Disciple Making Movements (DMMs) are Critical in Canada

set free butterflyI believe Disciple Making Movements (DMMs) are critical to the growth of Christ’s kingdom in Canada. Typically, church growth in Canada happens when people move from one church to the next. And, if there are new people coming to Christ, rarely is anyone discipling them. The goal is to make disciples, who make disciples, who make disciples. But sadly, traditional church growth is falling out of line with Jesus’ Great Commission.

However, with DMMs, the Gospel appears to spread more freely led by Holy Spirit, and within sub cultures that are typically hard to reach, with little to no money, seeing often whole families and neighbourhoods transformed, and with disciples making disciples (multiplication).

If we are honest, traditional church planting in Canada looks much like franchising a business – get a pastor, a worship leader, a building, and then run programs, a marketing program, and pray for a harvest. This takes an incredible amount of time and money navigating multiple variables and headaches.

On the other hand, I have noticed DMMs are primarily focused on building God’s kingdom, rather than little man-made kingdoms on the backs of one or a few pastors competing with other little kingdoms down the street. But, if we are competing, are we actually building God’s kingdom?

Two years ago, while digging in the Word after stepping down from 10 years of traditional pastoral ministry, I really saw how Jesus left the building and sent out His disciples to do the same with incredible power to displace the darkness. Since starting DMMs myself, I have seen God move faster than ever. I am seeing Him do things I never dreamed of.

Typically, a traditional church in Canada has been built on what God did in the past, and is often then forced to put tradition in the way of the Gospel.

Several years ago, as a pastor, I visited a strong Roman Catholic country which never saw the European Reformation. My heart broke watching people do things in order to feel like God loved them. Coming back to Canada, I realized we weren’t that far off in our Evangelical circles. So much of what we do in church is putting tradition above the Gospel. We tend to do things according to church membership and culture that is not necessarily the Gospel. Therefore, too often the Gospel is an afterthought behind running programs, recruiting volunteers and sitting in a pew listening to one person tell us what they think the Bible means. Where and when do we even personally interact with Jesus and hear God’s voice?

On the other hand, I have found DMMs to be more easily in flow of Holy Spirit, with people abiding in relationship with Jesus, hungry to hear what Divine appointments God has for His people each day, much like in the book of Acts. People learn to be directly taught by Holy Spirit, while in meditation of the Word, while in relationship with Jesus and others, and then immediately walking in obedience. I see so much opportunity to partner with Jesus in spreading the Good News, healing the sick, and bringing new life!

In this new season, each day is a new adventure!

For example, I wake up to pray: “Jesus, I’m thirsty for you!” After spending time with Him and His Word, I then ask: “What do you have planned for today?” One day, it looks like an incredible conversation with a person while walking my dog, or praying for someone while grocery shopping. One day, it is feeding the homeless with my family. Another day, it is praying for a woman walking with a cane on the street in her 70’s suffering with sciatica and watching Jesus heal her completely. Another day, it is sharing the Gospel to a man involved in a cult. Another day, it is hosting 2-3 people in our home for Bible mediation, fellowship and prayer. The emphasis is on relying on Holy Spirit to direct us to the person of peace. In the first year of focusing on DMMs, I found myself discipling a dozen new people I had met just out on the town. There were so many Divine appointments. I have a new passion and joy in disciplemaking, without the need to find volunteers for any programs. I love it!

Jesus loves to take us on treasure hunts, but we need to step out to search for Him and for those He is calling to Himself.I see how the ‘build it and they will come’ mentality is not at all what He called us to do. That was actually Constantine.

Jesus actually restricted 90 percent of his time to 12 men. And out of the 12, he restricted a large portion of his time to three: James, John, and Peter. This is now my focus: A dozen people and primarily three, teaching others to do the same. It appears even within a ‘Bible Belt’, God is doing a new thing and people are hungry for more of Him outside the traditional church experience. I am finding so many people walking away or disillusioned with the traditional church. No worries. It appears to be an advantage. DMMs appear to be the way to find those who are hungry for Him. After all, it’s Jesus who is the Good Shepherd, not our programs, the effectiveness of someone’s preaching delivery, or style of music.

If you seek to build a church, you rarely produce disciples, but if you seek to make disciples, you always get the ‘church’ …building God’s kingdom. 

DMMs are refreshingly focused on God, worship, fellowship, discipleship and evangelism. Disciples are trained immediately on how to make other disciples. It’s contagious!

But, what if you’re in a traditional church??

The tricky thing is being called by God into a traditional church.  But, when a person sees herself as a missionary in a traditional church and she has a hunger for Holy Spirit, I believe more movement can happen within the traditional church too. (In fact, some traditional churches are seeing the reality of the Great Commission vs. the obstacles of their church model and are making these necessary changes.) The key is whether the church leadership is surrendered to Holy Spirit or willing to be.

Need a Disciplemaking coach?

A DMM coaching circle helps me to keep focused on the goal of walking in step with Holy Spirit listening for His lead, rather than relying on my personal theological knowledge. After all, we are leading people, not to a belief system, but to the person of Jesus whom we are in love with, to hear His voice for themselves, and know His abundant life.

To learn more, come to our workshop…

If the Gospel is spreading so fast around the world through Disciple Making Movements: Why Not Canada?

The summer of 70 healings.

Campfire.jpgThis summer I returned to camp speaking after taking a couple years off to rest. I remember telling God that I was ready for whatever He had planned. I was ready for Him to blow out any boxes I had put Him in.

I had no idea what would happen next…

This summer I spoke at two camps for teens.

Here’s the first story of the week at a camp for age 11-13 (130 campers). On Monday, I noticed a junior staff on crutches. He had pain and swelling and didn’t know exactly what happened. The doctors were confused too. He was discouraged. My heart went out to him. I prayed for his ankle while we waited in the food line. The pain diminished but not all the way.

On Tuesday evening, I had planned to speak on something totally different. I kept sensing that Jesus wanted to heal the junior staff on crutches and that I was to speak on how Jesus healed and then sent out the 12 disciples to heal. So I did. I shared a few stories from the Gospels of Jesus healing the sick. Then, I shared a few personal stories of when I have gone out doing street ministry in my city and seeing Jesus do some incredible things after we prayed in His name.

I asked the campers who had physical pain and I was shocked how many hands went up in a crowd of young people.

Then, I saw a bolt of lighting behind the campers as they looked at me. The main staff said I could keep going. I prayed aloud that Jesus would put angels around the camp.

Then, I instructed the campers around those with physical pain to ask for permission if it was appropriate to lay their hands on the injured area. I led them through simple instructions how to pray over those with physical pain or illnesses.  

Oh man… what happened next was mind blowing!!! We had some significant injuries healed. Torn ligaments healed, sprained ankles healed, no more crutches or pain for the junior staff member!! Plus, a staff member who had an infected tooth with a clenched jaw who had been finding it difficult to chew her food, became elated with tears rolling down her cheek realizing she had been healed… and on on and on… There were a few people still with pain and so we prayed one more time for them. On ‘Amen’, they were healed!

Almost on cue, the wind started blowing loudly, we heard a crack of thunder closer to us, along with lighting. We had to shut down the campfire, so I said, “Let’s holler – thank you Jesus on 3!” Oh man, the excitement and tears of joy and celebration!!! I felt like we were at a Hockey game and our team won Gold.

The next morning we saw evidence of how God kept the camp completely dry! Outside the boundaries of the camp were flooded but inside were completely dry. I remembered I had prayed for Jesus to put His angels all around the camp. We heard the stories of all the kids that experienced healing. Kids were in awe of God! All week there was such a buzz! Campers who previously weren’t into prayer or even God, were eager to pray for others for anything. One girl had lost her retainer and for days the cabin had all searched for it. After the healings happened, they were motivated to pray to find the retainer and went to bed. When they woke up, it was in the middle of the cabin. Jesus even cares about a retainer. 🙂

The junior staff who had been on crutches was running the rest of the week doing camp games with the campers with the biggest smile on his face. He was no longer discouraged. Thank you Jesus!

We prayed again in Thursday morning chapel after some more people had sprained ankles, since Tuesday night. In total, God chose to heal about 50 people throughout the week- both campers and staff of physical pain or injuries!

Early that week, I had also sensed a ton of attack and discouragement around the staff. I took 7 female staff through deliverance/freedom prayers and trained 3 others to take several more staff through deliverance. I trained the camp director to take all the male staff through cutting off lies from the enemy, while I took all the female staff through cutting off lies. There was significant breakthrough. And you could see it in their faces!

Unreal week.
Never have I experienced such a week of camp.

When the parents showed up, there was such a buzz of the stories! Kids who didn’t believe in God were in awe! At the Last campfire, kids shared over and over of how they never knew God was so real and powerful! 

Hallelujah!!! God was on the move… I LOVED how the faith of children brought such powerful healing and experience of God’s presence!

One male staff, son of a pastor, even rededicated his life. God is sooo good! He said, for the first time God became real to Him. His faith became now not just ‘cause of his pastor dad. Oh God so blessed my heart.

Honestly, it was 32 degree heat on average but I kept having goose bumps all week. I went to bed on Tuesday night giggling with Jesus and woke up Wednesday morning giggling with Jesus! I still get goose bumps thinking about the week!

Jesus gives full life. I think He is hungry to pour more of Himself out…

Here’s the 2nd week of camp…

I went to another teen camp (10-13 year olds) for 80 campers, this time for a great deal of kids who are not apart of a church. I said to God: “If you want to heal like you did and show how real you are to these campers, I’m game!” I read again of a few stories of Jesus loving the sick and healing them. I gave the invite for campers to raise their hands if they had any kind of pain. I taught kids to pray for other kids. And then… eyes were wide open. One boy healed of pain due to scoliosis. One girl had 6 years of neck pain – gone! One boy’s ulcer pain diminished and he received Christ! Crying and weeping everywhere. We had about 20 healings! Several campers received Jesus as their Lord and Saviour. We kept singing for Jesus for another hour after and we missed the evening game time! Campers were in awe once again of a loving God with healing power. One camper who had been complaining of chapel times was reading her Bible intently the next day.

Hallelujah!
Jesus was amazing!

Jesus, thank you for revealing how powerful and loving you are to teens this summer. I’m ready for more adventures with you…! 🙂

What Changed for Me? (Ashes to Beauty)

images-2Friends recently asked me what changed in my life this past year that brought on so much blessing, healing, and crazy adventures of delight and joy in Jesus.

I’ve been pondering this…

“God, why have you shown such grace and mercy?”

I have seen God do some INCREDIBLE things.

(This summer, I watched God bring on 70 physical healings (from torn ligaments, clenched jaws, scoliosis, injured necks, sprained ankles…) in teenagers I was sent to lead, along with hearts surrendered to a new full life in Jesus!)

…On top of this, I have the joy of leading people through inner healing sessions with Jesus and getting a front row seat to Him doing mighty things! Adults and teens in depression, anxiety, and addiction are experiencing deep healing by hearing God’s voice.

Every day I come home from work, I feel like I just saw Jesus perform another miracle.

How did this all begin to happen?

I look back…

Less than a year ago, I had the unfortunate job of confronting a man who’s behaviours negatively impacted multiple families including his own. Jesus helped me realize that his patterns of behaviour towards me and others were out of fear (which leads to manipulation and control, and in this case emotional and spiritual abuse). Yet, in order to break this cycle of fear, I chose to confront him in love.  Jesus strongly put it on my heart that I was to pray over the man for him to know that God’s love is greater than our fear. (Yes, this sounds humanly impossible to pray over a such a person. Only by the power of God can you do such a thing for someone who hurt others. I take no credit.)

The man wept, but only in sorrow. (Read: “5 Languages of Apology” by Dr Chapman to learn the difference between sorrow and repentance) I left in peace with a strong boundary, and I moved on… ‘dusting off my feet’.

I had no idea what would come next…

God is SO good.

For God will never give you the spirit of fear, but the Holy Spirit gives you mighty power, love, and sound mind. – 2 Timothy 1:7  

There are basically 2 motives in our lives for why we do what we do…

Fear.

Or love.

Since that day, my health (in all aspects) improved like crazy. LIKE CRAZY. Could it be that walking in boldness brought on more of God’s power? …and more of His love and sound mind (and authority).

It appears the act of confronting someone in love and peace, seemed to immediately cut off the word curses once spoken over me and released healing and power flowing out to others like a bottle uncorked. (Confronting an abuser took lots of guided help. Do not try this on your own.)

Would you like God’s power, love and self-control to become ‘uncorked’?

Questions for you:

Is there someone in your life who has hurt you?

Invite Holy Spirit to come… and then…

Ask Jesus: “How do you see this person? How do you feel about this person?”

What He will show you will blow your mind! God wants to loan us His perspective on people and situations in our lives.

Ask Jesus: “What are you calling me to do, if anything for this situation/person?”

What Jesus shows you can transform the place you are in.

Share it with trusted advisors to pray with you.

Whether you are called to confront someone, or simply pray a release over them…,

Jesus waits for us to be ready to step into His resting place in order to blow us away with what He wants to do next…

Like I said to the teens I was ministering to this summer… “Are you ready to get wrecked by God’s mind blowing love?!” 😀

Check this out…

Paul Prays for Love to Overflow

14 …I kneel humbly in awe before the Father of our Lord Jesus, the Messiah, 15 the perfect Father of every father and child in heaven and on the earth. 16 And I pray that he would unveil within you the unlimited riches of his glory and favor until supernatural strength floods your innermost being with his divine might and explosive power.

17 Then, by constantly using your faith, the life of Christ will be released deep inside you, and the resting place of his love will become the very source and root of your life.

18–19 Then you will be empowered to discover what every holy one experiences—the great magnitude of the astonishing love of Christ in all its dimensions. How deeply intimate and far-reaching is his love! How enduring and inclusive it is! Endless love beyond measurement that transcends our understanding—this extravagant love pours into you until you are filled to overflowing with the fullness of God!

20 Never doubt God’s mighty power to work in you and accomplish all this. He will achieve infinitely more than your greatest request, your most unbelievable dream, and exceed your wildest imagination! He will outdo them all, for his miraculous power constantly energizes you.

Ephesians 3:14-20  (TPT)

Jesus invites you to lay down your burdens at Jesus’ feet for Him to handle.

Then, walk forward in freedom and get ready to watch God do some mighty things!

(And if you have burdens that won’t go… and you need a life coach/spiritual director, and you know how to contact me, feel free to contact me directly. I would delight in walking with you to Jesus’ freedom gift for you too.)

Blessings! 🙂

Recommended Reading: 
“5 Languages of Apology” by Dr Chapman

What Makes a Healthy Church?

This was good… back to basics… (Go small to go big.)
What makes a healthy church fellowship of disciples? Below are the slides and videos…
Healthy Fellowships Video 1:
Practical – How to – Video 2:

Think Outside the Box to Reach the World

1-1I love that Randy Friesen wrote this article below… giving thought that in order to fulfill the Great Commission, we need to think differently…

I love the story he uses of Alex Honnold who broke a mountain climbing record (a climb that once took 47 days, he did in less than 4 hours)… a man on a mountain with less baggage and tools and more faith than ever before…

The Great Commission may seem like a huge mountain… and yes it is… and it requires new listening, new wine skins…

“New vision requires new wineskins… God is doing a new thing…. Wherever the Church is calling out to the Father in prayer, he is present with them and transforming lives. Citywide prayer for a citywide harvest is still God’s mission plan.”

“He (Jesus) has strategies to reach every nation, people group and city. He is calling us to radical surrender, to concerted prayer, and to risk-taking obedience. Rather than asking Jesus to fund our strategies and structures, will we listen for his voice and embrace his ways? Will we humble ourselves as leaders and think differently about strategic planning?”

Enjoy the full article…

http://mbmission.org/witness/summer-2018/think-differently 

And here’s Alex climbing the mountain without rope…

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How do you enter God’s presence?

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This question… “How do you enter God’s presence?”,  is so beautiful and has been asked of me many times lately. The answer from God’s Word is so refreshing…

1. Be still. Get quiet to allow Him to lead you.

Ps 46:10
“Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth.”

Ps 23
You lead me to streams
of peaceful water,
and you refresh my life…
You are with me…
Your kindness and love
will always be with me
each day of my life,
and I will live forever
in your house, Lord.

2. Enter His gates by giving thanks, giving praise to Him, singing for joy!

Psalm 100:1,2,4

Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth.
Worship the Lord with gladness;
come before him with joyful songs…
Enter his gates with thanksgiving
and his courts with praise;
give thanks to him and praise his name.

(Helpful hint: Try this… Get alone somewhere quiet. Start by listing 3 things you are thankful for. Say ‘thank you’ to God. “Thank you God for…”)

Do Leaders Need to Repent?

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Do leaders need to repent …or can they sweep things under the carpet?

When leaders fail to repent for idolatry and do not make heart change, not only do they cut off blessing in their own lives, but also in the lives of the people that they lead.

When a person walks in idolatry (bowing down to money, to other people out of fear, intimidation, lust, etc), they can expect the opposite of a blessing – a curse onto their children to the third and fourth generations. Idolatry in the lives of parents, grandparents, great, and great-great grandparents opens the door for this.

Sweeping sin under the carpet only makes your kids and grandkids pay more for it later. Is that really the inheritance you want to leave behind? The reason why your children, your flock are suffering, or walking away from you, cutting off all ties with you, etc…could be …you. And you could be a parent, a church leader, a business leader, a city leader…

And if you are calling your people to repent first, this is not love. This is control and manipulation. Leaders must repent first. (Otherwise, they are not leading. Leadership requires example, not hiding.)

Thankfully, repentance breaks this.

Jesus’ shed blood covers our sin when we repent.

God is a faithful God, who keeps his promise and is merciful to thousands of generations of those who love him and obey his commands.

Ask the Lord:

What is blocking me from receiving blessing for me and my children, my church, my business, my city etc? Whatever He brings to mind, repent of, and be set free! 🙂 This in turn will set your family line, your church, your city …free! 🙂 

Read: Exodus 20:5,6; Deuteronomy 7:9,10; Romans 8
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When They Don’t Change?

What do you do when a person in your life doesn’t change…? What if it’s your leadership, your employee, a friend, a client, a date, etc…?

Here’s a great refresh from a message I heard long ago and again from a book I read a year ago. Thankfully, there are things you can do before it comes down to walking away or swimming away from a sinking ship. Some boats are repairable still longing for the wind to fill their sails.

Brief overview with video link below…

3 Types of People (Dr Henry Cloud):

There are three types of people you encounter in your life, and when you deal with them, you can’t always take the same approach. Research reveals 3 basic categories and we all can behave in these at times in our growth. They are wise, foolish and evil.

Here they are:

  1. Wise people: Resource them. Give them more input, knowledge, training, teaching, and whatever you have, because they tend to use it. They’re good people to invest in. You don’t have to do much with these folks except have a good tone, be specific and listen well, and you’ll get great results. They are people of good character. 
  1. Foolish (defensive) people: Remember, more feedback usually does not help. So, why continue to do what doesn’t help? You’re wasting your breath trying to continually talk about a problem that the person is not owning. This is when you have to focus on consequences. If they do A, then it will result in B happening. Sometimes using consequences will get a turnaround, and other times they will go away, as they do not like to be held accountable. 
  1. Evil (destructive) people: With them, not only is there no talking, there is also usually no hope. Get serious about protecting yourself and others from their agenda, and take appropriate action. While group #1 needs input, and group #2 needs consequences, with the third group, you have to go into protective mode. They are out to harm, so make sure your strongest boundaries are intact. 

To learn more tools, I urge you to read Henry’s book, Necessary Endings

Enjoy this clip too!

Life After ‘Church’?

Since stepping away from traditional church and pastoral ministry, my journey has taken me on a sweet adventure. God has led my family away, not to find membership at another institutional church, though we had visited many and were warmly invited by many, but rather to take note of what God is up to… outside of the box.

He is doing a new thing…!

(Resource below…)

God is amazing.

We are enjoying a rich time. My family and I are involved in a growing disciple-making movement it appears. I’ve got 4 discipleship groups right now I’m leading or co-leading. We are also enjoying street ministry (simply offering to pray for people) and feeding the homeless. We have seen people come to Christ and getting physically healed of various illnesses. My favourite was an older man healed of serious back pain in Jesus’ name. The look on his face! Or the conversation I had about Jesus’ view of women (using the story of the Samaritan woman at the well) after I was asked about being a female pastor. 😀

(Just had a thought… Being a woman sharing hope on the street is somehow a more acceptable thing in some circles than being a woman sharing hope on a stage behind a pulpit. Strange…? Yet, I’m having more fun on the street these days!)

For us, it has been life on life led by Holy Spirit. No pressure, no rush… I just wake up in the morning, ask God what He has planned, linger with Him in the Word and in prayer, and then go. (I work on the side as a Life Coach and Spiritual Director and have recently been invited to partner with another ministry.)

There are eleven people I only met this year just walking my dog, or going to a coffee shop, or brought to meet me with a friend. God is on the move, on the street, and in our homes. The running joke at home is that I take forever to get a few groceries. I keep having some incredible conversations with people. 😀

Below is another resource that helped me digest, reflect, and embrace this new chapter for ourselves of intentionally being the living church (which takes less energy then we were used to in the past. Although, when I look at the list above of what we are doing, it’s much bigger somehow! That’s totally God. Not us!)

We love the Church! And God uses institutional churches. But, if you’re struggling with confusion within an institutional church, church politics, meetings and meetings and a lack of fruit, and you’ve wandered from institutional church to institutional church, but you love Jesus perhaps more than ever, this help may be like a breath of fresh air…!

LAC-ads

Life After Church (Audio Download)
We are in one of the most dramatic reorganizations of the structure of THE Church ever in human history. That is because the King is on the move and there is a dramatic next chapter coming. This album is one perspective from researcher Arthur Burk on where the King is going and how we can live this transition season for fullest effect. You ARE in a transition. The question is whether you will transition well and be part of the new move of God, or will be caught short…?  ***Sneak peek:

5 basic reasons people leave the church:

  1. Abusive authority.
  2. Community is found outside church. Church then became just a ritual.
  3. Leadership was hired on credentials rather than anointing and gifting.
  4. Money going to consumer comforts and an old building rather than outreach. 
  5. No clue why you left?? You just did and don’t know why.

God is raising up a new army. We are seeing the merging of the Fathering Movement and Church in the Marketplace coming together, merging into one stream. As we head into multiple ticking time bombs, God is getting ready for it.

In the light of church history, we are getting ready for something really big.

THERE HAS NEVER BEEN A MOBILIZATION OF THIS MAGNITUDE IN THE BODY OF CHRIST EVER IN CHURCH HISTORY.

The Life ‘After Church’ signs are:

·         Decentralization- there is no human leader.

·         Design based, as each one of us dominates a small niche in our area of expertise.

·         People have learned to hear God directly for themselves (not relying on a pastor).

·         You don’t need structures, you can move NIMBLY, as Holy Spirit leads.

We are privileged to be in this season, to be a part of something so big it will rewrite human and church history. Each of us have been designed for this season, for such a time as this…  Learn more…

Unlearn in Order to Learn how to Disciple?

13 million people in 12 years through a disciple making movement?!!! (A few people in the Word started it all.)

This morning, I got to group Skype with a missionary on the other side of the world and hear how fast the Gospel is spreading. He had to unlearn things in order to learn how to truly make disciples.

I loved that he said some of his best leaders are women! 😀

What is a disciple making movement? Here’s one way to explain… 🙂