I guess this is a follow up to my last blog post about the joys of working with the Holy Spirit.
Every guy wants more power. If my car has 200 horse power, I want it to have 250 (or 500). That’s just the way guys are. I know you ladies want gas mileage efficiency and you want to it to look pretty, but guys just want more power.
Tim the Tool Man Taylor epitomized guys on the old sitcom “Home Improvement.” “More power – ah, ah, ah.”
The church started with lots of power. It’s really sad to think about how little power it has now.
Jesus said, “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” Acts 1:8
And they didn’t have to wait long.
“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)
I didn’t speak in another language this week, nor did I do a Michael Jackson impression.
But I’ve been feeling God’s supernatural movement again this week.
I’m on a plane coming back from LA where I’ve been tracking down some little nudgings from God. Sometimes it’s just about hearing the quiet whisper of God and following it. Sometimes it’s just indigestion. And sometimes God says, “Welcome – let’s party!”
My meetings this week were about Africa – Malawi in particular. And God said, “Let’s Party.” Last year Rick Warren said, “Hey, the President of Malawi called and wants to do the P.E.A.C.E. Plan in Malawi like we have done in Rwanda. He turned to me and Bill Brown and said “Why don’t you guys take it?” We said, “Okay.” (Well, to be fair, usually what happens is I say, “Okay,” and Bill starts to have indigestion).
But it felt like, if Rick thought we could handle this country (once we figured out where it was), we should be okay. Turns out it’s a small country.
So this was a meeting of the minds at Saddleback about Malawi. They recently had an election and the President, who asked for help, is no longer in power. We have a lot of things to work through. But if you could have had a “fly on the wall” seat next to me the past few months as God has been bringing people together for this, it would blow your mind.
I took my friend Rick Rusaw with me. His church in Colorado (LifeBridge), may jump in and help us. He’s got connections to some crazy things already going on in Malawi – both in the world of economics and agriculture. I took a new friend, Joe, with me who is an awesome business man from the western suburbs who already is very connected in Malawi. Rick Warren and Joe are in DC next week with all the Presidents of the African countries.
I’m going to Rwanda in a couple of weeks with Joe and the Saddleback team, and we’re going to be inviting another group of pastors to figure out how to jump in with us as well as meeting with some of the church leaders from Malawi.
And all I’m saying is that as I sit on a plane and ponder the past couple of days – it’s just – again, like the NACC, – another example of trying to obediently follow God and let him do his “immeasurably more” stuff again. I can’t really understand why I get to do this. It’s like having an already fast car – that also has a nitrous boost available. (I’ve got a friend with a car that has 500 hp AND nitrous. I need to think of a reason to drive it for a sermon illustration video.) That’s how this feels. I don’t think it’s going to be easy. I HATE the thought of getting on another airplane and flying across the world again. I’d rather spend 30 hours at the dentist than in a long metal tube. I would rather be preaching live at Parkview on Aug 15-16, than from video in Rwanda like I’m going to do. I’m not sure how the new Malawi administration is going to like what we’re going to do. And of course the Devil is going to take some shots.
Oh yeah, and my book is officially launched – Life On Mission – and we have a bunch of churches that are going to pilot it with us this fall which is more proof of the power of God.
But I have to see where this thing goes. If my hair catches fire – fun analogy, either because I’m going too fast or because God’s Spirit lands on me – so be it! There’s not that much up there anymore to burn anyway.
I’m telling you this, because I can guarantee you, if you will listen, there are some quiet whispers from God nudging you to go chase something down that He wants you to do. You can sit around and watch Zombies or some talent competition in your recliner – or you can follow it and see what happens.
Stop right now and ask God to tell you what you’re missing. And then go do something about it.
Don’t be surprised if you get to be a part of some stuff you really have no qualifications for – like the Apostles, or the early church, or Tim Harlow.
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:13