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“This is how God showed his love for us: God sent his only Son into the world so we might live through him.” 1 John 4:10.
Have you ever met one of those incredible people who despite their having no training in their area of expertise excel in the vocational endeavor they’ve embarked upon? These exceptional people often have the personality, the gift of the gab or life experience to make them perfect for a role they have no traditional training in. If you know someone like this you’ll probably love hanging out with them and have the same sense of amazement at their fumbling forward into constant success as I do with those friends of mine.
I’ve found it’s also possible to find these people in spiritual vocations be they communicating heavenly truth, building heavenly community or speaking heavenly poetry. Their lives aren’t necessarily marked by that strange grace-success but by a creativity or mind so natural to them they breathe progress. Of course there’s nothing wrong with that in itself, these are beautiful people.
The limitation is however that a great mind or a talented individual in themselves don’t contain the necessary qualifications for a legacy leaving spiritual life. It’s not that they can’t leave a beautiful legacy or that there’s anything wrong with the DNA of their natural gifting, it’s just more true that the kingdom of heaven progresses through the dwelling of God’s grace among his people through Pentecost empowerment.
This is the leveling field of God’s divine grace, that the intelligent, the wise and the gifted are in equal qualification with the unlearned and unconfident nobodies in whom the world refuses to believe.
Long before Jesus rose miraculously from the grave humanity was talented and gifted. Great minds, brilliant architects, leaders and artists graced the earth. These creatures of the Creator progressed humanity and added to the cultural beauty of our history but there was one irrefutable issue, we toiled in our work and it rarely took eternal effect. "All is meaningless" as the famous wisdom teacher wrote as our working for progress often ended up starting a new cycle of eventual death in the industry we strived in. Divine life wasn’t yet fully flowing in our works, not like it was intended.
Enter Pentecost, the experience of God’s divine presence not just upon, not just visiting, but indwelling a people group in such a way that their talents, works and brilliance became uniquely heaven empowered. Our toil turned to rest and our love starting busting out internally from eternal wells rather than a self exertion of brute strength and desire.
What this means is that love itself, demonstrated in all our work and creative endeavors, went from something we need to grow in to something we simply need to flow in. A Pentecost-less life can achieve much out of the raw strength of it’s personal talent, but a Pentecost-full life can not only achieve it with a greater longevity, but a greater love.
Why? Because God had prepared these works for us since the beginning of time, works that will add color to the canvas of the world in a way we could have only dreamed about even days before our Upper Room experience. We're now not just living, we're living through Him.
So, are you living your life purely from your natural ability? Do you love from the small well of your own storehouse? Are your dreams easily achievable within the realms of hard work and a little luck? Then quite possibly your life, your love and your dreams are in danger of a Pentecost-less existence. It could be time again to come to the water and drink of the strength of heaven who will lead you in the direction of eternal pleasure as well as fruitful work.
We weren’t made just to live only naturally brilliant lives, we were made to live divinely empowered one’s. We’re new creations living through the Pentecost-full life of Christ, breathing creativity into every human domain with a legacy that will leave the world speechless before it’s humility.
(Blog photo: A typical Western image of the Pentecost by Duccio di Buoninsegna)