Tuesday, April 28, 2009

We Are a Sent People

I wonder when it happened that the church today, the true church, -those who are in Christ Jesus- missed what the great commission is all about. Matt 28 "Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit,teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age."
Mark 16:15 And He said to them, "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation."

When were we taught that it said "IF you are called to be a Pastor, Evangelist, or Missionary, THEN go into all the world...?

I know, as a ministry leader, I have been very frustrated in the past at the lack of participation in different in reach and outreach ministries we have done in our church. But here lies the problem....
Whether intentionally or unintentionally, and each church will have to answer that, laymen ( just regular church folks) are being told from the pastoral staff or teams that it is the job of the pastors to evangelize our friends, family, & neighbors. That for some reason the laity does not know enough to tell anyone about God and what the Son did for them. And I know that well meaning pastors never intended for that message to be broadcasted, but that is what is being heard.
How many times have you invited people to come to your church? A few times. But how many people have you yourself told about Jesus Christ and what He did for you? Not too many.
My point is, without even thinking about it, we have pushed the responsibility of reaching "Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and the remotest part of the earth.(Acts1:8)"off on someone else. What easier way out than to put it on the Pastor. And of course the Pastor, he's "called".

We are convinced that somehow we are fulfilling our Christian duty when we invite them to church. "Oh I've got to get them to church because church will fix all of their problems."
It is a lie that is straight from hell. And we have taken the bait with no reservations. The enemy is winning this battle by far! And I'll tell you why. This may actually shock you so get ready.....


I don't care what program you are doing, I don't care if you have the latest technology, the most popular songs, or the greatest carpet in town.....they do not want to be apart of your church. If they did, they would come.
Let me prove this point. How many people of the world that do not know God are coming to your church? If your church is growing, is it because of salvations, or are you just swapping members? People that come because they got bored at their old church or got their fragile little feelings hurt. That's expanding the Kingdom? I don't think so.

So the enemy is winning. Not because we don't love God. Oh we love God! "How great is our God", we sing! And we mean every word of it. We love our pastors, we love their teaching, the music, the people(most of them), the programs! It just makes us so happy to be there! And there's nothing wrong with that. We need to be there. The problem is that we expect the world to come to us.
You want to know what they are thinking about your church. "All they want is my time and money." and that says "they don't care about me". That saddens my heart. We have convinced ourselves that the world will come to us and it is simply not true. Gone are the days when everybody went to church. Jesus used the word Go because he knew that they would not come to us.

Here is a TRUTH for you. No matter who you are, or what your job is when you wake up in the morning, if you know Jesus Christ as your savior, then you are called to the ministry and called to be on God's mission. So if you have been struggling, not knowing if God has "called" you, Then stop. The answer is a big YES. So that is no longer a question for you. The only questions you should be asking is Who and where?

It would be so easy just to read this and say, Amen, right on, preach it girl. But what difference would that make in the kingdom? Are our lives backing up our words? We can hear good whole truth all day long and still be completely ineffective for the Kingdom.

Lord, let me be the first to confess that I have just been full of words. I know what sounds good. I know how to talk like someone who is really on fire for God. But that's all it is. Talk.
When will I realize what I'm doing? When will my actions back up my words? I want my life to reflect someone who is empowered by the Holy Spirit and who is faithfully fighting the good fight.

We must live as a sent people. Letting go of everything that we will not take with us when we die. If we did not love this world, we would have no problem going where ever the Spirit leads.

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Acts 12:5-10

O.k. It will be a while before I have pictures.....and I have no idea how long a while is.It's taking forever to finish because I can't make up my mind on the colors!

So I was reading in Acts today and this is what God showed me. In Acts 12, Herod put Peter in prison basically for a political reason. He didn't break any law, he had just ruffled some feathers of some of the non-believing Jews, and Herod saw that it would please them to have Peter killed. But the awesome thing is, the church was praying. It says in vs. 5 "So Peter was kept in prison, but the church was earnestly praying to God for him." The most important word to me in that sentence is the little word, BUT. "But the church was earnestly praying". And because the church was praying, his chains fell off, the gate opened, he was set free and his life was saved!

That's so amazing!! I could spend an hour on this......
Just in closing, remember this -

When the church prays, chains are Broken, Doors are Opened, and peoples lives WILL BE SAVED. Amen