While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit fell upon all those who heard the word.
Acts 10:44, NKJV
Lately, in the outpouring our church, the revival song from the ‘90’s Revival Fire Fallhas been stirring. I find myself singing this song all the time, and it seems to capture what is happening in our church.
We are like those who had gathered at Cornelius’s home. We have come together hungry and anticipating the word of the Lord. Little did we know what God had in store for us at the end of June and on July 4. As at Cornelius’s home, many had gathered at Cornelius’s invitation, but no one was real certain of what would happen. Our church had gathered as normal, but nothing about July 4, or the services immediately preceding July 4, were normal. On Sunday, June 24, my wife and I were out of town, and we had a guest fill in for us. Our worship pastor was also out of town. A stirring started. God was interrupting church as normal. On Sunday, July 1, I found myself completely undone in the presence of the Lord at the sense of what He was doing in our congregation. Could this be what we had prayed for? Could God be pouring out the very thing we were asking Him for? Then on Wednesday, July 4, it was undeniable that God was interrupting “church as normal” and we would not be the same.
The believers at Cornelius’s home had gathered, were hungry, many had prayed about what they were to experience. But now, as Peter was preaching, the very gift they had asked for was being poured out. It didn’t come as they had anticipated. The outpouring was not neat and fitting man’s order. God was now in charge and in control. Even as God’s servant preached, Peter was interrupted by God. God interrupted church as normal to deliver exactly what they needed.
Here’s what Jonathan Edwards preached concerning God’s interruptions:
But if God is pleased to convince the consciences of persons, so that they can’t avoid great outward manifestations, even to the interrupting and breaking off those public means they were attending, I don’t think this is confusion, or an unhappy interruption, any more than if a company should meet on the field to pray for rain and should be broken off from their exercise by a plentiful shower. Would to God that all the public assemblies in the land were broken off from their public exercises with such confusion as this, the next Sabbath day! We need not be sorry for the breaking the order of the means, by obtaining the end to which that order is directed: he that is going a journey to fetch a treasure, need not be sorry that he is stopped by meeting the treasure in the midst of his journey.
I agree with Edwards! Lord, would you interrupt our church as normal this Sabbath day!