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Archive for July, 2011

“And after him was Eleazar the son of Dodo, the Ahohite, who was one of the three mighties. He was with David at Pasdammim, and there the Philistines were gathered together to battle, where was a parcel of ground full of barley; and the people fled from before the Philistines.

And they set themselves in the midst of that parcel, and delivered it, and slew the Philistines; and the LORD saved them by a great deliverance.” (1Ch 11:12-14)

There comes a time in your Christian life when you have had enough of good intentions, fair speeches, and repetitive platitudes. There comes a time when you are ready to plant your feet on solid ground and are ready to fight. No more talk; it is time to DO something.

I don’t believe that David and his two companions honestly thought they were going to live through this battle. After all, the enemy was so fearsome that the entire army of Israel ran in terror. It says in 2 Samuel 23 that they only came back after it was safe. This was way past what David faced with Goliath.

But while the situation had changed, the principles had not. They gripped their swords and drew a line in the ground beyond which they would not move.

Three guys standing against incredibly overwhelming odds … no let me take that back. No bookie in Las Vegas would even give you that much of a spread – there were NO odds. Not a chance. Adios, amigo!

But there comes a time when you have had enough talk. Come Hell or high water; win, lose, or draw, there comes a time when you are ready to stand and fight for the honor of God. No, I don’t believe they thought they would win – they just didn’t care. This was not their battle; it was the Lord’s. It was not up to the circumstances, the odds, or the facts – it was up to God Almighty. It didn’t matter what the outcome would be; what mattered was that they stood.

I have some friends like that, who yell out into the face of the enemy, “To Hell with the devil! Damn the torpedoes! I will not back down, I will not back up, I will not compromise, and I will not run!” God often puts his servants in situations like that to give them the opportunity to trust Him no matter what. Like Jonathon scrambling up the rocks to take on the enemy, they hang onto the promise that “there is no restraint to the LORD to save by many or by few.”

Champions are forged in times of utter desperation and sharpened by absolute reliance upon the salvation of God. There are times when the only thing that is sure is the Rock upon which you stand.  Those are the times of victory.

True Holy Ghost revivals are birthed out of the same womb.  There has to be a time when the Church has had enough of “church as usual”, enough of that sing-song Pollyanna Gospel our churches are so full of. Enough of the worn-out platitudes of peace, love, blessings, and how much Jesus loves us. When will the Church fall under the conviction of the Holy Spirit to repent of their Laodicean ways, their preponderance of worldly flash and glitter, and seek to the old paths, look to the old ways of old-fashioned, broken repentance at the altar for God to forgive us for having “church” instead of what He called us to?

When we reach that point, we will then have the courage to stand in that field of barley.

Brother Dale
www.RevivalFire.org

Subscribe: www.revivalfire.org/subscribe.htm

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“And after him was Eleazar the son of Dodo, the Ahohite, who was one of the three mighties. He was with David at Pasdammim, and there the Philistines were gathered together to battle, where was a parcel of ground full of barley; and the people fled from before the Philistines.

And they set themselves in the midst of that parcel, and delivered it, and slew the Philistines; and the LORD saved them by a great deliverance.” (1Ch 11:12-14)

There comes a time in your Christian life when you have had enough of good intentions, fair speeches, and repetitive platitudes. There comes a time when you are ready to plant your feet on solid ground and are ready to fight. No more talk; it is time to DO something.

I don’t believe that David and his two companions honestly thought they were going to live through this battle. After all, the enemy was so fearsome that the entire army of Israel ran in terror. It says in 2 Samuel 23 that they only came back after it was safe. This was way past what David faced with Goliath.

But while the situation had changed, the principles had not. They gripped their swords and drew a line in the ground beyond which they would not move.

Three guys standing against incredibly overwhelming odds … no let me take that back. No bookie in Las Vegas would even give you that much of a spread – there were NO odds. Not a chance. Adios, amigo!

But there comes a time when you have had enough talk. Come Hell or high water; win, lose, or draw, there comes a time when you are ready to stand and fight for the honor of God. No, I don’t believe they thought they would win – they just didn’t care. This was not their battle; it was the Lord’s. It was not up to the circumstances, the odds, or the facts – it was up to God Almighty. It didn’t matter what the outcome would be; what mattered was that they stood.

I have some friends like that, who yell out into the face of the enemy, “To Hell with the devil! Damn the torpedoes! I will not back down, I will not back up, I will not compromise, and I will not run!” God often puts his servants in situations like that to give them the opportunity to trust Him no matter what. Like Jonathon scrambling up the rocks to take on the enemy, they hang onto the promise that “there is no restraint to the LORD to save by many or by few.”

Champions are forged in times of utter desperation and sharpened by absolute reliance upon the salvation of God. There are times when the only thing that is sure is the Rock upon which you stand.  Those are the times of victory.

True Holy Ghost revivals are birthed out of the same womb.  There has to be a time when the Church has had enough of “church as usual”, enough of that sing-song Pollyanna Gospel our churches are so full of. Enough of the worn-out platitudes of peace, love, blessings, and how much Jesus loves us. When will the Church fall under the conviction of the Holy Spirit to repent of their Laodicean ways, their preponderance of worldly flash and glitter, and seek to the old paths, look to the old ways of old-fashioned, broken repentance at the altar for God to forgive us for having “church” instead of what He called us to?

When we reach that point, we will then have the courage to stand in that field of barley.

Brother Dale
www.RevivalFire.org

Subscribe: www.revivalfire.org/subscribe.htm

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Leaving Burundi

I am writing this to my friends and supporters to update you on what has been happening on this latest trip to Africa.  This has been, by far, the most difficult campaign I’ve had, not only in the intensity of the schedule but in the continuing barrage of attacks by the devil, but this trip has also offered the most hope and may very well be the most important one of all.

We started in Rwanda for a week or so and preached at several churches there, both small and large. We immediately noticed that there was a different feel to things there. While they were hungry for the message, it’s as if there was a closed door down at the bottom of their hearts that was locked shut. I believe it is because the enormous emotional and spiritual wounds from the Genocide.  The depth of the horror is incalculable to us in the West and has caused such deep pain that they have shut up the deeper recesses of their hearts.  They need revival desperately.

I was able to reach several churches through 3-day seminars, regular church services to whole congregations, and some daytime luncheon services that are pretty common out here. Before I left, I was invited to preach on the radio on a couple of occasions, one of which was Radio Rwanda that went out to the whole country.  I will be back in Rwanda next week to spend 3 more days with another church, this time in one of the other cities.

We flew to Burundi a few weeks ago and have been on a pressing schedule since we arrived, sometimes preaching at two different churches a day.  I have spoken to so many places and said so many things to so many people that I don’t know what I’ve said to whom. Sometimes I feel like a robot – get up, go to church, bring the message, back to the hotel, back to church, bring the message again, back to the hotel, back to church, bring the message again… After a while, you begin to feel like you are out of steam and I have to cry out to God for a renewal of passion and feeling. I will have preached at well over 100 services by the time I am done, and that wears you out after a while.

In the meantime, we have had things stolen, including all the PA equipment and parts off the car. In Uganda, the police arrested the wife of my associate, Pastor Noah, and threw her and her baby girl into jail – for no reason!  All a mistake and finally resolved, but you can imagine the effect it has had on us while we are out here in another country trying to focus on the mission.  Back home, anything that can break will break, and a lot of things that can not break will break anyway. If it can go wrong, it will.  Now mind you, all this starts the day I purchase the airplane tickets and continues until I get home.  I’m sorry, but this is NOT coincidence.

But it is the emotional toll that is the hardest. I liken it to being under a mental and emotional Cyber attack.  You really can’t pinpoint what it is or where it is coming from, but there is a nebulous cloud of murky oppression that you have to trudge through. It is difficult to explain to someone who has not experienced it, but suffice it to say that it is like slogging through mud.  While I am dedicated to the mission and the vision, I feel spent and uninspired and can’t wait to get home.

The results, however, have been incredible.  Here in Burundi where I had so much trouble last year, it is as if they have been waiting for me. I have been on national TV, preached at some of the biggest churches, shared the vision with the leaders of some of the big denominations, and given out hundreds of Bibles and booklets.  Even the President has gotten my books.  This message that I am bringing has been an answer to prayer for many of these churches … literally. They are desperate for a move of God and they instinctively know that it is not without a price.  They just don’t know what to do.  When I bring this message of the Four Steps to Revival, it is as if someone threw open the curtains to flood the room with sunshine.  It literally shatters the glass ceiling over their faith.  They get it! They really get it!  And they are jumping-up-and-down in excitement because now they know that revival – true revival, not the Prosperity Revival they hear on American TV – is within their grasp.  It has now become the substance of things hoped for. Revival is on the way.

There have not been any reportable miracles that I know of on this trip like there was on the last trip.  But then, I am not here to do miracles; I am here to deliver a message.  After working so hard for the last 8 years, I am finally seeing things take root and begin to push up out of the ground. I can see the vision coming to focus in their eyes, and the answer cannot be far behind.

There are some who feel they shouldn’t send their donations outside of America.  I disagree.  Besides the pointed message in Esther of the reliance between the oppressed church of Mordecai and the blessed church of Esther, there is another dynamic at work that we need to be aware of.  Revival will not come to America until the fallow ground has been broken up.  We are too comfortable, and, like the Church of Laodicea, we don’t even realize how blind, poor, and miserable we really are.  No matter how much we repeat about the Great Awakening that is coming, it will not come without a deep, penetrating repentance. We want revival, but we want a revival of convenience without blood, without tears, and without brokenness.  There is no such revival.

Just as the children of Israel were slaves for 400 years and got used to their slavery, so America has gotten used to the spiritual famine that has entered the Church. God had to raise up a Pharaoh who was deadly in his oppression to make the Israelites desperate enough to cry out to God. There are many other examples throughout the Bible, including the Babylonian captivity.  So also, I believe, will American have to be brought to a place of brokenness before we will be able to cry out to God in true broken-hearted desperation. Those are the cries God will hear.

Revival will not start in America. It will start in Africa. They are ripe for a move of God. They are dry, desperate, humble before God and open to hear His Word. True, they still have a ways to go, but they are so much closer than anywhere else.  Like a wildfire in a field of dry, parched wheat, once the fire starts here, it will explode.  And it will be so hot that we will feel the heat around the world.  I am just planting the seeds for that revival and am striking matches out in the wheat field.

We are about to see the Book of Joel fulfilled.

—————————

Brother Dale, www.RevivalFire.org

To subscribe: http://www.revivalfire.org/subscribe.htm

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“And John calling unto him two of his disciples sent them to Jesus, saying, Art thou he that should come? or look we for another?”
(Luke 7:19)

 

Just a few days ago, I was questioning my whole mission here. I suppose that happens in every Christian’s walk once in a while. You know that you have heard from God, you know that the vision that He has placed in your heart is as real as He is – you know all this – but still, there are those times when the reality of the vision seems far away and faded in the distance.

Last week, after ministering in Burundi, we drove for two hours up into the back country to minister to another church that was no bigger than a 20 x 20 room. There were twelve people there for services. Now, this is not new for me. I am well-known for going to the places where no one else will go – to the little people out in the tiny churches in the villages and in the Bush. But after a while, you begin to wonder if you are just spinning your wheels. Is this really of the Lord or are you just trying to make believe you have some great ministry in Africa? Are you really accomplishing anything out here, or are you simply wasting the finances that hard-working people have sacrificed to send you out here? And of course, that begs the next question, are you betraying those people who supported you by lying to them that you are accomplishing some great thing out here when you are really only spinning a yarn that will amount to nothing?

Can you hear the devil in the background?

Whenever I have hit a low place and cry out for God to send me encouragement, He has always sent it the very next day. Always. So as I was driving to the last of the meetings in this little town, I stared straight up into the sky and laid my heart out before God. “Is this real? Am I doing what You have sent me to do? Am I really laying the groundwork for the Great African Revival? Or am I just a legend in my own mind?”

Needless to say, as I approached the church, I could hear the rejoicing afar off. The place was packed! Inside was crammed with people, and outside they were leaning in through the windows. What a powerful service we had! Who knows what will come out this tiny church that is now set on fire? I am so sorry, Lord, that I even questioned what You were doing. This is how God does it.

But He was not done with me. Today was supposed to be my day off before we head out to the next village. It was supposed to be a day to rest, but that never happened. Before the day began, I was called to go to the TV station because they wanted me to broadcast this message of revival on TV. They gave me an entire hour on Christian TV to preach to all the churches in Burundi. By the time I got back to the hotel, I was told that one of the biggest bishops with over 60 churches here wanted to meet me. He had been told about this shattering message I have been bringing and he was desperate for revival – TRUE revival – to come to his church also. Stay where you are – he is coming to the hotel. Before he left, another bishop showed up at the hotel. He also had one of the largest churches in Burundi. The President and his wife attend his church. He also had heard of this message that I bring, and he wanted this to come to his church also.

This is the day after I asked God for some encouragement! Not bad for a day off.

My point? Yes, we will go through valleys where we are immersed in the shadow. Sometimes it is hard to see even a little distance in front of us. Not only do we not know where we are going, we don’t know if we are walking in a straight line or going around in circles. God is somewhere out there, but you can’t see Him anymore. The vision of where He is taking you has faded, and you wonder if it was ever real. But you keep on walking. Sometimes it is just to place one foot in front of the other with no idea of where you are heading … but you keep on walking.

But He is always right there. Yes, He spoke to you! Yes, He has commissioned you! Yes, you are who He said you are! Yes, the vision is real! And yes, He is planting the seeds of the greatest revival of all time! Did you doubt Him? Did He not call you to this battle? Is He not the God of Victory? And will He not fulfill His Word?

Yes, as it is written in Isaiah, “He has not said unto the seed of Jacob, Seek ye me in vain”. God has spoken; He will bring it to pass. Revival is coming. Keep walking!

“And the LORD shall utter his voice before his army: for his camp is very great: for he is strong that executeth his word: for the day of the LORD is great and very terrible; and who can abide it?”

(Joel 2:11)

 

 


 

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Its quiet this evening as I sit on the hotel balcony watching the sun go down. I love how evenings here have that soft way of settling in, almost like a soft cushion of twilight slowly settling down onto the city. For some reason, the evening comes fast at the Equator. As soon as the sun drops over the horizon, it gets dark. Not like in Texas where it stays light for hours after the sun is long gone. Not sure which I like better, but for now, this has an nice, easy feeling.

I miss my girls. Usually it takes at least 4 weeks before I start getting lonely, but this trip has been hard, so I’m not surprised that this has already become a “head fire” for me this early. I still have 6 weeks to go. Cindy was right; two months is too long. This is the silent price you pay that others don’t see.

But I can’t complain. Things have been exciting. The churches we were at in Rwanda and Bujumbura have been literally transformed. They will never be the same … ever. It’s as if the glass ceiling over their Christianity has been shattered and they are soaring into the air. Hundreds of souls have been saved in the past week. Not as many supernatural healings so far, but that will come. I don’t know why, but the healings seems to come after the mission is going for a while. Who knows? Maybe I have to get warmed up or something before the oil starts flowing. I have no idea how it works.

We’ve had enormous challenges and problems on this trip right from the start. Maybe that means this will be a great mission. The trouble always starts on the very day that I purchase the airline tickets – always. That’s one clue that there is a satanic intelligence behind all these insane things that happen, from software that crashes, machines that break, doorknobs that fall off, water heaters quit, things get broken, stolen, lost, etc. And of course, it always happens at exactly the worst time, as if all these things that have gone wrong are on a perfectly tuned satanic schedule.

This time, the trouble has extended to those who are working with me. This hasn’t happened before. Pastor Noah had his church broken into and all the audio equipment stolen that he was renting. Guess when that happened … yup, the day I bought the tickets. He has to pay a thousand dollars to the guy who rented him the equipment, but he doesn’t even have a hundred bucks to his name. Barry, a friend of mine who came out on the last mission and met Pastor Noah, has tried to take up a collection from friends whom he knows are Christians. He got some promises, but only half of them fulfilled. Three hundred bucks. That’s it.

Sometimes that stuff bugs you. I know it shouldn’t – people have their own agendas and things that they are into, and, let’s face it, they don’t know Noah from Adam. For that matter, most of them have no idea what we are accomplishing out here, and absolutely none of them have a grasp of the price we are paying to do it. It’s okay. We’ll cover it. God always comes through. It’s just that sometimes you just feel so alone.

The sun is almost gone over the horizon now, and it’ll be dark soon. The evening sounds are just starting to come out. Tomorrow, we will start all over in another city, but for now, I’m just soaking in the quiet of the evening as it settles in. It’s nice, and it’s quiet, but Lord, I sure miss my girls.

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One of the main issues that I stress in my Revival Meetings is the absolute necessity of winning souls. Revival is not about us feeling good or having real Spirit-filled services – it is first, last, and always about winning the lost. That is the true purpose for revival. Turning the focus of the Church off ourselves and onto saving others is the central theme of the Cross … and one of the hardest things to get Christians to realize in their apostate churches.

Winning souls is so vital that I will usually spend an entire service on this one issue alone. I start with the last thing that Jesus asked us to do before He left – go make disciples. I point out that we have done everything else but what He asked us to do.

The Church of Ephesus sounds like a great church … until you get to the part about leaving their first love, that love for telling others, and their subsequent demise if they don’t repent.

The True Vine tells us that if we do not bear good fruit, we will be broken off and thrown into the fire. Jesus says the same thing several times. What is that fruit? Souls. Where are the souls at your Altar Calls? Do you even HAVE Altar Calls? When’s the last time souls got saved at your church? Where is the fruit?

Just as marriage is a picture of our relationship with the Lord, so as a wife, it is a shame to be barren. In Genesis 30:1, Rachael cries out to her husband, “Give me children lest I die!” So should our barreness in bringing forth fruit drive us to desperation in crying out to God. But, as is so often the case, it is one thing to know you are barren; it is another thing to care enough to be desperate enough to have Rachael’s Cry.

There are several other passages I bring up, such as the parable of the Talents, the Great Banquet, the Great Commandment, several scriptures in Proverbs, and the whole issue of mercy. Mercy is not given to us freely – the devil has sold us that lie. Only mercy begets mercy, and judgment will be without mercy on those who have shown no mercy (James 2:13).

There are several others, but my favorite is the Good Samaritan. That parable was Jesus’ answer to the lawyer’s question, how do I escape Hell? How do I go to Heaven? A man was backsliding into sin — going from Jerusalem, the city of God, to Jericho, the city of sin. Wounded by the devil, he was dying in sin by the side of the road. Both the priest (clergy) and the Levite (church people) passed him by because they didn’t want to get dirty and bloody. The Good Samaritan, however, poured oil and wine into his wounds – in other words, he brought him to Salvation right there – and brought him to the church. Now which of these three is going to Heaven, and which are going to Hell? How else can you read this?

So does that mean your salvation is based on your having mercy on the lost? Jesus said many would say Lord, Lord in the Day of Judgment because of all the “stuff” they did. But did they pick up the cross and follow Jesus to Calvary to give their lives so that souls could be saved? Or did they just spend their lives having “church”. There are some real austere issues here about serving the Lord that cannot be ignored.

Another strong passage occurred to me the other day in the middle of a message I was giving. Revelations tells us repeatedly that he that “overcometh” will go to Heaven, not he that “tries”. And how do we overcome? By the Blood of the Lamb and the word of our testimony. In other words, by 1) the grace and power we have through His Blood to overcome sin AND 2) our testimony to the world of that saving grace. To testify means you have to open your mouth and tell the world about Jesus.

Oh, I know there are many who will say that they let their little light shine in a corner and it is their good life that is a testimony to others. Get serious. You are supposed to set your light out so everyone can see it, not put it under a bushel basket called Church. Testify is an active verb, not a passive one. Look it up. It means to witness, in one way, shape, or form, you have to be a witness.

The Great Commission you have been given as a Christian is to do as Jesus did – give your life so souls can be saved. It is the meaning of Charity. It is the very essence of the Cross. It is the heartbeat of God. It is why Jesus died. And it is essential if you want to receive the grace of God to pass over the Mercy Seat.

“Whoso stoppeth his ears at the cry of the poor, he also shall cry himself, but shall not be heard.” (Proverbs 21:13)


 

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What a cool name, Bujumbura, the capital of Burundi, a sister country right next to Rwanda.

We left Rwanda with a bang. As we were getting ready to leave, we were asked to speak at a luncheon service for a church with 10,000 members. Only a hundred or so were there, but the message excited them enough for them to ask us to come to a Sunday service when we come back in 3 weeks. I have to admit, the opportunity to bring this message to 10,000 people is intriguing.

Then as we left that church, we were asked to go on Radio Rwanda which reaches the whole country. Talk about open doors! We have known that something important must be going on because of all the spiritual fire we have been going through, so seeing these doors open up is no surprise. I think there is more going on in the spiritual realm for this country than we realize.

But for now, we are in Bujumbura at the New Visions church with Pastor Domitien. Right off the bat, thirty souls got saved in the morning service and another one this evening. Services were a jumping-up-and-down affair, filled with praises and the joy of the Holy Spirit. Nobody wanted to leave. And that is after 3 and 4 hours. Yeah, it was that good.

But again, just like Rwanda, you can feel something going on in the Spirit that is bigger than just some revival services in a little church. I don’t know what it is yet, but I can feel the churning. Things are not just being excited; they are being transformed. This is no longer “church as usual”, but a shattering of religious faith to light a torch of on-fire, soul-winning, Holy Ghost revival.

If you don’t know the difference between the two, then come to Africa. One dose of this kind of power and you will be forever cured of church as you’ve known it.

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