By MYRA COLGATE
CHEROKEE PENTECOSTAL HOLINESS CHURCH
“Don’t tear your clothing in your grief but tear your hearts instead. Return to the Lord your God, for he is merciful and compassionate, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love. He is eager to relent and not punish. Who knows? Perhaps he will give you a reprieve, sending you a blessing instead of this curse. Perhaps you will be able to offer grain and wine to the Lord your God as before. Blow the ram’s horn in Jerusalem! Announce a time of fasting; call the people together for a solemn meeting. Gather all the people—the elders, the children, and even the babies. Call the bridegroom from his quarters and the bride from her private room. Let the priests, who minister in the Lord’s presence, stand and weep between the entry room to the Temple and the altar. Let them pray, Spare your people, LORD! Don’t let your special possession become an object of mockery. Don’t let them become a joke for unbelieving foreigners who say, ‘Has the God of Israel left them?’ Then the LORD will pity his people and jealously guard the honor of his land.”
Joel 2:13-18 (NLT)
(“God told the people to turn to him while there was still time. Destruction would soon be upon them. Time is also running out for us. Because we don’t know when our life will end, we should trust and obey God now while we can. Don’t let anything hinder you from turning to him… But God didn’t want an outward display of penitence without true inward repentance. (1 Samuel 16:7; Matthew 23:1-36.) Be sure your attitude toward God is correct, not just your outward actions. Where there is repentance, there is hope… This promise of forgiveness should have encouraged the people to repent. From NLT Study Bible.)
“We also need to call a solemn assembly—seeking God all night, without anything, and not leaving until we see God. Gather and sanctify the priests. Search for anything that hinders obedience to what God has required of us—the saints, priests and kings. Assemble all together. God comes and then we go out and obey. People are asking ‘Where is their God?’ We will not participate if our head isn’t right. ‘I strive to do what is right.’
“Then, as in verse 18, our jealous God, jealously loves the Cherokee people. Miracles are to set us up. The churches don’t. People lament the loss of miracles—all the car wrecks—so many funerals. The ‘northern army’, the drugs, demons, send them all to a land—a desolate land. They stink.
“(In this chapter) ‘prosperity comes, following the four stages of how a locust eats, each eats differing parts of the plants and can restore all in a minute. It is available right now. The Glory falls—when we do the things God tells us to do. Eat and be satisfied. I want more!’
“Crawl up into His lap again. Be not ashamed. This is how you get there. It’s available now! Like when you want a Krispy Kreme doughnut so badly nothing else would satisfy. Give me Your very best! Desire to see the Glory of God. More than the money.
“Ask the Holy Ghost, ‘Give me the desire to rely on God again. Turn me up.’ We have gotten satisfied before we have really been satisfied. It is not okay to have just three songs and a sermon. We would be eating bugs when there is Glory to be had. God give me Your very best. Enough is not enough! Remember the Shekinah Glory! Trying is so much better. Moses said, ‘Show me Your Glory!’ Like real archaeologists—keep digging! Think how amazing if all are saved! He is enough. Not there yet. This takes a hunger and a thirst—more than food. God will show up and become… Walk on water—Peter did. Real prophecy is what God is about to do.
“Children prophesy. They come up from behind—three-year-olds—walking in the Holy Ghost and adults fall out! Men know how to be men and touch God. Men are dreaming dreams and have visions. Prophets seeking Him, the wonders in the heavens and on earth, blood, fire and pillars of smoke. God will set all of them in the Church—free—delivered and set free. Only a remnant whom the Lord has set free will be there. All are invited to be there…
The Faith Commentary is currently provided by Cherokee Pentecostal Holiness Church, P.O. Box 363, Cherokee, N.C. 28719 (Reverend Timothy L. Melton, Pastor of the church). All organized houses of worship are welcome to submit commentary for this column.