"Then Ananias went to the house and entered it. Placing his hands on Saul, he said, ‘Brother Saul, the Lord-Jesus, who appeared to you on the road as you were coming here-has sent me so that you may see again and be filled with the Holy Spirit’" (Acts 9:1).
Billy Graham, the great evangelist, shared a personal story about the role of the Holy Spirit in his life-long ministry and how he came to see the importance of being filled with the Holy Spirit.
In my own life there have been times when I have also had the sense of being filled with the Spirit, knowing that some special strength was added for some task I was being called to perform. We sailed for England in 1954 for a crusade that was to last for three months. While on the ship, I experienced a definite sense of oppression. Satan seemed to have assembled a formidable array of his artillery against me. Not only was I oppressed, I was overtaken by a sense of depression, accomplished by a frightening feeling of inadequacy for the task that lay ahead. Almost night and day I prayed. I knew in a new way what Paul was telling us when he spoke about ‘praying without ceasing.’ Then one day in a prayer meeting with my wife and colleagues, a break came. As I wept before the Lord, I was filled with deep assurance that power belonged to God and He was faithful. I had been baptized by the Spirit into the Body of Christ when I was saved, but I believe God gave me a special anointing on the way to England. From that moment on I was confident that God the Holy Sprit was in control for the tasks that lay ahead. That proved true.*
As a believer, God has provided the Holy Spirit for you and I so that we can experience the power of the gospel that allows us to live the Christian life.
Today, if you have not done so, invite the Holy Spirit to fill your life to overflowing so that you can be a witness in your workplace, city and nation.
*Elmer Towns, Understanding the Deeper Life, Revell, Old Tappan, NJ 1988, pp. 214, 215
We continue meditating on the importance of learning to think spiritually. It is sometimes interesting to listen to Christians discussing together both earthly and heavenly issues. Take politics, for example. When involved in a discussion on this subject, many Christians seem to put their Christianity on one side and bring out all the prejudices and worldly arguments which they have been accustomed to use over the years. What does this say to us? It reveals the great need we have to break with the idea that life can be viewed on two levels – the natural and the spiritual. The Christian must learn to view everything from a spiritual viewpoint or otherwise he will fall prey to the same problems that the psalmist had. The great preacher C.H. Spurgeon once told a group of theological students that after they entered the ministry they should not be surprised to find that people who prayed like angels in a church prayer meeting could act like devils in a church business meeting. Unfortunately the history of the Church proves his statement to be true. How can this happen? It’s because in a prayer meeting people think spiritually, but in a business meeting they revert to their natural thinking, with all its prejudices and worldly assumptions. They have a party spirit within them and as soon as any one bumps against them – out it comes. Our Lord, as our text for today shows so clearly, saw everything from a spiritual point of view. This is why, in the hour of overwhelming testing, He was able to say: "Not my will, but yours be done" (Luke 22:42).
My Father and my God, forgive me that so often my thinking is based on natural, rather than spiritual, perspectives. I think spiritually about some matters, but not all. Help me, dear Lord. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
Following a morning in which CBS and NBC gleefully promoted Hillary Clinton’s latest public appearance, Wednesday’s CBS Evening News built on that with another shameless promotion of Clinton and her “new strategy for winning” ahead of a likely presidential bid in 2016. Anchor Scott Pelley began the pro-Clinton segment by remarking how “[i]f Hillary Clinton has a shot at becoming the first woman president, she’ll need women voters and we’re beginning to see how she hopes to do it” with her speech before a group of women involved in the technology field in Silicon Valley.
On Wednesday, both CBS This Morning and NBC’s Today did their best to promote a recent speech by Hillary Clinton in Silicon Valley in which the former First Lady stressed the importance of gender pay equity in the workforce. The two networks conveniently ignored the fact that under the media’s and her own definition of pay inequality, she paid her female Senate staffers 72 cents for each dollar her male staffers earned.
On Wednesday night, liberal networks MSNBC and Telemundo teamed up to present a town hall on illegal immigration that featured President Barack Obama before a friendly auditorium of supporters and taking questions that ranged from softballs to ones from the far left that implored him to further expand his amnesty. The event was moderated by Jose Diaz-Balart, who serves as the anchor of both MSNBC’s The Rundown and Telemundo’s Noticiero Telemundo. From the start, it was clear that he was also on stage to play the role of advocate.
As of Wednesday morning, NBC’s morning and evening newscasts have yet to cover ISIS’s kidnapping of up to 150 Christians from northeastern Syria on Monday. On Wednesday, Today yawned at this latest example of the Islamic extremist group’s persecution of Christians. Instead, they devoted 1 minute and 13 seconds to a Slate writer’s advice to parents on giving their children allowances.
Tuesday’s New York Times featured a front-page "congressional memo" by Carl Hulse and Ashley Parker devoted to the paper’s new favorite topic: How the GOP-led Congress is staining the party’s reputation for 2016: "Funding Fight Poses Dangers For the G.O.P. — Battle on Immigration Puts Security at Issue."
Wrapping up an interview with actor Tom Hanks on Wednesday’s NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer took time to promote a January op-ed Hanks wrote for The New York Times praising "free" community college: "I read this op-ed you wrote recently….I love that. Why was it so important for you to get that message out there?"
if you care about the openness of the Internet—and you should—listen up.