Pastor Harold Warner started off our series of sermons for the day. He preached from Zechariah 4:6-14. The theme would be the inspiration of the Holy Spirit as seen in the golden oil flowing from the golden pipes along with the familiar phrase: “not by might but by my Spirit says the Lord”. To be inspired means to inhale (Bill Clinton missed this Holy Ghost inspiration was a sideline joke thrown in). To inhale the inspiration of the Holy Ghost requires us to exhale that which we received in the form of ministry. If you hold your breath too long you will die so we must all strive for ministry. We are made is such a way to be inspired by God. His quote: “I live for and live by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit”. This is a man with 39 years of pastoring.
His leg was recently amputated and he began to describe the process of inspiration he received after having it amputated and he was in ICU. “It was like what does my son need”. So God gave him a little inspiration as he organizes his next Sunday sermon and this conference sermon he is preaching, while he takes another drink from the golden oil elixir (representing an inspiration) he has at the stand with him.
A word here about Pastor Warner is in order. He was the first disciple sent out from our original church in Prescott some 40 years ago. He was returning to Prescott from a trip to scout out the town he was heading for when he lost control of the car and he swerved off the road and ended up in a wheelchair from then until now. The church of 300 that was sending him out was horrified and now the church was divided about whether or not it was the will of God to send out their young couples to preach if this is what would happen to them. Pastor Mitchell refused to believe that God would cripple a young man for wanting to preach. The church split and Pastor Mitchell called for couples to come forward to take the place of the Warner’s. Five couples responded and the next couple was sent to Wickenburg which is the church I got saved in 1983. The Warner’s, wheelchair and all, would soon be following that first couple into Tuscon where they would build the largest church in our fellowship, a church that has probably planted another 100 or more churches of the 2000 churches we have now.
So we are all ears as he describes the necessity of receiving inspiration from the Holy Ghost. “Kingdom leadership relies so heavily on the Holy Spirit.” These inspirations “are sustaining and enabling”. So he heads to the need to tap into the source, the golden pipes of our text, to take in the golden oil as he takes a small sip from his own special golden elixir (you just need a little bit). Seven ways to connect with seven being God’s perfect number but he will add an eighth. 1) the word 2) Holy Spirit with all of the adjectives describing the Holy Spirit 3) perspiration 4) refilling the wells physically, spiritually, mentally and emotionally (whatever works, good night sleep) 5) be around inspired people 6) learn to seize the moment 7) exercise of faith, our text talks of the capstone being placed before the work has begun. He threw in an illustration from a book that examined 413 of the geniuses in different fields and found that 392 of the 413 had to overcome very difficult obstacles and his 8) was gratitude, you need to have gratitude in order to tap into the inspiration that flows from the golden pipes as he takes one last drink of the elixir. The man in the wheelchair, who just lost a leg, speaks of the importance of gratitude.
Great way to start the morning.