I had the privilege this past weekend of spending many blissful hours with precious brothers/sisters from across the U.S., Canada, Australia and China. The majority of these precious ones represent relationships that have been made just over the the past 4 years. These are not just Kingdom Connections, Divine Appointments or any other spiritual jargon you want to use to describe them. The lives of these precious people have been intertwined with mine for Father’s Purposes in the earth and, I firmly believe, for all of eternity! We are family!
It is interesting HOW we entered into these relationships. We were able to enter into these connections across the planet because of the relationships that we have established with local brothers/sisters here in North Texas. You see, Father established various Kingdom communities through relationships with dear ones here in the DFW area. In the last 12 years or so, they have received us, permitted us to function and then, under the direction of the Holy Spirit, began to send us into the other areas of the country where opportunities were presented.
In every way, from financially to prayer/intercession, these local brothers/sisters have labored in the Kingdom and functioned as a regional expression of the Body of Christ, all the while sending us across the country as the Spirit led. So, it was a blessing for them to see all the fruit of their labor as they gathered in McKinney this past weekend!
I have to admit, I was a little concerned. I have been to TOO many conferences, gatherings, convocations, solemn assemblies, etc., where there was always an agenda and a dominant force other than the Holy Spirit. I understand there are different types of meetings in order to accomplish different things. I just sensed that our time together would be a true assembly where the Body was free to flow as the Spirit administrated. The weekend had been profusely covered in prayer and we had received several confirming words from brothers around the country that they sensed that our time together would be about the Body and not about a man and his ministry! We experience this type of function in the local communities. I was just curious if it would translate into a gathering with so many different people from varying backgrounds and religious pedigrees.
Earlier this year, I wrote a post about a dear brother by the name of Arthur Burt. You can read the specifics of what I am about to allude to here: A Significant Transition Over the last few years, Uncle Arthur has coined a phrase that is, I believe, extremely prophetically relevant. I’ve heard him say on more than one occasion, “The death of the one man show is over!” Actually, it is quite bombastic when he declares it. He doesn’t just say it! Regardless, when the simple statement is declared, you feel the authority of it all the way down to the spiritual bone.
The picture I’ve been given is like the bomb pictured above. Forgive the crude analogy. A bomb is basically some type of casing or shell that contains explosive material. The true power of the bomb lies in the material within the casing. The fuse which detonates the bomb, although it has a spark and some effusive energy, is no comparison to the force that is released when the bomb goes boom!
The fuse is the “one man show”. Though the “anointed man” has some spark, that function pales in comparison to the release of the Body. By and large, the effect of the Church has been devastatingly diminished by fixating on the glow of the fuse as it burned. God never intended it to be that way. It is an extremely limited expression of Christ and cannot fulfill Father’s purposes in the earth! We’ve watched the fuse burn for decades now.
Back in the day, as God restored functions and raised up men with phenomenal spiritual giftings, men exalted themselves, made names for themselves and built their own kingdoms. They severely missed the point! All the spiritual capability that was on display in the lives of chosen vessels was never intended to be harnessed by a single man. Come on, it is simple. Freely you have received……..freely give. The grace of Christ was given in order to flow through those instruments into the Body so that the Body would have the same DNA as its Head. Such graces were never given to be perpetrated on God’s People but, rather, God’s People were to receive those graces and BECOME those graces………corporately!
I will take the Ascension Gifts of Ephesians 4 to demonstrate what I mean. A man functioning in an apostolic grace is not to run roughshod over God’s People as a governmental figure. A true apostle does not dictate this, command that and become the center of everything. He is to declare apostolic doctrine and a revelation of Christ (both in word and example) to the Body of Christ so that they are aware of their individual and corporate purpose and destiny. A “sent one” is to impart into the Body the truth that all are sent and have a purpose/function in God’s plan to perform. One hint: it’s not to sit in a pew and listen to the apostle teach every Sunday!
Likewise, a prophetic grace is not intended to run around all over the place prophesying to individuals. Rather, a prophetic grace is to release the testimony of Jesus through the Spirit of prophecy into the Body so that all can prophesy. The transition of prophetic grace from the Old Covenant into the New Covenant is that it is now predominantly a “forth-telling” of Christ in which all members of the Body can function rather than one man standing up and declaring a “fore-telling” of future events. Sure, that element still exists in prophetic ministry but the point of the New is that Christ is here and He is to be formed in His People. And, the saints must be equipped so that they build one another up, every joint supplying until we all come to the stature of Christ!
In turn, a pastoral grace ingrains into the corporate expression the function of every member nurturing and caring so the entire Body becomes pastoral according to the Shepherd’s grace that flows to them and through them. A teacher should produce the hunger for and ability to study God’s Word in the Body; not just continually teach people all the time. An evangelist infuses the love for the lost and the Spirit that leads people to go into their spheres to reach the lost. An evangelist does not just come to a church service and preach to people who are already saved or who have been invited to a ‘revival’.
Do you see the difference? I hope so because this is how we are going to come to the fullness of the stature of the measure of Christ! The fuse must burn down, humbly serve and pass the spark over to where the true power lies!
So, as I assembled with the rest of my brothers/sisters who gathered in McKinney, I knew there was a level of Christ’s grace that I had never entertained before in my life. I knew that each individual brother/sister had a depth of Christ in them because I have experienced it in relationship with them. Anyone of them could have gotten up, taken the floor and functioned in their gifting/grace of Christ. Anyone of them could have taken the lead and it would have been “good”. But, by Father’s design, everyone assembled desired “God”; not just good!
One definition of the word ‘explosion‘ is a large-scale, rapid, or spectacular expansion or bursting out or forth. That’s what happened in our midst over the weekend. It was simple, organic and potent. While we were together, the fuse burned down! No one individual in his or her gifting stepped up…..the Corporate Body did! Brothers humbled themselves. Honored one another. Esteemed one another better than themselves. Their intent was not to display their “gifting” or “anointing” along with all of their fleshly trappings……….they were sensitive and obedient to the leading of the Holy Spirit! The fuse burned down………
………and BOOM! went the saints! The Body of Christ assembled over the weekend released an expression of the depth of Christ I have never experienced before. And, it wasn’t just during the “meeting” times. He was present the entire time. As we ate. In conversations in two-sies and three-sies. As we prayed for one another. As we ministered to one another. In homes. At the Holiday Inn. In the park. He dwelt with us. I’m not exaggerating.
The explosion of the Body was devastating to the works of the adversary. As the Body expressed Christ, we saw many people liberated from things that have held them back in their spiritual walk for years. (testimonies are still coming in) Young or older, it made no difference. Male or female….it was inconsequential. In Christ, all received life through the Body!
For me. the significance of this experience is monumental. We regularly experience moments like the one described above in the local assemblies. But, this gathering was different. People came from all over and the majority did not know one another. Yet, there was a unity and oneness in the Spirit that was birthed through prayer and worship and lovingly receiving one another as “brothers” rather than as “titles”. I saw a group from different places come together from various backgrounds, theologies and philosophies function as ONE BODY WITH CHRIST AS THE HEAD!
Father is gathering and connecting His People! The fuse has burned down! And the Saints go BOOM!
Keep your peace!