Beneath a Massive Downpour
Websites often have an issue with maintaining new content. They literally will pay firms to create content in order to keep themselves fresh and relevant. We do understand this because it’s a lot of work to maintain relevancy and to stay current. We have the daily blog and devotions, the weekly podcasts, regularly posted articles, and the monthly message released in mp3 and CD formats. As one of the people who edit all this content, I understand—it’s quite an undertaking.
The amazing thing with Shulamite Ministries is that we’re not working to drum up content. I see us more as a rain collector. We’re running beneath a massive outpouring of the Spirit’s revelation, praying to catch some in a little bucket.
In the past few weeks, there has been a literal downpour. Each of the sites has shared the richest of revelation from our rain barrel. We are weeks out with podcasts and still have plenty of additional files to edit. Recently we met to record a story that revealed how to access our highest spiritual gifts, just in order not to lose it. (Look for it in the weeks to come via the Message of the Month as well as in the podcasts.) I want to share a bit with you from that meeting that ties together all that we’re currently saying on each of our sites.
The Downpour of the Spirit
In Martha’s series Conquered by the Blood, she reads an excerpt of something I wrote in 2006 about surrendering to the cross but not dying on it. I gave an example about how Peter had great commitment in Matthew 26:26-35, where he says to Christ, “Even if I must die with You!” But Peter’s committed love and surrendered spirit to the process didn’t give him the power to perform the actual task. Love that professes to die for the Lord can’t produce it by a determination of the flesh. This is evidenced by what we see later. During Jesus’ crucifixion, Peter’s determined will was tested to the max to reveal the impotence of his steadfastness.
This humbling of Peter is not the amazing part. What’s amazing is what’s revealed in Acts 3:11-26. Peter was able to address others on the very same thing that he himself was previously guilty. He could stand there, chastising them for the same sin of denying Christ, without feeling the shame of his own deeds. How could this man, who walked with Christ and denied Him three times, so forthrightly correct others for the very same sin? Was he now in self-righteousness? No! Because the Cross life had so struck and killed the Peter-life with all its grand commitment, this allowed for the resurrected life of Christ to rise and shine in the new man, Peter.
Peter bore the shame of his denial of Christ and wept bitterly in the moment, but Christ’s Blood and washing erased it from his shame-filled consciousness. His once self-willed, old nature, with all its fortitude, yielded way for the Holy Spirit to bring forth Peter’s living, new creation. Peter wasn’t marked by shame because Peter was no longer there.
The Acts-Peter is a different man than the Matthew-Peter. Where Peter in Matthew professed and chose, the Peter in Acts had the Spirit’s performance of the very thing he committed himself to do.
In the weeks to come, as we discuss and write about the Blood, our motive, shame and holiness, we pray it will encourage you in your own faith and the reality of Christ’s resurrection in your NEW CREATION—your new life.