Even so ye, forasmuch as ye are zealous of spiritual gifts, seek that ye may excel to the edifying of the church.
I Corinthians 14:12 (KJV)
(ESV) – …strive to excel in building up the church.
(KSW) – …be desiring them in order that you may abound in them with a view to the building up of the local assembly.
Not only are we commanded to passionately and zealously desire the supernatural operations of the Holy Spirit, we are supposed to “abound” in them and “excel” in their demonstration. Not only is excellence in the release of the Manifestation Gifts to be our goal in the local assembly, it is a mark toward which we should be constantly pressing.
The first thing a pastor should do who desires a greater release of the Manifestation Gifts in his or her local assembly is to become better acquainted with these spiritual operations personally. Pray earnestly and ask the Lord to reveal to you the “great and mighty things which thou knowest not” regarding these spiritual realities (Jer. 33:3). Study what the Bible teaches about these supernatural demonstrations and how they functioned through the lives and ministries of Biblical characters. Then do some personal research yourself. Attend meetings conducted by seasoned men and women of God who have a proven track record in the things of the Spirit. Observe the various ways the Holy Spirit manifests in ministry to people. Ask the Lord to connect you with a mature “spiritual mentor” who can help you come into a greater flow and release of the supernatural in your own ministry. Avail yourself of the opportunity to learn, increase, grow and develop in every way you possibly can. How badly do you want this?
Next, it is imperative that you teach your congregation about the supernatural demonstrations of the Holy Spirit from the Bible. Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God (Rom. 10:17). For the faith of your people to grow and develop relative to the operations of the Spirit, they must be taught accurately concerning them from the Bible. You might even need to demonstrate Biblically that God’s intent was that ALL of the supernatural manifestations of the Holy Spirit continue in the Church until the return of the Lord (I Cor. 1:7). It was never God’s Plan that ANY of these miraculous demonstrations “pass away.”
There are many good resources available to help you learn and teach more effectively regarding the Manifestation Gifts of the Holy Spirit. Much of what Pentecostals have taught regarding the Gifts is rooted historically in illumination from the Bible that was received by Howard Carter (the British Pentecostal pioneer, NOT the famous British archaeologist of the same name) in the early years of the Twentieth Century. Others have written much on the topic as well. Identify the various Manifestation Gifts and teach your people how they function. As you teach, include both Biblical examples of supernatural operations, and personal examples that you have witnessed yourself. If you have not yet seen very much in demonstration, then be honest and tell your congregation that while we may not have yet seen much release of these supernatural demonstrations, we are trusting God that we will see them, and in great abundance!
Then, realize that it is important not only that your people be Biblically taught regarding the Manifestation Gifts of the Holy Spirit, they must also witness these operations brought forth with spiritual excellence. Model the Gifts in Biblical order before your people. Bring in guest ministers who have proven seasoned ministries in the supernatural. Encourage your people to not only receive, but to watch and learn. Some things can be “taught,” but other things must be “caught.” You cannot expect your people to move in the Spirit if you do not move very often in the Spirit.
God’s Purpose is that every local congregation abound in the supernatural demonstrations of the Holy Spirit, and that they do so with excellence and in Biblical order. Be Blessed!