John Arnott: Patricia Bootsma's "Lifestyle of Divine Encounters" is a must-read!
A Lifestyle of Divine Encounters is a must-read for every person who desires to be closer to God, and to live out their life’s mission in power and great fruitfulness. Seriously, it is really, really good! In one way, the title says it all!
I have known Patricia Bootsma ever since she was a teenager who turned up at the first church that Carol and I planted back in 1981 in Stratford, Ontario, Canada. Jubilee Christian Fellowship was soon replete with young people and she became one of the most eager, joining in during the mid to late ’80s. She had a great hunger for the Word of God and a great desire to deal with the hurts and fears in her own life, to be all the better positioned to walk in the Anointing before the Lord with clean hands and a pure heart. She wanted to help people through fruitful ministry.
I remember when she left for the University of London in London, Ontario, to study nursing, which she handily completed, graduating and becoming a registered nurse; while there she facilitated a home group of other youth who learned about and encountered the Lord under her influence and leadership. Her career took her to Toronto, where right at the time we were beginning our Toronto church as a small group in my mother’s living room. Not infrequently, Patricia would be there as well, worshipping, receiving, and contributing.
Throughout these years, Carol and Patricia became very close and spent many hours together, working through the issues of the heart for healing, cleansing, and freedom. She was at the forefront of us developing our core values of FIRE:. Receiving a revelation of the Father’s love; Intimacy and learning to hear His voice; Restoration, healing and sanctification through repentance and forgiveness for hurts, wounds, shame, pain, anger, and fear; and finally; Equipping believers for ministry and evangelism, by the gifts of the Spirit through the fruits and power of the Spirit.
As I began reading the galleys of A Lifestyle of Divine Encounters, I instantly realized that Patricia has an amazing grasp of the aforementioned FIRE values, and in addition, has blended all that with an intimate and powerful prayer life that enables and empowers her to have a full working knowledge of these values, and to be the mighty woman of God and amazing wife and mother that she is.
I am very pleased and excited to recommend A Lifestyle of Divine Encounters to you. It is a powerful how-to, step-by-step manual for you to enter into, and not only maintain, but grow in the necessary steps and stages of a revival lifestyle. She will teach you to pray, and not just pray, but pray with joy and fervent effectiveness, which is so lacking in the body of Christ today. When John and Patricia returned to our Toronto church, after a season away leading our Stratford church, one of her first missions was to ramp up our House of Prayer to include the youth of our School of Ministry and many others, bringing Harp and Bowl ministry—Worship and Prayer together. It resurrected the Tabernacle of David ministry among us for many hours every day. Also, you will discover her amazing grasp of, and love for the Word of God, as it is the basis and final authority of all that we teach and do.
I particularly enjoyed Patricia’s teaching on prophetic ministry. It would be fair to say that this is one of her strong suits, right along with prayer. She explains and teaches prophetic ministry so well and in such a balanced way, that it would set any pastor’s heart at ease to have this kind of cutting-edge teaching brought with such helpful checks and balances included and taught to their prophetic and intercessory people. (that group is sometimes the pastor’s nightmare :) ).
If you take a look at the various chapter titles in the opening pages, you will note that this is a book centered around Prayer, Prophecy and the Word of God. But don’t be fooled by a superficial or casual glance. A Lifestyle of Divine Encounters is a serious instructional manual for those who want to press into a deep and meaningful relationship with our wonderful trinitarian God. I was so impressed with the maturity and experience that accompanied these teachings, and I found them all so very helpful and practical, that Carol and I plan to go through this entire book again, slowly and meditatively, applying each and every chapter of this book to our hearts for our own growth and devotions. I find it so exciting that we can now learn such deep, meaningful and functional truth from one of our spiritual daughters, of whom we are very proud.
This is a very practical piece for us all. You will not be confused or bewildered by what Patricia brings. Again and again, you will find yourself agreeing that this need in your life that is being uncovered is important, and yet it is not out of reach for you. With the practical steps that are being offered, you will clearly see that this needs to become a value and goal for your life. If you are even considering this book, then it is because you are hungering and thirsting for the realities of God to become even more powerful and effective your life. Personally, I found this to be an absolutely amazing book. I was surprised by how good it is. (Though knowing Patricia, I shouldn’t have been.) It truly is a manual that will take established, yet hungry Christians onward and upward to a whole new fruitful life experience in the God of love and power. The truths and revealed insights are bathed in prayer, fueled by revelation yet seasoned and tested with the rigors of over 20 years of pastoral and itinerant ministry. It IS going to bless you richly!
Well done, Patricia, for a very practical, helpful and needed resource for those of us in the Body of Christ today who are contending for a fuller life in the Spirit as we pray and believe for the greatest outpouring of the Holy Spirit since the book of Acts, and the greatest harvest of souls ever to flood the halls of Heaven, and all before the soon return of our wonderful Savior and Lord, Messiah Jesus.
John Arnott, author of Preparing for the Glory
Founding Pastor, Catch the Fire, Toronto