No Turning Back

 

I can still clearly remember the night, sitting in the second row at church with my head bowed down whilst listening to a visiting Brazilian Four12 pastor. I recall that he was preaching to us on “Identity in Christ” and it seemed to be as if he wasn’t even looking at his notes but was rather speaking straight from the Spirit. It was one of those “all over the place” sermons – in a good way! There was an invitation at the end of his preach for us to respond and I could immediately sense in my spirit that this wasn’t just “business as usual,” as we can so often expect from a Sunday service. He asked for people to respond to the Lord if they wanted to declare to God “use me anywhere, anyhow, anytime etc.” and when I stood up to respond I knew without a doubt that God had seen this and that He took it seriously.

Fast forward 3 months…
In August of last year, I attended a Four12 & Joshua Generation Church (JoshGen) related leaders camp in Wellington. As I was driving out there that first morning, I felt God telling me that I would very soon be hearing the answer to my prayer. It was after the first session of the day that I spoke to Lance McIntosh and he asked if I would be prepared to take over from him in leading the Youth for JoshGen. I could only laugh at God’s sense of humour, and how He always knows what He’s doing – despite our best efforts to anticipate His next move. I decided to seriously pray about this decision. By the end of the week, I quite simply felt the Lord giving me a prophetic picture of me JUMPING off a cliff into a deep pool of water. As simple as this picture was, it was all I needed to say “Yes” to the task at hand – with faith that God knew what He was doing, and would continue to do, in and through me.

One month into this new chapter, and I honestly feel like a new man. I can fondly look back at my 7 years in the corporate world, since leaving Stellenbosch University, and I am incredibly grateful for the refining of my character and preparation of my faith that took place during those years. I would encourage anyone who is feeling called to any particular “position” in ministry to first go experience any job out in the working world so that you can truly understand who it is that Jesus has called us to make disciples of. I may not be going into a corporate office every day now, but I feel that I am able to sympathize and understand the people that I might be preaching to when I next stand behind the pulpit.

The simple Gospel transforms lives
I am 100% convinced that the good news of the Gospel is the only power needed for this next generation to grow into all that God has intended them to be. I have personally experienced the life-changing power of placing my faith in Christ and now want to proclaim this message of freedom to every single teenager in this city. I believe that God wants to raise up a generation that is not satisfied to just know about Him or sing about Him; but would rather have a deep hunger and a desire to KNOW Him above else. I pray that God would do something radical this year in the youth of JoshGen and that would cause us to see a harvest of souls for years to come.

Lastly, I would like to share a vision I felt God share with me in December whilst praying for myself and the youth – I saw a lady on one of the most decorated stages singing over a microphone in front of huge crowds. The melody coming out of her mouth was the most beautiful and musically perfect I have ever heard. And the crowd was stunned into silence by her voice. As she finished the song and left the stage, I suddenly felt the Lord point out to me the microphone left there on the stage. I was amazed at how this microphone was merely just a tool to be placed in the hands of the singer. It had no grounds to boast in and of itself. Its sole purpose is to glorify the voice of the singer using it. I prayed over this vision and felt God say that this is how we should view ourselves in His hands. He is not looking for us to play a melody by ourselves because it will just interrupt what He has already prepared. Just let yourself be a microphone in His hands, that He has prepared far in advance for good works and His great pleasure.

 


ABOUT THE AUTHOR
James is part of Joshua Generation Church meeting in Greenpoint. He has a passion for preaching the gospel and helping others to be transformed by the scandal of God’s grace. He also enjoys rock climbing and patting stranger’s dogs.

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