Tuesday, February 16, 2021

Trust for the Mature Christian

If you consider yourself a mature Christian it is because you have been following the Savior Jesus Christ for some time. You most likely attend church faithfully and have read and reread your Bible. Spending time in prayer alone or with others is important and you are most likely serving in some capacity in ministry. 

Have you finally arrived? Do you have it all together? Is everything around you perfect and running smoothly? Are all your friends and family saved? Asking these questions helps us realize we are not a finished product. We are still needed in Christ's mission and there is much to be done.

It is easy to fall back, not trusting the Lord, because our immediate surroundings may be troubled or unstable. We become fickle when it comes to trusting in the Lord. We have expectations that everything should be perfect and easy. This wasn't true for Jesus' disciples and they were taught directly from Him!

Fortunately for the mature Christian, we are able to look back in our memory banks, remembering the numerous times we witnessed the Lord performing His works and His ways. Drawing from past experience we can minister with compassion to others going through similar trials. Others are strengthened and so are we.

Walking through challenges, circumstances and trials may seem overwhelming, unreasonable or impossible. We are pressed to find the Lord, which enables a deeper relationship, that is more satisfying and fulfilling. Searching the Word for direction, praying, asking and listening we receive bigger and better ideas.

The Lord challenged me and my husband to let go of our family home. In obedience we sold our home not knowing what to expect. We wondered if the Lord wanted us to move from the area. Was He calling us to be missionaries? Surprisingly we were lead to buy a larger home in the area, which didn't make much sense at the time. A few years later the Lord called us to start a home church. We certainly had enough space that included a long driveway with lots of parking space. Months later, our new founded church, moved into a building and we sold the house. We moved three more times before settling in a townhome. The Lord taught us to keep a light touch on the things of this world. He taught us that our home is a temporary dwelling place and correlated this to our bodies. We grew a greater understanding of the eternal soul living as if our bodies were a mere tent, that is easily moved from place to place, with the eternal destination heaven. Experience gave us the necessary maturity to understand trusting the Lord in all our ways. 

I can now better understand the psalmist;

"The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in Him, and I am helped, therefore my heart exults, and with my song I shall thank Him." Psalm 28:7

Our past experiences have taught us to trust and obey. There is nor better way to live. We can truly say that as you follow the Lord Jesus there is never a dull moment. Continue to allow the Lord to lead you. It isn't over until the day the Lord calls us home to His eternal paradise. What an exciting day that will be!

Take aways:

* Evaluate your relationship with Christ

* Do you follow His leading?

* Be a person of prayer, reading His Word

* Use your experience to help others

* Praise Him for His faithfulness

* Trust and obey


Tuesday, February 2, 2021

Trusting the Lord in Ministry

 How did you start your day? The answer to this question is critical to your ministry involvement. If you started your day on empty, you will most likely run out of gas.

Seeking the Lord in the morning is the best way to refuel your body and spirit for the long day ahead. God's Word is the bread of life which builds your trust in following His specific directions in all the decisions that will be made throughout the day.

The decisions you make will affect you, the direction of your ministry, and all those who are reaching out with you and supporting you. The Lord's still small voice is necessary to direct your steps, bring insight, ideas and vision. The more familiar you are to His voice the more you are able to trust the Lord's leading with the final outcomes.

Often we are afraid of change. We are comfortable with the patterns that have been developed that have formed a tradition in the way we address situations and service. It is not unusual to hear the words, "But, we have always done it this way!" Trusting a new objective or format can be hard. We love to continue cranking the wheel, proceeding to do the same old thing. Somehow we expect that it will miraculously produce a more effective or productive result. 

Making a daily habit of renewing ourselves in the Lord, we will find ourselves more receptive to others visions and perceptions. We gain a clearer mind for better alternatives, the very thing we have been praying for. Ideas spring forth for future growth while fear and doubt are held back. The following scripture confirms these ideals;

"Commit your way to the Lord, trust also in Him, and He will do it. And He will bring forth your righteousness as the light, and your judgement as the noon day." Psalm 37:5-6

When you commit your ministry to the Lord, you are able to trust Him with the effectiveness and growth. When the Lord encourages you to step out of your comfort zone, causing change, you have strength to trust and obey. In this you are allowing others to witness the Lord leading, guiding and providing. It is like a bright light shining on His righteousness and giving Him the glory. The scripture reminds us that personal  judgements and decisions are clearer, rebuking darkness, murkiness or confusion that could ultimately bog down your ministry.

Just as we trust our vehicle, that has a full tank of gas, we will trust the Lord with our ministry. We will ultimately reach a better destination. God is always working and is not finished with any of us yet!

Take aways:

* fill your tank with God's Word and presence

* know the Lord's voice

* accept new ideas and plans

* trust the Lord with your ministry

* let the Lord's light shine