In January this year (2012) Peg and I embarked on a 30 day fast at the direction of the Lord. The majority of the motivation behind this fast was desperation. For the previous 2 ½ years, we have been through the most trying season of our lives both personally and with the church. The very core of who we are personally and as a church was challenged and attacked from within. We needed the Father desperately and needed a restoration of our purpose and identity. Peg extended her fast 1 week longer than mine. It was Saturday evening February 11th and we were preparing for service the next morning. I had gone to bed early and Peg was still up, crying out to God. She desperately asked God for a fresh outpouring for us personally, for our family and for our church. The Lord manifested Himself in a tangible way that evening and filled her with His presence.
The next morning prior to service, I was reviewing my message and soaking in the Lord’s presence. I began to journal and I asked the Lord what He wanted me to do in service that morning. Here is His response:
I want you to impart my Spirit to my people this morning. I want a direct, clear call for impartation. I have come that they may have life and I am here this morning among you to give you an abundance of my Spirit. To those willing to receive and take risk this morning will see and understand what I mean. I want this day to be a turning point. Follow My voice and My heart today and you will see a dramatic increase in the activity and power of the Spirit in your midst.
I became overwhelmed by the presence of God, but expressed my fears to step out in this way. His response to me:
It is okay, my son…You will feel my Spirit’s presence like you are feeling it right now. For even this day is a new beginning for you. I am refreshing you this morning with my Spirit. You have given me your heart and I am giving you a newness in my Spirit. You will know the time this morning to step out. It will be clear to you. Even as you are challenging my people this morning to take risk, I am asking you to risk. You are entering a season of the demonstration of the Spirit’s power. You are ready. It’s time. Do not be afraid. Trust.
Our service began that morning, and I never had the opportunity to preach. During worship, the joy of the Lord fell on the congregation. Dancing, shouting, joyful praise like we have not experienced in a long time. After a long time of worship we just began to lay hands on people and God poured out His Spirit with power!
New Life Church has not been the same since that Sunday. We continue to experience His joy and His overwhelming presence every time we gather. The main fruit of this season is growth among young people. They are on fire for God and each Sunday bring friends to service. We are seeing young people being restored to the Kingdom of God. They have begun to meet for 2 1/2 hours after morning service for more worship, prayer, and seeking God’s face! Father God is ministering to them and restoring their lives and they have become a force for the Kingdom!
Here are just a couple of testimonies:
I was experiencing a low unlike any I’ve felt since my early 20's. I'd fallen away from my faith as a result of non-stop financial, marital, health, & work issues; plus two car accidents– that allowed me no recovery time. Problems began in November & DID NOT CEASE. I sat in my room staring at the wall, silently letting tears pour. I was so angry with God I’d given up talking to Him. I was like this for more than two months. I finally got myself back to church but I was numb and had NO idea how God was going to fix the mess. Then in a miracle of only the Jesus-kind, someone put their arm around me at church when I had no words to say and no words to pray. The healing began. Not only did the Lord reveal Himself and make Himself tangible for the first time, He took the imbalance of pain and balanced me out. Then He elevated me to a JOY I'd never had. A level of JOY that has ministered to my friends, my family and now my husband, which PROVES His plans for us are good!!! As He allowed me to fall to my emotional rock bottom, He used it to show me what a TRUE walk with Him is like. Now I know how to seek Him through all circumstances, and because of this no difficulty can conquer me. For I serve the Living God who reigns over my heart and life. My depth of relationship with Him is undeniable and His love embraces me, unlike the legalistic past I tried to exist within. Even though I’d never want to re-live the beginning of this winter, I would do it again if it was the catalyst to bring me as close to Jesus as I can celebrate being now. I love New Life Church and all of you for impacting my walk and showing me I could have so much more Jesus. Signed, Emily – living a NEW LIFE.
Nearly 10 weeks ago God restored to me my worship to Him in dance. It has been one of the most incredible gifts He has given me to be able to worship Him with my whole being! However, the excruciating pain my knees I started feeling was almost more than I could bear. This continued for weeks. Young adults in both our prayer and worship time and our young women's home fellowship continued to lay their hands on my knees in faith that God would heal me. I continued to dance regardless of the pain because I knew that God had prepared this time for me to dance in pure joy to Him. This was a clear attack to get me to stop and if it killed me I was going to dance for my King. Then four weeks ago tomorrow something incredible happened. Completely engrossed in His love for almost an entire day, when I say engrossed I mean full on wrapped up in the arms of fiery love, I was completely healed! My knees have no pain. None. I decided that this vessel was going to be His vessel and we stood and believed that God created us to worship. God, always being true to His word and never failing in Love, healed my knees. Now I get to be an even greater crazy worshiper for Him!!!!!! Aubrey L.