Since the pandemic started there have been many prophetic words that have said that there is going to be a new move of the Spirit, possibly around Pentecost. A pentecostal wave of the Spirit that is going to change us. There have also been words that talk about it being very different, about God doing a new thing.
I believe that the new thing that God is doing has already started. And it started last week – around Pentecost. I believe that this wave of injustice awareness that is forcing people to face up to the harsh reality of racism is a move of the Holy Spirit.
There have also been many words over the past year about unity. I believe that God is challenging us to dig deep into the issues of justice that mean that so many are oppressed because of their colour and that the unity he is moving us towards cannot happen until we begin to address these issues of justice.
During my reflections I woke up one night with the phrase “justice roll on like rivers” – a phrase that comes out of Amos. It’s Amos 5:24 But let justice roll down like waters, and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream
Beautiful words. Words that make us think good, kind thoughts. Words that take us to a good place
But before these words come some pretty hard criticisms of the way religious people were acting
What we see before us is a wake-up call to the church. To look into itself and see where it is racist. But we have to remember the church is made up of individuals. Yes, we are one body, but each of us has to take responsibility for our own guilt in this matter. All of us need to be looking into ourselves to try and see where we are racist, where we have critical thoughts about those who are different from us, where we have kept silent.
Rivers feature a lot in scripture. I think my favourite is a description of the same river, one flowing the temple in Ezekiel and the same one flowing from God and the throne in Revelation.
In Ezekiel it gets wider and wider and deeper as it goes. For me, this river represents the unity of the church. I’ve mentioned that before at Springwater. And as it flows the trees on its banks bring healing to the nations. When we start to address the issues of systemic racism and its injustices, as a church we are joining in that river that takes us to a place where nations will be healed.
A place of unity