The Afterglow

Well it is Monday again and it seems like the right time to sit and reflect on the events of the past week. This time last week I was sick and lacking any energy. The floor was torn up in my kitchen and we were finishing the last bit of preparation for the laying of the new floor. My mind was torn between the floor project and the guests that were scheduled to arrive with us on Thursday. We had also organized a night of ministry and worship at the Claymore in town which was a first for us to do. There was also a church annual business meeting that I had never attended before and then a few hours before was invited to do a devotional at the meeting. Just before going out the door to go to the meeting I received a call where I heard someone’s heart being overwhelmed with all that was ahead of her and was asked to pray. At that moment I too could identify with the feeling of being overwhelmed. So many unanswered questions were on my mind, and I did not feel like I had a firm grip on all the details of what was about to unfold. Even the devotional was going to be a step of faith as there was next to no time to really ponder anything at length so I felt ill prepared and vulnerable not to mention physically exhausted. There was this sense however that God was with me in this time and there was a quiet assurance inside telling me that those things would come together as my God is for me.
I was curious to watch His hand move in all this because I knew that He knew I was not enough for what was ahead. I read out the passages of scripture that I felt to share. As I looked over the people that were gathered I did not see a crowd grading me on my delivery or anything that I was doing at all but saw a family of people just loving me and one another. It was this unfamiliar feeling of being safe to be weak in flesh or unguarded. It was something new and I was so amazed. There was a sense of belonging regardless of whether I was at the top of my game in my performance or whether I offered anything at all other than who I was. This is something we should all find in our places of worship. It is His spirit moving among us.
The next day my father in law and I were ready to start the task of laying the new floor when a friend arrived with saw in hand offering to assist us and boy he did. He gave his whole day to work with us and yet he owed me no debt to be willing to do this. At supper his wife arrived with supper and biscuits in tow.. They also volunteered to be hosts to a couple of our friends who were part of the worship team for the Catch The Fire Meeting. By 8 p.m. all was complete and the floor looked great.
Well the day of our meeting arrived and there was a menu to plan and songs to get ready on power point and the room to set up and the worship team had to get all the equipment hauled in and set up and then practise for the first time playing together. They just seemed to gel together so easily. My Pastor and friend set up the Power Point and the projector so when the worship started everyone could follow along. She also took on two billets that were traveling with the Longs assisting them in the ministry and the many details that went along with that.
Finally it was time for the meeting and there were about 50 of us gathered. The worship team consisted of : Jennifer Bowman, Charl Eksteen, Jim Sutherland, Joey ? & Zach ? As Jennifer led the team in worship, the presence of God moved into the room. It was so beautiful that I just wanted it to continue for the night. We were indeed blessed. Then Steve walked us through the scriptures proving that Jesus healed no one apart from the power of the Holy Spirit opening the door for healing to flow out of those of us who have received the Holy Spirit within us. Then he activated the word by having those with pain get up and have the believers around them pray 3 different prayers for healing. A number of people were completely healed as well as a number of partial healings.
God was faithful to come and move among us. It was so sweet. In all this stuff I saw the body differently than I have in the past. I saw genuine kindness, a willingness to serve and to honor one another. I saw the body working together for the common good. I saw my wife serve in her gift of hospitality feeding supper to a guest list that rose to 11 people and it never stressed her in the least. She still was joyful in it all. I saw my own pastor be willing to serve and take a low place in all the activity. I am always amazed when I see how the Holy Spirit perfects character through our trials in life.
The body of Christ isn’t a perfect place nor is it always totally safe as there are always people flowing in or that hang in that are people of pain and suffering who have not submitted to the process of healing and therefore become a danger to the ones around them. But that being said there are a greater number who are willing to let healing come to their souls and to replace the lies of the past with the truth of the gospel. Lies need to be exposed because that is what gives Satan his beachhead to launch his assault on us and those around us.
Living by the Spirit’s Power Galatians 5
16 So I say, let the Holy Spirit guide your lives. Then you won’t be doing what your sinful nature craves. 17 The sinful nature wants to do evil, which is just the opposite of what the Spirit wants. And the Spirit gives us desires that are the opposite of what the sinful nature desires. These two forces are constantly fighting each other, so you are not free to carry out your good intentions. 18 But when you are directed by the Spirit, you are not under obligation to the law of Moses.
19 When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, the results are very clear: sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures, 20 idolatry, sorcery, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, division, 21 envy, drunkenness, wild parties, and other sins like these. Let me tell you again, as I have before, that anyone living that sort of life will not inherit the Kingdom of God.
22 But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things!
24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have nailed the passions and desires of their sinful nature to his cross and crucified them there. 25 Since we are living by the Spirit, let us follow the Spirit’s leading in every part of our lives. 26 Let us not become conceited, or provoke one another, or be jealous of one another.


One thought on “The Afterglow

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  1. The people who ‘flow in or hang in’ are often there because they are looking for a safe place. Those coming in who are not ready to submit to the healing process won’t be a danger if we as part of Christ’s body are receiving form the Head. In fact we should be a ‘safe haven’ for them as they proceed to the place of healing. It’s a process for each of us … even the journey to submission is a process.
    On the other hand, if we (as His body) aren’t where we should be, I believe we become a danger to those unwilling or unable to submit. Our assumptions and presumptions about those we deem unwilling can cut deep and cause greater wounds in need of healing. There is also a belief among many in the body of Christ today that we have to be super careful to not say anything to those in the body who aren’t living in submission to Him in fear that we might offend them, or drive them away. That in itself can be just as dangerous to them. If we see a friend or family member walking blindly towards a steep cliff would we not warn them?
    Those unsubmitted to, or even hardened to receiving from Christ can definitely be an annoyance, a hinderance and even an inconvenience but I don’t think they are ever a danger to Christ’s body because they aren’t a danger to Christ. A healthy body should be a place of safety even to those we consider ‘a danger’. All may not submit to His healing, but we need to allow Him to work in them and to minister to the places that have given way to their unwillingness.
    It’s good to be part of that imperfect body with you. It’s good to know that there is still hope for my places of unsubmitted pain. Thanks for being one of those willing to allow those flowing in to proceed from a place of unsubmitted pain to joyful release. There may always be those steadily building their walls to protect and preserve their areas of hurt But there will also be those with grateful hearts who were able to finally let go because they were welcomed into that place where Christ’s fragrance flowed. Maybe I’m just a ‘bleeding heart’ but to me that one who finally finds a place to allow the deepest scars to be revealed and healed when no one thought they would … that makes it worthwhile to step outside our comfort zone and take a risk for the kingdom. 🙂

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