No, I’m not in 30 degree Atlanta. Tonight I am in 65 degree Homestead FL. I’m staying with some of my dear friends Russell and Kerry as we prepare for a day of Sozo’s tomorrow and Saturday. We are here by the invitation of Oasis Church to sozo their leadership and others and them to talk about the Sozo ministry and basically give them more of on idea of what it can be like in their church. We had a meeting with their team tonight, basically to introduce ourselves and field questions. On Sat night we will have a general meeting with more people from the church and other churches. We are scheduled for three sozo’s tomorrow and three on Saturday, so we should be pretty busy. I am so close to Jennifer’s place, but I will probably be too busy to get to see her. So, I really won’t get an opportunity to enjoy the sun, but at least it is warm and not icy cold. A low of 55 is much better than a low of 11.
Here is a question we were talking about tonight among ourselves. How is it that so many leaders’ say they want revival, but when it comes time to step out and do something different to stir it up, they pull back? I’ve seen it time and time again. The Vineyard Movement is a classic example. John Wimber said that the next move of God will cost you everything you have to date; It will cost you your life. And yet, even the Vineyard in the late 90’s got so caught up in what people were saying about them and how they needed to protect their reputation that they asked the church where a new move of God started and was being nurtured to leave the Vineyard. When Toronto Airport Vineyard left, the Vineyard as a movement began to wane. But they are not alone, it has happened before, and it will happen again. Leaders get so comfortable that they are afraid to rock the boat. They don’t want to upset what is going on now. So the good continues, and we miss the best.
This is played out weekly in church after church, especially in the US. Churches say that they honor the Holy Spirit but when He starts to move in a way that they are not familiar, the cut Him off. I’ve seen it in churches past. I know that if you search your memory, you have seen it too. So what can we as leaders do to protect ourselves from falling into this trap? First, we have to believe that God is good. No matter how weird the manifestation looks, He wouldn’t do anything to cause us to move farther away from Him. Second, and this is harder, we have to develop a culture of risk and freedom. Before we can operate in a culture of freedom, we must, as leaders, be willing to risk losing it all. We must be willing to risk someone walking away because of what Holy Spirit does. We must be willing to risk even being wrong and missing it when the noise starts back again.
So, even as I go do sozos tomorrow I want to be willing to risk as do what He says no matter what the cost. Am I willing? Yes, I am. Will I? I think do, but I will have to make sure. So, tomorrow we go advancing the Kingdom in Homestead, one thing I want. That is to walk in risk so others will be able to walk in freedom.