Several years ago, Father began to speak to our hearts that we were merchandising the anointing by ‘selling’ merchandise on our website. He said, “Stop it! Stop trusting in the world’s weaponry of sales of merchandise for ministry finances.” At the time, the ministry continually struggled to make ends meet. Father always sustained us, but there was a deep work He wanted to do in our hearts regarding finances and fully trusting Him and His ability to provide for us. He specifically told us that if He gave us something to write or record that the message belonged to Him, not us! Therefore, we were to just put the message out there and not expect to gain anything by selling His message! After all, that’s what most ministries were doing, right? And yes, they are still doing it today only in bigger and more grandiose ways. I’ll explain more on that later in this article.
When He said, “Stop merchandising the anointing,” we began to seek His direction. First, we repented for doing something that seemed so right and yet was so egregious to Him. After all, this was just the way ministries both large and small operated. We were simply following their lead. He gave us specific direction to take down our ministry website store and offer everything free. For projects that we had already paid to produce, He instructed us to place them out there on a free will love offering basis. This would put Him back in control of what was paid for and what was gifted. It was a leap of faith for sure.
During this time, we worked in a large, well-known ministry and Gerri worked in the Resource Department. At that time more than 40% of that ministries’ income came in from sales of products the ministry produced. The thinking of the ministry leadership at that time was if the ministry leader didn’t go out on speaking engagements, the money wouldn’t come in. In addition, the sales of materials in the form of books, cd’s, and videos promoted at the book table at each event would also not come in. This became huge idolatry within the ministry. They were merchandising the anointing on the message Father had given this ministry. There was no trust in Father for finances. The trust was in the ministry leader and what could be bought and sold!
Over the past few weeks our inbox has been inundated, saturated and full of hundreds of texts and emails regarding sales techniques meant to get us to focus on buying, buying, buying. These messages came from all worldly sources, but the ones that have broken our hearts most are the ones we get from ministries both large and small merchandising the giftings and anointings that Father has given them. Books, cd’s, tapes, videos, dvd’s…you name it. They have been included in Black Friday specials, Giving Tuesday requests for donations, Christmas sales, and many more. The ones that annoy us the most are the ‘fear mongering’ solicitations. You know the ones. “Supplies are limited, so if you don’t order now you will miss out.” These messages promote fear, anxiety and stress. They are NOT from the Lord. We refuse to purchase anything that is promoted through fear.
So, what has been His purpose in all of this for us? Remember we said that He wanted to do a huge work in our hearts regarding our finances. He wanted to teach us to trust Him for every dollar or any gift that comes into the ministry. He wanted us to make sure that the things we write or post come from His inspiration and therefore, they belong to Him (this article included!) We never see in God’s word where Jesus sold anything. He gave and He gave liberally and freely and then He trusted Father for His entire provision. That’s what He wants from all of us today. Freely we have received…we should freely give. The outcome for this part of our adventure is amazing. Today the ministry is flourishing financially. We and the ministry are completely debt free and have been for a long time. We have gone from filing bankruptcy in 2004 to the barns being full and overflowing today! We no longer are tied to a tithe…we just listen to Holy Spirit and give as He directs when He directs and how He directs.
Finally, we want this message to ring in the hearts of ministry leaders all around the world. Stop merchandising the anointing and begin to put your trust in your Heavenly Father to meet all your needs according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus. Stop trusting in man’s merchandising tricks. Father’s tools are much superior. It will take a leap of faith, but the results are profoundly amazing.
Roger and Gerri
Jesus said to all of His followers, “If you truly desire to be my disciple, you must disown your life completely, embrace my ‘cross’ as your own, and surrender to My ways. For if you choose self-sacrifice, giving up your lives for My glory, you will embark on a discovery of more and more of true life. But if you choose to keep your lives for yourselves, you will lose what you try to keep. Even if you gained all the wealth and power of this world, everything it could offer you, yet you lost your soul in the process, what good is that? So why then are your ashamed of being My disciple? Are you ashamed of the revelation-truth I give you?
Luke 9:3-26 The MSG