Category Archives: Ministry

Redeemed Sinners in the Hands of a Mighty God

When we think about the heroes of the faith we often have a misconstrued view of them. It is common to believe that those individuals were a touch above everyone else, and that in order to be used by God we need those special skills too. It is true that those believers were gifted, but their impact on God’s Kingdom was not because of their ability, rather it was a result of the God who wielded them. When we grasp what God is seeking and how He works with His creation we too can significantly impact this world for Him.

God Used Moses

In Exodus 3, God says to Moses that He has seen the afflictions of His people, and He will deliver them. God tells Moses His plan for the nation of Israel, and then commands him to go to them saying, “I AM has sent me to you.” God then shows to Moses several signs he can display to confirm God’s message to the Israelites. After seeing God’s miraculous power, Moses says to the Lord, “Please, Lord, I have never been eloquent, neither recently nor in time past, nor since You have spoken to Your servant; for I am slow of speech and slow of tongue.” God’s response to Moses is classic. He says, “Who has made man’s mouth? Or who makes him mute or deaf, or seeing or blind? Is it not I, the Lord? The Lord responds essentially by saying that He is God. Moses you’re worried about speaking, but you forget that I made your mouth. We often forget in the midst of our challenges that we serve the Almighty God, and He has made everything. Even though we are immensely inadequate God can work through us if we will just realize that He is God.

God Used Asa

One of my favorite verses is “For the eyes of the Lord move to and fro throughout the earth that He may strongly support those whose heart is completely His.” (2 Chronicles 16:9) This verse is written in the context of judgment, but it brings hope to those who want to serve God. The history of the nation of Israel with regard to its Kings is not complicated: they have many bad kings and the occasional good one. A great king was Asa, and he did what was good and right in the sight of the Lord (2 Chronicles 14:2). When Asa became king, the first thing he did was remove the pagan altars and the high places, shatter the sacred idol pillars and chop down the Asherah poles (2 Chronicles 14:3). He removed before God everything that was a sin. (Interestingly, if we want to be used by God we also have to destroy the idols in our lives.) In battle before the Ethiopians, he sought the Lord, and his army was able to triumph over a million men.

However, as Asa got older he began to depend on his wealth and did not seek God (2 Chronicles 16:3). The Lord had orchestrated events in such a way that Israel could have wiped out their enemy. But instead of trusting in God, Asa depended on another army. That’s when the prophet tells him: God is always looking to support someone whose heart belongs to Him. God pretty much tells Asa, you think you’re special but your success is only because of Me. The principle being: God determines who will rise and fall and He is always seeking to support a heart that is fully committed to Him.

God Used Carrey

William Carrey the ‘Father of Missions’ started out repairing shoes for people. He told men and women that he wanted to go to India to do missions, and many scoffed at him. One man said to him, “Sit down, young man! When God pleases to convert the heathen, He’ll do it without your help or mine.” Carrey had only a primary school education, but he had a heart that wanted to serve God, and a desire to share the Gospel to unreached people groups. Carrey said, “we have only to keep the end in view, and have our hearts thoroughly engaged in the pursuit of it, means will not be very difficult.” The Lord enabled that man who loved Him to learn 34 different languages, and the people of India have the Bible because of him.

God Used Moody

In order to be used by God we don’t need a particular set of gifts; we just have to be willing and committed to Him. In fact, it is God who does the gifting and qualifies the called. Henry Varley spoke at a prayer meeting and said the famous words, “the world has yet to see what God can do with a person wholly committed to Him.” A person in the back said to himself, “By the grace of God I will be that man.” The person who made that decision was D.L Moody the Billy Graham of the 19th Century. Through the power of the Holy Spirit, Moody was able to lead thousands of people to know Christ. He had a 4th grade education, but his heart was fully committed to God.

God Can Use You

Our impact on the Kingdom of God does not depend on our ability; rather it is contingent on our relationship with the Savior. When we have a heart that belongs to God there is no limit to what He can do with our lives. God used Moses the weak communicator, Carrey the Shoemaker, and uneducated Moody. God can use you and me if we would just give our hearts to Him, and place His will above our own. “The eyes of the Lord move to and fro throughout the earth that He may strongly support those whose heart is completely His.”

 

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2 Essential Ingredients for Ministry

For any ministry in the body of Christ, there are two essential ingredients that are a must. Regardless of your position and station in life, you must be in the Word and you must love people. With these two ingredients you form the bedrock of your life’s work.

Love the Scriptures

As we study God’s Word we are able to equip and encourage other individuals. The guidance we receive is not from the world, but from God. If are ignorant of the Bible, it isn’t possible to bring the healing that comes from God’s Word. Our words apart from Scripture are meaningless; they are ineffectual in transforming the life of an individual. It is the Word of God that is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, convicting the thoughts and intentions of the heart (Heb 4:12). In order to teach Scripture we must be in Scripture. Do we spend time growing in God’s Word?

In discussing knowledge there is always a danger of going overboard. It was Robert Anthony who said, “some people drink from the fountain of knowledge, some gargle, and others drown themselves.” We spend time in Scripture never just to acquire knowledge. Our goal is always to know our Savior cognitively and experientially. Our knowledge of Him through Scripture is the lens through which we interpret our experiences.

Love the People

By reading God’s Word, we grow in love and that manifests itself by showing love for people. Our love for people is what makes our theology warm and the lack of it makes our theology cold and distant. It is our love that distinguishes the body of Christ from the rest of the world. “By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another” (John 13:35). When a church has lost its love, that church has lost its ability to represent Christ. It may be a Baptist or a Presbyterian Church, but it is not Christ’s church. For the churches that bare the seal of Christ are marked by love.

If we love God’s Word and love people we will have the foundation for a fulfilling ministry.