Up front, I will tell you that this post will either have you shouting “Preach” or crying “Ouch”. No alternative responses will be allowed! Get ready. Some will shout praises and others will throw a hissy fit. What is a hissy fit? A hissy fit is a hissy fit! (It can’t be much simpler than that!) So, read on at your own discretion.
In this present day, we, speaking of born-again, Jesus-loving, Bible-reading, Spirit-filled believers are in a league all of our own when it comes to building spiritual fences. Preach? Ouch? Let me explain.
First, there are denominational fences. What should have been eradicated back in the late 1960s and early 1970s at the beginning of the Charismatic Movement is still going strong among today’s believers. I remember as a child when, seemingly out of nowhere, the likes of Catholics, Presbyterians, and Southern Baptists were gloriously baptized in the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in other tongues. My, oh my! Many of the classical Pentecostals didn’t know what to do. Methodists being filled with the Holy Spirit? Lutherans singing in the Spirit? Nazarenes giving forth messages in tongues? Hissy fit! Hissy fit! Hissy fit! Here is it 2022, and, among many of the classical Pentecostals, the “us four and no more” fences are still being built to keep this walk of the Spirit to ourselves.
Second, there are age fences. Children being baptized in the Holy Spirit? Teenagers prophesying? Parents walking into a classroom and seeing children/youth laying all over the floor because of the power of God being displayed? Miracles, signs, and wonders taking place through our children in public schools? Hissy fit! Hissy fit! Hissy fit! Sadly, church leaders and parents continue to build fences and relegate the walk of the Spirit to just those sitting in the Sunday morning adult services. The isolate-and-entertain mentality fences are perpetuating the loss of another generation.
Third, there are gender fences. Dare I even go there? Heaven forbid that a female would flow with the Holy Spirit in a public gathering. To many, even the movement of the Holy Spirit for ladies in private is a huge stumbling block. Preach? Teach? Prophesy? Flow in all of the gifts of the Spirit? In public? My, oh my. Hissy fit! Hissy fit! Hissy fit! To use an old Pentecostal cliche, right now, there’s no “joy in the camp”. This is going to be bold. What we say and what we practice are two different things. Our gender fences are causing today’s body of Christ to miss out on a God-given, much-needed voice.
To tear down each of these spiritual bondages, let me just share one passage of scripture. It’s one that we preach and teach and yet, as seen in the previous paragraphs, don’t fully practice.
“And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions: And also upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those days will I pour out my spirit.” Joel 2:28-29
Well, did I get a “preach” or an “ouch”? I hate to end the writing. Each of these fences could be its own individual lengthy blog post. But, if you will read one more time God’s prophecy given through His servant Joel, you will readily see God’s opinion about these fences. The fences must be removed. Enough said.