As I read John’s Book, on the ’17 Indisputable Laws of Team Work’, he talks about how one bad attitude poisons the whole team. He gives a little checklist, of attitudes that we might hold, that are stemmed in selfishness and pride, that need to die. As I read them, I saw some of them in myself, so, I am going to share them with you, so that you can join me at the cross, and we can repent and think and act like Jesus.
1. Thinking the team wouldn’t be able to get along without you.
2. Secretly (or not so secretly) believing that recent team successes are really attributable to your personal efforts, not the work of the whole team.
3. Keeping score, when praises or perks are handed out to other team members. 4. Having a hard time…
On Oct 9th, 1492 on board the Santa Maria, Christopher Columbus met with the captains Martin and Vicente Pinzon’s of his two sister ships the Pinta and the Nina. Though Columbus had waited seven anguished years to make this epic voyage into what he believed to be a God ordained mission to explore the new world, it looked like that night, the voyage would end. The two seasoned sea captains demanded this particular meeting to inform Columbus that the mission must end, for both of their crews were past the point of break down, and were planning mutiny if they refused to immediately return to Spain. It was no idle threat,
“Columbus knew that the Pinzon’s were not exaggerating the gravity of the situation. He himself had to admit that all week long the men on his own particular ship were grumbling. Once he had even heard one jokingly suggest that they throw their captain overboard and return with the story that he lost his balance while taking sight on the polestar. Columbus knew that it would only be a matter of time before it would cease to be a joke. In anguish he turned away from the Pinzon’s. Striding to the aft window, he gazed at the dying rays of the sun on the endless expanse of sea behind them. All his dreams…
There was an even deeper reason for his despair, one which he never divulged to anyone. He had long been convinced that God had given him a special, almost mystical mission: To carry the Light of Christ into the darkness of undiscovered heathen lands, and to bring the inhabitants of those lands to the holy faith of Christianity. His own name: Christopher, which literally means ‘Christ-bearer’, was to him a clear indication that God had called him to do this. Indeed, he found confirmation of his call almost everywhere he looked. He would quote in his journal such lines of Scripture as those in Isaiah which meant so much to him. Is 49:1 ¶ Listen, O isles, unto me; and hearken, ye people, from far; The LORD hath called me from the womb; from the bowels of my mother hath he made mention of my name. …v6b I will also give thee for a light to the Gentiles, that thou mayest be my salvation unto the end of the earth.
The account goes on to state that Columbus managed to negotiate three more days of westward travel, and it was on the third day, land was spotted.
Yet, greater than this, must be the answer, from Gods perspective, which is always the gospel of Jesus Christ. So then, the question I ask myself is this: “What does God think about Christopher Columbus?”
I read this article, and I quote:
Irish and French Catholics have argued that Columbus, who “brought the Christian faith to half the world,” should be named a saint. Though the move had the approval of Pope Pius IX (reign 1846–1878), Columbus was never canonized because he fathered an illegitimate child, and there was no proof he had performed a miracle.
Between 1493 and 1820, Spain sent some 15,585 missionaries to the Americas.
Columbus had great moral and physical courage. Again and again he faced mutinous sailors, armed rebels, frightful storms, and fighting Indians.
Christopher Columbus had a mystic belief that God intended him to sail the Atlantic Ocean in order to spread Christianity. He said his prayers several times daily. Columbus wrote what he called a Book of Prophecies, which is a compilation of passages Columbus selected from the Bible which he believed were pertinent to his mission of discovery. What a person believes is what determines his interpretation of life and history and inspires his vision and purpose in life. Columbus’s own writings prove that he believed that God revealed His plan for the world in the Bible, the infallible Word of God. Columbus believed that he was obeying the mission God staked out for his life when he set sail west across the Atlantic Ocean.
If we honestly believe the gospel, and these words of Jesus recorded in John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me, then in light of the great commission, it looks like Columbus authentically heard the voice of God and radically obeyed Him.
Did he do it right? Absulutely NOT! The great commission reads: Matt 28: 18 And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.
19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen. (Teaching them! NOT enslaving and slaughtering them)
Mark 1:1 ¶ The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God;
2 As it is written in the prophets, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee.
3 The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.
Well, opening the door for over 15,000 Christian missionaries to come and bring the gospel to North America, sure looks like something that puts a smile upon Gods face.
Coming as ‘conquistadors’ to conquer, enslave, and oppress the resident peoples of the land is NOT the will of God. Jesus washed His disciples feet, NOT conquered them with the sword. His kingdom moves forward in love, not slaughter.
Yet, despite the atrocities of Christopher Columbus, he did open the door of the gospel to North America and the new world, and for this, God Himself commends him.
During the final chapter of his life, historians record that Columbus sequestered himself in a monastery to seek Gods forgiveness for his many crimes against humanity. Reportedly, in one of his journal entries, God did speak to him, and explain to him that though he failed in obeying Him in bringing the gospel to America, His plan would not be thwarted, and that Columbus was forgiven and allowed to enter heaven and the plan of God would move forward.
So, what is my position on Christopher Columbus?
i’m reminded of the famous quote: ‘Those that refuse to learn from history, are doomed to repeat it’
Studying his life reminded me of my sea-faring days, and how the call of God has revolutionized my life and priorities.
I often tell people, I am very sincere in all that I do, but as I have grown older and hopefully wiser, I can see how I have often been sincerely wrong in some of the decisions I have made in life.
There is no doubt in my mind that Columbus authentically heard God to bring the gospel to North America, but the ‘gospel’ he brought was tainted by colonial teachings of conquest, that resulted in much needless bloodshed and atrocities, far from the mind and heart of God.
I remember vividly, while reading Mike Bickle’s book: ‘Growing in the Prophetic’ the lessons he and his pastoral staff learned in attempting to pastor the prophetic and embrace it, without bringing chaos to the church. He was asked about ‘false prophets’, or people proclaiming the voice of the Lord, and how they got that way. He was asked: Do these people not hear God clearly or make up stuff out of their imagination? Pastor Mike stated: As we have interviewed people who seemed to give erroneous prophetic words, we discovered something interesting. In most cases, we discerned that these people had actually heard Gods voice clearly, but the errors usually occurred in 2 main categories: Interpretation and Application. Many heard God clearly, but attempted to interpret what God said through their own agenda or understanding that resulted in conclusion that were erroneous on how God wanted what He said applied in our midst. (https://www.chrisaomministries.com/2017/01/the-prophetic-3)
How I wish Columbus knew this!!! I believe he authentically heard God to sail to the new world and bring the gospel here, but God NEVER told him to enslave, slaughter and abuse the natives living here, nor did God make him a tyrant and dictator, so corrupt that word finally reached Spain to have him removed from his post.
How does this affect me personally? I am trying to add to the work of God in USA, and so am learn history from God’s perspective. Having attempted to love and walk with native Americans since 1995, I am interested in how God has been visiting the people, before the white man came as conquistadors, and I fully understand how natives would like to remove Columbus Day from our national calendar. In light of the atrocities he committed, I see their perspective, yet from God’s perspective, Columbus, with all his faults and horrors, was sent by heaven to bring the gospel to the new world, and in this, he was wildly successful in his time, mobilizing over 15,000 missionaries to come to what was then uncharted wilderness to bring the gospel of Jesus Christ. Whether you endorse or condemn the work of the thousands of Franciscan and Dominican monks who came here, I choose to honor their faith and legacy in Jesus.
 Marshall, Peter, and David Manuel. “One.” Essay. In Light and the Glory. Fleming H Revell Co, 1980.
I’m with this brother. I HATE how our government has treated natives, and know that only in Jesus is there healing for this country.
Notice here the statement of the conquistadors; “One friar could accomplish peaceably what it might take a thousand soldiers to do forcibly, so they made it a policy to encourage these missionary efforts”
Which is why I strongly preach Christian involvement in politics, as we must be the ones dictating morality and government policy in light of the love and fear of God..
Phew! 80,000 Indians baptized in this ministry, Glory to God!!
Such was the pattern for living that God set down, as He began His work in this country: and it is as valid today as it was then. For He does not go back on His word, nor has He changed His intent.
Treachery, betrayal and murder are nothing new on North American soil.
Yet, we are looking at the work of God through Christopher Columbus, so consider this account from his journal, while caught in a storm at sea:
God loved Columbus, and like all of us, commanded him to have faith and trust in Him alone. Columbus is in heaven and those of us who serve Jesus, will see him.
In conclusion, I have decided to endorse and love Christopher Columbus for his authentic faith and attempt to obey Jesus. I’ll end with Teddy Roosevelt’s quote:
Columbus was a doer of daring deeds, and for this I commend him. I do not agree with some of his rape, pillaging and slaughter of natives, nor do I fully endorse the authority and doctrines of the Roman Catholic Church, nor the decisions of the Spanish monarchy and conquistadors. Yet, despite all of this filth, God used Christopher Columbus, and I end with story I heard told by Kenny Blacksmith, former grand chief of the Cree people.
In Native American tradition, much is passed on orally, to preserve the history and traditions of the tribe.Kenny tells of a story that elders passed down for countless generations, as they sought Creator in their own way, many spiritual people among the tribe had the exact same dream, of boats coming across the great waters (Atlantic ocean) that brought short black robed men, who carried with them ‘The book of God’ (the Bible). I interpret this to mean that native american elders accurately heard God foretelling of the coming of these black robed Jesuit and Franciscan priests as missionaries to their people, who brought to them the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ through Gods holy word. For this reason alone, these missionaries were not slaughtered, as natives recognized that God Himself had sent them.
Last year, I purchased my own domain name chrisaomministries.com, and moved all the blog content over there. Quite frankly, I am questioning my decision, because: 1. It costs more money to maintain and 2. I miss the chat support provided by WordPress premium.
The question to be answered is: ‘Will we do something like this to help the 140 homeless veterans here in Tulsa, Oklahoma?’ (this is the official published statistic, though I think the number is more like 400-500, after visiting homeless camps and meeting with homeless ministers who deal with our friends on the street daily)
As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the householdoffaith
I am not merely a community development organization, but actively seek to expand and support the Christian cause and to expand the kingdom of God wherever I can. I cannot be moved solely by human need, but work with Christian organizations that believe the Bible is the Word of God.
I am convinced that Bible schools are the most important need in every community, because the Word of God is absolute truth, with the ability to transform lives, and show people how to live. Unless people learn right from wrong behavior, simply feeding or clothing them become enablement, instead of empowerment, and they never learn of Gods design to provide for them, through meaningful work and careful stewardship of our God given gifts and resources.
We teach them how to fish.
Having made this premise known. Here are the two projects we are currently working on in the nation of Kenya.
Pastore Evans Mukwa asked me to send him information in 2012 on how to start a Bible school to educate and disciple his leaders in his church, and since then has graduated around 30 students through the IVBI curriculum.
Then, he awoke one morning to discover military at his door with several orphan children they had found in the villages, and asked him if he could take them in. He quickly fed them breakfast, and at church that night announced his new orphan program. He would serve community breakfast at the church, and then asked families to take these children home to sleep at night for the security of the children.
And so it has begun, with 13 children in the communities care initially. We set up an account on Western Union and began to send small amounts of money to help with school fees and the childrens immediate needs. Over time, we we introduced to pastor Victor Otieno Gumba from Nyatike in Migori province, who was also helping widows and orphans.
Pastor Victor ended up with 58 children, and presently helps 98 through his program. I am not sure of his Bible school development, but he has been appoved by Victory to start a school, and curriculum has been sent to him.
The ‘make disciples of all nations’ part is quite the commission!
So, I find myself working to do something of eternal value with my life, and in this case, in the nation of Kenya.
Update: The well got drilled and we raised funds to purchase a solar powered pumping station. Now we need to construct a wash house, so that people coming from surrounding villages can use the bathroom in a sanitary manner and not pollute the well. Also, since the system is solar powered, it only runs during the day. We need a reservoir that can be filled in daylight hours to provide water after dark. To make a long story short, pastor Victor had a the teens there make mud bricks and get ready to build walls. Yet the cost of the metal roof, reservoir and fixtures is 2300USD. As I discussed this with one of the donors, he agreed to do a matching fund of $1000, so when people donate$1000, we will actually have $2000 towards this project.
Making mud bricks
In Eldoret, we are working on the Gardens of Grace greenhouse project. We paid to have the soil samples done, then sent money donated to pay for soil preparation, site prep and fencing to keep stray livestock out of the site.
The uncleared land
Clearing the land
We still need $4200USD, to construct a small caretakers cottage on site, and purchase the first greenhouse. By faith, God has provided this need, as this project will provide for orphans for life as we manage it well.
Of course, please pray for the financial needs of our family. Just working and paying bills has been a grind, and somehow we fell behind on weekly bills, yet our eyes are on Jesus to catch us up. WE have an invitation to fly to Belize to help pioneer another two BIble schools, and of course to preach the gospel and demonstrate Gods power. This requires prayer, faith, time off work here, and around $3000.00. Gods will, Gods bill. https://www.chrisaomministries.com/2019/11/mission-belize
With overseas projects, 100% of all donations go to the project minus any international transfer fees. (On smaller amounts Western Union and taxes cost around $20), for amounts over $1000.00, our bank charges $68 for a bank to bank international transfer.)
I believe the greatest need in the world is seasoned Christian leaders, who honestly care about the people they lead and the impact they have on their communities and society as a whole.
Yet, in many cases there has been a great disconnect between successful business leaders and the local churches they attend. There are legitimate reasons for this in many cases: I have met successful business people that have honestly stated: If I ran my company they way they run this church, I would be bankrupt in 30 days. Business should be win/win the clients receiving great value for the products and services they purchase, the suppliers making a fair profit on their goods and services.
Yet, where does a Christian leader go for help? To the pastor trying to effectively minister to the business community in their area, AND to the business owner honestly determined to make an eternal difference in their calling through their business, this book is written for them.
The author has spent over ten years navigating the jungle of construction contracting victoriously serving Jesus through it all.
The heart of this book came from an encounter the author has with his pastor in 2007. A wealthy businessman had come forward for prayer at a church service at Victory Christian Center in Tulsa, Oklhaoma, led by the legendary Billy joe Daugherty. Billy Joe asked the author to join him in praying for this beleaguered businessman, and he looked the man in the eye and said: Sir, why don’t you join one of our small group Bible studies. The leader looked Billy Joe in the eye and said: ‘Billy Joe, you know I can’t do that. I have money, and every time I give Christians access to my life, they treat me like a walking ATM, constantly looking for me to pay for their latest missions trip or outreach.I’d rather stay home and watch a movie with my family’ I interjected: ‘ Exactly! Seems that about every missionary in town drops by my office when they are in town looking for a donation, it would be good if there was a Bible study where leaders could actually study Gods Word for answers, without getting hit on for money.” Then Billy Joe looked me in the eye and said: ‘That’s a great idea, why don’t you start something’.
And so I did. With one of my business partners initially, we began to meet Tuesday mornings from 7:30-8:30AM at the local coffee shop, and since 2008, we have continued to meet. We read the book “The Richest Man Who Ever Lived: King Solomon’s Secrets to Success, Wealth, and Happiness’ by Stephen K Scott. The gist of the book is this: find a group of 6-10 people who will commit to reading a chapter of Proverbs every day, and putting it into practice in their homes and businesses. Since there are 31 chapters of Proverbs, it puts you through this book every month, and our weekly Bible studies are very simple to calculate. Let say that a particular Tuesday falls on the 15th of the month, we read Proverbs 15 that morning, each of us reading 2-3 verses, and at the end, each person shares what they got out of that particular reading, or anything else the Lord might put on their heart.
Over the past 10 years, we have met weekly with leaders in both business and ministry, and read the Proverb chapter of the day, and deliberately sought God for wisdom. He has answered and given us a portion of His excellence, and we have learned that Holy Spirit led leaders, fully grounded in the Word of God, are the greatest need of this generation.
As I have read these two apparently contradictory commandments from Proverbs, I hope you see this clearly.
Pr 26:4 Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest thou also be like unto him.
5 Answer a fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own conceit.
To the business owner with a foolish employee, how are they to respond?
Verse 4 says not to respond to their foolishness, yet verse 5 commands that they be answered and corrected, and humbled from their pride.
Is this situational ethics?
No, this is wisdom in working human relationships in the business world, and requires a walk with God that causes the leader to know exactly what to do in each possibly complex situation.
Over the years, many precious pearls of insight into the Scripture have been given to our group, so I have compiled this rich storehouse of truth into a series of leadership motivational talks, that I’m sure will be of great use to many in the kingdom.
Hosea 2:“In that day, I will answer,”
says the Lord.
“I will answer the sky as it pleads for clouds….
And the sky will answer the earth with rain.
Then the earth will answer the thirsty cries
of the grain, the grapevines, and the olive trees.
And they in turn will answer,
Then the earth will answer the thirsty cries
of the grain, the grapevines, and the olive trees.
And they in turn will answer,
Then the earth will answer the thirsty cries
of the grain, the grapevines, and the olive trees.
And they in turn will answer,
Romans 1: 20 For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see his invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God.
Hosea 4 Hear the word of the Lord, O people of Israel!
The Lord has brought charges against you, saying:
“There is no faithfulness, no kindness,
no knowledge of God in your land. 2 You make vows and break them;
you kill and steal and commit adultery.
There is violence everywhere—
one murder after another. 3 That is why your land is in mourning,
and everyone is wasting away.
Even the wild animals, the birds of the sky,
and the fish of the sea are disappearing.
To Know creation, we must know Creator, and He can only be known through Jesus: https://chrisaomministries.com/2017/02/27/do-you-want-to-go-to-heaven/
As I read this mornings account, I am reminded of our spiritual responsibility as leaders, to exercise God’s authority in the earth, through prayer, in this, our generation:
Ex 17:11 As long as Moses held up the staff in his hand, the Israelites had the advantage. But whenever he dropped his hand, the Amalekites gained the advantage.
We must submit first to God, and His authority in our lives, then from that position, use spiritual authority to change our generation.
In order to have authority, we must submit to authority, then we can do true eternal damage to darkness:
Clearly, in Jesus, we have authority from heaven to be exercised in the earth. In order for the kingdom to go forward, we must continue to stand for righteousness and holiness, purity and God’s power.
“Father, I stand for my home, my community, my state, and my nation before Your throne, exercising Your authority against principalities and powers, and every demonic power and person serving darkness. I enforce Your kingdom in righeousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost, and expect Your power to manifest today, destroying wickedness, and prospering Your people, in the name and authority of Jesus, Amen!”
As I read this morning’s Bible reading in One Year Bible, I began to think about broken people trying to leave broken lifestyles. Let’s read it together.
Ex 13:17 When Pharaoh finally let the people go, God did not lead them along the main road that runs through Philistine territory, even though that was the shortest route to the Promised Land. God said, “If the people are faced with a battle, they might change their minds and return to Egypt.”
18 So God led them in a roundabout way through the wilderness toward the Red Sea.[a] Thus the Israelites left Egypt like an army ready for battle.[b]
We all know the story, 10 plagues, Moses and Pharoah, “Let my people go!”
Imagine if you will the mindset of these people. Beaten, broken, enslaved for as long as anyone could remember, suddenly delivered by the hand of God, yet not yet fully trusting God fully yet.
Remember when God called David, and Samuel had a hard time accepting it:
1 Samuel 16:7 But the Lord said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart.
He knows what we are made of, and what it takes to build a strong foundation of faith into our hearts, that one day will allow us to be the warriors, delivers, and victors in life’s battles.
If any of you have seen the movie ‘Captain America’ there is a scene where the commanding officer says something like, ‘there is no way we can make a soldier out of him’, then in one of the drills, Cap falls upon a grenade to protect the other guys in his platoon, and the hardened soldier gets some instruction. He had looked at the small stature and fraility of the man, yet his courage in battle revealed his heart.
In this case, God knew the children of Israel were not ready for a battle yet with the Philistines, so He led them on a longer route.
Anyone read the Christian classic: ‘Hinds Feet on Hinds Places?”
It is the journey where a fictional character named ‘poor little much afraid’ is transformed through a journey with the Shepherd, to receive her hinds feet to be able to leap around the mountains with a new name: ‘Grace and glory” It’s a great read, but the point that comes to mind is the way that that Shepherd leads her on their journey, the horror of being led directly away from her destination into the desert, instead of up the mountain.
Seems the Shepherd was wiser than her though, because near the end of the book, she discovers the extra miles in the desert had strengthened her to climb the steep dangerous cliffs, and in exhilaration she discovered she had conquered her fears, and was able to leap the tall heights with ease and joy.
Over the years, I have worked with broken people, each struggling with some deep dark secret pattern of destructive behavior. Addicts especially come to mind, and how relevant this verse is in their lives. They cannot be around alcohol or drugs of any form for some time, until they become strong, the temptation is too great.
In this Bible reading, the children of Israel were about to come in between a rock and a hard place, with far worse than the Philistines to face, the entire army of Egypt was about to back them up to the Red sea, and you know the rest of the story, God fought for them that day, as a whirlwind, a sea parter, and One who is altogether faithful.
Maybe you are in a fight for your life today. Literally, or spiritually, it doesn’t matter.
1 Corinthians 10:13 (ASV)
13 There hath no temptation taken you but such as man can bear: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation make also the way of escape, that ye may be able to endure it.
Jesus is the way, and also the waymaker. He will provide, He will deliver, He will lead you away from battles you are not yet qualified to fight. He knows, He cares, He loves.
“Father, I need you to lead and guide me today. Show me Your will and Your way. Deliver me from the brutal circumstances that seek to destroy me, and show me the straight and narrow way Jesus promised is available to me. Amen”