DRAWING NEAR – PART 6
ENCOURAGE ONE ANOTHER
I want to speak a word of encouragement to those that have been called and anointed to accomplish a mission for the Lord. This includes every child of God because He has drawn a blueprint for each of His children’s destiny even though it seems at times that many do not realize it. Sitting around on the couch waiting for Jesus to come is NOT exactly being faithful – because it is NOT doing what He is saying to do and this is just plain old disobedience to Jesus (and on top of this it is NOT demonstrating love!). If you consider yourself a Christian and do not have a burning passion for lost souls then repent. Why? Because your burden is the thermometer for your love. It is clear that if you do not care about whether people go to hell or not – you do not have love. And if we do not have love – we are in a serious condition. We have thought for so long that all of the fruits and character traits of Jesus automatically manifest themselves in our lives as a part of the package of salvation. Yes, Jesus comes into our heart and of course He is filled with the glory of God because He is God – but the transformation process and the hard work of renewing our mind have only begun! Amen! This is a whole lot better preaching than you are reacting!
After we repent we can simply pray and ask God to light our fire today – and amazingly by His grace…He will! However, let us not even mouth the words if we are not sincere, God is tired of hearing people pray the sleepy prayers and sing the songs that declare how they have surrendered ALL when they have no intention of doing it! If you have no desire to ask God to get you excited about Him then you need to prepare how you are going to explain it when you see Him face to face. I’m not trying to be mean or rude – I am just saying it is time we lay all of our cards on the table and for once in our life be honest. My brothers and sisters, our brains have been molded a certain way and to be truthful, probably not much of it is going to be altered. Why do you think rehab is so difficult? We want what we want and (with very few exceptions) we choose every minute exactly what satisfies us and makes us content. The Lord keeps reminding me that simply raising our hand and requesting the free gift of eternal life has very little to do with salvation because everyone wants to avoid an eternal hell. God knows that changing our HEART has everything to do with taking up our cross and declares that straight is the gate and NARROW is the way that leads to everlasting life and FEW there will be that find it. He does not lower His standards for the lazy and mercy was never intended to be a compromise of His truth.
Our lives only contain so many hours and each one that passes by is one that is subtracted from our total. I heard a preacher say the other day that most Christians have never witnessed or presented the gospel and only 5% of Christians have ever LED another person to Christ in their life. Allow me to say, if you believe that what you have inside of you is NOT worth telling others about, then you need to ask just how important Jesus is to you! Or maybe many Christians are embarrassed to declare that Jesus is their Lord and love Him with all their heart. I am reminded of Mark 8:38, “Whosoever therefore shall be ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation; of him also shall the Son of man be ashamed, when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels.” Christianity is not waiting in an airport holding a one way ticket to paradise! Christianity is being so excited that Jesus lives in our heart that we are climbing up on the roof so that we can tell everyone that Christ died and resurrected to rescue and save the lost! Is this the way you look at it – or is this being too radical, extreme, off the deep end or overly fanatical? Also let us not condemn Peter for denying Jesus. He had just seen Jesus be nearly beat to death and when someone recognized him as being one of His disciples – he became afraid. Are we positive how we will react if there is ever a sword held against our neck? Let us pray that God will give us the strength and confidence to stand peacefully in the face of death as we acknowledge Jesus as our Lord. This passage in Matthew 10: 32-33 just came to my mind, “Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before My Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny Me before men, him will I also deny before My Father which is in heaven.” Every child of God (whatever their calling) should be ready to give an account of their faith. All Christians are not preachers or teachers so to speak but all should eventually be able to give their testimony and present the gospel. Soldiers are NOT prepared to fight on the front lines until they are trained and that is the reason we read and study our Bible and pray. Likewise neither is the Christian prepared to advance into higher realms of spiritual responsibility until they understand what God requires. The idea is to grow in spiritual maturity so that God can use us. Help us God.
If you are sensing today that it seems very few are excited about what you are doing, and maybe you have been in the ministry for a long time and are disappointed with your effectiveness and what you have achieved – remember that God created you to be an instrument for HIS purpose. He is the one that has placed the burning passion within you so that you might fulfill HIS calling. He anointed and empowered you to accomplish His SPECIFIC will. You are unique and no one else has been called to do what JESUS has called YOU to do! Never give up on the holy vision that He has placed within your heart. You see, He does not look at things the way we do because His ways and thoughts are much HIGHER. If He has called you to minister to 50 people and you obey Him – then He absolutely counts that as being faithful and holds you in high regard with honor and respect. If He calls someone else to minister to 10 million people and they do it – that does not mean that God is MORE pleased with them. He loves and considers BOTH of you equally pleasing. We stumble with things like “numbers” and become discouraged when we look over the fence and see someone that seems to be accomplishing MORE than we are. But it’s not about how much or who is doing more – it’s all about doing what He is asking US to do! Amen! Remember the parable in Matthew chapter 20, where the land owner hired workers throughout the day and at the end of the day He paid them all the SAME? We always want to argue and tell God what to do and how to do it when we just need to listen – trust – obey – and be happy.