The Power of the Holy Spirit

With Christians the power of the Holy Spirit is prominent.  Many do fellowship in the spirit and act according to divine commands from Almighty God, by holding the Scriptures to be authoritative.  Since Pentecost, Christians have been blessed by this outpouring.  This awareness brings overwhelming experiences often accompanied by visions of heaven. Living according to this life-giving spirit their utterances are inspired by God.  Being led by the spirit people walk in the light and are full of life.  Alexander Pope (1688–1744), an 18th-century English poet said, “To err is human; to forgive, divine.”  Those who walk in the spirit are quick to forgive.  Like Pope they realize life entails this forgiveness which comes with blessings.

Community Spirit

This power of the spirit brings about unifying bonds.  These are with other people during their lifetime.  These relationships are divinely sealed with friendships.  Many Christians form lasting bonds with their spouses.  But as members of the church they also devote themselves to pastoral outreach.  They exemplify what’s ideal between the liturgical center and the periphery of worshipers, and there’s a natural osmosis between the church’s hierarchy and parishioners.

In the church much thought goes into the role of the sacraments.  Every attempt is made to enhance a family’s life.  Young people learn about standards concerning what it means to date and be happily married.  Christians’ values are perpetuated as the foundation on which to build relationships inside and outside the church’s community.

The Messianic Age

The power of the spirit has ushered in the Messianic Age.  It brings with it the inspiration of the Gospel.  It’s the new age of blessings bestowed on every believer.  Being a new creation in Christ people are inspired by the spirit.  By their industriousness the church benefits from their talents.  Believers who experience the outpouring of faithfulness are inspired through these lights.  It isn’t unusual to hear Christians describe with hopeful joy that it feels like heaven on earth.

George Bernard Shaw (1856–1950), an English playwright wrote, “Imagination is the beginning of creation.  You imagine what you desire, you will what you imagine and at last create what you will.”  The Messianic Age is more than our imagination.  It’s a superb gift which has been freely given to every man, woman and child concerning how they must open their hearts to the Lord.

Harvest of Mankind

Our salvation is guaranteed.  It’s what God has completed on the cross.  This state is the seed of divine life open to everyone who seeks Christ.  It begins with the circumcision of the heart, frees us from the liberation of legalisms, and it’s a gift of charity.  As people live they will have renewed encounters with the Risen Christ.  As holy people they will be defending the Christian traditions in a broken world.  Being baptized Christians they are the natural followers of Christ.  Og Mandino (1923–1996), an author said, “Always do your best.  What you plant now, you will harvest later.”  Be sure to sow good seed for your harvest will be plentiful.  Be fishers of men for the Lord because you’re assured your catch will be abundant.

Our Political Culture

Love ought to transcend politics and political parties.  Human beings regardless of their classes, creeds, ideologies and races should be viewed as equals.  Whites, African Americans, Asians and Native Americans won’t be just viewed as voting blocks to be wooed, but rather by what they desire, and that ought to be the business of politicians.  Debates about the environment, the role of religion in public life, and the future of families will always be part of the public dialogue.  Health issues, emotional, physiological, and psychological that may cripple us, must be balanced, and these problems addressed.

There are some things we must focus on when considering the elections of politicians.  Listen to what Charity Sunshine Tillemann-Dick (b. 1983), a soprano, composer and presenter said, “Perhaps we should worry less about judging people for being Mormon or Baptist or Muslim or gay or straight or black or white or Latino or by their religious or political brands and worry more about electing thoughtful, serious and ethical politicians on both sides of the political [a]isle who are willing to work together for progress.”  We’re the voters who make these decisions.  It’s you and me.  Can it be said then that we end up getting who we vote for, and not necessarily the best candidates?

Politicians & Inspiration

Politicians are able to show their positive side when they visit sick people, attend churches, and tour retirement homes.  These are the moments when they touch lives positively.  But when they support unjust wars, face accusations of embezzling funds, and disgraced by having bad morals many of us are turned off by them.  Billy Graham (1918–2018), an evangelical Baptist minister explained, “When wealth is lost, nothing is lost; when health is lost, something is lost; when character is lost, all is lost.”  On the other hand when politicians accentuate the positives of life their statures grow in the public’s eye.

That’s why it’s so necessary for politicians to appeal to their constituents positively.  As Benjamin Franklin (1706–1790), a founding father of the United States said, “Tell me and I forget.  Teach me and I remember.  Involve me and I learn.”  Politicians must not only present their plans effectively, but they ought to be teachers instructing us about public issues.  Through them citizens will be able to separate “facts” from “fiction,” and “truths” from “half-truths.”  Messages from politicians rely on the timeliness, spontaneity, and the effectiveness of the media.

Doing What’s Right

If politicians fall from grace it’s for them to come clean, and not continue to conceal the details of their indiscretions.  As co-creators it’s for them to build up communities, and protect us from evil.  We don’t want to witness other Watergate experiences in America, or in other societies around the world.  Politicians must be able to talk to us, think about issues, and to legislate sensible policies.  That’s why it’s important that they must be truthful.  When they stress the negatives, nothing is more damning than for people to have negative results – “curses” as opposed to “blessings.”

Tommy Smothers (b. 1937), a comedian, composer and musician said, “The only valid censorship of ideas is the right of people not to listen.”  Politicians are in positions to present voters with a variety of dishes.  These may be the best political entrees possibly, but it’s still up to the voters to decide whether we’ll taste their offerings.  People will accept what’s right to them.  We who believe in democratic processes hope our decisions are right most of the time.  And even if we make mistakes, the Lord promises that the Holy Spirit will work all things – good and bad, for our good.

Our Pioneer of Salvation

Jesus Christ is the pioneer of our salvation.  He’s our Savior from any danger, distress or bondage.  Because of him we’ve received blessings, joy, and know that we’re saved. In him we’re assured of living a resurrected life under his Lordship.  Here we’ll have glory through his grace.  He has filled us with the power of the Holy Spirit because we’re sons and daughters of the Most High.  We’ve been emancipated and sanctified from evil which has befallen us.  As a result we’re blessed with the promise of eternal life.

Tom Brokaw (b. 1940), a TV journalist, and author said, “I think people of my generation became journalists – you know, right after the broadcast pioneer fathers – because we wanted to report the big stories.”  Brokaw was obviously explaining how pioneers influenced some journalists’ decision in pursuing their careers.  Nevertheless the biggest story for Christians is about the pioneer of salvation, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Pressures of the World

It’s all what Christ accomplished on the Cross at Calvary that has made his work a bastion against disease, suffering, and death.  No longer must we fear afflictions, because Christ is our healer, and there’s a purpose for everything under the sun.  He’s our fort against natural and unnatural disasters.  We’ve witnessed God’s forgiveness and wrath.  Some however continue to live in ignorance about the truth of eternal life haunted by demons, and the fear of hell.  But Jesus Christ understands our dilemma, and is willing to free us from our folly.

Helen Thomas (1920–2013), an opinion columnist wrote, “We don’t go into journalism to be popular.  It is our job to seek the truth and put constant pressure on our leaders until we get answers.”  If it’s all about finding answers, people must turn to Jesus Christ as the most reliable source.  In every matter, he’s the epitome of truth.  It’s good to be blessed by the Holy Spirit in knowing what’s right and true.

Bondage of Futility

 In our world some people are living defeated lives.  They are subject to oppression, social degradation, and want basic necessities.  They have turned to political leaders for deliverance, but often end up disappointed. From the news they have witnessed disappointment when it comes to solving economic and social problems.  There’s alienation of the races in finding solutions about racial harmony.  Some voters are at each other throats and might have given up on the system.  But the Prince of Peace is alive and well, and he’s eager to intervene if we’ll only let him.

Nelson Mandela (1918–2013), president of South Africa said, “We pledge ourselves to liberate all our people from the continuing bondage of poverty, deprivation, suffering, gender and other discrimination.”  These words from Mandela – as praiseworthy as they are, desire the commitment of those aligned with Christ.  Still there’s much that we don’t understand about people’s motives.  Some live in bondage for all sorts of reasons, but it takes works of faith, and a belief in God to set people free.

Abraham Lincoln (1809–1865), the 16th president of the United States said, “Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.”  Jesus “fully man and God” passed this test.  It’s for us to emulate him, and follow our only pioneer of salvation for eternity.  He’s the glorious and outstanding model deserving of our love, praise and glory.