DOES IT REALLY TAKE ALL THAT? 🤔
Often times, I face “friendly” ridicule for getting out of church so late on Sundays.
I hear things like, “…Yeah, they get out super late. Start at 10a and get out at 10p…”. I hear lots of laughs, slick humor and see plenty of head shakes from time to time. I do everything in my power to brush it off, but often feel incredibly outnumbered and overwhelmingly misunderstood. I can understand their perspective only because I remember being in church as a kid and seeing that WHY we were in church for what felt like 10 hours was because there wasn’t enough money raised in the offering the first time. However, these days, that isn’t the case…
I usually respond by saying something like, “Yeah, we’re often in church for a while, but it’s SO worth it. I mean, today alone people got healed from suicidal thoughts and sicknesses and SO many people got saved, it was crazy!!!” 🙌🏾
But one day, I was challenged with this comment… “…but does it really take all that?”
Needless to say, I always just smile and keep it moving. 🙂
To answer the question at hand… “YES. It DOES really take all that.”
Then, I’ll even add to it… “YES, it takes ALL THAT because He’s WORTH all that!”
And on top of that… “Is there some place more important I should be?” 🤔
Well, let’s look at this biblically.
The first scripture I think of is 2 Corinthians 3:17 (KJV) “Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.”
Another translation explains liberty as “FREEDOM” which means to not be restrained... to no longer be a slave… to have full control and no longer be held in captivity.
But then that poses a follow-up question… Are you bound? Are you aware that you’re bound? Do you WANT to be free? 🤔
Yeah, so i’m not gonna tackle that beast… but just marinate on those questions and answer internally. Then ask yourself… is it worth it to you to be in the Presence of God? Is not that why you go to church in the first place? Or is it to be blessed with houses and cars?
The woman with the issue of blood (Mark 5:25-29 NLT) was BOUND by an internal sickness… All she wanted to do was get to Jesus and when she got to Him, she was healed and freed immediately.
There was another woman whom the Bible says was immoral. (Luke 7:36-47 NLT) She was a sinner, but she heard Jesus was coming to town and decided that if she could JUST get in His Presence everything would change. She worshipped Him and honored Him with everything she had, including a RARE perfume. And BECAUSE of what she did (risking her life and looking CRAZY in front of others)… she was forgiven.
The Bible says that those who are forgiven little show only little love. However, those who are forgiven much, show much love. (Luke 7:47 NLT) Think about it… how much have you been forgiven from?
Well… Ephesians 2:1-5 NLT says, “Once, you were dead because of your disobedience and many sins. You used to live in sin, just like the rest of the world, obeying the devil - the commander of the powers of the unseen world. He is the spirit at work in the hearts of those who refuse to obey God. ALL OF US used to live that way, following the passionate desires and inclinations of our sinful nature. By our very nature we were subject to God’s anger, just like everyone else. BUT GOD, is so rich in mercy, and He loved us so much, that even though we were dead because of our sins, He gave us life when He raised Christ from the dead. (It is only by God’s grace that you have been saved!)"
The Bible also says, “For EVERYONE has sinned; we ALL fall short of God’s glorious standard.” - Romans 3:23 NLT
So again, take a sec to answer that question for yourself… How much have you been forgiven from?…How grateful are you to God? How much worship is it worth to you? An hour? Two hours? Three tops? 🤔
…There’s no wrong or right amount of time for being in the Presence of God, guys. There’s just fresh revelation and your response is the posture of your heart.
So then… after you’ve become free in the Presence of God and worshipped Him for all He’s done… After the weights of your heart are lifted and joy begins to spring up a well inside of you… don’t you want others to experience it, too?
Don’t you want to see cancer patients healed... People suffering from depression and suicidal thoughts freed... See the dead come to life again? With ALL that’s going on in this world, don’t you want hatred to end? Peace to win and love to reign over prejudice in the world? Do you understand what revival is?! Do you know that when the Holy Spirit comes and is poured out that sons and daughters will prophesy, young men will see visions, old men will dream dreams, even the servants will prophesy, and God will cause wonders in the heavens above and signs on the earth below?! (Acts 2:17-19 NLT) Do you truly want to see that?! Or have you just been going to church because you were told to or because you want a quick fix for YOUR life and care less about the lives of others?
I mean, really REALLY ponder the thought and allow the Holy Spirit to reveal to you His heart. Ask Him to give you a greater sense of your need and compassion for the needs of others.
I stumbled upon this scripture one day and it has been my driving motive ever since.
Hosea 3:5 NLT says “But afterward the people will return and devote themselves to the Lord their God (and to David’s descendant, their King). In the last days they will tremble in awe of the LORD and of His goodness.”
Now, in context, the scripture speaks of the church, whom is the bride of Christ and how we’ve turned away from Him. It speaks of the reconciliation that will happen and that’s when verse 5 comes in saying that we will return and devote ourselves back to Him. Once again, we will be one with Jesus and Our Creator.
As a result, lives will instantly change and THAT alone is worth the HOURS spent in the Presence of God crying out for Him to pour out His Spirit even the more.
I SO STRONGLY AGREE with Simon Peter’s response to Jesus as He was explaining that the only way to eternal life was though Him. Simon Peter said, “Lord, to whom would we go? YOU have the words that give eternal life. We believe, and we know You are the Holy One of God.” John 6:35-69 NLT
Honestly, I could go on and on because I’m so passionate about the Presence of God. I love it, I feel weightless in it and I COULD literally stay and marinate all day. I’m equally as passionate about being obedient to Him so that His Kingdom would come and His will be done on the earth. All I know is that Jesus said to stay and wait for the Holy Spirit to come…(Acts 1:4-5 NLT) So THAT is just what I plan to do.
As long as it takes… I don’t mind being the one that’s Here Waiting. At least, I’ll be in the room when He comes.
I mean… Anna waited basically her entire life in the temple for Jesus to come. (Luke 2:36-38 NLT) People have no problem waiting overnight in long lines and crazy temperatures on a Black Friday evening to get their very own discount-priced flatscreen TV’s. Yet, ridicule those who just desire to sit in the Presence of God and cry out to and for Him. Little do they realize that if He comes for one, He comes for all. Everyone benefits, even those who didn’t want Him before that moment.
So, with all of that said… I just pray right now that Believers around the world would begin to self-examine and reprioritize. Ask God for a greater longing for His Presence, compassion, patience and endurance while waiting. He promised to come, so "don’t get weary in well-doing, for in due season, we will all reap if we faint not." (Galatians 6:9 NLT)
Deeper Fellowship Church - Orlando, FL
Pastor William McDowell has done an INCREDIBLE job teaching us to wait for the promised Holy Spirit. I chose this picture (above) because I'd like you to know that indeed "it DOES take all that". And as a result of our patience and persistence in crying out for revival, regardless of what the enemy wants you to think...
God has been pouring out His Spirit across the world. "The blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cured, the deaf hear, the dead are raised to life, and the Good News is being preached to the poor." (Luke 7:22 NLT)
Revival is Happening!
So, again... keep going, y'all. We are already victorious. It's happening!