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Six Things to Keep in Mind as You Weather the Storm


(Addendum No. 1 to a prophetic word titled “The Coming Perfect Storm” received by John Paul Jackson in August 2008)
 
By John Paul Jackson
Fall 2008
 
You don’t have to look very far before you see the beginning swells of the coming perfect storm. It seems this theme has caught the attention of many pundits and prophets. Almost every day, there are multiple signs of the perfect storm’s approach, and notice I said “approach”--meaning, it isn’t here yet. These are merely the early winds of the storm. The scent of rain is in the air. Nearly everywhere we turn, we become more aware that without God’s intervention, the world will not be the same 10 years from now. And we are correct in thinking that.
 
Here are five things to keep in mind as you weather this storm with the grace and, prayerfully, the glory of God resting on you.
 
1. Don’t overreact to media hype and spin. They learned a long time ago that sensationalism sells, and they will play it for all it’s worth. In the midst of the media flurry … God [will reveal] His secrets to His servants--so look for one. God is not caught by surprise. In His omniscience, He has been preparing you for this very hour. You will not fail. Remember what God told Jeremiah: “Thus says the Lord: ‘Do not learn the way of the Gentiles [those who do not know Me]; do not be dismayed at the signs of heaven, for the Gentiles [those who do not know Me] are dismayed at them’”(Jer. 10:2, NKJV).
 
When there is panic, we tend to make decisions we later regret. Don’t assume the worst, and don’t be afraid. Should you plan? Yes. Is this serious? Yes. But it’s not time to panic.
 
2. Simplify and streamline your life. What things do you do that are pure convenience? Could you cut back on any luxuries? Keep your current car? Take in a roommate? How about reducing your latte count at the coffee shop? Selectively start looking to cut back in areas that don’t really reflect your life’s mission or calling, or aren’t making a positive difference in others’ lives.
 
This will be an opportune time to follow in the disciples’ footsteps: “So continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they ate their food with gladness and simplicity of heart” (Acts 2:46).
 
3. Reconnect with friends and family. God is your Source--not your bank account, not your 401(k), not your gold, not your stock portfolio. Your friendships and other relationships are what feed your emotional health, and they stabilize you; you need them. Research shows that friendships play a dramatic role in getting people through difficult times. So reconnect today.
 
Remember that “a man who has friends must himself be friendly, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother” (Prov. 18:24).
 
4. Rethink your focus. You have a choice: You can live your life by principles or by pressures. Those who “fail” in life usually keep their eyes fixed on their current problems and lose sight of their life principles. As things change, it is vital to remind yourself of the principles you live your life by. Never lose sight of them during challenging times. They will help keep you focused. The difficulties we’re facing nowmaybe God’s wake-up call to remind you of your original vision and purpose and why He made you the way He made you.
 
Take this time to rethink and re-evaluate. “Where there is no vision, the people perish” (Prov. 29:18). If you have no vision, your only other option is to go backward or decay.
 
5. Be an influence. Are you an influence in your culture? For many, this will be a time of innovation and invention. For others, it will be a time of study and preparation for the promotion that will come when this season eventually passes--which it will. Don’t chase trends, but study them to see where the culture is going. You should always be looking for original and innovative ways to engage the needs of others. Needs are going to abound, so ask God for a solution to those needs, and you’ll succeed when your secular peers are failing.
 
6. Take more time to listen. In the coming months and perhaps years there will be an entirely new set of needs that the people and this nation will have. The Lord wants to give innovative ideas and inventions to those who are close to Him. Set aside time to listen to Him. Prayer is great, but if all we do is make our needs known to God, it will be very difficult to listen. There is a lot we do not know about this coming time frame. God just might have something He would like to say to you.

Charisma News -

Meeting of Elders of Evangelical Churches and Bishops of Groups of Churches of the Ukraine with Pastor Sunday Adeladja held in Kiev, Ukraine.  

 
December 16, 2008, Kiev, Ukraine. 
A meeting of elders of Evangelical Churches and bishops of Churches with Sunday Adeladja, senior pastor of the Religious Congregation "God's Embassy", and was held in Kiev, Ukraine. The meeting was called in order to address Sunday Adeladja's activities entailing negative ramifications for the evangelical movement in the Ukraine.
 
During the meeting the of Evangelical Churches and bishops of Churches of the Ukraine expressed their concern and claims regarding the actions and statements made by pastor Sunday Adeladja in the following sequence:
 
1. Public exaggeration of Adeladja's own merits and results of activities (e.g. exaggeration of the number of parishioners of "God's Embassy" as well as often openly spoken untruth, e.g. regarding his role and involvement in the Orange Revolution in the Ukraine);
 
2. Non-evangelical doctrine of financial prosperity as well as spiritual support of financial structures (e.g. "King`s Capital", etc.) which resulted in impoverishment of many people left without housing and means of living;
 
3. Personal and individual management of the religious congregation, creating an image of personal infallibility which resulted in forming of Sunday Adeladja's "personality cult";
 
4. Appropriation of funds belonging to the religious congregation having been collected as offerings for the construction of a religious compound;
 
5. Involving of the "God's Embassy" congregation into political processes which entailed building adversity by politicians towards churches and, consequently, multiple assaults against evangelical churches in mass media as well as disgrace in society;
 
6. Making statements and cultivating an opinion that "God's Embassy" is supreme among all churches and Sunday Adeladja is supreme among all pastors resulting in haughtiness and disdain shown toward all other churches;
 
7. Making statements on behalf of all evangelical and protestant churches of the Ukraine without being endowed such authority.
 
In the process of the meeting, the bishops of the Ukrainian evangelical churches did not accuse "God's Embassy" congregation or its members, did not disparage their social and evangelistic work, sincerety and diligence. However, the elders and bishops of churches were concerned that the elders of "God's Embassy" failed to discern and make express timely reaction to Sunday Adeladja's messages contradicting sound evangelical doctrine.
 
The meeting and conversing of the elders and bishops of the Ukrainian churches with pastor Sunday Adeladja was held based on the Bible (Ezek. 34:1-11; Math. 6:24; Math. 18:7; I Pet. 5:1-3; I Tim. 5:20; I Tim. 6:5-11).
 
After the meeting Sunday Adeladja thanked all those present for the meeting, acknowledged many mistakes, asked the ministers for forgiveness and promised to repent publicly for the mistakes acknowledged as well as defer to evangelical standpoint expressed at the meeting by the leadership of the Ukrainian evangelical churches. From their end, the elders and bishops expect Sunday Adeladja to make corrections promised for their final conclusions to follow and be made.
 
The leaders of the Ukrainian evangelical churches and groups of churches called all Christians to pray for the deceived, suffering and devoid of faith and expressed a hope for positive resolution of this situation.
 
The following ministers participated in the meeting:
M.S. Panochko, Senior Bishop of the All-Ukrainian Union of Pentecostal Churches of Evangelical Faith
L.N.Padun, Senior Bishop of the Ukrainian Christian Evangelical Church
A.V. Glukhovsky, Assistant Senior Bishop of the Union of Free Churches of Evangelical Faith in the Ukraine
F.M. Savochka, Bishop of the Church of God of Christians of Evangelical Faith in the Ukraine
V.N. Reshetinsky, Bishop of "Ukrainian Missionary Church", Association of Churches of Evangelical Faith Christians 
A.P. Gavrilyuk, President of the Association of Independent Charismatic Christian (Full Gospel) Churches in the Ukraine
A.I. Kalyuahniy, Bishop of the Council of Independent Evangelical Churches in the Ukraine
B.S. Grisenko, Senior Pastor of Kiev Messianic Congregation
P.I. Kovalenko, Senior Pastor of Kharkov Christian Church
S.V. Balyuk, Bishop of the Evangelical Christian Church of the Living God

 

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OFFICIAL STATEMENT

 KYIV — A number of evangelical leaders in Ukraine signed a statement, dated 29 December 2008, and sent exclusively, in English translation, to RISU’s office. The subject is the activity of Pastor Sunday Adelaja, head of the Kyiv-based Embassy of God Church. The leaders, among other things, write that “We radically dissociate ourselves from Sunday Adelaja and his activity.” The original text, with no editing changes, follows.
 
OFFICIAL STATEMENT

of the senior leaders of evangelical churches of Ukraine
regarding the activity of Sunday Adelaja and the
negative impact it has had on Ukrainian Christianity


“…and have tested those who say they are apostles,
and are not and have found them liars…”
( Revelation 2:2, Bible, NKJ)

On December, 16th, 2008 a meeting of the senior ministers of evangelical churches of Ukraine with the senior pastor of the “God’s Embassy” religious community Sunday Adelaja took place in Kyiv, Ukraine. The purpose of the meeting was to lay claims and to pose the questions exciting within the churches and the public of Ukraine as well as to confront S.Adelaja about his actions and statements which do not correspond with the Holy Scriptures. In the course of the discussion S.Adelaja acknowledged many of his mistakes, asked for forgiveness, promised to repent publicly and also promised to subordinate to the evangelical position expressed at the meeting with the leaders of evangelical churches of Ukraine. From our side we, as senior leaders of evangelical churches, expected pastor Sunday Adelaja to consequently undertake definite actions in the fulfillment of the promised corrections.

To our deep regret, no actions which could be qualified as “worthy fruits of repentance” have been undertaken by S.Adelaja since the time of the meeting. On the contrary, such reports as "Sunday Adelaja thanked leaders of evangelical churches for support", or “It is unfair to give the one-sided report, said pastor Sunday Adelaja ", or " An official address of pastor Sunday Adelaja to all protestant believers" appeared on the “God’s Embassy’s” web-site. This makes it clear that pastor Sunday resorted to manipulations, untrue statements and self-justification.

We have taken into consideration the appeals for the help and council of many people from among the members of the “God’s Embassy” religious community who suffered from the activity of "King's Capital" financial company. Testimonies of these people, the close analysis of the facts, reaction to reproof of the bishops of evangelical churches of Ukraine (dated December, 16th, 2008) – all of these point out that pastor Sunday Adelaja is an inspirer and a spiritual protector of the above mentioned financial structures which finally led to deplorable spiritual and material condition of many people, and even to the point of loss of their accommodation and own habitation. The given activity has become the cause for some mass-media to identify Sunday Adelaja with all Christian evangelical churches.

Previously leaders of various Christian evangelical churches repeatedly admonished and warned S.Adelaja, but have been ignored.

In view of the above-stated and based on the Holy Bible (Is. 56:10-11; Is.57:17,20-21; Ezek. 34:1-11; Mat. 6:24; 18:17; 1st Peter 5:1-3; 1st Tim 5:20; 6:5-11) WE ANNOUNCE:

• We radically dissociate ourselves from Sunday Adelaja and his activity.

• We condemn:
— Aspirations to create a cult of personality;
— Methods and the activity, based on self-advertisement, exaggeration of personal merits and on lie;
— The false doctrine of prosperity, the sin of love of money;
— Practice to curse the church members and parishioners who disagree with his opinion.

• We ascertain:
— Sunday Adelaja is the inspirer and the spiritual patron of the para-church financial structures («King's Capital» and other);
— Sunday Adelaja evaded from the pure evangelical doctrine and is currently in spiritual seduction and error.

• We address:
— All the church leaders to abstain from brotherly fellowship with Sunday Adelaja;
— To pray for spiritual healing of members of the “God’s Embassy” religious community;
— To pray for those who suffered from the activity of the "King's Capital" financial company;
— The Board of the “God’s Embassy Church to discharge Sunday Adelaja and to compel him to leave the ministry for the improvement of the spiritual the church.

• We suggest Sunday Adelaja to sincerely repent in his words and deeds and we do believe that only a true repentance gives freedom and cleanses from all sins and delusions.
(Holy Bible, Revelation 3:18-19: “I counsel you to buy from me gold refined in the fire, that you may be rich and white garments, that you may be clothed, that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed and anoint your eyes with eye salve that you may see. As many as I love, I rebuke and Chasten. Therefore be zealous and repent”.)

The Official Statement was signed by:

Bishop Mikhail Panochko – President of the All-Ukrainian Church Union of Evangelical Faith Christians - Pentecostal;
Bishop Leonid Padun – Leader of the Ukrainian Christian Evangelical Church;
Assistant Bishop Anatoly Gluhovsky – Union of the Free Churches of the Evangelical Faith Christians of Ukraine;
Bishop Philip Savochka – Leader of the “Salvation” Christian Evangelical Church;
Bishop Valery Reshetinskiy – Leader of the Union of Christian of Evangelical Faith “Ukrainian Missionary Сhurch”;
Bishop Anatoliy Gavriluk – President of the Union of Independent Christian Charismatic Churches of Ukraine (Full Gospel);
Bishop Anatoliy Kalyuzhniy – Leader of Independent Evangelical Churches of Ukraine Union;
Pastor Boris Grisenko – Kyiv Messianic Congregation;
Pastor Peter Kovalenko – Senior Pastor of Kharkiv Christian Church.

Kyiv, December 29, 2008

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Gideons Celebrate 100 Years of Bible Distribution

 
[01.08.09] Celebrating its 100-year anniversary, the Gideons International, founded by John Nicholson and Sam Hill, stributed an astounding 1.5 billion Bibles since 1908, when the group began placing Scripture in hotel rooms reports the Associated Press (AP).

“I think there’s an untold number of people that have had their lives changed as a result of reading the Gideon Bible or New Testament,” said Steve Smith, director of communications and development for the Gideons to the AP. “We’ve been blessed to learn the details of many of those and are confident there are still many more we have not yet learned about.”

Last year alone the interdenominational ministry gave out nearly 77 million Gideon Scriptures, translated into 85 languages in 187 countries around the world. “What it’s done is actually changed our culture,” Leith Anderson, president of the National Association of Evangelicals said to the AP. “People expect there to be a Bible in a hotel room. There’s hardly anything that’s parallel to it.”

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Inaugural Benediction

The Rev. Joseph Lowery
January 20, 2009
 
God of our weary years,
God of our silent tears,
Thou who has brought us thus far along the way;
Thou who has by Thy might
Led us into the light,
Keep us forever in the path, we pray.
Lest our feet stray from the places, our God, where we met Thee,
Lest our hearts drunk with the wine of the world, we forget Thee;
Shadowed beneath Thy hand,
May we forever stand,
True to Thee, oh God,
True to our native land.
 
We truly give thanks for the glorious experience we’ve shared this day. We pray now oh Lord for Your blessing upon Your servant, Barack Obama, the 44th president of these United States, his family, and his administration. He has come to this high office at a low moment in the nation and indeed the global fiscal climate.
 
But because we know You’ve got the whole world in Your hand, we pray not only for our nation but for the community of nations. Our faith does not shrink though pressed by the flood of mortal ills. For we know that Lord You’re able and You’re willing to work through faithful leadership to restore stability. Mend our brokenness. Heal our wounds and deliver us from the exploitation of the poor, of the least of these and from favoritism toward the rich, the elite of these.
 
We thank You for the empowering of Thy servant, our 44th president, to inspire our nation to believe that yes we can work together to achieve a more perfect union. And while we have sown the seed of greed, the wind of greed and corruption, and even as we reap the whirlwind of social and economic disruption, we seek forgiveness and we come in the spirit of unity and solidarity to commit our support to our president by our willingness to make sacrifices, to respect your creation, to turn to each other and not on each other.
 
And now Lord in the complex arena of human relations, help us to make choices on the side of love, not hate, on the side of inclusion, not exclusion, tolerance, not intolerance.
 
And as we leave this mountaintop help us to hold on to the spirit of fellowship and the oneness of our family. Let us take that power back to our homes, our workplaces, our churches, our temples, our mosques, wherever we seek Your will.
 
Bless President Barack. First Lady Michelle. Look over our little angelic Sasha and Malia. We go now to walk together as children, pledging that we won’t get weary in the difficult days ahead. We know You will not leave us alone with Your hands of power and Your heart of love. Help us then now Lord to work for that day when nations will not lift up sword against nation, when tanks will be beaten into tractors. When every man and every woman shall sit under his or her own vine or fig tree and none shall be afraid. When justice shall roll down like water and righteousness as a mighty stream. Lord in the memory of all the satins who from their labor rest and in the joy of a new beginning. We ask You to help us to work for that day when black will not be asked to get back, when brown can stick around, when yellow will be mellow, when the red man can get ahead man and when white will embrace what is right. Let all those who do justice and love mercy say amen. Say Amen. And Amen. read more

Inaugural Opening Prayer The Rev. Joseph Lowery January 20, 2009

The Rev. Rick Warren
January 20, 2009
 
Almighty God, our Father, everything we see and everything we can’t see exists because of you alone. It all comes from you. It all belongs to you. It all exists for your glory.

History is your story. The Scripture tells us, “Hear O Israel, the Lord is our God. The Lord is One.” And you are the compassionate and merciful one. And you are loving to everyone you have made.

Now, today, we rejoice not only in America’s peaceful transfer of power for the 44th time. We celebrate a hingepoint of history with the inauguration of our first African-American president of the United States. We are so grateful to live in this land, a land of unequaled possibility, where the son of an African immigrant can rise to the highest level of our leadership. And we know today that Dr. King and a great cloud of witnesses are shouting in heaven.

Give to our new President, Barack Obama, the wisdom to lead us with humility, the courage to lead us with integrity, the compassion to lead us with generosity. Bless and protect him, his family, Vice President Biden, the cabinet, and every one of our freely elected leaders.
 
Help us, O God, to remember that we are Americans, united not by race, or religion, or blood, but to our commitment to freedom and justice for all. When we focus on ourselves, when we fight each other, when we forget you, forgive us. When we presume that our greatness and our prosperity is ours alone, forgive us. When we fail to treat our fellow human beings and all the earth with the respect that they deserve, forgive us. And as we face these difficult days ahead, may we have a new birth of clarity in our aims, responsibility in our actions, humility in our approaches, and civility in our attitudes, even when we differ.

Help us to share, to serve and to seek the common good of all. May all people of good will today join together to work for a more just, a more healthy and a more prosperous nation and a peaceful planet. And may we never forget that one day all nations and all people will stand accountable before you. We now commit our new president and his wife, Michelle and his daughters, Malia and Sasha, into your loving care.

I humbly ask this in the name of the one who changed my life, Yeshua, Isa, Jesus [Spanish pronunciation], Jesus, who taught us to pray:

“Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.”

 
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