Tonight I was able to use some of the material I had worked on so hard to be a part of the sermon. I say "some" because of the 5 typewritten pages of material, I used 2 illustrations and 2 sermon passages. The rest was not what I had planned, rather, what God wanted to be said. And powerful it was! With attendance of about 40 people, a father and his very young son came to the alter. A stalwart of the church that most would perceive as being one who wouldn't do such a thing, came to the alter for prayer. A woman whom most would think had it all together, came to the alter for prayer.
When the service was over, one man who I thought slept through the service shook my hand so vigorously that I thought he was going to take it home with him. His wife fell into my arms and thanked me for letting God talk with her. WOW! I could give 20 more inspirational anecdotes but the thing that really got to me was when the church was almost empty, and we were ready to turn off the lights and head home, 3 came back into the church for prayer. A half hour later we were working on a plan to bring the spouse of one who came back to grow to yearn to have Christ in his heart. What an honor and privilege to be approached for prayer like that. I was moved in the Spirit, deeply.
I've never been one to do the revival thing. I always thought it was hokey, if you know what I mean. But being charged with bringing revival to our small church I've grown immensely under the umbrella of the challenge. I'm being revived in the process. I share with the attendees that when I point a finger to them saying they're too much consumed with feeding the flesh...3 fingers are pointing back at me. I'm as much challenged and changed by revival as those to whom I'm preaching. What an unexpected thing.
I don't know if any of the Methodist preachers/pastors who may stumble across this blog are equally impacted. I would hope so. God isn't through with any of us. As the bumper sticker says....."Sorry, God isn't thru with me yet". Whatever our position may be, may we all be stricken by the notion that we are a work in progress, and that God isn't through with us yet. At least, I've come to understand, He's not through with me.
The power of the Holy Spirit was evident tonight. Arms were raised in praise, tears were shed in joy, and lives were changed. At least a few, in a rural area. But it's one person at a time through which the kingdom is brought down for us all to revel in. I thank God for the few who made a BIG impact in my ministry. May I be more greatly used for His purposes. I hope that this sharing empowers someone else to be equally challenged and utilized by God, the Father, Jesus the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen, amen, and Amen!