Ministry Update – One
Hindsight is best when life is beautiful
The last month of my life has felt completely new and invigorating. The other day I found myself writing this in my journal:
For the first time in my life I can say that I am living all-out for the Kingdom of God. I have held nothing back, although I know there is more to give. I’m sure Holy Spirit is more than able to reveal it.
I am doing the Kingdom. I really am. That is so exciting!
I think there is something in each of us that is discontent with our lives as long as we aren’t quite doing what we were created to do. We often settle for less than great because… well, I think mostly because no one has given us permission to do the crazy things that we would like to do! A good friend of mine pointed that out to me a while back, and I think it so true.
I want to tell you my story. If you have been following my blog so far this year you have heard a bit of it. This summer has been a Joshua-entering-the-promised-land sort of time, including all the uncertainty and feeling overwhelmed by the battles ahead.
Above all, you must live as citizens of heaven,
conducting yourselves in a manner worthy of the Good News about Christ.
To get you up to speed, a year ago I quit my job and started toward full-time ministry. I tore into my house to remodel it into a place of ministry (still quite in-process). This summer I got severely involve in an aspect of my life that I have fallen in love with. Spiritual fatherhood. Quite appropriate as we’ve got a little one in the oven right now. I started a discipleship program at my church called Immerse. A lot of new things for me with this genesis. I discipled four men through the summer. I designed a logo. I built a webpage for the program (click here to see). I designed and printed brochures, business cards and signs. I discovered a love for teaching and a love for helping others walk through their unique spiritual journey.
Immerse has grown. We have had a few amazing leaders join us and the guys and gals that were discipled this summer are now discipling their own crew. Word is getting out that the Spirit is at work, people are discovering their value and calling, and that spiritual growth/empowerment is really happening.
I spent a week up at Camp Nathanael as a counselor. My brother, Daniel, was in my cabin and my brother Andrew was working on the dish crew that week. We all rocked it! I learned how to play octa-ball and had some great mentorship opportunity with a few of the other counselors. I again got to teach, this time for morning devotions to the staff and shared a story that I wrote inspired by Pastor Peter’s sermon on blood covenants. (See if you recognize the sleeping guy in the the intro video!)
Finally, in this last month and a week I have done roughly 160 hours of prayer counseling and Michelle has done around 80. For the first time ever, I can say that I’m doing vocational ministry full time for a whole month! Wow. Totally excited, totally exhausted. One of the ways that we do Prayer Resolution is when someone can take off two weeks to come and do a “blitz”. That is, eight hours a day, five days a week for two weeks straight. Let me tell you, everyone is exhausted by the end, but everyone is also encouraged and uplifted after seeing our heavenly Father doing such and amazing work in someone’s life in such a short period of time. This is the core of the ministry that Michelle and I are seeking to do in this new life of faith. It is an amazing thing to watch God do the miraculous in people’s lives.
Man, I’ve been busy this summer (I didn’t mention yet all the construction I’ve been doing on the house!). But, at the same time, I can’t think of a time in my life where I have felt so fulfilled and purposeful. My life is so good and I am so blessed! It’s kind of weird, because I have so much stress and uncertainty about the future, our finances, our remodeling, and our coming baby, but none of that carries any weights in the light of the fact that the Kingdom of God is advancing and people are seeing the powerful arm of God at work in their life. If you are feeling a bit “off” in your life, it may be that God is putting a holy discontentment in you until you step out of your comfort zone and start trusting Him to accomplish great and amazing things through you. Take my word for it, jumping off the cliff is a great ride.
I would love to grab coffee with you. Please feel free to find either one of us on Facebook, e-mail us, or call us.
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Nathan & Michelle Banker
1236 Upton Ave N
Minneapolis, MN 55411