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Near and Far

When God begins to move people will be drawn from all over, especially if they know their needs can be met, or there is something big happening. Jesus was not only doing some miraculous things like healing or teaching, this had all turned into a "movement." The very reason that Jesus was noticed was because the Spirit of God was evident and at work. A movement of God is an awesome thing to experience and those who come have expectations, but God controls and does what He wants when the Spirit moves. The Spirit of God is uncontrollable by us and when He moves He has a very perfect goal in it all and we must bend our will to His and let His Spirit control the movement. Luke 6 we see that word of Jesus and all that was happening was spreading as far away as Tyre and Sidon, which means people were traveling over 50 miles to come and see Jesus heal and hear Him teach. The verses are as follows: Luke 6:17 When they came down from the mountain, the disciples stood with Jesus on a large, level area, surrounded by many of his followers and by the crowds. There were people from all over Judea and from Jerusalem and from as far north as the seacoasts of Tyre and Sidon. 18 They had come to hear him and to be healed of their diseases, and those troubled by evil[b] spirits were healed. 19 Everyone tried to touch him, because healing power went out from him, and he healed everyone.

I have been praying for the Spirit of God to move in a visible awakening in His church and thus, in our world and I believe the Spirit is poised and ready to do a great movement again in our local communities and also in our nation. Please pray with me to see this great movement bring change to churches and communities and for His Spirit to guide us when that movement comes. I believe part of the enemy's plan is to get us to do the mundane plans of religion over and over and it numbs us to the fact that God is still active and ready to move. I do believe Jesus' coming is soon, but we must be faithful and pray in the middle.

There were a few other keys to God moving as Jesus began teaching and healing. Jesus saw the needs of the people, so there was a burden present in everything He did. Also, since Jesus is the Word, the Word was active and impacted everyone who met Jesus and heard Him preach and teach. Jesus and His impact were lifted up as He was drawing all of them to Him. His followers were praying for Him and the word of Jesus was being shared by committed followers who really believed in this movement of God. The model for how God was going to make all of this happen was echoed in the Great Commission. The major difference was that Jesus now told them not to wait around for others to come to them, but to go to the lost who needed to hear the message of hope and share the message and Jesus said He would be with us.

God is still moving, but we must Go in His Spirit and take the message instead of sitting and hoping that the lost will all of a sudden just want to come to Jesus. The message has to Go or the message will not be heard. In a modern-day church world where some think that all of this will just happen without God using His people, we must come back to the steps of Jesus and follow His example. This is the cross we must take up and follow Him as He called those early disciples to do in Luke 9:23 Then he said to the crowd, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must give up your own way, take up your cross daily, and follow me.

Our world may look dark and the opposite of what we think it should look like, but remember Jesus in His followers' lives is the light that the world needs to see. Pray with me for this awakening and then trust God and He will move as never before and it will be Near and Far as the lost come to find hope in the message of the Gospel. Bob Woods tells the story of a couple who took their son, 11, and daughter, 7, to Carlsbad Caverns. As always, when the tour reached the deepest point in the cavern, the guide turned off all the lights to dramatize how completely dark and silent it was below the earth's surface. The little girl, suddenly enveloped in utter darkness, was frightened and began to cry. Immediately heard the voice of her brother: "Don't cry. Somebody here knows how to turn on the lights." In a real sense, that is the message of the gospel: light is available, even when darkness seems overwhelming.

The light is still shining and we can trust God to shine that light as we share His gospel and experience a spiritual awakening that is Spirit-led. Then people will come Near and Far to experience the Spirit of God and we will see revival and awakening!

The Pilgrimage Continues

David Warren

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