When God visits us, it is often messy, out-of-the-box, and unpredictable. One of the only predictable characteristics of the upper room is that it is unpredictable. We need to understand that our God is creative and unlike coaches in the National Football League who pace up and down the sidelines with their laminated play sheets, our God has an unlimited number of plays He can call. For this reason, we have learned at the beginning of every upper-room prayer gathering to ask God for His leadership and direction. He is much better at play-calling and upper-room leadership than we are, and He always leads us to receive.
Note from CPD President, Ray Van Gilst:
I recently shared about Wayne Hoag of Truckee, CA and his book - "One Another Project." I have had a number of people now let us know that they are excited about getting a copy and utilizing it in ministry. Even better than the book, the man behind the book is an enthusiastic part of the Central Pacific District and is available as needed in our churches and for our pastors. I, for one, consider him to be a mentor and encouragement in what God has called me to.
But I'll let Wayne share his desire:
WOW, so excited to be giving you this latest update about our Guarajio Initiative in Mexico. As you know, we have been partnering with Alliance Mexico to engage this unreached people group.
Please read the update below from Tomas Bencomo, President of Alliance Mexico, and celebrate the miracles God is performing both physically and spiritually. How wonderful to be ON MISSION with Him as He is touching the hearts of this unreached tribe!
And please keep our Alliance Mexico team in your prayers!!
To the ends of the earth,
On Saturday, November 2, a group of 50 people who are part of the Central Pacific District completed a church planting training in the city of Woodland, CA.
For the first time in The Christian and Missionary Alliance’s history, we witness the largest group of Hispanics completing 42 classes over 100 hours of church planting training.
The greatest revolution taking place today in the church around the world is an awakening and rediscovery of the distinction between the omnipresence of God and His manifest presence.
God’s omnipresence, or His everywhere presence, is a wonderful reality taught throughout the Bible. It’s comforting to know that no matter where we are, we cannot escape from God’s everywhere presence. We must understand, however, that God’s omnipresence is not what separates the church from the sports bar or fitness center down the street.
The more perplexing question about the disciples’ prayer life is not why they failed, but how did they succeed? If they could not pray one hour on the final night of Jesus’ life, how did they pray 10 days—or the better part of two hundred-forty hours—only a month later?
God has blessed my life with a beautiful family, and of course, my wife is my greatest treasure. After years of studying with Tozer Seminar, my beloved wife and three other Hispanic women from the Central Pacific District have obtained their CPD license. Now Teresa Barrera, Lilia Ramirez, Cathy Sanchez and Nubia Castro are accredited to work in the Christian and Missionary Alliance Women and Children Ministries.
I vividly remember as a kid when school let out that it meant just one thing to me, summer camp was just around the corner. Remember the energy you received from the group experience? The attention you received from a caring counselor? The adventures, achievements and activities you still reflect back on today? In my late teens I became a camp counselor and eventually ended up serving full-time in Christian Camping. Now after forty summers of camp, would you like to know why I am still motivated to do what I do?
About 25 years ago when I was planting a church in St. George, UT, Wayne Hoag came through on something called "The Great American Race." I was facing a discouraging point in ministry there, and he took me to breakfast, spoke words of life and prayed for me.
I have never forgotten that moment and how much it meant to me. Wayne has gone on to touch countless lives with his presence, and also with a book, "The One Another Project." He continues to serve our church in Truckee, although not as Lead Pastor, having made an excellent transition to Jesse Richardson who now serves in that role.
- Ray Van Gilst
If you’re not a prayer meeting type of person, let me encourage you—neither was I and neither were the apostles. Jesus’ disciples were no more capable of praying for 10 days than they were to fly to the moon. The night prior to His execution, Jesus urged His disciples to pray with Him for an hour—a mere sixty minutes—but they couldn’t do it. They kept dozing off. They failed miserably. Rather than joining Jesus in His upper room of prayer, they each rolled over, grabbed their pillows, and fell back asleep. Now, only a month later, they can pray like champions. So, what happened?