Word of Encouragement Before Pentecost: How a Burning Heart Sets the World on Fire

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Amy Sutherland

Clear vision and knowing your assignment make all the difference when given a weighty commission. Yet what is essential for completion, especially for longer-term and far-reaching assignments, is a passionate heart.

It is the fire surrounded by purpose that causes one to blaze ahead to the finish line.

In the life of every believer is the core mission statement named the Great Commission, and we were given the Holy Spirit to help us fulfill it. In the Gospel of Matthew, the final words recorded by Jesus are the first introduction to this commission:

“Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed and made appointment with them. And when they saw Him, they fell down and worshiped Him; but some doubted. Jesus approached and, breaking the silence, said to them, All authority (all power of rule) in heaven and on earth has been given to Me. Go then and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them into the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe everything that I have commanded you, and behold, I am with you all the days (perpetually, uniformly, and on every occasion), to the [very] close and consummation of the age. Amen (so let it be)” (Matt. 28:16-20, AMPC).

In the Gospel of Mark we have an even more detailed account of the commission:

“Later, Jesus appeared to the eleven [disciples] themselves as they were reclining at the table; and He called them to account for their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they had not believed those who had seen Him after He had risen [from death]. And He said to them, ‘Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation. He who has believed [in Me] and has been baptized will be saved [from the penalty of God’s wrath and judgment]; but he who has not believed will be condemned. These signs will accompany those who have believed: in My name they will cast out demons, they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up serpents, and if they drink anything deadly, it will not hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will get well.’ So then, when the Lord Jesus had spoken to them, He was taken up into heaven and sat down at the right hand of God. And they went out and preached everywhere, while the Lord was working with them and confirming the word by the signs that followed” (Mark 16:14-20, AMP).

I believe if we are honest, many Christians leave the vision of the Great Commission up to evangelists, their pastors, other fivefold ministers or even other leaders. They may wonder, “How can my life reach the world?” Yet truthfully, the vision to fulfill this command can seem overwhelming to anyone regardless of title.

These leaders may be wondering the same: How do I lead others in reaching the world? In 2009 and 2010, I had the opportunity to spend six months in Africa. The first three months, I was attending Iris Harvest School of Missions in Mozambique, serving with Heidi Baker’s ministry. I had so much anticipation in going to the school; I desired to go grow deeper in my relationship with the Lord, though also knowing the ministry operated in miracles, signs and wonders.

I could not help but dream about what I would experience! I did see healing, I did see miracles, but most experiences did not happen as I imagined. It wasn’t bad, just different.

The Lord spoke to me very clearly while I was there, and one word that has followed me since was, “Amy, the greatest miracle is the miracle of the transformed heart.” Above kingdom affairs and the supernatural life, He was setting things in order that are connected to the center of my calling. And really, this is for every believer, as the first commandment gives mention of this divine order: “You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and mind and with all your soul and with all your strength [your entire being]” (Deut. 6:5, AMP).

We need wholeness of heart to love well; to love God, then ourselves, our family and our neighbors. Physical healing is beautiful, biblical and 100% what the Lord longs to give us, but it does not usurp the healing of the heart. What good is a physical healing if the heart from which we live is unwhole?

“Keep and guard your heart with all vigilance and above all that you guard, for out of it flow the springs of life” (Prov. 4:23, AMP).

One of Mama Heidi’s main messages was “stopping for the one.” The simplicity of the gospel is loving the one in front of you. I loved that the ministry was so free that it encouraged us to be missionaries wherever the Holy Spirit was leading us; from the homemaker to the business CEO and all in between, we are the missionary in the field wherever the Lord has called us — inside the walls of the church or outside, whether on foreign or domestic soil. While I had already held fast to this truth in my heart, it was liberating to be part of a ministry that empowered the body of Christ in this way.

For the rest of this article, visit ablazeglobalproductions.com. {eoa}

Amy Sutherland, the founder of Ablaze Global Productions, a ministry-production company formed from her dual call to minister to the church and the unreached around the globe, is based in Atlanta. Investing years in ministry and the entertainment industry, she has had the opportunity to develop her giftings in a unique way for such a time as this. From working as an award-winning actress and producer to speaking and ministering prophetically worldwide, she desires to awaken and make ready a fiery bride for her King. Amy serves the body of Christ globally with prophetic words, insights, training and encouragement, though she specifically ministers to leaders. Amy is a graduate of Marilyn Hickey Bible College and Harvest Missions School — Iris Ministries Africa. Amy, like a “Samuel,” has always remembered knowing the voice of Lord. From this place of responsibility, Amy’s deepest desire is to make His truths known, connecting a people back to their Creator — knowing Him as lover, Savior and friend.

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