Spirit-filled or Spirit-blind?

Man, that church has a great dance team. The way those people wave those big flags is pretty impressive. But, you know what? I’m just not all that jazzed by stuff like this. If you gave me free tickets to go see some cool dance troupe, I’d probably pass.

That guy is really praying. I mean, he’s laying on his nose right there in the aisle. Wow. But, I’m probably not going to join him. That probably makes some people mad because they think I am totally closed to the Holy Spirit.

Have you ever been in a situation where a leader tells you to get into small groups to share your hearts and pray together? I’ve been in small groups where I’ve known the people and was totally cool with it. I’ve been in other situations where I felt totally awkward because I didn’t know the people I was supposed to be praying with.

Raise your hands, jump up and down, kneel, share your heart, wave a banner, call out loud praises. Casual, formal, blended … Church personalities are almost as abundant as individual personality differences. I think that’s pretty cool.

You know what bums me out? It bums me out when people push their personality on me. I like to laugh and joke. It bums me out when serious people try to make me more like them. I bet it bums them out when I try to get them to loosen up,

I served in one church where they started going after the experiential, Holy Spirit tingles. They even provided lessons in how to speak in tongues. (just repeat “mamma dadda” over and over as fast as you can) They called the ability to babble being “Spirit filled.” It seemed more like being babble-filled to me.

It’s weird how some say they are “Spirit filled” because they clap during worship choruses and others say it describes their snake handling services. That’s a pretty wide spectrum.

I’m scared of the label. I admit it. My experience is that “Spirit-filled” is usually tied to some emotional response. It’s now almost entirely tied to what we feel. Jazzed? That’s definitely because the Holy Spirit showed up. Down or disconnected? Like Elvis, the Holy Spirit must have left the building.

I wish the Holy Spirit wasn’t so fickle. I wish He didn’t have an exclusive appearance deals with Matt Chandler, Francis Chan, Rob Bell and Andy Stanley. He could have so much more influence if He would speak through all the people in those small churches preaching His Word. He should have empowered the preaching of His Word so it would never be useless to preach it.

Oh wait, He did! He doesn’t come and go based on our moods. He doesn’t sing through David Crowder and desert the volunteer song leader who would not make it far on Idol. He’s not fickle at all. He’s faithful. In our weakness, He is strong.

We’re the fickle ones. He’s with us. If we can’t see Him it’s not because the church is not Spirit-filled.It’s because we are Spirit-blind.

John 4:23 But the time is coming–it has, in fact, come–when what you’re called will not matter and where you go to worship will not matter. “It’s who you are and the way you live that count before God. Your worship must engage your spirit in the pursuit of truth. That’s the kind of people the Father is out looking for: those who are simply and honestly themselves before him in their worship.

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About Scott Linscott

Living life to the fullest, walking in the dust of my Rabbi, creating art through photography and written word, speaking words of hope and encouragement at conferences, workshops, church and civic gatherings.
This entry was posted in burnout, Christianity, church planting, direction, Find God, gospel, Jesus, leadership and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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