YWAM & Loren Cunningham:

YWAM & Loren Cunningham:
Training Young People to Take the Gospel to the World

By Dave Earley

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God gave a young man a big vision.   Loren Cunningham saw waves of young people being sent from the nations to the nations, ultimately covering every continent with the gospel. From that moment, he has lived a life of bold faith and radical obedience to fulfill the will of God. In 1960 Loren and his wife,  Darlene,  launched YWAM (Youth with a Mission), a unique missions agency based on exposing young people to global evangelism , discipling them in Live/Learn Environments,  and taking them to share the Gospel to the least reached.

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Since then, YWAM has grown to become one of the largest mission agencies in the world with over 20,000 full-time missionaries, serving on 1,500 bases in 191 countries. Over 5 million people have now experienced missionary training and participated in outreach efforts with YWAM.

In 1974, Cunningham followed the Lord’s direction to start a mission base and training site at Kona, on the Big Island of Hawaii. The vision was to create a launching pad for ministry into Asia and create a place where young people from all over the world can be trained for missions.

The base at Kona now houses seventeen ministries including:  aquaponics, movie-making, sustainable living projects, the Uniscript Bible translation project, global mapping that measures the spiritual needs of every person on earth, the arts, Crossfit sports ministry, YWAM Ships, and a prayer room.

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The Kona training site also has been developed as University of the Nations. Every quarter, well over a thousand students are studying in ten to twenty schools. Each student spends three months studying and serving at the base and two more months doing outreach at mission bases throughout the world.

In February, I had the opportunity to sit down with Loren Cunningham. The seventy-eight year old spoke with us for over two hours as he shared his passion to get the Bible in every home, every hand, and every heart on the planet. Along with written copies of the Word, he was very excited about how they were creating an audio version of the Scriptures for the illiterate or for those whose languages are not yet in written form.

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Loren had just returned from a trip on which he met major Christian leaders, including the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Pope, seeking their blessing to give Bibles to the adherents of their groups.  (He showed me a selfie of himself talking with the Pope at the Vatican). The goal is to have the Bible available to every person on the planet in their language by 2020.

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Loren has modelled a heart that listens to God’s voice and a life that quickly and completely obeys. As a result, he is seeing his original vision fulfilled. Young people are rising up from all over the world to be trained to go back into the world, especially the 10/40 window, taking the Gospel.

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PUSH: PRAY UNTIL SOMETHING HAPPENS

PUSH: PRAY UNTIL SOMETHING HAPPENS

By Dave Earley

Two months ago, we challenged our congregation to PUSH: Pray Until Something Happens. The components of PUSH consist of eight action steps discussed over the eight weeks.

1.     List seven specific prayer requests that you believe the Father wants to give you (Luke 11:1-10).

2.     Persistently intercede for family members including children, siblings, and parents (Matthew 15:22-28).

3.     Actively believe the power of prayer to save cities (Genesis 18:2-32), nations (Psalms 106:23), and the lost.

4.     Deal with the issues that often cause our prayers to go unanswered – selfishness (James 4:3); the sovereign mystery of God (Is. 55:8-9); unbelief (Mark 11:20-24; Matt. 17:18-21; Romans 10:17); a lack of forgiveness (Matthew 6:14-15; Mark 11:24-25); and unresolved sin (Isaiah 59:1-2; Psalm 66:18; John 9:31; Proverbs 28:9;Isaiah 1:15;  1 John 3:21-22).

5.     Understand the role of spiritual warfare to hinder our prayers (Daniel 10:12-13) and fight back with fasting (Daniel 10:2-3).

6.     Don’t be afraid to ask God for personal blessing and expanded spheres of ministry influence (1 Chron. 4:10; Gen. 32:26).

7.     Practice acknowledging sin as an element in revival (1 John 1:9; Prov. 28:13; James 5:16).

8.     Initiate the power of praise before the answer comes (2 Chronicles 20:20-24).

On the last Sunday of PUSH, we gave our people a chance to come to the mic and share a one minute testimony of how God had answered. It was powerful! People got jobs. Lost souls were saved. Relationships were reconciled and prodigal family members returned home. Plus, God even did the unexpected including:

·       Steve shared how God had lead him to start an after school Bible Club in Eldorado High School where he teaches.  They not only obtained the principal’s permission, but they had a room full of kids tearfully seeking God.

·       After Steve, Randy came and told how he did not know that Steve even taught at Eldorado, let alone had started a Bible Club. Yet, on Randy’s PUSH list was the request that God do something at his old high school … Eldorado! Steve’s testimony of God moving at that school showed him that even though he did not realize it, God was already answering his prayer!

·       Kelly told how God had answered in the life of her husband and her son. Beyond that, God had used her to see a homeless man healed during the Sunday morning homeless feed!

·       11 year-old Cierra told how she had asked God to save 30 people during outreach week. God topped that, as 35 were saved!

·       Audrey rejoiced that the Lord had answered all seven of her requests! He freed her of years of fear and bitterness. Moreover, in addition to God giving her $6,000 for her medical bills, he also worked in the lives of each of her adult children. One came home and told her he wanted to give up using drugs and turn his life around. An estranged daughter moved back to Vegas to be near Audrey. Another got his work schedule changed so he could bring his family to church. Then, out of the blue, another estranged daughter knocked on Audrey’s door to see her!

·       Graham and Rachel were asking God for $4,400 for an upcoming mission trip. As they prayed, they felt led to ask for $300 extra. When they tallied up the money that had come in, it totaled … $4,700!

·       Scott shared how he had been praying for God to move in the lives of the middle school students to whom he ministers. Eleven were saved in one night!

·       Chris had not been used of the Lord to see anyone saved in quite a while. During PUSH, he led five people to Jesus!

·       Joe needed a job and financial help. During the last week of PUSH, God gave him both!

·       Mickael also needed a full-time job.  She asked specifically for a fulltime job with a specific amount of pay and benefits provided for free. She got all three!

·       Shane had been asking God to get paid for playing music. During PUSH, he got a paid to play a show and invited back to play regularly!

·       Mike asked for customers for the new business he had started or for a full-time job to provide for his family. He got both…the very first week of PUSH!

·       Buford shared how he never had enough money to last a whole month. At the end of every month, he ended up asking family members and others to bail him out. God gave him a paid, part-time ministry job working at our Outreach Center. Last month, for the first time in recent history, he barely had more than enough at the end of the month. He was thrilled!

YEAH GOD!!!

May reading these testimonies encourage you to make your own list of seven and

PUSH: Pray Until Something Happens!

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MULTIPLY CHURCHES

MULTIPLY CHURCHES!

By Dave Earley

Jesus commanded His disciples to make disciples who make disciples (Matthew 28:18-20). They obeyed that command by starting a church (Acts 2:41-47). Therefore, as we trace the steps of the first Christ followers, we too must make disciples who start churches.

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Grace city church planting center

Recently, Grace City Church was approved as the Southwest Regional Center of the Liberty Church Planting Network. As such, we are the conduit for high quality assessment, training, coaching and funding for church pioneers. As a movement committed to multiplication, we are excited to be able to see God using this partnership to help us train disciples who start new churches and multiply the gospel. We call this new aspect of our School of Ministry the CPX (the Church Planting Experience).

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Liberty Church Planting Network (LCPN) is a network of pastors and churches who partner together to start new churches in the United States and around the world. LCPN’s passion is “Changing the world by planting churches.” LCPN has been used of God to plant 1000 new churches in the US since 1980. In the last three years, LCPN has help plant over 100 churches in the US and over 1000 internationally.

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LAUNCH TRAINING

Grace City and LCPN have also recently linked with the Launch Group to provide effective assessment, training, and coaching for church planters. Recently, Dr. Tom Swanner (Coordinator of our Grace City Bible Experience), Richard Thompson (Director of our School of Ministry) and myself completed several days of intensive training with Launch’s CLO, Mac Lake. We are now certified to train church planters using the Launch Training System.

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Launch was founded by Brian Bloye of Westridge Church (westridge.com). Their excellent training system was developed by Mac Lake. The Launch Training system is based on personal interaction using ten adult training techniques to guide potential planters through twelve essential leadership competencies. These include:

  1. Identify & confirm a passionate sense of calling
  2. Master the discipline of leading yourself
  3. Identify the needs of your community & develop an intentional strategy to meet them
  4. Cast a clear and compelling vision for your church plant
  5. Lead from a bold faith that takes prayerful risks
  6. Evaluate your values & integrate them into the DNA of your church
  7. Effectively raise & manage money
  8. Be intentional about discipleship & leadership development
  9. Develop measurable systems & structures to fulfill your vision
  10. Identify key leaders to execute the vision
  11. Think strategically & execute for results
  12. Persevere through difficulty in order to get to the next level

The six month training process is built around small cohorts of 2-5 planters being trained through one-to-one coaching relationships and peer-to-peer interaction. The planters work through six books and develop a series of strategic projects.

Join the Movement!

Our mission is to be a multiplying, revivalistic, missional family in the city for the world.

If you are a potential church planter and are interested in what it would look like to be trained through Grace City, please get in touch with us. We will guide you through your next steps. Our next CPX training cohort is being formed now! Email Dr. Tom Swanner at swanneriv@gmail.com.

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Love Vegas Week

Love Vegas Week
Dave Earley

Every spring, we do something crazy at Grace City
. Ok, so yes we do crazy things all year long, but in the spring we do a ridiculous week of outreach with students from Liberty University and some of our friends from YWAM. This year, Richard Thompson and Graham Marshall led the charge in our best outreach week yet.

Our Love Vegas week began on Monday with an hour and a half of prayer and worship, then ministry at our Flamingo Outreach Center, then on to passing out fliers for a Block Party in zip code 89119. That night, many team members also hit the Strip for street evangelism.

Tuesday:  We started the day with more prayer and worship, then outreach at UNLV and Schofield Middle School. That night our middle school group had a special event and nearly a dozen kids made decisions for Jesus!

Wednesday:  The day began with prayer and worship, followed by more outreach at UNLV. A group called the Circuit Riders from Pasadena, CA joined us for an evangelistic concert in the amphitheater at UNLV.

Wednesday evening:   The local YWAM base joined us as we held a huge (350 people) park party at Molasky Park. Liberty Students shared their testimonies and clearly presented the Gospel. Several more made decisions for Christ.

Thursday:  We enjoyed more prayer, testimonies, and worship. Then more outreach at UNLV as students took seriously their assignment to simply love the campus. Students at UNLV made decisions for Christ every time our team set foot on campus. Afterwards, there was an outreach at Paradise Elementary through our Good News Club.

Friday
:  The Liberty students debriefed. Many shared that this easily had been one of the most powerful and significant weeks of their lives. Kudos to the Liberty team who arrived in Vegas with prepared hearts and hands prepared for service.

Friday night:   The Circuit Riders led a young adult event called Carry the Love. They called the audience to live a missional lifestyle every day and everywhere. An atheist in attendance was healed and ended up giving his life to Christ as a result.

Saturday afternoon: 
 We held a park party at Desert Bloom Park. Nearly 200 people attended the event in the perfect, 75 degree sunshine.

The Love Vegas week concluded on Sunday with the baptism of Peggy. Peggy came to Christ a month ago after a 17 year addiction to methamphetamines.  Overcoming meth is a big deal! The joy of her new life in Christ was expressed when she attended the Grace City New Members Seminar and declared, “I’m so excited to commit myself completely to Jesus and His church.”

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30 Days Of Crazy

30 DAYS OF CRAZY
By Dave Earley

The last thirty days have been ridiculously busy, highly exhausting, and very fruitful. I have been in seven states, been on 17 airplanes, given 18 different presentations, and had about a dozen other meetings. Yeah.

Monday, Feb.2: We presented the Grace City movement to the North American Mission Board Trustees and President Kevin Ezell in Las Vegas as part of their Vision Tour.

Friday and Saturday Feb 6-7: I was in Salt Lake City sharing with the pastors of the Utah / Idaho Southern Baptist Convention at their annual Evangelism Conference. I was speaking on Spiritual Warfare and Prayer. This great group of church leaders were incredibly open and responsive, saying they especially appreciated the times of prayer for and with each other after each message.

Monday through Friday Feb 9-13: Several of us went to Hawaii to the world’s largest YWAM (Youth with a Mission) base! We met with their leaders to see about how we can partner with their University of the Nations to train more missionaries in Las Vegas. It was a special privilege to meet with YWAM founder Loren Cunningham for over 2 hours. On the way back, plane delays left us stranded in LA overnight (American Airlines = @#$^&*$%$#@).

Monday Feb. 23: I was in Dallas at the Southern Baptist of Texas Evangelism Conference at the First Baptist Church of Euless speaking on prayer. I ran into an ice storm, but I eventually made it to Virginia.

Tuesday Feb 24: I shared with my good friends at the Southern Baptist Conservatives of Virginia Prayer Summit on the role of Prayer and Spiritual Warfare in Revival.  They especially responded to the season of prayer after my session and said they wanted more training.

Wednesday – Friday Feb 25-27: Several of us were at Liberty University for Church Planting Conference working with the CMT. We were recruiting students for our summer internship, discipleship internship, and church planting center. We spoke with nearly 2,000 students as we taught several classes ranging from Evangelism and the Christian Life to Church Ministries to Woman’s Ministries to graduate level Discipleship. I also spoke on the importance of prayer for the Church Planting Conference.

Saturday and Sunday Feb 28, March 1: Unfortunately, Cathy and I got stranded in Charlotte for what would have been 36 hours (US AIR = @%^&*&^%$#@). Fortunately, we were able to change routes and jump on a late plane to Columbus, Ohio so I could see my brother, Steve instead.  He had a lung transplant 18 months ago and just found out he has cancer in his other lung. It was really good to see both Steve and my sister, Carol.

Monday and Tuesday March 2-3: I was in Albuquerque at the Hoffmantown Baptist Church speaking again to the pastors of the New Mexico Baptist Convention on Spiritual Warfare, Pastoral Ministry, and Church Planting.

Hopefully we can enjoy a couple of days of “normal” (Although I have yet to determine exactly what normal looks like in Las Vegas). Then, 20 college students join us Saturday, March 7 for Love Las Vegas, an intense week of outreach.

Then I am going to take a nap.

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SET FREE FROM THE PAST: AUDREY PETTY

SET FREE FROM THE PAST: AUDREY PETTY

By Dave Earley

Steve and Audrey Petty are a couple in the City Group that meets at our house every week. After the first Sunday of our new sermon series, PUSH (Prayer Until Something Happens), Audrey emailed me her story about how God is working in her life. Let me warn you, reading this might make you cry.

I am from the island of Fiji (an island country in Melanesia in the South Pacific Ocean about 1,100 nautical miles northeast of New Zealand’s North Island).

My father was the son of an Indian priest. His last name was Maharaj, indicative of the highest caste. He became a born-again Christian and changed his last name to Bernard, giving up his Hindu religion to preach the Gospel of Christ. He married a Polynesian girl, my mother, Esther, and the two of them helped in expanding the Christian movement in Fiji.  We initially had a good life by Fiji standards.

Everything changed, however, when I was six because my father passed away, leaving my mother with ten children. Suddenly, we were very poor and life was extremely difficult.

By the age of 13, I was preaching on street corners under the direction of a 70 year-old preacher. After church on Sunday, I would walk with my ukulele and my Bible for two hours (with no shoes) to remote Indian villages where nobody spoke English. I would sing, preach, and teach in Hindustani. I visited three houses each week, spending about an hour in each house.  Many people were powerfully delivered from demons.

Today, the church we established is still going strong under their direction.
When I was 21, I was hastily married to a man I barely knew. Everything was fine right up until the day we got married. That same day he told me that I could not be involved in church any more.
We lived very close to the church, and when I would hear the music from the church, I could only cry. He would beat me for crying. The beatings continued every day, even when I was pregnant. When I was 8 months pregnant with my fourth child, he beat me up so badly that I lost the child. He threatened to kill me if I told anyone.

I was like a prisoner
. He was very cruel. I lived in fear and had no self-confidence. After 12 years of taking his abuse and torture, I took the kids and moved out when he left to visit his native island of Rotuma, (A few years ago, we discovered that while married to me, my ex-husband also had a family in Rotuma, with a wife and four children).

Since leaving him, I have remarried and have a great marriage. My husband, Steve, is a former missionary/pastor that I met when he was working in Fiji. We have been together now for 20 years. He and

I have a good life here in the United States and have continued to serve God as He opens doors for us.
Even with a good husband, I wrestled with scars, fears, and anger toward my ex-husband. Several years ago, I was able to forgive him. I have learned to continue to let the joy of God and His peace flow through me.

But part of me was still in bondage to my past life.
Last month, I learned that my former husband will be retiring and wants to come to the United States.  He has always said that one day he will come back and kill me. Suddenly, the ugly memories of that past life, of the lack of self-confidence, of the abuse and fear, and of the pain, all flooded back.

That was until Sunday, February 8, 2015. Pastor Dave started a new series called P.U.S.H., or Pray Until Something Happens. One of the things I put on my list for prayer was to be set free from the past. I have prayed about this before, and have had some measure of victory over it, but it was always with me. My husband and I went Sunday morning and went back again Sunday night. The services were beautiful and powerful with a genuine presence of God’s Holy Spirit. God deeply touched me in both of those services and I felt the spiritual chains fall and the load lifted. I am now so free and at peace!!

That night, I had a very intense, graphic dream. I saw a demonic shape of my ex-husband come to me and start to abuse me. He pushed me against a wall and the fear came flooding over me. I was shaking with fear of him. Suddenly, in my dream, I remembered the services and the preaching and God’s presence. I shouted at him, “You have been defeated in the name of Jesus, and I’m going to pray until something happens.” As

I shouted this over and over, he fell right in front of me and passed out.
I immediately woke up. Now awake, I was still shouting and rebuking him out loud. This is something that has never happened to me in or after a dream. It was at that point I knew this was a confirmation of what I had experienced on Sunday: I have been set free!

I felt like I could climb a mountain! I am filled with an overwhelming joy!

I AM FREE! I give God all the Glory and Praise!”

“You shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free

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PUSH

PUSH
By Dave Earley

Starting February 8, 2015, we at Grace City began taking very seriously the promises of God. For the next eight weeks, we intend to PUSH forward as we Pray Until Something Happens.

We believe that the more we pray, the more God works. The more God works, the better everything will ultimately be.

The Determining Factor
Through the years,  I have found that I was not alone in my belief that prayer is the determining factor. Others have agreed. Slowly read their words:

When we pray, we are working with God to determine the future. Certain things will happen in history if we pray rightly. Richard Foster

Man has it in his power to, by prayer, move God to work in His own way among men, in which way He would not work if prayer was not made. E.M. Bounds

I don’t fully understand it, but I know that the more we pray, the more God works. The more God works, the better things end up being. On many levels prayer is the determining factor.

Prayer is Asking

While we generally use the word “prayer” to describe a variety of ways we communicate with God, at its core the meaning of the word “prayer” is “asking something definite from God.”

Matthew 7:7-11 “Keep asking, and it will be given to you. Keep searching, and you will find. Keep knocking, and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who searches finds, and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened. What man among you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake?11 If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!

Effective Prayer is Stubborn, Steadfast Asking
Jesus told the story of a man who was shamelessly stubborn in asking his friend for bread, and the man relented because of the persistence.

Luke 11:5, 8 He also said to them: “Suppose one of you has a friend and goes to him at midnight and says to him, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread…  I tell you, even though he won’t get up and give him anything because he is his friend, yet because of his friend’s persistence, he will get up and give him as much as he needs.

Jesus told this story with a clear purpose.

Luke 11:9 So I say to you, keep asking, and it will be given to you. Keep searching, and you will find. Keep knocking, and the door will be opened to you.

What do you need from God?

What is it that you need from God? What must you see Him do?
We are making a list of things we must have from God and that we can ask Him for with full confidence. These things can relate to advancing God’s kingdom, seeing loved ones come back to God, getting a job, health needs, and decisions about the future. We intend to keep on coming to God about these things until He takes action and something happens. Join us.
Let’s see what God does as we
Pray Until Something Happens.

My Big Seven

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