The birth, crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus was well foretold by the prophets of the Old Testament. None better on Jesus’ birth than in Isaiah 9:6. The prophets of old were inspired by the Holy Spirit to reveal God’s plan for man. They listened to God and they were not afraid to stand the test of a prophet and so they spoke. They were not deterred by the difficulties or politics of their time. The prophets were proven and so we celebrate Christmas.
Both Joel and Jesus told of a coming day when the Holy Spirit would be poured out upon all flesh when sons and daughters, servants and handmaidens would prophecy, young men would see visions and old men dream dreams. They spoke of a coming time of turmoil, with signs and wonders in heaven and of the great and notable day of the lord, but not of a day without salvation for all who call upon the name of the Lord.
Today, we live in those troubled times, but not in a day without hope. This is the day of the new dispensation of the Holy Spirit which has come to counsel, comfort and inspire us with visions for our time and empower us to fulfill our part in those visions.
The work of Barry and Barry Wood Ministries is a result of a Holy Spirit vision which has led men and women to follow the Great Commission given to us by Jesus. Barry’s vision has become a reality.
Today, the workers and supporters who affirmed and joined this vision for East Africa celebrate the planting of over 1000 congregations, filled with people who have called upon the name of the Lord for their salvation.
When sorting through all the news of today, our prejudices and self interests abound to preserve our status quo and it is easy for us to withdraw from the task of discipleship. Troubled time surely surround us, but we are not left without counsel, comfort and God’s power, unless we turn from the Spirit, lose sight of the vision and get lost in the fog of the daily confusion of life.
The world is filled with wandering souls searching for a safe harbor, there are notable schisms in Islam and false religions present a multitude of voids to be filled with the Spirit of the living God. This is the day the Lord has made.
The confusion and tribulation which can cause us to withdraw also causes people to turn toward God for their salvation and we must not disregard this opportunity. We must be there to meet that need. This great opportunity is upon us. We are the people of vision to prophecy who dream and act. The strength of the Holy Spirit is ours for the mission. This is our time and it has never been greater. We must pursue the moment and not become lost in the fog.
Tom Wright is the Executive Director of Global Outreach and a director of Barry Wood Ministries. |