As a child, one of the first things I learned about God was that He could be everywhere anytime, all present all the time. It’s called omnipresence. But if God is everywhere all the time, what’s the big deal about His presence? The big deal is that God is not limited by His abilities. Because God can be everywhere anytime, it doesn’t mean He has to be anywhere all the time. He can remove His presence.
Remember Ezekiel’s wheel? We sang the song as kids, “Ezekiel saw the wheel way up in the middle of the air…” Ezekiel had this vision of God removing his presence, removing his glory (the wheel) from Israel. Sometimes we talk about the manifest presence of God, this is something different from the omnipresence of God, it is God making his presence known. You understand, it is this presence which is the key to blessing, the key to transformation.
Revival always begins with an arrival… it begins in a revelation of Jesus himself and a sense of his nearness. Duncan Campbell, who was involved in a move of God that transformed his region, described the experience simply as (we became) “a community saturated with God.”
And you may already know this… when God is in the house, the house overflows with his blessing. When God is in the city, the city overflows with his blessing. Do you realize how deeply people need and long for God’s blessing in their life? Do you realize how often people came to God as the last hope? I minister from a deep conviction that when people come to Calvary, if all they can find is us…they will leave disappointed.
A pastor of a church in Texas was having lunch with a recent visitor, and asked him, “What did you like and dislike about our service? The man said, “I disliked the fact that in your church I didn’t know any of the songs. I felt like an outcast.” “I understand that,” the pastor said, “we need to be more sensitive to that. What was it you liked?” “I like the fact,” he replied, “that you expect God to come. You really think He’s going to show up.”
And isn’t that what it’s all about? If God doesn’t come, why should anybody else? We long for the Father’s blessing…we need the Father’s blessing. But his blessing is always wrapped up in his presence. That’s why I am so attracted to these words in Matthew 18:20
For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them.
My presence is there. My blessing is coming. All it takes is two or three. When two or three come together, God is in the house… and blessing is on the way. Because the key to extraordinary transformation…awe-inspiring overflowing blessing is the presence of Jesus.
In fact it is the presence of Jesus that gives power to prayer. Go back just a sentence and read Matthew 18:19-20,
Again, I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything you ask for, it will be done for you by my Father in heaven. For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them.
Last week 8 local congregations gathered on a Sunday morning to worship and pray and listen to the Gospel proclaimed. Everyone agreed, it was a great morning. Why? Because God was there. Why? Because two or three of us came together in Jesus name. What would happen if tow or three of us came together more often?