I have had a problem with obesity for most of my life, although I didn’t know it. Since I was nine years old, I have been consuming a lot. I consume when I feel bad about myself and when I am worried about my family. I also consume simply because it feels good.  I’ve tried to do something about it, but just when I get moving, something seems to happen that gets my focus back on consuming.

I didn’t think I had a problem.

I didn’t notice it was happening.

 Until, one day…I looked in the mirror and I didn’t like what I saw.

  • I saw a woman full of sermons, books and spiritual insights.
  • A woman that had been in too many powerful services to count.
  • I’ve been prayed for 100’s of times.
  • Received prophetic words.
  • Been delivered…
  • Been re-delivered…
  • Answered altar calls every Sunday.
  • Attended Sunday school, children’s church, youth group, college and career group, cell group, life group…
  • I even went to Bible school and got ordained.

God has poured into me in so many ways. I am fat with anointing, power and potential…

 And my eyes are often just on me.

I pray for myself and for my family. My needs, my desires… ME, ME, ME.

Even as a minister, my focus was on building the ministry I was a part of – helping the people in our church, bringing people to Christ. All good things, but it was still about my people and my stuff.

My agenda.

How about you?

Do you sing songs on Sunday about changing the world and then turn inward toward your own life the rest of the week?

My friends, we have a serious problem. We are living in a time when God is saying, “Advance! Take what I’ve invested in you and shape the world you live in!”   And our eyes are focused on our stuff.

 Something has to change.

No More Riding Spiritual Coattails:

I was in a prayer meeting this week and a leader I respect commented that it’s time for our generation to stop riding on the coattails of our spiritual leaders. At some point, we have to step up and decide that we will take on the responsibility of warring for and securing the areas God has called us to occupy.

Too many of us put all of the expectation for spiritual leadership on a few individuals that are “called” to ministry. They are older or more experienced. They work in the church. They’re the ones that are supposed to do the work.

So we think.  But that’s not Kingdom.

  • WE need to GET the vision.
  • WE need to learn how to FIGHT effectively.
  • WE need to OWN the process.

Most of us are living off the benefits of someone else’s fight. The danger is that if we don’t learn how to war ourselves, we will lose what we have when those leaders are gone.

And what about our kids? If we don’t start securing things, what will it look like for them?

Shifting Your Thinking From Church To Kingdom:

Peter Wagner, in his excellent book, This Changes Everything, talks about the transition from a church vision to a kingdom vision. Most of us think of Jesus coming as Savior, but that was only a part of His mission. He came as a conquering King. If we leave the message at Savior, our focus stays inward.

I need a savior.

Wagner says that there is a progression in thinking that is illustrated by a ladder. The first step is a focus on self. That’s where most of us hang out. We connect with God to meet needs in our life. The second step is a focus on the church. A smaller number of people hang out here. They have learned to serve and do their part in helping their local church succeed. The top step of the ladder holds a focus on Kingdom. Not too many people hang out here.

But this is where all the action is.

The focus turns outward to the bigger agenda of Christ…redeeming cities and nations. It becomes about understanding your calling in the greater context of the world you live in. It’s about being willing to engage in the spiritual battles God has called you to fight.

spiritual leadership

Fat Or Fight: What Will You Choose?

God is making a very clear call to the church to step up and fight in this season. He’s not satisfied with growing big churches. He loves our worship, but He wants more. He wants to see us grow up into the warriors we were created to be. He wants to see us engaged in the world we live in, fighting side by side with Him to secure our inheritance.

We’ve learned how to ascend in our worship and we’ve gotten fat on His presence. Now we have to learn how to come back down and release what we’ve received.

We’ve lived off the warfare of our spiritual leaders long enough. It’s time to become those leaders ourselves.

We need to get the vision for the future and war for the provision to make it happen. We need to look at what we do on a daily basis not as a career or a means for financial stability, but as a holy calling from God.

  • You’re not there to make a paycheck; you are there to make a difference.
  • You’re not just an employee; you’re called to influence the direction of the company you work for.
  • You are not a part of the crowd; you are a leader of your generation.

It’s time to change your thinking.

Spiritual Freedom Carries Responsibility

Todd Henry had a great piece on freedom this week. I highly recommend you read it. His main point was this: freedom is a responsibility.

 Freedom spent solely in the pursuit of your own lifestyle, marking wins on your personal scorecard, or making your life a little more comfortable is wasted. – Todd Henry

This applies to our spiritual freedom as well. We’ve been blessed by God to the point of being fat with His presence and His blessings. We should enjoy that, for sure.

But with the blessings comes a responsibility.

He wants us to make use of what we’ve been given to change lives and push back darkness. We aren’t called to hide behind the secure walls of our churches. We’re called to advance His kingdom.

How will our generation be judged? What will we do with the freedom we have been given? Will we spend it in the service of others or in the service of ourselves?

It’s time to accept His call to see the bigger picture.  It’s time to stop expecting other people to do what needs to be done.  It’s on you and me.  I’m writing this for me as much as anyone else.

I’m tired of being fat. How about you?