One may have reason to doubt the real power of Jesus Christ alive and present. 90% disappear after Confirmation. 75% of Catholics no longer attend Mass. Only 13% of Mass-going Catholics even pray before meals. Or, perhaps like the origin of just about every superhero, the power is there, we have it, but we have no idea what we have. Perhaps the answer to so many problems around us is literally in our hands, or rather, in God using our hands.
For a world in great need, God promised that we would be “clothed with power from on high.” (Luke 24:49) He promises we will "do even greater things." (John 14:12) And we are offered this description of all those who say yes today: "The Lord worked through them, confirming what they said by many miraculous signs." (Mark 16:20)
It's been happening throughout the ages. It is happening all over the world. I have to give testimony to numerous examples of real physical, emotional and relational healing that have taken place over the many years of praying in the Holy Spirit. I've witnessed the blind see, the lame walk, broken bones healed, cancer and other diseases healed, broken relationships and lives restored.
This past Pentecost hundreds gathered for our first-ever IGNITE Praying With Fire Conference. It was a powerful response to recent popes call for us to "fan the flame" of sacramental grace through Baptism in the Holy Spirit.
Here's what the popes and papal preacher have to say:
"Today I would like to extend this invitation to everyone: Let us rediscover, dear brothers and sisters, the beauty of being baptized in the Holy Spirit; let us be aware again of our baptism and of our confirmation, sources of grace that are always present. Let us ask the Virgin Mary to obtain a renewed Pentecost for the Church again today, a Pentecost that will spread in everyone the joy of living and witnessing to the Gospel." Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI
“Baptism in the Spirit is not a human invention; it is a divine invention. It is a renewal of baptism and of the whole of Christian life, of all the sacraments.” Fr. Raniero Cantalamessa (papal preacher)
“Open yourselves with docility to the gifts of the Holy Spirit! Receive with gratitude and obedience the charisms that the Spirit does not cease to offer! Do not forget that all charisms are given for the common good... for the benefit of the whole Church!’” Pope St. John Paul II
“Share baptism in the Holy Spirit with everyone in the Church. Prepare the Bride for the Bridegroom who comes!” Pope Francis
If you've been baptized and confirmed you have the power of the Holy Spirit alive within you. Do you believe it? Are you claiming it? Are you alive in it?
We all have close family and friends around us with very real needs. Today don't just pray for them. Ask if you can pray over them. Yeah, they'll think you're weird, and if you're new to it, it may feel weird. Acknowledge it. Then get over it. Together take the step in faith. God wants to use you. If He didn't you wouldn't be reading this right now. Don't worry. It's not about you. It's about the Holy Spirit alive in you. Set aside your doubts.
Put a hand on their shoulder. These are no longer your hands, but God's... reaching down from the heavens through you. Call upon the name of the Lord... praise Him, thank Him for Who He Is, His great, present love for this person... and what He is going to do.
Name the affliction. Heart, mind and body. With confidence in Him, renounce it in the name of Jesus Christ. Listen to God speaking inside-- He will guide you. He will give you an amazing sense of connection, His heart, for this person. And then pray for an outpouring of the Holy Spirit... healing, strength, transformation.
This is not magic. It's not your power. It's God's power alive in you... appointed and anointed to be an instrument of His real, healing, transforming, power. This is the identity and purpose of Christians... to be Christ's real presence and power in this world.
If you've never taken God at His word, it's your turn. Just do it.
And if you're eager to more fully understand and LIVE in this power of the Holy Spirit, in the fullness of our Catholic Faith,Join us for our next ABLAZE: "I have come to bring fire to the earth, and how I wish it were already ablaze." Luke 12:49
For more information go to MassImpact.us/FIRE