENT through all the town and villages, teaching the good news. He didn’t wait for the people to come to him or the temple, but he went where the people were.
Next, while he was sharing the good news, we was also ministering to their needs. It says Jesus was healing their sicknesses and disease. We also know that Jesus fed the people. Therefore, not only did Jesus share the Word of God he meet their needs, and we as Christians must do likewise. It is not enough to share Christ and then just leave new converts on their own. New believers must be discipled. I love Tom Scarrella’s short video on How to do Supernatural Ministry where he thoroughly covers this topic. We must be willing to help them along as needed or provide for their immediate needs if we can. Jesus had great compassion for the unbelievers and saw them as sheep without a shepherd. He was not judgmental and did not look down on them.
Lastly Jesus said, the harvest is ready, meaning the people’s hearts were ready to receive Jesus but there weren’t enough Christians available or willing to share, disciple, or reach out to them. Too often, we don’t share the gospel because we’re too busy, caught up in our own life, don’t have compassion for others, or we just plain scared! Personally, I believe it should be a pastor’s responsibility to train and equip the church for ministering to others and teaching them how to lead people to Christ. Not just tell them but show them. This training should also include specific instruction and then the opportunity to practice until we feel comfortable doing it and it becomes “not” something we do, but who we are in Christ, ambassadors for Him the minute we walk out the door.
God is moving! Maybe not in our own backyard, but He is moving mightily in communities that are sold out to Him and committed to fasting and prayer. In the video below, you will see how God dramatically transformed four cities when the pastors and people unified and prayed! I hope it will encourage you as much as it encouraged me. The video really emphasized that everything must be undergirded with prayer and often fasting. Even if we aren’t bathing in a community of sold-out believers like the ones in the video, we as individuals can heal our own lands of influence through deliberate and ongoing prayer. We can come together in small groups and see miracles! We can heal our families and pray for their salvation. It has motivated me to be more diligent in prayer to get the Lord moving in my life and my family. This video shows the true manifestation of 2 Chronicles 7:14.* Healing and transformation can take place when we submit to God’s Way!
*”If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”– 2 Chronicles 7:14
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