A Season of Practicing
Recently, I’ve seen an increase in faith in the children’s ministry. We’re seeing greater anointing, more frequent miracles and thick expectation. And, it’s breaking out of KidMarvel! The children pray for their Sunday School volunteers, and these volunteers receive miracles, including having their legs grow out and missing items recovered through words of knowledge. Children healed and encouraged adults in the hallways during church, and gave accurate and helpful prophetic words to True Life’s pastoral and administrative staff. And, the kingdom is even moving outside of church! One of our children got a word of knowledge about another child who was lonely, and went and played with her, spreading the gospel of the Friend, Jesus. God is definitely on the move in True Life’s children.
The church has believed that there is “No Junior Holy Spirit” for years, years before I even arrived! These kids know God and have walked with Him. The difference I’m seeing now is the level of anointing! I don’t know what caused the increase, but we are seeing miracles more consistently and more children quickly activated than before.
The question I have now, that I invite the whole church to ask with me is, what’s it for? The presence of God is always for YOU but the anointing is for others. God encounters you because He loves you and you are His child. But He equips you so that you can change the world. Some say that He equips you in order to bring Him glory, but I think those are the same. A world that looks more like heaven does bring glory to its Maker. We need to know what we can do specifically in order to do both or either. I believe our church is in a season of discovering our unique missions, what we carry and practicing releasing that into the world.
Two weeks ago, we had a guest speaker from California come into our 1st - 5th grade Sunday School classes. She taught the children how to get words of knowledge to find missing objects. The children gobbled it up! When I walked into the room, toward the end of the session, they were sitting in a circle (a sort of filled in circle with children scattered inside and out), asking for more and more “missing items” to identify, and getting words of knowledge from God. Usually, we end our time with a game, but they just wanted to continue hearing from heaven about missing items.
There was a lot of power in their classroom that day. Getting words of knowledge is an in-pouring of His anointing and grace. Its for an outpouring somewhere. These children are arrows that God can point toward true, region problems that they will solve.
Other churches have utilized this gift to find missing children or to help boost their city’s economies. I wanted to know what are the problems of our region that we get to join our city leaders to find answers. As I pressed in for an answer, the Lord instead gave me a strategy of how to prepare for the answer.
He told me two things: One, we need to discover what the children (and we) carry and can offer before anything else. There is no point in understanding local issues before we know what part we can play. And, two, that we needed to start practicing more. Practice builds confidence and accuracy. Before God connects any of us to leaders who we can serve, we need to build up history with God and each other so that we can boldly and humbly offer our gifts to our community. There’s no need for God to connect us with influential leaders until we have a track record of accuracy to know that we can, indeed, help.
My volunteers are I are pressing in for ideas and increased direction on how to steward the children’s anointing, as well as our own. That way, we'll know where to point the arrows once our muscles are trained for battle.
You can’t Preach what you don’t Model
One of the most amazing things that I see in our ministry is how quickly our volunteers take off with the moves of God, often surpassing our children. It reminds me of the passage in 1 Corinthians 11, “Imitate me as I imitate Christ.” Sometimes, we don’t have to walk in a new gift or character quality for years before demonstrating to others how to do the same. Sometimes, you just need to be a few steps ahead. Oswald Chambers says that the “evidence of a leader’s strength lies not in the distance that separates us from other runners but in our closure with them, our slower pace for their sakes, our helping them pick it up and cross the line.” We need to learn to constantly grow, but immediately find someone to teach and release as we do.
Often, I tell my teachers and volunteers, you can’t preach what you don’t model. Another way to say it is that you can't release what you don’t carry. Because in the spiritual realm what you teach is so much more than information, it needs to also include impartation. However, that doesn’t mean don’t preach about words of knowledge if you have never given one. Instead, go out and give a word of knowledge and then come back to Sunday School and tell the kids about it! Keep growing!