Author: Dennis Muse

42110Attended the Exponential 2010 Church Planting Conference via the Webcast of it from Orlando FL, heard a lot of good things from some great pastors I follow like Francis Chan, Matt Chandler, Charles Lee, Ed Stetzer .

Efrem Smith brought down the house, he was amazing, first time I heard him speak, will not be the last time.

Thought I’d post my notes from the speakers.

Here are some of my favorite quotes from today that I tweeted out to my followers:


  • “No matter how small your church is you’re not too small to be a vehicle of compassion, mercy and justice to ur community.”
  • You must risk failure to become a stake holder in the outcome. Alan Hirsch
  • “Go be a Star Trek church planter….. go where no man has gone before” Efrem Smith
  • You can’t love Jesus and ignore or marginalize his Bride. @edstetzer
  • People don’t need to know more to be obedient – they need to be obedient to know more. – @Neil_Cole
  • We need a Kingdom-shaped view of the church, not a church-shaped view of the Kingdom ~ Reggie McNeal
  • Prayer is rebellion against the status quo. “Your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven,”
  • Church marketing is a poor substitute for mission/ the Holy Spirit
  • Plant THE church, not A church. THE church is NOT a destination. Reggie McNeal #exponential
  • We need to be about Kingdom multiplication (more…)

4-20-10I was saddened to learn on Monday as I listen to Francis Chan message from Sunday that he was leaving his church. But only saddened for selfish reasons, Francis is my favorite pastor today and look forward to his podcast every week. I was not surprised at his leaving, because I could tell it was coming, he had been restless in the Lord for about a year now. I was obvious the Lord was prepping him, calling him to move on to a new work.

He will finish out the next two months at his church, then he will leave to go to Asia to serve in ministry, then return to the US to start a new church, most likely he said LA, but still waiting for the Lord to confirm the ware. He is just simply steeping out in faith and take one step at a time as the Lord leads.

He said, “I’m not called to be an awesome mega church pastor, but am called to be a picture of Christ.” He takes inspiration from the story of Vaughan, a youth pastor whose trips to impoverished villages are described by youth as “the closest thing I’ve every experienced to walking with Jesus”. He realized, “my life does not look like Jesus. I can rationalize and justify it, but…”

Chan was a convicting speaker, not least because he was actively living out his message. He is sacrificing the fame, fortune and safety of suburban mega church ministry to follow Jesus. He “wants to go back” to a childlike faith. “If I read the Bible for the first time, I would never conclude I needed to pray some prayer, but I would conclude I need to follow Jesus. If I read the Bible on a desert island, I’d never decide I needed to start a Sunday service, my priority would be discipleship.

In his message to his church announcing his leaving he invited everyone there and hearing his message to join him. Not to come with him into his new calling, but to live a life of faith. To seek out what the Lord would have them do and join the Holy Spirit in the work He has from them. To go on the great adventure with the Holy Spirit, join Jesus in what He is doing.

Here is a video interview with him about it:

Francis Chan is stepping out in faith… from Catalyst on Vimeo.

You can download his message to his church here:

It is message on 4-18-10 – Francis Chan – Surrender

41510Help Victims of Sex Trafficking: What you can do right now! I gave to a new ministry today and am asking others to give to this we worthy ministry. In seeking to fulfill the mission of Jesus to set free the captive, free the oppressed.

HopeChest launches ministry to victims of sex trafficking in Moldova, they have identified several critical projects that need our help right now. Being that ending Human Trafficking is one of my passions, which is why I have my website to call people to take action. HopeChest one of my favorite charities, it works with orphan around the globe and has a new ministry amid at human trafficking called Stop the Secret Moldova.

Currently, they have raised $1000 for these projects and still have quite a ways to go, $24,000 left  so by donating to the Stop the Secret Moldova fund, know you are donating to prevention and restoration organizations in Moldova that desperately need it. Read more here.

There are 4 young women in two different safe houses in Moldova need our help right now. $400/month provides care to one rescued girl for one month. The majority of women and girls that are trafficked come from rural areas. Over 10 percent are under 18 years old, some as young as 12 years old. Traffickers recruit women and girls through different strategies

Any amount, $1, $5, $50…will help provide much needed care for these girls.

Make a gift toward our Stop the Secret Moldova Launch Fund here.

I have asked myself the question many times the last year… “What is the normal Christian reality or “Kingdom reality” that we are to be living?” I do not mean what is the popular belief today, not what is being taught from most pulpits, in most books today, but what scripture says is, that is what God says is. I keep wondering why do I read of one kingdom reality in scriptures, but see most living another reality around me. I mean if you pick up the NT read it and define what the normal life for a Christian. Then I asked myself the question, “Am I living in this reality? Are most believers living in this reality compared to that?

My answer to this question is, No. I believe that for to long we have allowed ourselves to live to far from living in true Kingdom reality. Christians, have taken themselves so far from living in Kingdom reality in order to embrace the American (Christian) Dream instead. What do I mean? I mean that the so-called impossible, miracles, healing, deliverance, preaching the gospel, making disciples, filled with the Holy Spirit and all His powers and gifting’s, etc. Act 1:8 “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you“, John 14:12 “Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do“. How many live in that reality day to day? Seek to live that way?

With the recent outpouring of the Spirit happening at IHOPU and other places I pray it will open eyes to God’s original plan, life for His people, what is to be normal. So many scoff at those whom the Holy Spirit and His gifts are being poured out on in power, at those who are living as the scriptures say we are to, doing what Jesus said we will do when the Spirit comes upon us. While defending a lifestyle not seen anywhere in scripture for a follower of Christ.

I feel as though this is the time for us to re-define what is “normal” Christianity; and lining up with God’s definition of normal. That we read the scriptures and say that is “normal”, the way my life is to look, the way I am to live, read Acts and say that is the way my life is to be, that’s normal Christianity and I want it.

harvesters snack cupsSpent half a day preparing food for the hunger, was at Harvesters for half the day sorting snack cups, about 500 lbs of them. Like pudding, Jello and apple sauce into 18 lbs box’s to be giving to the needy. After finishing that I labels unlabeled #10 cans (that’s restaurant sized ones) of green beans. Then boxed them up to be giving to the needy, about 300 of them. There is always a way to give to, help those in need, even if you do not have money to give, you can give time to feed, help those in need. I gave my time to love others, to help those in need.

On my way to the Freedom Fire Staff prayer meeting I met James, a homeless man who was a war veteran. I was able to give him a little money to buy some food with as well as share God’s love with him. Wanted to do more but he was at the top of freeway ramp and the light turned green and lots of traffic behind me so I had to leave after a short conversation with him. If when we are shot of time as well as money, even a few minuets and a couple of dollars can effect a person life who is in need.

Spent the afternoon with the Freedom Fire staff for prayer, prayed for the staff as well as the inner city poor and the children whom the ministry is working with. Heard lots of praise reports about what God did the last week in the ministry. Many came to Jesus, many lives changed. The new church plant has out grown its space, a much bigger place is needed to accommodate the growing number. Praise God for that.

I was able to love on the staff though encouragement and prayer for them. I was able to love on the people in the inner city by giving time to prayer for them, to love on them via prayer, lifting them up to God, going before God on their behalf, what a privilege.

What a great being to this week, doing acts of love for others, by giving time, money and prayer. Lord I pray the rest of the week is even more filled with acts of love for others.

041210I listen to a reading of a sermon preached by C H Spurgeon from April 27, 1856, over a 150 years ago called ‘Gospel Missions’, in today church lingo it could have been called ‘Gospel Centered Church’ or ‘Missional Church’. It could have, it should be given in the church today. Here we have a sermon on what is at the heart of being a missional church given 150 years ago.

Amazingly Spurgeon hits the key points about what the church is lacking today.

Things he says is missing in the church:

First, We have not apostolic men.
Second, They do not set about their work in an apostolic style.
Third, We do not have apostolic churches.
Fourth, We have not the apostolic influence of the Holy Spirit in the measure that the first church had.

“We have few Apostolic men in these times, preachers of God’s truth.”

“We have not men with Apostolic zeal like Paul, His zeal was so earnest, and so burning. Whether he did eat, or drink, or whatsoever he did, he did all for the glory of his God; he never wasted an hour.”

He went on to say:

“We lack men filled with the Holy Spirit of fire, we have not men with apostolic zeal. Men like Paul who preached the word everywhere, who say “Wow unto me if I preach not the gospel.” You had a convection when you saw him, that he was a man who felt he had a work to do. And must do it and could not contain himself unless he did do it.”

“Oh! if you could have seen Paul preach you would not have gone away as you do today with half a convection that we (pastors) do not mean what we say. I seldom hear a solitary sermon that comes up to the mark in earnest deep passionate longing for the souls of men.”

I gave a big AMEN to all that, and I really loved this:

“Oh had you seen an apostolic church, what a different thing it would have appeared to one of our churches. As different as light and dark. Where is our prayerfulness? Oh, if we prayed as deeply and as earnestly as they did we would have as much success. They broke bread from house to house, they ate their meat with singleness of heart giving glory to God. There was not a member of the church who was half hearted. They gave their heart solely to God.”

Just a few quotes from the sermon, all pastors, all Christians should hear this sermon, it will fire you up if their is even a smoldering amber of the Holy Spirit in you.

Download the sermon here (mp3 22.4 mb).


Today I loved others thus loved Jesus by helping prepare food box’s to be giving to hungry people, therefore fulfilling Mat 25:35.

I spent the first half of the day at Harvesters separating 13,000 lbs of frozen food, mostly meat and sea food then packing all of it up in into box’s with 30 lbs of food to be distributed to the needy.

That is approximately enough food to feed 480 people for a week with meat products.

It was a blessing to spend half a day packing food that I know will go to feed hungry and need people this week. Giving 4 1/2 hours of my time to feed hundreds of people is time well spent.

Just think of the time Americans spend on wasteful things during the week:

American now watches more than 151 hours of TV a month

Time spent playing video games, 18 hours per week

Time spent surfing the internet, 13 hours per week

Just think if Americans even just spent half that time laboring to help those in need, we would have different world indeed.

C. H. Spurgeon, Charles Finney, Smith Wigglesworth, Leonard Ravenhill, George Whitefield, D L Moody, William Carey, George Mueller, John Hyde and Edward Payson.

What do all these men have in common besides God doing some of His greatest works through them, leading revivals, changing nations, and that they all where gifted with power from on high to do great and supernatural works.

In studying their lives I found three things they all had in common, Prayer, Fasting and the Word of God. I found that all of these men prayed for hours a day, they fasted regularly, they all both studied the scriptures daily and preached the word of God. And I found that all of them say those things where the secret to the power of God in their lives, prayer, fasting and the word where at the core of ther life with God. And if you study all the great men of the bible like Elijah, Ezekiel, Daniel and Jesus’ Himself of course, you will find those same three things in their lives also.

I do not mean casual prayer, I mean hours a day of agonizing, passionate prayer, a prayer life measured in hours a day not minutes. Prayer that went form sundown to sun up without ceasing was the norm.

Edward Payson: He was nicknamed “Praying Payson.” It has been said that the wooden floor at his bedside was worn by his knees from his often prevailing.

Leonard Ravenhill: “No man is greater than his prayer life.” and “Pastors who do not spend two hours a day in prayer are not worth a dime a dozen – degrees or no degrees.”

Smith Wigglesworth: Never went more than 15 minutes without reading the word.

George Mueller: “I live in the spirit of prayer; I pray as I walk, when I lie down and when I rise.”

What I found was they spent almost as much time on their face before God praying as they did upright before men it seems. They all studied the scriptures day and night, tell the word of God was flowing through there veins, filling their every thought and conversations with others. And they fasted weekly, and for as long as 40 days on a regular bases, prayer, being in the presence of God was their food. Studying the word of God was their substance.

I think the example set before us by these men is one for all of us to follow, put into practice in our lives.

I do not believe for one minute that it is a coincidence that every great man of God, everyone who has lead a great work of God was a great man of prayer. Men who labored in prayer daily for hours at a time, I believe that is the kind of person God uses. It is only out of daily face to face encounter with God that God’s power and presences flows, the person whom God does His greatest work through.

I for one chouse to follower their lead, and what I believe God wanted me to learn from the last few weeks. So I have made the commitment to become a man of prayer just as all of those I listed above where, to spend no less than two hours a day in deep, prevailing prayer, to be an intercessory, to pray without ceasing.

This is about God changing the way I pray, the how, why and how much daily. This is a whole another level of prayer, way of praying, deeper, more passionate, more spirit centered, more others centered. God is teaching me how to pray all over again, His way. I want to pray as the men I listed prayed, have their prayer life, pray like Jesus prayed. To be contented in another post….

Read the Acts of the Apostles and all you read about is prayer, prayer, prayer. When they had prayed the place was shaken, lives where changed, the power of God was manifested, souls where saved, people healed, the world was turned upside down and the kingdom of Heaven was brought to earth, that is what I want my prayer life to be like.

Acts 6:4, “give yourself continually, persistently to prayer and the Word of God.”

4227708830 8fe594aea2Everyone one likes to quote the verse that says be equally yoked to apply it as to mean only to marry a believer. I believe that it’s covers more than that, I think it goes to the very heart who you are and your life as a follower of Christ. To be equally yoked means you are equal! Not just in your belief in Jesus, but that you are equal in all ways, that you live on the same level of spiritually, on the level of relationship with God. At the same level of service to God.

This is what that means to me, what I have learned from my own life and dating relationships.

1. She loves the word of God: She studies the word daily, I mean studies in depth, not just read a verse or two. I am a lover of Gods word, it is a central pillar in my life, I have studied it diligently from cover topage0 blog entry345 1 cover and know and seek to live by it. So I want a girl who equally loves, studies daily and lives by the word of God. My first clue is simply let me see her bible, it should look like mine, well used, lots of notes, highlights and very worn from all the use. If its clean, pages look new, unless she just bought it, I not interested in her. We are not equal.

4227709130 2c96d81623

2. She is woman of prayer: She must be a prayer warrior, someone who prayer is central to her life, and day. She is always laying hands on others and praying for them, she takes everything to God first in prayer, seeks God face in everything, start and end her day in prayer, she prays without ceasing. Because she seek to both know God intimately and His will for her in all things, and she prays for the nations, the lost with a great passion and burden for them. She measures prayer time in hours not minutes, a day.

3. She must be A woman of worship: And I mean a daily passionate worshiper/lover of God. She worships in song, dancing, jumping for joy, with shouts of joy, raised hands, and on her face. She can be found many days a week at places of worship like the IHOP prayer room in worship and prayer for hours a week. Like the song says “Better is one day in Your courts, Than thousands elsewhere” she know of no better place to be than before the face of God, loving on Him. She like Moses cry’s out daily “I pray You, show me Your glory!” and she will not stop worshiping tell she see His glory, His face and loves on Him. 20 min at church on Sunday sitting in a pew don’t count to her, she must worship God with great passion, daily.

4. She lives on mission: She see herself as a missionary on mission for 3-31-10Jesus, she is busy living for the spreading the gospel, making disciples, baptizing in all the world. She ready to leave in moments notice to go where ever the Lord would send us. She lives to fulfill Mat 28:19, Mark 16:15 and in Act’s 1:8, to live on mission. Her life is about bringing the Kingdom of God to earth. (read do I live on mission here) She leaves her house everyday on mission.

5. She lives to fulfill Matt 25, Isa 1:17, Isaiah & 58:7: She has a heart for the poor and needy, the orphan and widow. To bring justice to the oppressed and to free the prisons. To heal the sick, feed the hungry and cloth the naked. She cares about social justice for the oppressed. She finds ways daily to fulfill those scriptures.

6. She knows and operates in her spiritual gifts: What ever they are, she is using them for the good of the body of Christ, she lives operating in her gifts daily. Uses them to fulfill her calling in Christ. She using them for the spreading of the gospel to the world. I am speaking of the gifts listed in 1 Corinthians 12:8-10, Ephesians 4:7-13 and Romans 12:3-8.

4226948423 42c8e4641e

In summery she must be a true lover of God, a true, passionate worshiper who worships in Spirit, who prays with out ceasing and loves the word of God. Because she is madly in love with Jesus, and God the Father.

I do not believe there is a more beautiful woman than one who is worshiping/loving on God, praying to God, and serving God than like the woman in the photos in this post.

And yes there are such women, I know because I have dated women like this and every week I am surrounded by hundreds of them at the IHOP prayer room. To marry a women who was not like this would be to marry the wrong person, to be unequally yoked for me.

*IHOP is International House of Prayer

092910Got to meet with and pray with Nelson Hopkins Sr. who’s son and nephew were both killed recently. Got lay hands on him and prayer for him. He is a remarkable man of God, he is already part of a ministry that I have been connected with and now he has stated another ministry.

In the mist of his grief and pain he has started an organization called Operation Promise Land, which aims to work in troubled neighborhoods to take back the streets from violent criminals. His aim is to prevent other parents to half to go trough what he has had to, the loss of a child too early, his son was just 17 year old high school junior who had a promising future.

Out of ashes new life has come, the lives that may be saved by his new ministry to take back the inner city neighborhood from the senseless violence that plagues it. Nelson has been in the news a lot with what he is doing, he has stood as a testament to Jesus, God’s grace and mercy in his open sharing of the gospel and God’s love in the mist of his live tragedy.

I can not relate to the level of pain he must be going trough with the lost of his first born child, the anger of such a senseless death of a young life gunned down while walking home from the library. But spending time with him, talking with him and laying hands on him a praying for him, to be able to pore out love upon him, the love of the father for him, to help him bear the burden he is carrying was a blessing for me to get to do.

You can read his story here.