Looking toward the beginning of the 6th month, pondering the rest of 2016. . .
At the beginning of the year, the Lord gave us the word “REFRESH” for 2016. He began speaking this beginning in December as I looked into what the ION Prayer Focus might be going into the new year for January.
Continuing in the message of “wait” was my answer. For the past 8 years I had been in the habit of writing prayer focus guides for ION. Originally weekly, then twice monthly and in the last few years it has been a monthly prayer focus guide. That all was been put in “wait” mode as we entered into 2016. God has been working on me as to what is really needed. Is it my habit, or is it His guiding?!?
Let me give you some background. For over the past two years, our core prayer team has been walking out James 1:2-8
James 1:2-8 The Christian can even welcome trouble (J.B. Phillips) When all kinds of trials and temptations crowd into your lives my brothers, don’t resent them as intruders, but welcome them as friends! Realize that they come to test your faith and to produce in you the quality of endurance. But let the process go on until that endurance is fully developed, and you will find you have become men of mature character with the right sort of independence. And if, in the process, any of you does not know how to meet any particular problem he has only to ask God—who gives generously to all men without making them feel foolish or guilty—and he may be quite sure that the necessary wisdom will be given him. But he must ask in sincere faith without secret doubts as to whether he really wants God’s help or not. The man who trusts God, but with inward reservations, is like a wave of the sea, carried forward by the wind one moment and driven back the next. That sort of man cannot hope to receive anything from God, and the life of a man of divided loyalty will reveal instability at every turn.
James 1:2-8 (VOICE) Don’t run from tests and hardships, brothers and sisters. As difficult as they are, you will ultimately find joy in them; if you embrace them, your faith will blossom under pressure and teach you true patience as you endure. And true patience brought on by endurance will equip you to complete the long journey and cross the finish line—mature, complete, and wanting nothing. If you don’t have all the wisdom needed for this journey, then all you have to do is ask God for it; and God will grant all that you need. He gives lavishly and never scolds you for asking.
Wisdom, as James understands it, is the ability to live life well and make good decisions. Wisdom doesn’t come from old age or hard knocks. Wisdom begins with knowing and depending absolutely on God, who is never stingy when it comes to wisdom for those who seek it. He supplies all the wisdom we need when we ask. But when we try to go it alone—without God—trouble is around the corner.
The key is that your request be anchored by your single-minded commitment to God. Those who depend only on their own judgment are like those lost on the seas, carried away by any wave or picked up by any wind. Those adrift on their own wisdom shouldn’t assume the Lord will rescue them or bring them anything. The splinter of divided loyalty shatters your compass and leaves you dizzy and confused.
We will be the first to confess, this has not been an easy time for any of us. But we will also be the ones to say God has been right in the middle of all this with us! And we are stronger for these days. In the midst of all of the trials, tests and hardships a new level of TRUSTING GOD, comes in the chaos.
God is in the chaos. . .
It is He who can give us the correct perspective in the middle of the storm, but we must look to Him (and Him alone). Have you been in the midst of some trials? What if it is God working on your maturity or the maturity of those around you. This is a body issue, the whole body of Christ is in the midst of understanding their true identity and what must happen to REFRESH. A recalibration is needed. A recalibration is happening!
Understanding our true identity in sonship. . .
1 John 5:20 – And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and we are in him that is true, [even] in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life.
Luke 1:35 – And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.
John 3:16 – For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
Romans 8:10-12 – In bringing many sons and daughters to glory, it was fitting that God, for whom and through whom everything exists, should make the pioneer of their salvation perfect through what he suffered. Both the one who makes people holy and those who are made holy are of the same family. So Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers and sisters. He says, “I will declare your name to my brothers and sisters; in the assembly I will sing your praises.”
Romans 8:16 – The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God
Remember that our primary purpose in being a son of God is to bring God glory. Our proper identity and correct alignment is in who God calls us. -Sons of God, children of His!
Sons of God, hear the Father’s voice, Sons of God speak what the Father tells them to speak, Sons of God do what the Father tells them to do. Hearing Him is critical. Being of Him and people of prayer is key for this season. We have heard His voice and are in a new place of hearing Him. Hearing Him call us and others to pray and to lead others to pray into the future for those who still wait to hear God’s name and to have an opportunity to follow His Son. Only through the work of the Holy Spirit will that happen. So this week after Pentecost, we continue to cry out. . .
Habakkuk 2:1-3 (WEB) – I will stand at my watch, and set myself on the ramparts, and will look out to see what he will say to me, and what I will answer concerning my complaint. Yahweh answered me, “Write the vision, and make it plain on tablets, that he who runs may read it. For the vision is yet for the appointed time, and it hurries toward the end, and won’t prove false. Though it takes time, wait for it; because it will surely come. It won’t delay.
Habakkuk 2:14 (WEB) – For the earth will be filled with the knowledge of Yahweh’s glory, as the waters cover the sea.
Habakkuk 3:1-2 (WEB) [God Racing on the Crest of the Waves] A prayer of the prophet Habakkuk, with orchestra: God, I’ve heard what our ancestors say about you, and I’m stopped in my tracks, down on my knees. Do among us what you did among them. Work among us as you worked among them. And as you bring judgment, as you surely must, remember mercy.
As we round the corner to the coming of the first of June and the beginning of the second half of the year, it is becoming more clear! God is in the quieting of us down so to speak.
When we look back to where we were a year ago this week (at the last week of our 50 days of intentional listening prayer initiative) we see God is answering our prayers. He has shifted us in many ways, yet the vision remains the same. Read more about the vion of ION here: https://orality.net/about/#vision
Coming into focus are some spectacular stories of what God He is doing out in His Harvest field. We are delighted at the opportunity to join Him in His activity.
Worker’s reply after you prayed for the speed of deer rather than turtle speed on May 18th for the completion of the final recordings of a StoryTogether project…: “Answered prayers yesterday! We are making big strides. One story teller went from stuttering to confidence in the first story!” Please continue claiming Psalm 18:33 as you pray for these recordings and the peoples on a different religious ‘course’ who will now have an opportunity to hear the Good News in their heart languages.
Scripture App for the Amis: Taiwan
A pilot project was launched recently by Wycliffe Taiwan among the Amis community, one of the largest language groups in the country. The project aims to provide the Amis people an app so they can access Scriptures easily in text and audio forms. Once the Amis project is completed, similar projects will be started in other people groups. Thank God for Taiwan Bible Society and the Amis churches who are the key partners in this project. Pray also for the 16 language communities in Taiwan. Pray that they would all have access to God’s Word and know Him as the Author of hope, love and life.
Using their language in church: Russian Federation
Over the past three summers a translation team has worked with local believers from a small people group in Siberia to craft a set of 30 oral Bible stories. Praise God that the believers who helped the team enjoyed the work so much they practiced translating verses from the Bible while the team was away. They told them, “You have helped to redeem our language for the church. Now we talk, pray and sing in church all the time in our mother tongue!”
American Bible Society Celebration of 200 years. They are into their 3rd Century of joining God in the Bible cause in America and throughout the World. Habakkuk 2:14
Sharing a blog post from the American Bible Society:
Prayers That Give Me Peace in Times of Chaos: When the busyness of life drags you down, you can turn to God for comfort
Thinking back to the prayer room when Morgan Jackson came into our ION Prayer Room and shared what they would be doing in a goal of every heart language having the New Testament in Audio format available. WOW! Look at what God has been doing. So very grateful for the opportunities to come alongside our ION Partner groups in prayer.
PRAISE GOD for this movement of putting the Scriptures into every heart language. Now lets continue to come alongside the work of groups like Faith Comes By Hearing and ask for continued favor.
Let’s pray big and set our hearts together to pray for the whole Bible in every language. We have seen God do remarkable things over this past 10 years as the ION Prayer Team. You are invited to join in asking. . .