And what does it not mean?
Years ago I began to realize that my Baptist upbringing had both prepared me in some ways and failed me in some ways for my future walk with God.
My Christianity was lacking power. Power to walk uprightly before God. Power to do the work of the Christian witness.
God intervened, and through the full gospel business men’s organization, I came to discover that what I had believed to be extinct giftings were actually still in force in the body of Christ. They were not extinct as I had been taught.
But I also soon discovered that these gifts were also the source of much frustration, because they did not deliver what “I” had expected. And so my faith wavered. You see the carnal mind does not receive things of God with a right understanding. This is why Paul tells us that we must. “Take on the mind of Christ”.
So, I have since all of this begun to realize that my charismatic experiences have both prepared and also at times failed me in my understanding of God’s truth for my life.
You see our ignorant and uneducated self who comes to understand the need for salvation thinks that he has arrived and that he is the apple of his Fathers eye. But in truth, I am as a mortal not even, yet, what God seeks to make of me as His new creation. And although I/we are being used and trained for a future eternity of service to God and to others (to each other), and although positionally in Christ we are seated with Him in the heavenlys, still my life here has not been to make God’s gifts known to man through my will, but to accomplish His will for others for whom we pray. To do His will not our own is our greatest joy.
Just as the Baptist’s were totally wrong about the gifts of the Spirit not being for today; so were the charismatic’s totally wrong concerning the purpose for those gifts in my life. They were not given that I might tell God what to do through me, but that God might inspire my use of them in His time with His wisdom in control, and just at the time when He would see fit to bless my vessel for use in another’s life, because they have need that God wants met. We are not our own we are bought with a price, to be under His control for the unique purposes of His own.