Who does not look for â€˜times of refreshing'? Some respite, a break, a breatherâ€”usually in the form of holidays or leisure activitiesâ€”where we can be free for a while from things that burden us. The apostle Peter said that â€˜times of refreshing' would come â€˜from the presence of the Lord' (Acts 3:20). He said this after the crowd had seen a lame man healed in the name of Jesus â€˜walking and leaping and praising God'â€”a sign now of the age to come. These â€˜times of refreshing' have to do with the burden of our sins being â€˜wiped out' when we repent and turn to Godâ€”how refreshing is that! They are also linked with â€˜the time of universal restoration', when everything that is wrong will be set right, and God says â€˜I make all things new!' This will be when the appointed Messiah Jesus comes again from heaven. God announced this refreshment long ago through His holy prophets. Like when Isaiah said: â€˜Waters shall break forth in the wilderness, and streams in the desert'. Jesus said that â€˜rivers of living water' would flow from us at gut level when the Spirit came. Can we know even now the deep refreshment of our revived spirits that will be ours in the age to come?
Jonathan is the Minister of Port Augusta and Quorn Uniting Churches in country South Australia. He has previously ministered in rural and metropolitan churches. He is married to Kathryn with two adult children.