A friend of mine is having a conference and we were talking about how slow her registration has been. Even her friends who said they would register to support and live in the same city has not done so. When she asked why, One response was: "Well I just found out "Big Name" Preacher is doing something that same weekend so I am going to that instead. I'm praying for your event though. Girl, I know God is going to do a great thing at your event." WOW for real, that is like a slap in the face. Lord Help your people.
It is my belief that she meant every word. But let's look at what this message is really saying. First, we as Christians have become just as star studded as the world. We hear Prophet, Evangelist, Bishop, Apostle or Pastor "big name" is going to be somewhere and we will almost sell our children into slavery to get there. While our Pastor, at the church we attend, cant get us to come to a prayer meeting. We will hop from state to state or city to city to see "Big Name" singer but our church musical struggles to have 100 people in attendance. Now I am not saying this because I have not done it but that will not stop me from speaking the truth and shaming the Devil. I will repent along with you.
Second, her statement shows that she does not uphold her word. She gave her word she would support and then she choose not too. My Bible tells me that all liars will have their part in the lake of fire. (Rev 21:8). harsh, maybe but truth. If we give our word that we are going to do something we should keep that word. If we look at how God views His own Word, that would give us an understanding on how we should handle our words. The Bible says:
I will bow down toward your holy temple and will praise your name for your unfailing love and your faithfulness, for you have so exalted your solemn decree that it surpasses your fame. (Psalms 138:2)It seems to me that we need to watch what we say and only say what we truly mean. Now I am not saying a person cant change their mind, however, it struck me that this dear Sister was not going to tell her "friend" that she was not going to come if she had not called her.
I know the hard work behind setting up a conference and trying to follow God's direction for the conference and then you have to worry if any one will come to hear the word of the Lord...Now it's a shame that many times the life changing word that I have received did not come from the "Big Name" preacher, I ran to see, but the "No Name" preacher in the little church on the left hand side of the street in the neighborhood no one wants to witness in. Not always but it is the case many times. I have been in a service where a "big name" was scheduled but for some reason they did not preach or was delayed at the airport, etc... and the replacement preacher, if you will, preached a Rhema word for me that changed my situation. On the other hand I have listened to a "BIG name" preacher and shouted but left in the same bondage I had come in.The reverse is also the same. But let me make my point, please!!
Which makes me think, are we putting too much in a name?
Lastly, If God has called someone to preach His word and he esteems His word according to Psalms 138:2 as he does...Why would we think that the Word that comes from the "No name" preacher is any less than the Word that comes from the "big name" preacher. Let me ask you something...When was the last time you heard a sermon that you can still talk about today. Not who preached the Word but what the Word actually was. I have heard many sermons from "BIG name" preachers and to save my life I can remember one point. Then there are some that I can remember and probably even re-preach if I had to. I kid you not, I have more sermons that I remember from My Pastor, Bishop Rufus K. Turner, than I can remember from Prophetess Bynum, Bishop Jakes, Pastor Jamal Bryant, just to name a few. These are anointed men and women of God, however, they are messengers just like I am a messenger of the Gospel.
Let me say this again, this is not to make you stop going to hear "BIG Name" preachers, but it is to bring your attention to your motives. Remember, this friend said "Girl, I know God is going to do a great thing at your event." My thought is this, what if the deliverance you need is at the small "no name" conference but you are at the "big name" conference with others who are just as star studded as you are. The Spirit moves and stirs you but doesn't change you... However, the other conference, the Spirit of the Lord is there changing lives, breaking bondage and putting the Devil on the run... there is power and manifestation, not emotional feel good stuff. Now this can happen at any conference (the emotional feel good stuff) but I think we need to check our motives. It might be that God wants us to go to the "BIG NAME" conference but did you even inquire of the Lord. I think when God has anointed a person to plan a conference and they are being led to have certain speakers, it because God has something special He wants to do in that assembly of folks... We must be mindful where the Lord wants us to go and what He's trying to do in our lives.
Go where the Lord leads you but do not forsake the "no name" conference because you are thinking "who is that? I have never heard of him/her" or "who else is going to be there?" Remember God can use anyone or anything to bless you. He is the one who knows what you need. Inquire of Him and if He tells you to go... GO... whether "BIG NAME" or "NO NAME!" You may just receive the Word you are looking for because you were obedient.
Now as I close, let me say this too. We preachers whether BIG NAME or NO NAME need to stop prostituting the Word of the Lord. Going to the highest paying church and putting on a show. If you have a Word to deliver, deliver the Word and let God deal with the other. I am one who believes that a preacher SHOULD be paid for bringing a life changing Word. especially those in full-time ministry, however, stop this madness of I cant preach for less than $$$$.$$ amount of dollars. The Gospel was given freely to you so freely give and let God touch the hearts and minds of the people. I know many churches will not pay or pay very little but the word says my God shall supply all your needs according to HIS riches not the saints. Churches need to pay or allow you to take up a love offering but stop demanding credit numbers, large deposits and large sums of money for something that came to you freely. Now this is not to say that you cant have a set number...but remember this is the Gospel and not some cheap speech! Okay i have said it all.
Be blessed and encouraged
Pastor Linda Hillman
BTW - for those who are wondering, yes I am in full-time ministry and yes i have a set number that I charge to preach however, I also listen for the voice of the Lord and will make the adjustments he tell s me to make. No I don't consider myself a "BIG name" preacher but I do know if I show up to preach. There is a Life changing, bondage breaking, set the Devil on the run - WORD from the Lord.