...pray for us that the message of the Lord may spread rapidly and be honored...2 Thessalonians 3:1
Every year since becoming the Network Lead Pastor, I have specifically prayed for a theme word and scripture to be an anchor for the year. Through prayer, contemplation, and conversations with those closest to me, the Lord has faithfully provided a word to rally around. These themes have always provided clarity for me personally and unity for our Network efforts.
I am excited to share that 2023 is no exception. The Theme I feel the Lord has for us as a Network this year is Accelerate. As soon as I heard the word in mid-2022, I sensed in my heart it was to be our rallying word for 2023. ACCELERATE!
In recent years there has been a deceleration or decline in the momentum of many ministries across our Network. Caused by the interruptions and distractions of a pandemic, many have been hit hard by discouragement, disappointment, and decline. They have become common themes. However, I am convinced that God wants to counter the frustration and uncertainty by rallying and raising His Church in Oregon with power and revival. He is calling us to rise with confidence and courage. I believe the Holy Spirit wants to accelerate our vision and pace and take back what the enemy has tried to steal.
Come quickly, all you nations everywhere. Gather together in the valley. And now, O Lord, call out your warriors.Joel 3:11
Accelerate implies the increase in speed and counters reluctance and faltering in our motion. In a practical sense, acceleration implies us tuning out distractions and quickly responding to God’s directions. It is picking up the pace and moving with more intention and focus.
...let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith.Hebrews 12:1-2
I believe this is the word for us in 2023. I am convinced it will usher in a fresh move of the Holy Spirit in our ministries and the impact our local church and ministries will make in the coming year. Please don’t coast through another year, but as one of my mentors would often say, “Go for God!”
So the word of God spread. The number of discples in Jerusalem increased rapidly...Acts 6:7