God is Full of Surprises!
February 1, 2017
It never ceases to amaze me how much God blesses us. This last month I attended our citywide prayer breakfast here in Bakersfield. This is an event that has been held for the last 37 years. This year’s event was attended by 1,100 people from a variety of backgrounds. The Mayor, Police Chief, Fire Chief, leaders from the California Highway Patrol our city and state political offices, Pastors, Educators, business leaders as well as many that understand and believe in the power of prayer. I believe this is one of the reasons God pours out such blessing on Bakersfield.
Early this month I was invited to speak to the Women’s Aglow group in Arroyo Grande. This organization has been around many years. Their purpose is to pray for our political leaders, pastors, churches and anything else that God lays before them. Many of these women who have been prayer warriors for years pray with fervency and expectancy. It’s exciting to know there are prayer warriors around that have the faith of these women.
Some of you are aware of my passion for training and mentoring young men. For those of you who are not, let me give you a picture of the importance this plays in my life. In the late 1980’s while at a Vineyard Conference in Anaheim, California I was given a prophetic word by a man I trust that I would be leading an army of young warrior’s into battle and that we would be involved in a life and death battle to take back what Satan has stolen. This warfare will help bring in the reign of the Kingdom of God. At the time this sounded pretty far out there for me so I put it on the back burner. Over the last 17 years I have at times spiritually fathered and mentored three or four young men that I’ve watched grow into mighty warriors for God. Also in the ensuing years the original prophecy was confirmed by other prophetic words from people who knew nothing of the earlier prophetic word.
In 2011 I felt strongly that God was leading me to take this fathering/mentoring of one or two individuals at a time to a new level. I began to meet at my home on Saturday mornings with a couple of guys for coffee to see where it would go. They started inviting their friends who then invited their friends until I ended up with a houseful of young men passionate for the things of God. They come from a variety of churches here in Bakersfield of both the Catholic and Protestant traditions. Their backgrounds vary from the conservative liturgical tradition to the charismatic Pentecostal. Some are new believers while others were raised in the church. They are not interested in “playing church” or “being religious.” They are passionate in wanting to know how to integrate this walk of faith into their daily lives, how to walk in holiness and purity, and how to become warriors equipped to witness with their lives what it means to be a Christ-like-One. Their passion for relationship with God is infectious. It challenges me to recognize that if I am going to lead these young men into deeper intimacy with the Father I have to consistently step up my personal commitment.
Thank you for your consistent prayers and faithful support over the many years we have been doing this ministry.