Wow, what a service tonight!
Our church is having revival this weekend, which basically means church every evening from Thursday through Saturday and twice on Sunday with a guest evangelist. It’s the church’s 15th anniversary, apparently, and they always have the same preacher back for their anniversary revival.
Thursday’s service was good — one of the ladies in the church who has heart problems got up in the middle of the service and several of us went to check on her and pray with her. When we came back to the service the evangelist started preaching the same thing we’d been telling her, almost word for word, without having a clue what we’d said.
Friday’s service was powerful, there was a lot of singing and shouting and hollering (as is known to happen from time to time in a pentecostal service :)… a lot of people got touched in the service and the Spirit was there in force.
Tonight’s service was different. I had written out a song I wrote a while back and was thinking about singing Thursday and didn’t get the chance. Friday was not the night to sing it, and I had all but convinced myself I was going to forget about it. About an hour before church though, God laid it on my heart to go ahead and write out a testimony to go along with the song, just in case He decided to have me sing it.
So I did, it ate up all the time I was going to use for something else, and I left here just in time to pull into church right before the service started. By the time I got there I’d just about decided to sing something else instead, but when they asked for testimonies the first person that got up to testify was someone that generally goes on forever. She kept it short and sweet, and I don’t remember what she said exactly, but I knew I had to go through with it.
In any case, I went ahead and got up there and gave a testimony for the first time ever in front of people like that. I peppered it between the verses of the song I’d written, which I’d never sung for anyone before either. Somehow, miraculously, I didn’t screw it up. I felt like I was dying of thirst but I was able to sing it all out without my voice wavering anyway, and people appeared to be genuinely blessed by it. The song leader even made me hug her before she let me go back to my seat.
After that someone else got up to sing a song with the same basic message, after looking me straight in the eye and testifying that I had been an inspiration to her, whether I realized it or not (whoa…!). Then the song leader sang a powerful song she’d written, that also had the same message.
THEN the visiting evangelist got up and preached a sermon on the exact same thing! I love services like that. The mood was different than it had been Thursday or Friday. We were all more subdued and quiet, but the Spirit was still there, just moving in a different way. The evangelist kept saying that He didn’t know why it was going that way, but he figured there was a reason. He also kept saying that he didn’t know who it was for, but he figured it was for someone.
It was for me.
I’m not used to pentecostal services yet, and I was a little concerned about some of the carrying’s on of Friday’s service (I wasn’t quite sure about some of that ‘slain in the Spirit’ stuff). The other testimonies tonight put my mind at ease over what had happened yesterday, and the general mood of the service made it much easier for me to go forward and get the prayer I needed tonight.
For the first time in a few weeks I left a service knowing that I had done everything the Lord had asked me to do — and I left with a peace I haven’t felt in ages.
Praise the Lord!