This is #12 in a series of blogs by PJ on the Gifts of the Holy Spirit. It is the second in a mini-series of four blogs on the gift of prophecy (1 Corinthians 12:10).
It is the one that deals with how to learn to prophecy in a church meeting. How can I learn to prophecy in a church meeting?
Step 1: During the week, I ask God to alert me to any prophetic word that he would like me to bring at the Sunday meeting.
Step 2: During the opening song I whisper to God a request that he show me when and how to bring the word he showed me during the week, or if I don’t yet have a word to please give me one that will encourage the people and help bring an immediate sense of God’s presence to the meeting.
Step 3: Now for the important matter of how the content of the word actually comes into our minds. For me it can happen through the following ways:
• A scripture: either a verse will come to my mind, or I will be browsing Psalms (for example) and a verse jumps out at me. I could then turn that verse into a prophecy.
• A line from a song: sometimes a line from a song we are singing makes me want to elaborate on it.
• Another prophetic word by someone else: when someone else brings a word of some sort, that often gets my prophetic juices going and I want to build on that prophecy.
• A picture in my mind: sometimes an image leaps to my mind ‘out of the blue’. When that happens I don’t dismiss it as ‘Satan trying to distract me’, rather I meditate on it for a bit to see if I stumble on a prophetic application for that picture.
• An idea stemming from something I see: in a similar vein, sometimes an object in the building will catch my eye that can activate a prophetic word.
• Common sense: if there is some big and common issue on the go, such as a general election, or it is Easter Sunday, I am especially alert to bring a prophetic word along those lines that will comfort and encourage.
• A prophetic sense: for those who are maturing in their walk with Jesus and who have a maturing leadership or prophetic gift (who may even be on their way to becoming an Ephesians 4 prophet), they increasingly get what we call a prophetic burden about something. This means that as they think and pray about the church and the advance of God’s kingdom, they will develop a sense of God wanting to do X or Y in or through the church, and it will be this theme that forms the content of the prophecy.
These prophecies are usually ‘big ones’ that adjust the emphasis or direction of the church, and need to be thoroughly weighed by the leaders. For example, “I sense that God is wanting to restore healings and signs and wonders to the church, and if you will step out he will honour his word and do the miracles through you…’
Step 4: Then you need to have wisdom to know when and how to bring the word that you have. Usually it is best to tell the leader of the meeting that you have a word along the following lines, and then let him direct you when to bring it. But bring it cheerfully, confidently, and loudly enough for all to hear it. Keep it short, probably between ten seconds and one minute, as anything longer than this is hard for people to stay engaged with.