My friend Azman, from Belfast Vineyard Church, coined the phrase radical response. It’s a good phrase that encourages us to press outward.
Excerpt from Go.Sow.
Develop a life committed to radical response.
As you go, serve, share, and pray, you will continue to grow. If you decide to begin to share God’s love—untrained—you will soon find yourself—trained. Every step we take to encourage someone enables us to grow in our ability to share our lives with others more freely and effectively.
Be determined to talk to and serve your neighbors.
Practically love the people you work with.
When you receive a God prompt, radically respond, and obey and do what you think Jesus would have you to do.
There will always be reasons why you and I choose not to respond. Our feelings aren’t up. We are tired. It is cold. It’s raining. It’s snowing. It’s too hot. It’s inconvenient. We are insecure. We feel awkward. My kids are too noisy. However, as we make a choice to act on what we value and believe, our no-go, not sharing today, attitude will melt away.
As I walk through life there are times when I don’t want to be bothered; when I want to hide and keep to myself.
I’ve discovered it’s in those very moments God often shows up. My weak moments are often the times of His greatest breakthrough; the moments of greatest healing, or the time the greatest touch of saving grace is released. One thing is sure, as I chose to respond, I always learn something from the experience which further equips me for my next encounter.
I wanted to head home from a service after praying and encouraging people. I was tired, and felt somewhat drained.
While I was heading toward the exit I walked past a young lady receiving prayer. I did notice the people praying for her. In an instant, I knew she wasn’t receiving what she was looking for. The people praying were praying, but I instinctively knew they were not connecting her to the heart of the Father. I did know she was hungry for something more.
I stopped, turned around, and joined the people praying. I placed my hand gently on her back. I then began to declare and release the Father’s love. She started to weep and gently shake. After a few moments I asked her, “Do you worship in your home?” She said, “Yes, I often sing from my heart and worship.” I gently stated, “I’ve seen you walking in your home and worshiping. The Father wants you to know He loves your worship, and He finds your expression of worship very precious.” She wept. Several other words of encouragement followed. A few moments later I thanked her for allowing me to pray and headed home.
Months passed. I went to a planning meeting for Hope Over Heroin. At the end of the meeting I gathered my notes and began to walk toward the door. A young lady stopped me and said, “Hey I want to thank you. You changed my life.”
I was stunned. I asked, “Really? When did that happen? How did I change your life? I’m not sure I know you. How do I know you?”
She mentioned when she was a new believer, she didn’t know anything about words of knowledge, or the gifts of the Spirit. She was very desperate to know the Father’s love.
One Sunday she was receiving prayer at one of our meetings and I walked up and began to encourage her. She told me when I placed my hand on her back she was suddenly overwhelmed with the love of the Father and she began to weep and experience waves of His love.
She also mentioned she knew I didn’t know anything about her, yet I had mentioned several things about her life and her relationship with Jesus. As a result she did experience the Father’s love. She then knew the Father loved her and had a plan for her life.
Here is the kicker. She was the girl I was walking past. She later won Miss Dayton, and was now praying, and encouraging others. She was flowing in the gifts of the Spirit. She was also using her position as Miss Dayton to further the Good News of the Kingdom.
I was totally blown away. I thought to myself, “You just never know what a simple obedient response to the Holy Spirit will do to change a persons life. Even when you don’t feel like it.”
This weekend she came to one of our services and thanked me again and gave me permission to share her story.