PRAISE GOD IT’S MONDAY!
A WEEKLY ‘WWW (world-wide word) OF ENCOURAGEMENT’
TO THOSE IN MINISTRY

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Issue No: 346     Published: 09 Jun 2008

TRANSFORMATION OF THE CHURCH: 3. FROM KINGS TO KINGDOM (continued)

Today's testimony is difficult for me to write. You will likely think that I am stupid, mad, weird, or perhaps, ridiculously super-spiritual! For I want to talk about the role of money in my life and my change, over time, from a 'kings' to a 'kingdom' attitude towards it.

I am a businessman both by nature and nurture. I was brought up in a family where my father was successful businesswise and I obtained a commerce and administration degree at university.

I was very successful, firstly in the corporate world, becoming the Marketing Manager for one of New Zealand's largest, and very conservative, insurance company's, at around age 30.

Having always had a hankering to work for myself however, I left this job to set up businesses on my own account. By 40 I was, on paper, a millionaire. A great example of the success of the prosperity doctrine - except I wasn't a Christian!

In the 1987 share market crash I lost everything. I gave my heart to Jesus as I stood in the queue waiting to register for the dole, the unemployment benefit that we are fortunate to have in our social welfare state of New Zealand. I had come to the end of my tether.

My values changed - at least partially. Now I knew that money wasn't everything. The sun still comes up in the morning even when you have none!

The Lord was gracious to me and I built up another successful business. We double tithed. We also gifted a lot of money to the church. Distributed a discipleship course free of charge on a large scale. Classic prosperity doctrine stuff this time! We gave lots of OUR money to God! Did lots of good.

One day, the Lord told me He would bring along a buyer for our business within 1 month and then I was to go into fulltime ministry. On the last day of the month, the buyer came. I did the logical 'king thing' and invested OUR money in a property development designed to provide us with an income so that we wouldn't be a burden on others in ministry.

The Lord however had other ideas! Costs went up, prices came down and once again, I was declared bankrupt! Oh dear, not the way it is meant to happen according to the prosperity preachers.

Through this experience however, I learned the 'kingdom way' in regards to money. I came to understand the meaning of that difficult to explain line in the Lord's Prayer;

11 Give us today our daily bread. (Matthew 6:11)

For then, and now, we became dependent upon Him for our daily provision. We own nothing but our household furniture. I haven't personally earned any income for more than 7 years. We have lived on Kathy's salary as a Theatre Nurse at our local hospital. She is amazing, for women do like security.

Last time I went to Africa, the Lord provided the fare, but no spending money. I went through Africa literally on 50 cents a day. I took away $30 for 2 months. After a week I was down to $2 before the Lord started providing. It was not easy. Particularly for one used to making money through my own efforts.

But what I have now learned is that everything I have is His. It is all HIS money, not mine. Even though we now had nothing and couldn't support all the good causes we previously had, we were walking more deeply in faith and in God's will. Under my previous 'kingly' understanding and life I would have been welcomed with open arms into any church in the world for we gave liberally with no conditions attached. Now however, as we endeavour to live a 'kingdom' lifestyle, financially, we can't. The value in this is hard to understand in a kingly world but it is kingdom understanding.

22 When Jesus heard this, he said to him, “You still lack one thing. Sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” 23 When he heard this, he became very sad, because he was a man of great wealth. 24 Jesus looked at him and said, “How hard it is for the rich to enter the kingdom of God! 25 Indeed, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” (Luke 18:22-5)

The harsh reality and fallacy of the prosperity doctrine is that some people have the ability to make money while others don't, irrespective of whether we are a Christian or not. This ability is inborn rather than learned. In our clothing operation we have an 11 year old volunteer, who can't spell, cannot get on with people because of an inherited condition, yet who is an amazing trader, one who will make money when he grows up, despite all his handicaps.

It is true though, if we apply sound Biblical principles to our life, we should be better off than the average, as we will develop different priorities to those we had when in the world. However, the poor will never magically get rich through 'giving to get', the principle of 'kings'.

God is calling us to the understanding of the 'kingdom', that EVERYTHING WE HAVE BELONGS TO HIM, to spend His (not our) money, not on ourselves but primarily for the extension of the kingdom.

I am not saying that you must choose the financial path Kathy and I have taken. But, particularly for those of us who live in the affluent West, we need to take heed of the warning contained in the Parable of the Rich Ruler. I will leave you with the words of Jesus:

So then, any of you who does not forsake (renounce, surrender claim to, give up, say goodbye to) all that he has cannot be my disciple. (Luke 14:33 Amplified Version)

(Testimony to be continued next week)

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FROM THE WORD

THE RICH RULER

"A certain ruler asked him, “Good teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” “Why do you call me good?” Jesus answered. “No one is good—except God alone. You know the commandments: ‘Do not commit adultery, do not murder, do not steal, do not give false testimony, honor your father and mother.’” “All these I have kept since I was a boy,” he said. When Jesus heard this, he said to him, “You still lack one thing. Sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” When he heard this, he became very sad, because he was a man of great wealth. Jesus looked at him and said, “How hard it is for the rich to enter the kingdom of God! Indeed, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” Those who heard this asked, “Who then can be saved?” Jesus replied, “What is impossible with men is possible with God.” Peter said to him, “We have left all we had to follow you!” “I tell you the truth,” Jesus said to them, “no one who has left home or wife or brothers or parents or children for the sake of the kingdom of God will fail to receive many times as much in this age and, in the age to come, eternal life.”" (Luke 18:18-30)

DO NOT WORRY

"“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own." (Matthew 6:25-34)

THE COST OF BEING A DISCIPLE

"Large crowds were traveling with Jesus, and turning to them he said: “If anyone comes to me and does not hate his father and mother, his wife and children, his brothers and sisters—yes, even his own life—he cannot be my disciple. And anyone who does not carry his cross and follow me cannot be my disciple. “Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Will he not first sit down and estimate the cost to see if he has enough money to complete it? For if he lays the foundation and is not able to finish it, everyone who sees it will ridicule him, saying, ‘This fellow began to build and was not able to finish.’ “Or suppose a king is about to go to war against another king. Will he not first sit down and consider whether he is able with ten thousand men to oppose the one coming against him with twenty thousand? If he is not able, he will send a delegation while the other is still a long way off and will ask for terms of peace. In the same way, any of you who does not give up everything he has cannot be my disciple. “Salt is good, but if it loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is fit neither for the soil nor for the manure pile; it is thrown out. “He who has ears to hear, let him hear.”" (Luke 14:25-35)

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DAVID'S DOODLINGS

PROSPERITY

177. Earthly prosperity is 'just a little more'. But heavenly prosperity is learning to be content with what the Lord has given.

382. There is no absolute measure of prosperity for our perception of it relates to what we see others have. I wonder what God sees?

383. The problem with prosperity is that we all want to own God's 'cattle on a thousand hills' personally.

385. It is a sad fact that if the rich gave all they had to the poor, poverty would merely be delayed, not allayed.

811. In the Old Testament, success is measured by prosperity, in the New, by sacrifice. Many believers prefer to live in the past!

812. May I learn to rest content with my 'daily bread'.

813. There is no problem with prosperity, only our definition of it.

814. In the Old Testament, prosperity is provision for the future, in the New, sufficiency for today.

815. Worldly provision comes through people, godly provision through the Providor, for whom people are but one resource.

816. Jesus redefined prosperity from wealth for the future to provision for today.

Please feel free to quote these quotes. Acknowledgement of David Tait as the author would be appreciated. There are now over 1300 David sayings for you to view at ... PROSPERITY

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CRANWELL'S CARTOON






26 They came back to Moses and Aaron and the whole Israelite community at Kadesh in the Desert of Paran. There they reported to them and to the whole assembly and showed them the fruit of the land. 27 They gave Moses this account: “We went into the land to which you sent us, and it does flow with milk and honey! Here is its fruit. 28 But the people who live there are powerful, and the cities are fortified and very large. We even saw descendants of Anak there. 29 The Amalekites live in the Negev; the Hittites, Jebusites and Amorites live in the hill country; and the Canaanites live near the sea and along the Jordan.” 30 Then Caleb silenced the people before Moses and said, “We should go up and take possession of the land, for we can certainly do it.” 31 But the men who had gone up with him said, “We can’t attack those people; they are stronger than we are.” 32 And they spread among the Israelites a bad report about the land they had explored. They said, “The land we explored devours those living in it. All the people we saw there are of great size. 33 We saw the Nephilim there (the descendants of Anak come from the Nephilim). We seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes, and we looked the same to them.” (Numbers 13:26:33)











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TUESDAY TEACHINGS

THE POWER OF THE BLOOD

We will take a look at what the sacrifice, the blood of Jesus , has done for us.

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LAUGHING AT OURSELVES

***Blessed are those who can laugh at themselves for they shall never cease to be amused***

*** "Those who can't laugh at themselves leave the job to others." ***

728. THE MODERN KID
I had been teaching my three-year old daughter the Lord's Prayer for several evenings at bedtime, she would repeat after me the lines from the prayer.

Finally, she decided to go solo.

I listened with pride as she carefully enunciated each word, right up to the end of the prayer: "Lead us not into temptation," she prayed, "but deliver us some E-mail. Amen."

727. UMMM!
A little boy was asked to name the first man. He promptly answered, "Adam."

Then, he was asked to name the first woman. He pondered long and hard and finally suggested, "Madam?"

FREE DOWNLOAD: You can now download the book 'Laughing At Ourselves' in PDF format at LAUGHING AT OURSELVES

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FACTS FOR FUN

LAST WEEKS QUESTION: Who were the Buccaneers?

ANSWER: : Today, ‘buccaneer’ is simply another word for pirate.
Buccaneers started out as hunters on the islands we now know as Haiti
and the Dominican Republic. Their name came from the French word
‘boucan’ (meaning barbecue), as they liked to barbecue their meat on
grills. The Buccaneers were driven out by the Spanish in the sixteenth
century and to get revenge they teamed up with other persecuted
peoples, such as escaped slaves and deserters, and began attacking
Spanish ships, particularly those bringing goods to the Spanish American
colonies. By the seventeenth century, the word ‘buccaneer’ was used to
describe pirates and privateers based in the West Indies. (Do ‘buccaneer
businessmen’ have West Indian Tax Havens?)

THIS WEEK'S QUESTION: Is it true that August stole a day from
February?


Answer Next Week.

SOME FUN FACTS

531. UNSEEN
In the United States over 10,000 birds a year die from smashing into windows! (Glass Cleaner has a lot to answer for!)

532. IT'S THE SAME PLACE
Until 1796, there was a state in the United States called Franklin. Now it's known as Tennessee! (I see!)

533. PERMANENTLY IN LOVE?
A hedgehog's heart beats 300 times a minute on average. (Certainly not through strenuous exertion!)

A WORD PUZZLE FOR YOU

Make another word from this word using all the letters.

CANDLE

Answer at the end of A David Musing

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BIBLE QUESTION - WORKERS AND TOOLS

15) Which was the first occupation mentioned in the Bible?

A - Vinedresser
B - Shepherd
C - Hunter
D - Gardener

Source: www.biblequizzes.com

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IF ONLY I'D THOUGHT OF IT!

"""OTHER'S SAYINGS TO ENLIGHTEN, AMUSE, OR BEMUSE"""

"A Hatfull Of Spare Thots!"

8. Laughter is liquid sunshine.
9. Everything has beauty but not everyone sees it.
10. It's important for parents to live the same things they teach.
11. If you fill your heart with regrets of yesterday and the worries of tomorrow, you have no today to be thankful for.
12. Happy memories never wear out.. Relive them as often as you want.
13. Home is the place where we grumble the most, but are often treated the best.
14. The choice you make today will usually affect tomorrow.

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GREAT GROANS!

140. WHICH TEAM?
It's a little-known fact that William Tell and his son were avid bowlers as well as archery buffs. Unfortunately, all the league records were destroyed by a fire, and we will
never know for whom the Tells bowled.

141. ON GUARD
A very rich man kept a pair of lions to guard his property. Each of them took turns being on duty. One night, a group of midgets tried to rob him but the lion on patrol caught them and ate them.

When the police arrived, the sergeant asked skeptically, "Well, so where is this group of midgets you say broke in ?" The rich man pointed proudly to his guardians and said,
"It's all in the lion of duty."

142. THE THOUGHT
A farmer was milking a cow and a fly was buzzing around. He shooed it away with his hand and it flew into the cow's ear. He kept milking and saw the fly in the milk bucket.

The farmer thought, "Hmmm, in one ear and out the udder."

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BIBLE TRIVIA

FLIES, FLEAS AND GNATS (Also translated as 'LICE')

... were disliked strongly then as now and could carry disease. They were one of the 7 plagues that fell on Egypt in the time of Moses to persuade the Pharaoh to let the Israelites go.

Adapted from: '1001 Surprising Things You Should Know About The Bible' MacGregor & Prys

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Pastor Moves an Atheistic Hungary

by George Thomas, CBN News

BUDAPEST, HUNGARY - Pastor Sandor Nemeth knows what it's like to live under an atheistic communist regime. In the 80s, communist authorities tried repeatedly to destroy his congregation. Today he leads one of the largest and fastest growing churches in Europe. It began in a small house with a handful of people meeting in a Budapest suburb. The year was 1979. "It was extremely difficult. We were in the middle of the communist dictatorship in Hungary," Nemeth said. "Young people started coming to the house and the spirit of God was moving in a powerful way and this raised the eyebrows of the authorities."

Organized religion in Hungary was banned by the state. Believers like Nemeth were forced underground. "Christians were considered sub-human, second-class citizens. Many times the communist police tried to destroy the house. They wanted to bulldoze the place. The whole church was deemed a dead end street of history," he explained.

Thirty years later, that small underground house fellowship has transformed into the mega church called Faith Church, 50,000 members strong, with some 250 Faith Church branches meeting every Sunday across Hungary. "I never imagined this and all I can say is that this is a miracle!" Nemeth proclaimed.

On a recent Sunday morning, CBN News arrived at the church around 8:30am only to find a sea of humanity already making their way to Faith Church on the outskirts of Budapest. It was bumper-to-bumper traffic. The service officially starts at 10am. But by 9am, thousands had already lined-up inside waiting for the doors to open.

By 10:30 the main hall was packed and the band was just getting started. The balconies were full and so too the overflow area. The people came from rural villages and far-away towns to be a part of what Pastor Nemeth believes are winds of change blowing through this former communist nation. "I want Hungary and the neighboring countries to experience a true and genuine relationship with Jesus Christ," he said. "I want people to know the God of the Bible and to become born-again Christians.

Pastor Nemeth says there's not a Sunday that goes by without people walking forward to accept Christ or to receive healing. "I was on the verge of suicide, but God rescued me. I found a place of restoration here at Faith Church," a church member said.

On any given Sunday, you'll find prominent politicians, famous Hungarian artists, Messianic Jews, wealthy stock brokers and people from all other walks of life worshipping together.

In 2001, Nemeth went live on Hungarian television broadcasting the weekly Sunday service across the country. "And this is having a tremendous impact on the society. We get so many positive letters from people who say their perception of Christianity has changed since we started broadcasting the Sunday service," Pastor Nemeth said. "Communism destroyed our system of values. Families were disrupted, friendships were destroyed. The extensive network of secret spies forced people not to trust each other," Nemeth said. "What we are trying to do is to change all that. We want people to know there is freedom and forgiveness in the message of the Gospel. We want to set people free from the past."

But the past continues to trouble the church. "Well, where the work of God is present there are spies, there are always informers, those who watch from the sidelines," he said. "I cannot imagine it any other way, especially here in this region. But I don't care if they are here. I just want them not to lie but to tell the truth."

The church has been repeatedly investigated by the Hungarian internal revenue service-- but has found no financial wrongdoing. "Jesus was also under inspection so we also have to get used to such scrutiny," the pastor explained. "But nothing is going to stop us from preaching the message of Jesus Christ."

Its 4 p.m., some six hours after the service began, and Pastor Nemeth is finally bringing the service to a close. On this Sunday, he urges his members to dedicate themselves to changing the spiritual landscape of their nation with the hope that one day, the message of Jesus Christ will be heard throughout the land.

"We want to see Hungary come out of its economic and moral crisis," Nemeth said. "In the future...we want to see committed Christians take up positions of influence so that they can help their fellow man and change the society."

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DAVID'S DOWNLOAD

UP THE MOUNTAIN

An exciting yet challenging allegory of one man’s spiritual journey and his participation in the fulfillment of God’s plan. 20 pages from 'Eagles Fly High!'

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WAXING LYRICAL

This is my very first poem, written during a really hard period in my life. For we had
lost our business and I was fighting desperately, ultimately unsuccessfully, to stave off
bankruptcy. Written in the days before I became a Christian, (it took bankruptcy to do
that – some of us are slow learners!) but I was starting to look at what really are the
important things in life.

BESIDE ME

When I look back on all we have done together,
Picking the daffodils in the wind and the rain,
I am so grateful that whatever the weather,
And bearing the back that gives you pain,
You have walked beside me.

At times it has been a lot of fun,
We have laughed, cried and had the odd thrill.
But more often you have had to run,
To race, to get the job done, but still,
You have walked beside me.

And now, when my life has collapsed around my ears,
Your strength has helped me to keep my sanity,
When I have been down and experienced new fears, While I have suffered great blows
to my vanity,
You have walked beside me.

I have worked so hard all these years,
To yours and the family’s cost.
It is hard sometimes to fight back the tears,
Yet no matter how much we have lost,
You have walked beside me.

Your beauty has always drawn me to you
Like the bee to the flower of the honeysuckle tree,
To me I know you have always been true
While surely, sometimes you have wanted to be free,
You have walked beside me.

And though life at times seems bitter, twisted and curled,
Your love gives me strength to go on fighting.
I am just the luckiest man in all the world,
To have your name next to mine in writing.
You have walked beside me.

And now as I have to rebuild my life’
To meet new challenges, to reach new goals.
How blessed I am to have you as my wife,
To know that however the countryside rolls,
You will walk beside me.

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A DAVID MUSING

On Saturday I was meant to finalise the lease for a building in Hastings, before presenting the proposition to our Trustees.

This has been the result of a lot of work and 'ups and downs' for the prospective landlord is difficult to tie down.

However, Saturday came and went. Nothing happened. Maybe a delay, maybe back to the drawing board. I don't know.

But what I do know is that I am at peace, for I know that the Lord has my best interests at heart.

I did not pray to receive the building, but simply, put the whole matter in His hand that His will might be done. I will let Him do the worrying! For I know He will organise what is best for me.

Maybe you are facing a challenge in your life today that you are unable to cope with. How about you too handing it over to God? The load off your mind will be great. And you may well be surprised with the result! For His ways are not our ways - but infinitely superior.

Until next week...

MAY GOD BLESS YOU AND YOU BLESS GOD.

His servant and yours

David Tait

Today's 'Word Puzzle' Answer: LANCED

TODAY'S 'BIBLE QUESTION': D - Gardener (Gen. 2:15)

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ABOUT US

WALKING WITH JESUS MINISTRIES is a non-profit, non-denominational, Bible based ministry located in Hastings, New Zealand. A ministry dedicated to developing discipleship, fostering unity amongst God’s people to achieve the Great Commission, and in doing so, preparing for Christ’s return. It is securely based upon the foundational principles of the Apostles Creed while recognising the wide and rich diversity of beliefs amongst Christians in other areas. In accordance with the Lord’s direction, materials produced by the ministry are available, free of charge, to genuine enquirers upon request. The ministry is solely funded by donations, as the Lord provides. A list of materials available (plus some fun!) is obtainable and freely downloadable from our website
wwj.org.nz or by contacting us as follows.

Walking With Jesus Ministries
290 Flaxmere Avenue
Flaxmere
Hastings
New Zealand

Phone: (06) 8799 911 International (+64) 6 8799 911
Email: enquiries@wwj.org.nz
Web: wwj.org.nz

Our role is to bless and encourage those in ministry while promoting co-operation and unity of direction amongst the body of Christ, as emphasised 3 times by Jesus in His longest prayer, immediately prior to His arrest and crucifixion. "… so that they may be one as we are one." (John 17:12, 21, 23-4) Our website is currently being developed to encourage your participation one with another, to share resources, and to enable you to promote events and items of interest to the body as a whole – and have a smile while doing it!

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