Rev. Vincent Harris is an elder in the Texas Annual Conference, currently serving at Journey of Faith United Methodist Church. He is a certified Christian Educator in the UMC. Below are his closing remarks from the CEF 2016 Conference. Slides from  this presentation may be found in the member section of the website.

This season of Pentecost, is a season for the church to be on fire. They were talked about, as people who appeared to be drunk, but not having anything but the Holy Spirit of God moving them.

It does not matter if you are not understood or appreciated as a Christian Educator. You are living out your gifts in the Spirit. There will always be someone who will try to throw water on your fire. You are special and your spirit is one that is anointed by and with the power of God for a good life.

The prophet Joel said that in the last days, God will pour out on all flesh [not just leading pastors, or lay leaders, big name, big givers, church pillars, leading families, but all flesh; not just young adults, children, and the seasoned adults, but all flesh, not just the rich, the educated, the privileged, the mighty, the talented, but all flesh] and your sons and daughters shall prophesy and your young men [and women] shall see visions and your old men [and women] shall dream dreams…It shall come to pass that whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

If the world has any faith it must come from the real, relevant teaching community that is filled with people with a vision for making radical changes in the lives of others as Jesus did.

Inspire the living faith (which whosoeer receive, the witness in themselves that have consciously believe), faith that conquers all, and doth the mountain move, and saves who eer on Jesus call, and perfects them in love.

If the world has any hope it must come from the real, relevant nurturing community that fills the people of God with the Spirit of God that speaks truth to power and heals broken lives –without apology

If the world has any love it must come from the real relevant praying community that is filled with people who have peace in their hearts, compassion in their souls, and a Spirit of life that cannot be quenched.

John Bunyan once saw in a vision a man throwing water on a flame of fire and yet the flame continued to burn. He wondered how it could keep on burning, until he saw there was someone behind the door pouring oil on the flame.

I’m so glad that when this world tries to drown out our Christian education fires, the Holy Spirit is there to keep pouring oil on the flame.

Sometimes I feel discouraged and it seems my works and my living is in vain, but then the Holy Spirit revives my soul again.

There is a Balm in Gilead, to make the wounded whole, there is a Balm In  Gilead to heal the sin-sick soul.

So I’ve learned in moments of testing and trial to pray like the hymn writer,

Won’t you pray with me:

Spirit of the living God fall afresh on me

Spirit of the living God fall afresh on me

melt me, mold me, fill me, use me.

Spirit of the Living God fall afresh on me.