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I am writing this on the anniversary of that momentous day when John Wesley felt his heart “strangely warmed” and the history of our nation was changed. And it is worth noting the missionary impact on the world was immense: when John Wesley died some 60 years later the message he shared through the Methodist evangelists had already reached China, Africa, America and India. It is the most significant missionary endeavour ever in the time used, with some 132,000 people calling themselves Methodists by his death.

Why? Because the Wesleys were anointed for that task.

It’s one of those words which is overused to almost meaning nothing. But it is a powerful New Testament truth.

As we abide in the Vine (Jesus) his life continually flows through us. As 1 John 2:27 says,”the anointing which you have received from him abides in you....” Also look at 1 John 4:13: “By this we know that we abide in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit.” That word ‘of’ (in Greek apo) means ‘out of’ as in the older rendering of Acts 2:17, “I will pour OUT OF my Spirit”. You see, there is always more to come, out and out and out and never running dry or being used up. The anointing the Spirit gives us is both a gift and an endless process. For that reason I am convinced David’s prayer “Take not your Holy Spirit from me” is not anything we can ever pray. Rather, we are to go “our own great weakness feeling” and rely on him who gives us enough Spirit to swim in - as Ezekiel

saw in his vision. Though he always points away from himself to Christ, it is not in the Spirit’s nature to lie low. No! He is wind blowing, fire burning and river flowing!

Of course there are times when we don’t feel anointed - but the anointing is not a feeling. There are reasons for this unawareness: it is human nature to experience peaks and troughs; perhaps we expect to be unanointed through being tired or ill; the devil may come to rob us of blessing; our hearers may not be expecting much either.

But you just wait and see...when you act on the call God has given you, the anointing is there.

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