Never Give Up

I have preached more than once on the theme of "SHIFT".  I am aware of the Lord's desire to shift things into a new gear for the road ahead.  As it works out, this message is also becoming a primary revelation in our own ministry as well.  In reviewing the last few years of ministry, Martha and I see a pattern of increased influence and activity.  Last year was full, and as things appear this year shall be fuller.  But we became aware of a need to shift from one level to another.  Our thoughts were along the lines that we could continue to move along at the pace and level of influence we currently enjoy, or we could go on to a new level of influence and fruitfulness.  We chose to accept the upward call one more time, and promptly found ourselves immersed in God's desire to deepen our capacity to bring forth further things.
       God began to point out limitations, hindering mind sets, and some deep soul issues that we have lived with for many years that keep us from being all that we can be.  For me, it reached a crises moment of an intensity that I have not endured for a long time.  And to think that we actually asked God to do these things for us.  For the first time ever in the thirty-plus years of ministry I was confronted with a series of emotions, failures, and inabilities that all added up to a declaration that said, "this far and no further, so just quit".  Giants that I had held at bay for some time all chimed in with shouts of judgment against my soul.  Since then, I have named that day, Melt Down Monday, and I hope I never have to be there again.  Thank God for Martha who was there with me, and for others that have helped me recover from the devastation of those moments.  During that morning I felt stripped of all motivation, all vision, all momentum, and all sense of self-worth.  Thank God it didn't last long. I don't know how I would have survived if it did.  It was like a spiritual tsunami.  After the wave rolled in, it rolled out, leaving me numb and undone.  But by the grace of God, a new resolve immerged to walk out from those moments, facing my greatest fears, slaying my biggest giants, and facing my worst failures by faith.  The bottom line was reached that says, "that good work that was begun in me by faith, will be perfected in me by faith."  I don't think I will ever be the same. All that could be shaken in me was shaken, and yet I remain to see the day of the Lord.  
       So why did I share all of this.  To let you know that God is faithful, who will do what He has promised, and that He is proving Himself strong in us.  He is restoring and renewing vision and strategy in us.  He does this through a lot of encouragement from many folks to build up a determination to be all and do all we are called to be and do more than ever before.  We can expect to receive some very life giving words of prophecy to help us on the way. When we give ourselves time to spend in the Word we can expect that patterns and distinctives will emerge for us to walk in for many days to come.  This is yet another example of how God first works in us before He can work through us.  The higher we desire to go in the upward call of God in Christ Jesus, the deeper the searching out of our hearts and acceptance of the cross in our lives there must be.  
       I am looking forward to the unfolding of the things God has promised us with a new expectation to see our God in action.  I am longing for our full inheritance in Christ Jesus, and for the completion of things that have been birth in us, through His grace, to birth them through us.  We are beginning to see what this new level of ministry looks like, and all that it implies.  As we set in motion things that have been revealed to us, it will impact us and those we serve for years to come.            …Darryl



It seems we went through this "melt down Monday" in our marriage this past year. Not long after celebrating our 25th anniversary, we ran into a time of extreme meltdown in our relationship. We both knew what we wanted our relationship to be, and were totally frustrated in how to get there! God has used this time to turn a good marriage into a better one, as we are shifting to a new level of building our relationship and drawing closer to eachother. Sometimes it takes that meltdown to realize that in our own strength we just can't get there, but He knows the way....
Thanks for sharing your ups AND downs...
Cheryl M