WEDNESDAY’S WORD – ENCOUNTER – Sadell Bradley – 03/15/17 – New Life Covenant Cincinnati

Sadell Bradley

Sadell Bradley

“Religious life is an encounter with the living God. Sometimes that encounter is preceded by a kind of soul-searching agony that tries desperately not to hear, runs in the opposite direction, and frantically tries to reason itself out of answering the invitation.” – Mother Angelica

In Churches leaders say, “We are believing for an ENCOUNTER with God” as

we are for our upcoming In His Presence Night of Worship, this Friday at 7PM.  Upon hearing the word encounter, some might recall the Stephen Spielberg movie, Close Encounters of the Third Kind. In the story, a guy named Roy Neary’s life changes after an encounter with a UFO (unidentified flying object). Remember the 5 note song of the aliens? The pilots that were abducted by them did not age. To ENCOUNTER means to unexpectedly experience or be faced with someone who is an adversary; to come upon face to face; to meet, especially by chance. Those definitions don’t seem like what happens with our loving God…or do they?

No truer

words have been spoken than those to your left. Jacob had a life history of manipulation, lies and con-artistry. In Genesis 32 he’s on the run after cheating his uncle Laban over his daughters and inheritance, and deceiving then bribing his brother Esau after stealing his birthright. Alone and afraid in the wilderness, Jacob has an encounter with an Angel, and wrestles with Him throughout the night. He gets a blessing, but also a limp for life. Upon reflection Jacob says, “I saw God face to face, and yet my life was spared.” (vs. 30) His name is changed to Israel, which means, ‘one who struggles with God and wins.’ An encounter.   

Normally when preachers talk about encounters with God, they mean they want people to experience His manifest presence:
where signs, wonders and miracles are prevalent. We sing powerful music. We bow in intercession. We want the blind to see, the lame to walk, the dumb to talk, the prophetic to be released and most importantly for people to turn from their sins to Jesus. Aren’t these face to face meetings where our Lord reclaims and releases the lives of those the devil has held hostage? I certainly hope so!

Saul’s encounter on the Damascus road in Acts 9 included a ‘chance meeting’ with the One he believed was his adversary, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?…I am Jesus whom you are persecuting.” (vs. 4-5) Saul, in his religious zeal, was at enmity with Jesus and

His followers. The dramatic encounter physically blinded Saul in order to restore his spiritual sight. This violent confrontation with God also prophetically released one of the Church’s greatest leaders to one of the most powerful missions in history: the uniting of the New Testament Church – Jews and Gentiles alike, into One New Humanity through Christ. The Apostle Paul’s name and life changed that day. .

As a pastor, I want people to have encounters with God that radically alter the trajectory of their lives. If Satan has crippled them internally or externally, I want them to be healed. If he’s lied to them, I want them to be freed by Truth. If he’s stolen from them, I want them restored. If they’ve been blinded to their call, I want them to receive direction. Their lives and others’ lives are at stake. That’s why encounters with God matter so much.

  LAST WEEK of our Annual 30 for $30 Giving Campaign for Missions Projects for 2017.  If you’d like to give $30 or more CLICK HERE

SUNDAY Worship

11:00 AM Worship
The Great Room
Sunday Class
9:30 AM Youth Room Basement
at Wyoming Presbyterian
225 Wyoming Ave., 45215

For information 513-212-1131

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Sadell Bradley, Pastor of The Warehouse Church OTR, is a dynamic teacher and worship leader, with over 30 years in ministry in various contexts including: as a conference speaker and trainer, music, worship and arts pastor, providing background vocals for various artists; as a campus missionary, and as a ministry development director.
Sadell’s main desire is to see people saved, healed, delivered and set free by the ministry of Jesus, the Word of God, and presence of the Holy Spirit. (Luke 4:18)

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