Holy Spirit has impressed me that disorder, distress, disruption and deep darkness is covering the world; but this offers an opportunity for spiritual resurgence of Holy Spirit’s power for believers..
As we speed towards the edge of civil and economic collapse with inner-city rot and riot increasing; immorality flourishing to the degree that would make Sodom blush; a news media where evil is spoken of as good, and good as evil; where most Christians are afraid, even ashamed to admit they believe in Jesus Christ for fear of ridicule; where political correctness demands acceptance of counterfeit religions – even the worship of demons; where prayer is forbidden in schools but condoms are liberally passed out and alternative lifestyles not only taught but applauded; where the Ten Commandments and nativity scenes are stricken from public property, but drug addiction and dealing are winked at since it’s become so commonplace; where millions of pre-born and partially-born babies have been systematically murdered for convenience with this atrocity hailed as a woman’s “choice” – the current darkness will become even blacker in the coming year. Never will there ever be a greater opportunity for believers to shine and display the glory of God than in the midst of such gross darkness!
The prophet Isaiah perfectly described this opportunity to shine:
“Arise, shine; for your light has come! And the glory of the Lord is risen upon you. For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and deep darkness the people; but the Lord will arise over you, and His glory will be seen upon you. The Gentiles shall come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your rising. Lift up your eyes all around, and see: they all gather together, they come to you; your sons shall come from afar, and your daughters shall be nursed at your side, then you shall see and become radiant, and your heart shall swell with joy; because the abundance of the sea shall be turned to you, the wealth of the Gentiles shall come to you” (Isa.60:1-5).
We may well have reached a high water mark for ungodliness, but as wide as the gates of hell are opened, so also the power of Holy Spirit and the glory of God are available to believers to turn back the tide of darkness and shine ever brighter.
Naysayers, particularly in the church world, will be plentiful. They will continue whine and complain about the crumbling society and yearn for the good old days – just like Israel complained to Moses about being delivered from Egypt where they had their onions, garlic, and fleshpots, but forgot about the whips and death of their firstborn sons. Complaint is full of self-pity, weakness and powerlessness. Those having a form of godliness, shallow Christianity, always complain when faith is required of them. They will be even more upset when their creature comforts are diminished or completely eliminated! Doubt, unbelief, victim mentality, poverty spirit, along with envy of God’s blessings and favor on those living by faith will exude from those who refuse to leave their familiar comfort zones of religious mediocrity. They will be the worst detractors and opposition to any resurgence of the power of Holy Spirit. The greatest opposition to a new move of God does not come from the world – they are interested in seeing something REAL! Opposition has historically come from within the church and has impeded many from entering into a new dimension of truth and experience in Holy Spirit. For those who are habitual complainers, may I suggest you read about a complaining prophet who lamented to God – why do the wicked prosper when the righteous suffer? This was God’s response: “If you have run with the footmen and they have wearied you, then how will you contend with the horses? And if in the land of peace, in which you trusted, they wearied you, then how will you do in the floodplain of the Jordan” (Jer.12:5)? The Lord said, Jeremiah – cheer up, things are going to get worse! In like manner Holy Spirit is issuing a clarion call to the complainers in the church today – “STOP WHINING AND START SHINING!”
The world is only doing what it knows to do – SIN! And they’re becoming more and more accomplished at it. For the most part, the church has tried to ignore the elephant in the room because they had no ability to move it out, because of ignorance of the covenant, power of Holy Spirit and kingdom principles governing the earth – not having any understanding that “greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world” (1 Jn.4:4). For this reason, many who have professed faith in Jesus Christ have found themselves bound and even facing destruction by the enemy (Hos.4:6; Isa.5:13). For believers – ignorance is anything but bliss, it’s an open door for the hell’s forces to invade their lives! What’s the remedy?
Isaiah wrote, “Arise, shine! This is the short, sweet answer for our condition. To “arise”, one must engage in MOVEMENT. Too many believers have become spiritually stagnant – no movement, static, sitting down, kicked back, comfortable, content with their present understanding of God. The Lord warned of stagnation: “For My people have committed two evils: they have forsaken Me, the fountain of living waters, and hewn themselves cisterns – broken cisterns that can hold no water” (Jer.2:13). Not only are cisterns containers of lifeless water with no source, but Holy Spirit describes these people as “broken cisterns”. Here’s the problem, just because you’ve stopped in your understanding and pursuit of God, doesn’t mean that God has stopped His plans and MOVEMENT, waiting for you to catch up with Him at your leisure. He’s moved on! God’s character is changeless – He is love; but His ways are always changing – Holy Spirit is always engaged in MOVEMENT. Jesus explained, “The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit” (Jn.3:8). Holy Spirit is pneuma, Wind – always moving in and through believers in partnership with Him. MOVEMENT is the first sign of LIFE – not just that your heart is beating – “bios”; but “zoe” - God’s kind of life lived in the power of Holy Spirit. In order to participate in the coming resurgence of the charismas – gifts and power of Holy Spirit, you’re going to have to get up and out of your comfort zone. Just as God told Abram: “Get out of your country, from your family and from your father’s house, to a land that I will show you” (Gen.12:1); so also Holy Spirit is saying, “Arise, shine, get out of that religious trap which the enemy has lulled you into!” Just as Abram believed God and it was accounted to him as righteousness (Gen.15:6); so also our response must be instant willingness and obedience to His leading.
Years ago, as a builder, my crew nicknamed me – “The Hammer”. I’m not sure why. It may have been they thought I had a “hammer mentality” with a worldview that everything was a nail to be driven. Anyway, here’s the point Holy Spirit impressed upon me. We live in a TARGET RICH ENVIRONMENT for believers. Spirit-filled believers will be surrounded by darkness offering an incredible opportunity to SHINE in the midst of “deep darkness” over people’s lives. Believers must gain a “GLORY MENTALITY” to shine with the reflection of the glory of God – with a worldview that everything is filled with darkness requiring the light of God’s truth shined upon it!
For Spirit-active believers, we are in the midst of opportunity and excitement the likes of which many have never seen before. As the world spirals deeper into depravity, despair, and gross darkness, believers will have incredible opportunities to offer God’s plan of salvation and Holy Spirit’s healing, miracle working, restorative power for deliverance, healing and provision in the midst of the world’s chaos. Just as Mordecai’s words to Esther: “Yet who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this” (Est.4:14)? This may be your kairos time, God’s appointed time, to arise, shine, and demonstrate the power of the Greater One Within. Amen.