So much has been happening so rapidly, that it is hard to know where to start. I have been failing to report as diligently as I should be doing. The sheer volume of spiritual understanding the Lord has been putting before me to process is staggering. There are insufficient words for the realization that the love of Jesus passes all understanding. I was arrogant to think that I knew what this was, and inside my being I have been changed. Almost all of the Christian population has been greatly deceived. If we do not operate with the fruit of the Spirit in all things, we are falling short. Even to the point of grieving or quenching the Spirit. Galatians 5:19-26 NKJV; Read these verses very carefully and have them hidden in your heart. I will be expanding much more on this in a later report. God has so much to reveal to those who want to go deeper. These insights are available to everyone, but few are willing to give complete obedience and surrender to His Lordship.
Pastor Jared in Kenya has had two family members die in the same week. The forces of evil have been calling and emailing me constantly. My contact information has been passed around or sold to the highest bidder, though to whom I am not sure. Even the term “bombarded” falls short to describe what has been happening. As the attacks against us continue to ramp up, so does my faith. God will be having a showdown against evil when we return. Never in my life has the importance of total obedience been so important. I know that I will be walking into the enemy’s camp. I know that we will be outnumbered significantly. There have been many threats of bodily harm on people that are associated with Echo. Our personal outcome is not important, only that Jesus Christ will be magnified and glorified in whatever happens. Yahweh is preparing us for something that we cannot begin to fathom.
A huge part of this is to understand what is implied by unconditional love for one another. As a body of believers, we are instructed not to have division or walk away from one another, no matter what. More on that later. This is something that has been demonstrated in Africa in ways that I have never observed in the U.S. Through the power of the Holy Spirit, they are made strong in Yahweh. That is probably one of the primary contributors, why God is moving so quickly over there. I will no longer speculate on the number of countries that Echo will enter in the first year because I am sure I would be wrong. When I refer to enter into, that means having some sort of operating pastor training, or Bible distribution, or both.
I take no responsibility for this whatsoever, as it has amazingly happened for the glory of Jesus Christ. This plan that God has put into play has been in progress for years. He continues to surround me with people that are far more skilled than I. The old pride-filled arrogant self would have never tolerated that. Now I rejoice as much better suited people are brought into the mix to help us on the commission. When we met Martin, we knew that God had brought a supernatural meeting into existence for a specific purpose. As hard as it was to believe, I can remember uttering the words to my wife that Martin would have a tremendous role in the leadership of Echo. This was the evening of the first night that we had met. God had aligned both of our families’ paths to intercept with one another in a 40 second window of time.
As I mentioned in the last report, Martin has realized the role that God has set out for him. My words spoken to him only confirmed what he was sensing in his spirit. I praise Jesus and I am rejoicing in my spirit for someone to replace me who will do a far better job than I have done. Martin is astounded by the rate of expansion that the Lord is working. In some of the places we are going, we cannot even talk about Jesus because it is so dangerous for Christians. Any pictures, names of villages, or mentions of locations could lead to certain death in some of these situations. Martin has spent five years in Birunda and has far more experience in this environment than I have. Most Christian organizations have decimated the social fabric of African countries by giving money for fake pictures of people holding Bibles. In many cases, they had never even traveled to investigate the situations themselves.
I have been greatly deceived and I welcome the expertise that Martin brings. When our hearts are completely surrendered and fully open to the Holy Spirit, we can walk in strength and might. This does not guarantee protection of our lives, but that our lives will be used to glorify Jesus. This is the most glorious assignment of all. We have been going through significant lessons concerning loving one another. I am referring to our small U.S.-based Echo team. The ability to love unconditionally as Jesus loves seems to be much easier for those in Echo Africa. Maybe that is why I so much enjoy being with all of them and Yahweh was showing me how to be better at loving others.
Above Pictured: Satellite Night View of Africa
My wife and I cried out to God on our last flight back from Africa. We pleaded that He would give us life in America that would be as useful as that in Africa. Praise Jesus that He has answered that prayer in a magnificent way. We have never been so involved in the lives of the people in our small group and our community. God is making supernatural connections with people in this group and accelerating our learning far beyond what it ever has been. Our standard practice is sharing words of confirmation and insight with various people. The Lord impressed upon me that we are learning too slowly. He is connecting more of us together so that we can learn more quickly. It is a magnificent experience when Yeshua begins to reveal Himself to us through His amazing love for others.
Only when we crucify our flesh, and become dead to all the petty emotions that make us stumble, then the secret places will be revealed. Foolishness of humanity keeps us from knowing Yeshua the way He wants us to know Him. I have fallen into this trap countless times, which has always delayed what Jesus wanted to show me. The dreamlike state that I have been experiencing is continuing to expand, now lasting for several days at a time. When we set aside all things of this world, they fade into background noise. As we become Love, we grow in ability to discern a person’s heart. This is not the love that this world prescribes to-it is nothing like that. Sadly, many people will never experience the Love that Jesus is. Praise Yahweh for those who do, because it changes their understanding of reality.
The times of testing that we have been going through in our small group has been wonderful. We had been nearly split apart again by the tactics of the enemy, but are now united with one accord far stronger than ever. God-given giftedness existed right before my eyes and I did not identify it as quickly as I should have. Amongst the multitude of wonderful things about God, this truth surfaces often for me. When we walk a surrendered, obedient life accompanied with a great deal of faith, Jesus is always very near. The many mistakes that I have caused are quickly corrected in glorious fashion by the Master. God seems to give me just what I need in the nick of time to handle the situation His way. He oftentimes teaches me a valuable lesson only a few days or a few weeks before that lesson is tested. If I can implement the training successfully, He quickly moves on to the next lesson.
For several months now, I have been put in situations where love did not prevail but I was instructed to be obedient to Love in my actions. I would marvel at how Jesus would handle the situation, because it certainly was not me. I could not have handled situations like that. As the training continues on, it becomes easier and easier to be in stressful situations with peace and love reigning supreme in my being. There is only one explanation for this: Jesus Christ! The most recent situations ring true for the Power of Love. If I were to go back a few weeks or so, I do not believe I had been equipped yet to love the way Jesus wanted me to love.
The ability to deal with tough situations and still demonstrate love is almost nonexistent. People will always take the easy way out if they feel the least bit uncomfortable about a situation. Jesus was very clear about this. John 17;20-23,NKJV; I do not pray for these alone, but also for those who will believe in me through their word; that they all may be one, as you, father, are in me, and I in you; that they also may be one in us, that the world may believe that you sent me. And the glory which you gave me I have given them, that they may be one just as we are one: I in them, you and me; they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that you have sent me, and have loved them as you have loved me. Unfortunately the world we live in today rarely takes this verse seriously.
In America, we are so self-centered, self-absorbed, and easily offended that we cannot even begin to grasp the meaning of putting others before ourselves. In Africa, I see the opposite demonstrated all the time with a huge smile on their faces- how refreshing. Many times, I have pondered the importance of Echo being in America. The reality is that the poorest of the poor in these African countries have much to teach us. Most of my life, I have not demonstrated the love of Jesus. My own selfish ways have blinded me to the existence of that. Now that I have tasted His goodness and love, there is no other place I want to be. God has revealed some incredible things about emotional control, body language control, and exhibiting joy. These revelations have caused a transformation quite unexpectedly. Much of this contributes to the dreamlike state that I have been experiencing. More changes are coming, and I can hardly wait to keep experiencing God’s power!