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Looking for the Holy Pause

 

AttentionA while ago I posted a series of articles about hearing a Word from God. I said that this was the missing ingredient in the church today. I believe that it’s the restoration of this truth that will be the basis of the next move of God.

With that in mind, I’m drawn to the book of Acts where this principle is at the forefront of the activities of the early church. It’s important to see how they operated in it if we’re to go in that direction.

As I read this account of the church’s infancy, I’ve learned to look for what I call “the holy pause.” These are the times where the believer is taking the time to hear from God concerning their next move. Most of the time, we read right over these important moments without giving them a second thought.

One place this is evident is when Peter and John were going to the Temple at the time of prayer. At the gate was a man who had been crippled from birth.

When he saw Peter and John about to enter, he asked them for money. Peter looked straight at him, as did John. Then Peter said, “Look at us!” So the man gave them his attention, expecting to get something from them.
Acts 3:3-5

Did you see it? Peter and John paused to stare at the man. Why? They had been to the temple every day for a long time. They had seen this crippled man on many occasions. Why did they stop to stare at him on this particular day?

It was because at that moment the Holy Spirit was arresting the Apostle’s attention. They were pausing to hear what the Spirit was speaking to them. Then, having heard from God that it was this man’s time to be healed, they spoke the words that changed his life forever.

A similar event took place in the life of Paul.

In Lystra there sat a man crippled in his feet, who was lame from birth and had never walked. He listened to Paul as he was speaking. Paul looked directly at him, saw that he had faith to be healed and called out, “Stand up on your feet!” At that, the man jumped up and began to walk.
Acts 14:8-10

When the verse says that Paul saw that he had faith, it literally means that Paul perceived the man’s faith. After all, faith is not something that can be seen with your eyes – it’s an internal decision.

How long did Paul look at the man? We’re not told. But it was long enough for the Holy Spirit to speak the Word of healing to the Apostle.

We need to learn this truth if we’re to see the manifestation of the Spirit in our ministries. We need to learn to be sensitive to the Holy Spirit working in us. This takes time in His presence.

In our generation we want the quick working of God. Unfortunately, the greater the manifestation of God in your life, the more time you must spend in prayer before the Lord. We need to learn the lesson of the Holy Pause.

Question: What are some other examples of this holy pause in Scripture?

© Nick Zaccardi 2014

 
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Posted by on May 28, 2014 in Prayer, What's Missing?, Word of God

 

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Do You Interrupt the Lord?

SpeakerWe all know that it’s impolite to interrupt someone when they’re speaking.  Have you ever thought about this in relation to Christ and His work in you?  He speaks to us in various ways.  Are we guilty of interrupting what He’s doing in us?

I want to look at an incident in the life of Jesus that illustrates this.  It’s found in the Gospel of Luke, chapter 12.  At this point in the Lord’s ministry, He’s publicly teaching somewhere when all of a sudden a loud voice interrupts Him.

Someone in the crowd said to him, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the inheritance with me.”
Luke 12:13

Can you imagine that?  Jesus is walking down the street giving words of instruction and perhaps ministering to the sick when somebody yells out, “Tell my brother to give me my share of the inheritance.”

It makes you wonder what type of individual would be so self-absorbed, that they would make a public statement like that.  Well, that kind of presumption was enough to set Jesus off in a new direction of teaching.

Jesus replied, “Man, who appointed me a judge or an arbiter between you?”  Then he said to them, “Watch out!  Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; a man’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.”
Luke 12:14-15

When Jesus got done, that person probably felt as though he should have kept his mouth shut.  Jesus used this interruption to teach the crowd about the foolishness of greed.

He told them a parable about a rich man with no common sense. This man got a big harvest, built bigger barns, and stored it all up.  Jesus explained that the man ended up dying before he could spend all of his wealth.  That foolish man lost the eternal to gain the temporary.

The Lord’s message to those gathered around Him was that our life does not consist of what can be accumulated.  You’re not to worry about what you’re going to wear or what you’re going to eat.  God will provide for you.

Worry about serving God.  Worry about doing the Father’s will.  In that way you’re laying up treasure in Heaven.  Christ said that where your treasure is, that’s where your heart is going to be.

This got me thinking.  The Lord is attempting to do a particular work in my life.  He communicates His plan to me through a series of events.  He speaks to my heart, allows circumstances to come my way, and teaches me through the lives and words of others.

How often do I “interrupt” His plan with a totally unrelated request?  I get my eyes off His plan and onto my desires.  When it comes to the Lord, I need to think before I ask.

We must be sensitive to the Holy Spirit at work in us.  Make sure that your requests are in line with His plan.  Don’t be discourteous and interrupt the Lord.

Question: Have you ever found yourself guilty of interrupting God’s work in you?

© Nick Zaccardi 2013

 
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Posted by on April 26, 2013 in Encouragement

 

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