Friday, 12 January 2018

Acts of the Holy Spirit

Scripture: Philippians 4 v 11 - 13: "Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.
 12  I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need.
 13  I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me."

The Book of Acts is called the Acts of the Apostles but it should really be called the Acts of the Holy Spirit.  It finishes at Chapter 28 but our lives and testimonies lived in His power should be a continuation i.e. Acts 29 and following.  Just saying.

Today the Lord brought to my remembrance something that happened to our family in the early years of our ministry.  It was Easter Sunday and we needed some family time so we decided to have a picnic about forty miles from home.

On our way we planned to visit a very vibrant ministry quite far from our town.   It was sure to be a powerful meeting.  When we arrived we were surprised to see only about thirty cars in the parking area.  Even more surprised to see so many empty seats in this big tent.

We got places near the front and soon realised that the worship was very flat so we started praying in tongues for the Holy Spirit to move upon the congregation.

My sons and I felt His Presence and eventually we settled down to hear the preacher.  Three times he said, I don't recognize the anointing that is on me, its not my usual anointing.  He was very puzzled.  He said he felt led to pray for farmers who were struggling in the terrible drought at that time.

During the previous week my sons and I had been led to pray for farmers in drought-stricken areas, very deep intercession.  The preacher asked if there were any farmers in the meeting who needed prayer.  One man started forward down the aisle just next to me.

His footsteps got slower and slower until, almost at my feet, he dropped to the ground, sobbing.  The preacher came to him and we all prayed for him to be strengthened and to rise up.  Which he did and began to rejoice and praise the Lord.

We found out later that this pastor had fallen into a sinful relationship with his secretary, causing two divorces and broken families.  He refused to repent and not long afterwards those two and their child were killed in a car crash.  A terrible waste of a man who had once been a very powerful and anointed minister.

My thought afterwards was did the Lord send us in that Sunday to pray for that farmer? Did He transfer our anointing to the backsliding preacher?  Was He trying to bring that man back to Himself?  The Holy Spirit sent us there for a reason, and maybe it was just to uplift that farmer.  

Be led of the Holy Spirit and see the amazing things He does.  You just have to be in the right place, don't need to actually do anything, and He makes things happen.

In Acts the Apostles were told to wait in Jerusalem in the upper room for the Holy Spirit to come upon them.  They were there and praying in one accord, in perfect harmony and agreement, for the Holy Spirit to come, when they heard the sound of a mighty rushing wind.  Upon their heads appeared visible flames of fire and they began to speak in tongues.

Many people in the street heard them exalting God in their own foreign languages.  Some thought they were drunk but it was only nine o'clock in the morning.  From that moment on they had power, boldness and courage to be witnesses for Jesus.  They now had His Spirit to teach and guide them.  It was said, These twelve turned the world upside down.

That is the desire of my heart ever since the Holy Spirit filled me.....turn the world upside down for Jesus!  

I knew a dear pastor's wife from Los Angeles.  The family came out as missionaries to Zimbabwe and passed through South Africa.  At a fund raiser for them she told me that she had once been in a coma for six months in ICU.

Every now and then she would be secretly woken from her coma by the Holy Spirit, to minister salvation to whoever was dying in the bed next to her. She lost count of how many were saved in this way.  Nothing is impossible or too difficult for God!  You just have to be in the right place at the right time for the Holy Spirit to use you.  And be willing to do what's needed.

Brothers and sisters we need to be ready to do exploits to win the world into eternal safety.   Only the Lord know His real plans for each one of us.  Sometimes we don't have a clue that we have done anything but  the day comes when we hear a testimony and know that in the chain reaction of the Holy Spirit, we were a link.

Prayer: Heavenly Father,  we love You and we ask with our whole hearts to be links in the chains that bring people of the world into Your Kingdom.  It is more important than any other thing we can do - souls are the whole reason Jesus died.  If He was willing to die for us, what are we willing to do in return?  Father, please use us! In Jesus' name. Amen.