It’s not uncommon that I hear people share how powerful the experience was when they were baptized after putting their faith in Christ to save them from the hurts, habits and hang-ups that once controlled their lives. It often reminds me of Carrie Underwood’s song, Something in the Water, as if there was some mystical, transforming power that washed them clean. The reality is we are made clean, but not by the water.
Nothing is more exhilarating to me than the celebration of life change! Only God can change us from the inside out, and He does that by exchanging our old sinful life for a new life in Christ! The former persecutor of Christ followers turned missionary and church planter, Paul, the Apostle, experienced a dramatic life change himself and wrote these words about it in 2 Corinthians 5:17.
It grieves me to see a generation of children and parents estranged from one another by the lies of our culture. We’ve put so much ahead of our most important relationships and sacrificed the greater joy and glory that could be ours for promises that can never deliver. But, there is a verse at the very end of the Old Testament that gives me hope!
The transformational power of the Holy Spirit is no respecter of persons. Wherever the good news of Christ is shared, the Holy Spirit is at work transforming lives! Much to the surprise of these Jewish believers, the Holy Spirit moved on Gentiles as well as Jews!
If you track the exponential growth of the church from Pentecost in the Book of Acts and throughout church history, it is nothing short of miraculous! It is what I call the transformational power of the Holy Spirit working in the lives of Christ followers. It began when three thousand new believers were baptized on the day of Pentecost! Wow! Imagine that baptismal celebration!
One of the characteristics of successful people is that they don’t waste time. They make the most of every opportunity regardless of the circumstances. How do you do that? One of my Bible heroes is Paul, the apostle. He was a giant in the faith! When he wrote to the Christ followers in Ephesus and challenged them to make the most of every opportunity, he provided an example for them through his own life.
When God begins a work, He always completes it! You may not feel like you’re making much progress in your faith or that you’ve even stalled, but take heart, God is not through working on you or me! I find so much encouragement in this verse that Paul wrote to Christ followers in Philippi. As difficult as I find the Christian life to live today, I can’t imagine what these struggling saints experienced in the first century.
Each year, we witness the miracle of life change at our annual Super Summer Baptism Celebration at Woodlands Church! It’s the greatest show of faith and my favorite event of the year! What a thrill to see God at work, healing hurts and restoring lives! Each one is a grace story, and we’ve literally witnessed thousands of them!
A wedding ring is a sacred symbol. It has special significance – not only to the one wearing it, but for others as well. It communicates a message of commitment, a relationship of intimacy, and a promise of purity. A wedding ring is more than simply jewelry; it is a sacred symbol.
A divine appointment is when a seeking soul crosses the path of a willing witness and experiences the forgiveness of a gracious God. If you’ve experienced one, you know how miraculous and life-changing it is! There’s nothing else like the thrill that you feel when God is at work in and through you. The unique effect of a divine appointment is the way in which God works.