How to keep your fire burning – Sarah Collins
My prayer in this season is this, “Father I’m hungry for you, make me hungrier still.” I want to burn with a passion to know Him as my friend and to see His Kingdom fires extend across the earth!
In a world that keeps on turning it can be very easy to allow the busyness of life to captivate your attention. Recently I’ve had a week working overtime, and I very quickly became self-reliant, tired and drained of energy. I forgot to draw strength from my Father.
Even in these seasons of chaos I believe we can have an intimate friendship with Jesus that makes us hungry for more of Him, gives us fresh strength and enables us to experience the fullness of life that He promises. When we fuel our hearts desire for more of Jesus we will be activated in courage and freedom to see the Kingdom of God break out in our towns and make disciples who make disciples.
“But how can we stay on fire for Him?” I hear you ask! Here are three top tips:
Schedule time for encounter
Personal encounter with Jesus, dwelling in His presence, experiencing His nature in the secret place, is where transformation truly takes place.
I have to intentionally book in time in my diary to ensure I regularly have time to do this. I shut the door to my bedroom, turn the music up and sing to Him.
One of the words used for praise in the Bible is the Hebrew word “Tehilla” which means to sing a spontaneous, unwritten song to the Lord. This is my favourite way to express my love and adoration for Jesus.
As we express our adoration to Him, He loves to come and reveal more of Himself to us. It’s in this place we develop intimacy with God and are transformed into His likeness.
Corrie Ten Boom famously said: “Don’t pray when you feel like it. Have an appointment with the Lord and keep it. A man is powerful on his knees.”
The Bible is an encounter waiting to happen
It’s easy to underestimate the power of the written word of God. To overlook it as an opportunity to grow in passion for Jesus. For so long I read the Bible out of duty and legalism. More recently I’ve learned that the Bible is an encounter waiting to happen. If you read it in partnership with the Holy Spirit, revelation and presence are waiting for you.
I’m new on this journey of encountering Jesus through His word but I’m trusting in the Scripture that says “Abide in me, and I in you” John 15:4. When we read the Word we are choosing to abide in Jesus, and when we do that, in return He will come and make Himself known in our hearts. What an exciting invitation!
Be filled with wonder
To provoke our hunger in Jesus I think it’s so important to be filled with wonder and be in awe of what He is doing around us. I love to read stories of missionaries, miracles and outrageous courage that lead to encounters as they are so inspiring. I want to feed myself on Kingdom stories to excite my heart to see the same thing happen in my own town, in my workplace and in my home.
I recently heard a story of a lady who had incredible pain in her back, so much so that she had a battery implanted in her that would trick her brain into thinking she had no pain, yet even that failed to stop the pain. Jesus miraculously healed her in a moment and she’s now pain free! It’s stories like these that cause me to wonder at God’s Goodness and be overwhelmed with thankfulness at His kindness and faithfulness. It’s these stories that fuel my hunger for more of Jesus!
I know that if we intentionally cultivate these three lifestyle habits that we can keep going with a burning passion for Jesus’ name to be made famous on the whole earth. We will live with a mindset of being world changers and hunger to see the miraculous today.
What a beautiful friendship!
Suggested reading to cultivate your wonder
Face to Face with Jesus by Samaa Habib
Outrageous Courage by Tracy Evans
At one of our evenings this year we had a panel where we discussed a variety of things on our heart as a team. We mainly ended up talking about vision, conflict and the importance of team.
In a nutshell:
- Working as a team
We need to learn to run with our own gifts rather than trying to borrow someone else’s gift or job. As we walk into freedom and our identity, we see these gifts flourish, and it allows us to build team more effectively.
We also need to recognise the seasons we’re in as a team. We are called to preach the Word in season and out of season. (2 Tim 4:2) Often, an individual in the team will feel not as much on fire as someone else. That’s where team is powerful. Team enables you to keep moving forward without being dependent on one person. When you’re out of season, there is usually someone else in season. This helps you pull each other up and champion each other, as well as building trust and letting go of control.
- To build a team, working through conflict is critical
Wendy talks about how she has learned to focus on the person rather than just the issue. A useful tool can be to ask the question, “Can you help me to understand what was going on when…”. This shows how self aware the person is, but also allows you to build empathy towards them, too.
At King’s Arms, we sat, “it’s not “if you get offended, it’s how you deal with when you get offended”. We all make mistakes and need to talk in person. Confrontation is not about who’s right, it’s about understanding and building a deeper relationship than before. We recognise when God is moving in a person, rather than stumbling over who they are not.
- Learning to manage a vision in team
It can be very helpful to ask the questions: “What are we doing this for? What is God saying?”. This will keep us on track for what God is saying and keeps us God focused rather than managing a ministry. As a team, we don’t always agree on everything but we have bought into a central vision rather than bringing our own agenda. We each have our areas and are released in that, but we also involve the core team in decisions. We change and adapt as we go to keep us all on the same page.
Quotes from this video
Philbe: “Because we are for one another, we want to pull the best out of each other. We can be vulnerable and be ourselves.”
Rah: “It’s better to give stuff away for other people to do, rather than do it all myself. When you do something in team, you get the fullest expression of everybody’s gifts. You can’t see people flourish if you keep it all to yourself.”
Marco: “I really value the challenge. If you’re both honest and also say the good things I can trust you. If you only say nice things and never say what you really thing, I start to wonder if it’s fake.”