Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Grapes to Give

God has grapes to give. He had luscious grapes to give to Joshua and Caleb’s generation – grapes that symbolized the Land of Promise. In order to take that great land of blessing, the people would need lots of faith, courage, and hard work!

So, as we believe the Lord is moving us to starting a church – a Spring where people will grow close to the Lord – so the Lord has grapes to give us. Grapes that symbolize the Lord’s presence. Grapes that stand for spiritual transformation. Grapes that will be other people that will come to know the Lord through this ministry. Grapes to give. In order to taste those grapes, we too will need lots of faith, courage, and hard work.

We are in a process of praying, planning, and preparing in order that we might possess. Those are the 5 P’s of starting a church!

Process – Rome wasn’t built in a day, and the Promised Land wasn’t conquered overnight. It takes time. Patience. Love. Grace. Strength and endurance. We have embarked upon a process that will build step by step. Sometimes we will take two steps forward and one step back. But together we will move forward in the Lord. And we will continue in this process.

Praying – Prayer marks the lifeblood of the early church. Again and again in Scripture you read, “and they prayed.” Prayer puts us before God in humility, and it invites God to guide us. Prayer-saturated people ask God for his revelation, his provision, his wisdom, and his power. The main reason we began with Experiencing God was to put us in a position of prayer.

Planning – As the Israelites got ready to take the land, God led them in a plan. As they entered the land and took city after city, at every juncture they needed to pray – seek the Lord – and allow Him to show them the next plan. So, as we have been and will continue to pray, the Lord will guide us in making plans for this church. So we plan.

Preparing – We are looking ahead to the future. As the Jews stood on the Sinai side of the Jordan, they didn’t have the grapes yet. They were preparing. So, Lord willing, we are preparing for the future. We are preparing for at least three things: 1) a church that will be a home for the Lord’s presence to dwell and work, 2) a church where our own lives and the lives of our family and friends will be blessed and transformed, and 3) a church where other people we don’t even know – here and around the world – will be touched and transformed with the gospel of Jesus Christ. For that we prepare.

Possessing – Joshua rallied the people, “Get ready. You will cross the Jordan here to go in and take possession of the land the Lord your God is giving you for your own (Joshua 1:11). All of the process, praying, planning, and preparing is for the ultimate purpose of possessing! There are grapes to give, and there are lands of grapes to possess. Together, let’s take the land! We want to be possessors!

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