Leon Fontaine - A Powerful Example
Holy Spirit. The Bible says it's one God, in three persons. But so few people seem to understand that Holy Spirit is here. And that, Jesus died on the cross so that you could become this purified, forgiven, new life vessel that He could fill with His spirit. God didn't want you powerless, so He literally, Jesus said it is important for you that I leave, to His disciples. Because as I go, Holy Spirit's going to come. And He's going to teach you things that I couldn't because you weren't able to bear them. So you and I, need to be very aware that God did not want His people to be powerless. He said in Acts 1:8, that you wait until you are endued with power.
And by the way, the disciples were born-again. They believed that Jesus was Lord, and when He rose from the dead it says in John, He breathed on them and said receive Holy Spirit. So they were born-again believers, the Holy Spirit was on the inside of them. They were a purified vessel. But they still needed to be filled with power. They needed the power of Holy Spirit in the Old Testament and in the New. Holy Spirit is that one of that, you know, there's one God in three persons, He is that person who brings the power, the manifestation of miracles and exciting things, and we need to understand that. You can't be ignorant or you're going to go through life, just being a Christian. What's that? Well, if I die I'm going to go to heaven. But you know, we're just a secret service until then.
If you are really a follower of Jesus Christ, when the power of Holy Spirit gets in your life, you should look different, sound different, act different. And it should be natural, it shouldn't be put on, it shouldn't be arrogant. When I was a teenager, I got filled with the spirit. In a service, and began to pray in the spirit and other tongues. And it was an amazing experience because, and then when I realized later on as I began to get involved in track and sports and basketball and football, and we would travel across Canada and around the world. And compete. It was partying, oh man, I mean sex, drugs, rock and roll, getting drunk, you name it. And it was stunning to me when I look back, that I could literally, in, just walk my life out without going in and being tempted into it. And it's not because I'm good. It's not because I'm strong. It's because I have been filled with the spirit.
And when I look back now I realize that every time, incredible temptation or situations arose where there were hotel rooms or parties or celebrations afterwards. When a teenage boy would go what in the world, I had all the same hormones every other boy had. What kept me? Only Holy Spirit. And I want you to know today, that God never designed you to live without the power of Holy Spirit. And that word power in Acts 1:8, it means moral power, financial power, power to lead, power to rise up and do whatever God has called you to do. In Psalms 48:13, it says consider well her ramparts. Go through her palaces and citadels. It's talking about the new Jerusalem. That you may tell the next generation, and cease recalling your disappointments.
As parents, you better be experiencing and demonstrating God's power in your life. Or what are your kids going to believe? Well, I took them to church. Big deal. Sticking them in a garage doesn't make them a car. Teach them to bark doesn't make them a dog. Taking them to church does nothing if parents don't have a demonstration of Holy Spirit in their lives. And they see the power of God in you, in your relationships, and every area the Bible talks about in Psalms 78:4. We will not hide them from their children. But we will tell to the generation to come, the praiseworthy deeds of the Lord. And His might, and the wonderful works that He has performed.
As a young boy, and as a teenager, I had seen my mom and dad pray and minister to people. I've seen them lay hands on people and watch the healing power of God. I watched them when they worshipped God. Like in what we were just doing. And it, they were not singing. They were worshipping. I could see them get a hold of God. I could see them at time with great joy on their faces, and other times with tears coming down their eyes. There was something to watch when they worshipped God, and when they got into God. I'd see my dad pray when I wake up in the morning. He'd be on that couch, and he'd be praying. And mom I'd see her just sitting on that couch with a Bible on her lap and her note pad, and just into God's Word. And I sensed something real about them. You know, I knew there was a God, because I watched the demonstration of my parents lives.
And I want to say something to you. We need to be filled with the spirit of God. With the strength of joy. And the strength of His peace. And the strength of righteousness. The kingdom of God is not meat and drink or physical things. But it is righteousness, peace, and joy. Well we kind of know what righteousness, or what peace and joy feels like. But righteousness, is a feeling of belonging. It's a feeling of everything is right. You know, when your spouse looks at you, or guys say when your wife looks at you and everything is right between you today? She's not, you know, correcting you. Telling you what to do better. Things are just right. She's looking at you saying, you the man. I mean, she's looking at you and her eyes are, oh man I am blessed. Things are right.
Righteousness is to be right with God. And Holy Spirit, when you begin to grow in the Word and fellowship with Holy Spirit, you sense this right-ness between you and God that you can't earn. That you can't live good enough, to be perfect enough. You're just holy because you are set apart because of what Jesus did, and what you believe. All through the Word, in the early church, you will find that they were filled with the spirit. You see, people say well Leon, I'm born again. Good for you. But Jesus talks about a well of salvation. With beautiful, clear drinking water. A refreshing to be born again. But then He talks about in John 7, that was in John 4. He talks about out of your belly shall flow rivers of living water. Well they can't stop one river from flooding its banks and taking out a city. And out of you flows rivers of living water. The very power of God. He's talking about a demonstration of power that's needed in our marriages, raising our kids, our homes, our careers, our lives.
There's a big difference between singing and worshipping. Big difference between just walking long, you know, know Jesus, and walking along empowered by Holy Spirit with your gifts, your abilities, et cetera. In Ephesians 5:14 it says, awake the sleeper. Raise him from the dead, and Christ shall shine and make day dawn upon you and give you light. Look carefully, then how you walk. Live purposefully. Worthily. Accurately. Not as the unwise and the witless, but as wise, sensible, intelligent people making the very most of the time. Buying up each opportunity. The days are evil. Therefore do not be vague and thoughtless and foolish, but understanding and firmly grasping what the will of the Lord is. And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery.
Now listen to this. But ever be filled and stimulated with Holy Spirit. You are not designed to be empty. You were designed as a purified vessel of God to stay full. This word, and ever be filled, it's hard to translate from the Greek. It means ongoing, never stopping, filled. It means, be being filled, or be being, being, being, being, being, being, being filled. Make sure that your relationship with Holy Spirit, and the Word, and it's passionate moving towards God is there. Otherwise you're going to find yourself weak. You're going to find yourself out. It's going to be like the ten versions, five full of oil, five no oil. There, you can live your life as a purified vessel, going to heaven, when you are, when you die. But not knowing this filled life that is full every day of Holy Spirit.
Isn't it interesting that, He encourages you not to do anything that gets you high, drunk, or in any way out of control emotionally? Man, you can get out of control sexually, you, drugs and alcohol will help you, or just loneliness and not staying close to Holy Spirit. It can make you, just do things you shouldn't be doing. But here it's saying, that be ever filled. Be being filled, every day talk to Holy Spirit. Let Him take you into God's Word, and teach you. And when you do, something begins to happen to you. Where you begin to sense and know righteousness. You and God, feels right.
As a teenager, one of the things that kept me from some of the craziness that my friends in the church got involved in, was I felt good about myself with God. I wasn't trying to prove my manhood, I wasn't trying to prove I'm tougher than you. I didn't feel insecure, as though I had something to prove. There was just a righteousness. So, there was peace in my life, there was joy, but I was a typical teenager. But there was things that they would go get involved in, I'd say no thanks. There was times I literally had to leave the celebration after as they all were hitting the party, I'd have to grab cabs. There was times I didn't have money, I walked back to my hotel. You know, and feeling sorry for myself at times you're like okay shut up, Leon. This is not you. You're called, you're separated.
Did you know that to be holy, it's got a lot of different things. But one of the things to remember, it doesn't mean that you of earning holiness through your purity. It means that you are holy, you are set apart. You are uniquely called. When you give your life to Jesus Christ and you are born again, you are, and you don't have to resist temptation on your power. Even Jesus had the Holy Spirit upon Him to resist, and to do what God had called Him to do, as a human body. And so you and I need to understand that. Holy Spirit, it's crucial. In Ephesians 6:10, it says be strong in the Lord, but then it talks about another kind of strength. Why do you have to do it twice? Be strong in the Lord, and then be strong in the power of His might. What?
Well, whenever you see the word 'might' and 'power', it's going to be referring to Holy Spirit. But to be strong in the Lord, is showing us to be strong in the Word. If you're not strong in the Word, you will make huge mistakes. Holy Spirit will always point you to Jesus through the Word. He'll teach you the Word, and build up every area of your life. He'll teach you these things, and as you grow, you know, there's things I would read in the Bible when I was younger and I didn't understand what in the world does He mean? And now I get them. I'm going oh my. It's because every season of your life, if you are fellowshipping with Holy Spirit, and He teaches you the Word, you're growing. And you can't build the fifth floor of a high-rise until you build the fourth floor.
You know, if you're going to, if you have the general contractor and I'm going to, I need a ten-storey apartment block built, you know what? We're going to start with floor five. You're going to start with floor five? Well I'd like to see that. No, you start with the foundation and then the first floor. And then as that's there and solid, you can build a successful second, and the same is true with revelation and the relationship with Holy Spirit. Is that you should be 100 years old.
My dad's pastor's last name was Rozenki. He came up when I was a teenager to help my dad. I'd been about 18, and help my dad build the church in Selkirk. And I remember he parked his trailer, in the parking lot of where they were building the church. And I'd go over in the mornings and knock on the trailer and he'd make me coffee. And I'd always find him reading the Bible. Great big King James, you know? And he'd be reading and Leon, look what I'm seeing, look at this this morning! And he would just be alive with new revelation. And I'd go, oh. I didn't get what he was talking about. But to him it was quite the revelation because there were things as he grew in his life and experience to operate in the Word and Holy Spirit, that he could just see. And I could kind of grasp it a little bit, but no where near with the depth of him walking, he was fascinated with the Bible and I saw it in my mom and in my dad.
And I recognized that Holy Spirit will always take you into God's Word. He'll always teach you and show you the Word. And he'll show you who you are, who Jesus is. It will always glorify Jesus. And I want to encourage you today, Holy Spirit. Yes, He's within you. And yes, He's around. But you need to be being, being, being, being, being, being, being filled. You need to treasure His relationship. You need to get into God's Word and enjoy it, and let your life grow. And just expect to demonstrate, the power of God. You know, these two verses it talks about the next generation. It says we've got to teach the next generation the power, the miracles, the flow of God. Well what if there's no power or flow or miraculous in the previous generation? What are you going to show them?
Well, you know, we talk about doctrine. Big deal, everybody talks about doctrine. The apostle Paul says when I was with you, I wasn't with you with enticing words of men's revelation. I was with you in the demonstration of the power of God. That will wake you up. I've been in services where good Lord, I could hardly keep my eyes open. And I've been in services where the presence of God will be upon somebody, and every word I was hanging on to. And then he'd say well I've got to stop right there, and you go you just started! Or I've been in services where the presence of God was moving, and all of a sudden the Holy Spirit would heal someone. Or the person who was in ministry would say, this about someone here. And that person would realize only God could have shown them that. And we'd saw the demonstration. In my family, growing up, I watched the things going on as mom and dad prayed about stuff. And would involve us in prayer.
Want to hear a funny story? I have four brothers, but my brother, Guy, he came along a few years later. And we call him the oopsie, mom disagrees but. But there was four of us, when my dad was pastoring in Welden, we would take turns doing dishes. Two of us did dishes one day, and two of us did dishes the next day. And my mom was a firm believer in discipline and training her boys to not just clean up their mess, but lots more. And, so one day we were, I forget whose turn it was to do dishes and one of my brothers said, you know what? How come we can't have a dishwasher? Mom says, I didn't say you couldn't have a dishwasher. Are you going to buy one for us? No. Well, how are we going to get a dishwasher? Pray and believe God for one. What? So four little boys, got anointed on this prayer. And we literally agreed together with mom and believed for a dishwasher in our house.
Now, I don't remember how, a week or two later, somewhere around there. We get a knock on the door, and there is a lady from our church with a, in a box, dishwasher, out behind her on the lawn. And she said in her prayer time, God had told her to bring a dishwasher. Things like that would just happen in our world. And mom and dad would just teach us to pray and to believe God. And we need an understanding to be filled with the spirit. The fruit of knowing Holy Spirit, learning to pray and believe Him, because if we don't, how are we going to reach the next generation? How will we let them know that God will be with them and keep them and heal them and touch them and raise them up in careers and protect them through storms and heal you when you have losses? The power of Holy Spirit, I want to challenge you today. He knows what you're going through. He knows what's going on in your life, right now. And even in a service like this, there's an awareness that will touch you.
I could tell you of different services in my life, where I heard a message. You know, when you whistle, you ever watch a dog when they kind of go, they look like this, and then you'll whistle they kind of go, their head just tilts a little like this and they look at you? That's how I felt in many services. Where somebody would teach something and the presence of God would impact me, and I knew I was changed forever. I'd accepted this seed of God's Word in my heart, and I walked out of that service knowing I would never be the same in that area again. I am going to do that, I am going to live that, I believe that. And I want to challenge you.
So many people, they know God's Word. Yeah Leon, good message. Praise the Lord, hallelujah, good, great reminder, thank you Leon. But they've never known the Word of God as a hammer. They've never known the Word of God as a sword. They've never known God's Word as a fire. It's just, oh, that's good. Yeah, thank you. Very good, praise the Lord, God bless you. You kind of look at them and you go, you don't get it. There is more to the Word of God than just some cute poetic songs when you're having a hard time. Or, use the name of Jesus and yep, everything's good. No, there's a relationship with Holy Spirit and as He takes you into the Word, that will just change you.
You, see, Holy Spirit is not going to force you or make you. There has to be a daily, yielding to Him of your self. The Bible says die to self. It says, Bible teaches us more of Him, less of me. It says pick up your cross daily and follow me. It doesn't mean die and just become this nothing, no. It means die to the selfish, self-centered side of you. The Bible says in Galatians 2:20, I am crucified with Christ. Nevertheless, I live. Yet not I, but it is Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live, I live by faith in the Son of God, who gave Himself for me. Who loved me. If we don't start showing what the Christian life is like, staying filled with the spirit and demonstrating the miraculous, how are we going to convince the next generation? No wonder churches are empty and they're selling their buildings. Why? Because the next generation has not seen a demonstration of the power of God.
The commitment of parents to rise up and pray and believe God and get involved in church. He never called you to attend church, He called you to build His church. In interviewed a seventh-generation Chinese pastor who flew out of China to be with me. He began to tell a story, seven generations his parents and grandparents had pastored. And he told the story of times when the hunger for God's Word was so great, they only had one page out of a Bible. And they would pass it around between the underground services and bushes and caves. And try to transfer it around. And the hunger for God's Word and to know Him. And, our next generation and your kids and your grandkids, they're not going to know God unless there's a hunger to know Him. Unless they see you praying, studying the Word, passionately following Jesus Christ. Believing Him to make the difference. Never backing down.
If we do not do this, listen to me. I'm warning you, we're going to have a country with generations who don't know God and governments who do whatever they want, because you can pray all you want, but if we don't win a democratic country to Jesus, they all vote. Our only hope to change a nation, is that ground swell of winning the lost, one at a time, two at a time, a family at a time. Every one of us being an example of what Jesus is doing in our lives, and sharing our faith, and being a witness everywhere we go. We need the power of Holy Spirit. Don't try to do without it. And if you've found your life just, well, I'm reading some good books on parenting. Please do, and keep going. But you ought to try praying with them. And letting them sense the power of God.
I don't know how to explain it to people but, you know, for you truck drivers that are here or if you've ever stood beside a semi that's idling on the curb. Those great big whatever in that motor, and it's just wooh. You're standing on the side you can feel the rumble in your bones of that big engine, that thing just idling there. I can't explain it, but when I got around my dad, and my mom, and there were times they were seeking for God about something. I would look at them, and the presence of God that was upon them would make me in awe. And I want you to know that same Holy Spirit is upon every one of us. He'll give you a courage and a strength, He'll make you rise up and they'll go what in the world it's like Samson shaking himself and the prophet outrunning horses. And what, and the rivers being parted. This same spirit of power, Holy Spirit. He is within us.
As born-again believers, and you must stay full. You must be filled every day. Be full, keep filled. Because if you're just a cistern, that holds water in a drain cra... the Bible talks about cracked cisterns, which is a big cement thing full of water to, we had a house in one of our, my dad's places where they would catch rain water, and a third of the basement was a great big cement pool. And, you could look over the edge and look down, filled with water, in our, and the house would take water out of that cistern. If there was ever a leak, you were in trouble. And it says, we don't want to be just dead fungus-y, frog-filled, tadpole-d, cisterns.
We want to be wells with fresh water coming up all the time. And then rivers of living water flowing out of you. If you've never thought about Holy Spirit, study it in your Word. There are others who are here, you've been filled with the spirit, but you've not maintained a filled life. Go back to praying in the spirit. Seeking God's Word. Asking Holy Spirit to be your best friend, and live a life of staying full of His presence. It's the power of Holy Spirit. It keeps me smiling. And He'll do the same for you.
Father, I pray today. That You'd touch every one of us in a very special way. There'd be an awareness that, we need You. We need to stay filled with the spirit, every day of our lives, as moms, dads, teenagers, as young boys, young girls, that Father, we can live a life where we never have to let go of this filled experience, knowing Your power, Your strength, to, to handle every situation. Wake every one of us up in this area, I pray.
If you don't know Jesus Christ as your Saviour, if you're here today, you're watching. It's a decision only you can make. And you need to simply just say this, to God. Just say:
Dear God, thank You for sending Jesus. Who died on the cross in my place. So that I could be forgiven, and I could be a brand new creation. So Jesus, come into my heart. Come into my life. From today and on, I'm following You. In Jesus' name, amen.