On Monday, 29 April 2019, 11:46, Pastors Oweikumo & Chinyeze Eradiri <pastor@kingswayharwich.org> wrote:



Dear Minister, Compliments of the Easter Season to you! May I have the privilege of inviting you, your leaders, potential leaders and congregation to the maiden East Anglia Revival Summit (EARS). Similar meetings are planned for the South West and the North of England (please see below). The EARS is a non-denominational clarion call to all who long for revival of a personal love for God, and desire to be involved in raising up the next generation of Christian leaders who will bring transformation and God’s principles to bear on all aspects of life in Britain. Please come along if you feel God is stirring you to serve Him in this way. Do feel free to share this invitation with people of like minds. Registration and meals will be provided free of charge. Accommodation will also be provided free of charge, but on a first-come-first-served basis. There is space for camping in tents at Red House Farm. Please let John Maxwell know if you will be attending: admin@kingswayharwich.org or 01255 551 722. May the glory of God be abundantly evident in Britain again!  Yours in Christ’s service, Professor Oweikumo Eradiri FRSPH, FFRPSPastor, King’s Way Community Church, HarwichCo-ordinator, EARS
---------- Forwarded message ---------
From: Living Seed Europe <goke.adejumo@gmail.com>
Subject: UK Revival Labours 2019
To: <oweikumo@gmail.com>


UK Revival Labours 2019View this email in your browserREVIVAL LABOURS IN THE UNITED KINGDOM - 2019:          

 SUFFOLK, SOMERSET & MERSEYSIDE Dearly Beloved,Peace, peace be with you all.  And mercy and grace from God our Father and our Lord Jesus Christ. We are grateful to the Lord for His enduring mercies and the grace that has called this meeting and brought it specifically to Suffolk, Somerset and Merseyside this year.When what has developed into these series of  meetings held for the first time in the year 2001 at Cefn Lea in Wales, as we laboured in prayers over our burden for the United Kingdom as concerns the state of the Church as well as the situation of society, the Lord assured us that “…..This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God might be glorified thereby. “ Since that time we have held His hands, trusting that the Strength of Israel, our Faithful One, will never fail. However, at that meeting He also declared that He was seeking, “channels and vessels for Revival.” Those who will be yielded to Him until the Fountain of Living Waters spring forth from their evacuated bellies and they in turn partner with God in "making this valley full of ditches". These are those, who are willing to drop their lives at the foot of the Cross , in order to engage in digging old wells and new ditches until fresh and Living Spring flows out.Over the years we have consistently seen His helping hand and have sensed the imminence of the fulfilment of His promise that we shall behold His glory over this land. On this we stand, we can do no less. It is in that light we have walked with confidence, in the immutability of His counsel.  Again, we do thank the Lord for your continued fellowship in our common quest to see a fresh, widespread but Sovereign revival in our generation. This retreat is an outreach to the Body of Christ, especially those in positions of influence. You are warmly invited along with your Church leadership. Please let me know how many will be coming along with you. Your presence will be a blessing to us during these two-day retreats, any or whatever combination of which you can choose to attend. 

(1) SUFFFOLK Meeting: UK Revival Labours 2019: SUFFOLK
 Date: Friday 17 - Saturday 18 May 2019 Venue: Red House Farm, Fen Lane, Earl Stonham, Stowmarket, IP14 5EG Tel. 01449 711877Time:     Friday:      18:O0 - 21:00 Hrs               
             Saturday: 
10:O0 - 16:00 Hrs THEME: Instrumentality of Discipleship For RevivalENQUIRIES: +44 7886 751941Ministering: Bro. Gbile Akanni (2) SOMERSET Meeting: UK Revival Labours 2019:

(2)SOMERSET
 Date: Sunday 19 - Monday 20 May 2019 Venue: Martock Christian Fellowship, Church Street, Martock, Somerset, TA12 6JLTime: Sunday  19th : 18:00 - 20:00 Hrs Monday 20th : 09:30 -16:00 HrsTHEME: Effective Spiritual Leadership in the Last DaysENQUIRIES: +44 7877 096062 or +447747628962Ministering: Bro. Gbile Akanni 

(3) MERSEYSIDE Meeting: UK Revival Labours 2019: MERSEY
 Date: Wednesday 22 - Thursday 23 May 2019 Venue: Lifestream Christian Centre, Old Colliery Rd, Whiston, Prescot, L35 3QX, United KingdomTime: Wednesday  22nd : 18:00 - 20:00 Hrs Thursday 23rd : 09:30 -16:00 HrsENQUIRIES: +44 7889 457674Ministering: Bro. Gbile Akanni (Detailed program with theme, etc. for the three meetings will be out in due course)(Registration, refreshments and meals are free of charge) Please signify your intention to attend any of the above three meetings by return of email. (We need the numbers for refreshments / meals preparation and other logistics reasons)Hotels / Accommodation : You will need to arrange your own accommodation/ book your hotels for the meetings at Martock and Prescot.. [For the Suffolk meeting however, if we have early indications of interest, we may be able to assist in arranging free accommodation for a few delegates subject to availability. It will be on first come first serve basis]May the Lord perfect these arrangements to His own glory alone. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit.  In Christ Jesus,'Goke Adejumo

ears image.jpg

East Anglia Revival Summit

“Instrumentality of Discipleship for Revival”

Red House Farm, Fen Lane, Earl Stonham, Stowmarket, IP14 5EG

Fri 17th – Sat 18th May 2019

Gbile Akanni

 

2019-05-17 Fri

Session 1  Revisiting the Vision for the UK  (19:00-21:00 p.m.)

Gbile Akanni

 

We are holding on to a promise that God is going to visit this land again.

This is what he has said to us, and he has not overlooked it; he will still bring it to pass:

 

2Ki 3:16-18  And he said, "Thus says the LORD: 'Make this valley full of ditches.'  (17)  For thus says the LORD: 'You shall not see wind, nor shall you see rain; yet that valley shall be filled with water, so that you, your cattle, and your animals may drink.'  (18)  And this is a simple matter in the sight of the LORD; He will also deliver the Moabites into your hand.

 

Several years ago we were having intense prayers and God began to speak about the UK, and that he would visit it again. He spoke of what he has used this nation to do in the past, and the people he has raised from here who went to the nations to spread the gospel, even at the expense of their own lives.

 

Even the move of God in the U.S., in the early days, it was from this land that people went there. People like Jonathan Edwards carried a fire in their bones. When we speak of the move of God in Asia, we cannot forget Hudson Taylor, who studied to be a medical doctor, but left it all to carry the gospel to the people of China.

 

Others left these shores to go to Africa. Some years ago I went to a village in Scotland called Blantyre, where David Livingstone was born and raised. He left Scotland and went all the way to Africa. His heart was bubbling for the word of God, and in Malawi, there are places named Blantyre, and there is a “David Livingstone” synod.

 

We will not forget to talk of Mary Slessor, who went to Nigeria, and [another]. They brought a great move of God to that continent.

 

God spoke to us that that land that sent men everywhere had become distressed, but that he was going to remember this land again and revisit it. The strategy he gave is what I will share tonight: The instrumentality of discipleship for revival.

 

There are two levels

1.       Your own personal level, and what will impact your own heart.

2.       The bigger perspective.

 

“Make this valley full of ditches.”

The more I prayed about this the more I saw that we would not see wind. We are not looing for a “windy” revival. Some revivals are very windy, and people get very excited. You can see it and publish it very easily. I would have loved to have been involved in something like this, but I was wondering what kind of revival and visitation it is that we will see - we will not see wind and rain.

 

Each revival I have studied gave me the impression of a mighty rushing wind, and so quietly we had that expectation. But God opened my understanding of what he wants to achieve here: the means of achieving it will be different. He said, “Make this valley full of ditches. You will not see wind or rain, and yet this valley will be full of water.”

 

When I shared this 21 years ago, I was told that Jonathan Carter’s father had exactly that same vision, and that is what led to the founding of the Three Counties Church.

 

This series of meetings is a new beginning. God has said to us to “go back again”. There’s a need to regroup and to discover a fresh momentum.

 

The first level is our own personal level: God wants to move in you and through you.

There is also the bigger picture of what God wants to do in this land.

 

From those early meetings, God has brought many brothers and opened opportunities to dig ditches in many parts of this land. But God said that we would not see wind or rain, and yet this land will be flooded with water.

 

What is the instrumentality that God is looking for? What does he want to do, and what is the peculiarity of the way in which he wants to see revival break forth? We need to understand it and to pray about it, and to ask God how he wants us to be involved in this.

 

We will need to dig containers into the land in order to create the capacity to contain the water that will fill the land. We need to dig out even that which looks good, so that there will be space for the spring to spring forth. It became clear that we have to dig these ditches everywhere in the valley. It has to be filled with ditches.

 

If they are real wells, it means they are located and localised. It means that they can serve that area with water. Each of these ditches is deliberately dug, so that the land will be filled with water and will change the vegetation of the localities.

 

We are going to go community to community, area to area, digging ditches. They are ditches, not tanks. If they were tanks you could carry one there on a truck, but they are ditches [they are localised in the area].

 

God is thinking in two ways:

1.       The location where you are.

a.       In that area there has to be water to bring refreshing to the land.

b.      God is saying to dig him ditches.

c.       This will not be a kind of crusade to which everyone comes and then goes back.

d.      It will be a deliberate work which focuses on people and localities.

e.      It will provide, in localities, men who will carry the water of refreshing. Does that involve me and you? If so, something must happen to our lives; he must dig us out. He must take away every shallowness.

 

When Isaac was about to relocate to Egypt, God told him to stay where he was. He wanted to go because where he was was dry. When famine had come before, his father had migrated to Egypt. Isaac wanted to do the same; to move from a land that was dry and looked barren. But God told him to stay, and he would bless him there. In obedience, Isaac stayed and sowed, invested, into that land. He began to dig wells, and he discovered that there were water-bearing wells that his father had dug. As water came the people said that it belonged to them. Instead of fighting, Isaac began to dig again. Then more people said it was theirs, so he moved on again and dug again.

 

It means that in that place that looked dry, there was water for refreshing.

 

Isaac could have lifted up his hands and prayed for rain, but no, he had to dig wells to get the water.

 

Tonight, I want to give you a perspective of what we are looking for. We won’t see wind or rain, but we will see revival, which will fill the whole of this valley, but the process is that the bearers will be dug.

 

God is going to dig into your life afresh. There is something that God wants you to bring as a contribution to this land. There is something that will come out of your barrenness that will refresh this land.

 

I will read one verse to you, and then we will pray on it.

 

The instrumentality of producing men who will bear the water in their generation.

 

Mat 4:18-22  And Jesus, walking by the Sea of Galilee, saw two brothers, Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea; for they were fishermen.  (19)  Then He said to them, "Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men."  (20)  They immediately left their nets and followed Him.  (21)  Going on from there, He saw two other brothers, James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, in the boat with Zebedee their father, mending their nets. He called them,  (22)  and immediately they left the boat and their father, and followed Him.

 

Jesus had a vision of what was going to happen in the entire world. He had such a powerful anointing that he could have just stood somewhere and spoken, and thousands could have fallen down crying. But he didn’t think that that kind of one-man ministry was an enduring way to do the will of God on earth. Instead, he saw men that nobody would have regarded. Up to the time that Jesus left and God started to use them [Peter, Andrew, etc.] people could not forget to call them “barbarians”.

 

If Jesus hadn’t offered Peter that kind of discipleship, no-one would have been talking about him today; he would have just lived and died by the lakeside, and he would have been forgotten. But Jesus gave the offer for them to follow him, that they might be fishers of men. He took them from nowhere. Where God picks you from is not the matter; it’s what he does with you that matters. The issue is: “Did he put his hand on your life and work with you?” It’s not about your capacity. Because he put his hand on their lives they became choice instruments in their generation – and they were not perfect men.

 

Jesus gave them opportunity for discipleship; a chance for what heaven wanted them to be. Jesus saw the thousands ahead, but not in his own lifetime. By the time Jesus was leaving there were only 120 people. It could have looked like for all his ministry he didn’t succeed, but actually he had left 120 solid people. There was only 120, but those 120 are the reason that the gospel has become unstoppable today.

 

Could it be that God wants to do something with you? Could God put his hand on a life like yours and make you a fisher of men?

 

My desire is for God to help you to hear him saying, “You, follow me.” Eyes have not seen, nor ears have heard what he will do with you if he lays hold of your life.

 

“Lord, dig my life out until I become your bearer, your container, of water.”

You may say that you are too old now. I don’t think so. You don’t know what God will do and why he has kept you alive.

 

Pray two prayers tonight:

·         The challenges we are having in England are not a big matter for God.

·         The big matter is for God to find you; to lay hands on you and dig you out, so that what can break forth from a man like you can find a free flow.

 

If we were to rate Jesus the way we rate men these days, would we rate him a success? His name is above every other name, but the way he went was to pour into lives that seemed to be nothing.

 

 

2019-05-18 Sat

 

Session 2  Instrumentality of Discipleship for Revival  (10:00-11:30)

Gbile Akanni

 

We will review examples in the bible of the instrumentality of discipleship for revival, and what happens when this is omitted.

 

Pro 30:15-16  The leech has two daughters-Give and Give! There are three things that are never satisfied, Four never say, "Enough!":  (16)  The grave, The barren womb, The earth that is not satisfied with water-And the fire never says, "Enough!"

 

There are four things that never say, “It is enough.” No matter how much you try to satisfy them, they are never satisfied.

This raises a concern in my heart as to why we quickly say that it is enough. Why do we not long for more of Jesus, his salvation, redemption… when the grave never says that it is enough. There are so many millions in the grave, but still it doesn’t say that it has enough. Death, which kills and destroys has never been satisfied that it has killed enough men.

 

How can those of us who have the ministry of saving souls… how do we so quickly get satisfied and settle with the small things that we are doing, when people are still dying?

 

The barren womb has never come to a place where it says that it’s OK. No matter how worthy or highly educated a woman who is barren has become, when you get close to her, she has never stopped crying that she wishes that something would come out of her womb. Nothing else satisfies what is barren until there is fruitfulness. The barren womb never says, “It is enough.” It is a deep desire that God has placed in the hearts of men - the desire to be fruitful.

 

Is there any restlessness in your hearts that says, “How I wish, O God, to see more fruitfulness in my life.” It was God who created this desire in each one of us to be fruitful. If there is someone who is not desiring for productivity in his life, he is abnormal. The day that you don’t feel the need for more fruitfulness, then you are a backslider.

 

It was correct for God to create in you a restlessness for fruitfulness, and to make you uneasy when you sense you are not productive. I’m not talking about comparative productivity, the activity of the flesh which makes people want to be seen by men, but that genuine hunger is what creates the desire for revival. It’s a danger to come to a level in your life when there is no more hunger. I want you to thank God for it, and to learn to appreciate the fact that there’s something inside of you that is yearning for more.

 

Every genuine discipleship relationship always begins with hunger. Every time discipleship does not come out of a desire to touch more of Christ it becomes legalism and a mere routine, and it will become something wrong, like a personality cult. Discipleship, as an instrument for revival, just as revival itself, arises out of hunger for God himself, and hunger to see people reconciled to God.

 

If there is no hunger in our churches for spiritual growth…. I was looking at the life of John Wesley, and you may not know that Methodism was a discipleship movement. He had been awoken by the carnality of his life when he found himself on the ship among the Moravians in a storm. He was in fear, but he saw that they were not, and he was disturbed by this. One of those brothers led him to a saving faith in Christ Jesus. Once he returned, hunger for God and for holiness sparked in his life, and there were a few others who shared his hunger, so they met together to seek more of Jesus for their own personal lives.

 

As they met, the HS came down on them one day. Every revival has come about as a result of hunger. Revival is not cosmetic. Everywhere the Spirit of God began to move, people were [already] hungry for it.

 

“O Lord, when will you visit me?” It is that kind of cry that comes out of barrenness. The songs of Charles Wesley came out of a deep cry for God; they weren’t just singing them for the melody.

 

It was men who were seeking God who were coming to that “Holiness Club”. They were asking how to come to God in holiness, and John Wesley was teaching them. Some people would be struggling with one issue or another, perhaps a particular habit. They would meet together and open up together, and help each other. It was a kind of discipleship between people who were hungry for God.

 

What did Jesus actually do that became the worldwide move from the Day of Pentecost? It was discipleship. He wasn’t globetrotting. Sometimes it looked [very small], as if it would not work. He went to Galilee…

 

We are going to pray today: “God, renew and refresh my hunger.”

Unquenchable hunger is the beginning of a move of God in any man’s life.

 

Jesus’ method didn’t look conventional. He called Peter and Andrew who were brothers, and James and John, who were also brothers. Most of his disciples were from one town. Should he not have chosen people from many cities and nations, because, “We want to be international”? People asked how these Galileans could be instruments for a worldwide revival.

 

It didn’t matter that all the people that Jesus got came from one small town. That didn’t stop it from spreading worldwide. What matters is not geographical spread, but the lives which God affects in discipleship. If genuine fire falls on them, it cannot stop until it affects the whole world.

 

The major thing that Jesus did, which consumed most of his time, and the major teachings that came from his mouth, you will notice that they were spoken to those few disciples. Then entire Sermon on the Mount, which is the longest sermon which Jesus gave, was to those disciples.

 

I’m making the case why you should first give attention to discipleship to yourself, why you should expend all your energy, all that is within you, to raising disciples, because that is the only thing which will perpetuate revival.

 

Mat 5:1-2  And seeing the multitudes, He went up on a mountain, and when He was seated His disciples came to Him.  (2)  Then He opened His mouth and taught them, saying:

 

Normally, as a preacher you would think it is more strategic to address the multitude, to the extent that those of us who don’t have a multitude ministry feel depressed. Jesus had such a charismatic personality that he drew multitudes, but in order to teach he climbed a mountain, and his disciples came up to him.

 

From Matt Ch5 to Ch7 we see that Jesus taught. If you were not one of those disciples who went up the mountain to sit with Jesus, you would not have heard those words. But Jesus knew the strategic thing was to speak to those few. Even if you have a message that you wish the whole world to hear, the strategic thing is not to shout it. People may hear, but there would be no one accountable for what they do with that word. The strategic thing is to call some people who will be accountable for what they do with that word. So Jesus could say to them, “…make disciples of all nations… teaching them to obey all that I have commanded you.”

 

There is no future in programme after programme. We need to focus on people. Could it be that this is what we have missed? You can have a very large crowd which focusses on nobody. Could it be that this is what is not letting us see the continuity of what God wants to do?

 

I have been crying to God to show me his strategy, and his strategy is very profound. Even though we want to see Jesus, we don’t want to spend time doing what he did.

 

Mark 11:12-14, 20-26

We like to preach about faith that moves mountains, in order to provoke a faith response. But the context of those profound words of Jesus was while they were walking along the road together. They were living, eating, sleeping together. Jesus saw a fig tree with many leaves, so he went to pluck a fruit. The bible says he ran to it to eat, only to see that it was a tree with no fruit, and he said that nobody would eat anything from it again.

 

It was in a discipleship situation, not in a preaching situation. The next day they went along the road again and Peter saw that it was withered. Jesus then spoke to him about faith and prayer and forgiveness. He wasn’t using a microphone, and if anyone hadn’t been there they wouldn’t have heard what he said.

 

There is no other environment in which genuine life is formed except in the context of a life situation. Any situation which is organised, there may be a little benefit, but not much. Jesus wasn’t teaching faith in a vacuum, as a theory. He was teaching it in the context of life situations. [Peter saw the withered tree.]

 

If I want to teach someone to be a bible teacher, I can’t just gather all my students and tell them about hermeneutics, and tell them how to do the introduction of a message, and its body, conclusion, and altar call. It is nothing compared with taking Mihail and we are moving together, and chatting, and talking, and eating together, and then, without any fanfare I changed the atmosphere and gave a message, and a young man was saved. Mihail will ask “How did you do that? Did you plan to preach that message?”

 

The instrumentality for raising correct men for God is not in an artificial environment which has nothing to do with life. I’m not saying there is no usefulness at all, but it is very small. “What hear I forget; what I see I remember.”

 

It is in discipleship that genuine life is formed in the context of life. Jesus called the twelve and ordained them, that they should be with him (Matt 3:12). Jesus said, “I am the curriculum, the audio-visual which you must see. I am the life.” If you are able to spend time with someone who is doing things authentically, and you are able to ask authentic questions about what he is doing, you will learn better.

 

When Jesus wanted to raise men who would spearhead the move of tomorrow, he gave them a discipleship relationship. He knew each of them; he knew their temperaments. He heard their whisperings among themselves: “Who will be the greatest among us?” There was a leadership struggle going on among them. Discipleship doesn’t cow people in. Everywhere else, in a meeting there is a studied silence; you smile and behave, and I think you are following me, but you aren’t. Because they were with him all the time, they spoke freely. Discipleship allows you to be free. Jesus didn’t interrupt, but allowed their discussions to proceed. Later he asked them what they were discussing, and he addressed it. He called a small child to show them who would be the greatest. He didn’t start a theory, but first demonstrated something to them by washing their feet. Then he asked them about who was the greatest – having first served them. He then explained that the one to be the greatest must be the servant of all. His teaching had a practical element.

 

Many times you hold a meeting and answer questions that no one is asking. You talk about hierarchies of demons, and so the conversation becomes theoretical. Jesus didn’t introduce a sermon on “demonology and demon-casting”, but as they were gong along a demon confronted them and he cast it out. They said, “What manner of man is this, that even the demons obey him?” The Pharisees said it was by the prince of demons that he cast them out, so Jesus now explained about demons and how to cast them out, it’s relevance and context. He explained that you need a stronger man to cast out a strong man. People asked about how when they had delivered someone they sometimes ended up worse than before, so Jesus explained about this to them.

 

Jesus taught from the context of life, the context of experience. The instrumentality of discipleship for raising vessels for revival: we cannot undermine it. There is no other strategy that can compare with it, and every other method is more costly. This one is at almost no cost, except to you. You must make your life available, and you must allow people to see you, and to see through you.

 

The hunger that makes a man want to see more of God is the same hunger which makes him to want to go to where he can find it.

 

As we take our break, I want you to ask, “What is my hunger level?”

All these only come to a man who is hungry and thirsty. “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness.”

Hunger in the heart of a man who wants to raise men for God causes him to cry to God for someone to raise and that he won’t die before he has blessed someone.

 

We have looked at the grave and the barren womb. When we come back we will look at the ground that is never satisfied with water, and the fire, which both never say they have enough.

 

 

Session 3  The Process of Discipleship  (11:45-13:00)

Gbile Akanni

 

All spiritual gifts were meant to prepare God’s people until Christ is formed in them and until they attain to the fullness of the stature of Christ.

 

I would like to look a little at the process of discipleship itself.

First there is the hunger to want to walk more closely with the Lord – that is the basis. Then there is the hunger for revival.

 

We were dealing with Prov 30, and the first two things that never say it is enough. Now we will look at the second two.

 

Pro 30:16  The grave, The barren womb, The earth that is not satisfied with water-And the fire never says, "Enough!"

 

The earth that is dry, that has been caked with drought. When you pour water on it, it soaks it up, and releases heat, as if to say, “Give me more.”

Every dryness that we find in this country… on one hand, in my heart, I seem to see the land saying, “I need water.” It’s as if all the challenges that we see in this country are only a cry for the outpouring of water. Whether we see young people who are seemingly deranged, or whether we see people expounding theories – it’s only a cry for water, it’s only a cry for reality.

 

The other day I was watching the fact the people are exploring Islam in this country; not just the Asians, but also the English. They are asking if that could give them an answer. This kind of religion doesn’t seem reasonable, but yet still it can seem attractive to them because they are looking for an answer. They are crying for life.

 

How does discipleship help those who are seeking for freshness? What is the process?

 

Discipleship is the simplest, most cost-effective strategy. It can happen anywhere, without buildings, on the streets, in the workplace… It can take place in almost any situation. You don’t need costumes, you only need a heart that is hungry for God.

 

We will explore what is the process of discipleship and how it becomes an instrument from one generation to another. We will take several examples, but I always finish with Jesus, because the Father told us to look upon him. Every opportunity to look at Christ, his method and strategy, and his life, is always the right thing.

 

No matter how glamorous or apparently effective a work is, if it omits genuine discipleship, it will end with tears and will perish whatever God is doing with us.

 

Noah was a great man of God, but he lived in the midst of a generation that was completely corrupt and about which God said that he regretted making them. In the midst of them we read that Noah was righteous and walked with God. God was ready to destroy the whole world, but in the midst of them was one man that God could commit himself to.

 

Noah moved with fear and built an ark, and he did all that he did. But he did something which threatened what could have been a mighty move of God; there was an omission: his sons. There wasn’t the same transfer to them, and by the time that he died there was a generation that was building the Tower of Babel. Those people that God was going to drive out in the days of Moses, they came from the sons of Noah.

 

Whenever there is an omission of deliberate transfer… “The things that you have seen in me and can prove among many witnesses, commit it to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.” The point of the discipleship process and chain is so serious in the life of a man, such that as soon as God begins to raise up a man, the first thing he wants him to do is to raise up “replacement sons”. It is expected and mandatory that we labour to raise men unto whom we can commit the things we have learned and proved.

 

Jesus told his disciples to make more disciples, teaching them to obey all that they had been taught.

 

Three words which describe discipleship:

Describe, demonstrate, then do it.

 

Describe it – teach it.

Then go beyond that to demonstrate it in life situations which are real.

Then get them to do it.

 

By the time that Noah was finishing, there was none to take over, so after the Tower of Babel God had to look for another man, and he had to meticulously look for Abraham. God said he couldn’t withhold from Abraham, because he was a man who would teach his household.

 

As soon as Moses responded to God and returned to Egypt…

Beforehand, when Moses wanted to do the work on his own, killing Egyptians one by one. They asked him, “Who made you…?” and he couldn’t answer it. That is what took him to Jethro: he was trained under a priest, and under a shepherd. It would have been very difficult for him to be trained as a shepherd, having been raised in the palace of a people who hated shepherds. How could he have tolerated the Israelites, who were shepherds, if he grew up hating shepherds? He had made a great sacrifice to leave the palace, but he couldn’t have led shepherds, so God took him out, and he was discipled for 40 years, though I’m not saying it needs to take you 40 years.

 

It took 40 years of preparation, but it only took 40 days to get them out of Egypt, and if it wasn’t for their disobedience, it wouldn’t have taken long to enter into the Promised Land. Even if God takes years to prepare you, it won’t take long to fulfil your ministry.

 

Many are so eager to serve God, but they are not eager for an adequate preparation of what heaven would do with their lives.

 

God did not think it a waste to invest another 40 years in Moses.

It was OK for God to spend 30 years preparing John the Baptist for a ministry that only lasted 6 months.

Many times, when we should be under God’s hand in preparation, we are struggling to accomplish in ministry what we don’t have capacity to accomplish.

 

There were some young men who followed Moses: Joshua and Caleb. There were these people who he attracted. His method of discipleship was that they went with him. Sometimes God told Moses to go up the mountain, and they went with him.

 

Even in those early days, the process of raising men to carry the fire of anointing was not delayed until their death-bed. Sometimes it is when someone is about to die that they look for someone to take over – simply because discipleship had been omitted. When you have invested in discipleship, a leadership change is never a challenge.

 

When God told Moses that he wasn’t to go across the Jordan, he asked God who would take over as a shepherd of the people. God told him it would be Joshua, in whom was the Spirit of God. Joshua wasn’t there at the burning bush, but he was there with him so much. Joshua had learned how to climb a mountain with Moses. There were questions which Joshua would have been able to ask Moses that were not asked in the multitude. He would have been taken to the place of prayer with Moses, so we see a Joshua who was already developing a personal altar. He was taking opportunity to be with Moses, and to learn of Moses, and to learn the will of God.

 

But there was a very sad comment when Joshua was dying. As mighty as he was as a warrior, and as great as his prayers were, such that the sun stood still for him, there was no one that he had prepared to take over from him.

 

Joshua told the people to choose who they would serve, but as for him and his house he would serve the Lord. It sounds like a good statement, but when it is put in the context of the valedictory speech of a man who had led Israel for 40 years and who was going to die and leave a vacuum…

 

I looked at the valedictory speech of his own master, and that is not how it was. He said, “Here is Joshua, and Eliezer the Priest will walk with him.” But Joshua left no one, and when the Book of Judges opened there was no leader, and the people were asking who would go up to battle first, and they had to cast lots.

 

The bible noted that after the death of Joshua and the elders who outlived him, there arose another generation who were ignorant of God, his miracles, and his oracles. They saw the gods of the other nations and began to flirt with them. It wasn’t up to 20 years by the time that all that great work of Joshua was finished. We saw that the Book of Judges (and Jonathan Carter has preached on this) was a cycle: they would suffer under the nations, God would deliver them, and then they would go back to evil again. This was because of a lack of discipleship, so that leaders were not raised to continue the work. We read that everyone did as they pleased.

 

When you omit discipleship, you bring the work of God back to zero, and people have to ask, “How do we start again?”

 

I must say to you that buildings are good. I’m talking from my own experience, whenever there’s a growing work there are a few things that come along:

1.       The need for facilities increases.

2.       The need for equipment increases, and so the need for projects multiplies, and these are evidence that God is visiting his work. A work that is not growing doesn’t need a bigger building.

3.       We can get drowned in projects and miss the people.

 

The need for bigger buildings and the miracles of provision for them, they are all part of revival, but while they look good, they can also be a distraction, if they distract us from pursuing discipleship.

 

When men who are graceless end up on the platform, they will empty it of every grace that it had.

 

Can I ask you, as a leader in any capacity, what priority must I set?

1.       Take every opportunity for my own discipleship and preparation, as an ongoing experience and exposure to God, and an ongoing hunger.

 

If you want to be involved in the work of God, your hunger for God must be kept sharp; your hunger for exposure to the presence and life must continually increase. Any opportunity of touching and rubbing on lives is an opportunity for discipleship.

 

Any man who wants to go higher must have a deeper training in Christ Jesus. Anyone who is involved in the work of God, and you are desiring that this work will not wither and shrink in your hand, the next thing to do is to engage in genuine, unprocrastinated discipleship. If you wait until one year before you retire, you are too late.

 

The first day you arrive in a parish, you must be asking God to give you people whom you will prepare for the coming days.

 

Some of us have done discipleship. That’s a good point, and I thank God for it. “When Joshua died, and all the elders which outlived him…” When your contemporaries are dying – when you and your contemporaries are giving your children in marriage, and making plans to bury their parents – if you did discipleship with people of commensurate age with you, you are not preparing for your future. You need to go down and look for younger men.

 

I am looking at men I have discipled who are doing well, but I have noted that we are becoming old. Discipleship is a process that should never stop. Even when you have succeeded with men that God has given you, take on another set. Where are your Timothys; have you got any Joshuas; have you thought of any Esthers?

 

Can I send you out from here, both to look out for your own exposures, and also for those Timothys, Titus’s and Dorcas’s that heaven may raise to take over the work? You need to pray for the Lord to give you people who can stand where you are standing now.

 

I want us to stop and pray to God about this. Even if you have to leave at this point, can you do this in your own heart [as you go]?

 

Others may not see this need, but you need to pray this way.

 

 

Session 4  Q&A / Open Discussion  (14:30-16:00)

Gbile Akanni

 

John Parker:

1.       In the Methodist Church in 1815 in the USA, 35% of the population were Methodists, and so the leadership decided to end the class system, and that ended discipleship, and the Methodists in the US have never been the same.

 

2.       In the UK, we often meet weekly to study the bible or to use {Gbile’s] resources, but there is a shortage of the relational aspects.

 

Gbile:

I was in Ghana earlier this year, with the Methodists, and we were looking at the return of the Methodists through discipleship. We were looking at how we restore the values that brought the revival in those days. We saw that there’s no other way to explore and engage genuine discipleship but to go back to the bible. The Methodists have “circuits”, and this came about because people were meeting, but they didn’t have sufficient teachers. It was a continuous discipleship for the “circuit teachers”; they were studying together among themselves what they were about to go out to teach the people.

 

I know that in this part of the world you are struggling with time, and with connection with each other, but I must tell you that there is no shortcut to life-on-life if you want to experience discipleship. While I applaud your use of Skype etc., with due respect to your efforts, it will not produce life.

 

It looks easier, but discipleship is more engaging. If you spend one day with a life in his context, you will have known more about that life than many weekly meetings, especially ones that are virtual.

 

Don’t aim at largeness. Jesus just invited 12 to be with him. It takes strategy to understand to pour your life on 12, and to do it well, rather than to struggle with 500. Those 12 will become your best interpreters; they will interpret your message and your life, because they have seen it. When Jesus gave himself to what he did, he was looking to what would be the aftermath, and what it would produce. He saw that one Peter who had been deeply affected could preach and bring 3000 to him, and those 3000 would then study house to house [not in big meetings].

 

If we are seriously contemplating a genuine revival in a few years to come, and we really sincerely want to do it, and not just be playing around with it, then we must give attention to it. If we can do one-to-one then that would be good. Even if we have weekly meetings, but it leads to interpersonal relationships then it can become something.

 

We must start somewhere. We must be very deliberate. It will be very costly: it will cost your time and your space, but it will be worth it. The time we spend will not be wasted.

 

As an example, when we were to start the work in Nigeria, we realised that we didn’t have enough vessels, so we prayed sincerely. We had read several books on revival. One day as I was praying, “Lord, send revival” he asked me, “To where?” He showed me that he regards it as a waste to send the rain where there are no vessels to carry it. I looked at examples of when revival came but there were insufficient vessels to carry it, and I saw that it became corroded, and sometimes even worse than before. So I asked God to give me 20 years to raise vessels.

 

Two weeks ago I was very delighted because some young ladies came all the way from Ghana, along with others, for our leadership development for young people. One of them was schooling in Russia, and she met a man in Russia who had also been in our school in Gboko. He was teaching about discipleship and so she went up to him and said, “You are speaking as if you are a disciple.” He asked if she was also a disciple and they discovered that they both knew Bro. Shittu, who is now in Ghana. I remembered that Bros. Shittu and Charles had asked me to pray for a young man who was going to Russia, and this was that man. He was teaching the New Creation Man course there in Russia, and it is being very effective. I have never been to Russia, but if we spend time on one life we may find it more effective than if we go somewhere ourselves.

 

 

Mihail:

How can we start discipleship in a new country?

 

Gbile:

It doesn’t have to be a new country, but any new area.

 

1.       You can only give what you have received.

The best way is to send a man who is yearning to raise disciples.

 

The other way is to take a “Mihail” [from that area] who can take some time to come for “incubation” and then go back to start discipleship.

 

So, we can step into a nation, by going and staying (because Jesus came and dwelt among us). We can go and “incarnate” – perhaps learn the language – and become one of them. We did this in Liberia. At first I sent people for a few weeks at a time, and they came back, but I realised that is not effective. So, we sent some people who went for a few months, but that still wasn’t enough, so we sent a couple to go and live there. They are now raising disciples, who are Liberians, and who are themselves now beginning to raise disciples. There are now around 1,200 people who are disciples in Liberia.

 

Where that isn’t possible, we can “import” a life which can become contagious, and when he goes back he can spread the life.

 

 

Paul:

[Gbile had earlier asked him how long, i.e. for how many years, he would stand there doing the video – in the context of when he would raise his replacement.]

Re. how long I will stand here doing the video.

He pointed at a young boy and said that he is the future.

 

Gbile:

If you want to multiply yourself, you must count damage as part of raising disciples. They will scatter some of your good structures and tamper with some of your good things. We need to be confident in God that it is better for a few things to be scattered than for the future to be scattered. We must be willing to allow young people to grow, even if it is irritating and some of our structures are disturbed.

 

I saw the patience of Jesus. Peter was not perfect, but Jesus saw what he would become.

 

 

Q:

Gbile was talking about having a hunger and asking God to guide us in what to do. I settled down with my wife and was in a good place spiritually. I now have to change my plans and will be asking God for guidance. I was thinking that if I had had a “Plan B” I would be better off, but if we make plans and also have a plan B, does that mean our faith is weak.

 

Gbile:

When you are walking with God and are committed to him, you don’t have a plan B, because a double-minded man is unstable in all he does and won’t receive anything from God. It blocks you from receiving something from God.

 

What would have helped you to find the will of God properly would have been a discipleship relationship. When we have spiritual oversight, there is someone to bounce things off and who helps us to check things objectively. Once you become sentimental about something, it’s difficult to discern the will of God about it. What makes you sentimental may not just be within you, it may be about “What will other people think about it?”

 

If you are in a discipleship relationship, someone who is passionate about you will help you to look into God on that matter and he will help you to discover the will of God.

 

Someone who is independent – and I use that word carefully, because discipleship is not a dependence-syndrome – but an independent person doesn’t want any input from anyone else, and discipleship is a challenge to them. In this society, we have been taught that independence is a value, and no one can invade your space. This spirit of independence, which this generation is treating as a virtue, is a weakness. You never give room for anyone to make any input into your life.

 

Discipleship is to help you to come to a good place where they are not eroding you, you are not dependent on them, but they are helping you to come to a good place in your life. A discipleship relationship doesn’t erode you or make you a robot, but it enhances your ability to hear God, and it provides checks and balances which can help you if you are moving off course.

 

As an example, I would not have married correctly, and that would have been the damage of my life, and you would not see me here now. Because we were growing in the word of God, I had a brother who was always standing with me, and when he was making his choice of wife I saw his struggles and challenges. He was a good preacher, and so it was that young ladies who were Christians were drawn to him. He wasn’t careful about how he handled their affection. He was equally intimate with all of us, and it caused a problem, because several of them felt that he loved them. He realised he had made a mistake and he shared that with me.

 

Discipleship isn’t that we are always perfect. In that relationship we are free to help others by sharing our mistakes. We don’t need disciplers who are perfect, but those who are real. We can help people to avoid the mistakes we have made.

 

When he shared his mistake, I made a commitment with him that before I chose a wife I would confer with him. There was a sister who looked very promising, but every time I wanted to take a step, something inside me told me that I hadn’t honoured my promise to him. I wasn’t going to see him for some weeks, but I knew I had to wait. When I saw him I quickly said that we had to discuss. He smiled and said, “Bro. Gbile, I know what you are going to say, and we need to pray more.” I booked a room to pray for three days, and I had not gone one day before God told me it wasn’t of him. I told God, “But it came with fire.” God said, “It’s a strange fire.” I went to report to my discipler and told him that it was a strange fire. He said that he knew, and that’s why he said I needed to pray more.

 

Disciplers are not lords over your faith, they only help you in your walk with God. It doesn’t rob you of your ability to relate with God. A discipler must never overshadow the Lord in your life. A discipler only stands along, helping to connect the bride and the groom [Jesus]. In God’s plans, he intends that his children should be so helped. It is God’s will that everyone should have a “senior brother” or sister who can come alongside. They are like tutors or governors who help you to arrive at the will of God for your life.

 

 

Paul:

What do you look for when you consider someone for discipleship?

 

Gbile:

Because your hunger is for Jesus, you must look for someone who helps you to see Jesus. You must not have someone who is opaque, who blocks you from seeing Jesus. Does his life point me to Christ each time I meet him? does his environment bear Christ’s presence and likeness to my heart.

 

Even if you have started following someone in discipleship and he is no longer following Christ, or he has started doing things which are contrary to Christ, then the time has come to terminate that relationship. You are not following him to hell. If he asks you why, you can tell him, “Because I am no longer seeing Christ in you.” It’s not being rude; it’s just being frank.

 

There may be times when you cannot “access” the Christ-character that he carries if you do not enter into his environment. That is why people sometimes come and travel with me and drive me. He’s not driving because he’s my driver, but because it may be his only opportunity to have time with me. He has entered into my environment because he is driving, and we can have some discussion while we are travelling. So, look for opportunities that will put you in their environment. Don’t stay aloof and wait for them to “come and disciple me”. Jesus said, “Follow me…” and because they did so, they had access to his life.

 

Conversely, what should a discipler look for in someone who they may disciple?

Number one, and this is not at all negotiable, they must be hungry for God. How easy is it to feed someone who is not hungry? If you ask them to come with you for discipleship and they say, “Why?” it means they aren’t hungry.

 

If they follow you, and they are hungry, they will be willing, and so discipleship is always voluntary. Where there is no voluntariness, and you have to drag them, it’s not discipleship, it’s oppression.

 

A hungry person is teachable. “Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me.” It’s the hunger which releases what the discipler has to offer, otherwise you will be struggling to give what the person isn’t looking for.

 

Don’t look for ability – because if a person is capable, they don’t need discipleship. It’s not ability, but availability.

 

 

Q:

If someone comes to church and then stops coming, should you forget about them?

 

Gbile:

No, the love of the Saviour does not give up on a soul so quickly. The first thing is if their heart has encountered Jesus, and if they have, they will be hungry to come back. You must invest in prayer for them.

 

Follow them up. They may give you excuses and lies. Don’t worry, God will bring him back. Don’t give up on a soul. What you see of a man today doesn’t tell anything about what he can become tomorrow in the hand of God.

 

Q:

When projects grow and we begin to neglect discipleship, are there any signs that this is beginning to happen?

 

Gbile:

1.       You no longer have time for people. Hearts of men no longer touch you. Achievement touches you.

To spend time on a soul is the most precious aspect of discipleship. When you see a crowd and you are happy to see the crowd, but you no longer see individuals.

 

2.       The next parameter is when you focus on budgets and gadgets.

Discipleship is costly, and there are times that we must spend money on people; you may need to spend on their needs so that they can settle down to receive from you.

 

3.       You lose touch; you are no longer touching people.

You become general rather than particular. You become used to preaching generally, but you have no patience to preach anything that touches an individual. When you are asked to preach, you ask how many will be there, and if it’s only a few you send a junior brother.

 

Jesus was becoming very popular, but he went to Samaria, which was not a palatable audience, just to meet one woman. She was an unrighteous woman, and she spoke disrespectfully to him, but he was relaxed. We would have intimidated her with our word of knowledge about her husbands, but Jesus saved it until she came under conviction and was ready to hear it [not to put her down, but to build her up].

 

Osa:

How have you managed to remain so simple all these years, since you have become well known?

 

Gbile:

What else would a reasonable Christian like to become? We see Jesus humble and approachable. Does anyone have greater anointing that Jesus? It was only he who was given the Spirit without measure. It would be unreasonable for any of us to become anything different. It is a foolish man who boasts about what he did not pay for, about what he received freely. If you keep your eye focussed on Jesus, you will not see any reason to deviate. If you keep your eye single and simple on Jesus you will not deviate. Anything else becomes a problem. You may become sophisticated, but you have to wear a mask, and that’s more difficult than being simple.

 

 

Gbile:

Has this day been useful? Should we look at doing this another time, if the Lord will use us? Can this be built upon?

 

We call this region East Anglia. Can we extend to reach more of the region, as a deliberate attempt to increase the discipleship burden? Should we do it again; do we need to expand it; do we need to shrink it?

 

Bob: Could we add a workshop dimension?

Gbile:

 

Q: Could we make it a yearly conference?

Gbile: I’m afraid of that. [Gbile doesn’t like meetings to be held out of routine.]

 

Bob: Could we bring the three venues together, as a form of outreach?

Gbile: We have actually worked in those areas, and there are meetings in those areas, but the brethren who you see here are Resource Persons who have come to stand with us and to see how they can resource the meeting. There will be meetings there next week, but the one here is focussed on East Anglia. If we were to do something more national we would all meet together. We have done that in times past, and we will so again if the Lord leads us to do so.

 

 

We thank Faith Mission and Stephen Walker for this venue.

 

East Anglia has experienced a move of God many years back. We want to pray that the Lord will visit this land afresh. Let’s pray that this valley here will be full of ditches.