Recently my friend, Pastor Ryan Murphy (Rock of Roseville - Roseville, CA), asked me what I see God doing in our moment of global crisis. Unfortunately our Instagram Live was disrupted (boo, Instagram!), but we were able to move our chat to Zoom and pressed record. Please read/watch with an open heart to what God might be saying to you.
You can find a text summary of my response as well as the video below.
The prophetic community has mixed reviews when it comes to interpreting our present crisis. The spectrum ranges from:
This epidemic is from the evil one.
This epidemic has been allowed by God.
This epidemic has been sent by God.
The truth is, each of these varying perspectives are undergirded by important theological premises that divide much of the prophetic community today. Thankfully, God Himself is not in conflict about this crisis. He is working redemptively in the midst of it—this is something all of us across the theological spectrum agree on.
As I pray into our present crisis I make it my aim to look for what the Father is doing in the midst of it; He is indeed working. He is working in a redemptive way for His glory and the highest good of His creation.
I see (5) ways God is working redemptively in the Church (particularly the Church of America) in this current shaking.
Surely these are not the only redemptive works God is doing; they simply represent the things bubbling up within me, from my limited vantage point. Note: this perspective is limited to what God is doing in the North American Church
1. He is teaching us true rest/sabbath.
At the early part of this year I was meeting with a group of leaders. We gathered to share our sense of what God was saying to us about 2020. In that meeting I shared that I felt unusually tired for sometime. I sensed that my fatigue was indicative of the hurried pace of our culture. As well, I shared that I believed the Lord was inviting the Church to draw near to Him to learn rest and develop fresh life rhythms for the days ahead. The coming harvest carries with it more work than any of us understand; and God desires laborers who can work from a true place of rest and abiding in Him. We simply cannot continue at the pace of our hurried and anxiety-ridden culture. This shut down is a bit of respite; and an opportunity for us to learn true rest in Christ in advance of what’s coming!
2. He is giving us a gift of weakness.
We (Americans) live in the most prosperous nation of human history. Our blessings have been great but they have also prohibited us from experiencing weakness—which is the very place God chooses to manifest His supernatural power. As result, our experience of God’s power is dismal compared to that which we long for and that which we read of in the New Testament. The sense of helplessness that the current crisis presents is an opportunity for us to touch weakness and recover a sense of authentic, New Testament Christianity. I believe this will purify our faith and will lead to both a sifting as well as multiplication of true disciples.
3. He is advancing the cause of discipleship.
Many disciples will rise with a fresh vision for the mandate of making new disciples in the days ahead. Almost an entire generation of workers are now at home, having been labelled “non-essential”. I sense many are beginning to think more critically about their lives, the things they are living for and investing their energies into. I believe this moment will lead many to rise with a fresh zeal to invest in the things that truly matter—an eternal kingdom which cannot be shaken!
4. He is requiring the Church to use the "Roman roads" of our day (media).
The Apostle Paul would have never made the level of impact he did were he not born into the first century Roman Empire. Paul was born into a historic moment where the ruling empire had developed infrastructure (aqueducts and roads) that connected the known world in an unprecedented way. He and other apostles carried the gospel to far away lands traveling on these roads. Similarly, local churches and ministries have been forced to use media tools to continue to connect with their people and preach the gospel in lieu of in-person gatherings. God’s grace is being released with ingenuity, creativity and authority for these ministries to expand their impact and to raise the ceiling for how the Church relates to society via media.
5. He is providing us with an opportunity to mature the prophetic mantle on the Church.
As Dr. Michael Brown recently noted, we (those of us in the charismatic movement) will be able to test some of the recent widespread predictive prophecies made about COVID-19, the economy, etc. I believe that if we are able to walk this out in humility, we will see God’s prophetic grace increase on the Church in the days ahead as a result.
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Adam Narciso is the visionary and pioneer of Catalyst Ministries, a training and global outreach mission for the next generation. Since 2009 Adam has trained and mobilized over 40 international evangelism teams and has equipped thousands in the areas of identity, hearing God and evangelism via seminars around the world. Adam has preached the gospel in city campaigns, universities, high schools and bamboo huts in remote villages, all with supernatural effect. Communicating with humor and fresh biblical insight, Adam is a unique prophetic evangelist who equips everyday Jesus-followers to live authentic, New Testament Christianity, discovering their highest joy in the Great Commandment and their unique assignment in the Great Commission.