The Spiritual Power Surge of Revelation 5

I love Pixar animated features – all of them. My favorite one, however, is Monsters, Inc. I love the way that movie tells the story of how the city of Monstropolis dramatically shifted from being powered by fear through the capture of children’s blood curdling screams to being powered by joy through the capture of children’s raucous laughter. It serves as a kind of parable of how we consistently misunderstand power and as a result forfeit real power for a cheap, easy, but ultimately poor, if not downright dangerous, substitute.
At one point in the movie, the little human girl who has been kidnapped by one of the monster citizens of Monstropolis and an employee of the city’s power company, Monsters Inc., is tickled by her monster rescuer, Sullivan. She squeals with delight and laughs. Suddenly a buzzing sound fills the air, the lights temporarily brighten, then blink, then everything returns to normal after the girl’s laughter subsides. Sullivan looks at his monster buddy, Mike Wazowski, and exclaims “Wow! What was that?” That was a power surge. The little girls joy overpowered the inadequate power lines of a system that up until that moment had only known the power of fear. The system couldn’t quite handle this new, greater power source and it overwhelmed the city’s circuitry.          
Last Sunday our sermon explored the renewed vision of power John received when he entered God’s throne room and encountered the lion-lamb Messiah who conquered the world and overwhelmed worldly power by means of a new kind of power – the power of self-sacrifice, the power of radically other-centered service. Heaven and earth experienced an unmistakable power surge when the lamb standing as though slain took center stage in the vision and proceeded to open the sealed scroll, thus revealing the divine strategy by which the church will overcome sin, suffering, and even death itself.   
Church, we need the same kind of power surge John experienced in his vision. The power of humble service, of mutual submission, and of placing other’s needs and concerns ahead of our own is a radically different kind of energy, but is far more powerful and effective than the strong-arming, manipulation, intimidation, and bullying that too often characterizes not only the kind of leadership modeled in the world but also, unfortunately, the kind modeled in the church.          
Here’s a suggestion for an activity this week that could well result in a spiritual power surge in your personal life and possibly even in our church. Plan and perform one selfless act this week that will inconvenience you but be a blessing to others. Do it anonymously without any fanfare. Let it remain between you and God so that God can bless it, multiply it, and surge its power. Let’s each commit to performing this activity this week and see what happens. We just might experience a spiritual power surge!
Your brother in Christ and fellow disciple,