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Reason for The Season

As another year closes and a new year begins, it is so important to take a moment and reflect on the many blessings we have been given. Although believers in Jesus Christ may understand the “reason for the season” the holidays, for many, can be a painful reminder of all the obstacles life has thrown against us.Riley Stephenson Haltom City

What a wonderful holiday season we’ve had for ministry!

It began with our “Thanksgiving Reach,” Kenneth Copeland Ministries’ holiday outreach in Fort Worth, Texas, at the Joseph Storehouse. On the day of the event, dozens of workers arrived before sunup to set up an outdoor stage, a sound system and 2,000 chairs as well as bounce houses and other fun stations. As morning broke, thousands of locals lined up to receive a frozen turkey and a twenty-dollar voucher for groceries.

Before we distributed the food, we held a worship service. It was wonderful for me to see both of my daughters and many close friends onstage worshiping the Lord. Hundreds of the people who attended the event responded to the message that was shared, many coming forward for a healing prayer or to pray the prayer of salvation.

After the service we handed out the food as the kids played in the bounce houses and enjoyed face painting and clowns.

The testimonies of the day were astounding! One lady told me that her family would not have had a Thanksgiving meal if we hadn’t provided it for her. By the end of the week, we had handed out 1500 turkeys, and 272 people had prayed to receive salvation. Watch video!

But that’s not all! For our “Christmas Reach,” we partnered with the Joplin Family Worship Center in Joplin, Missouri, a city that experienced a huge amount of destruction and loss in the tornado of 2011. Our team set up a toy store for local families to be able to choose brand new toys, free of charge, for their children this Christmas. Over 300 families received a total of 2,500 toys that would be given to 810 children. One lady told us that she was amazed at the quality of the gifts we provided. She also added that the toys were exactly what her children wanted.

As people chose their gifts, we shared with them the love of Jesus. Through the course of the event, 404 people give their lives to Jesus, and over 50 people receiving physical healing.

It was truly awesome to watch people receive our gifts, but it was more amazing to see them receive the greatest gift of all—the gift of salvation in Jesus Christ. Watch video!

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Friends

Jesus was a friend of sinners. I like how the New Living Translation puts it: “Tax collectors and other notorious sinners often came to listen to Jesus teach. This made the Pharisees and teachers of religious law complain that he was associating with such sinful people—even eating with them!” (Luke 15:1–2, NLT).

Jesus was a friend of “notorious sinners.” If Jesus cared for objectionable people, so should we.

But as Christians, we sometimes get caught up in our own little bubble. We watch Christian TV. We send our kids to private Christian school. We listen to Christian radio. We do business with Christians and have Christian friends—the whole time never associating with the world around us. We can get so caught up in the me-and-my-three syndrome that we fail to reach out to our neighbors, friends and co-workers.

Once, as I taught on this passage at a church, I asked the group, “Who in your city could be labeled a notorious sinner?” I wasn’t looking for a public response, but someone shouted out, “The mayor!” The county in this area had been a dry county and had just turned wet, and the mayor had played a big part in that decision. So I encouraged the church to become friends with the city officials!

There’s a scripture in Jude I like that illustrates how we are to respond to sinners: “Rescue others by snatching them from the flames of judgment. Show mercy to still others, but do so with great caution, hating the sins that contaminate their lives” (Jude 1:23, NLT). We are supposed to hate the sin, but not the sinner. We aren’t to condemn or judge sinners—we are to love them. John 3:17 says, “God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world but to save the world through him” (NLT).

I was speaking on this subject in a small town in Texas. After the teaching, teams of students and leaders went to the streets to apply what we had been learning. I had brought with me a few people from our ministry to help with the training, and one of our ladies rode with the associate pastor and his wife.

As they drove, this lady noticed a man digging in a dumpster. “Stop the car! Stop the car!” she called out. The pastor stopped, and the woman jumped out and ran over to this guy. She began to tell the man how much God loved him and that the Lord had a great plan for his life. She shared the Word of God with him—and that man prayed to receive Jesus.

When the teams came back to the church, I asked for testimonies. The associate pastor came forward and shared what he had seen. “Every day,” he concluded, “we see this guy walking down the street, digging in dumpsters.” Tears began to flow from his eyes. “But we’ve never even thought about where he might spend eternity.”

Let’s not be so caught up in our own world that we lose sight of those whom Jesus came to save.


Your Mouth Is a Tool


In the book of Mark, there’s an interesting little story about a woman who had suffered from a hemorrhage for twelve years. This woman had no options in the natural. She had spent all her money on doctors and had only gotten worse. But she heard about Jesus and how He had been healing the sick. So she started meditating on Jesus, and she began to use her mouth as a tool. “She kept saying, If I only touch His garments, I shall be restored to health” (Mark 5:28, AMP).
This woman began to speak what she wanted instead of what she was experiencing. She started speaking words of faith! She made a determination in her heart that if she could just touch Jesus, she would be made whole. She kept saying!
The Bible tells us that if we do not doubt in our heart but believe that those things we say will be done, we will have whatever we say: “I tell you the truth, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart but believes that what he says will happen, it will be done for him” (Mark 11:23). When I first saw this scripture years ago, I got so excited that I immediately began to put it to work in my life.
I really wanted to wear nice clothes to church on Sunday, because I thought it was important to dress my best in God’s house . But we had no extra money, so my only option was to use my faith. The finest clothes I had in my closet were two pair of pants, one navy and the other khaki, and I had one white button-down shirt and one light blue one. So every week I switched out my look: one week I’d wear khaki pants with the blue shirt, and the next I’d wear navy pants with the white shirt. Every time I ironed my pants on Sunday morning, I would say, “I thank You, Lord, for my new clothes.” Then I’d iron my shirts, and I’d say, “I thank You, Lord, for my new clothes.”
Not long after I began thanking the Lord for new clothes, I painted the exterior of a lady’s house. This woman told me that before her husband had died, she had bought him some nice dress shoes. “If they fit you,” she said to me, “I would love for you to have them.” So I tried them on, and guess what? They were a perfect fit.
When I brought those new shoes home, my wife said, “Wow, Riley, those are Johnson & Murphy. They’re two-hundred-dollar shoes! If the Lord is blessing you with shoes like that, suits are coming!”
So I changed what I was saying. Every Sunday morning when I ironed my clothes, I started saying, “Thank You, Lord, for my new suits.”
Three months later a couple invited my wife and me to join them for lunch at their home after church. After the meal the man asked me to forgive him. He told me that three months earlier the Lord had told him to give me a gift, and he hadn’t done it. Of course I forgave him. As soon as I told him so, the man went to his closet and brought out five suits and five ties for me! Yes, he did—and every one fit perfectly!
“But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you” (Matt. 6:33, NKJV).
“And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus” (Phil. 4:19, NKJV).
Whatever situation or circumstance you may be going through, whatever your needs may be, train your mouth to be obedient to the Word of God. Whether you need healing, financial help or deliverance, use your mouth as a tool to bring in your harvest—spirit, soul and body!


2012 Prophecy Kenneth Copeland – What about 2012?

“What about 2012? What does it hold? What’s in store? What’s in store for the nations? What’s in store for Israel and what’s in store for the Church? I have a great storehouse. Much more has been stored up in the storehouse of riches beyond your wildest dream that I laid up for you before the foundation of the world. Much more is stored up there than what the Church has ever called for. I never have held back on the Church,” saith The LORD and the God of plenty. “I’ve made it available to you. I put it in My WORD. I gave you a promise and stood behind it with the blood, precious blood of your Savior. But there has been a backwardness in My people about laying hold of the things that I have provided for you. But I will say this: There is a people in the land. There is a people around the world. There is a people strong and mighty, growing much stronger and much mightier and more bold to lay hold and put their claim of faith on the things that I have laid up for you and it thrills Me,” saith The LORD, “because it’s been yours all the time.

“Ah, but what about 2012? 2012 is a year full of surprises. Some surprises are going to shake people up. Some surprises are going to shake people down. But for those who are listening to My voice, those who have made themselves available to My Spirit and to My WORD, you’ll have surprises. Oh, not like the world and not like a lot of carnal-minded Christians. Your surprises will come as suddenlies. Like in My WORD when it said, ‘And suddenly there came upon them.’ And you’ll stand up with a big smile on your face and say ‘I just got a suddenly, didn’t I? Oh! Yes.’ But it’ll not take you by surprise because I said in My WORD I’d show you things to come. I said in My WORD what I speak the Holy Ghost will hear and He will speak it to you. And there are those of you who are seeking My voice and seeking My WORD and seeking My Name and looking at Me in My face while I’m looking at you in your face. And together we’ll walk in this and together we’ll walk through this and there’ll come a time when you’ll just smile at Me and I’ll just smile at you and you’ll say, ‘Ha. Ha. Ha. I knew that all the time. Praise God. My Father showed me that was coming and I was all prepared and it didn’t come on me as a suddenly. But this other surprise that came on me. Oh, what joy. Oh, what thrill. Oh, what goodness. I wonder what else my Father has in store for me. Hallelujah. Praise God.’

“2012? I’ll tell you about 2012. It’s going to be a year of great joy for those who know joy. It’ll be a time of marvelous breakthroughs. This is a time of victory. It’s a time when people begin to realize that My WORD is a living WORD, that My Spirit is the living Spirit, and that you are My voice in the earth. And your voice is the voice of victory. So rejoice and shout and understand that the breakthroughs that you’ve sought and watched over, prayed over, stood in faith for, ah, don’t turn loose now. Don’t turn loose now because they’re at hand. They’re right at hand. They’re right on top of you right now. Praise God. Hey!

“Have no worry. Do not be in fear about the United States of America. Don’t be in fear over the failure of this republic. This is not the time for this nation to fail. I’m not done with it yet. And it may come as a surprise to many; this nation is not done with Me yet,” saith The LORD. Hallelujah.

“We have a job to do. And this year will be like none other where this nation is concerned. And many will say, ‘Oh, woe is us! Oh, woe is us!’ And you know what? Oh, woe will be them.

“And there are others who’ll say, ‘Oh, we can’t win! We can’t win!’ And to them they can’t win.

“Ah, but to those of them who say, ‘Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha. This is a time of greatness! America again! Oh, and it’s my nation and it’s God’s nation and we’re right where we’re supposed to be. He has us right where He wants us, and our future is bright because God is still LORD over the United States of America.’

“So rejoice and give forth a glad sound because The LORD of glory is still on the throne and prayer changes things and together we’re going on to greater victory.

“Oh yes! 2012 is a time of miracles. Miracles that seemed as if they would not come but they’re here. There is an atmosphere conducive to miracles that’s been growing and growing and will manifest greatly in the first quarter of 2012 and continue throughout the year and on into 2013. I’ve been looking forward to 2012,” saith The LORD. “I know how it’s going to turn out. I’ve already dealt with it in My WORD. Your future is looking better all the time. But of course you’ll need to look at it through My eyes,” saith the Spirit of grace. “So as I said before, rejoice, for your time has come.” – Prophecy given by Kenneth Copeland November 10, 2011 at Washington, DC Victory Campaign


Halloween Outreach in Athens, Ohio

This past weekend, I had the honor of training believers in Athens, Ohio, on “How to Share Jesus Effectively.” We met at Abundant Life Church with Pastor Bob Gall and his team. After the training, we embarked on the adventure of winning souls at “The Nation’s Largest Halloween Block Party” in Athens. Athens is home to Ohio University, the number one party school according to the Princeton Review. Our team has ministered the love of Jesus at this event for the past few years.

Team members drove in from as far away as Milwaukee, WI, and flew in from Jacksonville Beach, FL, and Fort Worth, TX.

We began at 6 p.m. making our way through all of the costumed Halloweeners. We asked the Lord to show us specifically whom we were supposed to talk to. Taking the Gospel in love, and to the glory of the Lord, we were able to pray with 136 people to receive Jesus.

One of our “Snatch & Rescue” laborers walked up to a man standing against a wall. We asked him If he were to die tonight would he go to heaven. He said, “Man, I already know I’m going straight to Hell. I just want to make sure my 3 yr old makes it to Heaven.” We ministered to him and he prayed to receive Jesus. We were all excited for him.

A couple of other team members prayed with a young man while his girlfriend, already a Christian, looked on with tears of joy in her eyes.

Team members reported that several people thanked them for what they were doing. I think it’s because we tried to be led by love, and the love of God is irresistible. By contrast, a church from out of town had taken up a position at the main intersection in town. Their approach was what one person called “bullhorn Christianity” – yelling at people about how evil and sinful they were.

Jesus referred to what He preached as “good news.” It’s not good news just to hear that you’re a miserable sinner. People already know that. The Bible says the Holy Spirit convicts the world of sin, righteousness, and judgment. The good news is that Jesus came so people could have eternal life. He came to deliver people from the kingdom of darkness and to pick them up and transport them into the kingdom of God. He came to restore THE BLESSING. That is good news! And it’s that good news that 136 people responded to.

If you want to see a video about this outreach, look at the one on my YouTube channel by following this link: http://youtu.be/Sj3cWMEFoxU. Thanks for all your prayers and support.

 


Top Five Reasons People Don’t Witness About Their iPhone

A couple of years ago I was blessed to receive something truly amazing. When I got this it changed my life. So many of my daily tasks were not only made easier, they were so much fun now. I couldn’t wait to show all my friends the wonders of my new iPhone. To this day, years later, I still show off the new tricks and apps this phone possesses. I know it seems like telling your friends about your new phone would be easy, but in my experience there are five main reasons people are afraid to tell others about their iPhone.
1. The number one reason is fear.
With all of the available options in the smart phone world what if people don’t like my iPhone? What if I go tell my friend about my iPhone and they already have and Android phone? I can’t tell them how dangerous the Android application market is and how safe the Apple store is because they will think I am judging their phone. Don’t even get me started on all the other little smart phone niches like Nokia and Pantech. I know my iPhone is the only true option for ultimate connectivity and safety, but everyone has to make their own choices when it comes to smart phones.
2. Excuses!
I just don’t have the time. They wouldn’t like the iPhone anyway. If they knew I used an iPhone they wouldn’t talk to me anymore. Someone will tell them about the iPhone eventually. Surely everyone has already heard about the iPhone.
3. I have to feel compelled to tell people about my iPhone.
I can’t just run up to a stranger and tell them about how I can’t live without my iPhone, I have to know it’s the right time. I have to feel led. I don’t want to over market my phone. The iPhone is so amazing it’s benefits are obvious even without me saying anything.
4. Some people work in Marketing and others work in Sales.
I feel ok telling people about my iPhone, but I can’t ask them to buy one too! My job isn’t to sell them, just share my personal experience with them. I don’t want them to think that I am being pushy. I don’t want them to feel pressured. Someone else will get their iPhone business.
5. “I’m not qualified.”
I’m not MapQuest, I can’t lead people to Apple. I don’t work for the genius bar. I am not personally related to Steve Jobs, people won’t listen to me. If I try to tell them that Android phones will never truly fulfill them I will sound judgmental. I love my iPhone and I know that I can’t live without it, but I simply can’t try and convert anyone else.

As silly and trite as all that sounded how many of us have put more thought into how we will tell people about our new phone instead of how we will tell others about Jesus. There are a million excuses we will encounter on a daily basis for why we can’t witness to someone who may die without the love of Jesus. No matter which excuse presents itself Mark 16:15-18 says: And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. He who believes and is baptized will be
saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned. And these
signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out
demons; they will speak with new tongues; they will take up
serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt
them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.”
Jesus commanded ALL Christians to preach the good news of salvation. It may not always seem easy and fear may try to creep in, but Jesus died so that we may ALL have eternal life. None of us are perfect, but we are specifically designed by God to be able to reach those people that we were ordained to come across. Don’t allow an excuse to possibly jeopardize someone’s opportunity to spend eternity with Jesus.


Prayer in a Catfish Restaurant

As our final day in Alabama came to a close, we prayed for our last KCM Partners and decided to find a place to eat as we headed back to our hotel. We had already discussed eating at a different restaurant, but as we drove, a Catfish joint caught our eye. The restaurant had some live entertainment, and as we walked in I noticed the opportunity God had given me to pray over the people who were also enjoying their catfish meals.

I wrote the man who was playing a note asking him if he would sing Amazing Grace, and if I could pray over the people once he’d finished; however, the man didn’t not see my note so once he finished I personally asked him if I could pray over the people who were affected by the devastation of the tornadoes.  He was more than happy to allow me to pray. As I took the microphone I began to pray over the people of Alabama; at the end of the prayer, I had the people in the restaurant all bow their heads and we all prayed the prayer of salvation together. Everyone in the restaurant, staff included, bowed their heads and prayed the prayer with us. The Lord purposefully had us eat catfish that evening so that we could bring his encouragement and love into a dismal and hopeless place.

Watch Video!