Just Another Devotion
We are in the midst of our second conference here in Cameroon. Every morning we start with a devotion. It’s part of the program. I have been on many retreats and conferences, and many times they begin the day with a devotion. Today was no different. A pastor got up, opened the Word of God, and shared a brief reflection on it. Then he suggested a worship song, which led to another song, which led to the pastor sharing a word from the Holy Spirit, and suddenly the room is exploding in prayer, singing, weeping, and praying in the Spirit. This wasn’t an exception, it’s the norm. This is Africa, this is the hungering and thirsting after the Lord in an uninhibited way. We are so controlled and resistant to anything that is not “normal” in our culture. Yet, where I sit, I see a people and a spirit that says, “Lord, move!” “Shake the room, move in my life…I’ll lay prostrate before you, I’ll weep before you, I’ll cry out to you to move in my life.” Why do I choose to work in a place like this? I think the answer is simple: I want to move with a people who are recklessly abandoned to God and to following His leading.
I’ll never forget leading devotions in Kumasi, Ghana to 300 Scripture Union leaders in 1984. I was 21 years old and the topic was prayer. I gave a brief overview on the topic, supported it with scripture and then I asked them to pray for my father who was, at the time, an alcoholic. What happened next profoundly changed me forever. The room exploded in intercession, every leader fell on their face or stood up and began to shout, weep, pray, beseeching God to deliver my father and save him. Around 1993-1994, I saw my father’s heart change, I saw him repent, and I saw him soften his heart toward God and toward his family. I believe he was converted in that time frame. He died on January 23, 1995. I believe the prevenient grace of God was working in my father’s heart, and God’s throne room was shaken on a particular day in 1984.
Next time you have a private devotion, find a place where you can be free and ask the Holy Spirit to set you free to worship and pray to experience God in the way He desires, and not necessarily the way we expect it to happen.
Changing the world, in Jesus’ name, one relationship at a time.