If you are a minister of the Gospel, is your work confined to the four walls of a building or are you following the example of Christ and working or ministering to the people in the community where your congregation is located?
Christ participated in worship services unto God in the temple but His area of ministry unto God through ministry unto the people of His community and the world was borderless...HE WENT TO WHERE THE UNGODLY PEOPLE WERE IN ORDER TO BRING THEM INTO A RIGHT RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD.
He trained His disciples to do the same thing and then sent them out as apostles into their communities and the world to do the same thing also... TEACH, TRAIN AND MAKE DISCIPLES WHO WILL ALSO BE ABLE TO GO OUT AND EFFECTIVELY PROMOTE THE KINGDOM OF GOD AND NOT BUILD A MINI RELIGIOUS KINGDOM UNTO THEMSELVES.
Don't confuse worship service confined to a building with ministry unto God.
Before God calls you to the position or ministry He has created for you HE PREPARES YOU.
The process of preparation may not be recognized by you but His work is being completed in you.
Joseph didn't realize that his time of leadership in PRISON was a time of preparation for leadership of a nation of people UNTIL THE TIME CAME FOR HIM TO LEAD. .
David didn't realize that his time of leadership in HERDING and PROTECTING sheep was a time of preparation for him to lead and protect the nation of Israel UNTIL TIME CAME FOR HIM TO LEAD AND PROTECT THE NATION OF ISRAEL.
Wherever you are is a PROCESS OF PREPARATION for the job God has for you. REGARDLESS OF THE TYPE OF JOB YOU HAVE, DO YOUR JOB WITH THE MOST DEDICATION. You may be in the pit right now but you must go through the process of preparation in order to move to the next level.
IF YOU BECOME FRUSTRATED IN THE PIT REMIND YOURSELF THAT IF YOU DON'T LEARN THE LESSONS IN THE PIT...YOU CANNOT MOVE INTO THE PALACE LIKE JOSEPH OR LEAD A NATION LIKE DAVID...IN OTHER WORDS -YOU WILL NOT FULFILL THE PURPOSE FOR WHICH GOD CREATED YOU.
God gives us practical lessons in our relationship with Him.
Some of us are observers of the lessons, some are participants in the lessons and some of us are the objects of the lessons. Recently, I have been the object of a lesson and I’m amazed at the observations I have made and the lessons I have learned as a result.
For quite some time, I have had the task of going out in public looking disheveled, destitute, not properly attired, and hair in a mess – to name a few.
Family members, other people who know me, people who are professing Christians –some pastors and other leaders in various churches - saw me, looked at me in shock and disdain but never asked me once if I was ok or if I needed help with anything.
Three women that I know very well actually totally ignored me when I tried to greet them. They were well dressed and I looked like a bum. Amazingly, a teenage relative saw me at the same time and embraced me.
One day, I was in a store and one of my former students saw me. I think that day was the worst I looked during this period. She initially passed the store but turned back, walked up to me and just hugged me and held me for a few moments. Both she and the teenage relative did what Jesus would Jesus would have done.
The culmination of this lesson took place a few days ago when I was properly dressed but my hair looked like crap. The looks I got were amazing and amusing. No one said a word but the reactions were hilarious.
At the end of it all, I have learned so much through this process and I really see people as they are…my fellow human beings…and accept them as such, not based on what they have, what they look like or their societal status.
As believers in GOD, if we are not engaging in practical relationships with others, we may as well not be involved with HIM because HIS whole ministry through His SON, JESUS CHRIST, was based on that method.
Just as a furnace melts down iron and removes it's impurities, God melts us down to remove our impurities.The higher the temperature of the fire, the higher the grade of metal you obtain, therefore it stands to reason that the higher you want to rise in the things of God the more difficulties you will experience.
As a child of God, with a heart willing to serve Him and a desire to be all that you can be in and through Him, do not run from or be afraid of the difficulties you encounter in life because God is using His furnace of affliction to purify you for His purpose.
Every nation, large and small, has established laws of government to ensure the peace, safety and prosperity of their land. Embedded in these laws lies a freedom so great that some would choose death rather than give up their right to exercise this freedom. It is the freedom of choice.
When God created Adam, He placed him in the Garden of Eden where they spent precious time together in fellowship everyday. Even though Adam was the only human being on earth at this time, God established His law with Adam. This law consisted of one commandment which reads as follows, “of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat, but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die. Genesis 2: 16b- 17 (die in this context refers to spiritual death or separation from God).
Adam had a God given right to choose and he made his choice. Even though he knew the penalty for breaking God’s law, He chose to eat of the tree. As a result, he died spiritually - he was put out of the garden and his fellowship with God was broken. (Genesis 3: 23)
God established His universal laws for mankind and we have the freedom to choose whether we are going to obey them or not. The amazing thing is that we expect human governments to carry out the penalty required for breaking their laws but we expect God to allow us to live as we choose, without penalty for breaking His laws.
Ignorance of the law of the land is no excuse for avoiding the penalty that comes with breaking the law. Similarly, ignorance of God’s law is also no excuse for avoiding the penalty that comes with breaking His law.
The Bible, which is the inspired or God breathed word of God (2nd Timothy 3: 16) contains His laws that guide mankind. STUDY IT and KNOW IT!
Remember, ignorance of God’s Law is no excuse.
Anyone who has accepted Jesus Christ as his or her personal Saviour has undertaken a new lifestyle and must make constant effort to live his or her life according to the way of life as described in the Holy Bible, which is the word of God.
When you become a Christian and begin to activate your faith in Christ Jesus through careful study of the Word of God, active participation in worship services and the practical application of the two great commandments, as spoken by Jesus in Matt. 22:36-40 which are to love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, soul and mind and to love your neighbour as yourself, a domino effect sets in, leading you on your way to completeness in Christ.
Once your faith in Christ Jesus has been activated, you must continue the domino effect by living a life that is marked by moral excellence. This life of moral excellence will encourage you to get a better knowledge of who God is and what He expects of you. Once you have this knowledge of God, it will encourage you to develop self-control. Self-control leads to patience. Patience leads to godliness. Godliness is God-like-ness which leads to brotherly kindness. Brotherly kindness is love for your fellow Christians. At the end of this domino effect is love for everyone.
Once you have come to the place where you love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul and mind and you sincerely love everyone as you love yourself, the domino effect would have been activated and carried through. It is only then that you will be complete in Christ.
The seasons of life-natural and spiritual warming
As a result of the effects of global warming we are experiencing an imbalance in nature throughout the entire world. Places that should be celebrating summer are still experiencing winter and places that should be experiencing winter are still experiencing summer. The trees don’t know when to bear fruit and the ground hog probably doesn’t even know when to show its head to let us know that spring is here. The natural world is in chaos.
Just as God operates in the natural world in seasons, He also operates in the spiritual world in seasons. Unfortunately, like the natural world, the spiritual world is also experiencing an imbalance in its nature due to the effects of spiritual warming. Many churches are lukewarm and as a result the full power of God is not operating in the lives of the Christians. The spiritual world is in chaos.
The season for the milk of the word has passed for many Christians, but either they are refusing to grow up or they are spiritually anorexic and do not have an appetite for the word of God.
The season for reaping spiritual harvest is here, but many churches have not sown seeds of the word of God into their communities and there is no harvest for them or anyone else to reap.
The season for Jesus Christ to return and reap the harvest of His saints is fast approaching. How will He find you? Will you be ripe for the picking or will He refuse you and gather you up with the tares to be burned?
God's love for all human beings - regardless of choice of lifestyle - was expressed when He offered His Son, Jesus Christ, as a sacrifice for all mankind in spite of the different types of sins that we all commit or have committed. Jesus' love for mankind was expressed when He agreed to walk in the role of the sacrificial offering and willingly offered His life that we might live eternally through Him and with Him.
As with all laws of any land; the laws of God have been made known to all peoples of all backgrounds and all lifestyles. As people are responsible for knowing the laws of the land, they are responsible for knowing the laws of God. Just as Ignorance of the law of any country is no excuse for breaking the law, ignorance of the laws of God is no excuse for breaking the laws He has established upon the earth. God’s laws are clearly written in His word and it is the responsibility of each individual to know and practice them.
Some people blatantly break the laws of the land and some people blatantly break the laws of God. Some break the law in small ways and some break the law in what we consider to be big ways. In God’s eye, any breaking of His law is sin; all sin will be punished and no one who practices any kind of sin will be allowed into His kingdom.
As children of God, let us focus on bringing the message of salvation to the world, so that any who are living outside of God’s will, may experience the unbiased love of God through us, be converted and live a life that is pleasing unto Him.
In many instances, we have reinterpreted God’s Biblical point of view and made our own point of view more prominent.
People some of us wouldn’t dare associate with today are the people God had some of His people - who happen to be some of our most favorite Biblical characters - connected to in years gone by.
Joseph and Daniel were both in high political positions within pagan governments. God used them in these positions to free His people mentally, physically and spiritually and also to promote and expand His Kingdom. If Joseph and Daniel had looked to the future through their natural eyes, they may have lost hope in the future God had planned for them and the millions upon millions of people their lives would impact.
When we look through our natural eyes, we see with very limited vision and sometimes, stand in the way of progress. When we look through spiritually opened eyes, we see with limitless vision and follow progress – no matter what stands in our way.
Velyn Cooper ©2013