Saturday, February 24, 2007

Receiving and Releasing

One of the most important aspects of the Abiding Life is to receive well from God as the starting place for all activity for God.
As Jesus said in John 6 "This is the work of God that you believe in Him who He has sent." To believe is to receive. In order to believe we have to drop our barriers and accept what is coming our way as good and true. To abide is to always be looking to Jesus as the source of what good and true and brings life. He is all that and more!

Once we begin to learn to receive well our lives pick up speed of activity not in order to receive but in order to release what has been received. We work from and not for. We see ourselves releasing what grace has provided freely. This kind of activity is not nearly as stressful to the one working. It is not so stressful because the pressure to produce has been replaced by the joy of receiving.

When groups of people live this kind of reality together, the most amazing exhanges of life and resources begin to occur. Suddenly we become interconnected by releasing what we have received. A community of intense and joyful receiving and releasing is made visible and God is glorified.

The pictures attached to this blog are the result of a community of branches receiving and releasing together. As we have connected with God's desire to release we have been connected together in a wonderful ministry of releasing together. Pam and I are joyfully releasing in Brazil into a visible construction project where people will come to be taught to abide. As they abide they, too, will release with us and our Vineyard will grow and grow here in Brazil and across the world.

If you are not in this enjoyable process with us it is simple to join. Just ask the Father in the name of Jesus to give you something to release for others through Abide Brazil. When it comes, release it and we promise to pray the same prayer about you and your world. We want to be connected with you through God!

The pictures show what will soon be the Abiding Life Training Center in the mountain city of Campos do Jordãõ here in Brazil. It is on the camp property where our retreats will be held. This remodeled house will also be the site of our first ever Abiding Coaches training here in Brazil August 9-19, 2007. We hope to host at least 15 people from the USA and other countries who want to learn to be capable of discipling others in the Abiding Life Jesus described in John 15.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Orlando Marriage Seminar

Nearly two years ago a group of families were sent out from the First Baptist Church of West Hollywood to begin the Church@theVine in Kissimmee, Florida. Today that church numbers over 100 and is having a great impact on the community.
Pastor Billy Rollins and the church plant team invited Pam and I to conduct their first ever marriage seminar.

It was amazing that a church of just over 100 could gather 20 couples for a six hour course. It was beautiful to see a new church touching so many lives.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Miami Marriage Seminar

Pastor Russell Johnson and the entire International Bible Baptist Church family in Miami, Florida hosted a Six Metaphors of a Happy Marriage Seminar taught by Bud McCord the weekend of February 2nd-3rd. Over 50 couples representing six area churches participated in the six hour course.

The IBB team not only hosted the conference in cooperation with Abide Brazil ministries, they also translated the course into Spanish. The seminar was simultaneously translated from English to Spanish.

The course is designed for use in Abide Partner churches to enhance their ministries to couples in their church and surrounding community. Plans are already "in the works" for January and February 2008 to see the course given in 8 Abiding Partner churches to bless couples and support the Abide Brazil seminar ministry in Brazil.