Outpouring 2011

By Terry Wardle

November 6, 2011

Next week we gather again in Macedonia, Ohio for the Outpouring. I am psyched! Joining with other believers to worship, listen to the word, and lift the name of Christ is always exciting. Focusing upon the presence and power of the Holy Spirit for three days only makes it even more so, because the Spirit always comes to bear witness to Jesus and draw all hearts to the gift that is Christ.

I like the way John Nordstorm puts it. John is part of the core team for the Outpouring, a wonderful man and pastor who ministers in Illinois. Last year, in a special seminar during the Outpouring, John reminded us all that the feast of life is in fact Jesus. Not his gifts, nor his power, nor even his matchless grace. While each is critical for sure, the feast is Jesus himself, and the main course of that feast is having a personal and increasingly intimate relationship with the Lord himself.

It is easy to get focused on what Jesus does, and what he offers us, because these graces are so wonderful. But maturity beckons us to move beyond what he does, to Jesus himself. A. B. Simpson, founder of the Christian and Missionary Alliance, put it this ways. In a hymn written over 100 years ago he said, “Once it was the gift, now it is the Giver.” This was Simpsons way of calling followers of Christ to love the Lord above all things, even the wonderful things he does for us.

This year at the Outpouring we are offering the Lord’s Supper at every main service. And John will challenge us each time to set apart Christ in our hearts as the feast given to us all through the love of the Father. What an important reminder and fantastic opportunity. May the Holy Spirit pour out upon us during this Outpouring, empowering us afresh to embrace for ourselves, and then extend to others, The Feast that is Jesus!

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