Monday, July 21, 2008

This Week...

...Our church has started our annual mission conference.

Every year we have been blessed with a Spirit-anointed guest speaker at our conference, and this year is no different. Pastor Alun McNabb has already been a great blessing to us, when he spoke at church yesterday.

The focus of our meetings is not missionaries alone; rather, the purpose of the conference is two-fold. We meet and fellowship with some of our missionaries (or new missionaries), so that we are better able to pray for them and, most emphasized, we search our own hearts and come before God in order to be equipped for our own missionary lives.

In regards to the first focus, I've decided that I'd like to share with y'all some of the missionaries we pray for, and ask you to offer a prayer for them this week. If only ten of you do this, and I share a new missionary five days this week, that's 50 more times that the throne room of Heaven has been entered in behalf of these missionaries!

Today I invite you to visit the site of the Zwingles. My family has been blessed by getting to know this couple personally. They have a burden for the country of Russia, and they are both filled with zeal and energy; ...and it's contagious! Please browse their site to let them tell you about themselves in their own words, and then pause for a moment and pray for them.

Now...in regards to the second focus of our mission week; our own hearts....

Every day, I am learning more of the importance of this matter. My own missionary life. The life of a missionary and the life of a Christian are the same. I am called to preach the gospel to every creature. How, where, and when differs for every Christian, but we are all called.

All.

I wish you could all feel the atmosphere in our church family right now. We have been praying and praying for the Lord to burden our hearts for the lost, and to make us witnesses. I believe the Lord might answer our prayers soon - maybe even this week.

I've been praying for revival in my life, and telling people that I want it, and telling God I want it... I've also been acting as if "revival" was some mysterious thing. As if it only happens when you get worked up enough, serious enough, spiritual enough.... and in the end, only God decides if you're dedicated enough to receive revival.

But reading through my Bible recently, I've made a personal discovery that is quite life-changing.

I started spotting people in the Bible who were spirit-filled. People like David, Joshua, Josiah, Paul, Stephen...people who were used by God. People who had personal revival.

There was a common factor in all their lives.

It was so simple, it blew me away.

They obeyed.

They obeyed.

They obeyed.

They all had a enormous delight in God's law. They all knew God's law. They knew His Word backwards and forwards.

They all broke the Ten Commandments; and knew it.

But they obeyed this command; Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, with all thy soul, and with all thy might. EVERY time they sinned, the repented with bitter tears. They went back to the narrow way, and walked therein.

It was so simple. God used those who obeyed.

I'm not talking about obeying to earn salvation; that's another matter. I'm talking about which Christians are used of God to do mighty works. Isn't that real revival? Being used? The ones used were the ones who obeyed. Not the ones who were mysteriously spiritual. Not the ones who prayed long prayers (though they all were pray-ers).

Salvation isn't given to those who try their own ways, but to those who use the Way God has set out in His Word. Likewise, I believe revival isn't given mysteriously to those who are "spiritual enough," but those who obey what they have learned.

Picture it. A Christian who is constantly witnessing. He is kind and loving. He is not easily angered. He assembles with the believers every chance he gets. He tithes. He keeps the sabbath day holy. He obeys those in authority over him. He cares for the poor and widows. He guards his tongue. He searches the scriptures. He humbles himself. He loves the Lord with all his heart, and his every action shows it. Wouldn't we say this is a revived Christian? Yet all he's doing is obeying.

God promises to save all who come to Him; He will in nowise cast them out. He also promises to bless those who obey. He blessed David with revival. He blessed Joshua with revival. He blessed Josiah. He blessed Paul. He blessed Stephen.

Why didn't I see this before? Lord, forget about making me "extra spiritual." Forget about making my prayer life amazingly complex and flowery. Forget about making me perfectly poised in every situation. Just help me obey!!!!

2 comments:

Under Southern Skies said...

Hello,

I found your blog through Bethany Wissmann's. I look forward to checking back and looking through your posts when i have more time.

Amber said...

Welcome to my blog, Under Southern Skies! It's neat that we share a mutual blog friend in Bethany Wissmann.
Please comment as you have time; I look forward to getting to know you better.
~Amber