Something More from a Film

Things are tough

and we wonder

can we overcome

hostilities, deprivation

stress on heart and home?

But we will try

by digging into wells of

compassion and comfort.

Don’t know what is available

for this purpose

but determined we are

to be decent, considerate

and relieving.

God help us…

and surely He will.

Amen and amen.

You Don’t Have Any Trouble…

Turned Pentecostal

Posted on 

They had come to celebrate. Late autumn rains outside the auditorium made no difference. Parking lot was full and seeming strangers exchanged welcomes as they shook off umbrellas and coats in the foyer.

Inside the musicians were at their testing exercises, as the pastor and party came up to the dais. The evangelist shone exceptionally as he reviewed the gathering, and imagined how the message would shake up sacred cows and demonstrate joy unspeakable. It was in him for the sake of the prayers and meditations offered up. He was going to be the astounded newsboy for Jesus. Brother Schambach. Man in touch in real terms with the people’s hurts and hopes. No great persona. No Doctor this or that.

And how the people watched eagerly as the love affair began. “Get up on your feet folks. This is Jesus we’re gonna meet tonight. Tell your neighbor to get ready for his miracle.”

Organist got the nod and a rousing beat and chorus began. Hands clapping around the large room. Some women up front starting to prance. High heels notwithstanding. And one young athletic man, coat thrown onto his chair, jumping, seemingly higher and higher, with the brightest of smiles.

Many of the other older ones could at least manage an upraised arm and a knowing gaze with eyes closed. The lyrics told the story:

He’s God of the heavens
He’s God of the earth
He’s God deep in my Bible
He’s God of the second birth…

…God is God

And always will be God.

Not the sounds of Luther or Cowper or Watts with that awesome historic grandeur. But fresh songs of the heart’s experience right now in the comfort and calling of the Holy Ghost. And He was always expressed as the HO-ly Ghost with uumph from the diaphragm. He was the one who always drew attention to Jesus, the Matchmaker, if you will.

Toward the back and the outer aisles one could see the doubters and the assayers. Quiet. Sitting on their hands. Mumbling between themselves. Largely doubting the rapt faces beginning to glow all around. Was this a culture or an expected performance or a “showiness” in the Spirit?

It was entertaining to see them begin to smile and clap their hands as well. Yes this was celebration, and Jesus was worthy of something much more than rote.

I wondered how they would react after the praise and before the sermon when perhaps a word or two in tongues would issue with the interpretation. I thought of Paul’s words, “though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity…”
 
Was this something entirely beyond personal preference? A holy order of sorts and orchestrated far beyond the imaginings of the happy people in this room. I had so concluded years back. One Methodist turned Anglican, turned Pentecostal…

(Note: Some of the best of testimony. My family rejoiced at several of his meetings. His stories of faith were always arresting and brought on happy, moist cheeks in hope. We would often drive out into the country at night to get better radio reception for his weekdays broadcast The Voice of Power.)

Moving from Self Awareness…

Listen to you

And the pressures

Are mounting

What should one do

With this Christ force now come.

What must be shifted

Of painful old habits

How now to clean up

That less-than-white sum?

All points to “me”

And the disciplines needed

Is this the way

That the sanctified win?

Or must I set it all

Way in the background

Giving my Lord room

To conquer within?

Yes in Philippians

I see the clue clearly (Phil 3: 12-15)

He apprehended me

To get the job done.

Yes and quite naturally

Now I behold it

Focus on Christ, saint

And display the Son.

Dynamics of Awesome Praise

And about that song…

we started out knowing

the context was good

and Isaiah 40 a favourite one.

buddy Dante had a voice

that was unique

low and raspy

but masculine for sure.

and then he hit that line

I’m gonna wait on you.

the room seemed to explode.

there was identification

a knowing yes

in everyone singing.

rocking and bobbing and smiling.

little blonde Tiffany

couldn’t stay still

as she sang

evident joy

true to her form in praise.

Brandon just beamed

at this apparent hit

(spiritual hit that is).

Chandler, ever the musician at the switch

checked the pulse and upped it another 

two notches.

the encircling faces glowed

not a one holding back.

Chris nodded his thrilled

and fascinated approval.

he the song leader

just took his small

happy part in this one.

feeling it grow.

wait on you, wait on you, wait on you

tasted your GOODNESS

trusted your PROMISE.

I’M GONNA WAIT ON YOU.

YOU’VE ALWAYS BEEN TRUE.

renewing strength

like that eagle.

in God’s good timing.

happy faces all around.

Communion.

Beautiful children.

Old Church Basement (feel the heart enlarging)

Hopeless now it seems

And that loved one struggles

With the realities of each new day

Often I pray

For that kind of deliverance

Elisha or some other hero

Might open up.

Lord take this cup

And make it sweet.

The one I love would

Nestle at your feet

If you were here.

Make Grace appear

If you will.

She needs you now.

I’m praying here and still.

Still waiting on you.

Father I’m trusting

And knowing that you

Are good and able

And willing to come through.