The message on the Parable of the Sower has brought light into my soul that I have to prepare my ground for the seeds to germinate, grow and bring forth fruit. Planting seeds on a hard ground will never bring harvest. It is a waste of time. I am responsible for the preparation of my heart. I must expose my heart to the word of God and avail myself before the presence of God.
The word of God is the seed, and every seed must be planted on a prepared ground, that has been broken. The stones must be removed, the ground fertilized and moist. The ground is my heart. My heart has to be touched and revived. Revival is breaking the fallow ground of my heart and preparing me to receive the seed which is the word of God. The word is a hammer which breaks the ground. It is the fire that burns every chaff. It is the mirror which exposes me to myself so that I can make adjustments. It is a two edged sword which chops off every weed and thorn that may try to choke and stop the plant from growing.
The fruit does not come without hard work. I have realized that I have to work out my own salvation with fear and trembling in order to reap a thirty, sixty or hundred fold harvest. I must be quick to obey and repent when God convicts me of issues that are stopping my progress. I must protect my heart from offences and sin. I must be a doer of the word of God and obey God in every area of my life. I must purpose in my heart to live right, humble myself, submit to the word of God and obey the Holy Spirit at all times. The purity of God’s word proclaimed from a pure heart will bring forth a bountiful harvest.
I thought I was hungry for God before but then the Lord began to break my heart for souls and ministry and my hunger to see destiny deepened. An unexplainable yearning to see the call of God fulfilled has captivated my heart and my desire to see the harvest come in has grown. I asked the Lord to give me guidance and direction to see the vision that he has placed on the inside of me come to pass. Revival got a hold of me and I just began to fall more and more in love with Jesus and develop a compassion for people like I never had before. I then made a decision that I was just going to keep seeking God and stay faithful to work He has planned for me. A determination to stay focused and pick up my cross daily came over me and I was filled with power from on high, special anointing of faith to keep pressing forward and not grow tired or weary. It was as though the spirit began to quicken my body to press through and my mind was clear from all the distractions that this world brings. I am reminded by the Holy Spirit that I cannot miss God’s plan for my life while I am faithful and my heart is perfect toward Him.
It has been a week and two days being in the children department. I have seen young children open and hungry for the things of God. It’s just wonderful to see young children loving the Lord with all their heart, mind and soul. I’m doing what the Lord wants me to do. The Bible says if ye be willing and obedient ye shall eat the good of the land. I look forward continuing and doing the Lord’s ways.
I grew up in a parsonage as a preachers kid with everyone thinking that I was perfect. In reality I was an absolute mess spiritually, I was up to my eyeballs in sin having no real working knowledge of the Word of God. I of course knew things like John 3:16 and the 23 Psalm, but other than that I didn’t really know much scripture and that makes it hard to stand against the enemy. Imagine trying to fight a war completely weaponless, you wouldn’t live long, but when you get the word inside you, it is like you are packin’ an m-16, a sniper rifle, and a rocket launcher you are ready for anything the enemy will throw at you. Now as soon as I came to the River I was submerged in the Scriptures.
Not only that, but I was also placed into situations of practical application of the very things that I was learning, from soul winning and outreaches on the street to the application of these spiritual principles in my personal walk with God in things such as trusting the Lord for my finances, health issues, housing, food, general wellbeing.
The Word says “go ye into all the world and preach the Gospel to all creatures” as far as the word says it tells us that if we will be about God’s business then He will be about ours. As I did this God began to work on my heart and I began to die out to my past, to the sin that had controlled my life and kept me in bondage for so long. As I grew closer to God through the Scripture and prayer the things that had held me back have been falling off one by one. The Bible is our power supply and instruction manual in this life. I have been blessed and I pray that you will be too!
How has my life changed in the past few weeks since coming to RBI, in 300 words? When I first heard the assignment I figured it would be easy. That turned out to be wrong. The problem with the question is that as I reflected on the past three weeks I didn’t feel anything extraordinary had taken place. Actually, after being here for the last three weeks I began to doubt whether or not I was right for RBI. I sat in the church watching people fall under the power of the Holy Ghost, yet I felt nothing. Despite prayer and hands from the Pastor, I lacked the “fire” that so many others seemed to automatically have.
My journey to RBI started on a hospital bed after a half month battle with a dangerous infection. I was awaken from a medicated sleep to find my TV on channel 2. Two things were unusual about my awakening. One, it was 1:30 A.M. when my monitor’s alarm woke me. However, there was no reason for my monitor to go off. Second and more importantly, I fell asleep praying, asking God to lead me to a place where I could grow.
Without going into my complete testimony, my whole journey to this point has been amazing but the past few weeks have been challenging. It hasn’t been very long but I feel like I’ve lost something again and when I see everyone at RBI so anointed I began to wonder if I had sinned and lost my way. It wasn’t till tonight that I remembered that faith is a beautiful thing. The hardest thing about faith is that when we want the answers the quickest it seems to be the time that God is expecting us to press in and believe.
I realized that in the last few weeks that I have gone under construction. Sometimes when you’re building the foundation you don’t know how awesome the structure is going to look when it’s done; only that it’s going to be awesome. If I had to summarize what I’ve experienced in the last few weeks then it would be, that during construction sometimes a moment of pause helps you realize that God is working all of the time….
When we were asked to write about what God has been doing in us since we got here for school, I have to say I was a bit at a loss. Not because God hasn’t been doing things in me, they just haven’t become concrete yet. I know for sure that this season is a season of demarcation in my life. From when God first called me out of California and the apathetic, backslidden life I had allowed myself to degenerate into, to this day, I can, in fact, see the fruit of this decision. Tonight Pastor Eric was giving an alter call and a sentence he spoke summed up my life in California exactly.
Drinking, smoking pot, living in sensuality, and yet yearning constantly for God to change me. I knew all of those things were empty and futile, but I felt alone, had no community, no body of believers or even friends to spur me on to what was right. At every turn people were encouraging me down that road of self fulfillment, of instant gratification. Thanks be to God that He spoke clearly enough for me to hear Him in the state I was in to FLEE California. There were many acts of supernatural provision made by Him just to get me here. I had no idea, at all, what was in store for me. I had never even heard of Pastor Rodney Howard Brown or any of this ministry before my mom started watching in the early spring.
I saw the transformation in her life, and she planted the seed in my head to come here. From the first service I have heard confirmed words that He spoke to me, while I was yet a far off, words like that by the end of summer I won’t recognize myself, and that all of these trials are just preparation for some future circumstance when I’ll need to look back and see the wondrous things He has done and gotten me through, and that I need to start asking for the big things of God and not begging for survival from the Creator of the universe.
The all-consuming fire of the Holy Spirit is burning away the fear and trepidation I have about speaking in front of people, about being seen by people, about being myself. As for my life-long battle with lack, He told me last Thursday that lack is no more in my life! I believe Him not only for my needs for right now, but for His big, big plans for me! In each case where my flesh rises up and I continue in obedience in spite of it, like my first time soul winning or working on the phones, He blesses me abundantly right after in my spirit. There are layers and layers of freedom being unwrapped as I continue to cry out to Him.
Even in the pain of crucifying my flesh daily there is new oil, new wine, new joy of the Lord to sustain me! I have no where to run away to. There is nothing else. I told Him the first week of revival that if He didn’t give me boldness, if He didn’t BURN inside of me, then I might as well die. It sounds dramatic, but I don’t want anything else, and if I don’t really get this right now, I’m finished. I’m so marked by this school, even just so far as this is the beginning, that I will never be able to settle for mediocre or complacent again, in Jesus name…..
Since I have been here at Bible College the Lord has been providing for me financially and a place to live. I have not stretched my faith in such a way like I have since I came down to Bible College. God has healed my broken heart and taken away grief from losing my Mother last year.
God has rekindled the flame that once had burned bright but through hardships in life went very dim. Growing up in church I knew God but I ran from my calling and God had his hand on my life in a powerful way. When Pastor Rodney came to my Grandfather’s church I was a young girl and when he laid his hands on me I never experienced the Holy Ghost like I did that night.
When I was 16 I lived in Tampa with my Father and I remember sitting in the service seeing people with joy and thinking that it was crazy….little did I know I was going to get it a short time after, it was like the scripture talking about a strong and mighty wind and before I knew it I was on the floor laughing uncontrollably……that lasted from 10:30 pm until 2:00 am!!!! I had never experienced the joy until that night. I had got a touch from God but I didn’t have a change that needed to happen.
Now being back and also going to Bible College has changed my life completely; I have been getting smacked with the fire from crying uncontrollably to laughing uncontrollably!! I have been out soul winning leading people to the Lord. I have a Holy boldness like never before and I love it. I thank God for using Pastor Rodney and Pastor Adonica to be lead by the Spirit…..Amber S.
The layers are being peeled off one at a time! It is quite painful at times. The Lord is showing me a picture of myself, my heart, and is going deep within and delivering and restoring me. He is revealing what must go and be replaced with more of Him. The transition from Center Island to being here at RBI has been an act of amazing grace. My Lord has heard my cry for more, for more of Him!!!
But now, I have come, yes I have come to a place of refuge and of strength, and that strength is being instilled in me by the Holy Spirit. I am receiving and I grow stronger each and every day and with the continual filling and boldness of the Holy Ghost standing up within me. I am flying with His anointing to save the lost! I thank God that I am well fed here at RBI to overflowing so that I may pour out of what has been given to me to others. I consider it an honor to be able to work and be trained in the ministries here at “The River Church”. Thank you so very much for the generous gifts you have given me to come to school at RBI…..Cheryl R.
Isaiah chapter 49 and I’ll read verses 14 and 15. Isaiah is in the Old Testament. Isaiah chapter 49 verses 14 and 15.
I am totally different. I cannot fully describe in detail the changes that have taken place, but in one simple phrase, “I feel brand new.”
The best way that I can describe what has happened over the last three weeks is that I have been marinating in the Word and the anointing. Like a good marinade, the combination is breaking me down to the person God had in mind. So many things have bubbled up to the surface. My flesh has been crucified and then burnt with the fire. The fire of God is going deeper, down to the inner core, touching the “small” things that must change.
Since I have been here, I now understand that a pure heart is the starting point. When I first arrived, the fire made my heart tender again. God is renewing my mind to not care about the temporal things, but to focus on eternity. I can feel the weights and sin falling off. Now, I not only know that I am free based on the Word, but I feel free. Freedom lives on the inside.
The first time I noticed the difference was in praise and worship. I could jump, wave my hands, and shout without holding back. I felt lighter. I know it’s not all about feelings, but I am different. I have been made free. I have a new song! I am freer to do what God has called me to do. My thoughts are changing; the song in my heart is sweeter; life is sweeter. My old life is gone! It’s like I’ve started over and this is how I have always lived. I am in the right place at the right time, in the perfect will of God, and there is no other place I would rather be…Danielle W.
talking about the images in our minds, of our eyes, and we’re going to focus on this deep concept called “mother love”.
I was truly shocked when I was given the scholarship to RBI, when we were told that we would be tested I was not ready for the level that I was to be test, I was test financially from day one.
However I have learned to trust the LORD more.
My experience at RBI has thus far been a positive one, I had only led one person to the Lord prior to coming to RBI, however sense being here I have had the pleasure of leading at least one each week to the LORD.
The Lord did tell me that the money I am needing for fuel will be there as I need it.
And he also said he will not let me fail.
Even thou I am just truly beginning in the ministry even thou I was called in 1993, it has been far easier than I had anticipated to lead someone to the LORD.
I have been lifted up far more than I had anticipated before coming to RBI.
This is a good thing because I had not had any ministers really talk loving and plain to me as I have in the short time I have been here.
Although I have not received a touch like some one else may have from the holy spirit, and I am not comparing myself with anyone else, I do know that the power will be there when he and the power is needed.
If the LORD has touched me in any other way it will take time to know in what way I have been touched.
I will simply have to take it one day at a time to find out what more he has for me.
I know what he has promised just not the timing.
Rodney Howard Browne: I’m going “Oh no!” and I’m about in tears, so I’m walking and I happen to sit down by my mom on the front row and my mom leaned over to me and she said something that only a mother could say.