By Dr. Richard Booker
God shows up when people want Him to show up. As the holy Word of God declares, “Draw near to God and He will draw near to you …” (James 4:8). When God shows up, things happen. When God shows up His people recognize His holy presence, His holy power, His Holy Spirit. When God shows up He gets our attention. He does the unexpected and the extraordinary beyond our control. Our religious familiarity turns into a holy awe of our holy God.
When God shows up He turns an ordinary bush into holy ground. He starts a fire that cannot be consumed. He turns an ordinary cloud into a pillar of divine guidance by day and a pillar of fire by night. When God shows up a mountain is engulfed with smoke and fire and shakes and quakes at the presence of the Lord. When God shows up He surrounds our enemies with an unseen host of angels. When God shows up He gives us victory against all odds.
When God shows up water turns to wine. The blind are made to see; the deaf are made to hear; the lame are made to walk; the mute are made to speak; the dead are brought to life; the storms are calmed and even the wind and the sea obey Him. When God shows up the mighty wind of His Spirit shakes a building and tongues of fire appear on 120 disciples who changed the world. When God shows up a religion about God turns into a relationship with God. Kingdom life replaces churchianity.
When God shows up the comfortable are disturbed and the disturbed are comforted. Sick people are healed, burdens are lifted; sinners become saints, rebels become righteous, mourning is turned to joy, death and disease turn to life and health, darkness turns to light, worldliness turns to holiness, lust turns to love, greed turns to generosity, pride turns to purity, haughtiness turns to humility, complaining turns to praising, weakness turns to strength, creeds turn to deeds, bondage turns to deliverance, hopelessness turns to hope, stress turns to rest, troubles and trials turn to triumph, defeat turns to victory, gloom and doom turns to glory and gratitude, brokenness turns to wholeness, apathy turns to action, hate turns to forgiveness, poverty turns to prosperity, doubt and unbelief turns to faith; self-centeredness turns to others centeredness.
When God shows up people are consumed by the zeal of God. The holy fire of God burns inside them. They can’t stand in His presence. When God shows up people faint, swoon and fall to the ground, they crawl on the floor, they lift their hands, they shout, they sing, they dance, they shake, they tremble, they weep, they laugh, they speak with other tongues, they prophecy, they hunger and thirst after righteousness, they lay hands on people, they pray, they study, they love, they bless, they share, they do strange things because when the Divine touches the human soul; people are going to respond in unusual ways that can’t be explained by the ordinary.
Religious people can’t understand the presence of God. They criticize and ridicule what they can’t understand. But a person who has had an experience with God is never at the mercy of someone who only has a doctrine about God. We should learn to discern the difference between the Holy Spirit, demonic spirits and the flesh. But we should never judge or criticize people who have had an encounter with God we have not had nor understand.
When God shows up the Valley of Dry Bones turns into the miracle of modern Israel. When God shows up holocaust survivors gathered to their ancient Promised Land defeat millions of their enemies from five surrounding nations. When God shows up the desert begins to blossom like a rose; a dead language turns into everyman’s Hebrew, an ancient capital is liberated in 6 days, anti-Semites turn into Zionists, Jews and Gentiles turn into one new man, people who are black, white, brown, red and yellow turn into people who are color blind because there is no color in the Kingdom of God.
When God shows up, the holy blood of Jesus and the Living Waters of the Holy Spirit wash away the color line, the ethnic line, the gender line, the age line, the cultural line, the political line, the economic line, the social line, the language line, the denominational line and the doctrines line. Like a powerful spiritual tsunami, the overflow of God’s life in us, through us and out of us changes the course of our life and all that is in our path. Nothing is ever the same. When God shows up, everything changes.