Since late July of 2017 until last week, I had been completely immersed in doing my part in a very large-scale Kingdom endeavor. There were many others who worked harder than I, but it would be nearly impossible to describe the degree to which my mind, my time and my energy became invested in this assignment from the Father which will likely determine the next decade of my own Kingdom work. There was not really any inclination within me to let this calling became the main topics of my writing or preaching here on the Transforming Truth website. The ministry of TT is singular: disseminating the teaching and preaching of the Word via multiple media streams across the globe. What the Holy Spirit has been leading me in over the last nine months has been primarily focused upon how the local church where I serve would aim itself for the foreseeable future. Those nine months have now been completed, and yesterday the people of New Bridge Church pulled the trigger on a Kingdom partnership that we believe will be a prototype for many local churches in time to come.
New Bridge has now merged with the family at the Atlanta International House of Prayer. Two years to the day that New Bridge Church was publicly launched, our sanctuary was filled yesterday with the people of IHOP Atlanta and New Bridge as we celebrated the calling of God for these two faith communities to become one. We are now a missions base which includes a 24/7 prayer ministry, a local church, another church for young adults called Forerunner Church, and a missions training and sending organization called Finish the Task. While all of us who are leading the missions base understand that God has taken us into waters which leave us in over our heads, we find it impossible to deny that this merger has left us with higher hopes for our ability to advance the Kingdom than we have ever had before. Frankly, those who are “the experts” in church growth movements, or even strategic partnerships for ministry, would likely not recommend that anyone attempt what we are doing. Foundationally, the missions base is the result of a Baptist church, an Assemblies of God church and a 24/7 house of prayer coming together in our unifying conviction that Jesus Christ in worthy of our intentional oneness. We have examined the potential challenges and have declared them all to be insufficient for us to sidestep the clear will of the Father for our lives and ministries. In Holy Spirit empowered humility, we are laying down our titles, our reputations, our individual desires, our peripheral differences in Kingdom beliefs, and our personal trajectories in ministry. We believe that the privilege of unifying in order to become the answer to Jesus’ repeated cries to the Father in John chapter 17 eclipses anything else that we can do prior to the Second Coming. We believe that Jesus will be reunifying His people so that we can visibly and relationally manifest the reality of our oneness that is declared in Ephesians 4:3-6. We believe this calling to put aside our differences and embrace one another in love and truth will be a clear and repeated calling that the Holy Spirit communicates all over the globe. It is already happening in many places that w know of. Personally, I am convinced that people are answering this call in places that we do not currently know of. It is simply a movement from the Lord that presents a unified Church to an unbelieving world. By this, they can know that we are truly disciples of Jesus Christ.
So, yesterday morning and evening we launched. Our first services together were celebratory, sobering and, quite honestly, emotionally overwhelming. I, and the three other men with whom I serve on the newly constituted pastoral leadership team, led the people in a spiritually charged day of exalting Jesus together. The worship teams, teaching teams, welcome teams, security teams, usher teams and many other teams were comprised of volunteers from both New Bridge and IHOP Atlanta. Nine of months of praying, planning and surrendering culminated in a little more than 1,300 people coming together to say yes to the dream of the Father for our lives.
It was glorious.
Now, some of you may be wondering if this new alignment with IHOP Atlanta will result in any changes in our Transforming Truth media streams. The answer is, simply, no. I will continue to write here on the TT website a couple of times each week. I also plan on implementing a video blog to supplement the written blog. Now that the merger is complete, and I will regain some hours in my overcrowded schedule, I look forward to reinitiating filming The Ricochet, bringing in guests to discuss a host of Kingdom topics. On television, Roku and YouTube, you will continue to be able to watch and hear the sermons just like you have in the past. Our Transforming Truth app remains the best way to access all the material we publish in one single location – download your free copy wherever you download all your other apps. My commitment is to continue to fulfill my individual calling to be a Gospel-mouth while I am alive and well on planet earth. This merger changes so much here at the local church where I serve but Transforming Truth will continue on as it has been, hopefully to greater heights for the King. My great hope is that, as we experience so much more of the heart of God here at the new missions base, everything that we make flow through Transforming Truth to you will contain a higher degree of clarity, competency and conviction.
Friends, we are walking in a beautiful season. These last days are going to be like no other time on this planet. Join me in searching your heart, galvanizing your convictions, and redoubling your commitments to King Jesus.
He is worthy of it all.
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