At some point, we must offend.

There are reasons the original 12 were so bold.  There are reasons they preached letting the chips fall where they may.  They understood that at some point, they must offend.  They disregarded their personal safety—and for good reasons.  Those reasons escape today’s motivational-speaker-preachers who live not to offend.  They just don’t get it.

At some point, we must offend

By Mario Murillo

There are reasons the original 12 were so bold.  There are reasons they preached letting the chips fall where they may.  They understood that at some point, they must offend.  They disregarded their personal safety—and for good reasons.  Those reasons escape today’s motivational-speaker-preachers who live not to offend.  They just don’t get it.  Here is how A.W. Tozer described the true preacher, “they serve God and mankind from motives too high to be understood by the rank and file of religious retainers who today shuttle in and out of the sanctuary.”

Before some lazy reader jumps to a wrong conclusion let me say—we are not to try to offend.  We are not to give offense.  My point is that leaving truth out to avoid offending is a disaster—when it is wildly successful, it is an even greater disaster.  Spurgeon said, “It is a very ill omen to hear a wicked world clap its hands and shout ‘Well done’ to a Christian man.”

It is a great evil when congregations reward you, yea enrich you, and raise you to superstar status because you keep God’s rightful demands off them.

When you take aim at a vastly successful far-flung enterprise, you are easily rejected because how can you deny its effectiveness?  How can you keep from sounding petty and jealous?

The reason it is hard to see why it is valid to criticize attraction churches is because we don’t know what might have been.  We don’t know how America would look like today had we obeyed the Holy Spirit instead of the laws of marketing.

They did not offend and they also did not stop the moral avalanche.  On their watch, we lost marriage—we lost millions of unborn—we lost so much that we cannot even recognize America.  And most ironically, after all the efforts to avoid offending, the public hates the church more than ever.

Here are the reasons we must offend:

Preaching the entire Gospel releases power. 1 Corinthians 1:18 “For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.”

Romans 1: 16 “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes…”

Why is the phrase power of God in two verses that deal with the offense of the Gospel?  Why would Paul even use the qualifier “I am not ashamed?”  Because, as a top-flight intellectual, he was keenly aware of the parts of the Gospel that tweak the human brain, and offend “proper society.”  He welcomes the tweak because it releases great power.

The American Church has a day of reckoning with American culture.  The clash is inevitable because our society has become an open sewer, a bastion of banality where madness has the microphone.  We have the one message that should not be hidden or redacted.

When the suffering soul tastes peace that passes understanding, and joy unspeakable—when marriages are healed—when suicidal teenagers are filled with a will to live—when the lame walk, the blind see, cancers vanish and addictions break in one-step instead of 12, then the Cross, the Blood, and repentance become—what they truly are: the best thing humanity has ever heard.   We must offend in order to heal.

Yes, you’re right. Revival is now impossible

 

Yes, revival is now impossible.  Everything thing the pessimistic Christians say is true. They are right about our national morals, division and the deadness of the church  but they are forgetting one thing about revival…

Revival struck London through John Wesley when it was impossible.   One out every seven houses in London was a house of prostitution.  More people were attending seances than church.  Nearly 100,000 children lived like animals.  The London times had not mentioned Christmas for decades…not even once.

The Methodist revival under Wesley turned England into the world’s missionary leader.

Revival struck Kentucky when it was unthinkable.  This was the most lawless state in the union.  There was no police.  Every criminal on the run headed for Kentucky.  Murder, rape, and alcoholism were pandemic.  Revival flipped Kentucky so violently that it became the most zealously Christian state in America.

The early twentieth century was a far more skeptical era than today.  The blush of Darwinism and Marxism was so feverish that it was a foregone conclusion that Christianity would go away altogether. Scientists declared the age of reason and solemnly assured us that religion would be gone by the 1920s.

raw bravery

Imagine in that atmosphere, if you were to have said in 1906, “a one eyed black man is going to rent a dingy horse livery on Azusa Street in downtown Los Angeles and start a movement that will engulf nearly 600 million people worldwide.”  

The point is that revivals are impossible…and when it looks totally impossible they happen.

You should also know what the church was preaching in those darkest moments before awakenings began.  Pulpits were filled with pessimists who instead of rebuking the despair joined in the chorus.  They declared the day of revival to be over!  Even that did not stop God.

How is it that revival can strike without warning in the most unpromising times and grow in the hardest soil?  The answer is that when darkness is intense we tend look at the wrong indicators.  It’s not that there are no warnings of revival it is simply that we do not know them when we see them because fear is so loud.

Look at today.  Do you see any signs of revival?  Most would say absolutely not.  They would say all of the same things that people have said before every outpouring of God.   The times are too evil.

That is the argument today.  We legalized gay marriage, drugs and we toy with Islam.  Our leaders are loons that are finding the best ways to drive us into extinction.  Churches are closing and 1,000 ministers are leaving the ministry every month.  You know the rest because you have heard a hundred times.

Atheists are boasting that the whole world in general is becoming secular and anti-supernatural.  The facts are just the opposite.  It is a very religious world, far more religious than it was 50 years ago.

Consider these statistics from sociologist Rodney Stark:

— 81 percent claim to belong to an organized religious faith, and most of the rest report engaging in religious activities such as prayer or making offerings to the gods in various “folk religion” temples.

— 74 percent say religion is an important part of their daily lives.

— 50 percent report they have attended a place of worship or religious service in the past seven days.

-In very few nations do as many as five percent claim to be atheists, and only in China, Vietnam, and South Korea do they exceed 20 percent.

-Furthermore, in every nook and cranny left by organized faiths, all manner of unconventional spiritual and mystical practices are booming. There are more occult healers than medical doctors in Russia, 38 percent of the French believe in astrology, 35 percent of the Swiss agree that “some fortune tellers really can foresee the future,” and nearly everyone in Japan is careful to have their new car blessed by a Shinto priest.

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To be sure, little of this is Christian but it is undeniable that the waters of supernatural hunger are being stirred worldwide.

Another sign is the evil of people itself.   For example, Saul of Tarsus was at the peak of his terrorism when he was violently converted. What no one but God knew was the growing desperation inside of this soon to be Paul the Apostle.   Societies are often at their worst right before revival.

What we do not want to do is miss revival when it hits!

Dark times can absorb our faith in the power of God.  Many believers find themselves in a condition that is truly worse than they ever imagined.  Pangs of fear grip men of God who were once lions in the pulpit.  We invent doctrines that fit our disappointment.  We build ministries based on our lowered expectations.

You need a healthy respect for the power of dark times to rob us of faith.  It has happened to the best of us.

500 people saw Jesus Christ ascend into the clouds.  Think about that.  In the face of such absolute proof that Jesus was the Son of God, how could they ever doubt?

As He ascended he told them to wait in Jerusalem for the promise of the Holy Spirit.  Surely they would wait…right?  Astonishingly, only 120 were still waiting in the upper room on the Day of Pentecost.  How is it possible in the face of so great an assurance that they would falter and abandon their posts?

Their world was filled with sudden terror from a wicked king, oppression from religious leaders, and tyranny from the Roman occupiers.  Their daily grind absorbed their zeal for the promises of God.

Do not be like the 380 people who missed one of the greatest moments in history.  Here are two things that you need to confess and say to your spirit so that you will not leave the upper room.

  1. Either it was always true or it was never true. Times do not alter truth. A lack of money does not change God’s word about prosperity.  Sickness does not nullify the fact of God’s healing power.  The evil of men does not overrule the supremacy of Christ.   If God promised you something, these dark times cannot stop their fulfillment.
  2. This will be like one of them. 1 Samuel 17: 4 But David said to Saul, “Your servant used to keep his father’s sheep, and when a lion or a bear came and took a lamb out of the flock, 35 I went out after it and struck it, and delivered the lamb from its mouth; and when it arose against me, I caught it by its beard, and struck and killed it. 36 Your servant has killed both lion and bear; and this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, seeing he has defied the armies of the living God.”

youth revivalIt is easy to say that evil is more intense and sophisticated than ever before.  Neither Saul, nor Israel had ever faced anything like Goliath before.  David said that it did not matter; this new threat would have the same outcome as all of the old threats.

Jesus is telling us to wait for the power that is about to break out no matter what.   Does revival look totally impossible to you?  Don’t worry, they all look that way until they happen.

The Price of God’s Miracle-Working Power

 

You want to see the lame walk—the blind see—and the deaf hear?  You want your days of powerless ministry to end?  You want to unlock the how and why God grants power to do mighty signs and wonders?  Do you wonder why so many have asked and so few have received the gift of healing and working of miracles?

It is time to peel back misconceptions.  It is time to be brutally honest.   We have been able to create mind-bending technological breakthroughs.  We can now do in an instant what previously took decades…but we will never find a shortcut to supernatural power.

The Holy Spirit’s work never changes.  His process of taking raw material and making a living breathing conduit of His power has never changed.  In 2,000 years, it has not been shortened or compromised one iota.

If you seek glamour and riches skip this message.  If you are dazzled by people you have seen powerfully used, save us both time—do not seek this power—you have no heart for it.

A young man—enthralled by the power he witnessed—ran up to Smith Wigglesworth and begged for the gift.  Smith said, “you don’t want it.  Before God is through with you, you will feel as if a thousand switch trains have run over you.”   Before God uses you greatly He will wound you deeply.

You still yearn to be used?  You still want power—real power and not the fluff of so many hyper-emotional meetings today?  Then proceed with caution.

The reason for our lack of power and miracles is plain—we are just not willing to pay the price.  If you are willing, the Holy Spirit will take you through the process to power.  Here then is the price of God’s miracle working power:

It all begins with self-emptying. Listen to E. M. Bounds: “The preacher must throw himself–with all the abandon of a perfect, self-emptying faith and a self-consuming zeal–into his work for the salvation of men.  The men who take hold of and shape a generation for God must be hearty, heroic, compassionate, and fearless martyrs.”

July 1975 — Kathryn Kuhlman on stage in probably the PNE Agrodome. One picture appeared in Aug 11, 1975 edition of People magazine

A.W. Tozer said they would, “serve God and mankind from motives too high to be understood by the rank and file of religious retainers who today shuttle in and out of the sanctuary.  They will make no decisions out of fear, take no course out of a desire to please, accept no service for financial considerations, perform no religious act out of mere custom; nor will they allow themselves to be influenced by the love of publicity or the desire for reputation.”

Oral Roberts despaired of life itself in his hunger to understand miracles.  He was pastoring without power when he went to Kansas City to hear William Branham.  That encounter with the supernatural was his line in the sand.  He went into fasting and prayer.  Oral went into the prayer closet and died.

In her desperation to understand the supernatural, Kathryn Kuhlman visited several healing meetings.  She often left disgusted and broken-hearted. Her tears and prayers reached critical mass and she made a holy vow to conduct meetings that were full of power and dignity.

She never looked back. Kathryn traced the moment of her power.  She said, “I died.”  From that moment on, there was no Kathryn Kuhlman, only an utterly devoted shell.

Compassion: Oral Roberts, T.L. Osborn, Charles S. Price and Aimee MacPherson all reported being overcome by compassion for the sick. Their level of caring rose to divine heights. They agonized for the lost, the sick, and the dying.  Matthew 14: 14 “And when Jesus went out He saw a great multitude; and He was moved with compassion for them, and healed their sick.”  Such compassion cannot be faked.  It emanates from Christ Himself. 

Hatred for sickness and evil: Few understand how the anointing is a product of hatred. Hebrews 1: 9 says: “You have loved righteousness and hated lawlessness; Therefore God, Your God, has anointed You With the oil of gladness more than Your companions.”

Alexander Dowie saw miracles after a plague struck his church in Sydney Australia killing 40 of his members.  An inner rage transformed him until he called out to God with a pure heart and was rewarded with so much power that it left his entire congregation free of plague.

John G. Lake saw his wife die and it unlocked a fury against evil that swept the world with healing.

Power always has a purpose. Luke 4: 17 And He was handed the book of the prophet Isaiah. And when He had opened the book, He found the place where it was written: 18 “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, Because He has anointed Me To preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to the captives And recovery of sight to the blind, To set at liberty those who are oppressed; 19 To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.”

The most powerful part of those verses is this phrase: “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me because.”  Your “because” ruins you for all other plans, purposes, and goals.  You must surrender to the one thing you are assigned to do.  You must be able to list your purpose, articulate it simply and clearly and execute it with extreme focus.

Every vessel of God has one life message.  It is an outstanding theme of their life and a distillation of all that the Holy Spirit has ever had them say.  T.L. Osborn’s life reached millions and said something astonishing, and what it said is something that he never compromised or changed.

God is giving you power to do one special work.  You cannot deviate from that divine intention.  It will be a true work of God.

Wait. Acts 1: 4 And being assembled together with them, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father…This is the key! Abraham could not wait.  King Saul could not wait.  Esau could not wait.

How long will you have to wait?  AS LONG AS IT TAKES.  All the powers of hell will challenge your decision to wait.  Satan has too much to lose if true healing power flows.  It will not come easily.  Your flesh will scream for release from your vigil.

Wait for true miracle power.  Do not settle for the life you had before this quest.  Your patience will be rewarded beyond measure.  He will come in power.  There will be no doubt.

This is the price of God’s miracle working power.

Let me personally invite you to a miracle service today at 6PM

MARIO, WE ASKED YOU TO COME TO OUR CHURCH AND YOU SAID NO…WHY?

 

Yes, we have had to turn down invitations.  It’s time you knew why.  We live in an evil time with explosive changes.   We are assigned to the front line to see unprecedented miracles.   I am honored by invitations to come and minister.  We are prepared to help advance the Kingdom of God in any area…in your area, but we simply cannot be a part of business as usual.  I want to tell you the best way we can help you and the reasons we have had to turn down invitations.

We reach out to unchurched people–especially youth.  We offer proof of Christ’s power to heal, deliver and save.  We pray our event with you will lead to a general ongoing awakening in your area.

We can help when leaders are willing to do certain things.  Here is the list and the Bible verses that confirm them.

1. Invite other churches to be involved.  We do not require a certain number of churches to be involved but we consider it vital to open the meeting to as many as possible.  No true move of God has ever blessed just one church.  Luke 5: 6, 7 “And when they had done this, they caught a great number of fish, and their net was breaking. So they signaled to their partners in the other boat to come and help them. And they came and filled both the boats, so that they began to sink. “

2. Invite community leaders to participate.  Leaders from business, education, law enforcement, politics and the media should be invited to participate.  People in these fields often have access to people and resources that ministers do not have.  They may also have just as great a burden for the city.  By asking for their help, you can greatly multiply your resources and impact.  Acts 16:14 “Now a certain woman named Lydia heard us. She was a seller of purple from the city of Thyatira, who worshiped God. The Lord opened her heart to heed the things spoken by Paul. 15 And when she and her household were baptized, she begged us, saying, “If you have judged me to be faithful to the Lord, come to my house and stay.” So she persuaded us.”

3. Be willing to move the meeting from your church to a neutral auditorium.  We have no problem beginning a meeting in your sanctuary, but we need a willingness to move to a neutral site.  Whenever we do this, the level of power intensifies.   We have also learned that the unchurched are far more likely to attend if the meeting is in a neutral auditorium.  Acts 26:26 “For the king knows of these things, before whom also I speak freely: for I am persuaded that none of these things are hidden from him; for this thing was not done in a corner.”

4.Understand the difference between church growth and advancing the Kingdom of God. 

A.Church growth:   One big reason we lost this generation is “Attraction” church models simply do not lead to moral awakening.   The pressure to get new people by surprising them every week with creative cutting-edge entertainment is never-ending.  There is simply no room for God to act.

B. Advancing the Kingdom of God:  If the servant of God cries out for their church to advance the Kingdom of God, many wonderful things start to happen.  They will grow in quantity and quality.   Not only this, they will touch the urgent needs of their community and strengthen other churches.

1 Corinthians 2: 4 “And my speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words of human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, 5 that your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the power of God.”

5. We want to demonstrate the supernatural with balance and integrity.  Groups that engage in out-of-Bible experiences do just as much harm as attraction churches. Bizarre behavior damages our cause.  An outpouring of the Holy Spirit will feature outbursts of joy and sorrow.  We dare not ban these life signs of revival.  What we’re against is behavior that distorts the Holy Spirit to outsiders.

1 Thessalonians 1: 5 “For our gospel did not come to you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Spirit and in much assurance, as you know what kind of men we were among you for your sake.”

In some churches the excuses were creative for why they could not do these things.  Sadly, we had to walk away.

We were even willing to offer training and other resources.  NEVER FORGET:  WE HAVE NEVER REJECTED AN INVITATION BECAUSE A GROUP WAS UNABLE TO DO THESE THINGS BUT BECAUSE THEY WERE UNWILLING TO DO THEM.  The size of your church is not nearly as important as the depth of your commitment.   Some churches came up with creative excuses for why they could not do these things.  Sadly, we had to walk away.

If your heart is open to all that I have written then be assured—we are ready to work alongside you to reap a great harvest in your area.

We want to help wherever there is a pure hunger for a true intervention of God.  We would love nothing better than to be able to work with you to win souls, heal the sick, and to see revival.

Sincerely,

 

 

 

P.S.  email us at mariomurillo.org click here to contact us  or text us at 775 238 3473

WHEN THIS HAPPENED

Bob Klen was dying from a rare form of leukemia.  Doctors said he had a 20% chance to survive.  He sat in the back with his son and then something happened—something that would change everyone who was there forever.
It happened on a Sunday in 2004 at New Life Church in Houston, Texas.  I was preaching a message called the Radical Middle.    Bob had come for an uplifting word.  He had just gotten devastating news.   This was not the sermon he was looking for.
The news that shattered his life was that chemo did not work against the rare form of leukemia that was killing him.   His doctors referred him to alternative medicine at M.D. Anderson.  This grim news was a double hit.  Not only were his options down to nontraditional methods but his insurance would not cover the massive cost of his treatment.
He came to church with his son under the weight of this news.   The video will tell you what happened next.  Watch the video.  You should not deny yourself an amazing experience.  Also, please share this post!  All of the Glory goes to our Lord Jesus Christ.

 

WHAT IF GOD CHOOSES TO GO IT ALONE?

If America is about to be destroyed will God still wait for the church?  If we continue to refuse revival will God go it alone?  Would He let America die so the church can save face?  The answer from scripture is clear:

Isaiah 63:5 “I looked, but there was no one to help, I was appalled that no one gave support; so, my own arm achieved salvation for me, and my own wrath sustained me.”

The answer from American history is also clear.  Michael Medved said: “The history of the United States displays an uncanny pattern: At moments of crisis, when the odds against success seem overwhelming and disaster looks imminent, fate intervenes to provide deliverance and progress. Historians may categorize these incidents as happy accidents, callous crimes, or the product of brilliant leadership, but the most notable leaders of the past four hundred years have identified this good fortune as something else—a reflection of divine providence.”

Don’t think for a moment that I am trying to comfort the church.  I am not trying to comfort—I am issuing a warning.  The church today is sicker than we know.  Many preachers are literally mocking God in the pulpit.

In 1998, David Wilkerson said this about the American Church: “Likewise today, Christians by the multiple thousands are casting off the yoke of Christ, tossing aside all limits and restrictions. This attitude is prevalent in many of the books and magazines you find in Christian bookstores. It’s almost as if our leaders are saying, “Relax! God isn’t hard. He’s our Daddy, we’re all his kids, and we’re meant to have a good time. Don’t let anyone disturb your fun!”

We have begun to glorify homosexuality and lesbianism. Our media applauds the “bravery” of gays who declare their sexual orientation – but we ought to weep over it! TV’s “Ellen” was hailed as a heroine when she came out of the closet on national television. Yet at one time, Christians across the country would have been on their faces crying out to God for mercy over such immorality.”  19 years later, can you imagine what David Wilkerson would say?

 

If God goes it alone it would be and extremely painful and violent—it would be embarrassing…even humiliating.

Learn the difference between a revival and an awakening.  Revival grows from within a repentant and obedient church and spills over to the secular culture.

Awakening is far more turbulent.  In an awakening church leaders are bypassed and the Holy Spirit falls directly on secular society.  Yes, God can still save America but if it is through an awakening it would still be a devastating experience for most Christians.  Jesus said of awakening:   And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent take it by force. -Matthew 11: 12

Wrath would fall on ministers.  1 Peter 4: 17 For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God…”  God will not spare the church public humiliation if the option is national destruction.  Pastors hooked on porn will be exposed.  All perversion will be brought out in the open.  God will allow the secular media to uncover secret sin.  Ruining the reputation of hypocritical ministers will not stop awakening—it will enhance it.

Seeker and mega churches would collapse:  Kent Carlson and Mike Lueken from Oak Hills Church in Folsom, California. admit their seeker church was a monster.  In their book, Renovation of the Church they say this: “When we structure a church around attracting people to cutting-edge, entertaining, interesting, inspirational and always-growing services and ministries, there is simply no room for letting up. Once we have communicated to the masses that if they come to our church, they’ll be surprised, then we have this never-ending burden to surprise people every week. The burden this places on the staff and laity can hardly be overstated. There were times when I felt like I simply did not have it in me to perform again at that level for yet another weekend.

Gradually, we began to get some clarity on a troubling truth: attracting people to church based on their consumer demands is in direct and irredeemable conflict with inviting people, in Jesus’ words, to lose their lives in order to find them.”

If an awakening hit today it would doom many mega church pastors.  On their watch—America fell faster and harder into immorality than ever.  Instead of reaching the lost for Christ, they weakened the already saved.   They were helpless to change our culture.

Wrath would fall on hypocrites.  1 Peter 4: 17 For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God…”  God will not spare the church public humiliation if the option is national destruction.  Pastors hooked on porn will be exposed.  All perversion will be brought out in the open.  God will allow the secular media to uncover secret sin.  Ruining the reputation of hypocritical ministers will not stop awakening—it will enhance it.

People could die.  Some who oppose awakening or live immorally as Ananias and Sapphira did could be killed.  (See Acts 5).

Natural disasters and global calamity:  God reserves the right to use these to spark awakening.

 

It is frightening how American Christians are not acting on the mercy God has shown us.  God is near a choice—a painful choice to stretch out His hand and pour our His Spirit—with or without us.

However, there is a remnant… Many are godly people are growing frustrated and desperate.  It is a good sign!  David Wilkerson said, “God is doing a secret work in our day. He is raising up a hungry people who are growing more and more dissatisfied with the fleshly, worldly system as it now exists—even in the church.

These God-hungry people are saying among themselves, “This is not it. There is something more. The bigness and the sensationalism of it all has left us empty and dry. We want more. More than entertainment. More than big, showy buildings. More than a shallow celebrity gospel. We want deeper values. We want to see Jesus. We want spotless robes of righteousness. We want to go back to doing things in total dependence on God.”

America can still be destroyed.  I don’t believe that will happen without one last radical move By God.  My first choice would be a true revival in the church.  However, if she refuses, God will move on to an awakening that will be brutal to lukewarm believers.  If that’s what it takes…so be it.

HEAVEN IN THE HALLWAY

When God closes one door He opens another but it can be hell in the hallway.   What good is failure and frustration?  Why has God closed every door to you?   Why has the Lord devised this divine interruption?  It can seem cruel and everything in you can rail against it.

HEAVEN IN THE HALLWAY

By Mario Murillo

When God closes one door He opens another but it can be hell in the hallway.   You are stuck in the hallway! What are you doing here?  What good is failure and frustration?  Why has God closed every door to you?   Why has the Lord devised this divine interruption?  It can seem cruel and everything in you can rail against it.

God will trap you in the hallway.  Jeremiah screamed, “He has hedged me in so that I cannot get out; He has made my chain heavy.” -Lamentations 3: 7

Hannah’s hell looked like this: “And her rival also provoked her severely, to make her miserable, because the Lord had closed her womb”- 1 Samuel 1: 6. Why would a loving God intensify her shame and pain by closing her womb?

Elijah was sent to the wilderness only to have God cut off his water supply: “And it happened after a while that the brook dried up, because there had been no rain in the land.” – 1 Kings 17:7 How does any of this make sense?

Paul had doors slammed in his face by the Holy Spirit: Acts 16: 6 “Now when they had gone through Phrygia and the region of Galatia, they were forbidden by the Holy Spirit to preach the word in Asia. 7 After they had come to Mysia, they tried to go into Bithynia, but the Spirit did not permit them.”

Not only this, Paul was put in prison at the very moment his physical presence in the churches was desperately needed. What gives?

The hallway seems like hell but if you calm your raging spirit and quell your fears and worries you can turn it into heaven.

The hallway is trying to save you.  Paul indeed had doors closed but then this happened in his hallway:  Acts 16: 8 So passing by Mysia, they came down to Troas. 9 And a vision appeared to Paul in the night. A man of Macedonia stood and pleaded with him, saying, ‘Come over to Macedonia and help us.’ 10 Now after he had seen the vision, immediately we sought to go to Macedonia, concluding that the Lord had called us to preach the gospel to them.”

You have gotten good at doing things you are not supposed to be doing.  You are off course.  The hallway is waking you up to the fact that you are busy but not effective. The hallway is where you end the tyranny of unimportant things.

The hallway is trying to teach you once and for all that God is your source: 1 Kings 17:8 Then the word of the Lord came to him, saying, 9 ‘Arise, go to Zarephath, which belongs to Sidon, and dwell there. See, I have commanded a widow there to provide for you.’”

Elijah’s welfare was never in doubt.  Even in drought and famine he was safe.  God was trying to show him that whether it is brooks, ravens, or starving widows, God will take care of you.

This forced interruption serves to slay your deepest fears.  The world did not end. The bills got paid.  No threat prospered against you.  The hallway shows you God is your only source.  Outward sources of provision are mirages.  Your heart is fixed trusting in the Lord.

The Hallway deepens right desires and kills selfish motives.  God closes Hannah’s womb to deepen her desire for children.  In the hallway, she became willing to offer her first child to God.  That child became Samuel the prophet.  He saved Israel and is considered second only to Moses in Judaism.   But it gets way better: God remembered Hannah:  1 Samuel 2: 21 says, “And the Lord visited Hannah, so that she conceived and bore three sons and two daughters. Meanwhile the child Samuel grew before the Lord.”  What an amazing outcome!  Not only does she get 5 more children—a prophet comes to save a nation.

The Hallway is a slingshot to unimagined momentum.  You seem immobilized and even like you are going backwards.  You are going backwards…for good reason!  Mighty elastic bands are being stretched to blast you forward.

Paul learned this lesson from his jail cell:  Philippians 1: 12 “But I want you to know, brethren, that the things which happened to me have actually turned out for the furtherance of the gospel, 13 so that it has become evident to the whole palace guard, and to all the rest, that my chains are in Christ; 14 and most of the brethren in the Lord, having become confident by my chains, are much more bold to speak the word without fear.”

He writes triumphantly to Timothy from the hallway: “for which I suffer trouble as an evildoer, even to the point of chains; but the word of God is not chained. -2 Timothy 2:9

The Hallway is where you find out that just knowing God is everything.  I have—for reasons I will never know till I get to heaven—been privileged to know some of the most honored Christians in our lifetime.  At first, I notice the massive ministries they built.  Soon that fades and all you see is their intimate relationship with Jesus—their practical dependency on the Holy Spirit, and their passion to obey.

Jesus said, “John 15: 7 “If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you.”  That is it!  These giants abide in Christ and everything else is secondary.  Until God frustrates your life and pulls the plug on your charade, you can’t know that.   Whatever you need to do will be done if you abide in Christ and His words abide in you.

These last days are horrible.  Within the church we have false doctrine, carnal leaders and a divided church.  Without, we have a world that is complicated and anti-Christian…it is a world that can blow up at any moment.  Don’t look for crisis to end but for God to work in you to make crisis lose its power to terrorize you.

The temptation to take matters into our own hands—to be obsessed with self-preservation and self-promotion—is greater than ever.  That is why there are hallways.

Daniel 11: 32 describes end time people.  It says, “Those who do wickedly against the covenant he shall corrupt with flattery; but the people who know their God shall be strong, and carry out great exploits.”   Why are they strong?  Why do they do great exploits?  Because they know God.

Knowing God in the hallway—losing all your fear—being completely overtaken by Him can not only bring heaven in the hallway…you may not want to leave.

I leave you with these words from the book God Calling: “The world has always seen service for me to be activity.  Only those near to me have seen that a life apart, of prayer, may, and does so often, accomplish more that all of the service man can offer me. If man lived apart with Me and only went out to serve at My direct command My Spirit could operate more and accomplish truly mighty things.”