29 Jan 2014 by Mindy Oon CM-
Planetshakers Awakening 2014 was held on the 23 to 25 January at Damansara Utama Methodist Church’s Dream Centre. The sanctuary was filled with hearts hungry to hear the Word of God, and the crowd was led into worship by the Planetshakers band.
Pr Neil Smith spoke for the first pastors’/leaders’ session on leaders making disciples and having to be confident in their call. Our mandate is to make disciples, and not to build the church (Matthew 28:18-20 And Jesus and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of age.”). This doesn’t mean that we do not care about church growth, but we should commit it into God’s hands. To make disciples, firstly, we need to be confident in our call. We need to know what God has put uniquely on our lives. This is because from the confidence we have in our call comes authority. Thus we need to rise in confidence if we are to function in what God wants us to do.
Many of us have lost confidence in our call, and we even struggle with who we are in Christ. We have constant negative thoughts that tell us we are worthless, that others are better, that we are useless. These thoughts will cause us to lose confidence and we need to counter these thoughts with positive thoughts. We need to recognize and be confident of who we are in Christ.
Secondly, we need to lead by example. A lot of leaders live by the title they are given. Jesus showed his disciples what to do and how to do by healing the sick, casting out demons and even through the way he lived his life. As leaders, we need to be current, as well as confident. Remember that Jesus said that we will be able to do all that he did, and more. It will be hard to make disciples if we do not lead by example.
Thirdly, to make disciples, we need to call them out. Instead of waiting for people to follow us, we need to call them to follow, just as how Jesus called the disciples to follow him (Matthew 4:18-22)
When we make disciples, there will also be test and trials that we will have to go through. But no matter what we have gone through or what we are going through, understand that God is for you, and that the test may be a preparation for the next level that God has prepared for you. We need to remember to do things God’s way, and when we do so, God will come through for us.
There will always be a test of faith and trust. Sometimes, we get caught up in building the church. However, we need to realize that the church is a vehicle that brings us to God. We can become comfortable in the vehicle, for example, we resist change because ‘this is the way we do things here’. But our faith should be put in God, not in the vehicle. Our trust and faith needs to be in God, and we need to make sure that we don’t put God aside and depend on our own ability.
There will also be the test of family and friendship. Jesus himself spoke and said “Follow me, and let the dead bury their own dead” (Matthew 8:18-22). While it may seem like a very harsh thing to say, this just means that we need to put God first in our lives, and that our relationship with him should be a priority. Sometimes we become very secure in our relationships, and close relationships we have may be tested. When this happens we need to realize that God needs to be in the center of every relationship we have.
As we make disciples, God’s kingdom will grow. Today, if you have lost confidence in the call that God has given you, ask the Lord to refresh and renew you. Things might have happened, and you may have gone through discouragement and tough times, but don’t live with the sense of failure. Remember that you are more than a conqueror, and step into the new things that God has for you!
For those who missed this year’s conference, Planetshakers will be doing the ‘Nights of Fire’ tour this August. Also, do look out for news on the 2015 Awakening conference.