I recently asked Jesus this question: “What does freedom look like?”
He immediately brought to mind the picture of the Israelites walking through the Red Sea escaping slavery… BUT … NOT grumbling and complaining in the wilderness wanting to go back to slavery …which, sadly, is what the Israelites did …and as a result died in the wilderness, not entering the promised land. It was only the next generation who were allowed to enter the Promised Land.
Today, I reflect on this promise: “Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.”
– 2 Corinthians 3:17
And I read this from Nicky Gumbel…from his ‘Bible in One Year’ readings…
Love and unity go hand in hand. The Tower of Babel is the symbol of disunity (Genesis 11:1–9). The people said, ‘Come, let us build ourselves a city, with a tower that reaches to the heavens, so that we may make a name for ourselves’ (v.4). This act of pride and power-seeking led to disunity, symbolised in the confusion of different languages in the world. ‘The Lord confused the language of the whole world. From there the Lord scattered them over the face of the whole earth’ (v.9).
The day of Pentecost was the reversal of Babel. The Holy Spirit enables people to say: ‘each of us hears them [speaking] in our native language’ (Acts 2:8). The gift of tongues symbolises the fact that the Holy Spirit reverses the disunity of Babel and unites all peoples and languages.
This is a common experience today as we see the Holy Spirit bringing love and unity across churches, languages and nations.
Lord, may we never seek to make a name for ourselves or our own church, denomination or movement. Rather, may we seek to glorify your name. Pour out your Spirit, O Lord, on the church as on the day of Pentecost. May there be a reversal of Babel. May there be an end to disunity. May your Spirit and the values of the kingdom of God bring love, joy, peace, true happiness and unity.
As I continue to reflect on …what God is calling us to BE as the church …building God’s kingdom, rather than our own little kingdoms, this rings so beautifully.
Questions to Reflect on:
Where have we been trying to make a name for ourselves? (Rather than lifting up the name of Jesus?)
Where have we settled, perhaps becoming complacent, becoming stuck in ruts?
Where have we been looking backwards to the past?
Have we perhaps been controlling or manipulating a ‘move of God’ without asking for more of Holy Spirit?
Are we open to God moving outside the box in the future, no matter what He brings?
Ask the Lord, “What do you have next?”
Invite Holy Spirit to fall on your family, your friendships, your gatherings and be ready for anything that looks different than what you’re used to.
Be prepared to fast and pray for days… God longs to invite us into friendship with Him rather than just giving us marching orders.
Did you know that in world history, all the Revivals look differently? They each look like Jesus but not like each other. People may reject Jesus’ move of Holy Spirit when He doesn’t fit their box. Let us not be people who reject God’s Spirit because He doesn’t fit our traditions.
“Holy Spirit lead us to be ready for each new day of what you are doing. Thank you for your move in the past, but let us not settle and build our own little kingdoms around your movements. Let us instead, build your Kingdom by following your every move! Yes & Amen! 💗🙌
Quote Source: https://www.bibleinoneyear.org/bioy/commentary/3171