TheCall-AzusaNow

 

I am so grateful that I was able to attend this last Solemn Assembly, Azusa Now, at the Memorial Coliseum with my entire family!  TheCall gatherings have personally impacted my heart during extremely significant stages of my life.  This gathering was another defining moment for me and my family as well as an  H I S T O R I C // GATHERING for the Body of Christ in America and the Nations. I have shared some of my past ‘Call encounters’ on this blog but I would like to share some of them again as well as what I walked away with from Azusa Now.

04.04.03 – Candlestick Park, San Francisco, CA – 30,000

This Call was a part of the ‘Two Calls of California’ as the first Call done in California was held in Southern California on February 22, 2003 in the Rose Bowl. Then Lou Engle proclaimed a 40 day fast leading up to the second Call in San Francisco.  I believe I was brought to this gathering because of the prayer and fasting between these Calls.  I was not even walking with the Lord at this time of my life as I was entrenched in sin and rebellion. I was a 15-year-old sophomore and ironically it was the underground rap music coming out of the Bay Area at this time that had shaped my life doctrines of smoking weed, alcohol, and sex.

Somehow my parents brought me to this thing and I had no idea what to expect and didn’t have a clue who Lou Engle was.  In all honesty I did not pay much attention to what was happening on the stage while I was there and actually left the park at some point to explore the surrounding area.  However, I was prophesied over while walking up at the top of the bleachers and did get pulled into a prayer circle by my brother and his friend.  I did not see any immediate fruit after this and my rebellion and recklessness actually grew stronger from this point for another 3-year period. But, I know that I was there for a reason and that the Lord started directing my steps, even though it got darker before He burst into my life again!  And yes, my future bride, Aimee McGrady was there too!

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(Photo Source)

“Only a massive repentance and prayer assault on the Hollywood Frisco strongholds will prevail.” Lou Engle (Source: Elijah List 2003)

07.07.07 – TheCall Nashville, TN – 74,000+

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I was not at this event but my girlfriend, Aimee (Now my wonderful wife) attended this historic gathering which had over 74,000 people attending. She said it was one of the most powerful gatherings she had been to.  I am thankful that she attended this as I know it fueled her personal purity and her passion for Jesus.  I know for a fact that this gathering helped shape who she is today.

 

 

12.31.07 – TheCall Kansas City, MO – 20,000

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At the end of the year we were able to go to our first Onething Conference from December 28-31 in Kansas City.  I was really excited to see Mike Bickle speak and Misty Edwards (pre-dreads) sing for the first time in person. TheCall partnered with IHOPKC on the 31st to bring in the New Year.  By this time, I was more conscious of Lou ‘The Rocker’ Engle as I heard him speak at a Jesus Culture Conference earlier in the year.  His passion and zeal for prayer and fasting really stirred me up.  I believe the biggest take away from this time in Kansas City was gaining an ever growing heart for prayer and worship.

 

08.16.08 – TheCall Washington D.C – 70,000

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Okay, we did not make it TheCall in D.C, but I GOT THE GIRL, as that was the day we got married!  As thousands dedicated and rededicated themselves to the Nazarite Vow – Aimee and I gave our marriage vows.  I think it is cool that our wedding day lined up with TheCall event.  We even had Ryan and Nina Landis sing a song over us that they wrote specifically for us – who knew they would be closing out TheCall Azusa Now!

 

11.02.08 – TheCall San Diego, CA – 35,000

Regarding moral issues, Lou Engle says Christians in America—particularly right now in California—”stand on a battlefield more significant than Iraq.”

(source)

After getting married 3 months prior we were excited to drive down with a group of people to contend for the sanctity of marriage as the issue of Prop 8 was being decided in CA.  This was a very rich time in the Lord for us as we had helped start a young adult worship movement that started growing in 2007 and there was a grace for pursuing Jesus as the Holy Spirit was stirring our small mountain community.  I would say this was the first time where I was actually going to TheCall filled up and really pressing in with a heart and vision for what the Lord was doing.  I must say this song below was one of the highlights for me (still gives me chills) :

 

09.04.10 – TheCall Sacramento, CA – 18,000

 

This was as the 10 year anniversary of TheCall and a significant point in our lives too, as Aimee was 8 months pregnant with our firstborn, Liberty Reign Atkins.  The fun fact about this is connected to Lou Engle as well, so I will briefly share.  We went out to our 2nd Onething Conference together at the end of 2009. I believe around this point in life we had thought about having kids and then backed out as we were still very young and thought we were not ready as we had only been married for a little over a year!   We ended up staying a few days after the conference for a Leadership Summit (Jan 2010).  Lou starts rocking – I mean talking – and he is sharing about the Contending House of Prayer and how the muslim community is rapidly growing while many Christians have been stuck in the ‘American Dream’ and are no longer ‘bearing fruit and multiplying’ – anyways we decided to go against the spirit of this age and found out we were pregnant in February 2010.

Here were the 4 points that we were contending for in Sacramento:

1. “We are going to pray for our government.” (Psalms 2)

2. “We are going to call on God for a great river of the blood of Christ out of the Cross in Sacramento and Jesus to give us another Jesus Movement.”

3. “We are going to pray that a massive house of prayer movement will arise in every place calling on God for the harvest and loosing a generation into the missions movement.”

4. “And we’re going to believe that God is going to shape the elections.”

“God is the God that answers prayer!” – Lou Engle

 

 

02.03.2016 AzusaNow Pre-Call Rally – Revive Warehouse – Tuolumne City, CA

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It was an honor to be able to host one of the Pre-Call Rallies in my home town with Ryan and Nina Landis leading us in worship.  Aimee and I were given the opportunity to host some of the SAFA (Spiritual Air Force Academy) students for the night and it truly was a blessing.  It was so good to be able to partner in this way – even though our town is small and unknown it was awesome that we could rally together in this way.  The SAFA team was so kind and friendly and many of them blessed us by praying over us and giving words of encouragement to us.  It was amazing to see some of the young Native American’s that stayed with us up on the stage during a segment of TheCall AzusaNow crying out for an AWAKENING and releasing healing over our Nation.  It was powerful to have the First Nations People leading in dance and worship – such a blessing!

04.09.2016 – TheCall Azusa Now – Memorial Coliseum, Los Angeles, CA

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To be at this Solemn Assembly was such a blessing.  It was on our radar for over a year and I knew this was something that our whole family had to be a part of. Getting there was something we really had to fight for – but we have been feeling the pull on our hearts to do life and ministry in the midst of family.  Now we have 3 girls – Liberty Reign (5), Adessa Promise (3) & Riah Joy (11 mo) and we felt that the biggest thing we would get out of this was doing it as a family and believing that this would shape our girls’ future in Christ. It was WAY more of a challenge to have them there and stay engaged as much as we would have liked to, but it was totally worth it all!    

After the 6 hour drive down the night before and the early morning wake up to get parking, take the metro and wait in line; it already seemed like a long day!  We found ourselves inside the grand coliseum around 8 and set up camp. To make it even more of a challenge my wife had a wedding in Santa Barbara (2hrs away) on the same day!  This was something that she could not say no to, so she left at 12:30pm to the wedding with her mom and our youngest. Shout out to my parents and Aimee’s mom for helping us and for being godly examples to our girls!

As the clouds covered us and the rain came and went in gentle waves – everyone pressed through. To be a part of a Joel 2 gathering, while the nations are raging according to the Psalm 2 prophecy, it was powerful to see His people crying out for an Acts 2 outpouring .  On the stage and all around there was repentance, reconciliation and relationship as real men and women sought the heart and will of God together.  There was not one negative thing said against the Church from the stage and I believe there was a real spirit of unity displayed that day.

 

>>>>>>>>>>>>>  >  >  > >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>   #FLYINGUNITED   <<<<<<<<<<<<<<  <  <  <  <<<<<<<<<<<<<<images

 

 

Jesus was glorified as different parts of the Body of Christ came together to lift up His name in praise.

(Eddie James and Worship Team)

The Gospel was preached, Salvation taken hold of, healings broke out, words of knowledge were released and prophecy was spoken.

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(Photo Source: Facebook)

(Evangelist Todd White and Lindy Conant w/ Circuit Riders Worship Team)

Let this be the new normal Christian life, because NOW IS THE TIME and He is the One True Living God.  I am walking away with a greater Love for Christ and His Body.  I have a renewed mind and spirit to see the things of God take place in my life.  I am answering THE CALL and extending the tent pegs by doing my part of HIS STORY.  I am raising my family up to live and believe in the fullness of Jesus Christ unto His glorious return. #HistoryisHiring

Jesus, I pray that ‘Stadium Christianity’ would continue as Your people humble themselves and seek Your face. This truly is just the beginning and I am hungry and expectant to see more of the Presence and Power of the Lord manifested by His Spirit, through His sons and daughters.  May all who were a part of this historic day GO FORTH in V I C T O R Y by the       B  L  O  O  D   of the   L  A  M  B!

And to end the night my beautiful wife and youngest daughter made it back just in time to see our best friends close out TheCall! God brings LIBERTY to the captives, He remembers His every PROMISE and He releases His rivers of JOY

 

 

Thank you Lou Engle and TheCall Team!

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(Photo Source: TheCall Facebook Page)

 

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Pray and Wait – Azusa Street

 

“My dear brother in the faith: Many thanks for your kind letter.  I am impressed of your sincerity and honesty of purpose.  Congregate the people together who are willing to make a total surrender.  Pray and wait.  Believe God’s promises.  Hold daily meetings.  May God bless you, is my earnest prayer.  Yours in Christ, Evan Roberts.”   Azusa Street – Frank Bartleman

This was a corresponding letter from Evan Roberts, of the Welsh Revival, replying to Frank Bartleman, before the Azusa Street Revival broke out.  I am going to briefly touch on these 5 points given from Evan Roberts, but I also want to recommend reading this book below.  It is a powerful testimony of Frank Bartleman’s life and gives great insight to how Holy Spirit was moving during this mighty outpouring.

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I know that there is not a a specific formula to revival, however, I think as humans we tend to complicate things!  I have heard it said that prayer precedes outpouring and I have found that to be true time and time again after reading several accounts of historic revivals.  Evan Roberts was used mightily in the Welsh Revival and I believe these simple points shared with Frank Bartleman helped spark the Azusa Street Revival.  I know William Seymour played a HUGE role, but it was the small beginnings of prayer that lead to this massive breakthrough. Even today, prayer is being restored in the church and many are gathering and seeking the Lord for another great outpouring of His Spirit.

 

  • Congregate The People Together: We find this simple truth in passages like 2 Chronicles 7:14, Joel 2:16, Matthew 18:20, and the Epistles to the Churches. Obviously the coming together of God’s people is nothing new and we see it being established in Church History.  Most believers do this once or twice a week and that is great start!  We expect to give 2 hours on Sunday and possibly 2 hours on Wednesday night.  Is that our all though?  Do we expect the miraculous?  Do we feel united in our own congregations while contending together for breakthrough?  Small and large gatherings are very important as Jesus reminds us that ‘where two or more are gathered, He is in our midst.’  But are we willing to be stretched past the normal Christian gathering?

 

I surrender all,
I surrender all.
All to Thee, my blessed Savior,
I surrender all. (source)

 

  • Make Total Surrender:  The second point that Evan Roberts makes in relationship to congregating the people, is finding those that are willing to make a total surrender.  I realize this does not sound fun. Sometimes I am barely able to give up 2 hours on a Sunday morning!  And it is the ‘getting together’ that is actually somewhat doable – but making a TOTAL SURRENDER HURTS!  Many ‘christian’ gatherings outside of Sunday Mornings are filled with shallow conversations, personal opinions with commentaries that have a lot of talk ‘about’ God.  But what does it look like to surrender our agenda’s and personal gain?  How do we go about making a total surrender to God? This is not an easy process and will not happen overnight but I believe the simplified answer to this is found in the next point.

 

  • Pray and Wait:  Can we give our words and time to Jesus?  This causes us to start giving our attention to Him! I think that this is a big piece of total surrender, maybe not all, but let’s start here.  As humans we are prone to rush to the bigger, better and more exciting things of the ministry!  However, it was Jesus that gave this direction to His disciples.  When the disciples asked about His return, His answer was, ‘watch and pray’.  In the garden, the night before His crucifixion, Jesus instructed them to ‘watch and pray’ so as to not enter into temptation but to be engaged with the spirit.  When Jesus instructed the disciples to ‘wait in Jerusalem before being endowed by power from on high’, they knew that they had to add the ingredient of prayer!  PRAYING AND WAITING ON THE LORD can seem like the most difficult thing in the world, only because we are weak and fickle human beings.  Yet, history proves that the great men and women of faith that gave themselves to prayer and waiting on the Lord received the breakthrough.

 

  • Believe God’s Promises: In the midst of prayer and waiting we must hold on to the promises from God.  Abraham had to contend for this and even fell short in the WAITING, but we see that Abraham is called faithful as he witnessed part of God’s promise come to pass!  Believe God’s promises with other believers in the midst of praying and waiting.  There is power in agreement.  Contend for the fullness and confess your weakness and shortcomings when it comes to unbelief.  Ultimately He is faithful and we get to partner with Him!  This step helps us see the BIG PICTURE – no matter how we are feeling during a particular gathering, be reminded of His personal and corporate promises.

 

  • Hold Daily Meetings:  If we are faithful with the little – we will be given more.  With points 1-4 in place and a steadfast heart to run the race, we won’t have to force multiplication.  There is a supernatural trigger that gets set off when hungry people start pressing into Jesus – THEY WANT M O R E!  Once we taste and see, our spirits will long to ‘go on getting filled’.  He is our source and it will always start with Him and as He supplies the grace it will go on with Him.  Let’s start with one meeting a week outside of the typical Christian gathering and see what happens.
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Welsh Revival
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“O’ GOD, BEND ME!”

 

At the turn of the 20th Century one of the greatest outpourings since the 2nd Great Awakening broke forth, impacting much of the world. Leading up to this great outpouring known as the Welsh Revival of 1904, there was a rumbling of prayer going forth in the land. Prayer was not just isolated to Wales, but the believers in the area were being stirred up to see a revival and started what they called ‘Prayer Circles’.

Pastors were being convicted, prayer meetings were filled through the night and into the early morning hours and the youth were being struck by the presence of the Lord. The Spirit was moving upon the darkness and chaos that filled Wales during that period of time; as alcoholism, gambling, prostitution, and other serious crimes were running rampant. In the midst of these stirrings the Lord moved in a dramatic way upon a young man named Evan Roberts.

Evan Roberts was born June 8, 1878 in Loughor, Wales. By the age of 9 he was helping his dad in the coal mines, due to his dad breaking his leg. He continued in the mines and also learned the trade of a blacksmith, but it was during these younger years that he acquired his hunger for Scripture, prayer, and revival. The deacon at his church, William Davies told Evan to never miss a prayer meeting in case the Holy Spirit would come and he would be missing. Evan faithfully attended a prayer meeting or bible class nearly 6 days a week for over 10 years! Evan had very little education but his pastor encouraged him to pursue the ministry. At the age of 26 in 1904 he left the mines behind and entered into a preparatory college. Evan never did go on to finish his education, as the Lord had much greater plans for the young man.

Evan started having intense encounters with the Lord during the year of 1904 in his quiet times. Often he would be woken up at 1 am and would spend time with the Lord until 5am and then would go back to sleep. It was during a prayer meeting that year, held at the college where an evangelist named Seth Joshua was praying, “O’ God, bend us”. This prayer caused Evan Roberts to come forth in great agony of spirit saying, “O’ God, bend me!” He received a great burden for lost souls and felt like he was going to burst.
After this Evan knew he could no longer pursue his education as he felt the Spirit was telling him to go speak at his home church. It was at this prayer meeting at his home church, Moriah Chapel, where he was impressed to share in front of the 17 young adults that stayed to listen. He shared these four tenets that were key points through out the entire revival.

‘You must confess any known sin to God and put any wrong done to others right.

Second, you must put away any doubtful habit.

Third, you must obey the Spirit promptly.

Finally, you must confess your faith in Christ publicly.’ – (source pg. 7)

By November 1904 upon Evans return, the fire from heaven consumed him and his band of friends during their prayer meetings. Evan had prophesied that a great revival was coming to Wales. The reports spread like wildfire as more people were being drawn to these meetings. Eventually the newspapers caught on and started reporting on this miraculous move. The meetings were spontaneous and would break out in prayer and song (one of their favorites). There was very little preaching or leading in the traditional sense. The youth were being filled and led by the spirit in great and marvelous ways. Dave Matthews an eye-witness of the revival said,

“Even the little children between nine and twelve years of age prayed with wisdom and fluency that sounded uncanny.” (source)

Can you imagine turning on the T.V. on a Sunday afternoon to watch a NFL football game only to hear the announcer’s state that ALL the players were absent because they were in revival meetings?! Pubs were closed, jails were empty, police men were jobless, coal mines were filled with prayer and praise and churches were packed out.  They say that crime was cut in half and that many denominational churches were flourishing. People from all over the globe were coming to taste and see and to bring the fire back home. There was a holiness and obedience to God throughout the revival.

Many were being convicted and true conversions were multiplying by the day. Some said that it looked like there was no order, but there was never any confusion! Through the next year, thousands were saved and the entire regions of Wales and beyond were transformed. Evan Roberts was an obvious leader that the Lord had marked during this revival, but Evan was very humble and always pointed to Jesus. The revival in all its fervency is said to have lasted between two and three years, but the impact in Wales and around the world lasted much longer.

We can learn a lot from historic revivals, good and bad; there is a lot to glean from how the Lord has poured out His Spirit in the past and how His people have been steward’s of it.  But what can we do now?  Pray!  Pray for another outpouring of the Spirit, personally, corporately and globally.  What kind of spiritual atmosphere will we be leaving for our children and grandchildren? I am not against growth strategies, evangelistic outreach, bible studies, added church functions, weekly services or anything that involves the coming together of His people.  Most of the Kingdom work is done daily through the small and often tedious steps of life.  But I want to see the church alive.  I want to see the Spirit poured out on His people.  I want to see a city transformed!  Is the Spirit stirring you up to see revival in your city?  Press into Jesus and ask Him what He wants to do in you and through you!

 

“Before the Spirit can flow through you, He must work in you” Evan Roberts

 

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History of Night and Day Prayer

Hey friends,

I am Hoping to give some more posts on PRAYER with these coming months. Check out my current series, MY WALK THROUGH REVELATION in the mean time.

Now that you are here, I thought I would start my prayer posting with a great video message from Jono Hall, A Short History of Night and Day Prayer.  I found this message very helpful and encouraging.  I do feel like God is stirring up the Church to pray in this hour.  What do you think?

 

Thanks for taking the time to watch! If you want the notes to this session, here is the link. NOTES

Stay tuned for more.

 

Blessings,

 

Patrick

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The Shop Pt. 3

The SHOP Series:

Part I

Part II

PART III

By June 2009 the SHOP was at its peak and the summer continued to be full of fun, growth, and challenges.  This was the beginning of a pivotal season for us as we were given a very sobering and challenging word that revealed a fork in the road and called us to the less traveled and higher path of the Cross.  This message also came with a time frame of about 3 months.

The first Tuesday of July 2009 Steven and Andrew set up the SHOP outside on the back patio of the Gerber house property.  It was not the smoothest transition, as we had a new worship leader along with new distractions; but it was a lot cooler and could hold more people.   We were back inside the SHOP the following Tuesday and it was another full house filled with worship, prayer, unity, and an awesome testimony by a gentleman named Paris.

We had a new friend, Tyler Johnson, come from Washington the next week through a connection of a couple that wanted to fly him out to share at the SHOP as well as at our local church.  The 8 of us met with Tyler, his wife Christine, and friend Adam Short, at our house the Saturday before the SHOP.  There was an instant connection as we prayed and worshiped and received encouragement from our new friends.  I had a unique encounter at the end of our fellowshipping that I will never forget. There was a great connection and we were all excited to hear Tyler share at the SHOP.

That Monday our pastor had graciously said yes to host the shop for worship as Tyler spoke.  This was a big success in our eyes as a lot of church members came together in one place to worship Jesus.  The worship that night was very powerful and released a great measure of freedom and joy.  On a side note we found out that night that a meteorite the size of earth struck the planet Jupiter (There is more to it, but we felt that there was some significance behind it).  Tyler shared again at the SHOP (outside on the back patio) with encouraging stories and testimonies.   There were over 150 people gathered and we had a fun fire tunnel followed with 13 baptisms in the pool at the end of the night!  It was a great night full of Jesus.

August was busy as far as leadership went as we all felt like it was important to figure out a clear vision and mission statement for the SHOP.  Because of the rapid growth that we were experiencing we started to get bombarded with questions!  This was a good thing and caused us to step back and look at what we believed the SHOP was called to.  By now we had each shaped our own ideas, influences and agendas about what it was to us personally so it took some time to hammer out.  I must admit that we easily complicated this process and mixed in a lot of flesh instead of simply seeking the Lord in prayer.  Aimee and I noticed during this time that the core leadership circle was being tested causing our friendships to be strained.

During the month of September Steven took a break from worship and we ended up having a lot of guest speakers.  We started the month by watching The Finger of God, which is a great documentary on some of God’s moves and miracles around the Globe.  We were then blessed to have Ryan Helbling lead worship and share a message as he was back from Africa for the remainder of the year.  On the 22nd Isa Agape came and shared an awesome message that the Lord had been placing in her heart over the last couple of months.  Young, old, and new faces continued to show up as we enjoyed the summer outside.

The last Tuesday of the month was a very difficult night; looking back this also marked the end of the period for the word that we had received.  We had found out that a local teenager, Emmitt Broaddus, was killed in a car accident right before we gathered; he was a friend of many.  There was also a very large group of black birds circling around the property for about 20 minutes, which we found to be very bizarre.  Steven, Andrew, Sonja, and Bethany all went to the hospital to pray for him and his family.  Carlie, Aimee, and I felt led to get everyone in a circle to pray until we felt breakthrough. It was rough but we did feel some breakthrough at the end.

Our season out on the patio ended and so did our season on the property.  We had our last shop meeting in the actual shop building October 6, 2009.  It felt great to be back in the shop and have our old friends Ryan and Nina Landis leading worship to bring things back to the heart of worshipping Jesus!  Being outside was good but I believe it brought a lot of distractions naturally and spiritually.

We had corporately made the decision to move our place of meeting down the hill, into an old warehouse in Tuolumne City.  We were outgrowing the old shop and had some issues that needed attention; like parking, bathrooms, and the leaking roof.  I went up to the owner of the building after church one day to inquire about using his place and before I finished explaining everything he had graciously put the key to the building in my hand.   We had also gotten some cool words about the fire flowing down the hill.  I have always had a heart for Tuolumne and saw this as a dream come true!  I believe that there was a grace to move and that the Lord wanted to start moving in Tuolumne City in a greater way!  With that being said, a huge part of the shop was dearly missed.

This warehouse was MUCH BIGGER, had plenty of parking, and two bathrooms…but the best part was it fit us perfectly.  It had dirt floors, old church chairs, and was centrally located in a town that needs much reviving!  So we had our first gathering in Tuolumne, October 13, 2009.  I was super excited as a couple of my Tuolumne friends showed up after not seeing them for a while.  It felt like a smooth transition.  It was also raining that night and it sounded beautiful as the raindrops poured down on the old metal roofing.

Tyler Johnson came back for our second meeting in the new place and helped us break it in a little more.  The leadership also started meeting around this time with an amazing couple whose heart is to refresh those in ministry.  The timing was great as there were feelings and stirrings going on between the leadership as well as in the community.  It was good to have an outside source come and help us in some practical ways.  These meetings were very healthy and brought some things to the surface that Aimee and I were unaware of.

As November and December rolled around the shop was good but the building was getting beyond cold.  We had little space heaters set up, but everyone was being challenged by the frigidness.  This put even more strain on the leadership as it seemed like the grace was lifting.  I felt like we were to weather the storm so to speak but it may have just been my stubbornness.  I also felt like during the last few months of the year that I was fighting something that I couldn’t see at the time.  The leadership team also lost two big pieces as Bethany went on a mission’s trip to Africa and Carlie went to a prayer internship on the East Coast.

Aimee and I started taking a good look at what the shop had become to us and how it had started to become our identity.  We had realized that our friendships between the leaders had turned into something completely other than, as everything revolved around the shop!  There was no doubt that His presence was still there, but we both started asking the question as to why we needed to be on the leadership team.  With the growth, changes of season and our weaknesses, I believe that the leadership team had gotten distracted.

At the end of December Aimee and I attended the OneThing Conference in Kansas City as well as the leadership summit.  This was an impactful time for us as we felt a release from the SHOP leadership.  We both strongly felt that we were to start a family after hearing a powerful message from Lou Engle.   It was also confirmed with us that we were to pursue prayer and worship on a deeper level while growing in His Word.  January 17, 2010 we let the team know that we were stepping down in hopes to continue to be friends.  About a month after this decision we found out that Aimee was pregnant with Liberty Reign.  This was very exciting news for us as our steps were confirmed and our family started to blossom.

The shop continued to weather through the winter and with spring time Kaenan and LauraLee got married March 19, 2010.  I will end this session here and see if there is room for another one down the road.  It was a wonderful to see the Lord work through the shop and I am very thankful that I got to be apart of it.  Thank you for taking the time to read this.  Feel free to share any of your own stories in the comments!

 

 


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The SHOP Pt. 2

Don’t miss out on Part One

Continued…PT. 2.

There was a special shift in the supernatural when we moved into the shop. The first night in the new setting seemed different, in a good way.  I believe it was partly due to the family history of the Gerber property.   My great aunt Ginny and uncle Bill Gerber (the land owners since the beginning of Ponderosa Hills) always envisioned some sort of house of prayer in the area.  That being said, the property had been filled and continues to be filled with prayer and worship. I also realize that there was a huge grace and blessing from the Lord because He loves us loving Him!

August was a year of new beginnings for me.  As we transitioned from Tuesday Night Worship at the blue house to Tuesday nights at The SHOP, an even bigger shift came as I went from being single to married!  Aimee and I got married at Chapel in the Pines, Saturday August 16, 2008.  It was a fun season as life continued to be full for us.

The first time we had someone come visit the shop from out of town was on September 7, 2008 (a Sunday)Through our connection with Aunt Lisa, Pastor Paul Harris came for two nights to pray and share.  Also, some of Lisa’s intercessor/prophetic friends came up from LA.  Paul described the shop environment as “ a campfire with couches” and felt like the region was, “Sitting on a very powerful combustible place in the Spirit”He shared a little bit the first night but most of the evening was spent in intense prayer.

The second night (Monday the 8th) was very powerful for Aimee and I as we were ministered to after Pastor Paul shared.  Aunt Lisa’s friends were really operating in the prophetic gift and blessed us so much with insight and encouragement.  I will never forget what was shared that night.  One of the words spoken for the shop was,  You bring Him comfort, you bring Him joy, and you bring Him friendship and love.”

Tuesday’s continued to make an impact on me and others as we all kept showing up never really knowing what to expect.  Steven Robbins really started taking off with his incredible worship gifting and the Presence of the Lord continued to manifest and move each tuesday night.  On the 19th we had our first open shop meeting to share input, ideas, and direction.  There was still no official “leaders” team set up then. That following Tuesday night, our amazing friends and leaders since near the beginning, Andrew and Sonja Heisinger, got married September 23, 2008 as we all got to celebrate with them.

We felt like it was time to make the shop a little bit nicer so we had another workday on October 25th.  You can watch the footage below to catch a glimpse of all the “excitement”.

 

November 25th stands out to me as I remember my long time friend Wyatt coming for the second time.  Wyatt had no religious background and lived a rough walk of life.  After sitting through worship for about twenty minutes and feeling tired, he closed his eyes.  As his eyes were closed he saw a bright light get brighter and brighter and the coattails of darkness fleeing the scene.  The light got so bright that he could no longer keep his eyes closed and he was filled with energy and jumped up to tell my cousin Kaenan about it.  He was so excited and at the end of the night he shared in front of everyone his experience and said, “Before tonight I didn’t believe in God.”

It was right around the end of the year when I believe we felt led to form a team of leaders for Tuesday nights.  There were no special requirements other than we had all been apart of this thing from the beginning.  It ended up being Carlie Vogt, Bethany Williams, Steven Robbins, Andrew and Sonja Heisinger, and Aimee and me.  Not too long after this we brought Kaenan Whitman on board because he is a fireball and had recently moved to the area after our wedding.  The shop also was on Kaenan’s grandparent’s property, so he carried a level of authority.

The year 2009 rolled around and Holy Spirit continued to fill us up while the shop kept filling up with new people!  We had a group of 20 make it up to Jesus Culture on February 6-7 and it was a blast.

That following Tuesday, the 10th,

“75 people came, even though it was cramped, worship broke through amazingly quick and we were not able to get to anything else we had planned for the night.  The Holy Spirit loves to move when hungry people make themselves available.” (Taken from an email)

Ryan Landis

2009 was a great year for the shop, we had a lot of visitors!  On February 17th, we had Ryan and Nina Landis come and rock out with us!  It was definitely a packed house.  One of the neighbors elbow got healed that night and Ryan and Nina encouraged us by saying, “No formula and no structures equals easy access to GOD! Keep doing what you’re doing, we don’t have to try to create anything…it’s already here!”  They were super uplifting and ended the night with some prophetic ministry.  And we got to bless them by taking up an offering that was rather staggering for our crazy group oddballs.

March 31st was a monumental moment for everyone that was at the shop that night.  Steven had the fun idea (I thought it was very random at the time) to make it pajama night!  So, regardless of how I really felt…I showed up in my pj’s and so did a lot of other people.  There was close to 90 people and at least 4 physical healings!

One of the healings that took place really stands out as I was praying for her with a friend.  She came in that night on crutches with a knee brace.  The prior Thursday she had blown her knee out when she collided with another player during her soccer game.  She was taken to the hospital and the doctors confirmed that she would need surgery and told her to keep ALL pressure off of her injured leg.   Long story short we prayed for her and asked if she felt anything and she said no.  We prayed again and asked her to try bending her leg.  We took off the brace and she was able to move it a little bit.  We continued to contend for healing in her leg and she said she could tangibly feel something while we were praying and tears started streaming down her face.  She ended up putting her full weight on her leg and at the end of the night she walked out of the shop without her brace and crutches!!!  It was a powerful testimony.  The best part was that the doctor confirmed that her leg was fine the next day, April 1, 2009.  I realized now looking back that her healing was confirmed a year to the day from when we had our first Tuesday night at the blue house.

March 31, 2009 Pajama Night!

May 30th, we had the honor of hosting Shampa Rice.  There were around 120 people listening intently to her message that was filled with LOVE.  This was also around the time that Jake Hamilton’s music from Marked By Heaven started influencing our worship time 🙂 .  July 16th, Elyssa Williams came and shared and encouraged us with a word that she got for the shop.  Part of it said,  “How I love you, I have seen your prayers and heard your cries, I have seen how you reach out and welcome the broken and the hurting and have opened your arms and chased after what others have abandoned.” Aunt Lisa and her intercessor friends came up again for a Tuesday night (6/23/09) and we had an amazing “fire tunnel” at the end of the night that rocked all of us!

And this only leads us up to half of the year!  I know that I am just giving highlights and small glimpses, but every Tuesday night was special and filled with His presence whether I personally felt something or not… someone was always encountering His love.

To be continued…


 

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The SHOP Pt. 1

THE SHOP: Part One, The Beginnings

The beginning: this is important to know. Before the gathering officially started it was birthed in Aimee Atkins (then McGrady’s) heart. I asked her why she felt lead to start Tuesday Nights and she said, “I had it on my heart for a couple of months to start a college age worship group. Just a time to be with the Lord and worship freely with no limitations.” At the time Aimee was too old for youth group and was hungry for a place to gather with like hearted people that were close in age.

So the origins of “Tuesday Night Worship” started on a Tuesday night (imagine that!) in October of 2007 (possibly the 16th). Aimee’s heart was stirred so she went to a few other worshipers and they gathered in her parent’s living room. It was a very small group of young adults that came together in a little living room to worship a BIG GOD. I must clarify that the heart of this was not started out of a dissatisfaction or frustration with the church. It was simply another time to meet outside of Sunday morning to love on Jesus through worship, prayer and fellowship.

There were guitars, some bongos, and hungry hearts. It was very simple and low key with a genuine focus on Jesus and building friendships. There was no agenda or task list. From the beginning freedom was honored as the Holy Spirit showed up time and time again. This continued for 6 months every Tuesday in the McGrady living room.

It was not too long after this that I flew Aimee out to Albuquerque, New Mexico with me and proposed March 24, at the Rio Grande. I proposed to her at the same place that I got baptized on Easter Sunday the year before! This was a great time for both of us as we were working full time and maturing as the Lord was unfolding His plans before us.  Aimee’s heart for worship was blossoming before the Lord and I starting to feel a fire for prayer like never before! Not to mention that we were making amazing new friends from all over the place.

Aimee (my fiance’ at the time) had told me about the get-together but I had never made the effort to show up. I didn’t know any of Aimee’s “Christian friends” yet. Eventually I showed up and it was awesome! I wanted this thing at my house! I know that sounds selfish but I had just moved into a new place with my roommate Jordan Geary and our living room was perfect.  As the worship time ended I asked what everyone thought about moving it up the hill to my place. It is a pretty funny story looking back because other than Aimee and her brother Ryan, no one knew me and I hadn’t said much to anyone before. I remember everyone looking around and then the consensus was, “Ya, that sounds cool.”

The 8 people that were there that night must have each told one friend because that next Tuesday, April 1, 2008, there were 16 people gathered! It was a great first night to break in the new place. We had a time of putting on a Misty Edwards CD and started going at it in prayer for people. A few were falling down in the spirit, others were filled with laughter, and some were weeping. The Spirit broke loose and His presence was very thick and tangible in the dimly lit living room that evening.

It was exciting that the Lord was moving and hearts were being touched. There was anticipation building that whole week and as word spread, 25 people showed up that next Tuesday. Because we never had time for announcements each week, Steven Robbins (one of the amazing worship leaders from the beginning) started up a g-mail account under the name, Acts2Gathering, to share any changes, announcements, suggestions, prayer requests or testimonies. The first one sent April 20, 2008 and read as follows:

Yes, you can bring a friend… or a few…Yes, adults and children are allowed to come…Yes, you can arrive late or leave early if you need to …Yes, you can share some scripture during our time of worship…Yes, you can bring an instrument and play along if you want to…Yes, you can request that we lay hands on you and pray for you…YES, YOU CAN EXPECT THAT NOT EVERY WEEK WILL BE THE SAME AS THE ONE BEFORE. We are very open to many things as long as we keep our focus on the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Our purpose for meeting is to worship freely and expressively and to expect God to respond to our worship and prayers. Please pray for corporate breakthrough in our worship, revival in our county, and for more souls to come to Jesus.

By the beginning of May there were at least 40 plus people packing into our two-bedroom house. Jordan and I stopped putting the furniture back in order and just left it the way it was until the next gathering. With that many people we took out the dinner table and chairs to open up space and it still wasn’t enough! We had people lined down the narrow hallway, the living room was maxed out, and the dinning room and kitchen were full. Did I mention that 40 worshipping kids in a house without A/C during the start of summer makes things a little hot?

Every night was unique as we honored each other to create a “safe atmosphere” and allow freedom to worship Jesus. There were new faces each week, some with church backgrounds and others had never been to church before or had never seen anything like Tuesday Nights. Worship, prayer, prophetic words, reading the Word, and sharing testimonies resulted in freedom, joy, breakthrough, and unity.

I just read a quote from Rick Joyner that said, “If Jesus is in it, a cave will have more glory than the greatest human structure.” One thing was certain, it was God breathed and Jesus was there! It was completely out of our hands as we all marveled at what God was doing amongst us.

Nearing the end of May our biggest problem was not people thinking we were some type of a cult. It was parking and more room for the explosion of kids that were coming in. There was actually a lot of support and encouragement from adults in the area even though some didn’t want to show up to scare away anyone :). A grass roots prayer covering started up as news was spreading fast! All of the “young adults” that had been there from the beginning went to church and had parents that were excited about it and were praying protection along with others that had got wind of what was going on.

On June 16th a huge door had opened up, thanks to my aunt Lisa Whitman (Gerber) and Nancy Allen. I cannot stress enough the role that these two played in the whole thing. They were praying and felt led to let us crazy young kids use the old shop on the Gerber property. When they shared with us this grand idea, we were stoked! Of course this old shop was filled with junk and had been sitting unused for a long time. That following weekend we had a shop workday and cleared out a ton of stuff.  The shop is located right behind the house that we were currently meeting at.

By the first of July, we had our first group of adults come to the house; 3 local couples that carry a fathers and mothers heart for our generation. It was an awesome night and the couples started showing their wonderful love and support ever since. We had one more shop workday on the 19th as I was pushing to have it ready before Aimee and I got married. It was great to see how the Lord provided. I was driving down the road and saw a free carpet sign and was able to pick it up and lay it across the cement shop floor. There were also some old family couches with no place to go that fit nicely in our new/old gathering spot. I can’t say that the shop smelled or looked great, but it was just what we needed.

On the 22nd the doors were open for worship and prayer as we had our first Tuesday Night Worship gathering in what was dubbed as “The SHOP” from there on out.  It was a great transition; as usual the presence of the Lord was there as we gave ourselves to worshiping Jesus.

 

Continued…Pt 2

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The Moravian Revival

Well folks this is what we have all been waiting for!  Thanks for the patience to all my faithful followers.  Here are the past posts if you missed any: MORAVIAN MOVE SERIES.

 

August 13, 1727 was a day not to be forgotten to those who lived in the community at Hernhut.  Now as you know from the previous post, this community of Christian believers had held a variety of doctrines and beliefs when it came to their faith.  There were many persecuted denominations represented including the Moravian Brethren (Unity of Brethren), Lutherans, Reformist, Schwenkfelders, Calvanists, separatists, and Baptists. A few months prior to that day, the community was in turmoil due to bickering and quarreling over their religious differences.

Count Zinzendorf, the owner and visionary of the land was grieved over the disunity of the Christian community.  And during the month of May 1727, he and his family came to permanently live in Hernhut. He gave his life to see this home of refugees be a place filled with the presence of God.  His passion to see this come to pass drove him to a deeper level of prayer for the people at Hernut.  He taught fiercely on the unity of Christians found in the Bible, the importance of prayer, and he also had the members sign a “Brotherly Agreement.”

He called all of them, “to seek out and emphasize the points in which they agreed”

This dedicated approach from Zinzendorf blew open the doors of grace for a great level of repentance, prayer, and unity! After this raising of a new standard, passionate prayer groups started up and new hymns flowed forth giving praise to the Savior.  God’s presence, unity and intercession increased through out the summer and much travail went out from Hernhut for even more of His presence.

It was August the thirteenth when Zinzendorf called the congregation for a special communion early that Wednesday morning.  Then it happened; the whole community felt the tangible outpouring of the Holy Spirit!  This was a moment that was unexplainable to many but was said to be much like the day of Pentecost recorded in the book of Acts 2.

Rev John Greenfield a Moravian historian said, “They hardly knew if they had been on earth or in heaven.” in his book Power from on High.

James Montgomery a Moravian Hymn writer, wrote this piece later on describing the event:

“They walked with God in peace and love, But failed with one another; While sternly for the Faith they strove, Brother fell out with brother; But He in whom they put their trust, Who knew their frames that they were dust, Pitied and healed their weakness. He found them in His House of Prayer, With one accord assembled; And so revealed His presence there, They wept with joy and trembled: One cup they drank, one bread they brake, One baptism shared, one language spake, Forgiving and forgiven. Then forth they went with tongues aflame In one blest theme delighting; The love of Jesus and His name, God’s children all uniting; That love our theme and watchword still, Thy law of love may we fulfill, And love as we are loved.”

It was a glorious day for the Moravians that launched a deeper passion for God’s Word, prayer, Hymns, and eventually missions. From this day forth they held meetings three times a day (4am 9am and 9pm) to pray and give thanks to God.

They also established 24-7 prayer! They started with 24 men and 24 women, each being assigned to one hour of the day to pray and they dubbed it Hourly Intercession.  Yes, it is true that this 24-7 prayer model lasted 100 years! This developed what they called Daily Watchwords resulting in one of the oldest and most popular daily devotionals.

Out of their prayer meetings they received a great zeal for missions.  They ended up sending out many missionaries’ abroad being among the first to reach out to slaves.  The Moravian missionary’s even made it to the United States and received a burden to spread the gospel to the Native Americans.

The missionaries going out from Hernhut were fearless unto death for the sake of Christ.  This Moravian mission movement was the first successful wide spread surge from the protestant reformation.  Zinzendorf and the Moravians helped lay a foundation for the great mission move that followed in the 18th century with men like William Carey.

The Hernhut community was modeled and duplicated near and far while small renewal groups broke out all across Europe.

 

•••

Does this inspire you at all???  It has definitely impacted me.  Last year I  got caught up in the “quarreling” of doctrine and theology and nothing was accomplished.  I have seen how ugly and immature it can get.  The end result of being in it and watching it from a distance caused me to realize that I need to be in His Word, prayer, and fellowship.

The Moravians were not perfect (who is but Christ) but I admire Count Zinzendorf for his bold leadership and convictions that lead him to find the good and common ground that each member had.  I personally think the Body of Christ needs to come back to this reality.  There are even more denominations and church splits in this day and age than ever before, let’s face it we probably will never fully agree on everything! So let us move forward in our love for Christ and our love for one another…isn’t that what He called us too?

I am hungry for this type of outpouring on the Church again.  I do not believe that the outpouring of Holy Spirit was a one time thing, I do believe that He wants to pour out His Spirit at an even greater measure today!  We saw it in the book of Acts and you can see it displayed through this Moravian Move and with other historical revivals.  The believers started in fellowship and prayer and the result was a great outpouring which lead to even greater prayer and fellowship PLUS souls saved for Christ!!!

What are your thoughts?

 

 

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