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**** church notes from this morning – Pastor Peter preaching (was soooo good!)
i love what peter shared – that we have to live in the new life and let God be God – to let Him have His way – no other gods before Him – to allow Him to do an extreme makeover on our “home” – to let Him move in to every room of our life! Revival needs ROOM!
1 the world needs revival
2 revival must be in the church
3 revival begins in me
4 revival needs room
Acts 1:4-8 – 4 instructions
1 stay where you are
2 wait for God
3 be clothed with power
4 THEN be a witness
Imagine if the early disciples didn’t wait for Pentecost like jesus had said…
Are you ready to let go of who you thought you were to become who God wants you to be?
The first priority of revival is the first commandment : you shall have no other God but Him
We can have other things BEFORE God
What do you go to in your life before God?
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. Galatians 5:22-25
i love the phrase LET US KEEP IN STEP WITH THE SPIRIT
my prayer today is that i will keep in step with His leading and His loving and His ways
that i would be a fruity fruitful christian
that the characteristics that God delights in would be evident and growing in my life
and that i would always walk with Him
knowing His love and mercy and faithfulness and goodness
to and through me
let me not walk my own way
let me not walk to the left of the right
but in step with the Holy Spirit
So first week back at school… everyone survive?
We had a really nice holiday in Turangi, went rockclimbing, fishing, through a huge maze in taupo, played a lot of board games, got addicted to icarly and did touristy things. Good times. But when we pulled out of the house we realized we had forgotten to plan for one very important thing. low techness. No usb plug in the car. Which meant that lifefm ran out once we hit the bombays and then it was either white noise, bad radio, or cds. Now I’m a mother. Which means my car has two kinds of cds in one particular ratio. 90% kid cds. 10% my cds. Which means when there are 10 cds that can fit down the pockets of the side doors… only one is mine. I ignored the other 9 and put on karnaga by cindy ruakere. For those that haven’t heard cindy – she is a fierce maori worshipper and she rocks it. Her cd became our holiday anthem.
And it stirred my heart.
How many of you know that as much as we know Gods love is unconditional and He is amazing and His grace is everlasting and He has saved us, how we can look out the window and the heavens declare the majesty of God, how we can drift into our own space of life and let the embers die? Now I’m not saying I was cold… but I was not white hot.
The holiday was like a turbo fan on my heart heat I am more passionate now about jesus. I am more passionate about other people being passionate about jesus. I am more passionate now about revival.
He said to me, Prophesy to these bones and say to them, O you dry bones, hear the word of the Lord. Thus says the Lord God to these bones: Behold, I will cause breath and spirit to enter you, and you shall live;
I will wrap you with muscles and skin, and I will put breath and spirit in you, and you dry bones shall live; and you shall know, understand, and realize that I am the Lord
So I prophesied as I was commanded; and as I prophesied, there was a thundering noise and behold, a shaking and trembling and a rattling, and the bones came together, bone to its bone.
I looked, and tendons and flesh appeared on them and skin covered them, but there was no breath or spirit in them.
Also He said to me, “Prophesy to the breath, prophesy, son of man, and say to the breath, ‘Thus says the Lord God: “Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe on these slain, that they may live.”’” So I prophesied as He commanded me, and breath came into them, and they lived, and stood upon their feet, an exceedingly great army.
“Instead of hiding from the world or being overwhelmed by the evil of it, we need to strengthen our spiritual cores and trust in the power of the spirit at work in us.”
~ Christine Caine
Now an angel of the Lord said to Philip, "Go south to the road-the desert road-that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza." So he started out, and on his way he met an Ethiopian eunuch, an important official in charge of all the treasury of Candace, queen of the Ethiopians. This man had gone to Jerusalem to worship, and on his way home was sitting in his chariot reading the book of Isaiah the prophet. The Spirit told Philip, "Go to that chariot and stay near it." Acts 8:26-29
i love Philip’s availability to God.
He was a man led by the Holy Spirit, and invited interruptions. The interruptions led to this Ethiopian leader becoming a believer, and who knows the follow on through affect of this one man that Philip talked to.
Be open to those divine appointments, those moments where the Holy Spirit leads you to talk to someone – be it a stranger as in Philips case, or a friend or a work mate. Be sensitive to the Holy Spirit, because where the Holy Spirit leads, He is moving!
i always count it such a privilege that God would choose to work in me and through me – as a witness to His reality – a demonstration of His love and grace.
A distinct memory i have is when the Spirit nudged me to talk to a guy outside our local library. I had just dropped some books in the return slot when a shadow passed behind me. i turned around and was about to go to my car when God said, talk to that guy. That guy was about 6foot6, Polynesian, with low riders and sunglasses on. so off i went. “excuse me” i said, looking up up up up up! at the end of the conversation i prayed for the guy and he took his glasses off. his eyes were misted over. i’m glad i said yes to the interruption, yes to the Holy Spirit.
those interruptions are opportunity for God to work in you and through you to communicate to another person. Philip explained the gospel contained in the passage of Isaiah. you might be nudged to encourage someone, tell them your story, give hope, speak life. God may give you insight and revelation into their life and destiny.
lets be bold and lets step out!
My eyes fail from weeping,
I am in torment within;
my heart is poured out on the ground
because my people are destroyed,
because children and infants faint
in the streets of the city. Lamentations 2:11
i was moved by this verse last night… wow it gripped my heart and stirred me to pray… my heart is poured out because children and infants faint from hunger in the streets… people destroyed, people lost, they need truth and life that only Jesus can give… they need salvation and hope.
This I recall to my mind,
Therefore I have hope.
Through the Lord’s mercies we are not consumed,
Because His compassions fail not.
They are new every morning;
Great is Your faithfulness.
“The Lord is my portion,” says my soul,
“Therefore I hope in Him!” Lamentations 3:21-24
i will pray and i will remember and i will have hope because God is great and good. His salvation is real and powerful. His compassion fails not. He is merciful. Great is His faithfulness. I will have hope in Him, hope in His mercy, hope in His salvation. This is why i pray, this is why i seek Him, this is why i pour my life out.
Stir my heart to pray, O Lord.
Holy Spirit, renew a passion in me for the lost.
Draw me closer, that i may shine for you.
Thank you for your grace, your new mercy, your everlasting love.
One day Peter and John were going up to the temple at the time of prayer—at three in the afternoon. Now a man crippled from birth was being carried to the temple gate called Beautiful, where he was put every day to beg from those going into the temple courts. When he saw Peter and John about to enter, he asked them for money. Peter looked straight at him, as did John. Then Peter said, “Look at us!” So the man gave them his attention, expecting to get something from them.
Then Peter said, “Silver or gold I do not have, but what I have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk.” Taking him by the right hand, he helped him up, and instantly the man’s feet and ankles became strong. He jumped to his feet and began to walk. Then he went with them into the temple courts, walking and jumping, and praising God. When all the people saw him walking and praising God, they recognized him as the same man who used to sit begging at the temple gate called Beautiful, and they were filled with wonder and amazement at what had happened to him. acts 3:1-10
Peter and John are normal Christians.
They are ordinary men. Peter and john were fishermen. Yet the extraordinary was going on in their life. They had encountered God. They had been saved and filled with the Holy Spirit. They were living for a different reason now.
And they had something to give away – they were do havers.
They said to the man – the man who had NEVER walked, who spent his life begging and depending upon the pity of others – silver and gold we don’t have, but what we DO HAVE we give you.
What did they have?
What is that extraordinary thing that God has given YOU and how can it be released in your life to impact others? That extraordinary thing that God has given you to be released to impact others is… wait for it – GOD!
What Peter and John had was the knowledge that God was real and that He had the power to heal that man. They had faith that if they did what Jesus said – lay hands on the sick they would be healed. They believed that Jesus came to destroy the works of the devil and that by His wounds we are healed. They believed what Isaiah 53 said about who God is and what God can do.
They believed But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. 2 Corinthians 4:7
They believed Acts 1:8 that they had received power when the Holy Spirit came upon them in Jerusalem.
Luke 24:29 puts it as “clothed with power from on high.”
Power is for a purpose – and The Word says – we got the power!
They believed John 14:12 I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing. He will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father.
You know, Jesus said – I only do what I see the father do –I tell you the truth, he said, the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does. For the Father loves the Son and shows him all he does. (John 5:19-20)
How do WE know what the Father does and wants to do and is doing? We look at what Jesus did and the revelation of the right here and now by the Holy Spirit within us. Jesus is our model, we follow Him, we do what we do, we copy Him. Paul said that – imitate me as I imitate Christ. Lets copy Jesus! And Jesus challenged us – that we would DO even greater things that these because the Holy Spirit lives within us! Now that is a challenge and a half that smacks me around – GREATER THINGS!
They believed Jesus when he called them in matthew 10:1 He called his twelve disciples to him and gave them authority to drive out evil spirits and to heal every disease and sickness.
You know, just to point out the obvious – THOSE passages weren’t written yet – they were being lived! The things that are written in the NT are things they learned by revelation from the Holy Spirit and things they did and lived. This is from experience, from real life! They believed what Jesus told them and taught them and modelled to them and promised them. Jesus taught them about normal Christian life.
They believed and they did.
And the man they spoke to immediately felt strength in his legs and ankles and jumped up and could walk and jump and dance and skip. Which in itself is a feat because most people that have an accident and are paralysed have months and months of rehab to get just stand… he went from nothing to fully totally remarkably healed in a finger click. Only God can do that! Only the reality of God can do that. Only the power of God can do that!
Only the power of God can heal a broken heart, can set someone free, can change someone’s life in an instant. Only God can bring real joy and real hope and real peace.
Just because its 2000 years later doesn’t mean the plan has changed or that the power has run out! In fact – we should be seeing so much more because its all multiplied. In the start it was just Jesus – then he died and rose again and went back to heaven and then the Holy Spirit came at Pentecost and all of a sudden ordinary people were filled with the extraordinary power of God – not just one Jesus – but now His followers, with the same mission as Jesus!
The plan has always been to know God and make Him known – He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. And these signs will accompany those who believe: In my name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up snakes with their hands; and when they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all; they will place their hands on sick people, and they will get well.” Mark 16:15-18
That’s our call. That’s our normality. That’s our reality.
The cool part is if you read on:
19After the Lord Jesus had spoken to them, he was taken up into heaven and he sat at the right hand of God. 20Then the disciples went out and preached everywhere, and the Lord worked with them and confirmed his word by the signs that accompanied it.
What happened on the steps by the temple gate is normal Christian life.
Peter and john were DO HAVERS. They had something within them ready. They knew the Holy Spirit was the one with the power – but that He uses our bodies and our mouths and our prayers and our doing and our obedience and our hands and feet.
Peter and John did their part. They reached out and declared the power of God. And God did His part, He came and fulfilled His promises of power and healing and deliverance. He is the power in all our doing. He is the do have. We have the Holy Spirit dwelling within us. We believed that God would works with us and confirm His Word and our faith in Him with signs like healing and supernatural encounter.
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. Ephesians 3:20-21
His power that is at work within us… its at work within us to work THROUGH us. Immeasurably more than we can ask or imagine.
Peter and John took God at His word. Jesus had told them that they were called to do this. That this was how they were to live their lives. As witnesses and living demonstrations of the reality and power of God. They had faith not in their own ability but in the supernatural enabling of God through them.
Those promises Jesus made to peter and john are promises valid to us too. They are His Word. It’s not about any power we have – remember, we’re jars of clay.
Do you know that you’re a do haver?
Do you know that God has called you and more importantly empowered you?
So how does this work in our real life?
1: Know you’re called. If you’re breathing you’re called.
2: Know the promises in The Word. Promises are truth you can rely on. Know who God is and how big and powerful He is. Stir your faith in those things. If your mind is fritzing out about praying for someone to be healed or about talking to someone about God then deal to that lie, just saying, ya hear me.
3: Take the opportunities around you. Do you work with people? Go to uni with people? Go to school with people? Ride the bus with people? Shop with people? Peter and John were going to the temple like they did everyday. Everyday you are with people. Be intentionally aware of the reality of God wanting to bust out of you to touch others….
4: Something interesting to consider, over in acts 4 verse 13 it reads ”When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus.”
What made these ordinary men different was that they had been with Jesus.
I am unschooled and ordinary and I have been with Jesus.
The challenge for all of us is to live intentional and to redefine living and living for God, to redefine normal Christian life. We want to live the adventure. We hear about people doing great things – and doesn’t your heart burn to do them too? Mine does! Sometimes I think the only big difference between people having the adventure that I read about and my life is the DOING part… just saying…
God’s plan is to reach the people around us – our family and our friends – by using Christians. He loves to demonstrate His reality and power – His Word says so. Lets man up and have faith and do it! This world wont change until we rise up and really be who God has filled us and made us and empowered us to be! We’re stretching towards the greatness of God!
When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them. Acts 2: 1-4
i love the Holy Spirit and His work in me and to me and through me and for me. i love how God chooses and uses ordinary people to do extraordinary things for His fame and glory. i live to know Him and make Him known. i feel very blest to live in an age where the Holy Spirit was given to the believers, all believers, not just holy prophets or leaders, but common ordinary every day believers.
one of my most favourite verses in the bible is 2 Corinthians 4:7 – But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us.
the all surpassing power of God IS GOD – IS the Holy Spirit who lives within us!
Ephesians 3:20 puts it this way: Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us…
the Holy Spirit lives in me. wow. that’s huge. audacious. awesome!
He lives in me as a guarantee of the promises of God for eternity and He’s in me to empower me to serve God and shine for Him. He is the potter and i am the clay and He is in me shaping me and transforming me and making me who God dreams me to be. He’s in me to enable me to walk with God and know God.
again another most favourite passage:
But as it is written:
“ Eye has not seen, nor ear heard,
Nor have entered into the heart of man
The things which God has prepared for those who love Him.”
But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God. For what man knows the things of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so no one knows the things of God except the Spirit of God. Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God. 1 Corinthians 2:9-11
i love the BUT GOD HAS REVEALED THEM TO US THROUGH HIS SPIRIT.
The Holy Spirit reveals to us who God is – His ways, His heart, His love, His guidance, His comfort…
But the Counsellor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. John 14:26
But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you. All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will take from what is mine and make it known to you. John 15:13-15