There was a time the more I had read the Bible, I had become more thirsty instead of being satisfied with my spiritual thirst. I had become more stressful as I read the bible. The more I read the Bible, the motivation of God was created. “What did this person do to be used by God? We both are same people of God. The only difference is that we are living in a different era. Would it be possible for me to be chosen by God or not?”
When God utilizes us, He does not just utilize us. God will make us start from the bottom. You will begin as a soldier of the lowest rank. You will not be raised overnight. You will begin from the bottom. If you are in a situation that is considered the bottom and the lowest ranked soldier, even if you do not know what is waiting ahead of you, you will need to endure some kind of process and go through circumstances. Before God’s power and blessing come to you, you will need to endure some difficult circumstances.
In order to prevent a person from becoming corrupted, the person will need to begin from the bottom and as the lowest ranked soldier of God. If a person begins at a high position or level and if such a person carries out their faith life with the idea that they need to begin from the high position, this person will have the high possibility of failing later. It is best for a person to begin from the very bottom. From the beginning of our ministry, my wife and I decided not to depend on people but depend and rely wholly on God regarding all things. We began from the very bottom whether people helped or not. We had only prayed. When we had prayed, God had worked through people. There was a time when an unbeliever who had owned a jewelry store came with golden rings and paid our church rent. It was a very exciting thing for us to experience people helping us in such a way.
Before God grants us with some kind of power and blessing, the question we need to ask is how will He begin the work? God will not only use who you like, but God will also utilize people who you despise. God observes everything we say, such as “I have a good relationship with this person. I have a bad relationship with that person and so on” Since I have prayed since I was youth, I have developed the fear of God.
Therefore I used to say to myself, “It is best to have good, peaceful, reconciled relationship with everyone because if I do not live in such a way, my prayer will not get answered and things may go wrong in my life.”
Once, God had shown me a vision of the illustration of our prayers. God explained our prayers with this vision. I saw a big rope coming down from the heaven. People who were praying were climbing up on to their ropes. As they were climbing up, they encountered thick big knots. Each time they had encountered these knots, I saw the names of people on each knot they had encountered. What does it mean? This means that the names of people on each knot and the people who are climbing on their ropes had twisted and unresolved relationships. It represented the relationships between the brethren within the church, people from the world, our own siblings and parents, and so on. Because the people did not solve their twisted relationships, they were stuck on that level hanging in the middle of their ropes. Some people tried to solve and untie their ropes but because they could not properly remedy it, they spent their whole lives trying to untie it. Even if a person unties a knot with great effort and as a person begins to climb up the rope, the person will find his/her rope tied to someone else’s rope. I used to have a cruel and harsh personality. Therefore, my wife had suffered.
But one day, I knelt down before my wife and apologized, “Honey, I have done many bad things to you!” I had cried so much on my knees and begged her. Then I began to pray again. As I continued to pray, whenever I had encountered knots, I could not continue to move up. Then I began to beg God to forgive my sins. One time, during my prayer, one of the incidents were revealed. One day, I had visited one of my friend’s home. When I had visited him, I had spotted a nice pair of shoes. Without asking that friend, I wore that pair of shoes and went home. Therefore, I had encountered another knot in my prayer rope. So I bought two pairs of nice shoes and sent them to him with a letter. All kind of things were being revealed. But although people untie their robes, they continuously make new knots. This is because people are born sinners.
When we read the bible, we can see that God’s great power is being manifested. We desire to receive such power and utilize it in our reality. But how are we to receive it? We know that God is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow. He is the same forever. God is still able to manifest His great power today and despite this truth, why don’t we manifest such power? We need to ask these questions including why has God allowed me to live in this very era? What kind of power and work will God entrust to me in this generation? We need to pray continuously. As we pray more, the more we will become spiritually thirsty. In the end, God is the director and God will entrust some kind of role to us. We will all have some type of role. What are those roles? We will be testifying at least one role within our lives. What was the climax of Deacon Stephen in his life? Deacon Stephen had lived his life to manifest and testify as a martyr. What is the reason for our existence? In order to glorify God, we need to testify at least one thing in our lives. In order to glorify God, Deacon Stephen was martyred as he was stoned. Deacon Stephen had to be stoned and martyred because the persecutor Saul had to be changed to Apostle Paul with his death. This tremendous and powerful shocking event had happened to create a motive so that Saul would become Paul. We need to quickly sense that we need to change and experience God so that we will become vessels who will be able to give motivation and impress them.
Who was the person, Joshua? Joshua was a servant to Moses. Joshua waited for Moses for forty days halfway up the mountain of Zion as Moses went to the top of the Mountain to receive God’s ten commandments. When Aaron, Miriam, and many tribal members had become corrupted carrying out lewdness acts, they had made a golden calf to idolize it. But the servant of God, Joshua and the lay believer, Caleb, had kept their faith.
People will encounter some type of opportunity to be used by God. We must all prepare and live our lives for this time when God will actually come and use us. We call this the timing of God. If you miss this timing, you may never be raised and used for the rest of your lives. You will encounter the timing of flying and jumping. To fly and jump and to be seized and utilized by God all depends on you. It depends on how much you pray, prepare, and live spiritually. You will encounter the conclusive moment in your lives. For Joshua, such a moment was when Moses had died. When Moses died, there was no leadership. But God had called Joshua. Moses was in a favorable position. Moses was taken to Mt. Sinai where God’s presence dwelt. Moses conversed with God face to face at Mt.Sinai (Exodus 33:11). Not only did Moses converse with God face to face, he directly received the ten commandment. But on the other hand, Joshua had never conversed with God in such a way. But Joshua was wholly obedient to Moses and had become his personal servant.
Through individuals, churches, and groups, God desires to utilize us in a certain way. God said, “Whoever comes and participates under the Holy Fire Ministries, I will powerfully raise and utilize her/him.” God sent me servants who support with his finances. Not only financially, but God provides me with all I need. Whenever I look back, I am greatly thankful. Whatever I think about, whatever I have in my mind, God always answers accordingly. God sees through all my thoughts and heart. But to become like this, I repeatedly, persistently and unceasingly prayed for the most of my life in the midst of darkness in the basement of my previous church where it felt like I was in a prison.
I had prayed, “God, I am not able to see anything right now. In fact, I can’t even see what is placed right in front of me. God, I feel like I am still not ready for anything. But I will still pray.” When I was in such a difficult situation, I had witnessed neighborhood church pastors having a nice time dining out to a nice restaurant and having fun outdoor. When it comes to being truly used by God, you will first go down to the very bottom and live your lives in suffering, many struggles, and with a lot of effort. But once God begins to work as He seizes you, you will be raised. We must prepare our lives for this moment. But before God comes and seizes to raise us up, we will have to live our lives as we prepare in the midst of many tears, suffering, and even sickness. This is how my wife and I were trained by God. No one knows when God will come and seize to utilize us but ultimately, we are all living our lives for that day.
Those who steadily prepare and try their best, God will create some kind of event or circumstance and it will appear random or by chance. Although from the outside, it may look like by chance or coincidence, in reality, it is not. It is planned by God.
God says, “This is your time, the time that is hidden behind coincidence.”
When Moses had died, it was time for Joshua to come onto the scene as a leader. Moses had calling and mission. He had to lead a minimum number of people that was about two million to Mt. Sinai to worship and receive the ten commandments. And possibly, the mission of Moses was to enter into the land of Canaan and live happily after. But Moses made a mistake in the middle of his mission. Moses got God angry. Even with us, when we blow up with anger, curse, irritated and delude ourselves, we will fall backward very fast. You need to be very careful about deluding yourselves and others. This is why we need to overcome and pass our tests. No matter what happens, you must pass your tests. God grant tests not to fail us but because God wants us to overcome those tests. You must perseveringly pass the tests. You must not handle God’s granted test like it is nothing. You must not treat it carelessly. The tests can make you fall into the bottomless cliff within a moment.
God’s people had finally crossed the Jordan River. Moses earnestly prayed and begged God, “God, please let me enter into the promised land! I really want to go! You have granted me a mission and I came this far. And now, why do I have to be only a bystander? I have come this far through many difficulties. I can see the land right in front of my eyes!”
It was the land of honey and milk which God had been speaking so much about. But God rejected his plea and replied, “Never talk about it again!” What was the reason that prevented Moses from entering into the promised land? There was one event when Moses struck the rock two times. Moses became angry before the people of God who were capricious or inconsistent. But still, when Moses did not show the holiness of God before them, his mission and ministry ended. There are God’s people or servants who are called to show the holiness of God. There are people who need to pray. There are people who are in the season where they need to pass tests. If we do NOT pass our tests, there will be a time when our mission or ministry will end.
God will say, “You are done with your mission and ministry. Your calling has ended.”
Then God will look for new people to entrust His mission. God may have chosen a person and entrusted them with some kind of mission, but on the other side, God always looks for a people whom God will entrust his mission. God is always prepared with replacements. When I had realized that God always has His alternatives, this scared me the most because I also do fail many tests. In order for us to seize some kind of moment of opportunity, we must obtain victory fighting against ourselves. We must pass the many tests, and we need to define ourselves. The first can become last and the last one can become first. Even if you were the first and had become last, only if you truly repent and come humbly before God, you can become first once again. Even if you have become first and received many holy gifts and power, you must remember that you can fail and fall hard within a second.
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (AMP) Rejoice always and delight in your faith; 17 be unceasing and persistent in prayer; 18 in every situation [no matter what the circumstances] be thankful and continually give thanks to God; for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus.
Do not make a frowny face. Brighten up with your facial expression. Within coincidence, there is a hidden power of God’s timing. When it comes to martyrdom, one does not just get martyred without any training of oneself. “One who is willing to die will live, one who wants to live will die.” In your daily lives, you must always pray, devote, be a self-sacrifice and have the minds of “willing to die”. A person well trained, disciplined, and prepared will easily manifest the action of faith. At the same time, just because you went through many disciplining and suffering does not mean you will become someone raised by God. Just because you have gone through some difficulties does not mean that you will be used by God. There is God’s timing within your lives. You may be waiting right now.
You may think, “I am always being disciplined. When will I be raised and used?” It may seem like you are useless for a moment. You may even feel like you are not properly obeying. You may feel like you have little faith, and it may seem like you are not receiving any blessings. But there are times when God will work for you when you put a little effort to believe, pray and obey. Yes, God will work and manifest when you are doing good but sometimes, when you put a little effort and try, God will work and invest for you because God sees your potential and possibility. When God desires to grant us some kind of power, grace, and blessing, God will observe how well we endure and are patient. And through our faith, willpower, prayer, and some kind of talent (things we are good for serving God and glorifying Him) God will work and manifest Himself to us. For a long time, God will trim our personality and character, make us endure and be patient. Sometimes, you may want to blow up and act according to your temper, but then your mission or calling may end and be shortened like Moses. You may have many words to say, but most times, you will have to swallow and bite your tongue. If you say all the things that you want to say, you may feel better at that moment, you may even feel like you have just put that person back in their place, and you may have proved or vindicated something to that person but it is better you do not act in such a way because God knows all.
When Moses died, Joshua became nervous. God repeatedly said to Joshua, “Be strong and courageous! It is important to understand who you are. Joshua, you must possess a strong mind and be courageous.” When Joshua was determined and had a strong and courageous mind, God created a mission for him. God said, “Go into the promised land and conquer the land of blessing. You have to work which is to conquer the land. Your mission and calling are to conquer the land. Wherever you go and wherever you step into, I will give to you.”
When we pray, obstacles are suddenly created. Just because there are obstacles, you must not turn around. You need to repeatedly hit and face it. When it comes to spiritual power, there are origins. One origin is from God and the other origin is from the devil. Therefore, we need to properly discern. No one knows what kind of opportunity God will grant to us and when He will grant to us. However, we need to prepare and be ready as we unceasingly pray. David mastered the sling and tended sheep in the field. But one day, when David carried out an errand for his father, a motivation was created. Goliath became motivation to David. David killed the giant enemy, Goliath, and because of this event, David appeared in the scene like a comet. But David was chased by King Saul for many years. During that time, strangers, wanderers and homeless people began joining David. “Can we participate with you?” These people followed David and when David’s course of disciplining was finished, he was able to establish the country and the people who had to follow David became soldiers. No one knows when God will work.
It is very important to know and discern the time. 이시대를 아느것이 중요하고 In this generation, we must become one and carry out the ministry of the holy fire. The opportunity has been granted to us and because we are carrying out the holy fire ministry, the opportunity is granted to us. 이시대에 여러분과 제가 하나가 되서 성령의 불사역을하고있는 우리에게 기회가 온거예요. We must arm ourselves with humility and grace so that we will properly carry out the precious work of God. 그리고 겸손과 은혜로 잘 무장해서 하나님의 귀한일을 잘 감당했으면 좋겠습니다,
Sermon by Pastor Kim, Yong Doo
The head pastor of The Lord’s Church, Korea
Author of Baptize by Blazing Fire book series
Translated by Pastor Steve Kim & Pastor Yoojin Kim
Pastors of Fire of God Church in San Francisco (Fremont)
Fire of God Church is a branch church of The Lord’s Church, Korea and is under the spiritual covering of head Pastor Kim, Yong Doo