Ray Van Gilst


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Would the Real Prophet Please Stand Up?

[fa icon="calendar'] December 12, 2018 / by Ray Van Gilst posted in Gifts of the Spirit

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Occasionally, when I was pastoring, I would hear something like this: “Ray, I really believe that in our church God is saying to us that we need to move more and more toward prayer (or whatever). We’re beginning to move away from it and we need to move back towards it. 

Do you believe that God speaks through His church directly concerning needs like that? I believe he does. I also believe if a message like that is from God, it will be felt throughout the body. It’s something specific. God will speak to his church, and he will communicate that message through his people – that’s prophecy. That’s all it is – it’s not as spooky as we think.

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The Value of Partnership is Clear [Camp Fire Update]

[fa icon="calendar'] December 10, 2018 / by Ray Van Gilst posted in CPD Member Highlights, News

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While the news coming out of Paradise and Chico has slowed down, efforts to help our CPD churches here have only ramped up. Our C&MA family across the nation has mobilized prayer and resources on an unprecedented level. We're also seeing support from non-Alliance churches as God prompts them with this great need.  

While Neighborhood Church in Chico is no longer being used as an evacuation center, NC Chico is still housing our Paradise Alliance Church. Now that we're past some of the initial chaos, I thought it would be good for you to hear directly from Josh Gallagher, the new pastor at Paradise Alliance Church.   

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To Prophesy or Not to Prophesy?

[fa icon="calendar'] November 30, 2018 / by Ray Van Gilst posted in Gifts of the Spirit

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Let’s take a look at serving gifts that speak. The serving gifts themselves break down into two categories:

  1. Serving gifts that speak – prophecy, word of knowledge, word of wisdom
  2. Serving gifts that act, or do something – the gifts of mercy, faith, help, leadership, and giving.

At this point we’re talking about the spiritual gift or spiritual manifestation of prophecy.

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Member Highlight: Pastor Josh Gallagher, Paradise Alliance Church

[fa icon="calendar'] November 21, 2018 / by Ray Van Gilst posted in CPD Member Highlights

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On a regular basis we have been introducing you to our CPD workers and their families. When we went to send our next one out, we realized it was Josh and Erin Gallagher of Paradise. We were speechless at the timing. But even with everything that has taken place [as a result of the Camp Fire], we wanted to follow through and introduce you to a family that while suffering great loss in their first 3 months in the CPD, are nevertheless leading this church with compassion and excellence even while scattered. 

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It's Okay to Be in a Season of Grief [Camp Fire Update]

[fa icon="calendar'] November 19, 2018 / by Ray Van Gilst posted in News

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I thought I would be ready for what I saw today. I wasn't. Not by a long shot. I'm not sure I could ever be. I'm not sure I should ever be. Donice and I were back in Chico Sunday for the combined service of the Chico and Paradise churches, joined by Terry Smith, C&MA Vice President. At one point all the people were asked to stand that had lost homes so we could pray for them. As hundreds of people stood all around this large auditorium, the gasp was audible as we experienced a new depth of grief for those affected by this disaster. It was another service where tears flowed freely.

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Update: How Our Churches Are Being Impacted by the Camp Fire

[fa icon="calendar'] November 16, 2018 / by Ray Van Gilst posted in News

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As many of you know, the devastation caused by the Camp Fire has directly impacted two of our alliance churches. I have never been in a situation where I have heard and said so many times, "Words fail. There are no words to describe this."

It is in times like this that we have no choice but to rely on the Lord like the Psalmist in Psalm 46:1, "God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble." And then the end of the chapter, vs 10-11, "Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth. The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge." 

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God Doesn’t Do That Anymore, Does He?

[fa icon="calendar'] October 31, 2018 / by Ray Van Gilst posted in Gifts of the Spirit

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As we continue to look deeper into the gifts or manifestations of the spirit, it’s so important to realize that they are given of God for service. Pride is such a natural bent in us as humans that we need to guard against thinking it’s all about us or that we are doing things when God is actually the one working through us.

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The "I AM" - His Presence in My Inadequacy

[fa icon="calendar'] September 26, 2018 / by Ray Van Gilst posted in Gifts of the Spirit

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If we have the evangelists planting churches and pastors teaching, one of the things that needs to dawn on all of us is that it’s not enough.

After I Corinthians 12:28 the scripture says, miracles, then gifts of healings, then helps, then administrations, and various kinds of tongues. If we back up to verses 8-10 it says, “To one there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom, to another a message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one spirit, to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues.”

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People Are Gifts Too: Apostles, Prophets, Evangelists and Pastors

[fa icon="calendar'] September 14, 2018 / by Ray Van Gilst posted in Gifts of the Spirit

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A bricklayer whose brother was a famous violinist was talking with his boss one day. His boss said, “It must be great to have a brother who is known around the world.” Then, not thinking that he might have offended his worker’s pride, he continued, “Of course, we must accept the fact that talent isn’t equally distributed – even in the same family.”

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How Our Spiritual Gifts Build Up the Body of Christ

[fa icon="calendar'] September 5, 2018 / by Ray Van Gilst posted in Gifts of the Spirit

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Spiritual gifts have been given for one reason and one reason only – as a stewardship – something that we are to manage in building up the Body of Christ.

I Corinthians 12:5, “There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord.” These services build the Body for the common good. Spiritual gifts are not for our edification – that’s very important as we lay our foundation. They are not to make us feel more important, or more spiritual, or to build us up.

Does what you do edify other people? Is who you are an edifying influence on other people? 

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