In the 1960’s and 1970’s God mightily poured out His Spirit in America in what is now known as the Charismatic Renewal Movement. Charles Simpson was one of the leaders in the epicenter of this move of God. When Charles Simpson recently sat down with VFNtv, he recalled the early days of this Movement, and how the need to reach the masses resulted in the birth of New Wine Magazine.
When invited to speak at a particular conference in 1969, Simpson was asked to help with a new magazine that had just started, New Wine Magazine. At the time, Simpson was meeting all different types of leaders and teachers, without truly recognizing what was beginning. Simpson explains, “I felt honored and blessed to see this kind of action. I’d been, you know, locked up in the pastorate for a while, and now I’m out seeing God do things in the world. It’s wonderful…with no understanding of the implications when you start something.” Simpson continues, “I tell people, if it wasn’t for naivety, there wouldn’t be any obedience. God leads you out with a word and you do it. He doesn’t explain to you everything that’s going to happen, and He’s with you all the way”. The beauty of these moments is that this is when we learn the most.
Simpson continues to talk about how being a part of the editorial board of a newsletter was never of his own doing. It was all by Holy Spirit. Simpson explains, “a lot of wonderful good things were going on, but none of us were prepared for what really then happened…we weren’t smart enough to plan a movement. We were just teachers and each of us had our own focuses”. As he recalls the miraculous outpouring of God’s Spirit, one of the things that was noteworthy of the move of God was the people’s hunger for God’s Spirit. “It’s a tragedy that so much of the Church has lost its hunger.” Looking at today’s landscape of the Church, both Simpson and Greg Lancaster believe that the same hunger for God is coming back to the Church. It’s a beautiful thing when the Spirit of God moves, and His light shines brightly. Bright lights attract everything. As Simpson explains, “Every time there is a wave, it picks up debris and moves it to the beach, and that’s the way it goes. It’s not all pure. We think of revivals as being all pure, that’s not the case. And sometimes often, they leave debris in their wake, and the people that are used of God to bring it into being, sometimes are spent and broken”. When God moves, it is not always going to be smooth sailing. Difficulties will transpire. As someone who personally walked through these realities, Simpson shares plainly, “if God uses you in a significant way, you’re going to have your battles, and that’s what makes you strong. That’s what builds character and that’s where you learn lessons”. Simpson continues, “you don’t learn a lot in your success, you learn a lot in your failure and in trying to walk out the process”.
It is so beautiful and empowering to have so much wisdom and life lessons. See the full conversation with Charles Simpson as he openly shares about many more of his experiences in the Charismatic Renewal Movement. Also shared in this segment: Derek Prince, Ern Baxter, New Wine Magazine, Holy Spirit, magazine editor, character, trials, and tribulations. Greg Lancaster and Charles Simpson share in this segment.
Image courtesy of CSMPublishing.org
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