onsdag 22. juni 2016

Ready for new appointment?

I find it strange that Philip was 'disturbed' in the middle of the revival in Samaria. Once again it is an angel who is the messenger – confirming the fact that the angels became our fellow servants when the Spirit was poured out on all men. To me it seems as the Holy Spirit chooses to use angles when the person concerned needs to 'adjust dramatically', like in this incident: Philip was appointed to go to Gaza:
Now an angel of the Lord spoke to Philip, saying, “Arise and go toward the south along the road which goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza.” This is desert.
Acts 8:26
Several of my officer-colleagues in Norway are on the move this week. They are going to take up new appointments on the 1st of August, but most will move before the Congress, which is upcoming weekend. I have lived with The Salvation Army’s “appointment-system” since I was four years old. My first appointment was that I together with my little sister had to live with my grandparents for a year while my parents went to the battle-school to become officers.

Sometimes a new appointment has meant to leave a very vivid place, saturated with spiritual life, to go to a place that seemed unpredictable and more or less like a desert. Like going from Samaria to Gaza (1). But, also on the occasions when I reluctantly have entered into a change, there has always been an Ethiopian eunuch who needed someone to open the Scriptures.

The key is to let the Holy Spirit lead. If that is my intention, it can even bring meaning into an organization’s more or less random moves of personnel. On second thought, it was possibly an angel in the picture as well. I have always had ambivalent feelings with regard to the appointment-system. I remember when in the Officers’ Training College that I was very provoked when I heard an officer say: “Men cannot send me where God cannot use me!” More than forty years later, I must confess that I agree. Because in the end the only thing that matters, is the relationship between the Holy Spirit and me, and only I sit with the key to that relationship.

‘Manna’ for today:

Always prepared for Gaza?
(1) This reflection in Norwegian eloborates further on this dramatic transition: 'Langt igjæn te Royal Albert Hall'

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