Written on Saturday May 30, 2020
TOMORROW IS PENTACOST. The day of the mighty winds. And tongues of fire. And the power of the Spirit, overtaking the Church of God, the Body of Christ.
“Go into all the world and preach the Gospel, and heal the sick,” the risen Jesus had said to His friends. “But don’t go until you have received power from on high.” And so it came to the Church, gathered as it was in Jerusalem. And it was strange. There was noise, like the roaring of a mighty windstorm. There were shouts of praise, physical movement, wonderments. There was strange behavior – the praising of God in many languages.
People came running, from all over Jerusalem, to gape, and gasp at what was happening. There was even fire, tongues of flame above the heads of the followers of Jesus.
Observers said: “They’re out of their heads. They’ve been overtaken. They’ve had too much to drink.” But Peter stood and said, “No, they’ve been overwhelmed by the very Spirit of God. We are witnessing an invasion of The Spirit. God has come and gripped their lives. This is the beginning of New Life. Pay attention! God has come – IN HIS SPIRIT – to take over the world.”
It was the amazing beginning of Jesus’ work in the world. Work that would be done “Not by might, not by power, but by My Spirit says the Lord.”
People came flocking. Something new, something wonderful, was happening. It was the BIRTHDAY OF THE CHURCH. It was the day of power being given, for the work of the Church.
It has always been the Church’s strangest day. The day of God, taking over His Church. It was the beginning of the ministry. The day of the sending of the Church into the world, with new power.
“I will send my Spirit,” Jesus had said. And so it was.
And all this long Pentecostal Saturday, we have been watching the news stories of Minneapolis and St. Paul, under siege: The streets wild, people from everywhere, coming in, caught up in a whirlwind of moving – a human storm, defying order and police control, smashing store windows along Lake Street. Lighting fires. Creating a city out of control. A city roiled by emotion. Angry rage everywhere. People fearing for their city and themselves. The Governor imposing a curfew. Police, and Highway Patrol, and the National Guard, helping to restore order.
The late afternoon sun lowers in the west. The Governor is soon to speak over radio and television.
What does it all mean? A city swept up in anger. Wind and fire. Shouting. Defiance. Fear.
A historic pandemic to begin with. And human emotions out of control. This is God’s Day, with His people struggling to win the day. To still the rage. To restore order. To bring peace.
Surely, it is not the coming of God in His mighty Spirit. But maybe it is the calling of God, giving us a chance to confront the rampant forces of evil, even new fears of disease, as well as the uncontrolled rages of our fellow citizens.
What if this odd, historic, coming together of two strange phenomena at once is a “sign unto us.” God’s using wind and fire, noise and confusion, to grasp our attention? To stop us in the middle of our weariness with the lengthening days of the pandemic to say to us: “It is time for you to look to Me, and realize that these disruptions are calling you away from yourselves, to take these disruptions of “normal” life as a sign for you to look back to Me to see if it’s time, to look back to Me for the answers in life, and even to see in Pentecostal wind and fire that I am ready and willing you to the most exciting work of your life: LIVING FOR ME. And receiving the power I offer you to follow Me, and do My transforming work?
Daring to see these days as a heavenly message to us for new work and direction in our life may be a sign of God’s great gifts to us of a Pentecostal call to us to a new, free receiving of the Spirit, and undertaking the life and work of the Spirit.
Could it be? For joy of power in the Spirit,
Arthur A Rouner, Jr -
|Arthur Rouner Ministries||
ARTHUR ROUNER MINISTRIES