Recently we have been asking the question of why our current churches don’t display the same power as the early Acts churches did. Are we wimpy Christians? That’s not what the Word says. God says the same power that dwells in Jesus dwells in us.
Then why the lack of power?
Why the absence of miracles?
In researching this, there are many trains of thought out there. Some say we don’t pray enough. Some say we don’t fast enough. Some say we are not obedient enough. It goes on and on. Here are my thoughts, random as they may be.
Perhaps we have been too busy feeding our flesh to respond to God’s power. Let’s face it, we are human. Our flesh likes to be fed. Tell me a feel good message with what I can do, throw in a little emotion to get me worked up for an hour. Yeah, that sounds cozy. And so it goes, from week to week. No challenges, no goals, no vision, just feel good messages. It’s draining, and the church is asleep. I’m talking to me first here. We are lazy, me included.
I want more. I’m tired of the same old routine. There has to be more! I don’t know about you, but I am ready for a Holy Ghost Revival!
In my reading this morning God brought me here;
You’ll remember, friends, that when I first came to you to let you in on God’s master stroke, I didn’t try to impress you with polished speeches and the latest philosophy. I deliberately kept it plain and simple: first Jesus and who he is; then Jesus and what he did—Jesus crucified.I was unsure of how to go about this, and felt totally inadequate—I was scared to death, if you want the truth of it—and so nothing I said could have impressed you or anyone else. But the Message came through anyway.
God’s Spirit and God’s power did it, which made it clear that your life of faith is a response to God’s power, not to some fancy mental or emotional footwork by me or anyone else. – 1 Corinthians 2:1-3 MSG
Perhaps we are not seeing the power of God because we are too busy feeding our flesh with mental and emotional footwork and not responding to God’s power. Maybe we are selfish and make it all about us, when it’s really all about God.
How do we change?
How do we stop feeding our flesh and respond to the Spirit?
Maybe, we should get off the stage, get off the platform and let God lead. Maybe we should let go of our plans and programs. Of course that would mean giving up control. Let’s face it, we like to be in charge. We like to control things – even our services. We think that if we have it all planned out we will know exactly what will happen.
But isn’t that how we got into this mess?
And how can God display His power and miracles among us if we are too busy to even respond to Him when He is already there in our midst?
Let’s face it, nobody likes being ignored, especially if you’re the King of Kings.
Lord, let us let go of our agendas. Let us come together and watch and hear what You have done in our midst.
I like John Bevere’s thought from his new book, “Killing Kryptonite“.
“Take Action Perhaps you have seen the movie Gladiator and remember hearing General Maximus shout, “Stay together! As one!” and you saw the victories that strategy brought. It’s no secret that the most effective military strategy is divide and conquer. Jesus knew this well and taught that a house divided against itself cannot stand (see Matthew 12:25). When the body of Christ is divided in its loyalties to Christ, it is weakened as a whole. This means that one of the greatest things you can do for the worldwide impact of the church is to live your own life wholly devoted to Jesus’s cause. This means dedicating all your regular, everyday activities to God as worship to Him. God wants your whole life, not just your Sunday mornings. If you are not living your entire life—work, family, hobbies, etc.—as worship to God, repent today. Ask Jesus to give you vision for what a lifestyle of worship looks like in your life. Write down what He shows or tells you and ask God’s Spirit to fill you afresh as you dedicate yourself fully to Him. 4 Contagious Kryptonite The way God designed our bodies is a model for understanding our lives together as a church.”
In Ephesians 6 all of the weapons we have at our disposal are forward facing as Johns says. Our backs are exposed. Have you ever seen the movie Gladiator? The men move together as one unit. They protect each other. They cover each other’s backs.
And that about wraps it up. God is strong, and he wants you strong. So take everything the Master has set out for you, well-made weapons of the best materials. And put them to use so you will be able to stand up to everything the Devil throws your way. This is no afternoon athletic contest that we’ll walk away from and forget about in a couple of hours. This is for keeps, a life-or-death fight to the finish against the Devil and all his angels. Be prepared. You’re up against far more than you can handle on your own. Take all the help you can get, every weapon God has issued, so that when it’s all over but the shouting you’ll still be on your feet. Truth, righteousness, peace, faith, and salvation are more than words. Learn how to apply them. You’ll need them throughout your life. God’s Word is an indispensable weapon. In the same way, prayer is essential in this ongoing warfare. Pray hard and long. Pray for your brothers and sisters. Keep your eyes open. Keep each other’s spirits up so that no one falls behind or drops out.
Ephesians 6:10-13 MSG
Perhaps we are not displaying the power of God in our services because instead of covering each other’s backs and fighting like Gladiators we are too busy stabbing our fellow brothers and sisters in the back.
Ouch. Yes. Help us all Lord.