“It seems that today we are all living in crisis, financial crisis, terrorist attacks, which causes us to not know how to face tomorrow. However, Christians don’t need to be afraid, because every crisis is God’s opportunity,” exhorted a Taiwanese-American pastor.
Rev. Tong Liu, senior pastor of River of Life Christian Church in Santa Clara, California, encouraged Christians to be the instruments of God's miracles in this tumultuous time during a gospel rally held in New York City.
In his message, Liu said if you want to be the instruments used greatly by God, then you must first put the new wine into new wineskin (Luke 5:38-39). The Lord has taught us to make new wineskins for the new wines, but those who love drinking wine would know that aged wine taste better than new wine. In this case, why does the Lord want to give us new wine?
Liu reminded the believers to never deny the new just because the old is good, for something greater will take place.
“When believers first come to faith and churches are first built, everything is new, but after some time passes ‘traditions’ will start coming out, and many people will hold on to the past and refuses to renew.
“How do you know that when this new wine becomes aged that it will not taste better than the old aged wine?”, asked Liu. ‘Revival’ is leading us before the God who continuously does new things. In the book of Acts, the disciples of Jesus no longer are just observers of miracles, but are the instruments to perform miracles; not only experiencing God’s presence, but co-working with God.
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Furthermore, we must expand our capacity for god, he said, because God uses ordinary people, such as Peter and David, who have all made mistakes and fallen; however, they have very big capacity for god – don’t limit God’s work in your life.
Moses allowed God to do new things in his life through accepting and obeying God’s words. When God wanted him to raise his staff over the red sea, he obeyed and went forward, leading the Israelites toward the new territory.
“Do not grumble. You need to expand your capacity, for God always do what is beyond our imagination,” said Liu.
Lastly, you need to obey the Holy Spirit’s guidance. For those who believe, the Holy Spirit, who is the comforter, our guide, lives inside of us, so we mustn’t put out the Holy Spirit’s fire; when we never respond, the Holy Spirit will only speak less and less. In one instance, Liu stayed up late to prepare for a sermon, but he didn’t have any inspirations, so he kept praying to God. What’s interesting was that the urge that the Holy Spirit gave him is to call a sister. At first, he thought it was Satan’s trap, but after praying that urge was still there, so he obeyed.
“When that sister picked up the phone, she asked why did I call, and I honestly told her that I didn’t know why, but it is obeying the spirit’s guidance. To my surprise, she started weeping. She explained that she has been facing many difficulties recently and she prayed that night that if God still loves her please give her a sign.”
When you hear the Holy Spirit’s guidance and obey, then miracles will happen naturally. Thus, a true Christian’s life is never boring, for you never know what God wants you to do next. Liu encouraged the believers in New York to become the pathways of miracles in this generation – in a headwind situation, hold on to the wind of opportunity, fulfilling the extraordinary will of God.
[Editor's note: reporter Quan Wei contributed to this report.]