Honor’s Authority – The Key to Kingdom Influence
God’s House of Praise Chauvin Foursquare Church
Choose & Plant
There is a great need in the body of Christ today for stability in the life of believers. Those who become planted in a local church have stability as a natural byproduct. When families begin to serve the Lord together in the local church, there is a quality God releases in their lives that can be received in no other way.
It seems that over the last several decades an attitude has crept into the church that de-emphasizes the importance of being committed to the house of the Lord. It minimizes the importance of being a part of a strong local church. The fruit of this attitude has negatively affected the lives of believers. It appears there are many in the body of Christ today that have placed the Church, the gathering of believers, last on their list. This trend has been excused by many as “changing times.” I am not sure that the times have changed as much as hearts have changed. People have become more committed to themselves than the Lord. For some, pleasure is what they desire more than being in church. Others have idolized their own feelings that have been hurt in some way or another.
I realize everyone is busy. However, hasn’t everyone always been busy? We always have time to do what we want to do. People will make time to do what they really want to do. Could it be that some believers have allowed their love for the local church to grow cold? Could it be that we need God to come and revive our heart and passion for the church once again? Could it be that we need God to deliver us from selfishness that has crept into our lives?
Some today have become spiritual floaters. They go from church to church and never have a place where they become a vital part. God has a place for all of us. It is in that place that God will cause us to be fruitful and productive in the Kingdom of God.
God’s desire for every believer is to be planted. To not attend church or to move around from church to church is not God’s will for our lives. We need to hear what God’s Word says concerning the local church and its importance in the lives of believers.
13 Those that be planted in the house of the Lord shall flourish in the courts of our God.
14 They shall still bring forth fruit in old age; they shall be fat and flourishing;
Get Somewhere and Plant It!
As we read the passage of scripture above, we can see the desire and will of the Lord clearly stated. His desire is for His people to be planted in His house. God desires for His people to have roots in a local church.
Planted Means Stationary
Have you ever told your child to “plant it”? The word planted conveys the meaning of being stationary or permanent. When something is planted, it does not move around. It is a wonderful thing that each morning when you head to gather fruits from your garden that you don’t have to go searching for your plants which seem to try to run away each evening as you sleep.
The Greek word for church is Ekklesia which means “a calling out and assembly.” Alone you are a member of the body of Christ, but when members assemble, we have church. Sitting at your house is not God’s best for you. Since the church is “a calling out” or “the called-out ones,” then know that God is calling you out of your house to be planted in His house.
Planting Produces Breakthrough
The scripture says those who are planted will flourish. The word flourish is defined as “to break forth as a bud.” In other words – breakthrough! Those who are planted will have breakthrough in their lives. This is the promise of God that will be fulfilled as you allow His planting to transpire in your life. Flourish is also defined as “to blossom and to spread.” Nothing blossoms without being planted. Planting is the prerequisite for the satisfying of God’s promise.
There are testimonies that bear witness that getting planted in a local church will bring stability into one’s life. It produces the blessing of God that brings forth fruitfulness, increase, and breakthrough.
The Perfect Church
Some refuse to become part of a local church (planted) because of the imperfections of the other members. They want the church to be perfect and use that reasoning to excuse their disobedience to God’s command. Amazingly enough, the ones who expect the church to be flawless are the ones who have the character of Christ perfected in them the least (the most imperfect). Many people expect the church to be something that they themselves are not. It is like the man who looked for the perfect church and finally found it – it became imperfect the moment he joined.
God Does the Choosing
1 And it shall be, when thou art come in unto the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee for an inheritance, and possessest it, and dwellest therein;
2 That thou shalt take of the first of all the fruit of the earth, which thou shalt bring of thy land that the Lord thy God giveth thee, and shalt put it in a basket, and shalt go unto the place which the Lord thy God shall choose to place his name there. Deuteronomy 26:1-2
Here we see a specific command for God’s people to “go unto the place which the Lord thy God shall choose”. God already has a place He has chosen for us. There is a local church that God will reveal to every believer to be planted in. God knows exactly what we need to grow and develop.
Living in a free country, we have become accustomed to doing what we want to do, when we want to do it. We don’t want to submit our right to choose to anyone. We may even regard this as a fundamental right. We can see this right given to us in the Bible when Joshua stood up and said, “Choose this day who you will serve.” There is blessing and consequence involved in the choices we make.
The Shopping List
It seems as though many people have a shopping list when they come to visit a local church for the first time. Most lists people arrive with are not God’s desires. Most lists of requirements that people have for a local church involve convenience rather than commandment.
For example, a nursery ministry is not a commandment, but a convenience for the parents. Many people make their decisions based upon appearance, performance, and availability of these conveniences. In some situations, where the nursery ministry is not available, God may be calling us (or those with the shopping list) to be planted there to assist that local church institute that particular ministry. Thank God for those whom God calls to aid in the pioneering process, otherwise there would be none of these ministries in any church today!
Where is the Place?
You may ask, “How do I find the place where God wants me to be planted?” Here are seven basic principles that will help you in locating the place where God wants you to be planted.
- Witness of Your Spirit Man
There will be a sensing and a knowing on the inside that you are with spiritual family. There will be a drawing of the Spirit of the Lord to that house of worship. Inside there will be a sense of peace and a perception that you are in the right place. It will be like a “green light” in your spirit man.
- You Will Be Spiritually Challenged to Go Beyond Where You Are Presently
Will my faith be stirred to believe for greater than what I am presently experiencing? Is the pastor preaching the Word of God or “Readers Digest”? Do the messages challenge me to go further in God, or does it pacify my flesh into a place of complacency?
True pastors feed and protect their flock. They will challenge their congregation to reach further and higher. They will spend the bulk of their time challenging believers to get out of their comfort zone rather than pacifying the spiritually lazy who want to go nowhere. Pastors who pacify the spiritually lazy create spiritual nursing homes. You are not called to retire, but to refire!
- The Local Church Will Be Suitable for You and Your Family
The root word for suitable is suit. A good suit needs to fit correctly. You should be able to “fit and flow” with that body of believers. The apostle Paul said the church is “fitly joined together” (Ephesians 4:16). You should feel that you are an integral part of something that is not only affecting your life, but the lives of others also.
Flowing with a local church means there will be an opportunity for your ministry to function. You need to ask yourself these questions: Will I be regulated to a pew warmer or will there be an opportunity for my gift to function? Is everything a “one-man show” or are there others involved in different areas of the ministry? Will I be activated to function or put on reserve status indefinitely?
This does not mean that your gift will be able to be implemented instantaneously. There is a time of proving that needs to be observed. Yet, you can get some inclination of these things by observing those around you.
- You Must Agree with The Vision and Direction of The Local Church
The prophet Amos said that people cannot walk together unless they agree with one another (Amos 3:3). If you cannot come into agreement with the vision, plan, and purpose of that house of the Lord, then you need to look elsewhere.
There also must be doctrinal agreement. If there are major differences, there will be great difficulty involved in flowing with that local church. This does not mean your position doctrinally will never be challenged by fresh revelation. Every historical move of God brought greater understanding and revelation than the previous. In God’s progressive restoration of truth, our doctrinal positions will always be shifting to some degree because of spiritual illumination. However, to flow with a body of believers there must be doctrinal agreement on certain fundamental issues.
- You Will Be Equipped, Empowered, And Motivated to Do the Will of God
Can you be equipped to do what God has called you to do and fulfill your destiny? Will you be empowered for the works of service and be activated into your membership ministry? Are you motivated to arise out of a place of passivity and move forward?
“In the first-century church, the word minister did not refer to a title of a clergy position, but to a service rendered by the believer. Every Saint has the calling, privilege, and power to minister the Holy Spirit, the Word of God, and graces of God to others. Every local church should be a congregation of ministers.”
-Dr. Bill Hamon
The Day of the Saints (Page 30)
The ministry gifts of apostle, prophet, evangelist, pastor, and teacher are in the church for equipping believers to fulfill their personal ministry. Every believer has a God-given ministry and function in the Church and outside the Church. You must be in a place that is equipping, empowering, and motivating you to operate in your gifting.
- There Will Be Spiritual Food to Eat
The place to which He calls us will be one of spiritual sustenance. You should leave spiritually full and satisfied as if you had been served a five-course meal. Course one may be fellowship with other believers at the beginning of service. Course two might be praise and worship as you minister to the Lord. Third course might be a time when you can take great delight in giving to the house of the Lord. Then the fourth main course of teaching and preaching from the Word of God that brings strength and nourishment to your spirit and soul. Meals are not complete without dessert. So as your last course, there is spiritual ministry near the end of service as one who is receiving or ministering the Spirit of the Lord to others.
- There Will Be a Sense of Belonging
God desires for us to be part of a conventional spiritual family. When you find “the place,” you will begin to have a sense that you have come into the company of those of “like precious faith.” You should not feel as though you are an alien from another planet.
There are some who feel that they never belong because of rejection issues within their lives. They feel rejected before anyone has been given the chance to reject them. This type of believer must get planted in a place where they can first get healed and delivered of their rejection. The spirit of rejection can destroy God-ordained relationships if we do not allow ourselves to be set free. The first step towards freedom from rejection is to get planted in a local church that understands deliverance and healing.
Divine connections happen when people are positioned correctly in the kingdom of God!
Now that we have covered some teaching which would help you to determine the local church in which the Lord assigns you to be planted in, we will look more closely at God’s House of Praise Chauvin Foursquare Church. You probably already consider yourself a member of this house or you would not be reading this post. We want you to know that you are loved and valued. We believe that as you are planted, the Lord is going to reveal to you gifting’s that you may not even be aware of, but in order to remain planted, you must resolve that you are where the Lord has called you to remain planted. Storms of life may come, but your commitment to remain planted is the only thing that will help you weather the hard times and to come through the storm stronger than you were before.
The Lord requires commitment from us. He reminds us that we must count the cost, take up our cross and follow Him daily. When you choose to be planted in a local church, you must mature to the point where you will remain in the face of offense or when the Pastor gives you instructions that you don’t particularly agree with. As a matter of fact, when the pastor, who has been given the responsibility to feed and protect you, gets a word from the Lord and delivers that to you, you must be willing to heed that word.
I heard a testimony of a minster who mentioned that when he was younger, a new family moved to the church. They had a beautiful teenage daughter that was his age who he began to like. One day his pastor came to him and told him, “you don’t need to be talking with that girl.” He said that he felt defensive inside because all he was doing was talking to her, but he submitted to his pastor’s authority. Months later this family left the church and another guy in the community who began to date her was arrested for being accused of raping her and later found to be not guilty. Had he not heeded his pastor’s advice, that could have been him in that storm. (Some of the details of this may not be correct, but the point is the same). A pastor may be given wisdom and instruction from the Lord for you to protect you, and the more you don’t initially agree with what they are telling you should indicate that much more why you should honor them and obey.
Let’s look at God’s House of Praise more closely.
- Our Mission
God’s House of Praise Foursquare Church is a family of generations and nations! We exist to love, honor, worship & glorify the Lord Jesus, and we want to grow as followers of Christ by helping make disciples and build healthy Godly families. We reach out to our communities with God’s love and grace with the good news of salvation and life found through Jesus Christ!
Up, In, Out
- Up – Up refers to our relationship with the Lord made possible by Jesus’ death and resurrection. Through study of the Word of God and prayer we cultivate a friendship with the Lord where we love Him with all our heart, mind, soul, and strength.
- In – The second commandment is to love our neighbors. Unity in the body of Christ is paramount in accomplishing Kingdom goals. We desire to stand with one another and challenge one another to grow in Christ. We are fellow laborers in Christ Jesus.
- Out – Jesus’ command to go into all the world and preach the Gospel to all creation gives us a mission to make the difference in a lost world around us filled with hurting and broken people. What a blessing to be called to love like He loves. We desire to make an eternal difference.
- Our Beliefs
As part of the International Foursquare Gospel Church family, we partner with over 60,000 churches worldwide in celebrating and sharing about Jesus Christ our Savior, Healer, Baptizer in the Holy Spirit, and Soon Coming King. Based upon the truth that “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever” Hebrews 13:8, we teach God’s Word and His eternal truth proclaiming that he still saves and forgives as He did in biblical times and that God’s Word has the answers for our needs today!
A full list of our core beliefs can be found at http://www.ghop.la/about
- Our Leaders
Leaders at God’s House of Praise Church desire to Love the Lord by service to Him as well as to all peoples He has created. Life Team Leaders as well as our Pastor is available at all services to agree in prayer with you for whatever your need. We believe in standing on God’s promises because He is Faithful and True!
“But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant. And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be humbled; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.” Matthew 23:11-12
“Remember them which have the rule over you, who have spoken unto you the word of God: whose faith follow, considering the end of their conversation.” Hebrews 13:7
“Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you.” Hebrews 13:17
So, have you decided that God’s House of Praise is the Local Church that the Lord desires you to be a part of? If so, commit to serve the Lord as well as His house with all your might. God is a good father, and He will cause you to grow as you are faithfully planted. The rewards are numerous and today is the day that begins the best journey of your life as you are challenged to grow in your relationship with the Lord! Eternity is just ahead.
This information was typed and placed together in structure at the leading of the Holy Spirit by Dane Theriot. These ideas are not original ideas, and most of the material comes from several books as well as class notes taken as these growing principles were taught at Ramp School of Ministry by either Pastor Casey Doss, Pastor Stephen Womack, or Pastor Brian Beasley. Also, much of the typing above are directly from text books used during the courses. Planted by Robert Gay was used extensively for the above lesson, and I did not cite each line borrowed from the book because most of the paper above would be covered with citations. The use of this document is for the provoking of members of GHOP to grow in the Lord. All credit for the above thoughts really belongs to the Holy Spirit and it was typed in order to share with no desire of financial benefit to Dane Theriot. I highly recommend for further training to obtain your own copy of the texts listed in this paragraph and to allow this paper to stir you in the Spirit in the knowledge that the Lord is more interested in many areas of our lives than we are most of the time. He really does love us more than we know.