In an interview with City News, the founder of Daystar Television Network gave advice on how to face issues at different stages in life.
Daystar Television Network founders and evangelists Marcus and Joni Lamb visited City Harvest Church on the weekend of Jul 15 and 16. Marcus Lamb ministered at that weekend’s services, with a powerful message that encouraged the congregation to live their dreams.
In this interview Lamb shares his vision for Daystar and being on the spiritual advisory board of President Donald Trump. He also dispenses a few nuggets of advice for youths, married couples and parents.
Pastor, thank you for the Word this weekend. You preached about having dreams and taking risks if it is a clear Word from God. How do we test the Word to make sure it is from God and nowhere else?
If the dream is so big that we cannot do it on our own, it is probably from God. That way, we will totally depend on Him to see it come to pass, and He will get all the glory. If it were a small thing or a medium thing, He would not get all the glory—we would take credit for it.
Sometimes, people do things based on emotion, or on what other people say. Number one, ask yourself, is the dream burning in your heart? Are you passionate about it?
Number two, there is wisdom in a multitude of counsel, like our parents or pastors or other spiritually mature people. Are they in agreement? If you are married, is your spouse in agreement?
Thirdly, God uses peace as our guide to help us decide if something is right or wrong.
Finally, if a dream is from God, He will begin to open up doors, He will begin to provide and make a way. If that does not happen, God did not fail—we may have gotten it wrong. The good news is, even if we are sincere but sincerely wrong, He is not going to get mad at us or judge us. We have this treasure in earthen vessels—we have bruises and scars, but God decides to use us anyway.
It is getting tougher to be a Christian–it must be even harder in American entertainment. We saw Dr Phil, Kevin Sorbo and Billy Baldwin in the video earlier–people in entertainment who are outspoken Christians. How can Christians influence the world through media and entertainment in greater ways, given all the resistance we face?
First, we cannot be afraid of opposition. Everybody throughout the Bible who did anything great for God went through some kind of opposition. We have to realize that the call of God is not just to preach, sing, teach or to be a missionary.
God is raising up doctors, lawyers, nurses, teachers, bankers, and actors, creative people in arts and entertainment, and politicians to be salt and light. We have to be willing to follow the call of God no matter where it leads us, whether it is a dark area or a sparsely Christian-occupied area. If God is truly leading us there, He will make a way for us. A light shines the brightest in the darkest areas. We should be thrilled if He brings us somewhere difficult, because He will do something great!
A big part of our church is made up of adults entering the workforce or starting their families. How can they build a healthy marriage, grow their careers and remain in their ministry commitments to God, all at the same time?
Many people, due to a lack of knowledge, equate putting God first with putting the church or the ministry first. However, what it really means is that you put your personal relationship with God first: prayer and worship time. Our first ministry then is to our family. A man is to be the high priest of his home. What good is it if you win the whole world, but lose your own family?
Our first responsibility is to love our wife or husband, children, parents and siblings. When we have strong families, we will have a strong church. If we are gone all the time on the missions field and neglect our families, then we’re not a very good example of what the Word of God teaches.
At City Harvest Church, we’ve recently had our Emerge youth conference, themed Passion. Many of us are still experiencing a spiritual “high” from the conference. How did you sustain your passion as a youth?
You must stay in the church. My family and I were there every time the doors of the church opened. To tell you the truth, as a youth, I was not always willing to be in church. Sometimes there were ball games or activities with friends, but my parents had the wisdom and spiritual understanding to know that I had to be in the House of God in order to grow in the Lord. I had to be among other believers for fellowship.
Youths today need to frequent the House of God, get Christian music on their mobile devices, and build their spirit. They need to make strong relationships and friendships with strong Christians. If they get together more frequently with non-believers, they are more likely to be weakened and dragged down. They also need to learn the Word of God daily, like how we eat food to sustain and strengthen our bodies—the Word helps us stay strong.
What are some observations you have made about the youths of today, especially in liberal America, and how can Christians be relevant?
The millennials today have more knowledge and technology, and perhaps even gifts, than any generation before them, so the devil is making a hard play for them.
Yet in the middle of that, God is sending revival. God knows what an incredible resource the millennials are, so He is revealing Himself to them. Young people today want a God of power; they want to be involved in a religion or church that is real. If you can show them the realness, if you can relate to them and show them how they can make a difference, then they are ready to stand, fight, and do mighty things for God.
You have three beautiful children. How did you teach them in the ways of the Lord?
I married the best mother for them in Joni, and I give her and the Lord most of the credit!
I would say this is the basics for anyone: live the life before your children. They need to see you pray, see you in the House of God, see you worship, see you giving to God. They need to hear you rehearse the blessings of God. Many times, Joni and I would share stories about answered prayers and how God intervened and caused us to prevail. Sometimes, it felt like the children were not interested, or not even listening. However, they now recount what they did hear our stories of what God did. The stories made a difference in them.
Parents are humans and they make mistakes. When we make mistakes, we have got to own it. Sometimes, you need to tell them “I was wrong” and ask them for forgiveness. They need to see you model the goodness of God, because most kids get the first revelation of their Heavenly Father through their earthly father. A father has to do the best he can to show the love and forgiveness of the Father.
Get good parenting books or CDs to learn from others who have already been successful. Don’t just rely on yourself.
Your daughter Rachel just got married to Joshua Brown of Planetshakers. What advice did you give them and what prayers did you pray over them as they entered their new life?
You can’t tell your kids everything they ought to do, and once they get married, you no longer have total authority over them. They leave Mom and Dad, and cleave to their spouse. Joni and I try to model what a husband and wife should be like: show respect, show love, be sacrificial towards one another.
What I also try to do is to be an encourager about developing their gifts and talents. We would encourage them and honor them whenever they succeeded and bless them in what they want to do. Be the cheerleaders for your kids!
Daystar is a great blessing to the Christian world. How did Daystar first get into Israel?
In 2005, government officials from Israel came to America and asked to meet with Joni and I in Dallas, Texas. One of them was a Knesset (legislative branch of Israel) member. They said to us, “For years, we have been skeptical and suspicious of Christians because we felt all they wanted to do was convert us to Christianity. We finally realized that our only true friends in the world are the Christians. For three years we tried to find the one Christian ministry that we felt most comfortable to align ourselves with, and we decided it is Daystar. We will thus grant you a license, for the first time in our history, to have Christian television in all the homes.”
In 2006, Daystar launched on HOT cable channel (which reaches 55 percent of Israeli homes) and yes direct-to-home satellite (44 percent of Israeli homes). Combined, we are in 99 percent of the homes, and we are in most of the hotel rooms. We never sought for this opportunity, so God indeed gets all the glory!
What is your vision for Daystar in the next five years?
Daystar is already in all the countries of the world, but we need to be more saturated in some of these countries. We need to become more relevant across different cultures, religions and languages. We have to figure out how to make Daystar more relevant to people outside of the United States, because we do not want people to think God is a white, blonde-headed, blue-eyed God who only speaks English. We want them to know that God is the God of the whole world and that He loves everyone equally.
In your ministry, you must have met with many political dignitaries. How do you minister to or share about God’s goodness with them without being overly preachy?
Well, the Lord opened up the door for me to be selected as one of the few American ministers on the spiritual advisory board of President Donald Trump. I got to be with him a few times, and I think probably the best thing is to let him see the joy of the Lord, experience the love and peace of God, hear you talk about the good things of the Lord.
They don’t really need to be preached to, but your life can be a sermon, a living example. You have to gain their confidence. They need to be affirmed by your prayers for them. Scriptures tell us to pray for those in authority over us, whether we liked them or voted for them.
It is our responsibility as believers to honor and pray for those in authority over us. When they know that you are standing with them, loving and encouraging them, they will trust you and even reach out to you and say, “Hey, pray for me, or can you give me some advice?” It is a process.
Christians need to be salt and light. We don’t need to bury our heads in the sand like an ostrich. We don’t have any right to complain about the government if we’re not willing to get involved in the government. Even Jesus said, “Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and render to God the things that are God’s.”
We are to be obedient and good citizens, as long as the government doesn’t go against the Word of God. Christians should not lie or cheat on their taxes, they should not be breaking the law. We should be the best examples of law-abiding citizens!
The last time you visited City Harvest Church in 2014, we were still going through a trial. You told us to stand by our senior pastor, Kong Hee and hold up his arms. Now that the dust has settled, how can we move on from the past seven years?
We should continue to honor and love Pastor Kong, because he is the spiritual father of this House. God gave him the initial vision and mandate for CHC, so even though he is not here physically, we need to keep him in our hearts and prayers. We also need to realize that God is our Source, not man. We have to go on with God.
Pastor Kong would be proud if the people of CHC continue to get closer to the Lord and get more involved in the church, community and outreaches.
I want to say to the people that God is not through with Pastor Kong and He is not through with CHC, and not through with you individually.
Daystar will be broadcasting CHC’s weekend service with Pastor Marcus Lamb soon.