The other day I awoke with a sense that the church had fallen into the trap of becoming a social services organization focused mainly on providing benefits for its members, when what we need is greater revival not greater benefits. The greater the awakening the better the revelation of the richness of our inheritance in Christ. The savior did not come to be served, but to serve and give His life a ransom for many. For the church to find it’s full voice like the first church in the book of Acts, its members must find the place of full investment. If you look at that first church you will get a picture of their devotion to what really mattered. It was a devotion to prayer and the word and a gathering for fellowship and service. I believe they were urged by the Spirit to service. Their motive for coming was not how me and my family could be served, but How God could use me and what I could bring for His use. As a friend of mine who does mission work in Peru said, ‘it is those few fish in your hand that the master multiplies with His word of blessing when you invest yourself in the feeding of others.’ I am grieved that too often people act as though their greatest contribution is their tithe. God sits on the treasuries of heaven and commands their release, but what He desires is you; all of you! I see people who need Jesus to touch them, but only on their terms; they will not have it any other way–it is serve me or nothing. I thought about the story of Naaman and Elisha in 2 Kings 5:9-11; there Naaman was angry at having to dip himself in a muddy river Jordan when there were better rivers where he lived. We need the savior’s touch, but He says, ‘devote yourself to My fellowship and serve Me..give up yourself and you will see My move’. The Holy Spirit will not move at your behest or by your dictates, but He moves when we invest ourselves and wait on His cause becoming energized by His power. Often I see people just sit in church as though they get nothing out of it. You may disagree with the message or not like the method of delivery, and the greatest preacher you ever heard may be somewhere else, but none of those things are the real issue. The real issue is our own heart in that we get out of it what we are willing to put into it. I am amazed at folks who come from time to time; they come with a pre-disposition; they have all the advice and can tell you how things are not what they should be and how better off they were at some other time. Yet, they contribute little or nothing and wonder why they get what they get. What about your investment in His kingdom? Will you be part of the work by serving with an attitude that believes Jesus can take your small fish and add His touch to feed many who without your service would otherwise have nothing to eat. To you He says, ‘invest yourself in my cause and believe I will use you…all of you!’
1 thought on “All of You”
Thank you for your latest posting. I read it and all I can do is turn to the Lord and ask Him to forgive me for my selfishness. Our old natures are so selfish and self-serving. When saved, we are called upon to be new creations, no longer centered on self, but to be centered on Christ (2 Cor 5:17). We want Jesus to bless us, on our terms, as you said, but how can He? How can He lead us into blessing, which is beyond all measure and our imaginations, unless we live for Him only and His purposes only? Paul said in Galatians 5:1 – “It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.” Gal 4:9- “But now that you know God–or rather are known by God–how is it that you are turning back to those weak and miserable principles? Do you wish to be enslaved by them all over again?”
We are called upon to obey all the commands of God, not just the ones we want to obey. Jesus said in John 14:21 – “Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me. He who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love him and show myself to him.”We show our love by our obedience. If we love much we will obey much. Also, this is the way in which Jesus shows Himself to us and we enter into the blessings of God. It is only upon His terms, not ours.
Again, thank you for your posting. It leads me to a time of sober contemplation of my own motives and heart.