Everyday Spectacular

Imperfections. Ramblings. Life to the Full.

Archive for the tag “Holy Spirit”

Church of the Spilled Blood

I have mentioned that mom and I went to Europe in May. You’ve already heard my luggage woes, but there was so much more to the adventure than that.

When we were finally on our trip, I couldn’t seem to wrap my head around all of the history, the culture, the beauty of what we were seeing.

…Look over here, remnants of the Berlin Wall!

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…Sure, let’s eat reindeer for lunch in Helsinki!

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…Ahhh, I can’t believe we are standing right in front of original Van Goghs and Picassos and Rembrandts in the Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg!

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And the churches, oh, the churches…they are everywhere and they are amazing. The one I was most excited to visit is the Church of the Spilled Blood in St. Petersburg, and it did not disappoint.  The entire inside is built out of teeny-tiny mosaic tiles. Here is what it looks like upclose.

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And here is what all those teeny-tiny tiles look like all together.

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It was breath-taking, beautiful, overwhelming. I kept thinking of the patience required by the artisans who created it in the first place. How were they able to take all those little bits of color and create such magnificent panoramas?

It wasn’t until I got home from our trip that the Lord reminded me that while it may be nice to visit The Church of the Spilled Blood, I AM THE CHURCH OF THE SPILLED BLOOD, every single day of my life. And you are too.

I Corinthians 6:19-20 “Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? For you have been bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body.”

God is the master artisan who is creating the mosaics of our lives. He is the one piecing it all together, all of our experiences, all of our heartaches, all of our joys…they really can come together to create something beautiful. Through the blood of Jesus, we get to be the ones who house His presence, allowing Holy Spirit to illuminate us from the inside out.

My pray for us today is simply this, that when others get around us, they would feel that they had visited the true Church, the one where Jesus is seen and Holy Spirit is felt.

Crazies

I recently found myself defending my Pentecostal views in terms of “I try to avoid crazy at all costs.” What I was trying to explain was that I think things in church should be done in an orderly manner (1 Corinthians 14:40) and that there have been a tremendous amount of abuses in charismatic circles over the years that have made a lot of people leery of anything that has to do with the supernatural.

But the more I think about it, the more I find that, while a bit humorous, my own statement isn’t really accurate.

Because as much as I don’t want to be labeled “crazy”, I’m thinking that maybe that’s exactly what I am. I do believe in order in the church and in avoiding the abuses that I have seen over the years, but I understand that what I really do believe makes me quite the minority in today’s society.

I believe in salvation through Christ alone.

I believe in a God that comes and dwells within me, and that having the power that raised Jesus from the dead in me, absolutely changes the way I am. (Romans 8)

While not a “requirement” for salvation, I believe that people today can have an Acts 2:4 experience in which “All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues  as the Spirit enabled them.” (I experienced this for myself for the first time over 20 years ago, and this prayer language is still as mysterious to me now as it was then.)

I believe that healing through Jesus can and does still happen in our day.

I believe in heaven and hell, and a whole lot of other unpopular things the Bible addresses.

Being me just may be the new crazy. And I guess I’m going to have to be ok with that because the more I study the Bible and invite Jesus into my every-days, the more I realize He is asking me to live a crazy-life for him.

Matthew 16:24-25 “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.  For whoever wants to save their life  will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it.”

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