KOPs = Kall Out the Prodigals
A Pastor’s Dream: Ten years ago the Lord stirred me up to go into full-time Christian ministry. That entire year I believed that I would be involved in youth ministry. At the time I was in charge of the Christian Education department of our church in Redding. When no ministry opportunities opened after a year of waiting on the Lord for His leading and direction, I came to the end of my dream. I still spent my spare time in church teaching children and involved in other activities, but no doors opened in the way of working full time in ministry.
After leaving dinner with my pastor and his wife on a Friday night in May 2011, Diana and I “felt like” we had somehow missed God’s call for us. That night we laid down the dream of working full-time for the kingdom and went to sleep. The next morning I received a call from a friend in Lewiston. The pastor of the church there, who also worked for my friend full-time, had given his two week notice. The little flock there was interested in having me work among them as a pastor. A few short weeks later I was officially called by this local church. This had to be God’s way of answering our desire to serve Him to the best of our ability! We moved to Lewiston just a few weeks later, in June of 2011.
We have now been in Lewiston for almost nine years! It has been so rewarding and challenging, and the Lord is not done with us yet. One of the things that has become very clear to us and for many ministry leaders all over the world– we are losing our younger generations. LCC (Lewiston Community Church where I work) has always been aware and tried to meet the needs of the young people, not only in our fellowship, but also those in the neighborhoods close to us. It seems that, while we continue to work and pray, we are not seeing what we want to see except in a very few, that is, to see young people truly on fire for the Lord, growing in their own life in joy, love and understanding of the Bible. Consequently, many are not witnessing to their peers.
However, recently, the Lord has brought about many circumstances to bring me to a point of intensive optimism for the future. A few months ago the Lord put it on our hearts to invite our high school students to our home for dinner, sharing our lives and hopes for them, and allowing them to communicate with us about their own ideas, views, and even about their doubts. This has set the stage for renewed relationships and discipleship. We are now meeting (as possible in the future when the COVID 19 restrictions are lifted) 2-3 times per month for Bible study, prayer, sharing and mentoring, as well as recreational opportunities.
THE REAL BREAKTHROUGH
On March 23, 2020 we had the opportunity to attempt to help a woman from this area to enter Redwood Adult and Teen Challenge in Eureka. Later that night the Lord led our driver to meet with a brother who had been a ministry leader under his Dad in the Jesus movement of the 1960s and 70s. throughout Northern California. This brother was at the forefront with his father in helping a generation of “hippies” who had been saved in the Jesus Movement starting in the late 1960s. They helped disciple, train, and encourage these brand new believers. Those new believers learned quickly and went back to their friends and evangelized even more young people. That truly impacted me as I heard names of people I have known for many years who were key in this real revival. That got me to thinking…
Maybe the Lord is moving now again at the end of the age. There are many things that came together that week for me that will be the subject of future articles, and maybe even books. The Lord, in a time of powerful intensification, gave me a dream. I have not been able to shake it. It has consumed my thoughts and has inspired new vision for me personally as a lover of Jesus and as a minister in God’s precious family–the Ekklesia or gathering of God’s people out of the world, which is really One Body in Christ.
This vision is just that, a vision. It is something that the Lord has laid on my heart. I am in the process of reaching out to trusted folks both locally and internationally to begin to pray about the possibility that God is truly moving, and asking Him for wisdom and guidance as we move forward. I have written these things down on my own personal ministry website that I pay for each year. It is not a part of the church where I serve as pastor. But I am asking for individuals in this wonderful family to pray for me and to consider what part they can play in reaching our young people — infusing and encouraging them with a fresh vision and filling of the Holy Spirit, and working together as the One Body, so that the whole of the born again church can be able to take part in a harvest of souls for our Savior’s Body. (See Romans 1:11-12)
Based on the Word of God’s Promises & Direction:
Malachi 4:5–6 (ESV): Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the great and awesome day of the Lord comes. 6 And he will turn the hearts of fathers to their children and the hearts of children to their fathers, lest I come and strike the land with a decree of utter destruction.”
(SO, we are praying and sensing that the Lord is sending a spirit of Elijah on us to have our hearts turned to young people at this important moment in history.)
Isaiah 43:19–21 (ESV): Behold, I am doing a new thing;
now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?
I will make a way in the wilderness
and rivers in the desert.
20 The wild beasts will honor me,
the jackals and the ostriches,
for I give water in the wilderness,
rivers in the desert,
to give drink to my chosen people,
21 the people whom I formed for myself
that they might declare my praise.
SO, we believe God is doing a new thing in our time and moving by His Holy Spirit and will provide and guide us as we go along and see His glory.
Proverbs 29:18 (ESV): Where there is no prophetic vision the people cast off restraint, but blessed is he who keeps the law.
So, we believe we have received a prophetic vision that will keep us in the Lord’s will pressing towards the prize of pleasing Him and seeing a harvest of souls.
1 John 3:23–24 (ESV): And this is his commandment, that we believe in the name of his Son Jesus Christ and love one another, just as he has commanded us. 24 Whoever keeps his commandments abides in God, and God in him. And by this we know that he abides in us, by the Spirit whom he has given us.
So, we believe that we will win our young people by loving them and each other as Christ has loved us ~ John 13:34
Acts 2:17–18 (ESV): “ ‘And in the last days it shall be, God declares,
that I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh,
and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,
and your young men shall see visions,
and your old men shall dream dreams;
18 even on my male servants and female servants
in those days I will pour out my Spirit, and they shall prophesy.
Jesus came to do a new thing, to bring a new way, to provide rivers in the desert. We are going through the valley of the shadow of death and into the valley of decision. God is raising up the One Body, those who have been abiding in the Vine, to call out to the prodigals, the dry bones—to come alive again and to come home to the Vine. Those who do come back to the vine are to be trained (2 Tim.2:1-7), and sent (Mark 6:4-13) to bring in the harvest.
A.S.P..– ACTION STEPS & Protocol
Before, during, and after…all in PRAYER in the Spirit
Needs & “Like to Haves”
- Korg D1 portable digital Piano-keyboard for remote and home based ministry And later youth outreach $650.00
- stand for keyboard and synthesized (already own the synth) $125.00
UPDATE on the above Needs post—the Lord has provided two keyboards for this ministry—one for me and one for a younger brother who I hope you will all hear a word of testimony from soon—stay tuned! We still need another stand and a piano bench. They run around $60.00 for the bench and $152.00 for the combo stand for the 2nd keyboard and synthesizer.
I should not be so stunned when the Lord provides in abundance like he has even just yesterday. On the first keyboard the Lord provided all we have to do is to pay for the shipping to get it here…approximately $120.00– and this is an exceptional, portable digital piano with weighted keys (plays like a real piano) and is light enough to take into the parks and “compel them to come in.” I have desired to have a piano that I could practice on and enjoy in my home for many years. I sold a real piano I owned for a long time over 20 years ago and when I moved to Lewiston I rally had to get back in shape playing…at the church. Now the Lord has showered this gift on me and it is a real blessing!
Thank you Lord for you are the giver of every good and perfect gift! Glory to your name and thank you Lord for the generosity of your people!