In every fresh move of the Holy Spirit there are those God uses in great ways to ignite others with the fire of the Holy Spirit. They are motivated by the vision of His sweeping power.
In Acts, chapter 10, we find one of the most significant events of the early Church. It opened an entire new dimension of God's redemption.
"There was a certain man in Caesarea called Cornelius, a centurion of what was called the Italian Regiment, a devout man and one who feared God with all his household, who gave alms generously to the people, and prayed to God always. About the ninth hour of the day he saw clearly in a vision an angel of God coming in and saying to him, 'Cornelius!' And when he observed him, he was afraid, and said, 'What is it, lord?' So he said to him, 'Your prayers and your alms have come up for a memorial before God.'" (Acts 10:1-4 NKJV).
Cornelius was a Gentile, a man without a covenant with God, who had a deep hunger for the Lord. This hunger was expressed two ways in his life: he gave alms and he prayed.
There is a deep spiritual connection between giving, praying, and a fresh moving of the Holy Spirit. God looks for those who pray and give. The significance of these two areas is that one reaches into the spiritual realm and the other into the material realm.
Through prayer, the channels of the Spirit are opened to release God's anointing. Through our willingness and obedience to give finances, we link spiritual power with material supply. Our acts of faith to pray and give serve as a constant reminder, or memorial, that will activate the riches of God.
Cornelius' prayers and giving became the vehicle God used to open redemption to the Gentiles. Until that time the Gospel had not been spread to the Gentile population. The apostles had believed redemption was only available to Israel.
Through his giving and praying, Cornelius paved the way for the Apostle Peter to come into a deeper revelation of God's redemption. As a result of this memorial Cornelius built, God gave Peter a vision revealing that redemption was no longer isolated from the Gentiles. Peter, by direction of the Holy Spirit, journeyed to Caesarea and found Cornelius. And for the first time the power of the Holy Spirit fell on a Gentile household.
This memorial Cornelius built not only brought salvation to the Gentiles, but it brought the revelation that God was no respecter of persons. The message of redemption was for all mankind.
If we continue to pray and give to God, He will lift us to new personal dimensions. If necessary, He will even speak to another person to bring it to us.
Your willingness to pray and give financially will cause God to pass over all the hardhearted, self-serving people to move in your life. You can build a memorial before God by giving a financial offering today. He will honor your giving and make it the vehicle that activates His riches in your life.
- Excerpt from the
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