Monday, August 3, 2009

Devotional 030809

Dear brothers and sisters,
Good morning. Our Lord is doing wonderful thing in shaping our lives each day. His plan is to make us holy through our daily struggle in life. We have struggle because we know what is good but our flesh tells us to do otherwise. Sometimes, this struggle could become very severe and we felt like totally helpless and defeated. Just as Paul said, “I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within my members. What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death?” (Romans 7:23-24); it is usually in this kind of desperation and disappointment that, we experience the power of His grace, and we have deeper appreciation of what God’s mercy is all about.

"Jesus took the Twelve aside and told them, "We are going up to Jerusalem, and everything that is written by the prophets about the Son of Man will be fulfilled" (Luke 18:31). Jerusalem stands in the life of Our Lord as the place where He reached the climax of His Father's will. "I seek not my own will, but the will of the Father who has sent me." That was the one dominating interest all through our Lord's life, and the things He met with on the way, joy or sorrow, success or failure, never deterred Him from His purpose. "He steadfastly set His face to go to Jerusalem."

The great thing to remember is that we go up to Jerusalem to fulfill God's purpose, not our own. Naturally, our ambitions are our own; in the Christian life we have no aim of our own. There is so much said today about our decisions for Christ, our determination to be Christians, our decisions for this and that, but in the New Testament it is the aspect of God's compelling that is brought out. "You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit--fruit that will last." We are not taken up into conscious agreement with God's purpose; we are taken up into God's purpose without any consciousness at all. We have no conception of what God is aiming at, and as we go on it gets more and more vague. God's aim looks like missing the mark because we are too short sighted to see what He is aiming at.

At the beginning of the Christian life we have our own ideas as to what God's purpose is - 'I am meant to go here or there,' 'God has called me to do this special work'; and we go and do the thing, and still the big compelling of God remains. The work we do is of no account; it is so much scaffolding or primitive work compared with the big compelling of God. "He took unto Him the twelve," He takes us all the time. There is more than we have got at as yet.

There are so much more that God can use you for. You may either never could have imagined how much the Lord would use you, or you never want Him to consider using you at all. You just want to remain mediocre kind of Christian. But in God’s dictionary, there is no such thing as layman or mediocre Christian. There is either disciple of Christ or non-believer; children of God or children of the world. In the spiritual realm, there are those who belong to God and those who are under Satan’s domain. Paul made it clear to us in Romans 8:5-9, “Those who live according to the sinful nature have their minds set on what that nature desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires…You, however, are controlled not by the sinful nature but by the Spirit, if the Spirit of God lives in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ.” God has a Master Plan in terms of how to use you. You will not know the details of this Plan. As a matter of fact, you may not want to know because you may want to run away from it just like Prophet Jonah. All you need to do it to follow His call and do what you already knew. Once you set your mind to obey His Word on a daily basis, and boldly live accordance to the Spirit, He will use you for His glory beyond what you can imagine, and give you His joy to the fullest.

I have never imagined I would become a pastor in United States for so long. I would never have imagined I had opportunity to serve Him in different capacity throughout the world. I may have my “dream” in terms of what to accomplish in life. But His dream is much bigger and far-fetched simply because He is God and I am not. If I acknowledge and allow Him to be God in my life, then I will discover unexpected joy and new horizons in following Him. Let’s remind and encourage each other in walking on this path of obedience like Christ.

Love you in accordance to the Spirit,

No comments: