God Alive In Portage

By Paul Stanley

I’ve been wrestling lately as I’ve heard from a few people returning from other continents share their experiences of God, and how they’ve observed the people there experience God. After hearing of the total dependence not just for food, shelter and clothing, but life itself, I have heard some say “You’ve never experienced God like they do,” or, “In Canada we haven’t experienced the love and commitment to God that these people have.”

“Wow,” I’ve thought. “What am I doing wrong in my life that doesn’t allow me to experience God like they do?” The question needs to be asked, “Does God expect that of me living in Portage la Prairie, Canada?” I’ve tried being scared for my life, but seriously, I can’t muster it up. I’ve tried before heading to Dicks Café to think “Man, where am I going to get the money to buy lunch?” but the reality is that I have my debit card and $60 in my pocket (and in case my brother reads this I’ll put this in brackets so he can’t see it, I also have my visa card!)

So how do I answer the question “Does God expect from me what the people of China or India, or some Christian hating, economically oppressed nation endures?” Answer – I don’t think so. “So do I have to feel guilty that they’ve seen God work out things in their lives each and every day that I don’t experience?” I don’t think so.

I know that one of the most difficult things we as Christians in this culture have to answer is “How did God show up in my life today?” Does he though? Is the evidence of God working in Portage la Prairie to be seen? Is He still rescuing people? Transforming people? Using his living Word to do surgery in the hearts of people? I’ve seen it. I’ve experienced God so moving in someone’s life that they’ve left their old life, and chosen God’s way. In walking back over the past few months of their lives with them, they’ve been excited to see how God was moving, stirring – some might say conducting the orchestra, so that in the end, the beauty of the song is a life transformed for God.

So next time someone tells you that we don’t experience God and His workings here in Portage like in other places, tell them to open their eyes and tune in their awareness, because I’m seeing it and so are others.

Don’t live guilty lives because you don’t have the same dependency on God, such as food and clothing. Just recognize that He’s already met those dependencies and praise Him.

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