Sunday, November 14, 2004

am I charismatic?

am i really charismatic? in all many genuine healings have i seen in the last five years beyond the "my back was aching a bit but it seems a bit better now" variety? How many genuine prophetic words have i heard, beyond the "i feel the Lord is saying the word 'truth'" variety? i'm not blaming everyone else - how many people have I healed? (and before you start telling me that it's not me that does the healing it's God go and read the account of Jesus sending out the 72 - he told them to heal the sick (it should go without saying that it's by the power of God)). How many prophetic words have I given that have had any weight? well, ok, a few but not that many.
where is the expectation that the kingdom of God really can break in and change things dramatically? perhaps we spend a lot of time maintaining the illusion of expectation but really we aren't that expectant. sure it happens in Africa and China - pretty much anywhere really apart from the unbelieving UK.
if being charismatic means believing and seeing on a regualr basis the supernatural in operation then I'm probably not one. but i do speak in tongues so i guess that gets me in the club.
i know this probably sounds very cynical but i think it comes from a place of frustration with church and a desire to see our walk match our talk.
and another thing...Simon preached a really good sermon this morning on 1 Corinthians 12 and the gifts of the Spirit. but i wonder whether we need to understand that in the context of worship i.e. when the church gathers together for worship the Spirit manifests his/her presence by giving gifts to the different believers so that the body may be built up as it is gathered. In other words the gathered part of that concept is key. i.e. it's not about us personally and individualistically being given gifts of prophecy or whatever to take away with us - you cannot remove the gifts from the context of the body gathering for worship. that's where the gifts make sense. it's not about praying that an individual will receive the gift of prophecy as everyone is heading to the back for a cup of coffee. it's about the church gathering and the Spirit being invited to come and the expectation that when and as he does so he will manifest his presence in certain ways as we are worshipping together.
that's what i think Paul is getting at in 1 Corinthians 12.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I am thinking all the same things, with all the same frustrations and similar theological musings. My conclusion at the moment on most of the things running madly round my mind are that we need to spend more time becoming a disciple and less time worrying about church. Church is what happens when disciples gather, but too much of our focus goes on building church etc and not on seeking the King.


Rich -