A Proven Plan for Spiritual Warfare

The_Battle1_1024x1024Do you have a strategy for spiritual warfare? When Satan comes against you by a direct frontal attack, by blindsiding you in a way you never anticipated, or by nipping at your heels like a dog to wear you down, what is your strategy for doing battle with him? What about when you face temptation or fear or there are conflicts in your marriage, family, or church? When wave after wave of grief pours over your soul, are you prepared for your enemies? Do you have a battle plan for times of sickness, confusion, and pressures beyond what you can bear, or when despair and hopelessness threaten to overwhelm your heart?

In the booklet, The Battle is the Lord’s! Praise, Worship, and Spiritual Warfare, Bill Mills shares a strategy for spiritual warfare that God lays out for us in His Word. It’s a strategy that King David practiced day after day, and one that the Lord has graciously taught Bill in the battles of his own life.

Buy The Battle is the Lord’s! Praise, Worship, and Spiritual Warfare in booklet or eBook form and learn about the Bible’s proven plan for spiritual warfare.

Raising Leaders in Your Church – Event with The Gospel Coalition Hawaii

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Bill Mills will be speaking at a special event with The Gospel Coalition Hawaii Chapter on November 6th, 2014 on how we can disciple leaders in our churches for maximum kingdom impact.

Bill-Mills

Bill Mills, the founder of Leadership Resources International, has been developing leaders in the global church for over thirty years and continues to raise up leaders through the Training National Trainers program (worldwide) and Fellowship of the Word Program (US).

Here is a description of Bill’s workshop:

As workers on the “front line” of ministry, we seek to develop leaders who will serve Christ with every passion and resource of their lives. We face serious competition and terrible enemies in this great battle, but we have great models to follow! We serve a God who transformed people who had given their affections away, and their worship to lesser gods. The Lord Jesus prepared a small group of men and women who turned the whole world upside down.

These are some of the questions Bill will answer:

  • How can I identify and equip the next generation of leaders who can impact the nations for the kingdom?
  • How can I keep from losing heart in the face of impossible expectations, a heavy workload, and my own inadequacy?
  • How can I bring the Scriptures to my people so that their hearts are captured for Christ and His Kingdom?
  • How can I tear down the political structures that tend to develop on my staff and boards?

For more information, visit The Gospel Coalition Hawaii’s site.

God Doesn’t Run on “Flex Time” – A Devotional

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The following devotional was written by our Church Partnership Coordinator Tom Newton. If you or your church are interested in strengthening the global church for biblical ministry by sponsoring pastoral training, read more about becoming an Anchor Church.

Have you ever heard of the popular business concept known as “Flex Time”?

I recall that large, white-collar corporations introduced this flex time concept back in the early nineteen eighties to keep their troops in the trenches happy at their jobs. Now thousands of small business concerns may be utilizing flex time as well. Here’s the thinking behind flex time and this is how it works.

4360987794_3e40530450_oThe average white collar worker is usually required to work eight hours a day at their job. Years back, as people began the great exodus to live in the suburbs, getting to work on time became more of a problem because of expressway traffic or slow train schedules. But big corporations said, “If we have enough people to take care of business at the start or at the end of the work day, we can allow our people to come to work and flex their own starting times as long as they stay consistent.” If your company’s hours were normally from 8:30 AM to 5:00 PM, the company would say business starting hours would be from 7:45 AM to 9:00 AM. Then the end of the day would be from 4:45 PM to 6:00 PM.

This was really a ‘win-win’ situation for the company and its employees as its doors would be open longer and the employees would be a lot happier in the process. But someone had to be there to meet customers, answer the phones, take orders, process papers, etc. You could pick your own starting time but it had to be consistent every day. You couldn’t come in to work one day say at 7:45 AM and then the next day at 8:30 AM. And neither were you to be late. Oh no! Flexing your starting time allowed you plenty of time to get to work at your pace, train schedule or no train schedule. Arrive earlier or leave later, but be on time.

Would you believe that some people still abused the starting time? Now mind you, flex time was an appointment you were expected to keep. “The bus was late!” “I accidentally overslept!” “Traffic was jammed!” “I just double parked and ran in to get a cup of coffee and when I came out the cop was giving me a ticket!” To be honest, between you and me, anyone who abuses flex time has got a real problem. That person is probably chronically late for many occasions, not just in getting to work.

Does God operate on “flex time?”

Now you may be on flex time at your place of business but when it comes time for you to enter eternity, God does not operate on the business principle of flex time. Hebrews 9:27 says, “…It is appointed for men to die once and after this comes judgment.”  Does that sound like flex time to you? It sure doesn’t sound like flex time to me! I realize that you didn’t have the option to pick the time when you were born either in spite of your parent’s best intentions. But stepping into eternity will be an appointment we all have to keep and we will all be on time for it. No one person will be late for that event. After all, we only have so many days on earth.

David told us this in Psalm 139:16 where he said, “Thine eyes (meaning God’s) have seen my unformed substance; and in Thy book they were written, the days that were ordained for me, when as yet there was not one of them.”  So God knows when you and I are going to be leaving earth for eternity.

When God calls a person into eternity, that individual won’t be able to say, “Later,” or “Let’s make this more convenient at another time.” Or, “Let me go and do this first.” Some people might hope that they could say, “Why don’t You come back another day when I’m not so busy.” But you and I move according to God’s time clock, not our time clock. We won’t be early nor will we be late. You may go through life always a minute or two late for various functions, but your departure from earth will be right on the button.

A believer knows that his departure date is approaching, but also knows that when it arrives he will go right into God’s Holy presence–certainly not a bad deal when you really think about it. But to the person who is not in Christ, in other words, not one who has given his heart to the Lord, then all this may sound a bit ominous. Dreadful, as the Bible puts it. “Judgment is coming so hold on.”

If you’ve never given your heart to Christ to take away your sins, don’t “flex” away the opportunity. Don’t abuse it and put it off. Don’t be late for this to take place. Otherwise you will be regretting for all eternity that you were late in making your decision when you had the opportunity on earth and you didn’t do it. As the Scripture tells us, “Now is the day of salvation . . ” (2 Corinthians 6:2). Not tomorrow because tomorrow may be too late for you.

When flex time became available at my former employment, I jumped at the chance. My hours were 8:15 AM to 4:45 PM. Rarely, I mean rarely, was I ever late, if ever. My homebound trip from was ideal if I could make the express train because it sailed along the tracks like a silver bullet. I still had to walk just over a mile to get to the train station. But the remaining trains after that express were either semi-locals or locals. I hated to miss that express #5:11. But if for some reason I couldn’t exit from work at 4:45 PM, the result was I waved good-bye to the last car of that express (more times than I care to remember!). Just missing that train by mere seconds, even inches as I watched the car doors close, resulted in a great deal of lost time and an upset attitude.

Remember the old company slogan that said, “You can be sure, if it’s WESTINGHOUSE”? Well, you can be sure you will be on time for eternity. True, you can’t flex that time away.

But today you can be sure of your destination when the time does arrive. The company you work for may extend flexible hours to its employees, but Heaven operates on a far different principle.

You know that your day to leave all this is already set. All you have to do is to give your life to Christ. Then peace with Jesus Christ and Heaven will a shoo-in. No flex time! Deal? Deal!

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Tom Newton
Church Partnership Coordinator
Contact Tom for more information about becoming an Anchor Church

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Some Encouragement for Finding God’s Will

For some Christians, the thought of finding God’s will for their lives is more of a mystical fantasy than an everyday reality. Should this be the case? In God’s Will: Found Out or Found in? Bill Mills shares the following encouragement on finding God’s will:

Gods-Will-Book-What-does-the-Bible-say-about-the-Will-of-God-192x300If finding God’s will for us depended on our ability to figure it out, we would miss it again and again. Only when our Father is standing right behind us every moment, in every situation, whispering in our ears, “This is the way; walk in it,” will we be able to follow His leading. What a joy it is to know that the pressure is not on us to figure out what God wants us to do! What freedom we find in listening for the voice of our Shepherd and then following Him into the fullness of His glorious will! If we depend on ourselves, we will never get there, but if we seek Him with holiness and sincerity, there is not a chance in the world that we will ever miss anything God has planned for us.

–Bill Mills in God’s Will: Found Out or Found in? Buy in our store or on Amazon.

The Story of the Cursing Pastor!

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Dear Friends and Partners,

This morning I heard a sad, yet precious story here in Papua New Guinea (PNG), one of the most remote and poorest countries in the world…a place and a people that God has called us to serve.

preslyPastor Presly told me and another trainer about the Kol, a mountain-dwelling people, two very long days away. Presly walks there, arising at 4am on the first day, and then at 4am the 2nd day. And ­these aren’t lovely strolls in a garden…he’s clambering up and down mountains paths and fording rivers, trekking each day until the daylight is gone.

Why? After all, we’re not paying Presly to do this. Why would Presly risk his life to take the TNT (Training National Trainers) training to these primitive, nomadic people? Because there is a famine for the Word of God throughout PNG.

Presly invited a local Kol pastor to attend the TNT teaching. Sadly, the people of his church are Christian in name only. Sunday they go to church and then Monday they offer food to their ancestors so that their dead relatives will bless them with money.

Presly urged these Kol leaders, “Teach the Word. Stay on the line of God’s Word when you preach…don’t add to God’s Word, and don’t subtract from it”.

As the training week went on, this same pastor got more agitated. Twice he cursed out loud, angry that his denomination had never taught him to teach the Bible. “Please, please” he cried out, “give me the TNT curriculum so I can teach others”.

Tomorrow, I’ll have the privilege of handing Presly a certificate celebrating his TNT graduation, after 4 years of diligent study and multiplication. The Kol people will be rejoicing with us!

Thank you for embracing our mission to equip and encourage pastors to teach God’s Word with God’s heart. Thank you for equipping pastors who have no access to biblical training.

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Celebrating the grace of God in Papua New Guinea,

Craig Parro,

PS: Presly can’t give this local pastor the TNT curriculum….we don’t have it translated into a language that he can understand. Would you please consider a generous gift today to help us get our teaching materials into more languages? Donate to Leadership Resources.

Hear Pastor Presly tell his story:

 

TNT Results: Learning Bible-Centered Discipleship in the Philippines

IMG_8984Not all job-related promotions are welcome.

Jocel, a Filipino youth minister got an unexpected (and unwelcome) promotion when the Senior Pastor at his church left. Jocel knew he was not ready for the position thrust upon him–especially after his only mentor left.

How would Jocel, a young and fairly-inexperienced pastor make this work?

Thankfully, a short time later God provided Jocel two more-experienced pastors, Larry John and Neil, who saw Jocel’s need and took him under their wing to mentor him.

Soon after, an exciting opportunity fell onto the three pastor’s laps: they were invited by a friend to fellowship around the Word and deepen their skills in the Scriptures through the Training National Trainers program. What an amazing opportunity for Jocel to grow in Word-ministry alongside his mentors!

Here is what Jocel said after our beginning our training:

Slowly, I’m getting a handle on the idea of expository preaching. I continue to learn that text is king. I keep working at preaching the text and not my own ideas. In the past, I thought that discipling people is telling them what I have learned. Now I see that discipling is to teach/preach the Word to people. It is the Word that will bring transformation.
TNT has been a catalyst for the growth of more-experienced pastors as well. Here’s what Pastor Neil said after his training in 2 Timothy:

Last May, we learned that we as pastors must have the heart of God, not just the skill and methodology, but God’s heart which brings transformation. Now in 2 Timothy, we see that Paul is concerned to pass on his own heart to other people.

IMG_9039Pastors Neil and Larry John have taken Paul’s concern to multiply discipleship seriously–and not just with Jocel. This dynamic duo, along with their close friend Pastor Lito, have resonated with the heart of God for multiplying ministry and have already started several new TNT locations–and have 2 or 3 more groups in the works!

Jocel has since moved and began ministering in a new part of the country to reestablish the church there and is excited to have two new mentors and TNT to begin this new ministry on the solid footing of biblical partnership and biblical teaching.

Praise God for His work in the Philippines!

5 Themes Found in Exodus and the New Testament

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Leadership Resources training staff recently spent time together studying the book of Exodus. Below are some brief notes about how many Exodus themes fit into the whole of the Bible.

The book of Exodus tells the epic story of God delivering Israel out of slavery in Egypt, leading them in the desert, giving the law at Mt. Sinai, and records the construction of the tabernacle.

There are many great themes and doctrines taught through Exodus and many areas for application for us 3,000 years later after the coming of the anticipated Messiah. Jesus said in John 5:39-40 that all Scripture points to himself–and Exodus is no different.

Five themes that are found in Exodus and the New Testament:

1. There is but one God, the Creator who is sovereign and powerful.

All the world belongs to him and should know him and worship him alone. He is utterly worthy and deserving of praise and worship. No other master/idol will bring freedom. Exodus begins with a tyrannical master enslaving humanity and ends with service of the Lord that is perfect freedom.

The book of Romans describes unbelievers as “slaves to sin” (Romans 6:20). Through faith in Jesus and his death and resurrection, we are set free from sin and live for righteousness and walk in newness of life.

2. Knowing and making known.

“God also said to Moses, “Say this to the people of Israel, ‘The Lord, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you.’ This is my name forever, and thus I am to be remembered throughout all generations.”” Exodus 3:15

God wants to know Israel and make Himself known to the world. (See how often these ideas are mentioned in Exodus: 3:6-15, 5:2, 6:2-8, 7:17, 8:10, 22, 9:14, 29, 10:2, 11:7, 14:4, 18, 16:6-12, 18:11, 29:46, 33:12-17.)

God’s wants to be known by all people. God reveals himself progressively as the book unfolds as the God who remembers, who rules, rescues, judges, speaks, provides, and dwells among his people. By the time of Jesus, this dwelling is even more profound and clear as Christ:

3. The glory of God is revealed and his glory (weightiness/worth) is his character.

God is compassionate, gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, forgiving and yet just.  He is holy.  He is jealous.  Moses and Israel beheld his glory as God revealed his character and ways to them.  We have beheld his glory even more clearly than they in the Lord Jesus Christ who dwelt among us full of grace (John 1:14).

Read Exodus for an encounter with the living God! The majestic character of God is revealed – mercy, justice, holiness, love, glory, faithfulness. We enter into the journey/pilgrimage of faith with all believers – rescued from slavery, carried by God, instructed by God and brought to worship and service of God.

4. God’s grace always proceeds law. 

God rescues, delivers, and THEN gives shape to the relationship by outlining the way his saved people ought live.  The law was never given as means to gain blessing and salvation from God. Similarly in the NT Jesus calls a people to himself (a new Israel) and then gives them instruction for life in the Kingdom (so Matt 4:12-22 before Matt 5-8 and the Sermon on the Mount, see also Ephesians 2:1-10, Titus 2:11-14, 3:1-7).

5. Like Israel we are saved and freed for a purpose. 

Freedom is not an end in itself.  We are freed to serve and for God’s glory. Exodus 19:3-6 is a key text in the Bible: Israel was chosen as holy and special people out of all nations for the sake of the nations. They were to be holy and priestly manifesting God to the world. We still are a chosen people with the same purpose (1 Peter 2, Titus 2).

The grace of God leads to godliness leads to good works while we wait for glory!

“For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men. It teaches us to say ‘No’ to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, while we wait for the blessed hope—the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good.” Titus 2:11-14

Related Post: Sermon Series on the Book of Exodus

     

    Launching Pastoral Training Movements Worldwide

     

    The mission of Leadership Resources is to launch pastoral training movements worldwide. This blog shares articles, resources, and updates from staff of God’s work around the world through our training. If you’re new to our blog, start here.

     


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