Monthly Archives: November 2012

Trevor Noah Comedy Genius

South African comedian Trevor Noah, sharing some of his thoughts…

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A talk I gave on Friday night

Walking in Your Destiny:
Activating the Vision and Enjoying the Journey

Find whatever it is that you’re most passionate about – what is it? Write it down. Then put everything you have into pursuing that, and seeing your goals come to pass. ALL your heart. Never waver, continually listen to God’s voice. Luke 1:53 – he has filled the hungry with good things, but the rich/self satisfied/indifferent he has sent empty away.

The inevitable opposition to this will be: ‘that’s such a privileged way of thinking – what about those who have to be dustbin men for their whole lives, just to provide for their families. It’s alright for you, you have loads of safety nets.’
The point is, the way friends in the world would love to live, is to follow their true desires – but fear/convention holds them back.
Besides – we are privileged. We are children of the King. Heirs to an inheritance that will never fade. Add to this the fact that the world is CRYING OUT for us to be all who we were created to be:

Romans 8:18-19
Our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.
The creation waits in eager expectation for the sons of God to be revealed.”

So – people are desperate to see that another way of doing life is possible. THAT is our responsibility when we work out our personal destiny.
Follow your favour – look for the ‘Yes and Amen’ of heaven that you attract as you walk in obedience. And then remember that favour is never to be kept as yours – it’s always to impart and pass on to benefit others.

Such a remarkable way for a president to live – smashing status quo, consumerism, myths of power etc etc. Yet – what is he criticized for? Not growing the economy as militantly as his opponent, and not acting the way people usually expect presidents to act. Ie, he’s criticized for two of his strengths. He’s criticized for walking in his anointing. That is to be expected.

The dunamis power that is activated ‘AS’ people of God act in obedience:

FEAR/COURAGE (Joshua 3:15-16)
Faith = risk = stepping into the flooding Jordan River, in obedience to God’s command. There is a miracle waiting to happen, just the other side of intense fear!

DEAD DREAMS BECOMING PROPHETIC VISION (Ezekiel 37:1-7)
This relates to the releasing of new dreams – prophesying life into dry bones. Do you see bones or army? If all you see is bones, ask for prophetic vision.

APOSTOLIC LIFESTYLE (Matt 10:7-8)
Jesus told the disciples that signs and wonders would happen ‘as you go’. Ie, if you don’t ‘go’, you wont see. This is not an optional add-on, as church often suggests. The Apostolic lifestyle – (coming from the Greek meaning ‘sent out ones’) is for all followers of Jesus, because (Luke 6:13) he designated all the disciples to be apostles too.

UNDOING FLAWED SYSTEMS (Mark 2:4-5)
The story of Jesus healing the paralysed man. He is lowered down by his mates, to Jesus’ feet, through a hole in the roof. Sometimes we cannot remain in the system: we have to take the roof off, to bring forth the sozo/breakthrough/heaven on earth encounter that a situation needs. There are some huge political implications for this.

Let’s think about a ‘system’ of behaviour in our times: the exodus of populations to urban areas, increasing city number and size. It follows that cities exert disproportionate influence in shaping 21st Century culture. Add to that the pressing level of urban poverty – 1 billion people (1/3 of urban residents) live in slums.

MORE THAN EVER, SEEKING THE WELFARE OF CITIES MEANS BEING PREPARED TO SEEK THE WELFARE OF THE POOR.

“2/3 of world population lives in poverty, or hover close to it. Yet only 6 percent of Christians live amongst them and become them. If the good news were a marketable product like Coke or Pepsi, a 6 percent reach to two-thirds of the world means someone in marketing would be fired.”
(John B Hayes: ‘Submerge’)

I felt I couldn’t live in the ‘system’ without trying to take the roof off and seek Jesus’ healing from the results of a fallen world. I moved into Manenberg, a marginalized community on the edge of Cape Town. It was a beautiful experience. Yet – like anything God calls us to do – it came with a lot of opposition and personal cost. The naïve manner in which I moved in (largely isolated), only added to the intensity. Here’s a diary entry from July 2010.

5.7.10
“A desperately hard day. I am beginning to totally lose hope, and today may have been the day I did lose hope in the vision that I believe God has given me for seeing guys come out of gangs and off drugs. I’m not sure how much more I can take. So far the list of stuff stolen from the house amounts to:
Ipod, digital camera, basin, clothes vouchers, bolt cutters, toaster, hammer, saw, copper wiring and water pipes, electric drill, beef mince from freezer, toilet duck and half tube of toothpaste. (!)
Add to that the killing of 3 gang members on Friday, meaning shootings on most days recently, and armoured cars from the army base patrolling the streets at night – there was even a shooting down my street, and I was mugged by three guys with a gun, as I got out of the car a couple of weeks ago.
Not a pretty picture. I’m feeling worn out and cynical. I’m meant to be trying to think about God’s strength in my weakness (for a talk I’d been asked to do in UK) – and maybe this is it – that I’m sitting writing this on my bed, not scared and not crying my eyes out because I believe that ‘everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted.’ [2Tim3:12 – do we have a theology of suffering?]
And that’s it – if we really grasp the fact that opposition will always come, but ultimately God works for the good of those who love him – if we really get that, we are basically invincible to anything satan can throw at us, because God will redeem everything.
Physical opposition always starts as spiritual opposition. Which means satan’s not happy. Which means we’re doing something right, which means God is with us. Which means weakness is just fine because it leaves a whole lot more scope for HIM to do what WE never could.”

A quote from Growing In The Supernatural manual:
“The more influential your call, the more tribulation and adversity you will have to weather, because without tribulation you can’t build character and without character the weight of your call will destroy both you and others. Which is why we must rejoice in tribulation.“ (Romans 5:3-5, James 1:2-4)

‘We are closest to the most powerful manifestions of God when we are in the most difficult circumstances, those in which it seems there is no way out.’
Dr. Ana Mendez-Ferrell

It was out of this hopeless-seeming situation that I cried out to God for a wife – and the very day I wrote down my cry in my diary, 17th September 2010, I met Sarah who is now my wife. “The eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and his ears are attentive to their cry.”

WRITE EVERYTHING DOWN – YOUR LONGINGS, AND HOW GOD ANSWERS. It just maximizes the excitement when you realize that something you forgot you asked for, comes into being!

Delays: all about hunger, character and prayer. (From GIS Manual)
The story of how our project is pursuing God’s call to open a Transformational Community House for ‘High Risk Youth’ in Manenberg is one of hunger, character and prayer:

Dec 2009 – Realised we ‘need it’.
April 2011 – Got the cash for it (having prayed for 15 months).

Cue four different houses, all of which we were convinced were going to be ‘the one’.
First one was a rip off being sold by a crook.
Second one, landlady went back on her word the day before signing contract.
Third one, too small.
Fourth one – not sure yet.
But then, in September, we received money to open a bakery – part of the original vision in 2009! And this year Fusion is becoming an independent NPO which will best suit the running of the project, which will now include a house, a 24/7 Prayer Room and a bakery all in one.

What’s my point? Well, like most things, Kris Vallotton and Walt Disney say it best:

‘God takes a long time to act suddenly. Between the time that God gives us a promise and the time that we actually see the fulfilment of that promise there is often times a process, and that process is actually what we need to come into the promise.’ (Kris Vallotton)

‘All the adversity I’ve had in my life, all my troubles and obstacles, have strengthened me…You may not realize it when it happens, but a kick in the teeth may be the best thing in the world for you.’ (Walt Disney)

(Quotes from GIS Manual)

Hunger
Transformational influence is reserved for the hungry. Hunger moves you from convenience to passion. Hunger releases a new capacity for dreaming.

Character
‘The more influential your call, the more tribulation and adversity you will have to weather. Because without tribulation you can’t build character and without character the weight of your call will destroy both you and others. Which is why we must rejoice in tribulation.‘ (GIS. Ref: Joseph, Moses, David, Paul)
Private breakthroughs precede public ministry and influence.
“Every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit.” John 15:2

Prayer
Testimony and Thanksgiving that becomes a culture of thanks.
DNA Prayer – who has God made you to be? WHO you are is the blueprint for WHAT He has for you.

“If you study the spiritual history of any nation or tribe you will find that the initial work of breakthrough is always accomplished on our knees….. ALWAYS! Any situation where the kingdom of God is advancing can be traced back to a faithful group of heroes who faced impossibilities, prayed and prevailed. The victory is first won in the heavenlies before it is expressed on earth and we first glimpse the floods of God’s blessing in the small clouds of promise.” (Ian Nicholson, 24-7 Prayer)

Disaffected

A good mate of mine, Chris MacDonald – actor, director, cricketer – Directed, produced, starred in… this short film.
It kind of follows on quite well from my first post, asking how does one live well in a big city, surrounded by the pull of the pace of life and seduction of counterfeit noise, midst the battle for significance and identity.
Is it a realistic framing of the questions many people secretly have, or is it just plain depressing… whatdya think?