Scripture of the Day
“The circumcised believers who had come with Peter were astonished that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on Gentiles. For they heard them speaking in tongues and praising God. Then Peter said, ‘Surely no one can stand in the way of their being baptized with water. They have received the Holy Spirit just as we have.’ So he ordered that they be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ.”
When I read this passage, I was surprised because I assumed it was necessary for water baptism to happen before a baptism of fire (spirt) could occur. Since this idea is directly opposed in scripture, I now question all ideas I have of the order of operations for both receiving rights which increase our capacity to experience God’ presence, and the educational process God begins at the point of introducing himself.
While I believed that God deals with sin, individually, I struggled with acts, which I categorized as “external.” I felt a disconnect between the physical actions and spiritual actions, but I have little evidence for a divide as wide as I imagined.
The way this changes my mind is to increase my openness, in general. Now, I feel my mental grip on any and all “necessities” removed from my mind and what I see is only a foundation. The foundation I see is made of a substance called God’s will, and I understand that through the lens of “what God says is possible and/or real, is possible and/or real.” And stripped down to a foundation, I become required to trust God. But also, I get to listen. I sense an openness about this state of mind that has a promise to satisfy even while it’s absence of “understanding” creates a void of knowledge because now I am open to asking questions of the being who knows the true answers. And God always answers my questions. And listening to God is like eating food that fills the soul with vitality.
If I’m not focusing on figuring out the rituals for sanctification, purification, righteousness and entering into salvation, then I am exposed to possible failure. And yet, salvation is a necessary aligning with the will of God. Without an order to the timing of things, either received or learned, I must rely fully on my communication with God Almighty.
Strange how He says I am saved no matter what else I learn, no matter what else I change about myself, no matter what else I do in life. And I am saved as though I am perfect, immediately, before any such changes occur. The thing that changed was my relationship to God; now, I’m in his hand, so that I can be ever and always comforted. And my worst day will always be endured with comfort because he will never let me go. There is better than my state of mind, today. But there will never be a moment, for all eternity, when I am alone. My imperfects make me struggle with belief, but I can remind myself of what he has said to me in visions, which later were highlighted to me in scripture from the Bible. I am in awe.