The Ministry of Holy Spirit

Blog In Audio:

Greetings;

The process of Christianity is one of abiding in Christ and Christ abiding in us. As leaders we must set an example to those we lead in being a dwelling place for God in His Spirit. We cannot be the dwelling place of God for those we lead, we must inspire those we lead to be dwelling places in themselves. For this reason, Jesus said that there are many dwelling places in the house of our heavenly Father.

John 14:2 In My Father’s house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you. 3 If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also. (NASB)

I believe that each of us are called to be a dwelling place of God by His Spirit. I also believe that we are meant to be joined to others as corporate expressions of God’s house. These two things are core truths to Christianity. Christianity is not merely a belief system. It is Christ in humanity to shine as the light of life to the world. When we know Christ in us we know the peace of God that surpasses all natural understanding. Christ in us is the testimony of knowing Holy Spirit in an intimate way. Leaders lead to inspire others to receive the true Helper in their lives. Jesus told this truth to His disciples and this same truth is real for us today.

John 14:26 But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you. 27 Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful.

The peace that God gives us is not the absence of conflict in our lives. It is the presence of Holy Spirit in our lives in every good day and in every day of conflict. We never need to be troubled in our hearts or fearful. God is in us, upon us, and with us in all things. All we need to do is lean into our connection to God. Our life is in Him, not in the circumstances of our world.

As I have been blogging, being a place of God’s habitation includes pruning, abiding, being hated by the ways of the world, and ultimately bearing witness of Christ. As leaders we bear witness of Christ, and we lead others to do the same. It is a way of life. It is seven days per week, twenty-four hours per day. The testimony of God’s pruning in our lives is fruit that gives life to others. The testimony of our abiding in Christ is life to us and it is seen in our giving of life to those in our world. The testimony of being hated by those who adhere to the ways of the world is seen in our unwavering focus of giving life to our world. Bearing witness to Christ is the testimony of giving life to others in our world. Leaders lead to give life to those they lead and to inspire them to give life to their sphere of influence in this world. As dwelling places of God, we can know that the Holy Spirit will convict the world of sin, of righteousness, and judgment. These are attributes of Holy Spirit and not works of human ministry.

John 16:7 Nevertheless I tell you the truth. It is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I depart, I will send Him to you. 8 And when He has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: 9 of sin, because they do not believe in Me; 10 of righteousness, because I go to My Father and you see Me no more; 11 of judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.

When we were in the world, we practiced being disconnected from God, but Holy Spirit convicted us of our sin. Our sin was our disconnection from the One who loves us. Holy Spirit drew our spirits close to God and revealed to us that we have been reconciled to God by Jesus Christ. The blood that Jesus shed gave us access to the true source of life. Holy Spirit in our lives is the blood of the New Covenant. He is the source of life within us. Just as the life of the flesh was in the blood, the life of our spirit is only found in the Spirit of God. This is the power of Christ within us. This is why Holy Spirit convicts the world of sin. He convicts of sin only to welcome each and every one to find the true life within. Having been reconciled to God through the blood of Jesus Christ, we should now live our lives empowered by the life of Christ within us.

Our connection with Holy Spirit in our hearts inspires righteousness in our lives. Being loved by God inspires us to be right and to do right things in life. God does not just forgive, He is forgiveness. It is the substance of who He is, that is why He forgives. He loves because He is love. Love is His character, nature, and way. He wants us to be like Him. He wants us to become the substance of love, forgiveness, mercy, grace, and all that He is. This is righteousness. Holy Spirit transforms our lives from within and inspires the manifestation of the character of Christ in our lives. The more we indulge in Holy Spirit, the more we have a sense of what gives life. We are drawn into the place of transformation that causes us to be the substance of life. Some days we will feel like we are not being real, but we are practicians. Holy Spirit is transforming us from within and what is partly real becomes fully real in the process of our relationship with Him.

Holy Spirit convicts of judgment because the ruler of the world is judged. This is not a judgement of condemnation to us. It is enforcing the condemnation of the enemy. One judgment was pronounced upon us and that was a judgment of mercy. The judgment of the devil and every spiritual enemy is that they have no more power over us if we willingly choose to embrace the judgment of God’s mercy in our lives. We can boldly come to the throne of God’s grace where we reach out and receive the mercy given to us and then we look around to find the specific grace needed to overcome the enemy in every situation of our lives. We have already been judged and our judgement was mercy. God’s mercy frees us from the strongholds of the enemy.

These three things are works of Holy Spirit. They are not works of leadership. It is not the responsibility of leadership to convict of sin, righteousness, or judgment. It is our responsibility to embrace these works of Holy Spirit in our lives and then lead others to do the same.

Food For Thought,

Ted J. Hanson




Donations can be made at the link on the home site of:

www.ted4leaders.com

www.ted4you.com or

www.houseofbreadministry.org.

Checks can be made payable to House of Bread Ministry and sent to:

House of Bread Ministry, 3210 Meridian St., Bellingham, WA 98225

To avoid us paying a transaction fee from your donation, you can also set up a payment or an automatic payment from your bank to House of Bread Ministry. Just set it up as a ‘bill pay’ through your online bank account and your bank will mail a check to House of Bread Ministry. We will record your payment as a donation to House of Bread Ministry (E.I.N. 91-2009037) and we will send you a contribution receipt at the close of the year.

Our Ministry Information Is:
House of Bread Ministry
3210 Meridian St.
Bellingham, WA 98225-1728

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Hated By The Ways of The World

Blog In Audio:

Greetings,

As leaders we must set an example as those who love the world, but not the ways of the world. We live in this world, but we don’t find our life from this world. We are givers of the life of heaven to the world in which we live. Jesus was not in this world to become like people in the world. He was in this world to invite people to become like Him. Jesus told us that if we choose to live our lives as dwelling places of God’s presence, we will be hated by the world.

John 15:18 “If the world hates you, you know that it hated Me before it hated you. 19 If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. 20 Remember the word that I said to you, A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you. If they kept My word, they will keep yours also. 21 But all these things they will do to you for My name’s sake, because they do not know Him who sent Me. 22 If I had not come and spoken to them, they would have no sin, but now they have no excuse for their sin. 23 He who hates Me hates My Father also. 24 If I had not done among them the works which no one else did, they would have no sin; but now they have seen and also hated both Me and My Father. 25 But this happened that the word might be fulfilled which is written in their law, they hated Me without a cause.’

Being hated by the world does not mean that people in the world will hate us as people. It means that those who choose the ways of God will be opposed by those bound to the ways of the world. God loves the world, but He does not love the ways of the world. God loved the people of the world so much that He became one of us in the Man, Jesus the Christ to free us from the condemnation which we had already unknowingly embraced by our independent administration of knowledge. Jesus was a Man who demonstrated a love for His heavenly Father and that inspired Him to exhibit the love of the Father for His children, even His wayward, disconnected children in the world. In the days of Jesus, the world system of Rome and the Hellenized system of the Pharisees were both bound to the ways of the world. They were carnal in their desires and in their thinking. They were either lawless or legalistic. In either case, they were self-seeking, judgmental, bitter, insubordinate, wicked, disconnected from one another, and destructive in their destiny. They were affected by the futile environment of a fallen creation. Those bound to the world then, and now, are deceived by destructive lords, fear inspired in their judgments, bitter in their identities, abusive controllers and manipulators, wicked because of carnal addictions, independently isolated from others, and expectant of death in the outcomes of their lives. They are takers from others and not givers of life to their world. This is true for those bound to lawlessness and for those bound to legalism. Just as there is a beast of the sea, there is also a beast of the land. One is the spirit of those in the world and the other is the spirit of the world in the form of dead religion.  

God wants the spirit of these things removed from the various influences of humanity. We must become spiritual people who are led by one lord, one faith, one submersion, one God and Father, one God above all, one God through all, and one God in all so we might see the influence of Christ’s kingdom effect every aspect of human life (Eph. 4:4-6). All that we are and do must express that we are alive to God, our actions are acts of love towards Him, our testimonies are responses to His presence, our authority is to bring life and light to men, we are awake to God’s manifest presence in all things, we live to love Him and our fellow man in every season of our lives, and we are dedicated to see His name made great in our posterity in the earth. These seven things should become the motivating factors of our lives in all that we are and do. If we embrace these attributes in our hearts and minds, we will love the world, but the spirit of the world will hate us and resist us in our path of destiny. We must love the people of the world more than we hate the spirit of the world, but in this we cannot compromise to become the world for the sake of the world. We are sons and daughters of God for the sake of our fellow mankind. We cannot be distracted from our true purpose because of the resistance to our true purpose in life. We must endure in faith, hope, and love in all things.

These are not things we do on Sunday when we go to church, these are attributes of our lives that affect everything we do in life and also affect those around us in the world. We are not to be separate from the world. We are to be separate from the ways of the world, but we must walk in the ways of Christ’s kingdom to become a life-giving force of authority and influence in our everyday world.

Food For Thought,

Ted J. Hanson




Donations can be made at the link on the home site of:

www.ted4leaders.com

www.ted4you.com or

www.houseofbreadministry.org.

Checks can be made payable to House of Bread Ministry and sent to:

House of Bread Ministry, 3210 Meridian St., Bellingham, WA 98225

 

To avoid us paying a transaction fee from your donation, you can also set up a payment or an automatic payment from your bank to House of Bread Ministry. Just set it up as a ‘bill pay’ through your online bank account and your bank will mail a check to House of Bread Ministry. We will record your payment as a donation to House of Bread Ministry (E.I.N. 91-2009037) and we will send you a contribution receipt at the close of the year.

Our Ministry Information Is:
House of Bread Ministry
3210 Meridian St.
Bellingham, WA 98225-1728

Posted in #leadershipinthechurch, #newcovenantleaders, Leadership Development | Leave a comment

Leading For Relationships

Blog In Audio:

Greetings,

As leaders, we must know that Jesus is the way and He is the truth. We know this by being the place where God dwells in the earth. It is a place of the Holy Spirit in us and upon us. We must also know that He is the life! This is the fruit of our partnership with God being with us in all things.

The kingdom of God is an internal influence of God’s presence to our hearts and minds by the presence of Holy Spirit within us. It is a place of righteousness; a connection with God that gives a righteousness that is the fruit of being rightly joined to God through Jesus Christ. It is a place of peace; a testimony of heaven’s truth by the manifest presence of Holy Spirit spilling over upon our lives to testify that there is no gap between us and God. We must also know that Jesus is the life! True life is not just something we receive from God. It is the testimony of a partnership with God in all things that empowers us to walk in the authority of true purpose in life. That purpose is to be givers of life to our world. That partnership is the authority of God with us in every sphere of our influence in life. This is true joy, and it is the fruit of a partnership with God.

Psalms 16:11 You will show me the path of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy; at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

Jesus revealed this to be another attribute of our lives today, tomorrow, and in the space between. Our true joy is fulfilling the purpose of God in our lives in a partnership with Him to bear the fruit of life for the sake of others in our world. As leaders, we walk in this and lead others to know this authority. God’s business is one of relationship and love. Our partnership with God will produce the fruit of love and relationship with God and one another. God is not a debt collector. He is a ransom redeemer! He desires for all to know friendship with Him and one another.

John 15:11 “These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full. 12 This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. 13 Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends. 14 You are My friends if you do whatever I command you. 15 No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you. 16 You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you. 17 These things I command you, that you love one another.

The context of John chapter 15 is that of abiding in the vine of Christ to bear the fruit of Christ in all things. In that place of abiding in Him, we experience the loving hand of God that prunes away what cannot be fruitful, and He prunes the things that distract us from being able to bear the true fruit of life. God wants us to bear fruit. That fruit is the fruit of relationship with God and it invites and invokes relationships with one another. For this reason, Jesus stated that the new commandment was a love for one another based upon a revelation of His love for us. The true fruit of life comes from that place of love and relationships.

In the story of the unjust steward, Jesus commended the steward who was about to lose his livelihood for making deals by showing mercy with what had been entrusted to him by his master. His objective was to make friends because he knew that relationships would be important when all else failed. When his master saw what he was doing he recognized that he was making friendships for the future. Jesus said that this was the most important thing in life and he equated it to being faithful with the things that have been given to our care in life.

Luke 16:9 “And I say to you, make friends for yourselves by unrighteous mammon, that when you fail, they may receive you into an everlasting home. 10 He who is faithful in what is least is faithful also in much; and he who is unjust in what is least is unjust also in much.”

The physical things of this world are not the substance of true fruit. It is how we handle relationships in this world that bears the fruit of eternal life. This is the fruit of a partnership with God as our Father in all things. True leadership is to lead through a partnership with God in managing our relationships with others in our world. This is dependent upon us knowing God with us in all things. This is the place of knowing joy in the Holy Spirit. This is true in every season of our lives. We must seek to be faithful with the things that have been given to us and use them for the purpose of making friends in life. God partners with us as a friend and doesn’t want us to merely relate to Him as the one to whom we owe our debts. God is with us in all things.

Food For Thought,

Ted J. Hanson




Donations can be made at the link on the home site of:

www.ted4leaders.com

www.ted4you.com or

www.houseofbreadministry.org.

Checks can be made payable to House of Bread Ministry and sent to:

House of Bread Ministry, 3210 Meridian St., Bellingham, WA 98225

To avoid us paying a transaction fee from your donation, you can also set up a payment or an automatic payment from your bank to House of Bread Ministry. Just set it up as a ‘bill pay’ through your online bank account and your bank will mail a check to House of Bread Ministry. We will record your payment as a donation to House of Bread Ministry (E.I.N. 91-2009037) and we will send you a contribution receipt at the close of the year.

Our Ministry Information Is:
House of Bread Ministry
3210 Meridian St.
Bellingham, WA 98225-1728

Posted in #leadershipinthechurch, #newcovenantleaders, Leadership Development | Leave a comment

Abiding In Him – Abiding In Truth

Blog In Audio:

Greetings;

We are living in a time of a lot of unknown things. It can be very challenging to know what is coming next in our world. There is one thing we can be sure of. That one thing is the fact that the presence of God is available to us every day in increasing measures. The increasing measure is discovered in our ability to recognize God’s presence more readily in us, upon us, and with us in all things. As leaders, we must lead others in knowing this reality. Last week I stated that the present season is a season of the space between what was and what is yet to come. In this space between we are not waiting because God is not doing anything. We are a place of God resting and we are resting in Him. Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life in this space between.

We will face challenges today, but we must not be distracted from knowing that we are a place of God’s dwelling presence. Christ in us is the hope of glory. That glory is not just the glory that will come in our day of going to heaven. It is also a glory of knowing the eternal life of God today. We are a dwelling place of God by His Spirit in our world today. Because of this we can know true peace. That peace is what will give us the testimony of truth. It is discovered in this place of God’s abiding presence. There is no gap between us and God. He will never leave us or forsake us.

John 15:9 “As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love.”

God’s love for us is not just an informational truth. It is a truth of His presence. True peace is not the mere absence of conflict in our lives. It is the manifest presence of God, who loves us, in our lives always. Sometimes we can feel His presence in a very tangible way. At other times we just have an awareness that the One who loves us will never leave us. Is God omnipresent? Or is it God’s love for us and our love for Him what keeps His presence in our lives? Many people quote the psalmist David when he said he could not go anywhere where God would not be found. These verses are not meant to merely to give us an informational view of God’s presence in the earth. I believe that these verses are about God’s intimate connection to King David and David’s connection to God.

Psalms 139:7 Where can I go from Your Spirit? Or where can I flee from Your presence? 8 If I ascend into heaven, You are there; if I make my bed in hell (sheol), behold, You are there.

In these verses the psalmist says He would find God in heaven, and he would find God in hell. Hell in this verse is Sheol, the realm of the dead. Does God live in the realm of the dead? If God lived there, could it be called the realm of the dead? Does God live everywhere or is He an intimate Father who promises never to leave the psalmist? The psalmist knew that wherever he went God would be there, because God never leaves the psalmist. This is why the grave could not hold the psalmist! This is why the grave could not hold Jesus! This is why no manner of death can consume us. Life is more powerful than death because God is life, and He is abiding in our lives. This is truth and this is the testimony of true peace. It is true yesterday, tomorrow, and in every space between!

Romans 8:38 For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, 39 nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

I don’t believe that it is sovereignty that makes God who He is. Is He sovereign in His ability? For sure He is! But I believe that there is something that is more powerful than His ability to be sovereign. It is His identity as Father. It is His identity as the Son. It is His nearness to us by His Spirit in us, upon us, and with us in all things. He gives life, breath, and all things to all people when they come to Him to receive all that He gives. This is an action of intimacy and endearment, not mere strength. I don’t believe that God wants us just to know Him as God. He is God, but He wants us to know Him as our Father. It is through a Father/son, Father/daughter relationship that we can receive His divine guidance for life. It is both specific and providential, but it is intimate and real. He loves His children and delights in their course of life in this earth. This is the essence of His abiding presence in our lives. When God rests in our lives and we rest in Him, we can be assured that as it is in heaven it will be in our lives, even in the space between what was and what is yet to come. This is truth and knowing the truth will make us free! Let’s be leaders who know the truth and are not distracted by the reports of how it is in the places apart from God. When we know this truth, we can lead others to know the same. Jesus is the way, but Jesus is also the truth. This is an attribute of His abiding presence in our lives!

Food For Thought,

Ted J. Hanson




Donations can be made at the link on the home site of:

www.ted4leaders.com

www.ted4you.com or

www.houseofbreadministry.org.

Checks can be made payable to House of Bread Ministry and sent to:

House of Bread Ministry, 3210 Meridian St., Bellingham, WA 98225

Posted in #leadershipinthechurch, #newcovenantleaders, Leadership Development | Leave a comment

In The Space Between

Blog In Audio:

Greetings;

I was in Deming, New Mexico last weekend and ministered a word on ‘The Space Between’. I have been writing on Jesus being the way, the truth, and the life in my Monday blogs. When Jesus proclaimed to His disciples that He was the way, the truth, and the life it was in the space between the Passover supper and His arrest to be taken to His crucifixion. John records those events in John chapter 13 and John chapter 18. Between those chapters Jesus spoke many words as to being the way, the truth, and the life. I believe that His words in chapters 14, 15, 16, and 17 identify what we can expect in the space between anything that has been and what is yet to come. As leaders, we must know how to embrace the things that Jesus presented in those chapters, and we must lead others into the same.

There are many spaces between in life. There was the space between the cup of the Passover meal and the cross. There was the space between the cross and the resurrection of Jesus. The space between the death of Jesus and Jesus walking into the room of His hiding disciples. There was a space between that room and the ascension of Jesus. There was a space between the ascension of Jesus and the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost. We will always find ourselves in a space between. In the present space between we are having to embrace Christ as the Rock upon which we stand. It is a time to know the One who does not shake and is in fact the One who shakes the things that can shake. In this space between we are being drawn by God to connect to Him and to connect to others in new and responsive ways. We are being renewed in the courage of the Lord, the holiness of the Lord, and in our faith in Him. It is about His courage, His holiness, and a trusting of who He is. God is courageous and He will not relent in His love for us all. God is holy and He will eradicate the unholy realities of our lives and world. God is good and we can depend on Him in all things.

In the space between, sometimes we face good news and sometimes we face bad news. When we find ourselves facing bad news, we usually look back to the good news of the past and then we hope for the good news of the past. Sometimes we face good news only to find another episode of bad news in days to come. Whether we are facing good news or bad news we must know how to live in the space between. Leaders don’t just lead in the times of great glory or in times of hardship. Leaders lead in the space between.

We must know that Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life. He is the way to go from where we are to where we are going. He is the way to stand in this gap between. He is the truth of all that is in heaven to be seen in our world today. He is the truth to the space between. He is the life in this place between today and the life that is yet to come. In the space between we must know God in us, upon us, and with us. The Holy Spirit is God in us, spilling over to be upon us, and Holy Spirit with us in every aspect of our lives. This is a place of knowing God more and more. Every space between is a time to know God more. It is a place of knowing God. It is a place to live in God and to discover God living in us. We must never let our hearts to become troubled. God is in us, upon us, and with us. To be a leader means leading others into the place of not allowing our hearts to be troubled. We are a dwelling place of God. In every situation we find ourselves in God is doing something in His dwelling place. We are a place of God’s dwelling. Jesus revealed our need for Holy Spirit in our lives in the space between the cup of the Supper and his arrest in the garden.  In John chapter 15 Jesus told His disciples that part of our process in life is to allow God to remove things that are dead in our lives and to even prune things that appear to be alive in our lives to make us able to bear more fruit for the lives of others.

Jesus compared our relationship with Him with that of being branches on a vine. God honors the vine by pruning it. God honors us by pruning us. He cuts away the things that are dead. He trims back the things that grow quickly but will not carry the weight of the destiny of the future. This is part of our living in the space between what was and what is to come.

John 15:1 “I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. 2 Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit.”

John 15:5 “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing. 6  If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned.”

Pruning is an honorable thing to do for the vine. The objective is to prune it for its own destiny and purpose. I have fruit trees in my garden. I also have grape vines and with grape vines you cut a lot off vines every year. Last fall I cut my grape vines way back. Now they are full of new branches with grapes growing to maturity everywhere on my vines. During the dormant season I went to my apple trees, and I examined how they were shaped. I cut off the branches that were not matching the destiny of fruit so that the other branches would be able to bear more fruit. In that process I was honoring the destiny of the tree. There are branches on the tree that if I don’t tend to them would grow straight up. If I have feelings for the branches of the tree that are beyond the feelings of a creator, or less than the feelings of a creator, and I will look at that tree and I say, “I will never cut a branch off this tree.” I might think that I am being kind and I don’t want to hurt anything, but I am being less than a creator in my thinking. In my own life God honors me by removing things that are not beneficial to my destiny. He shapes my attitudes. He shapes my desires so I will bear more fruit. It is the same in a family. A family’s attitudes are shaped. A family’s attributes and characteristics are shaped so the family will fulfill a family purpose. That is honorable. God honors the vine by pruning it. God honors me by pruning me. He cuts away the things that are dead and trims back the things that grow quickly but will not carry the weight of the fruit of the future. God’s words to us are not to make us clean. We are already clean by the gift of God in Christ. God’s words to us are so that we will bear fruit. Leaders allow God to bring pruning to their lives and they also allow God to bring pruning to the lives of those they lead. Whatever is being cut away in our lives today is for the sake of fruit in the seasons to come. Pruning is part of the process we find in the space between.

Food For Thought,

Ted J. Hanson




Donations can be made at the link on the home site of:

www.ted4leaders.com

www.ted4you.com or

www.houseofbreadministry.org.

Checks can be made payable to House of Bread Ministry and sent to:

House of Bread Ministry, 3210 Meridian St., Bellingham, WA 98225

Posted in #leadershipinthechurch, #newcovenantleaders, Leadership Development | Leave a comment

The Doings of Christian Beings

Blog In Audio:

Greetings,

In the twelfth chapter of the book of Romans, Paul gives some instructions to the believers in Rome. His words to them are words to us today. As leaders, we must seek to live a lifestyle that is true to the character of our heavenly father. We must lead others to embrace the same. We are people of God, not mere people of the world. We are the family of God who have been regenerated to live as salt and light to our world. We are the book that the world reads, written in our hearts and minds and seen in the actions of our lives. We are the gate of heaven and the place of invitation for others to find heaven’s grace. We must present our bodies in every way to think as new creations in Christ and to live as testimonies of Christ. We do this in our own unique way, but we all seek to live in the same manner. Some of us are perceivers and we see for the sake of others. Some of us are graced to serve and we inspire others to serve. Some are gifted with mercy, and they invoke us all to be merciful. There are those who lead, those who exhort, those who give, and those who teach. These are the different motivations of our lives for the sake us all together.

Romans 12:4 For as we have many members in one body, but all the members do not have the same function, 5 so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another. 6 Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith; 7 or ministry, let us use it in our ministering; he who teaches, in teaching; 8 he who exhorts, in exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness.


These describe our giftings, but no matter what our giftings are we have common attributes to our way of life in this world. Paul writes in the remaining verses of this chapter in regard to how we should act. I call these the actions of Christian beings. This is my observation of these things:

We are to love without hypocrisy. We can’t pretend to love. We must love. We are to abhor evil – to detest it, avoid it, and to have nothing in us that desires it. The evidence is seen in our attachment to all that is good. We are to cling to what is good in every situation, at all times. We must never forget who we are. We are family! We are the family of God! We must be kindly affectionate to one another with love that is the love of family. We should practice playing second fiddle. It is with honor that we give preference to another over our own selves. This means to seek the wellbeing of others and to give them opportunity for life even at our own sacrifice. Perhaps this even means being a good listener rather than seeking to be a good teacher to someone else in life. We must never be lagging in diligence. This means we are responsible with all that has been given to us in life. What has been given to us is for the sake of giving life to our world. We should be the first to show up when showing up is needed! We set an example that encourages others to step up to the plate when needed. This includes being fervent in spirit, serving the Lord (not your own agendas). We must have a right attitude and a right focus in life. We rejoice in hope! That hope includes an expectancy of God doing good, even when our expectations fail us. We must be patient in tribulation. Trouble only last for the night. We can expect Jesus to be our salvation in every situation. We will reap a harvest of life in due time. We must be unshakeable in our determination, being steadfast in prayer. Our lifestyles are ones of a face-to-face relationship with God every hour of our day. Our conversations with Him include listening to Him and allowing our confessions to be led by His Spirit in every way. We take care of one another, even in practical ways. We give to the needs of one another. We are hospitable in our attitudes and actions. We make room for others in the space of our living in this world. When we are treated wrongly, we don’t respond by treating those who treat us wrongly in the same way. We bless and we do not curse. We think the best. We practice being innocent to evil and wise to what is good. We choose to look for the good in others. When someone else is blessed, we rejoice in their blessing. When someone is in sorrow, we empathize with their pain. We rejoice with those who rejoice, and we weep with those who weep. We exhibit the attributes of real friends. We must never think that we are better than others in some way. We are no better nor are we less than someone else. We must never be wise in our own opinion. We can never think that we know it all. We are responsible for our own attitudes and our own actions in life and must never repay evil with evil. We must mind our own business and deal with our own hearts. We are to have regard for good things in the sight of all men. We look for the good and show ourselves honorable in life. We do everything we can to live in peace with everyone. This doesn’t simply mean say peace, peace when there is no peace. It simply means we don’t look to provoke a riot in the hearts of others. When treated unfairly, we don’t avenge ourselves. We let God repay. That is God’s business, and we leave God’s stuff alone. If our enemy hungers we feed him; if he is thirsty, give him a drink. We are not just kind because we think someone deserves it. We are kind people! In our kindness we hope to heap coals of fire on our enemy’s head. This isn’t to destroy them, it is to give them light, heat, and a way to cook their food. If we had their life, we might be an enemy too. Just maybe, our love action might inspire them to “get a life”. We must never be overcome by evil, but we must overcome evil with good. Don’t react to what is bad, make plans for good. Don’t respond to evil, be an influencer of good and evil will flee. These are attributes of sons and daughters of God in the family of God as an influence of light to our world. As leaders, these are the values for which we lead. These are twenty-five doings of Christian beings

Food For Thought,

Ted J. Hanson

Romans 12:9-21:

  1. Love without hypocrisy.
  2. Abhor what is evil.
  3. Cling to what is good.
  4. Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love.
  5. In honor, give preference to one another. Practice playing second fiddle.
  6. Don’t be lagging in diligence. Be responsible!
  7. Be fervent in spirit, serving the Lord (not your own agendas). Have a right attitude and a right focus!
  8. Rejoice in hope.
  9. Be patient in tribulation. Trouble only lasts for the night.
  10. Be steadfast in prayer.
  11. Distribute to the needs of the saints. Follow through the process.
  12. Be given to hospitality. Let it become a habit!
  13. Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Think the best. Be innocent to evil and wise to good.
  14. Rejoice with those who rejoice.
  15. Weep with those who weep.
  16. Be a friend to one another.
  17. Don’t think that you are better than others in some way. Don’t be stuck up.
  18. Don’t be wise in your own opinion. Don’t think you know it all.
  19. Repay no one evil for evil. Mind your business. Deal with your own heart.
  20. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. Look for the good and show yourself honorable.
  21. Do everything you can to live in peace with everyone.
  22. Do not avenge yourselves. Let God repay. Leave God’s stuff alone.
  23. If your enemy hungers, feed him; if he thirsts, give him a drink. Don’t just be kind because you think someone deserves it.
  24. In your kindness, believe that you might heap coals of fire on your enemy’s head. Just maybe, your love action might inspire them to “get a life”.
  25. Don’t be overcome by evil but overcome evil with good. Don’t react! Make plans for good, don’t respond to evil.



Donations can be made at the link on the home site of:

www.ted4leaders.com

www.ted4you.com or

www.houseofbreadministry.org.

Checks can be made payable to House of Bread Ministry and sent to:

House of Bread Ministry, 3210 Meridian St., Bellingham, WA 98225

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The Best Wine Is NOW!

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Greetings;

What is the NOW testimony of God for this season of our lives? To receive what is new we must expect something new. In the story of the water to wine at the wedding of Cana, the miracle happened when the servants filled the pots to the brim. To receive what God is doing now we must fully expect God to give us what is new. We must be willing to exchange what we have known for what God is doing now.

John 2:9 When the master of the feast had tasted the water that was made wine, and did not know where it came from (but the servants who had drawn the water knew), the master of the feast called the bridegroom. 10 And he said to him, “Every man at the beginning sets out the good wine, and when the guests have well drunk, then the inferior. You have kept the good wine until now!”

True life in the Spirit is only relevant to NOW. Indulging in the Spirit of God is not a method – it is a NOW relationship. The Old Covenant led to the day of Jesus implementing the New Covenant for all who seek to find it. The New Covenant is a constant now relationship with God and a continual testimony of new realities. As leaders, we must seek to know every now reality of God and lead others to find it as well. Jesus was demonstrating that a system that could only appease the guilt of the sinner had to receive a culture that could transform the human heart to become the heart of a true believer. The past can influence our conscience, but only a present connection to God determines the change of our hearts. Only a NOW reality of God in our lives can transform our lives today. The new wine of the New Covenant offers continual internal changes and outward testimonies. The law system of the Old Covenant only offered a means of appeasing the human conscience through an act of faith that only looked to the future.

What was useful in our past may not be useful today. Something that was useful for one thing in the past must be made available for a new purpose in the present time of God’s kingdom. The purpose of the past cannot be more valuable than God’s purpose in the present. The new use of things in our lives may appear to be unclean in regard to our past knowledge. In the miracle, the servants had to be willing to trust that what was used to remove dirt in the past had a potable use for internal consumption in the present. Something that could only wash the surface in the past could now become a substance that would make the heart glad. I have known God for more than forty-eight years and I have seen God do many amazing things. Although I have seen God do many things before, I must continually expect God to do more. He has saved the best wine for NOW!

We must trust what God is saying today more than what we think He has said in the past. The servants in the wine miracle had to trust the instructions of Jesus more than their understanding of the traditions of the past. Those drawing the water had to trust the now voice of God more than the fears of their own hearts. What if the water wasn’t wine? When we embrace what God is saying today, we will affect others in our world in a life-giving way.

When the words of the past surpass the value of the future, they blind us from the NOW word of God in our lives. This can include our experiences. When the experiences of our past create a louder voice in our hearts than the whisper of God’s love, we become bound to the experiences of the past. We must always know that He has saved the best wine until NOW!

Expect to find God today! He has saved the best wine for NOW! The world only shakes when something of the unshakeable God is manifesting. God is doing something in the world and we must lead to lead others to finding God. In Summary:

  • Your NOW moment belongs to God. 
  • God wants to be intimately involved with you today.
  • Things that were useful for one thing in the past have to now be made available for a new purpose in the present time of God’s kingdom.
  • God’s purpose in your past cannot be more valuable than His purpose in your present.
  • The expectancy of God doing something NOW has to outweigh the traditional structures and practices of your past.
  • True life in the Spirit is only relevant to NOW.
  • Only the NOW reality of God in your life can transform your life today.
  • What was useful in your past may not be useful today.
  • The new use of things in your life may appear to be unclean in regard to your past knowledge.
  • Trust what God is saying today more than what you think He has said in the past.
  • When the words of the past surpass the value of the future, they blind us from the NOW word of God in our lives.
  • Always know that He has saved the best wine until NOW!

Food For Thought,

Ted J. Hanson




Donations can be made at the link on the home site of:

www.ted4leaders.com

www.ted4you.com or

www.houseofbreadministry.org.

Checks can be made payable to House of Bread Ministry and sent to:

House of Bread Ministry, 3210 Meridian St., Bellingham, WA 98225

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The Now Moment of God

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Greetings,

Life is not a mere perception of the mind. Life is a substance in the human heart. When we trust God from our hearts today, we receive the blessings of His kingdom in the place called NOW. It is a real-time experience. It is NOW we find the keys to the future and the secrets to redeeming the past.

Matthew 13:52 Then He said to them, “Therefore every scribe instructed concerning the kingdom of heaven is like a householder who brings out of his treasure things new and old.”

A scribe in the New Covenant is not someone who writes down the things that God does or says. A scribe in the New Covenant is someone who allows God to write in them. They embrace God’s presence to write a living letter in their hearts and minds that is a testimony to the life of God. It is a now moment that unlocks things that have never been heard, seen, or thought before. It also unlocks the redemption of things that are antique and lost before their time. They bring the things of God into the path of their journey in life. As leaders, we must embrace God in every now moment of our lives. We cannot be stuck in some past reality. When we embrace the now reality of God in our lives, we will lead others into the miracle testimonies of God. This was the case in the story of the water turned to wine by Jesus at the wedding in Cana. The best wine was saved for the now moment of the wedding. It wasn’t that the last wine was the best, but the now moment was the time for the best wine. The best wine is always NOW in our connection to God. What are some key ingredients in the now moments of our lives?

The first thing we must know is the NOW moment of our lives belongs to God. The miracle happened on the ‘third day’. It was God’s doing. Our future is not determined by our own abilities. Our true path in life is a path of life and celebration and it is fully dependent upon God in every now moment that we face in life. As leaders we must know that our sufficiency is of Christ and not ourselves. We lead by being dependent upon God and by leading others into doing the same.

John 2:1 On the third day there was a wedding in Cana of Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there.

A second key to our now moment of God is to do whatever God says. It is good to know the things that God has said in the past, but we must lead by hearing God in every new season of our lives. What is God saying today? Leadership is not merely about leading others by the skill of our past experiences. It is about leading them into present experiences with Him.

John 2:2 Now both Jesus and His disciples were invited to the wedding. 3 And when they ran out of wine, the mother of Jesus said to Him, “They have no wine.” 4 Jesus said to her, “Woman, what does your concern have to do with Me? My hour has not yet come.” 5 His mother said to the servants, “Whatever He says to you, do it.”

Our now experience with God involves a partnership of God and human lives. God is the word, but we are the expressions of His voice. In the miracle of the water to wine, there were six waterpots of stone. Six is a symbolic number for man, as man was created on the sixth day. Whatever God is doing in the earth today, He wants to do it in each of our lives. Whatever He is doing in our lives as leaders, He desires to do in the lives of those we lead. God wants to be intimately involved with us today.

John 2:6 Now there were set there six waterpots of stone, according to the manner of purification of the Jews, containing twenty or thirty gallons apiece. 7 Jesus said to them, “Fill the waterpots with water.” And they filled them up to the brim. 8 And He said to them, “Draw some out now, and take it to the master of the feast.” And they took it.

In this miracle, pots that were formerly used as purification containers had to be made available for a ‘now’ miracle of God. Things that were useful for one thing in the past had to now be made available for a new purpose in the present time of God’s kingdom. God’s purpose in our past cannot be more valuable than His purpose in our present. The expectancy of God doing something NOW has to outweigh the traditional structures and practices of your past.  I am considering this week the NOW moment of today. What things of my past need to take on new expressions in my present? I will blog more on this next week, but consider this week the NOW moment of God in your life.

Food For Thought,

Ted J. Hanson




Donations can be made at the link on the home site of:

www.ted4leaders.com

www.ted4you.com or

www.houseofbreadministry.org.

Checks can be made payable to House of Bread Ministry and sent to:

House of Bread Ministry, 3210 Meridian St., Bellingham, WA 98225

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Choose Life – Choose Blessing

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Greetings,

As leaders we are called to lead others into the realities of God today. We are not called to merely teach people about what God did yesterday. We are called to help them hear God and to respond to Him today. This is the place of faith. This is called the obedience of faith. Faith is a supernatural response to God’s voice in our hearts and it is demonstrated in the actions of our lives. It is seen in the outworking of our path in life. Leaders set an example in this, and they lead others in embracing an intimate relationship with God in their hearts that is seen in the actions of their lives. This path is a testimony of love for God and the fruit of a revelation of God’s love for us. This truth was depicted in the journey of Israel to the Promised Land. The Promised Land was to be a place of relationship with God and walking in the path set by Him in their lives.

Deuteronomy 30:15 “See, I have set before you today life and good, death and evil, 16 in that I command you today to love the LORD your God, to walk in His ways, and to keep His commandments, His statutes, and His judgments, that you may live and multiply; and the LORD your God will bless you in the land which you go to possess. 17 But if your heart turns away so that you do not hear, and are drawn away, and worship other gods and serve them, 18 I announce to you today that you shall surely perish; you shall not prolong your days in the land which you cross over the Jordan to go in and possess. 19 I call heaven and earth as witnesses today against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life, that both you and your descendants may live; 20 that you may love the LORD your God, that you may obey His voice, and that you may cling to Him, for He is your life and the length of your days; and that you may dwell in the land which the LORD swore to your fathers, to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, to give them.”

The blessings and life of God are found TODAY – they are found NOW! God wants us to walk in all that is life and good in our world. Life will destroy death and good will destroy evil. We don’t kill death with death. Death is destroyed by embracing life! We don’t destroy evil by acting evil. We destroy all that is evil by becoming all that is good! Knowing God’s ways, commandments, statutes, and judgments will guide our vision and all that we embrace as our path in life. These are what reveal who God is in His character, nature, way, power, and authority. When we know who God is, we don’t turn away from Him in a pursuit of other things. We don’t pursue our way but run to Him to learn His ways in all things. We don’t demand Him to serve our desires, but we seek to know His desires as though they are commands to our hearts and minds. We don’t pursue our mandates, but we embrace His statutes as the mandates of our lives. We don’t try to convince God that what we judge a thing to be is better than what He had judged it to be. We trust Him! Therefore, we trust His judgments in all matters of life. God wants us to walk in life and blessing, not death and curses. The path is our choice but knowing Him will empower us to choose the path of life and blessing. Walking in His path is the path of loving Him. It is a path of clinging to Him. It is a path of family inheritance and a generational family name. It is a path of dwelling in the land – a decision to fully embrace our own life and live it as the world that God has given to us to  bring heaven’s grace and truth to. It is a walk of faith!

Romans 16:25 Now to Him who is able to establish you according to my gospel and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery kept secret since the world began 26 but now made manifest, and by the prophetic Scriptures made known to all nations, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, for obedience to the faith— 27 to God, alone wise, be glory through Jesus Christ forever. Amen.

We are called to be obedient to faith. This is involves embracing God in our world for the sake of His glory in our world. It is a personal acceptance of the voice of God to our own hearts to walk in the path of life and good. It is the place of knowing the blessing of eternal life. Eternal life is to know God as our Father and to know Jesus the Son. This is only possible by our personal acceptance of being a place where Holy Spirit abides. Leaders live for this, and they lead for this, in the measure of authority given to them in this world.

Food For Thought,

Ted J. Hanson




Donations can be made at the link on the home site of:

www.ted4leaders.com

www.ted4you.com or

www.houseofbreadministry.org.

Checks can be made payable to House of Bread Ministry and sent to:

House of Bread Ministry, 3210 Meridian St., Bellingham, WA 98225

Posted in #leadershipinthechurch, #newcovenantleaders, Leadership Development | Leave a comment

Leading for NOW

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Greetings,

As leaders we must know God in ever new moment of our lives, and we must demonstrate knowing God in the now reality of what He is doing to those we lead. This requires an ability to embrace new things. More specifically, those new things are what God is doing now. What God has done in the past is wonderful, but what God is doing in this moment is the testimony of His existence today. To be a leader we must embrace what is in the present and lead others from the past into the realities of today. There is a wonderful testimony of this in the first miracle recorded in the life of Jesus. It was in the turning of water to wine at the wedding celebration in Cana. It begins on a “third day”. Wherever we find a “third day” statement in the Scriptures we are reading something of the miracle working of God. The number three is prophetically symbolic of God in His godhead.  

John 2:1 On the third day there was a wedding in Cana of Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there. 2 Now both Jesus and His disciples were invited to the wedding. 3 And when they ran out of wine, the mother of Jesus said to Him, “They have no wine.” 4 Jesus said to her, “Woman, what does your concern have to do with Me? My hour has not yet come.” 5 His mother said to the servants, “Whatever He says to you, do it.”

In this story the mother of Jesus, Mary, knew that the words of Jesus were the words of God. She knew that what He said would bring the life of heaven into the circumstance of the moment. God’s word to us today will bring the celebration of the life of God into our world today. As leaders we must embrace God’s words to us today above His words to us in the past. We must never let go of the foundation set in our lives because of what God did yesterday, but we must live to hear Him in every moment of our journey in life.

John 2:6 Now there were set there six waterpots of stone, according to the manner of purification of the Jews, containing twenty or thirty gallons apiece. 7 Jesus said to them, “Fill the waterpots with water.” And they filled them up to the brim. 8 And He said to them, “Draw some out now, and take it to the master of the feast.” And they took it. 9 When the master of the feast had tasted the water that was made wine, and did not know where it came from (but the servants who had drawn the water knew), the master of the feast called the bridegroom.

Embracing what God is doing today will often require us to embrace things that appear to be contrary to what He has said in the past. In this story, what were ceremonial washing pots to cleanse the outside had to become containers of living wine that activated life in the hearts of those who would drink it. What God did in our lives yesterday can often give us a feeling of security and sense of being holy, but only what God is doing in our lives today can give us the fullness of God’s life in our hearts and minds in this moment. Jesus came so that we would have abundant life, the eternal life that comes from intimately knowing God. He didn’t merely come to make us clean. He came to make us alive. Leaders must lead to the place of life, not merely a place of being clean. The servants at the wedding feast had to trust the words of Jesus. They had to believe that giving the water from the vessels to the master of the feast would not have grave consequences. The purpose of the vessels had changed. God’s word to us today will not change the truths of the past, but there will be a greater fullness of truth in embracing what God is doing today. In that process, the purpose of the vessels had to change. They were no longer vessels to wash in, but vessels to drink from. Leaders trust God in His words today and they know that God’s words today cannot be carried out in the same way they were in the past. The purpose of everything that serves God must be to serve God in the present reality of His present truth. God does not serve His purposes, His purposes serve Him!

John 2:10 And he said to him, “Every man at the beginning sets out the good wine, and when the guests have well drunk, then the inferior. You have kept the good wine until now!”

The master was astonished that the wine presented was better than any wine that had been served thus far in the celebration. The party had been going for some time and the guests had already feasted well. The wine created at the word of Jesus was the best wine to that moment in time. God always saves the best wine for NOW. NOW is not a memory of yesterday nor is it a hope for tomorrow. NOW involves the reality of the moment. Today is the day of God’s salvation. The moment before us is the opportunity for the fullness God’s life. As leaders we must seek to excel in embracing the moment before us. We cannot live in the past, and we cannot live to recreate the past. We must embrace what has not been seen, heard, or thought before and allow it to become the reality of our reality today.

Food For Thought,

Ted J. Hanson




Donations can be made at the link on the home site of:

www.ted4leaders.com

www.ted4you.com or

www.houseofbreadministry.org.

Checks can be made payable to House of Bread Ministry and sent to:

House of Bread Ministry, 3210 Meridian St., Bellingham, WA 98225

Posted in #leadershipinthechurch, #newcovenantleaders, Leadership Development | Leave a comment