Morning Prayer Summary for Thursday, June 07, 2018

Mary led group in worship…

Pastor Ray shared…

Erika and I were talking about how there is always more of Him. We’ve been talking about this a lot. We can never be satisfied with where we are and what we’re doing. Yes, we’re content with what we have; we’re supposed to be content. But I know the Lord put it in us to yearn for more, to be hungry for more, to look for more, to expect more. Because there is more! You know how you can get to a point and you just go, “Is this it? Isn’t there anymore?” And the answer is, “Yes, there is more.” There is all the goodness of God, more of His presence. I like to picture His river flowing continually bringing healing waters, wholeness, prosperity, joy.

In Romans 12:9–11. How do we bring the light? We’re to be the light, but how do we bring it to others? I believe it’s through that love that He gave to us. He sent His only Son, He loved us that much. That love that we minister through us is the power of the Holy Spirit. People respond to it immediately. Romans 12:9 says, “Let your love be sincere,” meaning let it be a real thing. You know how that is? You can tell if somebody is real immediately. You can tell if they’re real and you can tell is it’s just something they say. “Hate what is evil. Loathe all ungodliness. Turn in horror from wickedness. But hold fast to that which is good. Love one another.” V. 10, “with brotherly affection as members of one family, giving precedence and showing honor to one another.” V. 11, “Never lag in zeal or in earnest endeavor, be aglow, be burning with the Spirit serving the Lord.” V 12, “Rejoice and exalt in hope, be steadfast and patient in suffering and tribulation, be constant in prayer.”


Thank You, Father, for the things You’re doing in us these days for the things that are being changed throughout this year… the year of the Holy Ghost and fire… we believe and know that’s true… signs and wonders and fire are upper room things that need to happen all over the earth in these days… we want to be an instrument of it and bring it to others so they can be changed too… it’s all about those we come in contact with…

Continued sharing…

Yesterday, I had it that we just pray in other tongues without putting our “brains” on it, without saying “this is what we’re praying for.” Just to pray in the Spirit. When you’re praying in other tongues, you’ll hear English words. For me, that’s the direction of the Spirit so I just flow with that direction. But yesterday, it wasn’t that way. I got a revelation to press ahead in the spirit and not let any English word that I think is coming up and taking me in a direction, but just to keep going in the Spirit. So we did that for a while.

I remember the story Brother Hagin shared about praying in other tongues, about how the Devil told him that he was wasting his time praying in tongues. Brother Hagin determined he was going to pray even more in tongues. The Devil kept on harassing him, telling him he was wasting his time. He went on praying in tongues for three to five hours. Then at the start of his fifth hour, he hit a “gusher.” The gusher wouldn’t have come if he hadn’t kept on praying in the Holy Ghost.

I remember being in a prayer meeting years ago that were not filled with the Holy Ghost so the pastor could only go so far in prayer. Beyond that, it was dry bones. That’s how I looked at it. Thank You, Holy Spirit, for the baptism of the Holy Spirit, for His direction, for being able to pray in tongues. I remember exactly where I was when I asked to be filled with the Spirit. It was wonderful, supernatural change that came. My life was never the same. If you’ve never received the baptism of the Holy Spirit, just ask Him. Ask Him to be filled with His Holy Spirit, baptized. Then step out and speak… Your life will never be the same again. Your ministry of prayer will be on fire. Definitely!


Thank You, Father, for fresh fire… for a fresh baptisms… for refreshing… for direction… thank You for leading us into all truth… bringing to our remembrance the things You’d have us to know for these days…

Erika shared…

Let’s pray about that. When you have a fire, you need fuel to keep it going. So let’s pray about some fuel that needs to be thrown on the fire. I want more fuel. I want the wind of the Holy Spirit to blow. Once that fire is blowing, a natural burning fire creates its own wind. Then there’s a cycle that’s created. So let’s pray about that and about fires that are starved of oxygen. They might have a bushel over their fires so they can’t breathe.


You had this in mind before the inception of the world that we would be all aglow, burning, on fire, lit up with a place to go… the wind, the wind, the wind… causing the fire to increase and burn hotter… more fuel, more wind… You gave gifts unto men for the perfecting of the saints and the work of the ministry, so we lift up those who are in positions of authority… five-fold ministry gifts… they have a mandate to give and deliver that which will equip the saints… we’re looking for them to come up, Father… to be all lit up… for the wind of the Spirit to blow through them… fire in the church…

Pastor Ray shared…

It’s up to us to stir ourselves up continually. We’ll never be judged on our intentions but we will be judged on what we actually did. Others around us including our families who are familiar with us, so our words… our fire has to be real. The yearning and desire for more must be our genuine heart-felt desire. It has to burn brighter and hotter.

Erika shared…

I want to read from a book called “Defining Moments” by Bill Johnson.

There is nothing in me that could ever be satisfied with having merely “good church meetings,” as wonderful as they are. While it is a great honor to see the demonstration of God’s power to transform lives, such an encounter is incomplete until it impacts the world around us. Awakenings, which bring about global shifts in the awareness of God and His purposes, are always in the heart of God. Charles Finney was used powerfully in what was called the Second Great Awakening. The breakthroughs in which he lived are now our inheritance and must be rediscovered and modeled for yet another Great Awakening—greater in every way than all previous moves because we live in the momentum created by such a glorious inheritance.

Erika interjected: This next part is about comments about the life and ministry of Charles Finney who was a revivalist. A great deal of his ministry was about the holiness of God. But a part that I was surprised to read about is the fact that he was touched with such joy in his life. Bill Johnson brings it together: the two components of holiness and joy. We don’t want to be locked into what holiness is. There was the holiness movement that said you had to have your hair a particular way and couldn’t wear makeup. That to them was holiness. But God has His definition of holiness that is different.

Joyful Inheritance

Today, our most common understanding of holiness is that it is very somber. In fact, many people today reject joy as a frivolous experience in their pursuit of holiness. It is not the idea of joy that is rejected, for that would be unbiblical. It is the experience of joy that so many find offensive. To such people, joy sometimes appears to be the opposite of holiness. Yet the Bible teaches us that holiness and joy are related.

Erika interjected: When brother Finney had his encounter with the Lord, he was so full of joy that every person he came in contact with, got saved because of a manifestation of joy on him.

Nehemiah 8:10 says, “Then he said to them, Go your way, eat the fat, drink the sweet, and send portions to those for whom nothing is prepared; for this day is holy to our Lord. Do not sorrow, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.” The context of this verse is quite interesting. The Word of God had just been read, and the people of Israel knew that they didn’t measure up to God’s standards. But instead of allowing the people to give a mournful response to God, the priests led them into celebration. The reason? They understood the words that were read. Think of it: the joy that starts with understanding God’s heart is what takes us into maturity and strength. This passage puts joy and holiness together: “This day is holy… the joy of the Lord is your strength.”

This truth is vital to understand. Charles Finney, a man who preached the holiness message with great effect, was in fact first transformed by joy. There is something profound about the effect of the joy of the Lord in a person’s life, taking him or her deeper into the beauty of holiness (living fully for God). It is tangible.

In the experience of my church, joy has been central. In fact, whenever this quality seems to be waning, I tell our people to find where they left their joy. Following Jesus must remain a life of joy. Joy, fully realized, has a profound effect on how people live. As a result, it impacts the sustainability of all revivals. Without joy, revivals end up falling short of becoming awakenings; therefore, they never develop into God’s ultimate goal—reformation. When church leadership chokes the joy out of the move of God, their wrong control also kills liberty and freedom, which are the true evidences that God is present and is doing as He pleases.

Joy is such a priceless commodity in heaven that it was used to inspire and motivate Jesus to endure the cross. He suffered crucifixion “for the joy that was set before Him.” (Heb. 12:2) If it brought such strength to Jesus in the ultimate earthly challenge, it certainly can enable us to experience a move of God that does not diminish.

Erika interjected: I believe that. We’ve had moves of God come and go and they incorporate different things… the manifestations are different, the operations of the Holy Ghost are different but it’s all because of joy. Why? That internal joy that He gave because now you’re free and a child belonging to God.

The day Finney had a face-to-face encounter with Jesus, everyone he talked to was soon converted. There was something, or rather “Someone” upon him that made surrendering to the Lord the only logical response for those whom he encountered. Learning how to maintain this sense of Presence is really what drove Finney to seek a greater baptism of the Spirit.

One of my favorite stories in all of church history is when Finney walked into a factory and though he said nothing, the Spirit of God upon him brought such an overwhelming conviction of sin and an awareness of his need for God that the owner, who was an unbeliever, shut down the factory to give room for revival. Many church leaders will not make room for a move of God, yet this unbeliever stopped everything that would profit him so that his workers could find peace with God. That man models a value that too few pastors and leaders hold. Great moves of God happen when people long for God to invade their environment and do as he pleases. He often starts with what is most sacred to us—our Sunday services.

And it is true. There must be a willingness to move out of our comfort zones, where we are in charge of everything, and let our hunger for God take over. For Charles Finney, it wasn’t a trip to a foreign land. It was a walk in the woods. Seldom do people find what they’re crying out for when they hold to their agenda and routine. There is something to be said about being outside of what we are accustomed to and plunged into something that is new and risky.

Erika interjected: That’s what I like about praying in the Holy Ghost. Not getting religious about it. So to bring about change and to rearrange, we’re looking for that, Father. We’ll not be stuck in a rut, or cling to our routines, not cling to that which we are accustomed to. But, Father, we are willing and hungry to step out and to receive something outside of the box. We know there is a plan and purpose that must be accomplished in the earth in this day and hour. We place ourselves on the altar again and say “Consume this sacrifice, Father, with Your holy fire. Consume all that does not produce, all that is not of You. We’re looking to be being filled with You, Your presence and power… glory… goodness… kindness in every way.

People once brought a blind man to Jesus to be healed. They thought if Jesus would just touch him, he’d be made whole. Mark 8:23 says, “so He took the blind man by the hand and led him out of the town. And when He had spit on his eyes and put His hands on him, He asked him if he saw anything.” The result, of course, was that this man was healed. But it is the process that is worth noting. Jesus took the man by the hand and led him out of town. To remove a blind man from familiar settings might almost seem cruel. But for this man, it was key to his miracle. Jesus often requires us to move beyond convenience to discover the kingdom.

One of the most offensive things I’ve heard leaders say is, “God knows we want revival. He can touch us here as well as He can touch us in Toronto, Brownville, or any other such place.” It sounds so spiritual but it’s foolish. Most of the individuals examined in this book were on a journey somewhere. It’s important to leave our convenience and comfort zones to find the pearl of great price. Wise men still travel.

Erika interjected: That’s what I like about reading books that are beyond what we’ve read before, books that push us into a place where we have to examine where we’re “living.” “I read things that make me feel warm and fuzzy.” That’s not what it’s about. So if there is an area in our lives that may need help, we need to read it. It’s almost “chaffing” when you read it. We’re talking about revival in the church, about the fire of God, the harvest. So if this chaffs you… good.

Sometime after Finney’s conversion, he discovered that believers in his community had partnered together in prayer for his salvation. There is little doubt that this discovery left a profound mark on his thinking in regards to massive revivals, the kind where great multitudes of people would be saved. This resulted in prayer being a central theme of his ministry—specific, calculated prayer for breakthroughs over certain cities and churches that led to the conversion of great numbers of people. Sometimes, extra focus was taken for a specific situation. Occasionally, his prayers were simple groanings beyond words. He learned that prayers that don’t move us won’t move God.

Charles Finney had a man pray for him. His name was Daniel Nash. This great prayer warrior would become the individual whose intercessions set the stage for countless thousands to come into the kingdom during Finney’s meetings. There’s little doubt that without those prayers going before him, Finney wouldn’t have had nearly the success or impact on the nation that he did. Breakthrough happened because of the prayers of Nash combined with the bold obedience of Charles Finney. The role of prayer was so vital that after Nash’s death, Charles Finney traveled very little in revival ministry. It was that crucial.

One of the most important aspects of Finney’s personal life and ministry is that he always hungered for more of God. His encounters with God are legendary. The fruit of those encounters is also legendary, establishing some of the high points of the Second Great Awakening. And yet he knew there was more. This hunger marked him in a profound way. Although he had experienced some of the greatest harvests of souls anyone has ever seen, he knew there was more.

Regardless of our various definitions of the baptism of the Holy Spirit, we can all probably agree it was essential in the life of the early church. And as we look through history at the greatest world changes, they all sought for and experienced this gift from God, viewing it as absolutely essential. For Charles Finney, there were at least two major baptism.

It’s rather strange to the natural mind, but there is a spiritual hunger that comes only from fullness and satisfaction. In the same way that we are exalted by humbling ourselves, or that we receive by giving, so we experience our greatest hunger from our greatest satisfaction or fullness. Such was the case for Finney. His overwhelming sense of the presence of God upon his life was just enough for him to cry for more. These God encounters became his new norm. And as they should be for any believer. It was the second touch that made such an increase impact upon him and the world around him. These baptisms of the Holy Spirit are the defining moments that shape the course of history. It is time for those who claim to have had this experience to actually hunger for more until the world around us stands up and takes notice that the living God is among us.

D.L. Moody says, I do not know of anything that America needs more today than men and women on fire with the fire of heaven; and I have yet to find a man or a woman on fire with the Spirit of God that is a failure. I believe it to be utterly impossible. They are never discouraged or disheartened. They rise higher and higher and it grows better and better all the while. My dear friends, if you haven’t this illumination, make up your mind you are going to have it. Pray, “O God, illuminate me with the Holy Spirit.”

Mary led group in worship…

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