There is this song that we sing called “Holy Spirit”. I believe that it is one of Rachael’s favorites and I feel leery about writing a blog piece about music seeing the only C note I recognize is $100 dollar bill. Being a professional talker, I do know words. The line from the song “Come flood this place and fill the atmosphere” makes me stop and wonder what it would really look like for the Holy Spirit to fill the atmosphere with His Presence.
Ephesus was a hard town for a church to make an impact. There were so many witches in the town that when they turned to God, they burned several million dollars of incantation books. There was a church in this town that was lead by Pastor Apollos. He was enthusiastic, taught the Bible accurately, and built a church of 12 young men. Not much of an atmosphere change.
We can look at this and say, “Well they just needed revival” but I believe atmosphere change comes through vessels that are yielded to the Holy Spirit. John 14: 16 says “I will ask the Father and he will give you another Helper who will stay with you forever” (GNT) Notice the Holy Spirit is not a doer, but a helper. He wants to empower us to change the atmosphere of the area we live.
Paul enters Ephesus, and the twelve member church is filled with the Holy Spirit and:
- People’s lives are changed
- Diseases are healed
- Witches covens are emptied
- Bon fires are started.
Impact and atmosphere change from the power of Spirit Filled people.
I heard the story of a pastor who wanted to expand his church. The City Council asked for opinions from the neighbors. One by one they encouraged the council to approve the expansion, but their reasoning was interesting. “The church isn’t really bothering anyone”, “They are quiet so why not”, “They are nice people so why not let them build their church.” The pastor’s dream was approved, but he went home and wept. How can people filled with the Spirit of the Creator of all have so little impact on the places we live?
Look at Luke 4: 14 : “Jesus returned to Galilee, filled with the Holy Spirit’s power”. The next thing we see happening is a furious crowd jumping up, mobbing Jesus and wanting to stone Him. (See Verse 28, 29) Talk about changing the atmosphere and having impact. The Holy Spirit does not make us nice people that the neighborhood enjoys, He either breaks the power of witches covens or causes a riot. Either way, we are in need of something different in our day.
Pastor Alison sent out cards inviting people to a children’s event. One card came back with a scathing opinion of what she was doing. I love that. Don’t let them just throw the card in the garbage saying “Isn’t that nice”. Change a person so much they have to respond to what is happening in front of them.
Join me in praying “Holy Spirit you are welcome here” and not only welcome, but desperately needed. Change the atmosphere. Start riots, or break up covens. Either way, start this work in me.