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Silence is Golden

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I am sitting here late at night and the whole family is asleep. The house is exceptionally quiet, and it is very pleasant. Don’t get me wrong – I love being the father of four, but there is not often I have a chance for a little still!

But that got me thinking about Elijah and his desire to encounter God. God wasn’t in the earthquake and God wasn’t in the fire. God was in the still, small voice.

Yet it seems to me that within the charismatic world all we do is about the earthquake and the fire. Fire conferences, fire clubs, fire meetings, shake the nations songs and worship, the whole lot. We are all looking for revival, all looking for that next explosion.

What if God isn’t in the revival? What if God isn’t in the conference? What if God isn’t in the explosion?

What if God is in the still and the small? What if God is in you baking a cake for your lonely neighbour? What if God is in the encouraging text to the discouraged Christian? What if God is in you turning off the dull insipid TV programme and reading a chapter or two of the Bible and thinking about His love and grace?

We all admire the spectacular, but what if in our search for the spectacular we are missing the supernatural. There was no healing meeting in the book of Acts. Peter healed the beggar on the way to the church, and then saw salvations. We would have taken the beggar to the meeting, and made him listen to I AM THE LORD THAT HEALETH THEE a thousand times because we think God is in the FIRE, not in the small voice: I have something, and I am going to give it to you.

Philip walked away from the revival and the joy and the healings to go and minister to one hungry man reading the Scriptures who wanted to know the Messiah.

Paul interrupted his letter to the Philippians, his favourite church, to ensure a couple of ladies were speaking to each other.

Maybe you don’t have the skills to change a nation, but you can change one person’s life. Today (or possibly tomorrow as it is pretty much bed time here) you could take a small, still, peaceful action and lead someone into a better life.

I am not against numbers, I am not anti-numbers. I was told by God to move to London and build a church of thousands. But this week we took our Living Church (house church, cell, whatever label suits you) and broke it into two groups. It went from one group of 13-15 to two groups of about 6. And the testimonies from the two groups were exponentially more than the testimonies from the one. Why? Silence. The still and the small. People could share issues, people could discuss, people weren’t afraid to share their soul.

Sometimes loud is awesome. But God was in the still. So why are our churches sometimes the least quiet places on the planet?

Today I ask you: just for a day, don’t beg God for fire or for an earthquake in your life, but just listen to the still and the small and follow that. I believe that in the long run you will see more results than just sitting and expecting an earthquake to throw everything in your lap.

Life Lessons From Road Runner #2: Read the Fine Print

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Lesson 2: Not effective on Road Runners (or Read the Small Print)

In one episode of Road Runner, the Wile E Coyote buys a bottle of earthquake pills. These earthquake pills are designed to cause an earthquake in the live of anyone who eats them.

Road Runner eats all the pills, because they are disguised as bird seed, and runs off. Wile E Coyote waits and waits, but there is no earthquake. He takes some of the pills himself as he is upset they are defective. Only then does he read the small print: CAUTION: Not Effective on Road Runners.

I want you to know that the devil has slipped things into your life, into your family, into your workplace, into your church. He wants earthquakes of depression and strife and envy to explode everywhere you go. But the devil has forgotten to read the small print: Not Effective on People Who Walk in Love.

If you walk in love, you can walk with anyone. Walking in love never has gone to the divorce court, walking in love has never split a church. You can be immune to the attacks of the enemy – immune to the lies he wants to feed you – by choosing to walk in love. You don’t have to find the love – it is already in your heart because God poured it out there (Romans 5.5).

The next time the devil tempts you to have an earthquake in your life: to shout and scream and swear at someone, to cut someone out of your life, to run away from a place you know you should be in, remember the fine print.

Caution: Not Effective on Road Runners.

And walk on by, singing BEEP BEEP as you, immune to the wiles of the devil.

Blessings,
Ben

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