Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Reflections on Releasing Jesus' Presence and Power, part 2

Yesterday I found myself in a hospital room to pray with a man before his surgery to remove a significant tumor in his body. This a typical thing for a pastor to do; but I find myself wondering how often we actually move in the reality that Jesus died for that tumor and his power is present to bring healing to our bodies.

All around the world people are discovering the truth of Jesus’ healing power through experience. Hundreds of people receive sight when they are blind, crutches are thrown away, migraines are healed and even cancer and Aids is cured.

This often makes us in the US shake our head in disbelief because it is so foreign to our experience. But, I wonder if it is so much harder to believe that Jesus heals because all around us we have medicine and technology to bring healing, and they are often successful.

Jesus came proclaiming, “The Kingdom of God has come.” He demonstrated that the Kingdom had come through supernatural displays. Storms were immediately calmed, food stretched to feed thousands, but most often, the supernatural displays came through healings and people being set free of demonic oppression.

So, realistically, when Jesus tells us as his disciples that our main role is to proclaim the kingdom of God and then to go and heal, cure diseases and to cast out demons, how do we do this in an environment where we are able to make so much happen on our own?

How do we live in a place of great faith to be able to do the things that Jesus himself did when we are busy inventing the next great technology or operating ourselves to remove tumors or disease?

I believe it comes back to the starting point of the phrase “Releasing the Presence and Power of Jesus.” It starts with his presence. His presence comes as peace in the midst of conflict. It comes as gentle rain in the midst of drought. It comes as glory in the midst of worship. It comes with unity in the midst of division. Jesus’ presence changes the world.

It is in response to his presence that the power comes. Jesus’ power is different than worldly power. Jesus’ power speaks to a tumor and it shrinks. His power confronts evil and it shrivels or it runs away. His power comes and brings salvation to whole villages and transformation to entire cities. His power brings shalom to injustice.

Leading Missio Lux has been the most positive experience for my spiritual life. When all the bells and whistles of the church are removed, I am confronted with the stark reality of Jesus’ words and commandments. I have been forced to dig deeper for his direction and to seek to live his lifestyle on a moment to moment basis, rather than even a daily basis.

I am still learning.

We, as Missio Lux, are still learning.

I keep thinking about the Jesus that the disciples’ saw on the beach after his resurrection and why they didn’t recognize him until after the miracle of the haul of fish.

I wonder if it perhaps there is a revelation of who Jesus is when we are confronted with his Presence and Power. The disciples on the beach encountered both presence and power. They ate an unforgettable breakfast after their challenge of hauling in a 153 large fish.

Where are you challenged to know Jesus in a greater way?
Where do you long to experience his presence?
If you are filled with longing in that place, I encourage you to begin to thank Jesus that you will experience him that way, as he is the one who births those desires within us, and he will fulfill our godly desires. Proverbs 37:4 tells us: “Delight yourself in the Lord and he will fulfill the desires of our heart.”

Where are you inviting Jesus to bring his power in your life?
Is it in the midst of a work crisis, or a relationship dispute?
Is it in an area of your body where disease has settled in for the long term, or is it in an everyday headache?
Is it in seeking to walk a lifestyle like Jesus?

This is our reality. If we are going to follow Jesus in all the ways he taught and modeled, we can’t do it on our own. We must move in rhythm with his presence and seek to release his power in the midst of his presence as we, too, experience the Kingdom of God coming from heaven to earth.

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