Molding a lump of clay

Molding a lump of clay
I am a work in progress, molded by my Maker, refined by His fire, shaped with His love. Walk the journey with me.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Strenghten Yourself in the Lord - Pt. 3

The following excerpt is taken verbatim from Bill Johnson's book, p. 47.

The Frontlines of Battle...the Place of Greatest Safety

While each believer has a different assignment corresponding to his or her unique gifts and talents, these assignments work to accomplish one purpose - the establishment of the Kingdom "o
n earth as it is in Heaven." This Kingdom, as Scripture says, "forcefully advances" (see Matt. 11:12) - first to displace the attitudes of the carnal man in our own lives, and then to destroy the works of the devil around us. The violence of this process may seem overwhelming at times, but it is safer to stay in the midst of this conflict than to adopt a defensive, conservative approach to the Christian life.

The safest place for us to be at any point in our lives is passionately pursuing God and
the purposes to which He has called us. Passionate pursuit positions us for advancement. To live in the defensive posture protecting what we have is quite dangerous. Just ask the man who buried his one talent (see Matt. 25:18-28).

Our assignment and destiny is to advance the Kingdom, and comes with an umbrella of grace and favor that works to preserve our lives, no matter what's going on around us. The moment we take a back seat in our pursuit of the Kingdom is the moment we become exposed to fier
y darts of deception.

Wow...what a challenge. How often do I live in the defensive posture?

It reminds me of do it properly you have to lean downhill, into the 'danger', so to speak.

If you lean back, you'll surely fall on your bum.

To advance God's kingdom on this earth, we have to lean into the 'danger', fac
our giants head on. In snowboarding, leaning forward on the board gives you greater control over the direction of the board. Once you master that, the fear recedes and the exhilaration kicks in. It's a blast!

Do I have the right 'stance' in my position as a soldier in God's army? Am I in greater control over my thoughts, reactions and attitudes that direct my responses and choices? Do I live in fear of what God is leading me into, or do I experience the exhilaration of following Him in trustworthy abandonment?

And what am I doing with the talent God gave me? Am I stewarding it properly so as to multiply it, or have I buried it somewhere for whatever reason?

Tough questions that I'm still grappling with.

I don't want to take a backseat in God's kingdom, but sometimes it's scary following Him. I'm afraid of what I might have to give up...the perceived cost can seem too big a price.

Help me, Daddy, to trust You more, to know Your faithfulness, Your goodness, Your grace. Reconcile in me those parts in conflict...the one that fears total abandonment to You, and the one that desires it more than life itself. You know my innermost being, and I trust You to untangle the knotted bits without breaking the string.


Esthermay said...

The safest place is definitely in HIS arms – in His arms we naturally want to passionately pursue Him and His purpose in our life. It’s impossible not to. . .

I think the reason we see some Christians more gung-ho and perhaps falling on their bum in pursuit of advancing His Kingdom is because they’ve learned that they CAN indeed live in this unkind world and at the same time still rest in his arms. It’s not what the world thinks of us that matters – it’s GOD’s heart we need to touch. My dear husband is the greatest example of this I have ever ever seen or met. He is amazing!

Once we’ve learned to not care when others see us fall while snowboarding (or mess up as a pastor’s wife or mom or writer or whatever . . . . ) THEN . . . we are free to advance His Kingdom. It’s a hard place to arrive at. Really is.

Can you snowboard in Africa? Looks very much like a Minnesota activity :-)

Hey! Great Blog!

Michelle Sybert said...

I really appreciated waht you had to say here. Great post! How often do I lean into danger for the sake of the Gospel?!