We at Assignments International are committed to welcoming and walking alongside others who are “On Assignment,” or who are seeking their assignments.
PRELIMINARY STEPS TO RECEIVING OUR ASSIGNMENTS:
I have broken down the process of receiving assignments onto four steps, somewhat but not completely linear in progression. They include 1) Lordship, 2) Purification, 3) Intimacy with God, and 4) Receiving His Assignments.
1) Lordship occurs when we acknowledge the triune God is the source of our life and our purpose. When we walk with Jesus and let him be Lord, there is a constant willingness to yield our self will over to His will. There are at least three main steps involved in Lordship: There is what I would call “first intent.” This is an initial all out response to follow Christ and make him Lord. The next two steps involve a cycle that circles down and up, while the whole circle moves closer toward Him each time.
Step two is what I would call “the breaking of our will,” or “brokenness,” which includes the realization of what it means to have Christ’s will in direct conflict with something that is important to us. Every mature Christian can identify the one or two times when their self-controlled ambitions first came crashing down. The crashing down of one’s expectations may precede or co-inside with one’s “first intent” to make Christ Lord, or it may come weeks or years after one’s initial intent to follow Him. In any case, the breaking of the will, a necessary precursor to maturity in the Christian life. It is one of the moments when one realizes in their heart and true experience that there is in fact a God, and he or she is not Him.
The third aspect of Lordship may or may not come with or immediately after the breaking, in fact a person may lie long within the broken state. This will largely depend on the attitude and flexibility of the believer toward God and life. The step which is necessary to get out of a broken state is what I will call “reconnection.” When someone’s will is broken, whether incurred by a human or by nature, a number of scenarios can occur. One could choose to believe there is no God, or conclude that God cares less about them than others; One could leave God entirely out of the picture and count Him as irrelevant, and directly blame people or themselves for what occurred; or One could choose to believe that God exists and loves them, but simply relinquish the need to understand the reason why what happened occurred. Regardless, there is usually a hurtful, rebellious, or depressed period involved with the struggle. Although pain and severity of being broken varies from believer to believer, there must be a reconnection stage in order to fulfill the cycle and bring about further maturity in faith. One may choose to remain at the bottom of the cycle, living at the brunt of brokenness, for years, decades or even a life time, but there is always a choice that God presents to reconnect with Him. It is this reconnection that empowers the Assignment.
2) If one is actively involved in the brokenness-reconnection cycle, one can consider another step, and this involves what I will label as “purification.” This would be similar to what theologians may call the sanctification process, however our focus is not so much on the practitioner or believer, but rather on the result. The product of purification should be one that results in the adjusting of the believer’s lifestyle to be able to respond quickly and accurately when God speaks or drops an assignment on us. As Lordship permeates our relationships, our personal goals, our work, our families, and our finances, the brokenness-reconnection cycle must continually be applied on a micro level. As a believer matures, they can come into alignment with God so that they don’t need to be broken so much in order to live out his purposes for their lives. The Holy Spirit can then cause a person to initiate risk instead of passively wait to be broken. Without having to reach the pit of brokenness, reconnection can and will become less painful. A kind of receiving from the Holy Spirit takes place, thus forming a more stable cycle or give-and-take rotation with God, as one grows in intimacy with Him.
3) Learning to walk in intimacy with Jesus, is a mature stage of development when one can accomplish a task, not for the sake of achievement, self-promotion, finishing a work (accomplishment), building up ones experience or spiritual resume, or feeling good about oneself; but for the sake of walking in closeness with God, and doing something with Him with no need for a clear result or consequence. The biblical story of Jonah describes this struggle which Jonah discovered at the end of his assignment.
The name of the game is intimacy. God not only knows and loves us, He wants to be known by us and wants to walk together with us. When we hunger for His Presence, there is a magic intimacy that pops out of His written and prophetic Word to us. We can receive His revelations, His supernatural gifts, His natural earthly gifts. We can be to Him a people who knows Him intimately and responds to His desires. When we discover his purposes and align with him this way, there is a kind of magical synergy as we do God’s work on assignment. There is nothing more thrilling.
4) We go on assignment not because it will get us anywhere or do anything for us personally. We go simply because God asked us. I was told by the Holy Spirit to start a new business in a local neighborhood. It made some sense to me, but if the purpose for business was making money, this failed miserably. I spent a lot of time waiting for the local government to approve it, and meanwhile tied up my money with a contractor, and tied up my time hiring personnel which in the end it never worked out. Everyone I knew including myself was so wrapped up in the result that it was a huge disappointment when city hall kept prolonging the process, leading me to pull out of the project. Yet in the big picture the name of this part of the game was obedience. Two things could have happened. 1) I could have heard God wrongly, meaning either I did not know the voice of God, or 2) God told me something that was careless and not for my best interest. Since God’s character is not this way, most people would naturally guess I had heard a voice in my head that was not God’s. However there is a third option: 3) God asked me to do something that had no obvious positive result except to draw me closer in this long process of walking together. This would make no sense from a product-oriented society, but from a relational orientation, it was completely fine. I had to let it go in spite of the financial and temporal loss.
I am aware that others have lost far more than I have, but the result is always more of Him. If this is our perspective, we can have a mature give-and-take relationship with God. We don’t always need to be like the baby who is asking Father to meet all of our needs and wail when we don’t get them. We can also meet Father’s need for intimate relationship with us.
I don’t want to disrespect or make light of the horrific pain and loss believers have gone through when they are broken, but we really do ourselves a big disservice and increase the crisis when we begin to doubt the voice we have come to know as God’s, just because we do not have a happy or immediate positive result.
Hearing God may seem to some like a guessing game but it really is not and cannot be one, in order for a person to move forward in faith. God is a communicator, and wants to be heard. Are we who were made in His image any different? God is not a deceiver with the intent of being a ventriloquist. If I am listening, His voice will be recognizable each time. The enemy does deceive, but he and his forces cannot imitate God’s voice and his fruit in his entirety. God will always reward the faithful with revealing His heart. When his heart is revealed, it becomes harder and harder to be deceived by the enemy, and more and more obvious when He is speaking.
We at Assignments International are committed to welcoming and walking alongside others who are “On Assignment,” or who are seeking their assignment.
What is Your Assignment?
Have you done all you can but still feel stuck and unable to unlock the next steps in your life? We have designed a half day and a full day session to help you unpack your life. We incorporate some tools you may already be familiar with, like Strength Finders, Spiritual Gifts tests, Redemptive Gifts tools, but find that the real discernment comes when we hear your story and unpack the deposits that are hidden.
Fill out the form below for an inquiry to see if a half day or a full day session may be the right next step for you. We operate on a donation basis with suggested donation of $300 for a half day (3 hours) and $450 for a full day (6 hours). We will reply back to you within a few days to see if we can set up an appointment with you in person or over Skype.