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WHY SO MANY LOCAL CHURCHES RESEMBLE NAZARETH

THE LOCAL CHURCH & ITS MINISTRY GIFTS


Missionary David Hogan, who moves in a miracle anointing, asked the pastor of one of his supporting churches to take a sabbatical, while David would oversee the church and minister to the saints. Miracles broke out and the church doubled and tripled in size. This is what can happen when pastors yield and defer to other gifts. But that doesn’t happen very often. Why? Because most pastors, although having a natural disposition and grace to protect the sheep, micromanage them.


The local church needs miracles to strengthen and encourage the sheep. Something happens when saints witness the miracle power of God in manifestation. They become valiant and wax bolder in their faith. Many local churches are stagnant due to a lack of genuine Holy Spirit manifestations.


NAZARETH


My wife and I have never been fully embraced by our local home church. Over the course of 40 years of ministry we’ve belonged to several local churches. Honestly, we’ve never quite fit in. Why? Well, I can tell you it’s not because we are rebels or lone mavericks, or that we seek honor instead of service. It’s because we are simply a square peg that doesn’t seem to fit in a round hole. It’s interesting how that works. The local communities we’ve been a part of have always been our Nazareth.


While being embraced and fully received by many other churches, we’ve never been fully supported by our own home church. Even some of our pastor friends have asked, “What is wrong with that leadership?” “Can’t they see how much you could benefit their body?”


This testimony is nearly identical and equally applies with other ministry gifts. I have a friend who is a street evangelist whom other pastors dream of having on their team, but his own church despises him. That is such a crime to me! And sadly, that local leadership will have to answer for that.


MATURE SEASONED GIFTS DESERVE BETTER


At our age, we are not looking to build our own ministry. It is already built. We are looking to help build the ministry of others. We are looking to help build the saints. We are not young upstarts looking for a platform and a microphone. We are looking to do what we’ve always done; to make disciples. We’ve always loved the local church and its families. We love new converts. We love the older faithful saints. My wife and I are fathers and mothers in the faith, not young ministers looking to make a name for themselves.


Local churches should be the greatest and strongest supporters of their ministry gifts and their families. There are simply to many local leaders full of jealousy and insecurities. Others are control freaks. The church doesn’t belong to you. It belongs to Jesus. Why not allow Him to move in your community? Who suffers most when you stifle other seasoned mature ministries within your ranks? Is it not the people?


What would’ve happened to Nazareth if Jesus had not been so confined there? How many more would’ve received their healing and miracle? How many more families would’ve followed Jesus there? Instead, familiarity bred contempt in Nazareth.


I know many others out there that can identify with this situation. We’ve lived off the gospel for 40 years. We have nothing to prove. Our fruit speaks for itself. When proven ministry gifts and their families are not well received it becomes a burden to that family. It can be defeating for them and drain them spiritually. They are honored out on the road in other churches, and yet despised and dishonored in their own sheepfold. It can even affect their finances in a very discouraging way.


Now what happens when that situation is reversed? When any local church starts really honoring and embracing their resident ministry gifts? When they do so, they are honoring and embracing the One who sent them. The rich blessing of the Lord will abide in the congregation who honors their own ministry gifts. The anointing will increase. Many more saints will be helped, blessed, and encouraged.


Who is really building your church?


Antioch is our best Scriptural example of ministry gifts working together in a local church. These 5 men seem to be the ruling elders in a community (If you’re interested in expanding your understanding of this topic, you can look up this book, Divine Order & The Glory of the Local Church).


(Acts 13:1-3)


Bert Farias' books are forerunners to personal holiness, the move of God and the return of the Lord. They also combat the departure from the faith and the turning away from the truth we are seeing in our day. His recent five-book bundle, written under a fresh anointing, is a forerunner of what the Lord doing in His Church today. His newest release, Turning Your Trials Into Gold, is a powerful testimony of how God raised up Bert and his wife Carolyn from a sick bed and near death.


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