Rethinking Christian Unity – Laying Down Our Differences @frankviola

“Let me rehearse a true story on this score.

Many years ago, I watched two very different groups of Christians meet together to express their oneness in Christ. One group was charismatic; the other wasn’t. After a few joint meetings, the sparks began to fly.

I could rant on about the war-story details, but I’ll spare you. Let me just say that a few months after we merged together, we witnessed a church split. And our strained efforts at preemptive peacemaking and spiritual finessing couldn’t prevent it.

Yet with our garments still smoking, those of us who remained together came to an agreement. An agreement that would change my life. It was this: that all of us lay down our view of spiritual gifts at the foot of the cross. So we did.

Each one of us agreed to drop whatever we thought or experienced about the working of the Holy Spirit. We died to it completely. We gave it up. And we asked the Lord to teach us all over again as little children (Matt. 18:3).

From that point on, our entire focus shifted from what we thought we knew about the Holy Spirit to the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. We resolved to strip down to Christ alone, and we set our eyes exclusively on Him. After about a year, something miraculous occurred.

There rose up—out of death, out of the grave in the newness of life—the gifts of the Spirit. But they didn’t look like anything we had seen in the Pentecostal/charismatic movement. And they certainly didn’t look like anything in the Church of Christ tradition. (All things look different in resurrection.)

Those of us who remained and committed to toughing out the storm were “built together.” And I experienced something I had only read about in the Bible—I saw two very diverse groups of Christians love one another through their differences. The result was what Paul declared in 1 Corinthians 1:10.

This experience, while bloody at first, proved to me in living color that the unity of the faith is more than a pious ideal. Healthy church life is nonsectarian, nonelitist, and nonexclusive. It may involve much long-suffering, forbearance, and dying a thousand deaths.

But that’s exactly what Paul said the price would be for preserving the unity of the Spirit:

With all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love, endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace (Ephesians 4:2–3, NKJV).”

Article taken From – Rethinking Christian Unity (Frank.V)

Unityword

Ghost – Presence Of Holy Spirit

Why are so many people ‘Christians’ but live such a spirit-less life?

Its hard question to answer, I cant say I am a shining example of a ‘spirit filled person’ but im starting notice how much we all forget about God who lives within us. I was reminded in this clip how much the Holy Spirit is a real person, a part of God that is daily in our lives. I tend to lean on my own understanding rather than seeking God and allowing the Holy Spirit to help me… counsel me… refine me! I think its time for change…, are you interested in change? Have a read and watch this below.

SOME AREN’T AWARE OF THE HOLY SPIRIT.
While Apollos was at Corinth, Paul took the road through the interior and arrived at Ephesus. There he found some disciples 2 and asked them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?” They answered, “No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit.” Acts 19:1-3

SOME RESIST THE HOLY SPIRIT.
“You stiff-necked people, with uncircumcised hearts and ears! You are just like your fathers: You always resist the Holy Spirit! Acts 7:51

THE HOLY SPIRIT WILL

COMFORT YOU.
16 And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you forever… John 14:16 KJV

COUNSEL YOU.             
13 But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. John 16:13
“Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, ‘This is the way; walk in it.’” Isaiah 30:21

 CONVICT YOU.
8 When (the Spirit) comes, he will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgment: John 16:8

Basically we learnt to look for God ‘the Holy Spirit’ in our daily circumstances, not just presume its our conscience or our self awareness identifying the needs and wants of others. We decided in our small group that if we allow God to be more involved in our situations, and we listened more to the Holy Spirit we might start to know God more intimately. I am thinking the more we get to know the Holy Spirits groanings and directions, the closer we will be understanding how God wants to direct your walk and guide you. What a belessing it would be to understand what Gods wants you to do in each situation! It truely would be like having God directing your every move and decision.. what a wonderful hope and prayer.

http://www.lifechurch.tv/watch/ghost/1

Spiritual Gifts

Ghost – Series on Spiritual Gifts

Craig Groeschel

http://www.lifechurch.tv/watch/ghost/1 
Ever really wondered if spriritual gifts should be used today, or have been to afraid to know what the bible says about Spiritual Gifts? Watch this series.. it makes it so easy to understand and its a great resource for every church. I believe in spiritual gifts, let God change you and challenge you in these four clips! then tell me your ideas..

Learn; The Presence, The Power, Spiritual Gifts and being Filled with the Holy Spirit

I would like to hear about your walk with God and what your spiritual gift is?