Potter at wheel

What the Lord desires is to use us as a channel to do His work.

He desires to be our Life. And to use us to minister His life to the world.

To be the sole source and sole fulfillment of all our needs. As well as all our work.

I am afraid that this is something most Christians don’t grasp. Or, are unwilling to grasp.

Most see the fulfillment of a need as the Prime Objective in Christian service. To solve the problem. To meet the need. To Get ‘R Done!

The Need is NOT the Calling

Most Christian leaders in our age have become pragmatists — in one form or another.

They see Christian ministry as work that needs to be done. And are busy organizing, planning, and remodeling the church in order to solve problems. To reach more people. To be more engaged in meeting the world’s needs.

And, in many cases, just to keep enough people coming to church so that the staff can continue to get paid. So that the church can pay its bills and keep the doors open.

But, they often fail to see that we are not called to that.

We are not called to maintain the ministry. We are not called to keep the group together in some form of outward unity. In fact, there is a whole pile of Christian stuff that we are not called to do.

The Hand-Made Difference

For example, study the following passage very carefully.

But when he saw the multitudes, he was moved with compassion on them, because they fainted, and were scattered abroad, as sheep having no shepherd. Then said he unto his disciples, The harvest truly is plenteous, but the labourers are few; Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth labourers into his harvest. ” (Matthew 9:36-38)

What, precisely, did the Lord command the disciples to do here?

The answer is, to Pray.

He first alerted them to the need. In order that they could then pray to the Father. So that, the Father would send forth the laborers into the fields of the world.

Laborers that He would hand pick. To select the specific men and women He would prepare for that special task.

Yet, almost every pastor and missionary will tell you that the need on the mission field is the call for YOU to go. But this is not necessarily so.

We are called to pray.

Is This an Excuse for Inaction?

This establishes a pattern in the Lord’s work.

That all things begin with prayer. Our first responsibility is to go to the Lord to see what He has specifically called us, individually, to do.

But, why is this way correct as opposed to a general calling for us all to go? After all, how is all the work going to get done if we just let everyone “off the hook”? And, how can we not go when the fields are, right now, ready for harvest?

Can we afford to delay? Does not the urgency of the situation demand setting aside these esoteric and academic considerations?

Which you know, as well as I, that most leaders are thinking.

Who see this line of thinking as merely an excuse for inaction. As an excuse coming from cold and disobedient hearts. Or from just lazy Christians. Or for those Christians who are not willing to do the hard things.

Called to a Person

The answer to all this is that we are called to a Person.

We are Not called to a Program, Not to a Coalition, Not to an Organization, Not to a Declaration, Not to a Cause, Not to a Movement, and Not to a Need.

We must realize that there is a great difference between life and death in our work; even work that dedicated Christians do. We must see what is really at stake so that we will stop handling those things that have no life.

Things that are simply the results of our own efforts. Regardless of the Humanistic need or our zeal or our devotion toward the Lord that fulfilling these things may involve.

Because, if we stubbornly continue to put confidence in our own good intentions, or own love, our own compassion, or our own devotion, we will simply become the Cause of our own Effect.

For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.” (Philippians 2:13)

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