This past Saturday, the church lost a pioneer and warrior, at least here on earth. I’m sure he has asked the Lord if there are any celestial planets that need some change! My friend, Don Lynch, a husband, father, great teacher, and apostolic pioneer transitioned to Heaven on that day. He will be missed by many. The title of the post is taken from a 4-minute word Don gave at a prayer gathering in Arizona. For those of you watching, the clip will begin at the very end of today’s post.
In my book, The Way Back, I wrote about America’s need for a rebirth of the pioneering spirit.
“True pioneers have become a rare breed in our generation. We’ve seen a few in technology, communication, medicine, and transportation. But a large percentage of Americans, and certainly most spiritual leaders, have abandoned the pioneer spirit that birthed America. Becoming followers and settlers, we’ve built our walls of protection, seeking the comfort and security of the crowd. The need for traveling only the known path has tamed us, and we’ve lost the concept of being world-changers. Deep in the soil of this land, however, is pioneer blood, crying out for a new generation of trailblazers to answer a pathfinding, pioneering call of the wild.
“This spirit is so needed now because America has lost her moral and spiritual bearings, straying from the basic principles that made her great. Truth, integrity, personal and corporate responsibility, self-discipline, biblical morality, and the ideals of our founders - all have been at least partially lost. America now needs a new generation of pathfinders and way-makers to arise and lead us back to our roots. Ironically, the way forward is sometimes behind us. Contrary to what many people believe, ‘old’ is not synonymous with ‘outdated.’ The future must always be built on yesterday’s strong foundation. The Psalmist said, in fact, ‘If the foundations be destroyed, what can the righteous do?’ (Psalm 11:3)
“The church should have been leading America back to our foundations, but Christians seem to also have lost their connection to the pioneer spirit. Deep within the DNA of every believer is the spirit of Christ, the Pioneer of all pioneers, but this nature has been lost in the wilderness of conformity, religion, and compromise. God, however, is issuing a fresh and powerful invitation to believers:
Leave behind the safety and boredom of tame, anemic religion. Abandon
the shallow life lived by the all-too-common narcissistic Christian in America. Overcome the fear of death, loss, and the unknown. Follow me back to what I birthed 2000 years ago: radical, world-changing, miracle-working, fearless, love-not-your-lives-unto-death, passionate, warrior-hearted pioneers!
“Heaven is waiting for a remnant of God-fearing Americans to answer this call and begin a pathfinding journey. Earth is waiting, also. Broken hearts, hungry bellies, enslaved girls, war-ravaged nations, and unsaved people - they’re all desperately waiting for a 21st-century breed of pioneers to arise and lead.
“Perhaps you’re one of them.”(1)
Don Lynch was truly a pioneer of pioneers. Somewhat Patton-esque, I imagine he was a bit scary to some. To the warrior, he was a kindred heart that caused you to look for the next giant. A few months back, Don wrote the following challenge to pioneer leaders:
“Pioneers cannot go back into a ‘play it safe’ mode. No! You cannot just do ‘whatever, whenever,’ pioneer! You must move through when ‘through’ is open for going through. The trail ahead will close up in winter. It will be open only for a measurable moment of opportunity.
“If early snow comes, catching a pioneer by surprise, the passes can fill up and lock him down for months. Whenever the trail closes, a pioneer must wait it out somewhere along the route. So, consider where you must be in October as your signal for what you do in March. Do not measure your present activity by the green-dusted pollen of spring.
“Pioneers who get comfortable never ‘get there.’ Pioneering requires consistent preparation, constant pressing. Pausing for a couple of days is not quitting. But be careful, finding a restive stream under shaded oaks may tempt you to see the present comfort as your future home.
“Even pioneering people must have pioneers who go before them. Someone must find the trail. They would not need your pioneering leadership if they knew the trail, carried maps, and knew the way through the gaps. They do need to rest, of course, but generally speaking, you must keep them moving. They will sit down, if you do. They will stand up, when you do. Pioneering people will press through a salt lake of white dust with blistered lips because they trust your accurate anticipation of what’s coming next.
“Remember that pioneering people stagnate more quickly when not moving ahead. They are not like those ‘enjoying the out-of-doors,’ strolling through designed and designated, groomed, and cultivated public parks.
City folks stay close to home; Pioneers reach the summit of the next hill.
City folks wander on the weekends in encapsulated camping-gear-simulations of the wilderness; Pioneering people live on the trail.
City folks await the next studio premiere of canned worship, listening to yesterday and now; Pioneering people keep moving through the latest worship songs to the sound coming from tomorrow.
“The Holy Spirit gave me a vision. I entered a garage with a shingled roof, a gravel floor, a side door, and two paned windows. Then I saw old, rusting license plates nailed to the open studs of the interior walls.
“God‘s hand reached down and pulled the license plates off the walls. His breath sandblasted rust off of them, exposing the fresh metal underneath. His burning eyes painted them with renewed colors. Then, He put His thumb on the place where the annual sticker indicates whether or not a license plate is current and said, ‘I am renewing the original permissions that birthed ministries. I am re-licensing the calling of pioneering leaders and people. I am sending fresh orders to warriors at ease. I am re-authorizing dreams from decades of “out-of-date,” but honored, memories.’
“Do not play it safe now! Restore the pioneering spirit that birthed the thing you have since structured for settlement. Get that early ‘spring move’ back into your ministry with a ‘where we need to be for winter’ vision.
“Up and at ‘em, pioneers! God started us on the pioneer trail, and we have a tough road before us. But He created us for this! He birthed us for and called us to pioneering! He has anointed us for it! And be assured, springs of grace await us in the desert!
“God demands of us every morning: ‘Get up and move, Pioneers! Comfort is not your friend!’
“What comes next will never be settled by ordinary people, honey.”
On this day, 2/22/22, I leave you with a challenge to watch the following short 4-minute clip. It is a poignant and powerful exhortation Holy Spirit gave Don at 2:22 A.M. when we were in Arizona praying for the 2020 elections. He delivered it that night in the service. Let it inspire you as it did me. (Click here to watch it.)
Pray with me:
May the pioneer spirit come upon many believers in America.
The pioneer spirit IS coming upon many believers in America!
Click here to watch the 4-minute video clip.
Click on the link below to watch the full video.