Interview: Bill Johnson on Developing a History in God and a One Pursuit Lifestyle

There is a great need in the church for Spiritual Fathers who are getting and sustaining breakthrough in the Spirit. We need to hear from mentors who have a solid history in God and are passionately pursuing a One Pursuit lifestyle that we can pull from.

Paul says:

‘For though you might have ten thousand instructors in Christ, yet you do not have many fathers; for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the gospel.” 1 Cor. 4:15

I asked Bill Johnson to give us some of his insight on a M1P life. What is working for him and what advice he had to pass on to you. He was gracious enough to do so.

Bill is the Lead Pastor at Bethel Church in Redding, CA which is now established as an Apostolic Center influencing many churches and ministries from around the world.

He has authored several books and travels extensively in a signs and wonders and teaching ministry. You can find out more information Bethel Church and at Bill Johnson Ministries.

Bill’s thoughts are always concise and thought-provoking. Read them over and pray into each one.

I hope this will be one of many interviews from Bill and others on M1P. Enjoy.

The Interview

Q: Why is it so vital to develop your own personal history in God?

Bill: It’s only by developing our personal history can we know the difference between theory and true knowledge/experience. We need the latter in times of crisis.

Q: What are some of the practical things you do in cultivating a history in God?

Bill: Pray about everything – look to the Word for answers – cultivate a trust for the issues of life. I keep God’s promises before me continuously and give Him praise before the answer comes.

Q: What are a few simple steps you would recommend for people to begin developing their own history in God?

Bill: Keep a record of God’s promises that have been made personal – given to you by God, either directly or through a trusted leader.

Q: What are some things to watch out for that can hinder someone from developing their history in God?

Bill: We hinder the process by carrying our own agenda. Those who need significance will often bow to the urgent and be pulled away from the process.

Q: Any last thoughts?

Bill: Have fun. Always have fun! ☺

Your Thoughts

I would love to hear your thoughts on this.

What do you think about some of the things Bill shares? What is currently working for you? What advice would you offer M1P readers about developing a history in God?

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  1. Patrick Atkins May 4, 2011 at 8:40 am

    Man, this is awesome! I love the wisdom and insight that Bill carries through his own personal history with the LORD. The second to last answer was very helpful. I’m twitting and FBing this 🙂

    1. Patrick Atkins May 4, 2011 at 9:37 am

      What’s working for me…I have to draw up an action plan for the week to keep me from being sucked into the “tyranny of the urgent” as Corey Russell put’s it. Even if I don’t follow it to a T, I can always look real quick to get back on track. It really helps when I am in the Prayer Room for several hours a day.

      1. Greg Simas May 4, 2011 at 5:36 pm

        Patrick, sounds like an excellent plan. You’ll have to let me see it sometime. 🙂

      2. Barbie May 4, 2011 at 10:17 pm

        I’d like to see your “Action Plan” as well!

  2. Barbie May 4, 2011 at 9:28 am

    “Those who need significance will often bow to the urgent and be pulled away from the process.” WOW, this really hit me. I have come a long way in this area, but I can still see where this is something I need to continually contend for, finding my significance in God, and not being pulled away into the urgent! I shared on MFBL Facebook page!

    1. Greg Simas May 4, 2011 at 5:40 pm

      There is something in the heart of what we consider “urgent” that keeps us away from the depths of knowing Him. In some way we need to redefine that word to fit our pursuit of God.

  3. Dean Deguara May 4, 2011 at 10:01 am

    Bill taught me how to keep a record of all of God’s promises & prophetic words that have been spoken over me. I keep them next to me all the time. I recently had a two personal prophetic words (one was twenty years ago, the other 10 years ago) that were remarkably fulfilled. Amazing what God will do when we contend for the promises!

    1. Greg Simas May 4, 2011 at 5:42 pm

      Dean that is so right on. I have mine on my computer but don’t look at them nearly enough. Your testimony has encouraged me to get those out, review and pray into them often!

  4. tina miller May 4, 2011 at 11:23 am

    i wanted your interview to be longer!! i just saw him in pasadena at the conference here, it was very good. i will post on facebook your interview 🙂 i’m going to ihop in kansas city next week!!

    1. Greg Simas May 4, 2011 at 5:49 pm

      Tina…wow so good to hear from you! I love what the Lord is doing in your heart. So good to see you pursuing the Lord in this way! Stoked about you going to KC. Our son, Jordan, plays the drums on Audra Lynn’s worship set in the Prayer Room. Look up her set when your there.

      Love to hear more of your journey into the House of Prayer/Signs and Wonders reality. Are you just stepping into it? 🙂

  5. One Heart May 4, 2011 at 11:54 am

    Love Bill’s wisdom and leadership. Couldn’t agree more with his comment about knowing the difference between theory and true knowledge as we develop our personal history with God.
    Would love to be entered in your giveaway.
    Sharing on fb.
    Thank you.

    1. Greg Simas May 4, 2011 at 5:51 pm

      It’s so critical to recognize the difference. Thanks for sharing.

  6. Michael Zhuang May 4, 2011 at 1:47 pm


    1. Greg Simas May 4, 2011 at 5:52 pm

      Good, Michael. Glad you jumped in and commented. 😉

  7. Child of God May 4, 2011 at 2:27 pm

    Hi Greg,
    I don’t want to enter the draw, but I just wanted to let you know that I love listening to and reading Bill’s stuff! I believe he is a man who is following God and perusing Him with a passion. Thanks for this interview!

    Praying heaven here on earth! Praise God!


    1. Greg Simas May 4, 2011 at 5:56 pm

      Heaven break in and bring His kingdom! ! It’s happening in greater measure now than ever before! Love the days we are living in!

  8. Gina Hyatt May 4, 2011 at 4:19 pm

    This was great! I agree with a fellow commenter below, I wish it was a little longer. I love Bill’s simplicity. What he said about hindering the process really stuck out to me the most. Bowing to the urgent! Ahhhh!! Help Lord!!!

    1. Greg Simas May 4, 2011 at 5:59 pm

      The urgent keeps intimacy at bay. The ramifications aren’t pretty. I am with you, we cannot bow to the urgent.

  9. Maria C May 4, 2011 at 7:51 pm

    This is so true that “people who need significance will bow to the urgent and be pulled away from the process.” And I love he said we need to develop personal history for times of crisis. I gonna share that with my small group people this Friday night :))

    1. Greg Simas May 4, 2011 at 7:59 pm

      Hi Maria. I think of the parable Jesus told about building your house on the sand or on the rock. Developing a personal history in God is like building your house on the rock. Storms will come but that person will be secure!

      1. Maria C May 6, 2011 at 11:48 am

        All right!!!! Please allow me to use your words in my fellowship tonight~ We love you!!!!

        1. Greg Simas May 6, 2011 at 12:09 pm

          for sure 🙂 see you at @ConvergenceHOP:twitter again soon!

  10. Кристал Агне May 4, 2011 at 10:16 pm

    To me, “pray about everything” equals get God involve in everything! I will definitely put this into practice! Thanks for the interview!

    1. Greg Simas May 4, 2011 at 10:21 pm

      Great way to look at it! I say they both go hand in hand. 🙂

  11. Wendi4him May 4, 2011 at 10:49 pm

    So good… I love my brother! 🙂 such wisdom. Great Interview!

  12. charis May 5, 2011 at 1:20 pm

    great interview. developing a history with God strengthens our own faith muscle because if He did it before, He will do it again. the testimony of Jesus is a prophecy for our own lives and others lives as well. i love seeing Him be faithful over and over again.

    1. Greg Simas May 5, 2011 at 1:28 pm

      I need to stay in a place of abiding (Jn. 15). Keeping those past victories and promises fulfilled, in view. This moves me forward with amazing assurance and confidence!

  13. Josh Banko May 5, 2011 at 2:24 pm

    Thanks PG, good stuff. I liked this:

    Bill: Pray about everything – look to the Word for answers – cultivate a trust for the issues of life. I keep God’s promises before me continuously and give Him praise before the answer comes.

    So simple: Pray, study God’s word, and praise Him for His works!

    1. Greg Simas May 5, 2011 at 3:23 pm

      Josh, glad you “jumped in”. What’s important to me in what Bill said here is the tenacity, focus and diligence applied to each. This requires much time before Him! Huge!

      Hope to see you here often!!

  14. Cindy May 6, 2011 at 4:55 pm

    I always love to hear Bill’s heart. Great questions PG! Gives me more to contemplate 🙂

    1. Greg Simas May 6, 2011 at 5:56 pm

      Hi Cindy, glad you commented here. Feel free to in jump more often 😉 Trying to build a growing community to discuss and encourage one another around a One Pursuit Life. I know you share the same heart.

      BTW, it’s always great to here from Bill.

  15. Paul Kok Sep 8, 2014 at 11:41 am

    This is good encouraging stuff. I agree with Bill on the struggle of a need for significance will often bow to the urgent and be pulled away from the process.

    I find for me I serve the Lord better (well maybe not better but more motivated) is when other people take notice or commend me for it. My hearts cry is to learn to serve God where he has called me even when nobody is watching and not miss His plan for my life by carrying out my own agenda motivated by my wanting to be recognized.
    Lord forgive me for my selfish ways, Give me a new heart that wants to make you smile.

    1. Greg Simas Sep 9, 2014 at 9:57 am

      Thanks for your honesty, Paul. I believe that the need to be significant and to do something great is in all of us! The Lord has hardwired in us the need to be recognized and valued. It becomes a problem when the recognition desired is the foundation of our worth. It’s true that all we really need to know is that God is pleased. This is foundational. All other compliments is merely icing on the cake. Thanks for jumping in and sharing your thoughts.


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