because our gospel came to you not simply with words but also with power, with the Holy Spirit and deep conviction. You know how we lived among you for your sake. (1 Thessalonians 1:5 NIV)
I so want to see this happen, the gospel going out not just in words but also in power. We are very articulate, very clever at communicating but sometimes at the expense of the ministry of the Holy Spirit. We need to be clear, effective and efficient communicators but only if we are also able to minister with His power as well. We cannot make Him turn up when we speak, but our lifestyle and our prayer lives are conducive to His manifestation. I feel that the current climate of Christianity has settled for a brand that is far less than what it promises. I don’t want my ears to be tickled by preaching, I want to see the real deal. I want to see the stuff happening! Signs, wonders, miracles, healing the sick, raising the dead, the lame walking, the blind seeing, the deaf hearing, captives being set free and broken hearts healed. Maybe I’m greedy, but I really do want to see it
In 1 Corinthians 14 it talks about eagerly desiring spiritual gifts especially the gift of prophecy. I love the prophetic, but don’t just eagerly desire the prophetic be greedy for it all! Maybe greed conjures up the wrong images in your head, but the principle stands. Eagerly desire the things of the Spirit, His gifts, His manifest presence. Eagerly desire translates as vehemently contend, this is not passive, this is a very active practice. This is the beginning of the journey to seeing His manifest presence. Create a lifestyle of His presence, then wherever you are, you will overflow with who he is, whether in preaching the gospel or going to the supermarket.