Posts in VISION

5 Keys To Being Eternally Wealthy

August 8th, 2015 Posted by NOTES, VISION 0 thoughts on “5 Keys To Being Eternally Wealthy”

I came across a very helpful definition of wealth in the book “On the Destiny of Nations: Resolving Our Economic Crisis” by Dennis Peacocke. There is much in this book that is extremely valuable and I highly recommend it. I will give you the five components of wealth Peacocke describes and then I will briefly explain why I believe this is blog worthy.

There are five biblically definable elements of wealth:

1. Relational peace with God

2. Relationships God has given you

3. Revelational Wealth

4. Time

5. Material contentment


Ingratitude is rooted in feelings of lack or scarcity. This is not a healthy heart attitude. When we believe we are without things it is hard to be grateful. Now it is possible to have alot of stuff and still have an ungrateful attitude. Having stuff doesn’t automatically mean you will be grateful for it. Gratitude requires intentionality. When we intentionally remember and are thankful for what we have been given, recognizing the real value of these things we are being grateful.

The power of Dennis Peacocke’s definition of wealth is it refuses to allow us to operate from a paradigm of scarcity. We can’t say, “we don’t have anything” or “we’ve never been given anything”, both statements rooted in scarcity are expressions of ingratitude.

At the top of this list of things that make us wealthy, Peacocke wisely places, “relational peace with God”. I think Elvis Presley once made the statement He would give all the money he had in exchange for a moment of peace. Peace is so valuable. Our peace with God has been made possible only through the shed blood of Jesus Christ. There are many who are not aware of this eternal reality and we must continue to get this message out to them. Many more of us are aware of this reality but have only scratched the surface in our understanding all that Jesus’ blood accomplishes. The Scriptures say, “You were not redeemed with corruptible things …”. It is a powerful insight into the unique nature of the blood of Jesus. It is incorruptible. So much of what we conventionally understand to be wealth is rooted in the pursuit of things that perish over time. Not the blood of Jesus, it is incorruptible, somehow it is not affected by the laws of dissipation that corrode and destroy with time. Our redemption through the blood of Jesus is the greatest treasure, and we often take it for granted. We would be wise to take time to understand all Jesus’ blood accomplishes in the surrendered soul.

Peacocke’s definition of wealth is so powerful because it places us on a powerful foundation of abundance. The more we take time to reflect on these five characteristics the more we realize how much we really have to be grateful for. Gratitude produces joy and joy releases strength. Strength is important. It empowers health in our lives, families and communities.

Finally Peacocke says, “Wealth will pass through death, but riches will not”. “Riches are something we have, wealth is something we are”. We are far wealthier than we realize and have so much to reflect on & be grateful for.

Deuteronomy 8:18
But remember theLord your God, for it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth, and so confirms his covenant, which he swore to your ancestors, as it is today.


Link to referenced book:
On the Destiny of Nations: Resolving Our Economic Crisis, Dennis Peacocke

Dennis Peacocke’s ministry website:

The Elephant Stomp & the Glory Table

November 13th, 2013 Posted by REVIVAL, VISION 1 thought on “The Elephant Stomp & the Glory Table”

elephant rider

Exercise your imagination, it’s a game my daughter and I play where we shut off the TV or Netflix and she picks a picture and we draw it and color it together. That morning my wife’s brother was coming into town for a quick visit, so we were excited to be going to lunch with him. We  had a little time on our hands before we left. Zoe wanted me to draw a family of elephants, in the jungle, drinking water. So I googled a picture of an elephant and did my best to draw the picture to Zoe’s satisfaction. Then we colored it together. When the picture was done, it was time to go. We hopped into the car and went to meet Trey. He had brought a gift with him for Zoe — a beautiful leather shoulder bag; the perfect size for a four year old. Etched into the leather decorating the bag were elephants. Each elephant had its front leg lifted as if it were about to walk, but it was the only leg that was lifted. So it looked more like it was getting ready to stomp. A few minutes later, another of Trey’s friends came to the lunch with another, unexpected gift for Zoe. This time it was a stuffed elephant. There were altogether too many elephants in the room for me not to realize there was something important the Holy Spirit wanted me to learn from elephants …


We’ve been in kind of a holding pattern as a ministry. We closed the door on an incredible chapter of our lives when we shut the doors of Humble Skatepark and Fuel Cafe. These were two avenues the Lord gave us to serve our community for 12 years. But at the start of this year, we knew the season was coming to a close. Our feelings were mixed; excited for what was next, yet sad that something so meaningful to us and others was over. They say grief is proportionate to the value you have placed in something. So we are grieving as well as refocusing. It has been a very valuable time of rest. God has taught us many important things about abiding in Him and remaining in the center of His fullness.

In the midst of the transition we have been asking the question, what next? And what has been very clear is we are to move forward in the “Spirit of the Tabernacle of David”. That may mean as much to you as it did to me! I personally thought the Tabernacle of David was a thing of the past. You may have heard the argument, “that’s Old Covenant, we are in the New – that stuff is no longer important … etc.”  That is all well and good and yes there are critical differences between the Old and New Covenant, but I believe we would be wise to proceed with more caution when abandoning what is revealed in the Old Testament.

In the book of Acts(15:16) the disciples are discussing the issue of how to handle Gentile converts to Christianity. In the midst of the discussion, they quote the prophet Amos(9:11), who had foretold that the Messiah (Jesus) would return with a very specific agenda “to rebuild the Tabernacle of David”. It is a pretty fascinating statement even if it is the only real mention of it in the entire New Testament. If it were really a big deal, wouldn’t more attention be devoted to it? But maybe that’s the wrong assumption.

Could this actually be a profoundly important lens for us through which to engage in mission? What if the insights David had reveal essential heart attitudes that could propel communities towards regional transformation? So as a church we have been asking the Lord to help us understand what it was about David’s Tabernacle that touched Jesus so deeply that he is committed to rebuilding it? What is ‘the Spirit of the Tabernacle of David’?

To understand the Spirit of the Tabernacle of David, I believe it is important to look at the heart of the man. Although David’s Tabernacle is only mentioned one time in the new testament, David and his heart are mentioned more frequently.

David, the Shepherd King of Israel, was a man obsessed with the passion to create a dwelling place in Zion for the Ark or “the resting place of the presence of God” (Psalm 132). His Tabernacle, a tent structure, was different than the Tabernacle of Moses in a number of ways and it was also different from the Temple his son Solomon built. But of the three, the one that Jesus is committed to rebuilding is the Tabernacle of David. That says quite a lot.

So in this season of transition and waiting on the Lord, I have begun to ask him for insight into the Tabernacle of David. Who speaks with authority on this topic in this day?

Like I said, the Tabernacle of David wasn’t really on my radar at all, until recently. I’m not sure that is a good thing for someone who has dedicated their life to mission and evangelism to admit. But I don’t think my lack of understanding is uncommon. This began to change when Sean Feucht and Rick Pino came to Houston for 50 hours of continuous worship. It’s an event they called Fire on the Altar. I met them at my friend Doug Stringer’s office when they were preparing for Fire on the Altar. I have found Sean Feucht, Andy Byrd, Rick Pino, Mike Bickle, Bill Johnson & Ray Hughes to be very helpful in understanding the Spirit of the Tabernacle of David.  I am a rookie and my understanding continues to grow.

So what does this have to do with elephants?

While listening to some of Ray Hughes insights on the sounds and tones of the Tabernacle, he dropped another “elephant into the room”. Bull elephants are capable of releasing a subsonic sound that alerts other elephants in a 30 mile radius. While human’s cannot detect it – other elephants definitely can and when they hear it, they respond. They come to the region where the bull released the sound. When they arrive they gather in a circle and then begin to dance or stomp. As they stomp together in a circle, the ground begins to shake. The reason they gather is that beneath the surface of the ground, where the first elephant released the sound, is a water table. As they continue to stomp, “the water bearing sand soil beneath the hardened crust begins to vibrate and the sand layer liquefies, causing the hardened layer to collapse. The collapse will displace some of the wet sand out and form the banks of a sink hole; and a pond is formed”. It is a process scientist’s and engineer’s call liquefaction. So stomping together long enough the elephants actually tap the water table! I was kind of blown away, and after my day with all Zoe’s elephant gifts – I was much more than intrigued.

I believe liquefaction has a spiritual parallel and may in fact be the best picture of what happens in the spirit when our worship and intercession is released into the atmosphere. Eventually our worship and prayer shakes the sin clogged atmosphere over the region and we begin to access the glory table in the heavens above.

So I believe Ray Hughes insights on this are pretty important. King David was desperate to create a dwelling place for the presence of the Lord in Zion. His first effort had turned out in disaster, but his resolve was fixed and he would not make the same mistake twice. This time he would make sure he did it God’s way. According to the word of Moses, the Ark would be carried on the shoulders of the priests. As the priest’s carried the Ark, David danced the dance of a conquered King and sacrificed. It was a 9 mile dance from the house of Obed-Edom to Jerusalem. Clearly the picture of King David stripped, wearing the linen ephod and dancing with abandon is the picture of a man emptied of self and full of the Spirit of God. David’s heart was undivided. Like the elephants, David was a spiritual giant and he knew he was near a “Glory Table”. So he released the sound of his heart in a dance, unhindered by unbelief or any fear of total  surrender. Incidentally one of the Psalms he sung as he danced was Psalm 24, “Lift up your heads, you gates; lift them up, you ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in”. He was not hindered by the opinion’s of men or what men(even his wife) considered dignified behavior. He stomped because he knew he was near a ‘Glory Table’. And if he could tap into it properly ….

One of Ray’s other fascinating insights comes from the Hebrew word ‘Nehiloth’. It is one of the many Hebrew words in the titles of the psalms. This word is in the title of Psalm 5(and maybe others?). It denotes a song to be played with reed pipes or wind pipes like a flute. It is a pierced reed. Ray explains this ties in with the principle of ‘Hernholtz Resonance’. Resonance is basically how a flute or shofar works. The emptier the vessel, the lower the frequency that is released. So what? Well, Ray explains high frequencies affect our nervous system and lower frequencies affect our circulatory system — basically our heart! Maybe God’s heart is affected the same way when he see’s empty vessels pursuing Him in low tones?

For me there is no clearer picture of an empty vessel resonating the deep sounds of the Spirit of God than David dancing his way towards the gates of Jerusalem. It’s like a shofar. To create a shofar the rams horn is soaked in water and then the cartilage inside the horn is carved out, and a mouth piece is pierced into it. With the cartilage removed the air can freely pass through the horn. The horn must be empty to effectively resonate the wind pushed through it. If it is not emptied of the cartilage it is pretty useless as a horn. David on that day was not ‘full of himself’. He had been emptied and now he resonated with the fullness of the Spirit of God. He was a vessel fully consecrated to God and the sound released through him was deep.

For me all of this ties together in a very important way. Many of us have longed to tap into the ‘Glory Table’ over our cities and regions in an even more substantial way. If you’ve ever made the statement “There must be more”, I believe you are articulating that longing. Perhaps God still has a way to release his glory in unprecedented ways over regions. Perhaps now is the time for the spiritual elephants to gather at the Glory Table in their region and really stomp? Do you hear the sound of any bull elephants?

Subsonic Elephant Communication
play video

Liquefaction in New Zealand Earthquake
play video


I recommend Ray’s teaching on the Tabernacle of David & his teaching on the Warhorse.

Andy Byrd & Sean Feucht’s book, “Fire & Fragrance: From the Great Commandment to the Great Commission”

and Rick Pino has moved to Austin to pioneer a movement in the Spirit of the Tabernacle of David.


The Lens of the Heart

October 19th, 2013 Posted by VISION 0 thoughts on “The Lens of the Heart”


“The unholy soul could not see God even though it were set down in the midst of heaven. But holy souls see God amid the ordinary common places of earth, and find everywhere an open vision” F. B. Meyer, The Secret of Guidance

It is a fact human being’s require lenses to see. Our eye is a lens, a very sophisticated collection of rods and cones without which we could not see the beauty of the world in which we live. There is no physical lens like the human eye. To see the stars in greater detail we need a collection of hi-powered lenses assembled together creating a telescope. To see the detail of the microscopic we need another collection of lenses called a microscope. Whether big or small lenses are critical tools that enhance our ability to see farther or smaller than is possible with the naked eye.

In his sermon on the mount Jesus spent alot of time talking about the importance of the heart and the issues that flow from the heart. In the sermon he also talked about the importance of the eye. Jesus made statements that leave us intrigued like “If the eye is dark how deep is the darkness?” & “How can you see to remove the splinter in your brother’s eye, when you have a plank in your own?”. I have often been puzzled by the deeper significance of what Jesus meant by these statements. They sometimes seemed random, like a collection of random thoughts thrown together. But the more I have meditated on these passages and asked the Holy Spirit for understanding, I am convinced that Jesus is trying to help us see that our heart is another lens. Probably the most important lens. I believe  when Jesus talks about the eye in the sermon on the mount, he is talking about the lens of our heart.  With the lens of the heart we are able to see or perceive the unseen real. Paul prayed for the Ephesian church and asked that the “eyes of their understanding(or heart) would be opened”, so it must be really important that the eyes of our heart are free to see.  How can we make sure the lens of our heart is seeing clearly?

Jesus starts the sermon on the Mount with a collection of critical heart attitudes for those who are part of his kingdom. One of those attitudes says, “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see …. God”. In Luke 11:34, Jesus talking about the eye again said, “if the eye is single”, some translations translate this word single as healthy others as good. It is also possible to translate the word as clear or unclouded. If the eye is single, not divided, clear our vision of the unseen will be unhindered.

Jesus gives us some clear instructions on how we can keep the lens of our heart free from scratches that would hinder our visibility.

“Judge not, and you shall not be judged. Condemn not, and you shall not be condemned. Forgive and you will be forgiven”. Luke 6:37

I have some experience shooting video and recently have begun to shoot video using DSLR cameras which has brought me into a greater appreciation of the many types of lenses available for photography and video. Prime lenses, zoom lenses, wide angle lenses, telephoto lenses. Each provide a unique perspective to the subject being viewed. Now these lenses are expensive, very delicate and are easily scratched and need to be taken care of delicately. I am well aware of the materials that can scratch a lens and I am also aware of which materials are safe to clean the lens with. In Luke 6:37, Jesus helps us see the attitudes that will cloud the lens of our heart and those that will help us walk with clear vision. Judging and condemning rooted in bitter or critical heart attitudes are extremely dangerous to clear heart visibility. These will result in splinter’s or worse plank’s being lodged into our eye, that will greatly obscure our vision. Until these obstructions are removed our perception will be way off. Walking in an attitude of constant forgiveness is the key to healing the lens of the heart. As followers of Christ our heart attitude should be one of constant humility and forgiveness. Having clear visibility of God & his kingdom is really important. Understanding how we are to remove all the splinters and planks that seriously restrict our vision is absolutely critical.

“So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.” 2 Cor 4:18

Elysium & My Weekend with Winkie

August 29th, 2013 Posted by VISION 0 thoughts on “Elysium & My Weekend with Winkie”

The first time I met Winkie Pratney was at a youth camp in a town just north of Calgary, Canada back in the early ’90’s. I still remember what he spoke about at the camp. I didn’t take any notes, there was just a connection to what he was talking about that I still remember very clearly. What he was saying made alot of sense and he really helped bring understanding to things that I thought were important.

So when Shari and I got married it was pretty amazing to find out that her family had been very close to Winkie & his wife Faye and their son William since the 1970’s. It seemed like such a small world. Winkie was the very insightful revivalist/theologian Buddy (Shari’s Father) would bring in for extended ministry times with the Youth Quake Ministry he was pastoring. So it was an honor after Winkie began to recover from the near fatal episode with his brain in Korea that we were able to host him at Pipeline. Over the past few years he has ministered once a year, but this year we were able to have him over two weekends & he graciously did a special seminar with our leaders.

Winkie is a movie fan and that friday night he offered to take me to see the movie Elysium. It is the summer blockbuster starring Matt Damon. Damon’s character has had a dream since he was a boy of taking his childhood sweetheart to Elysium. Elysium is like a heavily-gated community orbiting the earth. In the aftermath of some apocalyptic scenario created by an overpopulated earth. Many of the “elite” have fled to the safety of Elysium with its promise of security, affluence & staggering “fountain of youth” like health benefits. While the less privileged are left to navigate the dangers on the earth below & dream of one day visiting Elysium. But the desperate don’t just dream. Those with family members who are ill and in need of the healing centers that are the privilege of the citizen of Elysium resort to extreme underground measures to penetrate the heavily guarded security of Elysium, most often with tragic consequence.

So the young man (Matt Damon’s character) grows into a man with a checkered past, on parole & trying to make a fresh start in an unforgiving society.  His dreams of visiting Elysium seem to be gone until he becomes contaminated with radiation & is given 5 days to live. Suddenly in his desperation his dream is rekindled & his focus is sharpened with a fierce abandon. It was quite the movie & really got me thinking.

The next day was our leaders seminar with Winkie and he took the three hours to share about; Fractal Prophets, Quantum Guidance & Chaos Ministries, the type of ministry Winkie predicts will thrive in the 21st century. (The audio version of his teaching is available on the media tab of our site). One of the images Winkie showed us was a computer program of a fractal structure that seemed to continue forever and ever into his computer. Think about the never ending sequence of mirrors that you get when you position two mirrors to reflect into each other. So the fractal structure is like a tree of light with an infinite number of branches that come from it. The branches although unique each have a similarity. They look like curls, you see these patterns everywhere in nature. They are often referred to as the Fibonacci Sequence (Or the Golden Ratio). You can google it.  When you recognize it you begin to see it everywhere.

The Fractal structure got me thinking about John 15 & John 1. In John 15 Jesus talks about the importance of abiding. Jesus is the vine & we are the branches. He advises that we must remain in Him if we are to do anything of any lasting eternal significance. In John 1 we are told that in him is life and that life is the light of the world. In verse 12 of John 1, we read that “as many as received him he gave the authority to become the sons of God.” That word translated authority is exousia in greek and can also mean “power” or “right.” It is an incredible promise waiting for anyone to receive & one that has all the benefits of “Elysium”, but for real. Jesus resurrection from the dead is not a fairy tale. And if you will take the time to honestly weigh the evidence surrounding his crucifixion, death & resurrection, my bet is you’ll find alot of answers you may not even be aware you are searching for. Check out Josh McDowell’s book “Evidence that demands a Verdict”.

So reflecting on all I had been exposed to over the weekend I began to ask a bunch of questions. Are we, the church, sitting on this powerful reality, in an hour when many “stagger towards slaughter”? We are called to share this promise of life in Jesus with the world. I wondered are we more like the gated community keeping people out? or are we more like the one’s with a dream in our hearts, but stuck in the mundane routines of existence on a world headed towards oblivion? Or have we finally come to our senses like the “contaminated” Matt Damon, understanding that there is only One Hope & One Savior. In either case we need to shake off the fear & apathy that holds us back & resolve whatever the cost to proclaim the forgiveness of sin & freedom from sin that can only be found in Jesus. There are many in despair who need to hear this good news.

All in all my weekend with Winkie stirred something in me quite deeply. Thanks Winkie for taking me to Elysium & for the ice cream.

Pipeline to Battle

July 19th, 2013 Posted by VISION 0 thoughts on “Pipeline to Battle”

I came across an incredible story from World War 2 that has been a huge source of inspiration for us at Pipeline. Our name Pipeline is a bit unique for a church, but way back in 2004 when we were waiting on the Lord for a name he gave us this and we loved it. It seemed to fit with our location in downtown Humble (oil boom city) and our emphasis in serving the skateboarding culture. But the name means so much more. In Zechariah 4 God reveals a picture of pipes and a plumbline to Zechariah which we also feel has deep significance for us. Anyway, along our journey our burden in intercession has grown and grown. As this burden has grown we have become students of intercession, finding all the resources we could by those who know what it means to prevail with God on their knees “& win”. One of those books was about Rees Howells. An intercessor from Wales, whose entire life was marked by an astonishing diligence in intercession. Throughout the 2nd World War Howells and a group of intercessors from the Bible College of Wales stood in the gap in prayer for their nation against the invading Nazi forces. The author Norman Grubb, shares 5 critical strategic errors Hitler made during the war that changed its outcome. For every one of these errors, Rees Howells and his intercessors were on their knees before God contending together.


One of those strategic errors was at the battle of El Alamein (in North Africa) where the German Panzer division under the legendary General Rommel (aka, the Desert Fox) faced the allied forces of the British 8th Army, under General Montgomery. The battle was a battle of attrition, a slugfest, a blow for blow death match. The battle was critical and Hitler had given Rommel the order ‘victory or death’. However just minutes before the Allied forces were to be overcome. The German’s suddenly stopped firing & appeared over the ridge waving white flags of surrender. They rushed to the allied forces for water. What had happened? Incredibly in the German’s under-nourished and under-hydrated condition they had come across a water pipeline. They shot into it and immediately gulped down the water that broke forth. What they didn’t realize was they were drinking salt water, but by then it was too late. The Pipeline had just been laid down by the engineering corps of the eighth army and was still being tested with salt water. Fresh water was far too valuable for testing a pipeline. In the German’s haste to quench their thirst their bodies were actually becoming even more seriously dehydrated, which forced them to surrender. The original book this story was recorded in was called “Pipeline to Battle” by Major Peter Rainer, of the Engineering Corps. He described the situation as nothing short of a miracle, “divine intervention”. At the start of the war Rees Howell’s stated, “when prayer fails, intercession begins.”

How does that apply to Pipeline Church? Well first off it is not very often that I have found the word Pipeline, linked to such a prophetic title ‘Pipeline to Battle’. The timing of my first coming across this story was also particularly significant. It is my conviction, like this Pipeline, that the Lord himself has positioned us and tested us & is calling us to a battle (guarding the heart attitude of abiding) to prepare ourselves and this generation for a release of his ‘living water’  unlike what many may have ever experienced before.

Isaiah 44:3 For I will pour water on the thirsty land, and streams on the dry ground; I will pour out my Spirit on your offspring, and my blessing on your descendants.