Praying with your spirit…

Here is a little personal history. Thirty years ago this weekend, my dad, John Lamos passed away at sixty years of age. Since 1962 (the year I was born), that man showed me how to live in friendship with Jesus. By the time I was eighteen, I had surrendered my life to Jesus as my father did.

In friendship with Jesus, I have learned that I am a living soul. That is a complex but foundational reality. As a living soul, I need to pray. Prayer is like breathing. It keeps me alive. I have to breathe. I also have to pray to stay connected to the life God intended for me… eternal life. (John 3:16)

I feel like I will always be in training when it comes to prayer. I am always learning to pray more effectively. Through prayer, we engage with God’s agenda… to see his kingdom come and his will done on earth as it is in heaven. I want to grow as a prayer warrior in every season of my life.
A half-century of friendship with Jesus has shown me much about prayer. I have discovered that as a living soul, I have a spirit and a mind. Both are active in prayer. But, not just randomly. It matters whether I lead in prayer with my mind or my spirit.

The Apostle Paul taught us, “…pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests.” and “I will pray with my spirit, but I will pray with my mind also” (Ephesians 6:18, 1 Corinthians 14:15) Through his teachings, I am convinced that no one knows my mind like my spirit.

It is the same with God. No one knows the mind of God except the Spirit of God. (1 Corinthians 2:10-11) So, I am continually learning to pray in the Spirit. To do that, I intentionally engage with the Lord with an expectation that the Holy Spirit will help me. My objective is always to pray with my spirit and with my mind. But, it is crucial that I train my spirit to lead the way. My mind has to stay submitted to my spirit for prayer to be effective.

With my mind submitted to my spirit, I can trust the Holy Spirit to protect and guide me to pray with the heart and agenda of God. Can you learn to do that in a day or a week? No. This will be a life mission for anyone who wants to fully explore their potential in prayer.

The more I pray in the Spirit, the more I perceive the prophetic. With my spirit, I discern access points where heavenly doors or windows or wells are open making God’s provisions available to me for earthly issues. Praying in the Spirit empowers me to receive and declare the living word of the Lord.

Without a commitment to grow more and more in prayer, I would never have taken my journey in the prophetic. It has been a desire to pray that has fueled the prophetic.

If the idea of praying with your spirit is new to you, I encourage you to make a habit of asking God in the name of Jesus, to help you activate your spirit in prayer. Don’t pressure yourself to copy someone else in this. The Father can be trusted to lead you based on the way he designed you.

One gateway into this sort of activation is to watch or listen for impossible things to come before you in prayer. Your spirit is designed to agree with the Holy Spirit for impossible things to be accomplished for the glory of Jesus Christ. As impossible things come before you in prayer, don’t back off. Instead, lean into them and say something like, “Yes, I believe in the name of Jesus that it will happen on earth as it is in heaven”. Allow yourself to worship and to become more aware of who you are in the spiritual dimension. The Lord will help you gain awareness and fluency as you practice and persevere. Be patient with yourself and ask a father or mother in the Lord to help you.

My prayer for you is that you will not settle for a default prayer position with your mind constantly leading the way. We need you, the church needs you, the world needs you to pray in the Spirit on all occasions. Don’t lose heart and keep going after it.

You are a blessing!

Weakness… Portal to God’s Power

Thank you so much for asking the Lord for words to prophesy over me on my birthday (Nov 13). I have captured and saved the messages you sent. Our Father poured out the generosity of his household to me through your prophetic words. The family of King Jesus is glorious and has the power and authority to bless like no other network anywhere in the world.

What an incredible honor it is for me to craft words into works that you would read and be affected by eternal things from God! There are unlimited provisions available to us because of Jesus. You are designed to live, move, and exist by receiving and sharing those provisions. God blesses me by allowing me to write out of what he has poured into me.

I was reading 2 Corinthians 12:9-10 in “The Passion Translation” this morning. In his letter, the Apostle Paul wrote about his weaknesses and especially how he chose to handle them. In Brian Simmons’ paraphrase it reads, “…my weakness is a portal to God’s power.”

Being able to perceive yourself with both God-given strengths AND weaknesses is crucial to prophesying. Every one of us fights a personal battle with insecurity over our weaknesses being exposed. You are not alone and we all get that it’s hard for you to be vulnerable. We have that in common.

The church is designed to be prophetic… along with apostolic, evangelistic, shepherding, and teaching. (Ephesians 4) Those of us who have heard God’s call to help others grow in the prophetic must properly steward our weaknesses.

Here is the scripture from 2 Corinthians I was reading today, “But he answered me, “My grace is always more than enough for you, and my power finds its full expression through your weakness.” So I will celebrate my weaknesses, for when I’m weak I sense more deeply the mighty power of Christ living in me. So I’m not defeated by my weakness, but delighted! For when I feel my weakness and endure mistreatment—when I’m surrounded with troubles on every side and face persecution because of my love for Christ—I am made yet stronger. For my weakness becomes a portal to God’s power.” (2 Corinthians 12:9-10)

The word of the Lord to us today is actually an invitation to trust him with our weaknesses. How powerful would it be if people could see the glory of God on us because we are not defeated but actually delighted by the ways we are weak? This will take courage and faith. But, he provides the unlimited grace that is needed. I pray that there will be a resurgence of the glory of God’s household in the generations beginning with us.

You are a blessing!

Hungry for the word of the Lord and the signs of heaven?

Samuel was a prophet to Israel in the Old Testament. He had an amazing track record with the people of God. It was written of him, “The Lord was with Samuel as he grew up, and he let none of Samuel’s words fall to the ground. And all Israel from Dan to Beersheba recognized that Samuel was attested as a prophet of the Lord.” (1 Samuel 3:19-20)

I love the story of how Samuel was introduced to the prophetic while he was a boy. You can read it in 1 Samuel 3. There is so much to learn from the interaction between Eli, Samuel, and the Lord. It speaks loudly to us about the need for spiritual mothers and fathers to step up and own what has been entrusted to us.

However, I want to focus on the first verse in the chapter. “In those days the word of the Lord was rare; there were not many visions.” (1 Samuel 3:1) Take a moment and think about that. What would it be like to live in a time when you almost never perceived the word of the Lord and almost no one saw visions? Maybe we know about that far too well.

I don’t believe that the living word of the Lord was scarce or unavailable. It is usually the case that engaging with it is rare and unusual. God is not honored or pleased to make his amazing Presence known anywhere his living word is not welcomed and embraced. Oh, He is there, but the manifestation of the Holy Spirit won’t be experienced.

The voice of the Lord is speaking today. We will hear it if we long for it. If the church will set our hearts on being with him by faith in King Jesus, and surrender to whatever he needs to do in us, we will hear his voice. (see Isaiah 6:1-8)

There is an unprecedented move of God rising up in the world. It is marked by a hunger and thirst for the living words of the Lord. Will we be a generation who won’t stop until it is said, “the word of the Lord was overflowing and the signs of heaven were everywhere”? THAT would be amazing. By the grace of God, that is what we are going after.

You are a blessing!

My Story #5 – For God’s Sake, Be Yourself!

For those of you who have been following my story, I would love to hear yours! If you are already telling it in a blog or some other way, please let me know 🙂

I met a friend of mine almost 30 years ago. His name is Karl Ingersoll. He was a youth pastor near Jamestown, New York at the time. I had just finished my second year of Bible College and was touring the North East USA with a music & youth camp counselling team. We were on the road recruiting students. But, I was on a desperate search to find God’s calling for my life.

Karl spoke into my life on that night. We were standing in his youth room with about 5o of his youth group students. It was loud and chaotic and we were watching four of them play fooseball. I had never met him before. But, he was asking me to tell him my story. So I laid it out there and he intuitively picked up on the fact that I was aching for some peace over the issue of finding my way in life as a young adult.

I don’t remember all that he said to me in our 10 minute conversation. But, one statement has stayed with me to this day. He said,

“I think you are a great guy and you are going to speak into people’s lives.

God’s gonna use you. Just be yourself. That’s His call for you… be yourself.

It’s gonna be great!”

There was something about that moment that broke something on the inside of me. It was like someone walked by my prison cell and slipped me the key to break out into freedom.

The journey hasn’t been easy and there are lots of haters in the unseen world and maybe a few in the seen realm that have come against me. But, I am still being myself and it has been great! It’s all to Jesus credit and glory. He has never left me and always fills me back up with hope and grace whenever I turn to Him.

And I just want to say today, “Hey Karl!, ‘Thanks buddy’!”