Monday, June 24, 2013

What does it mean to be anointed by God (Psalm 28:8), just a few questions to chew on... with a Dwight L. Moody story.

SCRIPTURE: Psalm 28:8 (CEB)
The Lord is his people's strength; he is a fortress of protection for his anointed one.

One of the great preachers in U.S. history is D. L. Moody. He pastored in Chicago and there is still a wonderful Bible College there that bears his name and values.

Mr. Moody was a successful minister, but by his own admission, he lacked the power in his ministry. One day two women came up to him after a service. They said, "We have been praying for you."

"Why don't you pray for the people?" he asked. 

"Because you need the power of the Spirit," they said.

"I need the power! Why?" said Mr. Moody.

In relating the incident years after he writes, "I thought I had power. I had the largest congregation in Chicago, and there were many conversions."

Moody also said that in a sense, he was satisfied. He was in a comfort zone. But these two praying women rocked the boat. They told him that they were praying for an anointing by the Holy Spirit.

Mr. Moody could not get this off his mind and he wrote, "There came a great hunger in my soul. I did not know what it was and I began to cry out to God as never before. I felt I did not want to live if I could not have this power for service."

Rev. Moody began crying out for God to fill him. He withdrew, prayed, and sought it over a period of time. He writes the following: "Well, one day, in the city of New York -- oh, what a day! -- I cannot describe it, I seldom refer to it; it is almost too sacred an experience to name. Paul had an experience of which he never spoke for fourteen years. I can only say that God revealed Himself to me, and I had such an experience of His love that I had to ask Him to stay His hand. I went to preaching again. The sermons were not different; I did not present any new truths, and yet hundreds were converted. I would not now be placed back where I was before that blessed experience if you should give me all the world."

The scripture and story brought these questions to mind:

Could we call ourselves the anointed of God?

Have we been anointed by the Holy Spirit?

What would be different in our lives if we were?

Would we dare pray as Mr. Moody prayed?

Do we desire this infilling of the Holy Spirit more than the very next breath?

Are we willing to pursue it with a hungry heart… not resting until the heavens open up and the dove of God descends upon our hearts?

Do we hunger and thirst after God’s righteousness?

Are we ready for the experience of God’s love which would be so powerful that we would ask God to stay his hand?

And here is the larger question: What would happen in our churches if this all became reality?

Such is the case of my devotional life – sometimes just questions… something to chew on during the day. Now I’ve included you in the chewing!

Help us to understand what it means to be your anointed one. 

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