“The Boy Who Fell Asleep And Died”
A Word For The Church In Perth In 2012
Early in the year, in prayer, fasting and seeking the Lord for a word for the Church in Perth for 2012, the Lord took me to Acts 20:7-12. In this passage we read about the young boy Eutychus, who falls asleep, falls out of the window and falls to his death 3 stories down, all while under the ministry of the Apostle Paul.
Fortunately for Eutychus, the story doesn’t end there. But more about that later.
The Lord showed me a few key things in this passage that I believe are part of a prophetic message that God is communicating to His Body in Perth.
1. The Church in Perth is like the Boy Eutychus:
A Boy is immature, not yet fully formed into maturity and manhood. His identity is still being forged. He is not at his full strength yet and is still in the process of developing stamina to match his strength.
I believe God would say to us that we must make maturity our goal. If maturity is our goal, then mission will be the outcome. Mission is best accomplished from a base of strength. It is clear that the destiny for the Church in Perth is to be a mission base, training, equipping and sending missionaries into all the world. To do this effectively, the Church in Perth must be mature, healthy, strong and persevering.
Currently, the Church in Perth is a boy, demonstrating massive potential, but still lacking the discipline and perseverance that the rigours of responsibility brings to mature Churches. God’s desire is that the Church in Perth would mature from being a boy into being a Man, fully equipped for the good works we were created for.
2. The First Fall of the Boy and the Church in Perth:
The boy Eutychus fell 3 stories, in 3 stages, to his death. In a similar vein, the Lord showed me how the Church in Perth has fallen in 3 stages.
The first fall of the boy was to fall asleep. No doubt the weariness of another busy day made the boy tired. The drowsiness and fog began to settle on him, and he lost the fight to keep his eyes open. Somehow he had managed to make himself just comfortable enough to be able to slumber and doze, until finally, he fell asleep.
Just so, the Church in Perth has fallen asleep to the urgency of the hour. Wearied from busy-ness, and losing the fight to stay watchful and prayerful, many in the Church in Perth are dozing and nodding off, even while being on watch on the walls. Some have even fallen asleep, but they are not even aware of it (as we never are, until somebody wakes us up!).
3. The Second Fall of the Boy and the Church in Perth:
In a deep sleep, the boy shifts and moves, not realizing how precariously he is perched, and he falls out the window, plummeting to the bottom.
There are windows of opportunity that the Church in Perth is sovereignly positioned to optimize. There are times, seasons, projects, tipping points, that the Lord has brought and will continue to bring to our City, let’s call these windows of opportunity? But the Church in Perth is asleep to these windows of opportunity, choosing instead to shift and reposition ourselves for greater comfort and ease.
These windows will close and the Church in Perth will fall out of position, out of our station in the Body of Christ. Be assured, the job will be done, but God will pass it onto another City, or another generation (See Isaiah 49: 8-9). We must fight to stay in position, to stay alert, in order to maximize the windows of opportunity God gives us.
There are also the sins of offense, of unforgiveness and of rebellion to authority, that have caused many in the Church in Perth to ‘fall out’. Our gross immaturity and disobedience has allowed us to react in a way that has harmed the Body of Jesus. We will never grow up in Christ if we are disconnected from His Body, or constantly shifting ‘position’ (church-hopping), in the hopes of finding the perfect place. It doesn’t exist on Earth.
4. The Third Fall of the Boy and the Church in Perth:
The bot falls and hits the bottom, killed by the impact, and he lies there dead, completely oblivious as to how this all happened.
In 2005, the late Minister and Prophet David Wilkerson, came to Perth with a message from the Lord for the Church in Perth. He made this statement: “the Church in Perth is dead!” He made reference to Revelation 3:1-2 likening the Church in Perth to the Church in Sardis.
Many in the Church in Perth fell asleep, fell out and are now dead, the problem is that they just don’t know it! Like Paul warned Timothy, there are many who profess to hold to a form of Godliness, yet they deny the power of true Godliness, that of being transformed and conformed to the image of Christ, and of continuously growing up into His fullness (not some lesser version that we make up to justify our position, petulance or passivity).
5. The Boy died under the ministry of the Apostle Paul:
It seems almost unbelievable, but the Bible tells us, so it must be true, that this boy could fall asleep and die under the preaching and ministry of the Apostle Paul!
Imagine! Being under the ministry of one of the greats; Paul the missionary, the miracle worker, the church planter, the evangelist… surely you couldn’t doze off under that?! But the boy did.
The Church in Perth has been blessed with many great 5 fold ministry gifts to the Body of Christ. There are great preachers, great evangelists, great miracle workers, great apostles, great prophets, great pastors, all through the Church in Perth, yet many in the church in Perth are asleep, or worse, dead! It is not the fault of the leaders alone, for the state of the Church in Perth, we are all responsible for our condition.
Now, Praise God that the story doesn’t end here.
Here is a course of action for the Church in Perth, if we are to fulfill our mandate as a City of Light, as a Missionary Sending Station to the World:
1. Paul went down, threw himself on the Boy and wrapped His arms around him.
Perhaps you know of some who have fallen asleep, fallen out of church or is dead in their faith? Now is the time to go down to them (pray and act), throw yourself on them (visit’s, emails, phone calls, texts – do it all!) and wrap them in an embrace of love and restoration.
2. “Don’t be alarmed!”
Fear of rejection, fear of conflict, fear of being misunderstood can often cause us to stand on the sidelines and watch transfixed, like someone witnessing a car accident!
Snap to attention and become part of the solution! Run to their aid. Reach out to those asleep or dead. This is the role of the mature saint in this hour. This is the preparation for the sweeping move of God as He restores and revives His Body to enable us to become the end-time harvesters of souls this world so desperately needs!
3. “He’s alive”
This great statement of faith, decreed over the Boy, activated the faith of those around him, and got them moving in a similar spirit of faith.
This is the season to be speaking the language of faith, of revival, of the Bible, of Heaven, of God! Short, sweet and highly effective! No room for argument or debate. Tell it like it is, or like it will be.
4. Then Paul went back upstairs, broke bread and ate.
This is not the focus of Apostolic Ministry, this is simply a part of the process. This is not to be the primary focus of the Church in Perth. Yes, it is urgent, it is a necessary interruption and an important role for the mature saints to play, but it is not the primary, overriding focus.
The primary focus for the Church in Perth, is to fulfill our mandate, our assignment, from the Lord Jesus.
What is that assignment? I believe it is to be a Missionary Training and Sending Base. This requires a high demand on the maturity, service and sacrifice of the saints in Perth. I believe that if we are faithful in this regard, then we will become the City of Light, shining brightly in this world. Then we will become a City of Refuge, prosperous and secure, regardless of world economies and the shakings coming soon (or even now), to all the Earth.
5. The People took the Boy home alive and were greatly comforted.
I believe that if we do what the Lord is asking us to do, then many of the prodigals, the disaffected and the disconnected, will return home, finding their way back into fellowship.
If we do as the Lord is asking us, we will see growth and health restored to the Church in Perth. Perhaps the first waves of growth will be the backslidden, those who have fallen asleep and died, being restored to life in Christ and fellowship in His Body?
Many divinely inspired relationships have been broken and many hearts have been wounded by the effects of the ‘falling out’ of the immature in the Church in Perth. Many Church Leaders and Congregations have been weakened and debilitated by this ‘falling out’, and they are in need of comfort.
To summarize, here is our course of action:
• Reach out to ‘sleeping, fallen out, dead’ ones.
• Don’t be afraid of their possible responses.
• Move and speak in faith that this is the Lord’s will.
• Keep the main thing, the main thing and stay focused on our assignment from God.
If we do as the Lord is saying, then I believe we will be comforted and encouraged by the results.
Ps Paul Botha