Momentum (Christ – centred, Spirit – empowered, Mission – focused)
Over the past several months, I have witnessed an increased responsiveness to the work of the Holy Spirit in our churches. After my sermon, I often extend an invitation to come forward to be “filled with the Holy Spirit.”
In one setting, more than one hundred people streamed to the front, falling on their faces before God. Following the encounter, I spoke with a young man in his early twenties. He said, “I asked the Holy Spirit to fill me today, and I think it actually happened. I didn’t know what to expect, but I could sense all of the hindrances, all of the roadblocks to complete surrender in my life melting away. I was completely free to experience the fullness of Jesus. Does that sound right to you?”
I smiled and embraced this young man and said, “O yeah…that sounds right to me!”
When the glory of God descends on a person’s heart, resistance is removed, and the renovating power of God is released.
A few weeks later, I was in another Alliance Church, and as people came forward, I noticed a woman beside me who had a crutch with her. That morning, I had been speaking from Acts 3.
Peter said to the man who was crippled from birth: ““Silver or gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk” (Acts 3:6).
I made the comment that I wish I could have been there for that moment. God granted my wish, as a few moments later, I witnessed this lady beside me get up and walk away, leaving her crutch behind.
I was tempted to stop her and give it back, when I realized that she had left it there because she had been healed.
She shared with me that in the middle of the sermon, she was instantly healed. She just knew it. She stood up and went to the back of the church to test it out, and sure enough, she was completely restored.
She came forward to thank Jesus and leave her crutch behind. I watched her walk freely without even so much as a limp.
She was rejoicing and praising God for His amazing, supernatural intervention.
These are just two small but significant pictures of God on the move in our churches. I wonder if they are signalling to us a tipping point of renewed expectation in God’s supernatural power.
Every day, I talk to people who need a renovation of their soul or long for the healing of their bodies. I find myself praying more passionately than ever for holy hunger to invade our churches.
In his book “Church on Fire”, Fred Hartley writes, “When God chooses to manifest His presence, He is never arbitrary or careless. He always prepares His people in advance…for this reason part of the prevenient, preparatory work of God is to first give us holy hunger, followed by a desire to pray.”
I long to see the front of Alliance Churches littered with crutches (real and figurative) left behind by people who have been healed physically, emotionally, and spiritually.
I am sure that you are longing for the same. As I was pulling away from the church where this lady had been healed, I watched as she got into her car filled with joy.
I caught a glimpse of her husband carrying her crutch over his shoulder. It was like he was carrying a trophy of God’s marvelous grace and power. I want to call you to holy hunger! I want to call you to desperate prayer! The day is coming when we will leave our crutches behind.
Spirit of God, come. We wade in the waters of your presence. We relinquish control to you. We yield our rights and privileges to you. Take us and fill us. Take control of our mind, will, and emotions. Baptize us. Immerse us. Saturate us. Take back from the enemy any ground we have given over. Father, right now, we receive the fullness of the Holy Spirit in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.
“He is given to us as our wonderful Counselor and also as our Mighty God” (A.B. Simpson, “Walking in the Spirit”, p. 8.)
Please find the original version in C&MA website