8.09.2013

We need to say, "Yes, Lord" and let Him take care of the rest.

The Lord often takes me through a thinking and praying process, just about lets me get settled, and then WHAP – hits me over the head with a Scripture to drive His point home.  Sometimes I am waiting for it, but often I forget this is how He works with me.  If I am honest, I rather like forgetting because it always seems like a surprise when it happens!

The conversation with my friend about being content wherever the Lord has me serving – even if it means being another light bulb in a brightly lit room – has been rolling through my mind.  Though I am resolved, and feel confident that I am exactly where He wants me, it has been nagging me a little that I ever doubted in the first place.

Why wasn’t I able to see the truth before?  Why did I keep asking “What else, Lord?  What MORE can I do?”  Why did I keep seeking creative, and even dramatic, ways/places to serve, when the Lord has placed more than enough right in front of me?  Enough to keep me busy for years!  And the bigger question - Why was I discontent?

This is rarely a pleasant question to think through because we already know the answer- and it is not good.  Discontentment only stems from one place – selfishness.  A desire to have something you don’t, or a frustration that you have something you don’t want.  Either way, we are not willing to say, “Whatever YOU desire for me, Lord” because we are too busy whining.

I have not spent hours dissecting this question, and I am pretty sure I don’t need to, because every thought that has trampled through my mind has one common thread – pride.  Somehow I allowed myself to believe the lie that serving the church, serving Christians, serving mature believers, is not as glamorous or as noteworthy as trudging through the jungles of Africa, or preaching to inmates in a penitentiary.  THOSE people are making a difference.  THEY are pulling souls out of the depths of hell.  SHE is changing a life every time she rescues a child from slavery.  Me?  I am just telling Christians what they already know, or should know, from the pages of Scripture.  How does that change lives?

And that is when the Lord opened my eyes to see this passage:

“And He gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edification of the body of Christ, until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes.  Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way, into Him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love.”
Ephesians 4:11-16

It's so clear isn’t it?

for the equipping of the saints for the work of the ministry
for the edification of the body of Christ
causing growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love

The Lord has a specific design, a specific purpose, for placing Christians in ministries that are ONLY for the church.  The saints must be equippedThe body needs to be edified!  Growth needs to be evident.  And to make all of these things become a reality, the Lord gifted specific people with the skills, talents, and strength they need to accomplish His will.  In the church.

This is EXCITINGJust as exciting as missionaries who brave the dark places to share the Gospel, men and women who rescue children from the hands of evildoers, and those who provide shelter for those without homes or families, sharing the love of Jesus with each one.  Each has its place – each has its purpose – and whether that purpose is to be the hands and feet of Jesus to the lost, or to encourage one small group of Christians to love the Lord with all of their heart, soul, mind and strength … both must be done with passion, purpose and full surrender.

There will probably always be times when one side seems more exciting than the other - when our hearts are tempted to want to "do more" for the Kingdom.  But the truth is, the Lord gifted each of us with spiritual gifts, talents, skills, and strengths to be used for His glory, His purposes, and His ways.  And only He gets to choose where they are used, and with whom.  Our only responsibility is to say, "Yes, Lord.  Here am I.  SEND ME."  And let the Lord take care of the rest.

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