The Holy Spirit I know
“Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. To one there is given through the Spirit the message (word) of wisdom, to another the message (word) of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another the ability to distinguish between spirits (discernment), to another the ability to speak in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues. All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and He gives them to each man, just as He determines.” – 1 Corinthians 12:7
I was reading this passage this morning and I was taken back to my revival experience during my childhood.
Thirty plus years ago, my parents were Pastors of a little Assemblies of God church in Lapaz, Bayabas, Surigao del Sur and all of these works of the Holy Ghost were present in that small congregation.
When my parents took over, the church had a lot of issues. Many lived in hurt. No one wanted to go back to church even after they talked to many of them and discussed about healing and reconciliation. It was a very difficult start. On top of that, my dad got sick with hepatitis B and it made it impossible to see God restore this house.
But instead of giving up, my parents sought God deeper. My dad prayed and fasted for weeks. Intercessors pray almost all day everyday. And after a few months, we started seeing God move.
- There were tongues and interpretation every Sunday.
- There were words of wisdom and words of knowledge.
- There were prophecy and the spirit of discernment manifested.
- There was healing (my dad was healed himself).
- There was miraculous powers.
- I can recall a homosexual (which was very rare those days) giving his life to Jesus. There were confrontations of the works of the devil (casting our demons)…
- There were dreams and visions…
The church grew little by little each month. People were united and generous. The appetite for evangelism and discipleship grew that church members weren’t told to do it nor an event was organized, it was out of people’s burning hearts for the lost and genuine compassion. There was an amazing awareness of God and His favor was upon His people.
One special memory I had was when God came down in a cloud one Sunday morning and touched as all. Adults and kids alike. I was 8 years old, but I was still recall everything that time vividly. It was the first time that God became very personal to me. He wasn’t the God in the Bible stories my mom told me about anymore. He was tangible and real that He came into my heart and become my Lord and Savior.
This is why no matter how any times I was confronted with the modern gospel brining the idea that His move is not anymore present today because it was left with the first disciples, it doesn’t hold true in my heart. Because I have personally seen him moved. I am a witness of His power and reality. 1 Corinthians 12:7 wasn’t just a dead scroll to me. I have seen it alive and active changing lives and bring people closer to the heart of God.
Holy Spirit, Where are You?
Thirty years after however, His move started to diminish… The church is more “self-gratifying” than “God-glorifying”. It was more about the self and not about His Lordship. And yes, I believe in emotional healing, etc. But I also wonder why church history doesn’t record much of this associated with revival. It was always seeking God wholeheartedly that led them to His supernatural takeovers that changed the world.
Can this be the reason why we rarely see 1 Corinthians 12:7 at work today? Like come to think of it, can you name one church at the top of your mind right now that’s moving in these gifts? Bethel Church is one for me. But how about here in the Philippines? Can you give one? A church that prophesying, healing, working in miraculous powers, tongues and interpretation, words of wisdom and knowledge, and spirit of discernment? Where is it? Why do we RARELY see these today?
Is it because we are more “self-gratifying” than “God-glorifying”?
- We focus more on our #OOTDs than the condition of our hearts.
- We are all about “good worship” than His presence.
- We are for ending on time than receiving from heaven.
- Evangelisms, crusades and gatherings are more about numbers than the voice of heaven.
What a dreadful generation we have become! We gather in His name but do we really what Him there? Has church become more of a duty than a delight? If these aren’t true then why aren’t we seeing the Holy Spirit at work in our midst today? Fruits tell our roots right? Thus where are the prophesying, healing, working in miraculous powers, tongues and interpretation, words of wisdom and knowledge, and spirit of discernment?
Can you lead me to one in your city?