There was a season of holiness and awesomeness - the gifts of the Spirit rose up in the crested wave and we RAN to keep up with what was going on. Prophetic ministry was strong (for that season of understanding it) as well as a global awareness of what God was doing, as well as other gift ministries which included deliverance and healing and end time ministry focus. The tangible Presence of God was felt (where I was) without "strange" manifestions, except for speaking in toungues and upraised hands to the Lord. Even a little dancing broke out, "as David danced." Miracles were not uncommon. Angels were seen, as well as visions of Jesus that didn't seem to lead people too "way out" there. Now a lot of this does not seem so "uncommon" from a few short years prior!
Yes, out of the zeal, there were excesses as there are in any movement. But what was gained was a foretaste for many different people groups and denominations. Many many ministries were birthed through this time of holy encounter and even when it seemed to fade or die out or even appear broken with ministry scandals and failure, the work still went on, as in the book of Acts when the people who had gathered for the initial outpouring were scattered back into their homelands with this "new message" of God's love and acceptance and visitation. And the good news is that the visitations have not ceased. They are just not so centralized as they once were before.
Many attempts with some successes have been made for that centralization but fleshly attempts could never accomplish what God did sovereignly through that "charismatic" move. In those services, one could ask, "How many Catholics, Lutherans, Methodists, Jewish, and Baptist people are here?" and healthy numbers would raise their hands in one meeting (after another).
Even different cultures and races were finding unity together despite the hindrances of language and culture styles. There was a supernatural blending as never before, with missions emphasis and representation that rocked the world and the church world of that time. It was an incredible move where God broke down the walls that not only separated but also that opened doors to new and blended revelation.
Was that controversial? You betcha! But the walls came tumbling down and the revelation poured in and with fear and trembling the Church grew significantly NOT just in numbers but in understandings.
When the de-centralization took place because the leaders could not handle it, people separated and there was grief and mourning but that led to more individualized personal growth and by return, the pollenation of many other established mainline type ministries with the gifts of the Spirit.
The battles were hard, but the battles were also won. While we came to understand persecution from the brethren, the joy of newfound fellowship in the gifts also exploded among like kind in fresh zeal for evangelism and even later in prayer. Much bridge building was worked at and accomplished.
The results of this "charismatic" move (charisma means gifts or gifted) did bring about much controversy and some excesses, but even more, it brought about unity. So honestly, when people attack charismatics as "flakey, dingy, flippant, crazy, nuts" or paint them with many other derogative terms, I get offended.
You can't hurt me personally with those terms, and perhaps I have qualified a time or two for my exhuberance or a misunderstanding in my personal struggle, but when people label negatively this group move, I cringe because I think they don't know what they do.
This move was not a misfit move of God. It was indeed a most sovereign move that changed Christianity as we know it today to be a strong force in overcoming world evils. It will continue to grow, building on the future and former moves of God, for indeed it is Him Who by His Spirit is building His Church.
Competitive attempts at organization will never succeed to daunt God ordained Spirit led moves of God. The Body of Christ needs to continue to grow in its understandings of the blended moves of God. People may do it different but Spiritual fruit will reveal Spiritual purpose. Instead of looking for what's wrong and labeling those who are different than we are, can we see the Big Picture of a Big God who loves His Creation?
When we seek God for His moves, can we be content at what He gives us? God wants power moves more than we do. But He will only be recognized for Who He really is rather than what we bill Him to be on our advertizing flyers and billboards that seem like it is all "here or there."
Is there anything wrong with promoting Him? Absolutely not. But let's not let declaring our opinions that "this is it" take the place of allowing God to reveal Who He really is through man He created in His Image, male and female.
We don't have to hype and promote and cloak in mystery or fear what God is really doing or is all about. He is Who He is and we fail Him by not obeying Him personally and individually. Too often in the name of a group mentality, we compromise what is really Truth. We ourselves lose out when that happens.
God will bless what He can bless and it is His desire to bless, reveal and demonstrate, but if our integrity is lacking, His Hands are tied.
God bless you.