The first anointing service by advisory pastor Phil Pringle ushers in a refreshing touch from God.
Contributed By Jeremy Chua
City Harvest Church’s advisory pastor, Phil Pringle, is known in CHC for wearing many hats, and wearing them well. Many know him as a talented artist and painter, a consummate and entertaining storyteller, an inspiring preacher and teacher, a powerful prophet, and a good friend to CHC. But during the services over the weekend of Nov. 6 to 7, he revealed another aspect of his ministry: being a conduit of God’s anointing.
EMPOWERED BY THE HOLY SPIRIT
Well aware that the services that weekend was going to be different from what the church was used to from Pringle, the congregation was abuzz with anticipation and expectation right from the first service of the weekend at the Jurong West Street 91 premises. Pringle opened his time at the first service with an exuberant proclamation. “You are excited! God is excited, the Holy Spirit is excited, and Jesus is excited! The only person I know who is not excited today is the devil!” Pringle declared amidst a thunderous clap offering to God, setting the stage for the things to come.
In his second weekend with CHC in his new capacity as advisory pastor, Pringle said, “This service is going to be slightly different.” After sharing a revelatory offering message about how God requires from each giver a specific offering, and nothing else will atone for it, and how the church must learn to chase away the “vultures” that gather around the offerings out of Genesis 15, Pringle wasted no time in getting to the main purpose of his visit to CHC that weekend, to impart a fresh touch of God, the fresh oil of the anointing of the Holy Spirit.
“I have been burdened for these meetings over the past week,” Pringle shared with the Sunday morning crowd. “The fact is, God wants to empower every one of us. I am believing God, that He will touch you, empower you, fill you with the fresh oil of the Holy Spirit!”
Speaking out of Matthew 25, Pringle shared a sobering message about the parable of the 10 virgins. The five foolish virgins failed in their duty to the bridegroom, in honoring him and lighting up his way, and were closed off from his house. “The Bible says that out of the 10 virgins, five were foolish, and five were wise. The five foolish virgins did not prepare enough oil in their lamps in case the bridegroom was delayed, and when he was delayed, they had no oil to light their lamps.”
Pringle declared, “The Christian life is not hard—it is impossible! We cannot do the things that Jesus has asked us to do, unless we have the oil of the Holy Spirit!” He taught that, too often, we tend to substitute information for impartation, and miss out on the wave of God’s revival. Just like how a phone works, things such as contacts and applications in the phone are worthless unless there is power, and it is plugged into a source of power. Similarly, “the things in the kingdom of God need replenishing and recharging,” Pringle declared.
Pringle then exhorted the church, in this time of trial and testing, to face the future with the power of the Holy Spirit. Just as in the Word of God to Zerubbabel spoken through Zechariah, it is not by might or by power, but by the power of the Holy Spirit, Pringle shared, that “we can speak to the mountains in our lives.”
It was time, then, for the church to receive the new oil of the Holy Spirit, to make it through difficulties in life. Drawing a parallel with the 10 virgins’ lamps and the lives of the believers, Pringle said, “We need to have enough oil to go the distance. When the oil dries up, we start burning our wicks, which is relying on our own strength. That is why people get ‘burned out’.”
He then used King David in the Bible as an example, of how with greater responsibility came the need for the constant refilling of the oil of the Holy Spirit. David had three immense steps to take before reaching a different level in his life—going before Saul who wanted to kill him, becoming the king of Judah, then finally becoming the king of Israel. “He had to be equipped and equal to each level of challenge to overcome it, through the anointing of God.”
|CN PHOTOS: Jason Lee and Lee Lin Kai
PREPARING FOR GREATER OPPORTUNITIES
As a reminder to the church, Pringle said, “People tend to not notice, that waiting takes up as much oil as working. The five foolish virgins ran out of oil while they were waiting for the bridegroom, and did not have enough left to do their jobs.” Pointing out how the door was shut to the five foolish virgins, Pringle noted, “The oil of God in our lives keeps us ready for the opportunities that God has for us.”
Finally, he shared why the other five virgins did not share the oil with their peers. “There are some things that you can’t get from someone else; you have to get it from God yourself, by reaching out and seeking God.” On that note, Pringle moved into a powerful time of ministry, which saw words of prophecy being spoken over various people, and the laying of hands on the congregation. People cleared out of their seats, and streamed to the altar area. A mighty move of God swept through the services as wave after wave of people were ministered to.
Toward the end of the service, Pringle emphasized, “This is not just an experience in the front, but this is something to take back with you, to nurture for the journey ahead.” With such an evident working and presence of God, Pringle issued a salvation and re-dedication altar call which saw people streaming to the front of the stage, giving their lives to Jesus, giving a fitting end to an awesome time of being in the presence of God.
“When Pastor Phil prayed for us, I felt a very strong presence of God, reminiscent of an Asia Conference session!” Alexander Liu, 29, a property executive, shared enthusiastically. Josiah Ang, 19, who had just returned from his National Service stint in Australia, said, “I feel that it is a fresh touch from God for me, especially after being away for over a month. We should continue to seek the filling of the Holy Spirit to keep us burning.”
Vera Li Zeng Ying, a 16-year-old student from Chong Boon Secondary School echoed Ang’s sentiments. “This is my first time experiencing an anointing service, but it was more than just a mere experience. I felt that this is a new start in my life. The moment Pastor Phil prayed for me, I felt God release all my fears and struggles. It is His Spirit that makes me believe I can overcome every obstacle!”