I've been here before. Standing in a high pitched tent with the people of God.
As the music starts, I sense Him near. Feeling His indescribably sweet presence. Heavy like the arbor of tree branches. Warm like the hearth of a fire. We bask in the anticipation that something epic is about to happen. Standing on the cusp of a new spiritual work.
38 years ago it was a grey big top. The shelter and temporary church where the 'Jesus People' transitioned from the Little Chapel to the new 4000 seat Calvary Chapel sanctuary. We were caught in the tidal wave of God's move then. Swept away by a force we had no control of. Grateful and honored to have been included. Some of us sang, played instruments, preached, hosted radio shows, lead Bible studies, street witnessed in Hollywood and Huntington, or just picked up cigarette butts around the church grounds.
All the while we fed on the Word. We worshiped arm in arm with brothers and sisters, overwhelmed with joy and blessing.
(My parents outside the tent Easter 1972 or '73, Costa Mesa, California)
Today it was a white open sided 5-peaked tent. We took our weekly church staff meeting offsite to celebrate the newly acquired 132 acres in Martin county. It was an unusually cold late April morning; in the lower 50's as we gathered for breakfast, worship and prayer to dedicate the place. Asking God to do mighty things with the land.
There's something powerful that occurs when God's people purpose to build a house for his Name. (I Kings 5:5). Solomon did it and the crowd could not stay standing at the dedication ceremony because of His glory in that place.
When Moses went to the 'tent of Meeting' to meet God the cloud of His presence was visible to all of Israel as they watched from their own tents. The invitation for his Face to shine upon them was for each and every one, not just Moses (Numbers 6:25). God wanted to meet them all in their earthly abode.....and so we did today.
And here's an amazing side thought: This earthly tent, our physical being, is meant to be His dwelling place. Our bodies, the temple of God!!! And together, we are living stones built up to be his Church!
God has shown up in tents and tabernacles all through HisStory. I witnessed a great work in the 70's with the Jesus Movement.
And I'm gonna stand back and watch it all happen again...