As a prophetic ministry, our core values include accountability, honouring leadership and local church. These are things that I emphasise when I teach about developing and activating prophetic gifts. 
I sometimes receive questions from readers who do not have church leaders or mentors who can help them grow in their prophetic gifts.
Some reasons for this may include:
- They are physically isolated in terms of location
- Their church lacks expertise in the area of prophetic ministry (this can be due to size or emphasis)
- The church is conservative and the leadership does not believe in—or make room for—prophetic ministry
- A prophetic mentor or leader is not available
- They feel hurt or misunderstood in church life in relation to their prophetic gifts
Struggling Without Prophetic Leadership? These Tips may Help
I will cover the aspect about being hurt at the end of this post. But first, some starter tips for those of you who do not have prophetic leadership for practical reasons, such as those I have outlined above:
Feedback and Fruit
Being unable to find a mentor or leader to help you in your prophetic journey is common to a lot of people. Whilst you continue to pray about and be open to receiving mentoring, feedback is important to helping you develop your gift.
When you share a thought, scripture or prayer that is of God, people will say things like ‘that was meaningful…spot on…thank you that really touched me…I feel encouraged, and so on.’ Don’t be afraid to ask if an insight, scripture or prayer you have shared is helpful. Even negative feedback will help sharpen your ability to hear accurately from God.
When you share a prophetic insight, be aware of the fruit (outcome). A word that is from the Holy Spirit and shared in a timely way should bear good fruit that is consistent with the New Testament purpose of prophecy, to ‘lift up, build up, and cheer up.’ (1 Cor 14:3) There may be an occasional circumstance in which someone does not respond well to an insight from God, but if that is happening consistently, there is likely to be something in your approach that needs adjusting. Remember always to share your insights in a loving and natural way.
When Prophecy isn’t Recognised
If you are in a church where prophecy is not recognised, offer what you hear from God in the form of general encouragement, scriptures and prayer. Depending on the culture of your church, you may be able to share that you have been praying and a certain thought or scripture came to mind, or that you believe God is saying something.
The Holy Spirit is not limited by our terminology and it is not necessary to always use the term ‘prophecy.’ The key is to be sensitive and loving and to keep it simple.
Honour and Accountability is Always Relevant
Focus on your intimate relationship with God, but be wary of elevating revelation that you receive from the Holy Spirit above leadership, even when your leaders do not expressly support prophecy. Those in whom God has invested a gift of leadership have good instincts when it comes to His direction and timing.
Remember, your church leader may not understand prophetic ministry, but can still hear from God.
Honouring God-given leadership, regardless of the form it takes, is still the best way to grow our prophetic gifts. Sometimes it is our own pride that gets in the way of us receiving from a leader who does not have the same spiritual gift that we do.
Exceptions—Yes of Course!
Every situation is different and while the above suggestions may be a general help, your gift, maturity, church and leadership will be unique to you. During the next few days, I will endeavour to answer questions that are left in the comments section of this post.
Enliven Blog is a teaching resource designed to help and encourage Christians who are developing and operating in the gift of prophecy. In addition to the above information, the following articles cover the topic of developing your prophetic gift:
There are many ministries on the Internet, but be very careful about who you learn from. Avoid those who make excessive promises to turn you into a ‘fivefold minister’ or who freely offer personal prophecy without accountability.
When Hurt or Misunderstanding in Church Affects Your Prophetic Gift
If your sense of isolation and lack of leadership support is not circumstantial, but due to relational problems or being hurt, following are two articles that may help:
- Break Free Of Hurts That Are Blocking Your Prophetic Gift
- Why is my Spiritual Gift or Ministry not Being Released?
I wrote the book, ‘Prophetic People In A Changing Church‘ from my own experiences with hurt in church life.
 I am on the ministry team at David McCracken Ministries, which is based in Melbourne, Australia.
© Helen Calder Enliven Blog – Prophetic Teaching