Leap Over These 3 Hurdles and Grow Your Prophetic Gift

Today I would like to share about an important key to developing your spiritual gifts. This is one that I still find difficult personally on some occasions. However, I know that I would not be where I am today, if I had not grown in this area.

In every area of life, feedback from others is vitally needed, to help us grow and develop our gifts and skills. As it has been said, ‘Feedback is the breakfast of champions!’

This is also true concerning our spiritual gifts of prophecy and discernment.

If we do not know how to improve and sharpen our spiritual gifts—and the manner in which we use them—we will not reach our full potential.

Starting Prophetic MinistryFeedback is particularly important because:

  • We receive advice concerning things that may be ‘blind spots’ to us
  • We learn from the wisdom of others who are ahead of us on the journey
  • Our ability to communicate clearly what God has spoken to us is sharpened
  • It provides confirmation of our prophetic insight that benefits us and those we are ministering to

Through feedback, you can assess the degree to which your ministry is helpful. You can also ensure that there is no gap between what you have heard from God (regarding His heart and intention for a person and or situation) and what the person has actually perceived through your communication.

Feedback can come from

  • A person you share a prophetic insight with
  • A leader, pastor, or spiritual oversight in the situation you are ministering in
  • A mentor or fellow team member

Following are three obstacles that can stand in the way of you benefiting from honest feedback concerning your ministry or an insight you have shared:

1. Fear of Disapproval

Exercising spiritual gifts is not a place for fragile egos. We need to be strong in our sense of Father God’s approval on our lives. When we stand confident in Whose we are and who we are, we can embrace whatever assistance we need to grow. People can provide feedback without the concern that we will get hurt or react badly to what they say.

2. Past Hurts that are still Affecting you

Past hurts can affect our ability to receive feedback if our viewpoint is coloured by an earlier rejection. This is especially true if we have been hurt by someone who was a leader or authority figure in our lives. We may fear the same thing happening again, become self-protective and close up.

3. Believing Your Ability to Hear from God is Infallible.

It is a mistake to believe that we are infallible in our ability to hear from God. The Bible teaches us to weigh up prophecy. (1 Cor 14:29, 1 Thess 5:19-21) Discernment is something that we mature in. (Heb 5:14)

When we are in the process of learning and growing in our gifts, portraying an insight as being a definite word from God (without the openness to having it weighed up) can prevent honest feedback. Others will perceive that we are closed to any other viewpoint.


The Power of Spiritual Oversight

Leadership is not a ceiling on your gift. Leadership is what breaks open the ceiling over your gift.

If I had not found my way over these three hurdles, I would not be where I am today—thriving in prophetic ministry under the leadership of Prophet David McCracken, being on a fivefold ministry team and helping many others through Enliven Blog.

Today I would like to share a significant part of my journey with you—written about in ‘Prophetic People in a Changing Church’. During this period of time, I had a lot of things that were hindering my ability to be teachable, dealt with by my Heavenly Father. These included hurt, misunderstanding, spiritual pride, a religious spirit and a great deal of discouragement.

If the obstacles facing you today in regards to being released in your ministry loom large, take heart from my story. Nothing is impossible for our God.


Prophetic People in a Changing Church—2nd Edition

Now with Foreword and additional chapter for pastors and senior ministry leaders by David McCracken.

Prophetic People in a Changing Church 2nd EditionFor two weeks only, I am holding the current price on the new edition of $4.95 AUD.

  • Have changes in church life impacted upon your personal priorities, relationships and ministry dreams?
  • Are you, or others around you, experiencing discouragement, or have you been hurt in church life?
  • Are you wondering how your prophetic or prayer gifts can be used in your current church setting?
  • Or—are you a ministry leader who would like keys to lead a prophetic community, foster unity and help prevent division?

‘Prophetic People in a Changing Church’ is my personal ‘true confessions’ story of hurt, failure and restoration in prophetic and prayer ministry. This book is not only a powerful testimony—‘Prophetic People in a Changing Church’ explores how you can:

  • Explore the unique challenges facing people with prophetic gifts in churches today
  • Learn how to escape the battles of the mind and heart that discouragement in church life can bring
  • Use prophetic and intercessory prayer gifts in the current church environment
  • Discover the causes of division in the church and how to avoid them—including discouragement, spiritual pride, hurts, criticism and the religious and Jezebellic spirit

‘Prophetic People in a Changing Church’ contains my personal story and is the book that launched the ministry of Enliven Blog. It will provide you with keys to transformation and personal renewal in your church and ministry life.

For more information, and to purchase ‘Prophetic People in a Changing Church’ visit our online store here.

Note: All transactions are secure using PayPal and we do not pass your information on to third parties. Prices are listed in Australian dollars – our store will convert to your currency.


© 2016 Helen Calder Enliven Blog – Prophetic Teaching

On team with David McCracken Ministries: Prophetic Ministry That Empowers The Church

Did you receive this from a friend? Read more from Enliven Blog or sign to receive our weekly prophetic teaching updates at http://enlivenpublishing.com/blog

How to add Words of Knowledge to Prophecy (and Sharpen Your Gift)

Today I have a suggestion for those of you who are keen to grow past the beginning stage of prophecy. This tip about adding words of knowledge to prophecy will be especially helpful if you:
Add words of knowledge to prophecy

  • Have mainly given prophetic insights and words of encouragement or exhortation up until now, and would like to have a greater clarity in hearing from the Holy Spirit
  • Would like to add words of knowledge to your prophetic ministry
  • Are a leader who is looking for ways to activate others in prophetic ministry in a safe environment

How to Add Words of Knowledge to Prophecy

1. Be open to receive knowledge from the Holy Spirit concerning someone’s past or present situation.

A ‘word of knowledge’, is information given to you by the Holy Spirit about a person or situation that could not be known by natural means.

There are many ways the Holy Spirit may share an insight with you, such as through an impression, thought, feeling, physical sensation, vision or picture.

By beginning with knowledge that relates to the past or present, you can have immediate feedback as to whether you are hearing the Holy Spirit clearly (or not). This helps sharpen your prophetic gift.


2. Always seek to add encouragement, comfort, or exhortation to the knowledge, to complete the word. This is an important key.

‘But the one who prophesies speaks to people for their strengthening, encouraging and comfort.’ (1 Cor 14:3, NIV)

For example, you may have an insight that someone is concerned about an issue right now with family/work/health/finances. What is Father’s encouragement for them? What is He up to? If the insight relates to something from the past, how does Father see that, what is He doing in relation to that—if it is about a difficult situation, how is He redeeming that?

Step into the heart of the Father and speak from the perspective of His love for the person.


3. When delivering the prophetic insight, you can ask questions to check you are hearing from the Spirit, such as, ‘Does ___ mean anything to you?’

Be honest, if you are practicing or praying for someone you know or have journeyed a little with, about what information you know ‘in the natural.’


4. A safe environment for the prophetic gift to operate is one in which there is prophetic accountability and also, appropriate guidelines and protocols in place. [1] There are important points about how to create a safe environment for personal prophecy here.


More Important Considerations and Guidelines

  • Be wise about what you share, and how you share it. If the knowledge is sensitive, privacy may be needed. If a word of knowledge relates to an area that may be painful to the person, take a gentle approach.
  • Do not share the insight unless you can share God’s encouragement alongside it.
  • If you recognise that you carry a judgment (a negative or critical opinion) in relation to the knowledge you perceive, step back and pray. Let the Holy Spirit minister freedom to you, before you minister prophetically to the other person.
  • Having an insight of knowledge (just as with discernment) does not always mean that you must immediately share what you perceive. Take the way of wisdom and love—if you are not sure, take it to a leader/pastor first rather than the person. An important part of growing in prophetic ministry is to learn the discipline of holding back when you have an insight from God, but the timing is not right.

Notes:

[1] See the articles The Power of Prophetic Accountability and Prophetic Ministry in Church Life: Why Have Guidelines?


Growing in the Prophetic Seminar (Downloadable) – 25% off for the next 2 weeks only

Would you like training in how to use and develop your prophetic gift?
Are you called to prophetic ministry or office?

Whether you are just beginning in prophecy, or maturing in your gift and ministry, this teaching series will inspire and equip you to go to the next level.

David_HelenOur ‘Growing in the Prophetic’ seminar is now available for download and features:

  • 13 Sessions on MP3 with Helen Calder and David McCracken
  • Full student notes in PDF format
  • BONUS eBook “Grow Your Prophetic and Prayer Gifts” by Helen Calder

For more information and a list of teaching topics, click here to view the downloadable Growing in the Prophetic course.

Note: All transactions are secure using PayPal and we do not pass your information on to third parties. Prices are listed in Australian dollars – our store will convert to your currency.


© 2015 Helen Calder Enliven Blog – Prophetic Teaching

On team with David McCracken Ministries: Prophetic Ministry That Empowers The Church

Did you receive this from a friend? Read more from Enliven Blog or sign to receive our weekly prophetic teaching updates at http://enlivenpublishing.com/blog

Break Out of Limitations and Grow Your Prophetic Gift

Grow Your Prophetic GiftHave you ever thought, ‘I would love to grow my spiritual gift of prophecy, or discernment, but I don’t have the opportunities?’

Or—have you ever felt that another person is holding you back from your ministry call? Perhaps you have been frustrated because a leader is not recognising your gift, or you don’t have a mentor to help you grow.

If you can relate to that, I have a significant word for you today.


“That Tree used to be a Bonsai”

One day we were visiting the home of a pastor and admiring his garden. Near his driveway was a magnificent, spreading tree. He said that one day that tree would grow so large that its foliage would hang over the driveway.

Then, he said an amazing thing: “That tree used to be a bonsai.”

In the Japanese art of bonsai, the small size of a container restricts the growth of a tree—it is a miniature of what it could be. The potential and the DNA exists for growth, but enlargement does not take place.


Why is my Prophetic Gift not Growing?

It is common for prophetic people with a ministry call to point to situations or people outside of ourselves as the reason for why we are not growing our gift, or progressing in our call the way we would like to. These include:

  • Our church environment
  • A pastor or leader
  • A spouse or family member
  • Lack of opportunities being given by others
  • Lack of available mentors

And so the list goes on, as we point to some factor that we believe is limiting us and preventing us moving forward.

We see that factor as the ‘bonsai container’ that is stopping our growth. And so, we remain stuck.

If you can relate to that, I want to encourage you today to take a shift of perspective.

Is it possible that the real limitation is actually in your own thinking? That the mindset—that someone or something external to you is holding back your gift and ministry—is actually what is disempowering you?

I believe that Father is encouraging someone today:

In spite of what it may seem, no one can hold you back. No external environment can hold you back; no spouse, family member, leader or pastor can hold you back. You have the sovereignty and faithfulness of God on your side.

You do not need to be a victim. You do not need to remain in a stuck cycle. The only one who can neglect or limit your gift is you.


Fan into Flame the Gift of God

The truth is that we personally have been given the responsibility and the ability by God to steward our gift and calling:

  • ‘Do not neglect your gift, which was given you through prophecy when the body of elders laid their hands on you. Be diligent in these matters; give yourself wholly to them, so that everyone may see your progress.’ (1 Tim 4:14-15)
  • ‘For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands. For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.’ (2 Tim 1:6-7)

Paul holds Timothy personally responsible for the growth and stewardship of his gifts and ministry.

So today, decide to take ownership for the growth and development of your prophetic gift and you will be amazed at what takes place.


Prophets and Teachers

At a recent David McCracken Ministries team meeting, we sat around our table discussing the meaning of ‘Prophet’, studying Ephesians 4, and encouraging each other to grow further in our prophetic ministry.

I came away from that meeting feeling stretched, challenged and honoured. What a privilege to sit around the table with prophets and teachers who are spiritual family to me. What a privilege to minister on this team. I feel humbled and grateful.

Years ago, such an opportunity was only a dream. God in His grace has enabled me to make important choices along the way:

  • To honour leaders, especially through the tough times
  • To submit to the process of adjustment and repentance when necessary
  • To serve in the small opportunities
  • To embrace the seasons of life
  • To step out of my comfort zone (obedience) when a door has opened up
  • To decide—over and over—to steward the gifts God has given to me

I have not always got this right, but thank God He has enabled me to get up again after falling over. And these are choices that I must continue to make every day. Which are you currently faced with?


The Parable of the Talents—and Spiritual Gifts

Jesus told the story of a man who went on a journey and left his riches with others to invest. We call it ‘the parable of the talents’. (Matt 25:14-30) To one he gave five talents, to another two and to another one.

The responsibility to invest and grow that talent was left to the individual. And when he came back, the master looked to each person for the return on his investment.

The person to whom he gave one, failed to invest that talent, blaming a factor outside of himself—the temperament of his master—for his failure to multiply what had been given to him.

Those who were faithful to invest and grow the portion they were given, received more.

Today, decide that you are going to be like Timothy—you are going to fan into flame the gift that God has given to you. Nothing, and no one, can hold you back.


Which external factor have you been concerned has been holding you back in growing your gift? How has this article encouraged you to have a change of perspective? Leave a message in the comments section, on Facebook or on Instagram. If the blog comments box is not visible, click on this link and scroll down.


Related Posts

How to Develop Your Prophetic Gift: Where to Begin

6 Reasons Why You Should Develop Your Prophetic Gift


Growing in the Prophetic

Would you like training in how to develop and use your prophetic gift? Are you called to prophetic ministry or office? Our ‘Growing in the Prophetic’ seminar is now available for download and features:

  • 13 Sessions on MP3 with Helen Calder and David McCracken
  • Full student notes
  • BONUS eBook “Grow Your Prophetic and Prayer Gifts” by Helen Calder

For more information, click here to view the downloadable Growing in the Prophetic course or here to view the USB and other available eBooks. Note: listed prices are in Australian dollars.


© Helen Calder Enliven Blog – Prophetic Teaching

On team with David McCracken Ministries: Prophetic Ministry That Empowers The Church

Did you receive this from a friend? Read more from Enliven Blog or sign to receive our weekly prophetic teaching updates at http://enlivenpublishing.com/blog

Growing in Prophecy: The Power of a Pause

When I was a child, my Dad was a photography enthusiast. Sometimes he allowed me to watch him at work in his darkroom, where he created prints and enlargements.

After exposing the photographic paper to an image using a negative, Dad placed the blank page into a tray of developing solution. I watched, transfixed, as an image miraculously appeared while he gently agitated the tray before passing the newly formed photo into the next solution. [1]

The trick of the developing solution was in applying the right time, along with continuous motion, for the picture to fully emerge.

It reminds me of the process of receiving a prophetic insight, or revelation, from the Holy Spirit.

Most of the time we will receive more, and the prophetic insight will become clearer, as we pause in God’s Presence.


4 Things to Keep in Mind as you Grow in Prophecy

 

1. An Initial Revelation from the Holy Spirit may be Simple

Most often, when the Holy Spirit speaks, He communicates to through a light impression. It may come through a Scripture verse coming to mind, or being highlighted as you read the Bible. It may be a fleeting picture, a word, idea or a feeling.

People often tell me that they have trouble hearing from God and receiving prophetic revelation. As you grow in your prophetic gift, don’t wait for something complicated! Embrace that simple insight.

In Acts 13, we read of how the leaders at Antioch received a simple instruction from the Holy Spirit—‘Set aside Saul and Barnabas for the work I have called them to.’ It was only a sentence—and yet responding to that word from God resulted in the launch of the Apostle Paul’s missionary journeys.

One word, one impression from God is powerful.


2. There is Power in Pausing and Asking for More

Take a simple insight that you receive from the Holy Spirit and pause. Our God is a relational God and He loves conversing and interacting with us. Taking time with the Holy Spirit may mean simply waiting, focused, upon Him along with the prophetic insight He is giving to you.

Ask questions—seek Him for more information about it.

Allow time to ‘develop’ a picture or thought He gives to you. It may become clearer. Like adjusting the focus on a camera, you may see or receive more.

If not, that’s OK too. Perhaps in that simple first impression you have all you need to know.

The word of the Lord came to me: “What do you see, Jeremiah?”
“I see the branch of an almond tree,” I replied.
The Lord said to me, “You have seen correctly, for I am watching to see that my word is fulfilled.”’ (Jer 1:11-12)

Many powerful prophecies in the Bible are within the context of conversation with God, or listening and responding to a flow of instruction. [2] In this chapter we read of simple visions received by Jeremiah that God went on to explain and expand upon.

There is power in listening further to what God has to say.

As we grow and mature in prophecy there may be times—such as in the context of a prophetic presbytery—when there is little time to wait and we must trust in the Holy Spirit to further ‘develop’ the revelation as we are sharing and unfolding it. However this is not the case most of the time when we are waiting on God.


3. Don’t be in a Hurry to Share a Prophetic Insight

One of the misconceptions that those new to prophecy may have is to believe that they must share a word immediately when they receive something from the Holy Spirit. However, our Father does not put us under pressure. Condemnation, or fear of missing the moment or getting it wrong, are not from God’s Spirit and should never be applied to our journey of growing in prophecy.

If the Holy Spirit brings something to mind in a church service, a prayer meeting, or whilst praying for someone, you do not need to share it instantly. And you don’t need to worry about losing the prophetic insight—the Holy Spirit will help you recall to your mind what is of Him. (John 14:26)

Take the pressure off.

As you seek to grow in prophecy, know that the Holy Spirit works in both faith and wisdom, and always in the context of honouring leadership.

Sometimes the wise thing to do is to wait and receive more, especially if the word is unclear, or if it relates to an issue of discernment. [3] Ask yourself, ‘Is this the right time and place?’ If the prophetic word goes beyond general encouragement to something more specific, ask, ‘Is there a leader I should share this with?’

For example, words related to the vision of your church may need special consideration if they go beyond basic encouragement. [4]


4. Some Prophetic Insights Require a Longer Journey

It may take a longer period of time for the fullness of a prophetic revelation to develop. A prophetic dream or personal prophecy can be like this. We may not understand the prophetic insight at the moment it is given. We try to fit the prophetic insight, personal prophecy or dream into what we know in our current context. But it does not fit. The reason for that may be that it may be for a future time.

Sometimes a prophetic insight is an invitation from God to take an extended journey with Him.


Related Article:

Taking the Pressure off When you are Growing in Prophecy


Notes:

[1] The photos pictured are of my younger brother (left) and me, taken by my Dad more than 40 years ago.

[2] E.g. Jer 1; Ezek 37; Dan 10

[3] These articles may be helpful:

[3] See the post, ‘Prophesying About the Future of Your Church.’


Has this message on growing in prophecy encouraged you, or do you have a question, testimony or Scripture to share? Leave a message in the comments section or on Facebook. If the comments box is not visible, click on this link and scroll down.


Resources to Help you Grow Your Prophetic Gifts:

  1. ‘Grow Your Prophetic And Prayer Gifts’ is a high-value e-book specifically written to help you grow in your prophetic gifts – at whatever stage or season you are on the journey.
  2. Our ‘Growing in the Prophetic’ seminar is now available for download and features:
    • 13 Sessions on MP3 with Helen Calder and David McCracken
    • Full student notes
    • BONUS eBook “Grow Your Prophetic and Prayer Gifts” by Helen Calder

For more information, click here to view the downloadable ‘Growing in the Prophetic’ course or here to view the USB and other available eBooks.

Note: prices are in Australian dollars


© Helen Calder Enliven Blog – Prophetic Teaching

On team with David McCracken Ministries: Prophetic Ministry That Empowers The Church

Did you receive this from a friend? Read more from Enliven Blog or sign to receive our weekly prophetic teaching updates at http://enlivenpublishing.com/blog

6 Stages of Growth in Your Prophetic Gift

Stages of Your Prophetic GiftHere in Melbourne, Australia, we are welcoming the first signs of Autumn rain, after several dry months. Growth in our garden—halted due to the extreme Summer heat—is about to explode.

It reminds me of how a refreshing move of the Holy Spirit can bring a change of spiritual season to our lives and ministries.

Whilst we may enjoy a time of refreshing, other Biblical seasons do not appear so pleasant. (Heb 12:11) In His love and tender care, our Father also ordains seasons of pruning, testing, or wilderness times, to grow us in our call, gifts and character.

Spiritual seasons apply to the overall call of God in our lives—and also to the development of individual spiritual gifts, such as prophecy.

6 Stages of Growth in Your Prophetic Gift

In my book, ‘Grow Your Prophetic and Prayer Gifts,’ I identify 6 stages of growth in the development of spiritual gifts. [1] These are:

1. The Beginning Stage

Spiritual gifts are imparted to us at our new birth in Christ. (1 Peter 4:10)

2. The Desiring Stage

We may experience a God-given hunger that leads us, either to an area of ministry where the gift of prophecy can be tested and used, or to further study or training in the use of the prophetic gift. (1 Cor 14:1)

3. The Emerging Stage

There are visible signs that we have a spiritual gift of prophecy, and that it is anointed by God. We are seeing fruit—results that honour God, help people, and build the church. Our spiritual oversight are now acknowledging our gift. (Acts 19:6)

4. The Developing Stage

The growth of our prophetic gift is accelerated as we embrace opportunities such as prophetic training, mentoring, putting prophecy into practice and other forms of learning or study. (1 Tim 4:14-15)

5. The Testing Stage

We undergo a season of trial, or wilderness season, in the area of our giftedness. Our sense of confidence in ourselves is being stripped away but will be replaced by a new sense of dependency upon God. We gain wisdom and humility and are prepared for greater fruitfulness in prophetic ministry. (Acts 9:28-30)

6. The Maturing Stage

Having grown in wisdom as well as our gift, we are experiencing fruitfulness in the use of our spiritual gift of prophecy and may have the opportunity to lead, encourage or invest (reproduce) in others who are growing in the same area of ministry. (1 Cor 14:20)

Although I have placed these stages in order for the convenience of communication, God may lead us through them multiple times, as we mature in our gifts and calling. [2]


4 Benefits of Understanding the Growth Stage of Your Prophetic Gift

There are several advantages to being aware of which stage we are experiencing in our prophetic gift and ministry call:

1. We can make the most of our Current Season

For example, in a ‘desiring’ phase, we can overcome discouragement that a prophetic gift has not yet manifested or been acknowledged and continue to respond to the hunger that Holy Spirit has placed within us.

2. We can see the Bigger Picture

We can appreciate God’s faithfulness as we can look back at the journey that we have been on. This can be especially encouraging if we are undergoing a ‘testing’ season.

3. We can Break through Barriers

In a ‘testing’ season, for example, we realise that our response and the condition of our heart is of vital importance to the fulfilment of God’s call upon our lives—and can choose to respond well. We can also identify when the enemy’s strategy is to keep us stuck in a wilderness time and take steps to break free.

In an ‘emerging’ season, we can be encouraged to steward the gift God has given to us by not taking it for granted—and investing in further training and development.

4. We can lift the Ceiling on our Prophetic Gift

Understanding the stages of growth in our gift of prophecy can help us grow even further, for each stage contains ongoing lessons.

We can prayerfully identify which attributes of each season that we should revisit on an ongoing basis. For example, God may prompt us to:

  • Stir up desire for a gift or ministry (desiring stage),
  • Step out and try new things (emerging stage)
  • Continue to seek opportunities for training and development (developing stage), and
  • Continue to respond well to trials or hurts as they occur (testing stage)

Notes

[1]Grow Your Prophetic And Prayer Gifts is written to help you grow in your prophetic gifts and break through stuck places – at whatever stage or season you are on the journey. Visit our eStore for this eBook and more resources to empower you in your gifts and ministry, or our Prophetic Training page to learn about prophetic training opportunities with David McCracken and Helen Calder.

[2] Can you tell which season you may be experiencing? For a more comprehensive checklist of signs related to each season, see this article:

How to Develop Your Prophetic Gift by Understanding Your Season


Related Posts:

6 Reasons Why You Should Develop Your Prophetic Gift

Going Through a Testing Season in Your Spiritual Gifts (What is God Doing?)

11 Signs that Your Prophetic Gift is Being Held Back

Break Out and Grow Your Prophetic Gift: The Parable of the Bonsai


Have you noticed stages of growth in relation to your prophetic gift or ministry call? Do you have a story to share, insights or questions on this subject? I would love to hear from you. Leave a message in the comments section. If the comments box is not visible, click on this link and scroll down.


© Helen Calder Enliven Blog – Prophetic Teaching

On team with David McCracken Ministries: Prophetic Ministry That Empowers The Church

Did you receive this from a friend? Read more from Enliven Blog or subscribe to receive our weekly prophetic teaching updates at http://enlivenpublishing.com/blog