TURNING THE WORLD
In times of accelerated change, anticipating the turns is prudent. Yet, for those living in the shadow of His wings, the mandate calls for something more. The call is to navigate the change.
At the heart of all our efforts is what we refer to as the Issachar context: to understand the times so we can know what to do. That premise is the basis of strategy and is foundational to what we do with our efforts with SIGN, with the God’s economy entrepreneurial program and the Joseph-Daniel calling leadership thrust.
Our efforts with SIGN, with our books and our videos have been a beacon of truth for many on almost every continent and the islands of the earth. Our work imparting the wisdom of God’s economy and the leadership strategies of Joseph and Daniel have had hands-on applications in two dozen nations globally.
Having a long track record of traveling to God-appointed destinations in the fulfillment of this calling, in this last year, we have become more and more aware of the increase in intensity tied to the struggle for spiritual change. It has been taking place at each locale we work. The call is to understand the dynamics in order to redirect the change.
Never before has it been so evident: we get on a flight in one “world” and typically 20 to 25 hours later we emerge into another, totally different “world.” The difference is so pronounced, it is like penetrating a time warp. That perspective is significant because it is an apt illustration of the realities of the varying spiritual climates in which we are called to impact.
The illusion for many who carry the moniker of the traveling minister and missionary is that of aligning the rest of the world with the superficialities of pop-Christian culture.
Recognizing the Dynamics
How naive and simultaneously arrogant to the realities of the spirit realm. The mandate for turning the world takes something more. Within each spiritual environment in which we work is a spiritual history, embedded in its culture, economy and power structures.
Without understanding these dynamics, of the cultural, economic and power structures, traditional ministry efforts will never go beyond setting up isolated spiritual storefronts. Without a keen awareness of the spiritual climate, the culture, economy and seats of power will never be changed to any significance. I’ve previously used the illustration of Nigeria being one of the most evangelized nations in the world, yet remaining one of the most impoverished and lawless.
Games can be played with numbers. Numbers don’t always give the full picture. No doubt attracting people to spiritual storefronts has its place, but it is the long way around to ever making a difference within cultures, the economies and the infrastructures of power. I’m not picking on Nigeria nor taking a shot at meaningful evangelistic efforts. We honor and respect our Nigerian brethren and thank God for those who are workers in that spiritual “world.”
I am making the point that our efforts address the hidden issues of culture, economies and the seats of power in these “worlds” we are called to impart our strategies. Likewise, in doing so, we have progressively been amazed by the powerful, enduring nature of the spiritual strategies and wisdom, evident in God’s Word, embraced by God’s people since God has had a people. These strategies, mysteries of God’s wisdom, are designed, against all odds, to spiritually realign the factors foundational to these very different spiritual environments or “worlds” interacting around the globe.
The Leadership Choice
It has become increasingly clear that those we are called to work with are a remnant. They are leaders who are in the minority and who do not have room in their thinking for playing games of churchianity or of importing cleverly devised Western schemes into spiritual environments where they have no enduring value.
My short take on churchianity is that it is the choice between leading by institutionalizing our faith versus leading by the demonstration of the power of God that brings change to the cultures, economies and power structures of the world.
The key factors to employing this difference are strategy, together with holding fast to and demonstrating the reality of God.
Since the first of this year, we have given focus to two totally different worlds with our programs. Each are going through very serious spiritual change. Some recognize it and are reaching for that “something more.” Yet there are others, who ought to be, but whose focus is diverted. For them, it is simply maintaining a course of “more of the same, harder.”
Drivers of Change
Such spiritual change was evident in the first-century church. In the book of Acts the believers were described as those who were turning the world upside down. Their leaders, who had walked with Jesus understood that at the core of the principles of the Kingdom was the employment of righteous power in corrupt settings. A clash of spiritual environments.
It wasn’t about being nice people, touting clever premises or enticing people to the storefront. In concert with the history of God’s people, it was about the demonstration of God’s reality in the face of opposition and threats and persecution.
So it has been with those we have been working with most recently. Yet, among the remnant where we are engaged, are those who are not enticed by the illusions or numbers or machinations of churchianity. Instead the impact they wield conforms to “those who are turning the world, their ‘world’ upside down.”
These are those who think differently. That is because they operate as a culture within a culture. That part of the equation began with Abraham. The “world” of Abraham and those who followed was supernatural. God appeared to them. God spoke to them. When God moved, powerful wonders took place. In all this, God imparted His ways which enabled His followers to stay close to Him and be sanctified and protected against the wiles of spiritual powers which surrounded them.
The reality of God was not an institution, but rather a societal lifestyle of being led by God, as a people, with His power in manifestation. It is the catalyst for change that requires putting it on the line in addressing issues of poverty, corruption and the intentions of evil against the cultural, economic and power structures.
Something different took place in our most recent visit to the islands. It involved a shift of power from what had been subtle encroachments of darkness against their infrastructures and leaders of change. With the masks removed, the manifestations of evil have become overt, exacerbating previous levels of poverty, corruption with rising, organized, seductive voices of evil.
The remnant that called for our help in the steps before them were all leaders: a broad and diverse spiritual sampling of believers who were members of parliament, judges, people of business, lawyers and respected people of influence all reaching for more of God and yielding themselves to being used to restore a heritage they view as having been granted by God, but taken too lightly in its past stewardship.
Our interactions focused on strategy, the interlinking of the natural and supernatural in each of their spheres of influence. We dug in with serious prayer, identification repentance and the intercession needed to close the gap in the turning of their world and the region around them: within its cultures, economies and infrastructures of power.
It targeted the context of the spiritual history that has brought them to this point. There’s been a commitment to one another and the course to follow as the enormity of the problems yields to the focus and clarity of the solutions and the spiritual gates of opportunity.
It was intense and not without backlash. Yet, the discipline and commitment evidenced made strong the momentum and spiritual ground being taken. Truly a turning of the world of this remnant, a turning of the spiritual climate comprising their world is underway.
This is what we do and who we do it with. Please pray for the elections taking place this week and the strategic response of the brethren to turning their world.
Despite amassing storm clouds, great things have been happening spiritually across Asia. However, it is not the institutional growth of church groups that warrants the acclaim, although that can be touted, but rather the simplicity of forerunners, believers out-of-the-box, who refuse to ride the wave of pop-Christian culture and are banding together to turn their world. They are bringing change to the culture, the economy and impacting the power structures.
These are those who are confronting poverty and raising the standard against generally accepted practices of corruption, beginning in the household of faith. These are those who are changing neighborhoods and lifestyles, who are impacting the culture, economy and spiritual climate, the ultimate source of power.
Like Hanh (name changed), who together with her operating board has a growing city-wide program to train the youth in identifying and developing entrepreneurial opportunities. Then there is Phuoc (name changed) whose vision for a private bi-lingual school with wholesome values for believers has received government approval. His first step, of a Kindergarten, also provides English training and regular holiday activities for neighborhood children. Plans are underway to expand into a primary school as they start their second year of operation.
Binh (name changed) has developed several solar-powered products, which are sold internationally from his web-site and assembled by deaf believers. He likewise hosts regular meetings with other believing business owners in his city, as well as hosting a business ethics program that he uses to mobilize Vietnamese brethren across Vietnam and in their communities in surrounding Asian nations.
Nha (name changed) has formed a committee of successful business owners and together with our help has developed a mentoring program, that encourages and disciples members from the next generation to make a difference in their communities through their entrepreneurial pursuits. Kuan (name changed) has taken proceeds from a successful software company he founded and purchased land that includes orchards and grazing land for cows and goats. His workers are members of a believing tribal (ethnic) group who are now sharing in the development of the high-demand clean foods he is developing.
Please pray for these brethren and the strategic initiatives like these — and for the role they have in turning their world.
The Kingdom of God is about the employment of power. It is the power and influence that brings righteous change into corrupt settings. The Kingdom of God is about the manifestation of God’s reality through a remnant willing to pay the cost, so that their stewardship realigns the culture, the economy and power structures. Turning the world.
Jesus said, many are called but few are chosen. The stewardship required to turn the world does not operate with the standard reflected by churchianity and pop-Christian culture. The psalmist describes the progressive steps of the commitment that determines the impact of God’s people on the world around them (Psalm 107).
At the foundations is the establishment of safe places, operational communities where God’s people can grow and flourish in Him (v 7-9). From that point, bondages are broken over the community, as they raise God’s standards for living and working together (v 14-16).
But before God’s people can operate in dominion as a community (v 29-32), the bar has to be raised beyond the standard of those in the world around them. In this sequence (v 20-22), the psalmist makes reference to fools who undermine the standard. In his Proverbs, Solomon has more to say about fools than he does the wise.
The reason is because of the tendency of leaders toward self-righteous thinking and stubbornness when walking in the authority and blessings of God (1 Sam 15:23). Biblically, implicit in operating as a fool is when the righteous and capable who ought to know better, lower the standard either due to spiritual slackness, fear or simply self-righteous arrogance.
The challenge of the thinking is not being snared by success. It is a God-dependency and humility thing. Fools are deceived by being short-sighted and giving unrealistic focus to the method or means rather than the result. The deception then is in majoring in minors and minoring in the majors.
It is replacement thinking that overlooks the value of being regularly washed in God’s truth (Eph 5:26). It is a subtle form of idolatry conditioned to listening to short-sighted deceptions that fails to recognize God’s leading which unfortunately undermines the role of God’s power.
Moses clearly laid out the standard for leaders. It involved making a copy by hand of the five books of Moses and reading it daily (Deut 17). This was a practice insuring there would be no deviation or transgressions from the standard that was to be maintained in the community.
Yet, churchianity-lite and pop-Christian culture lower, rather than raise the standard. They are what the world sees operating (fools and transgressors), rather than a people demonstrating the reality of God. It is the reason the power of God is so constrained.
It is the diversion of God’s best being replaced with a flurry of human effort, well-intentioned, but still human effort that falls far short of being even the second or third best compared to what God intends. When I point to institutionalization becoming the goal rather than the means to the goal, I’m observing the short-sightedness of getting the cart before the horse. It plagues fund-raising efforts. There are those who follow the premises of what will bring in funds. The goal then becomes justified by its means. Such short-sightedness underlies the anemic condition of the church of our day.
The Kingdom of God is at hand. The clarion call is for leaders who will face the fire and turn the world. The strategy involves the recognition of what is required to lead the way as a culture within a culture, without the world squeezing you into its mold. It is the lifestyle based on strategy from on High that turns the world. It is in the confrontation that the power is released. It is what Jesus meant when He said in the world, you’re going to have tribulation, but take heart, because I’ve overcome the world.
Morris Ruddick has been a forerunner and spokesman for the higher dimensions of business leadership since the mid-90s. As founder of Global Initiatives Foundation and designer of the God’s Economy Entrepreneurial Equippers Program, Mr. Ruddick imparts hope and equips economic community builders to be blessed to be a blessing where God’s light is dim in diverse regions around the globe.
He is author of “The Joseph-Daniel Calling;” “Gods Economy, Israel and the Nations;” “The Heart of a King;” “Something More;” “Righteous Power in a Corrupt World;” “Leadership by Anointing;” and “Mantle of Fire,” which address the mobilization of business and governmental leaders with destinies to impact their communities. They are available in print and e-versions from www.Amazon.com, www.apple.com/ibooks and www.BarnesandNoble.com.
Global Initiatives Foundation (www.strategic-initiatives.org) is a tax-exempt 501 (c) 3 non-profit whose efforts are enabled by the generosity of a remnant of faithful friends and contributors whose vision aligns with God’s heart to mobilize economic community builders imparting influence and the blessings of God. Checks on US banks should be made out to Global Initiatives and mailed to PO Box 370291, Denver CO 80237 or by credit card at http://strategicintercession.org/support/
Likewise, email us to schedule a seminar for your group’s gathering on the Joseph-Daniel Calling or on anointing the creative in business.
2017 Copyright Morris Ruddick — firstname.lastname@example.org
Reproduction is prohibited unless permission is given by a SIGN advisor. Since early 1996, the Strategic Intercession Global Network (SIGN) has mobilized prophetic intercessors and leaders committed to targeting strategic-level issues impacting the Body on a global basis. For previous posts or more information on SIGN, check: http://www.strategicintercession.org