Mike Harper tells us in his testimony “I hope to use this Ireland ministry training to help give me more skills to reach our local community with the gospel.”
Ireland Ministry Training
Hi, my name is Mike Harper and I am from Ireland. This is my testimony. I grew up in Dublin city on the East coast but now I live in Abbeyleix, County Laois. My wife and I are hoping to reach our local community of about 2,000 people with the gospel, there is no church here. We don’t feel led to start a church but are going to open our home as a house of prayer. The majority of the local population are cultural Christians, who have been inoculated against the gospel, but with God, all things are possible.
I grew up in a Christian home. My parents were missionaries in Dublin and my father worked for over fifty years in family and youth ministry. I first gave my life to God as a young man but I was holding onto childhood issues and suffered from depression since the age of nine. Depression began to tear my life apart and I turned to alcohol and away from the church, although I still believed in God. I spent several years in the wilderness, living an ungodly life and eventually became a ‘prodigal’ son who returned to the Lord.
My dream is more than a dream, it is a calling, to intercede for my people and my nation, to be a speaker of truth, a missionary as the Lord leads me. The wind blows and you don’t know where it will blow, so it is like this for those who are of the Spirit of God, following His direction wherever He may lead. This Ireland ministry training at Christian Leaders Institue will help me answer this calling.
I have faced many challenges while growing to maturity in Christ. The most difficult to face are when God takes an opinion or thought process and turns it completely upside-down. This happened recently after completing one of my latest books which was highlighting areas where Christians need to be more discerning and protective of their families and churches. After finishing the book, God reminded me that now that work was completed, I was to forget and overlook how people are now, and instead look at people the way that Christ does – as the finished article. These instances also are a reminder of the importance of humility. Furthermore, Jeremiah spoke about how all our good works are like filthy rags. If I wrote a book and it sold a million copies and changed the lives of many people, that ‘work’ is like a filthy rag to the Lord because He is so holy, and our minds are so easily filled with motives and selfishness.
God became real for me when I finally accepted that He was speaking to me and quite often in dramatic ways. For example, I remember somewhere around 2009, during my wilderness years, I was drinking at a party when suddenly I felt the touch of the Holy Spirit and then felt an urge to go upstairs to my friend’s bedroom. I obeyed. There I found my friend’s cousin attempting to kill himself with a belt around his neck.
I did say the prayer of salvation in my youth as previously mentioned, but it was not until around 2011 that I finally gave all my life to Him, every inch of my life, everything I own, EVERYTHING!
I hope to use this Ireland ministry training to help give me more skills to reach our local community with the gospel. At the moment Christian Leaders Institute suits because of the distance study element and being free also helps. When I was much younger I yearned to go to Bible College, now I am finally there!
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