Saturday, May 12, 2018

Plants and Runners--Long Term Building

Last night there were long rolls of thunder. I asked the Lord about this because He seemed to be calling my attention to it. He reminded me of recent conversations with Him about long-term planning and building. He has been talking to me about not being impulsive and just living for the moment. I once heard that the Chinese people will create 500 year plans. Banks will normally want a 5 year plan before they will even consider giving you a business loan. Can you imagine a 500 year plan? With a plan like that, you will look at your business differently. The millennium is 1000 years. What is God's 1000 year plan? What is your place in that plan? Ask Him.

Jesus said that one who builds a tower should count the cost to see whether He has enough to finish it. Or a king going to battle needs to consider whether he is able to win the fight with the number of men he has. He was saying this to illustrate that unless we give our entire life to Him, we will not be able to be a disciple of His. In His kingdom, we give it all. We give our whole life. And when we do, He can use it to build His kingdom. Fully committed lives are a valuable resource for the kingdom of God. Luke 14:25-35.

Father, show us Your long term plans. for us personally, for Waterford, and beyond. Show us the long term, long range plan of what You want to build here in Waterford. We don't want to stay stuck in just this moment, limited to just this year, but we want to think long term. What can we start this year that will begin this long term plan? We need the blueprints. We need Your heart, thoughts, words, ideas, strategies, and wisdom. We ask for all those things, and also Your faith, Your love, and Your plans, so what is built here in Waterford will be established for the millennium. We ask for these blueprints so we build Your kingdom and follow Your plan and strategy. 

We need people who have prophetic wisdom and insight who can see long-term. We need the long-range visionaries and prophets. There are the sons of Issachar who understand the times and know what to do (1 Chronicles 12:32), and Jesus sends prophets, wise men and scribes (Matthew 23:34) many of whom are rejected. God is raising up these long-term seers, visionaries and planners. He is raising up apostles and prophets. Those who are not short-sighted.

Lord, increase the length of our sight so we are not short sighted. So we see, know, understand and hear the long-term. So we follow Your long term plan. Prepare us for this journey, this long term thing You're doing.

For some it might be a journey, and for some it may be a stay and plant. For some it might be a long term mobile journey. For some, a long term build in place. And then, there will be connections between the two. The Lord showed me a web, a net, or a network. I saw it as points with lines in between--intersecting all over as in a web or a net. Those who stay in place are like the points on the line. Those who travel from point to point are like the lines themselves. Some travel, some stay. This builds a web, a net, or a network. He will use it to build His kingdom. It's a communication network made up of people who are in communication for the strategic building of His kingdom.

Lord, show us who we are to connect with. Create these lines and points--those who travel and connect, and those who stay and establish. Bring the ones to us we need to be connected with. Let us connect with these runners, these travelers, and these points and places so we can be a part of the network You are building. We ask for these communicators, runners to go out and begin to connect.

Psalm 19:4 tells us that the unspoken "line" of creation sends His message throughout the earth. Lord, cast these lines, these people, these sounds, connect them to the points on the web. Bring those who will connect us. If we are the runners/connectors than show us. If we are an established point than show us that. Show Your people their place in this network. As Waterford grows and builds Your kingdom, bring the runners, the connectors to connect us to other cities and places--people.

The Lord showed me lines of different lengths going out to other places. It reminds me of a plant that sends out shoots. Like a strawberry or mint plant that send out runners that take root and plant further out. These runners go out and then put down root themselves. Then they will send out more runners.

Lord, we want to grow and build that which is the result of being rooted in the soil--planted deep within You. We want to house Your presence. To be firmly established and rooted in You, in faith in You. We're not building for man, for ourselves, but to grow fruit for Your kingdom and to build Your kingdom. It all works as a seed that is planted, grows, and produces fruit. This is the principle we want to operate in. It's not apart from You, but all for You, with Your vision, plans, and purposes. Us  aligning ourselves with You and Your heart. Being that place in your garden that You've called us to. Help us draw deeper into You so our roots go deeper, and are healthy and strong. You are nourishing our roots so they can be strong.

When the roots are strong, they have the strength to push deeper into the soil. Strong roots have the ability to nourish themselves, but they also are able to stand strong against the wind or anything that would try to pluck them up. Receive a nourishment of your roots, and pray for those you are connected with to have strong roots!

When the time of drought comes, the roots of a plant are forced to go deeper to find water. When our roots are strong we will have the strength to go deeper in times of drought. If we are weak, our roots are weak, we wont have the strength during these times of drought to find the nourishment we need. Take advantage of the refreshing rain and nourishment He is sending now. If you do, you will be strong in times of drought.

Father, prepare us and show us how we can receive the strengthening and nourishment of our roots now so that we can have the healthiest and strongest roots possible. So that we as individuals, as well as our families, churches, and community can have the strongest roots possible. Send Your rain, You are sending Your long, soaking rain. The long soaking rain. The long rolls of thunder. We can soak our roots in this rain so they can grow and expand, making us stronger and healthier. So the runners we send out are healthy and strong as well, establishing a good root system.

Help us to see as You do. Help us to see our communities, families, and our own lives & ministries as You do. Help us to see with the vision that You have. Let the runners know the direction to go as they go out. Give us strength and guidance so we don't turn our roots towards the surface because the ground is too hard.

Whatever kind of soil you are in, know that the Lord has planted you there. He knows you can do it. You can thrive in that soil--sandy, clay, acidic, etc. You have the strength to push through the soil if you need to. If He has planted you in sandy soil, you'll thrive, and receive regular rain so you will not dry out. If He has planted you in clay, you'll be able to handle the pressure. Whatever ph level of the soil you are in,  He is well able to keep you nourished and flourishing.

We thank You Lord that You have planted us in this soil for a reason. We are fully equipped to put down roots in this soil, as well as send out runners with new roots and connections. We receive Your strengthening of our roots for our church and community. We ask for the church of Waterford to be a community of people that is strong sending down deep roots. Strengthen the roots of Your people in Waterford. You see Your people as one church. Help us to see as You do. We pray for all of Your people, in Waterford. We ask for their roots to be established. We ask for rain for all of the churches You've established to water the root systems. We ask for strong root systems for all of the churches You have established and placed here. For any that are not established by You, remove them, transplant them to the place You've called them to. Make the ones You've established healthy and strong. Send the rain, send the rain, send the rain. 

Worms in the soil are not bad. Those who aerate the soil are not a bad thing. 

We recognize that whatever gifts You send us help our soil and our garden. We receive them. Give us discernment so we know what is pestilence and predators, and what are garden aids--worms, ladybugs--that are good and healthy for our garden. We receive and welcome Your good gifts. Lord, give us the discernment to know the difference. And give us grace to keep the devourers away. You rebuke them for our sake. (Malachi 3:11).

Lord I pray for the churches within Waterford, the ones You want connected together--the plants and the runners within this community that You created--this network within Waterford. Show us who to be connected with. Send out the runners. That we see those who have the roots and those who are the runners. Establish this network in Waterford. Help us to see that we are all from the same plant, and have the same purpose--to release the fragrance and fruit of You into this community. Show us who to be directly connected with, whether churches, families, or individuals. We pray that Your people put out runners, feelers, connectors. To see where the other plants are that they need to be connected with. Some may send out runners to establish, some may send them out to connect with what is already there and planted.

We ask so Your network connection is established in Waterford, Michigan and beyond. However You desire Your church to be connected. So there are strong roots all over.

The term "grass roots" is often used politically. It is the base of an organization. It's considered the main, "ordinary" people that make up the organization as opposed to the leadership. The thing about grass roots are that they are normally local and strong. They are hard to pull up if you want to get rid of them. You have to dig them out.

The Lord has been showing me recently that there is a place for grass, but also for gardens. Grass roots are good and useful in their place, but God is sending out these runners to establish new plant systems--bases--in several places. This would bring less large central bases and more smaller bases spread all around. These bases can be more easily established and rooted in different territories. They can more readily produce fruit and fragrance. They are more connected to the people, and if one is taken out, there are many more still in place. These plants do what a large, grass roots organization cannot do--bring the fruit or the fragrance of the Lord into an area--into several areas. It's no longer about a lot of people supporting a few leaders, but more people reaching more people.

Lord we cooperate fully with You. We want to be in on what You are doing. Raise up the visionaries. When the prophets and teachers are working together then the apostolic can be established. We need the ministry gifts working together--accepting and embracing each other. The written Word as the foundation and the spoken, current Word of God. We need both--prophetic and teaching. Lord, let the churches in Waterford accept both the teachers and the prophets. Let those who have only accepted Your written Word begin to accept and embrace the prophetic, and those who only prefer the prophetic develop a new hunger for Your written Word. 

Jesus is both--the Word made flesh and the spirit of prophecy. We need to be established in the written Word as well as hear His prophetic revelation for today. Lord, let Your people receive both so we can establish the strong root system that You desire, and be connected together. We want both Your teaching and Your prophetic word. We want to build and prepare for this long term, long range plan You have. What will the millennium be like in this community?

Learn to wait on the Lord. We go out with joy and are led forth with peace. We don't want to rush into anything. Think about the long term consequences of what you do.

The Lord has to be able to trust us with the things He shows us so they can be put in place at the proper time. If we release/use everything right when He gives them to us then they may be used out of place and time. He's trying to give us gemstones that are to be put in a certain place and time, but if we don't have the full vision, or the patience to wait for it, we will use everything now. 

He might give you a word for someone that He may not want you to release now, or ever. He might just want you to know something about a person. The time may come to tell them what He said, or not. He might just be showing you something about a person so you know how to relate and interact with them. There are times He wants us to hold on to some things and wait. Can He trust you with a secret that you are never to share?

Lord, help us to wait on You. Help us to know the proper timing of when and if to say what You show us. Show us when to send out runners, and when to stay and plant. 

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