The Power of a Whisper- Peter Olsen (10/20/2019)
In what we often refer to as the Lord’s prayer, Jesus told us how to pray regarding several important Kingdom issues. Amongst other things He taught us to pray “Your Kingdom come, Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven”.
In the Kingdom of God, Power and Wisdom work in collaboration with one another. Each one in its own season has its place of prominence and effectiveness. Power is often connected with loud voices and loud events (see story of Jericho). Wisdom is often more connected to softer tones and quieter voices (see story of Samuel and Eli). A whisper.
The Holy Spirit speaks loudly at times, and in a whisper at others. He calls to operate in power at times, and with wisdom in others. We must be positioned to respond to both with obedience.
Acts 9: 1-19
The story of Paul’s conversion is one of contrasts.
Verse 3: The “suddenly” of God. Some seasons in the Kingdom are short. In these seasons the hand of God moves very quickly, almost always to the surprise of the people who are involved in it. Ocean’s United was formed in a “sudden” season.
There is a contrast in the volume and tone in God’s voice in this story.
Saul and those who were with him were put on his knees by a visible extremely bright light.
The experience shook him up! He was blinded for 3 days. He did not eat or drink.
What do you think was going on in Paul’s heart and mind during those 3 days?
- His theology was turned on its head!
- He was thinking through his extensive training in Judaism and figuring out where the theology he so resolutely embraced was wrong.
- The Believers he had brutalized, including Stephan.
Paul was in the Wine Press of Heaven! The Wine Press has the capacity to press out all of the foolishness we are carrying with us! Paul certainly had some foolishness in him that needed to be pressed out.
Are you in the Wine Press? You are being prepared for the tasks that are before you, and you need the pressing process to produce that which is Holy and Pure. You may not like it but you will never regret it.
Jesus told Paul to expect someone by the name of Ananias to come pray for him.
The Lord spoke to Ananias to go pray with Saul and speak to him. Ananias pointed out to God that Paul was not a nice man and hesitated.
When God speaks to us it ALWAYS requires a response.
Recognize the importance of Ananias’ obedience! Paul went on to write more of the New Testament than anyone else. Ananias carried a powerful assignment with him as he walked to meet up with Paul. Ananias was carrying in him a spiritual nuclear bomb!
Think of what weighed in the balance as he acted in obedience to what the Lord spoke to him.
In my minds eye, I picture Ananias gently kneeling down as he put his hands on Paul and prayed. I see a gentle humble man of God praying a fervent but softly spoken prayer.
A whisper, an explosive, very powerful truth, and it was delivered in a whisper.
“God is not done with you”.
God still speaks to His people today, just as He did with Ananias. He is speaking to us here at Ocean’s United! He is speaking to you! What He is saying to you and your response matters.
The Wine Press is not designed to destroy you, far from it. But if we don’t understand what is going on, we are tempted to get upset with God about it all.
Much depends on the pressing process.
We need to go through the pressing process well, both personally and corporately. What God has set before Ocean’s United requires a refined people.