Saturday 6:00 pm: The turnout at today’s seminar was strong, with around 100 people eventually getting to the meeting. I shared some things I’ve never talked about before in a public context. The presentation was not polished, it was a bit scattered, but at least it was fresh and heartfelt. At the close I shared some principles from Joseph’s life. Joseph is an great example for stewardship in the marketplace. The Joseph prison precedes national stewardship because He doesn’t want to use us and then lose us.
Next: I will be collected Sunday at 9:30 a.m. for the 10:00 a.m. service. The service runs 10:00-12:20 pm. (I am speaking in just one of their three Sunday services.) Then I will have a lunch on the church premises with some of the leaders. Then off to the airport, for a 6:00 p.m. departure.
Sunday 5:00 p.m.: Greetings from the Seoul airport, where I am checked in and waiting for my flight to board. It’s been a great day. Strong confirmation of the Holy Spirit in the ministry of the word. Meaningful connection and response. A good day in the Lord’s house!
I was able to speak 7 times in 8 days on this trip, and here’s the amazing thing: On Friday, which was my day for vocal rest, I felt like I could have spoken that day without a problem. So the Lord has definitely given me more strength than I had 10 years ago. I’m so grateful! I have more strength and less pain than I had 10 years ago, for which I give thanks to God.
Next: I’m ministering at a church in NW Pennsylvania this coming Sat/Sun (about an hour from Erie), and will have the special joy of having my parents join me for this excursion.
Monday afternoon: Greetings from the north side of Seoul, where we are now settled into our dormitory lodging for the Last Runner Conference. The rooms here are heated through the floor, and in time my room should warm, but in the meantime it’s taking the longest time to warm up. So I have my jacket on until then. I have my own private room, which is nice. My hunch is that some of the kids will be lodging several to a room.
On our way here, our hosts treated us to Korean BBQ. Just amazing! The stoves are built right into your dining table, so you cook your beef right there at your fingertips.
Monday 11:30 p.m.: First session went well. On entering the Holiest through the blood of Christ. Good flow, good response. Jaye and the team did a super job leading worship. The conference is off to a good start.
Tuesday morning: When I first visited South Korea, which I believe was in 2000, there was much talk among believers of the hope of reunification with the North. The church prayed constantly toward that end, and in fact the great prayer movement of South Korea seemed to stem from this national desperation for divine intervention. The tone in South Korea in 2016 is different. The youth in South Korea today don’t carry a passion for reunification like their parents did. In fact, they tend to oppose the idea, because they see the North as a nation that is hostile to everything they represent, and in the event of reunification would become a huge financial drain. The change in attitude is striking.
Tuesday afternoon: I have a good report — I am doing much better with the cold. It seems like it’s in its final throes. Thanks for praying!
Tuesday 11:00 p.m.: Wonderful night. I spoke on multitude-driven worship, after which time we had a prayer line “fire tunnel” style, and everyone received impartational prayer. It’s late now, so good night.
Wednesday 10 a.m.: I’m enjoying a prayer walk right now, back and forth in the hallway of this dormitory. The halls are unheated, so I have my winter jacket on and am walking, reading, and praying. Going from the cold hallway to one’s warm room is quite a difference. Walking on a warm floor in our room is really very nice. (the heating is through the floors)
Wednesday midnight: I’m finally back to my room after a long meeting. They told me in advance to take the time I needed, so I relaxed and let the Eye Covenant message have its own cadence. Afterwards, I think just about the whole room came forward for impartational prayer. These saints are so eager, they’re ready to say YES! A very sweet spirit was in the house tonight, so my heart is filled with thanksgiving.
And now I’m hitting the hay. At 8:00 a.m. I am to go with a group to go out for “traditional Korean breakfast.”
Friday noon: I’m sitting in my hotel room and eating a Papa Johns pizza! My hosts dropped off the pizza to my room for lunch, they are spoiling me beyond measure here. This morning we were driven from the conference dormitory back to the hotel in which we first lodged upon arrival into Korea. I am in a very delightful, modern room for my final two days here. Today is a “day off” for me, so I am doing no speaking today, and will have the day to myself at the hotel. And I have much to do. Last night was the closing service of the conference, and I spoke on “it’s not business, it’s personal.” I really don’t have a way to evaluate how this conference was for my hosts and those who attended, but I had a marvelous time with them.
Up next for me: Tomorrow I am teaching a class for people in the marketplace. This is actually the first time I’ve been asked to speak to this kind of group, so I’ve been stretching and reaching to prepare for that session. My preparation feels rather weak to me right now, so I’m asking the Lord to add His muscle to it, thanks for agreeing in prayer.
I forgot to tell you in yesterday’s email that the Korean translation of A COVENANT WITH MY EYES was printed just last week, just in time to be made available for this conference. So when I preached on that topic, I was able to recommend the book to them as an additional and enduring resource. I was so pleased that I could do so, so pleased that the publishers got it done in time. Please pray for this Korean translation, that the Lord would take it as far as He might desire among Korean readers.
Friday: This morning I am making my way to Seoul, Korea (via Tokyo). I am returning to the conference where I ministered last year, called the Last Runner Conference. And am speaking in a couple churches on the weekends surrounding the conference. Here’s the ministry schedule at a glance:
Sunday: Chueum Church, Bucheon
Mon-Thurs: Last Runner Conference, Seoul
Sat-Sun: The Cross Church, Seoul
Jaye Thomas was there with me last year, and is returning with me again this year, big smile.
I am aware of needing the strength and help of your prayers. I am unsettled and unprepared on at least four of the upcoming sessions, which means I will be seeking the Lord as the week progresses for clarity on the direction to take in each session. Thank you for pushing in the Holy Spirit!
First up is a 2:30 p.m. service on Sunday at a church in Bucheon, which is in the metro Seoul area. It is a young adult service.
Sunday evening: The trip to Korea was good, except that my rose was runny and I didn’t feel so good. And we had a 2-hour delay taking off from Tokyo because of heavy rain. But all in all, it was a good trip. My host, Paul, collected me at 12:45 pm today and drove me to the church in Bucheon. He is also my interpreter for the week. I spoke on the book of Habakkuk, going through the book and laying out its message. Paul did an excellent job of translation. I have no idea what significance or relevance the message had for the young people, but felt constrained of the Lord to stay on course. Afterwards they treated me to a lovely Korean dinner.
I am grateful that I’ve only had to use a few Kleenexes today, the nose is quieting down. On the hour drive back to the hotel, I ended up napping during most of the commute. We’re doing the jet lag thing here, smile.
We will be collected tomorrow (Monday) at noon. We are checking out of our hotel here, and being relocated to a dormitory that is by the conference venue. We will return to this hotel Thursday night once the conference is over. By “we,” I am referring to Jaye Thomas and Richard Town, who are here from IHOPKC and ministering with me this week. I will be speaking for the next four evenings at the Last Runner Conference. So the next meeting is Monday night.
This weekend I’m ministering in a K.C. church called The Cause Church of Kansas City. My son Joel and his family have made this their home church in the past year, hence my connection with this church. When they realized I had this Sunday open, this date was suddenly thrown together. They have a Saturday 5:30pm service, and three on Sunday morning (9:30, 11:00, 12:30). They’re located on the Plaza (for those who know the KC area). The church is around 7 years old, and is already running 1000 people, amazing. It’s a very young congregation, I’m told, with a lot of people who are new to the kingdom of God. It’s going to be a great way to launch ministry in 2016!
Sunday 6:30 pm: Four excellent services this weekend. The worship team is energetic, passionate. The congregation is youthful and eager. I spoke on “eternal perspective on your trial,” using the examples of Joseph, Caleb, and Jesus to illustrate God’s eternal perspective on our trials. The grace of the Lord was evident to all of us. My heart is filled with thanksgiving.
Now I’m voting for the Broncos, for one simple reason: They are my son-in-law’s team.
Tuesday 9:30 a.m.: Greetings from my hotel room, where I will be hanging today until I am collected at 4:30 p.m. Because of the language barrier, there’s little sense in my attempting to take in other sessions earlier today, so I will go in time for my 5:30 pm session today. We had 2 sessions last night to launch this event. At 5:30 pm Ithiel spoke, a young evangelist from Spain (I met him when I was there 2 weeks ago) who is extremely popular as a conference speaker. He spoke on Abraham and Isaac, and how true worshipers will offer up the thing that is most precious to them, rather than making an idol of their Isaac. Then I spoke on an eye covenant. They had a change of facility for this event, and this new facility seems to be working OK, except that it is long and narrow. The people seated in the back are REALLY in the back. The place was crammed with about 3000 young people last night, and they were estimating that yet another 500 pre-registered people will be showing up today, and they’re trying to figure out where to put them. (they had to stop accepting registrations, a great problem to have, smile) The nature of the seating configuration meant that some people in the back didn’t even attempt to get to the front to respond to the messages brought. There’s strong energy in the Spirit at this event, everyone seems real ready for everything God wants to do. A precious time, with precious people!
Tuesday 11:30 p.m.: Had a marvelous session this afternoon. I spoke on the cross, and showed The Passion DVD on the screen behind me as I spoke. Then we ended with Communion. A powerful time. I posted a clip of the hall on my public figure FB page. I have an early morning, 6 a.m. hotel shuttle to the airport. Then Saturday off to West Haven, CT.
Saturday: Dear prayer team, I’m on my way to Ciudad Mexico (Mexico City), where I will be once again be with pastor Alejandro Escobedo and the saints at Conquistando Church. (on the southeast side of the metro area) The meetings will be held at an arena because their local church facility can’t accommodate this event. Sunday will be an annual gathering for all the Conquistando churches, and I will be doing just one of the services on Sunday. I think they will be having a total of 3 different services tomorrow. Then on Monday thru Wednesday they are having a youth conference at the same venue, an event called EXJ Youth Explosion. This event will draw youth from a wide radius in Mexico. I am scheduled to speak once daily at this event on Monday and Tuesday, and then plan to return home on Wednesday.
I have prepared three messages:
Sunday: God is writing a story with your life
Monday: Eye covenant
Tuesday: The Cross
Please agree with me in prayer for a strong anointing that moves God’s people forward in their inheritance
Saturday 6:00 p.m.: Greetings from Mexico City, where I am settled in my room. We dropped off my bags at my room, then my airport driver walked me 3-4 blocks down the street to a large market — because I wanted to get a couple papayas. I’ve never seen a market with so many flowers for sale. Turns out, it’s one of the largest flower markets in all of CDMX. Vendor after vendor, in this vast, unending market. The flowers were simply dazzling. We walked through the flowers section to get to the fresh fruit section. I got my papayas, and another fruit that I need to find the name for. To go to that market was to experience Mexico City in its most authentic sense. Just amazing.
I have learned of some changes for this event. They were not able to secure the arena they wanted for this event, so they are punting. The Sunday services will be in their regular sanctuary, as regularly scheduled, and I will speak in the second and third services. Then the Youth Explosion will take place in some kind of a make-shift facility — it sounds like they’re erecting some kind of tent somewhere. I don’t know what to expect. Outdoor venues are very difficult for the sound team to capture my voice, so it remains to be seen exactly what is happening. Thanks for your prayers.
In the meantime, I’ve just slaughtered an entire papaya, singlehandedly.
Sunday 8:00 p.m.: I’m back from a wow dinner at an Argentine restaurant. In the USA, Brazil is more famous for its beef than Argentina, but in the latino world, Argentina wins all the accolades. Primarily because their beef is grass fed and just the most tender beef you might imagine. Now, while we were served in the cuisine and style of Argentina, the beef itself was not imported. So it was excellent, but not as excellent as the beef in Argentina itself. At least, that was the word according to the Argentine brother who sat at the table with us.
First service this morning was covered by pastor Vincent Fernandez of France. I covered second and third services. The title was, “God is writing a story with your life.” I ended with my baseball story. There were around 15 first-time decisions for Christ between the two services. They’re pulling in the nets here in Mexico, it’s just wonderful. Every time you cast the net you catch something. The saints here receive me so warmly, the affection in the body of Christ is just so amazing.
I am speaking tomorrow (Monday) in the evening service. On an eye covenant. Some will have the heard message already, but I’m bringing it primarily for those who wouldn’t have heard it when I was here last month at the leadership conference.