Thursday, December 12, 2013
Reach, Teach & Multiply for Christ
Missions, world wide ministries, Facebook integration, living for Jesus.
Following the Holy Spirit
What does it mean to let God's Spirit lead you? What does it mean to you? Just sitting around praying and waiting for some miraculous event from God? Do you need Angels to descend upon you before you act?
Do you remember in John 11 when Jesus raised from the dead his friend, the dead man Lazarus? Jesus being God in flesh had the power to bring life back in a old rotting corpse, he had the power to create food to feed tens of thousands, and he had the power to command the wind and the waves of the sea to halt at his command, and he actually walked on water, defying natural order; yet before he commanded Lazarus to come forth did you see him commanding the heavy tomb stone to roll away from the dead mans cave? No! He commanded his disciples to roll the stone away. Why?
He certainly could have made that stone rise up and jump into the sea if he so commanded. Was it not Jesus that said if we only had the faith of a mustard-seed, we could move mountains? Yet, to make us feel useful and include us in his mighty works, he allowed and even commands us to do many things that God can certainly do himself. He wants us to feel we are part of what he is doing, and he knows our need to work in this way to feel useful to Him. He is our Heavenly Father and wants to include us his children in what he does, so we can know him and learn of him, and so we can grow.
You know God really has no "need" for us, but out of his love for us, he does want to use us for many things. This is why we were created, and as we obey and do the hard works he calls us to do, working towards the goals of our callings, these become our greatest joys and passions. (let there be no doubt about it, it is hard work following Jesus at times) This is our calling and purpose for living. We were made to live for Jesus..."who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good"(Titus 2:14)
So when you are drawn to give to a ministry that God is prompting you to help fund, to enable the work of Christ to be accomplished, or when you hear God's prompting to "Go" to the mission field on a short or long term trip, or to make a real sacrifice in your lifestyle to give more and make your life more about Jesus, do you allow fear to keep you from doing that which you know God has moved in your heart to do? Do you find multiple excuses? Do you tell young people they can accomplish anything they put their head to, but when it comes to God's commands, you are totally helpless, and you somehow expect God to "float you off your couch" and into doing the hard work of making happen what God has called you to do? God created each of you to be workers...workers for his glory and the kingdom of his Son. He put Adam in the garden to "WORK" it. How is this going to happen? By always waiting on clearer and stronger and more forceful direction by God to you, or will you listen to his "still small voice" and the clear directions laid out in his Word to get busy doing what you know you should be doing? Satan loves to send the Church into confusion over this, and to have us misuse the "wait on the Lord" passages to move us to inaction. Waiting on the Lord is more about his end promises to us, rather than our direction of action. God Spirit will prompt you if you are seeking Jesus and reading his Word.
Idle "faith" is the not the Spirit of God in us. God's Spirit is one of action, of motion and constantly flowing. There is a reason the Holy Spirit is portrayed as a river of life flowing from the throne of God and through us and into others. He is not the "living puddle", but the "living water" in which "Streams of life" flow.
"Therefore, prepare your minds for action; be self-controlled; set your hope fully on the grace to be given you when Jesus Christ is revealed." (1 Peter 1:13). Our God is not passive, neither was Jesus, and we are called to follow in his steps. Are you?
Let us be people of faith, living active faith in the power of Jesus who is for us; faith that causes us to act like all those spoken of in Hebrews 11 hall of faith who were "doers"! If you here God's call, do not harden your heart. Stop allowing Satan to deceive you into timidness. Boldly and courageously follow God. "For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline." (2 Tim 1:7). Today be people of faith, a person of action, stop putting off for "tomorrow" what you know is right for today.
Let us listen to the voice of God speaking to us through Hebrews 4:11 "Therefore God again set a certain day, calling it Today, when a long time later he spoke through David, as was said before:
"Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts."
This was not just for the Israelites of old, but it is for you today.
Take up your cross, deny yourself and follow Jesus today. This message is directed to God's children, not the unbelievers....which are you?
In Christ, David Shelton