I was frustrated, discouraged and felt defeated. Working four different jobs to make ends meet was finally taking its toll on me. My wife and I were ready to pack up and move to the Dallas area hoping it would provide the opportunity for a fresh start.
But before we made the final decision to uproot I took a week off to rest and celebrate the New Year with my mother who at that time lived in a small west Texas town.
After spending a few days with mom, on Saturday January 4, 2014, I started my journey home taking the route that would bring me through the Dallas area. I did this having already decided in my mind that when I arrived home we were going to start taking steps to transition north.
But I wanted to pray one more time, this time while traveling through the geographical area I was hoping we’d experience a new beginning.
So while traveling east on Interstate 20 I rolled my window down on a cold wintery morning and started to pray. It doesn’t always happen this way but immediately I heard the voice of God respond to the voice of my prayers.
I heard God saying this next season of my life was not about geographical location but more about getting in His presence and becoming more intimate with Him. I needed to become reacquainted with who He is in me and who I am with Him in me.
I still had around five hours of drive time so I just started to meditate on the wealth of the words I’d just heard.
Approximately two hours later as I’m now traveling south down Interstate 45 I receive a text from a Pastor friend who had no idea where I had been and what I was doing and praying. I’m just going to share the text since I recorded it in one of my journals.
“Dude, the Lord just gave me a word for you. lol! It is found in Ezekiel 44. There is a contrast between the sons of Zadok and the priests. Only the sons of Zadok could approach the Lord and minister before Him. The other priests could minister to the people but couldn’t approach Him. While there is a people God has for you for sure He wanted me to tell you that the new thing He has for you in ministry has arrived but it is more about ministry to Him and in His presence and going to a new level of intimacy and a new place in Him and less about a geographical place in the earth right now. Ministry to people is a far second. Ministry to Him is primary. Read Ezekiel 44. I hope this all made sense. If not give me a call. Blessings on you and Jeanie.”
In a moment of what I like to call “suddenly” God confirmed that I had been hearing His voice and also confirmed my primary assignment for this next season of our lives and ministry.
For over 2 years we remained in the same geographical are but now over 7 years later Jeanie and I pastor a great church in Wichita Falls, Tx. called Encounter Church. We believe God has called us to raise up an army of people that are FIRST encountering God and becoming intimate with Him!
So many times we can be distracted from what’s primary while doing and searching for what we believe God wants us to do. We get caught up in “doing” instead of “being” who called God has called us to be.
What we’re doing for God should come out of who we’re becoming for God and who we’re becoming is formed in God’s presence. The more intimate I become with Him the more I become like Him!
In those seasons I’m uncertain about what God has called me do I can be certain about “who” I’m called to be because being intimate with God is a life-time calling, for all of us!
“Draw near to God and He will draw near to you….” (James 4:8)
Friends God is longing to spend time with you. Make your relationship with Him the priority of your life!
You may ask, but what about the doing? Jesus answered it best in John 15.
“I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.” (John 15:5)
Can you see it, it’s clear? Intimacy comes before doing. Intimacy is God’s will!
Growing in intimacy,