Last weekend I attended an FGBMFA Prophetic conference sponsored by the St Paul Minnesota FGBMFA Chapter. The Minnesota Conference, which was organized by three young Joshua Generation men Chris Rasmussen, and Jeff Bremer, included forty-five registered guests, equally split between men and women.
The conference was birthed during our Seventh National Convention in Dallas Texas, when the “St Paul Joshua’s” met Dr. Richard Maiden, a man with a clear prophetic and teaching anointing.
But before I report further on the incredible St. Paul FGBMFA Prophetic Conference let me share with you a series of events, which I believe are the hand of God, refocusing FGBMFA’s efforts to fulfill the prophetic vision given to our founder, Demos Shakarian.
About three weeks before our National Convention in Dallas I received a call from an old friend, Dr. Richard Maiden. Richard said that he would like to fly to Seattle and council with Barbara and me about a new direction which he felt God was taking his ministry, International Harvesters for Christ. I had not spoken to Richard for nearly eight years, when we last met during the 2005 FGBMFI World Convention. During our telephone visit I agreed to meet with Richard. I told him however, that I could not find the time to meet with him until early August after our National FGBMFA Dallas-Ft. Worth Convention. After I hung up the telephone however, I sensed that I should call Richard Maiden him back and invite him to the Dallas Convention. Barbara agreed, and we invited Richard to be our guest at the Dallas 2013 Convention. Some of you, like the men from St. Paul no doubt spoke with Richard at that convention.
After the Dallas Convention Barbara and flew to Oakland, California where we attended the Business Men’s Fellowship Convention. While attending the BMF Convention in Oakland we met briefly with one of the convention speakers, Dr. David Robinson. Dr. Robinson travels and speaks internationally on “ministry in the marketplace”. One of David Robinson’s books is entitled ‘Idle In the Marketplace at the eleventh hour’. In it he discusses “Market Place Ministry and more specifically “Market Place Apostles”. Barbara purchased several of Dr. Robinson’s books and several weeks later she began to read them. About half way through the book entitled “Idle in the Marketplace at the Eleventh Hour” she handed the open book to me and said “Market Place Apostle – that is what you are!” Up until that time I do not believe that I had ever heard the term “Market Place Apostle”.
Then just two days later, on Friday August 3rd Richard Maiden flew to Seattle to meet with Barbara and me. Richard began to talk with me about the market place ministries of ‘the prophet’ and ‘the apostle’ and how the Fellowship was called to raise up men into these callings. The Fellowship of course, had raised up many business men to start the Fellowship in the nations during the 1960’s and though the 1990’s; And it still does so in many areas of the world. “I was one of those men!” During Richards visit he gave me a copy of Peter Wagner’s book entitled “Dominion” and asked me to specially read the Chapter seven entitled “A NEW SCENARIO, The Church in the Workplace”. In his book “Dominion” Wagner introduces “Workplace Apostles” and discusses the office of the Prophets and Apostles in the workplace. Wagner also deals with the shift taking place from the church that meets on Sunday which he calls the “Nuclear Church”, to the church which meets Monday through Saturday, which he calls the “Church in the Workplace” I will address this issue further in my August newsletter.
On the last evening of Richard Maiden’s visit to Seattle Barbara and I invited three of our FGBMFA leaders and their wives to our home for dinner. After dinner I asked Richard to minister to them as the Lord led him. Two of these men were home builders and one works for a company that sells to Costco. Richard ministered a clear prophetic word to each man and to the members of their families. Since I knew these men personally, I can testify to the amazing accuracy of the words of knowledge they received from Richard. Wow! One of the home builders a man who had gone bankrupt during the financial crisis of the last decade received a tremendous spiritual release, and an emotional healing. All who were present were tremendously blessed and encouraged! Frankly Barbara and I had forgotten the amazing accuracy of Richard’s prophetic ministry until that evening in our home earlier this month!
But before I go any further let me share with you a brief history of my relationship with Richard Maiden. A relationship that gives me a tremendous confidence in his ministry… Richard like many of you grew up in the Fellowship, in the eighty’s and ninety’s he spoke in several World Conventions. In 1996 Barbara and I asked Richard and his wife Carol to minister in our Regional Northwest Convention in Seattle. I remember that convention vividly. The Spirit of God was so strong that many, including my wife Barbara were not able to stand during the meeting. That night Barbara had to be carried to our room where she lay like a woman giving birth for half the night, her abdomen jumping from time to time in what appeared to be labor pains. Subsequently Richard and Carol returned to the Northwest to speak in our 1999 Regional Convention. They left America to minister in Europe from 1999 through 2006. In 2006 Carol suffered an attack of Lyme disease that eventually deteriorated into Alzheimer’s disease. For the last six years Richard has been caring for Carol attempting to help her regain her former health. Earlier this year however, the Alzheimer’s had progressed to the place that she no longer recognized Richard, and she was placed in an Alzheimer’s care facility. I have given you Richard’s background so that you would understand that my relationship with Richard goes back several decades and Richard’s relationship with the Fellowship is similar to mine, the Fellowship has shaped his Christian life and his ministry.
After my meeting with Richard Maiden in Seattle, I decided to fly to Minneapolis last weekend to attend the three day St Paul Prophetic Conference I spoke of earlier. At that conference Richard taught on the “authority of the believer” the first day, the office of the Prophet the second day, and the offices of the prophet and apostle on the third day. As Richard taught during the first two days of the conference he would stop from time to time and minister a word of knowledge or wisdom as the Lord led him. On day three he ministered extensively in the Spirit. The young crowd was very receptive to Richards teaching and thrilled with the prophetic words they received during the ministry times.
Roger Sonnesyn, a Director with the old FGBMFI Minneapolis chapter attended the Friday morning meeting, and asked me to come back to Minneapolis in several months and teach a group of his business people from my book “Business by the Spirit”. I believe we could combine the “Business By the Spirit teaching, with Richards Prophetic ministry in a second prophetic conference in the Minneapolis area later in the year, particularly, if a new chapter is started in the downtown Minneapolis area.
I will be writing more on Prophets and Apostles in the marketplace, in my August Newsletter, please read it as I believe this may be the way that God will lead us to expand the Fellowship into the 21st Century Business World. But it was the enthusiasm and the energy of the Joshua guys in Minneapolis – St Paul that confirmed it for me and made the St Paul Prophetic Conference such a huge success! I believe the St Paul conference is a format we can use elsewhere in the nation to stir up our men, and recruit a host new business men into our Fellowship!!
In Jesus Name,
Robert W. Bignold
Full Gospel Business Men’s Fellowship in America