Friday, August 10, 2007

"A Fresh Touch" - July 1982

Here is another gem from the past that I have dug up. It emphasises the urgent need that we do not rest on our pneumatological laurels simply because we have received the baptism of the Holy Spirit. We must press on deeper into the glory and Presence of God.

“A Fresh Touch from God!” – July 1982

This is a constant need! We can go on in our old ways, relying upon the pattern of established habit rather than the spontaneity of resurrection life and power. Now there is nothing necessarily wrong with habit. There are good habits, even excellent habits. But sometimes a regular practice can degenerate into a formal repetition of a scheduled duty, rather than a joyful experience of a phase of our walk with Jesus.

Therein lies the clue. Much of the travelling along the dusty road of Galilee and Judea must have had the potential of being wearisome, tiring and quite literally dry! But the One the disciples travelled with made all the difference.

This truth about the need for a fresh touch from God appears in the Word in many ways. For example, the manna had to be gathered fresh daily except on the Sabbath or it “went off” (Exodus 16:20). The lamps in the tabernacle had to be “kept burning continually” (Leviticus 24:1, 2). The showbread had to be set out before the Lord regularly (Leviticus 24:8). The disciples filled with the Spirit on the Day of Pentecost (Acts 2) were filled again (Acts 4:31) and again (Acts 13:52 cf Acts 9:17 and 13:9 with Ephesians 5:18). To get a fresh touch from God we need a fresh meeting with God as Elijah discovered (1 Kings 18:46; 19:3, 5, 7 ff).

It may, indeed usually will involve revelation of our own need as Isaiah found (Isaiah 6). Paul expressed the necessity of “pressing on towards the mark” (Philippians 2:7-16).

One thing is clear; God is willing to touch us. Just as Jesus often asked sick people, “What is it that you would have me do for you?” so the Lord in effect asks us the same question daily. His mercies are new every morning (Lamentations 3:22, 23). Let us accept a new delivery!

Apart from a daily renewal, however there are special seasons of seeking God and receiving a fresh touch. It is important from time to time to set aside a longer period when we can seek His face and receive a fresh touch. Remember what has often been said about the experience of the Holy Spirit; “One baptism, many fillings, constant anointing”.

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