I was putting my daughter to bed a few nights ago and after reading her a story, I said “ok let’s pray” and then she closed her eyes and said the following
“Lord, please make all the dead people alive again, but not Zombies, I wish you would catch all the Zombies and get rid of them because I don’t like zombies!”
My initial reaction was that of confusion, and curiosity, it was a cute but bizarre prayer! I kinda wanted to say “O bless her!”, but I also wondered where she got that idea from?! We have never let her watch a horror movie, she is way too young (plus I am not that keen on them either!) She has seen “Paranorman” and watched some other people play a game called “Plants Vs Zombies” but for her to piece together the ability of God to bring people back to life and the not very nice concept of zombies, was surprising for me especially at that time of night!
Then on Sunday, one of the verses mentioned in a talk that I heard was Ephesians 5:14 which says
The whole chapter of Ephesians 5 challenges the reader to act how God wants you to! When we do things which are without question against God’s will, and when we even do things that society has made almost the norm, like rude jokes, talking openly about things that would cause our grandparents’ jaws to drop, or even the act of getting so drunk we cannot remember what happened the previous night!
So I started to think “can Christians be like “Zombies“?” “Is it possible that we are so spiritually “asleep” that we are pretty much only functioning on a really basic level? The “walking dead” so to speak?”
- Talking (or murmuring/grunting depending on whether we are a teenager or not!)
- Just existing day to day
- Doing basic tasks without much thought
- Appearing to be spiritually alive but have barely any energy for what we are called to do!
What would cause us to be virtually “walking dead” in a spiritual sense?
- Struggling with temptation
- Struggling with issues at work/school or in our social life
- Not listening to the prompting of the Holy Spirit
- Getting distracted by “the real world“
I believe that, when we allow things to distract or tempt us away from doing what God is telling us, we “leak” the holy spirit, he is still within us, and still can work through us but when we ignore the “prompting of the spirit” we miss out on so much! We not only miss out on seeing amazing things happen, but we miss out on having such a close daily walk with God!
Some of us have forgotten the power of God, he is able to make dry bones become flesh-covered and then into a vast army! Some of us, (perhaps without even realising it!) are stuck at the foot of the cross, constantly wanting the blood of Jesus to wash us and set us free, the only problem is that Jesus isn’t there anymore! He isn’t even just “dry bones” hidden in a cave! He is alive, and what’s even greater is that when we start our “walk” with God, the Holy Spirit has filled us, whenever someone first becomes a Christian they are passionate, “on fire” contagiously so! They are so amazed at what God has done for them they are almost a “handful” and uncontrollable!
I will never forget being at primary school, I was so fired up and confident in God’s love etc, that I managed to convert a friend of mine, strangely before I even made the “confession of faith” myself!! Paul, tells Timothy
When I have been involved in youthwork, I have always been conscious of the fact that although, I (or my fellow youth leaders for that matter!) may have more life experience or knowledge of the bible, the young people I am teaching/speaking to, have the ability to be an example, to remind us “oldies” how to be in our walk with God! Even Paul realised that Timothy as a young person, may not have had the respect and authority that the Rabbis would have held, he could actually be the example that was needed!
Children, generally, have an innate lack of fear, judgement and most of this is down to experience! If a toddler has never been near a high cliff or even near the edge of a high step and had any experience of falling from a small height, they will have no idea of what could happen! As adults we have experienced pain, persecution, rejection so we become fearful of situations and forget that the holy spirit gives us all that we need at the moment we need it! We have the fruits of the spirit:-
We also have the various gifts of the spirit:-
- Word of wisdom
- Word of knowledge
- Gifts of healings
- Distinguishing between spirits
- Interpretation of tongues
We don’t get them all at the same time, we get given them when we need to use them! Not being able to speak in tongues doesn’t mean you are not a christian and does not mean that you are less of christian than those who can!
I am sure every church leader and church member wants to see a revival in their town (at least I hope so!), but I think before any kind of revival can happen we need to get “fired up” again, like the disciples at pentecost! We need to listen and respond to the spirit, so we are less like zombies, and more like living, excited, ecstatic people who know where their hope is found and know that the most amazing thing has happened for them!
My prayer for me, for my town, for the church is this song.