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Friday: Further Thought – Motivation and Preparation for Mission — 10 Comments

  1. I thank thee, O King Jesus, Lord of heaven and earth, because Thou hast taught us The Way of Love (Matthew 5:44 KJV) through authentic humility (Matthew 11:29 KJV). We love You 🤗 🤗.

    Help us all through your Holy Spirit to be more effective disciples that have the discipline to pull in more disciples (Matthew 4:19 KJV) 🙏.

    disciple discipline ... get it 😉 ?

    We thank thee, O King Jesus, Lord of heaven and earth, because Thou hast provided us with access to The Holy Spirit via the repentance process (Matthew 4:17 KJV) and shown us the true measure of The Way of Love (Matthew 5:44 KJV) seated in authentic humility (Matthew 11:29 KJV).

    We love you 🤗🤗

    Help us to have the discipline to be more effective disciples 🙏.

  2. The lesson this week drew heavily on the experience of the early church as it grouped after the ascension of Jesus. And often, our conversations about this period are tinged with a wistful longing that the whole thing will be repeated for us in the twenty-first century. As I have mentioned a couple of times this week, there is more to the mission than rushing winds and tongues of fire descending like doves on the heads of the believers. We are guilty of sometimes treating the Holy Spirit as the magic wand that will galvanize us into action.

    Pretty soon after the events of Pentecost we find church members bickering with one another about unfair treatment. The seeds of division arose between "them and us" and the church had to move from euphoria to maintenance. That was the real test. Do we still really love one another?

    I have been involved in evangelistic campaigns that have stirred hearts and challenged minds. Doctrines have been accepted, baptisms performed, and people received into fellowship. And then, the charismatic evangelist has left town and folk have settled back into the humdrum of everyday life where we face the reality of interacting with one another. Its a reminder that there are a lot of valleys between the hilltops. It is also a reminder that Christ's sermons had a whole lot more about getting on with one another than presenting doctrine.

    We place a lot of emphasis on getting the doctrines right, but the evidence of the Holy Spirit working in our lives is that we get right the glue that holds us together.

    By this shall all men know ...

    • Yes, I must agree. I personally have found it easier to work out the details of what I believe (studying to show myself approved) then to connect with and minister to those around me. I tend to be somewhat of an introvert, but this is not an excuse for reducing Christianity to a doctrinal decertation. Today I am learning to listen to people to determine who they are and what are their hurts and pains not just what they have to say about their understanding of doctrine. I am ashamed to say this has not been easy for me because for years I have been focused on making sure the doctrine has been grounded in the bible. I am not saying that it is wrong to have sound biblical understandings, but rather that I fall short of love thy neighbor because I have not learned to listed to his/her pains and needs with a ministering ear.

      It can be painful when you realize that your well meant study and Christian practice has somewhat missed the mark. In a quest for knowledge or to set the record straight you have left the naked without cloths, and the hungry without food, and the hurting without comfort. Many times the ones you have neglected are your own friends and family. And yet it is this realization that drives us to our knees and opens our ears to learn a new way of listening.

  3. "...Our prayers will take the form of a conversation with God as we would talk with a friend... a simplicity, a humility, meekness, and lowliness of heart..."

    How am I relating to Jesus? Is He distant or close? Do I share my daily challenges with Him? By the reaction of the person with whom we're sharing some intimacy, we discover true friendship.

    How many of us have true friends that we can say anything, and they will pair up with our emotions? A true friend does not judge and gets happy or sad, depending on our current state. Jesus does the same for me and you. He longs to be our best friend because He truly loves us.

  4. What has been your experience in waiting upon the Lord, and what has it taught you about trusting in Him and about faith in general?

    To answer no 3-discussion question from experience, husband and I waited for 7 years on the Lord for a child. In the moment of waiting was pain, strife, jest, mockery, ridicule, why me questions, etc... Have undergone all kinds of medical examinations, did series of surgeries, tried herbal medications even to the point of sacrificing animals to appease some sort of beings (God have mercy) .... Moment where faith was strong and there were moments, I had zero faith. Finally gave up on self and solely rely on GOD. This song was my strength and anthem (Through it all by Andrae Crouch) ... Now I'm a proud mother of a handsome boy (3 years) and pretty girl (she will be 1 tomorrow).
    God came through when it was 100% trust in him and 0% trust in self. Happy Sabbath preparation day saints.

    • Praise the Lord! He is faithful. You have the experience of Sarah and Abraham who waited for a promised son past the time of her childbearing age. It is a hard lesson for us to learn and even remember that faith is in God and not in what He provides or in our own abilities. Thank you for sharing the amazing power of God in your life. Serves as a reminder that God is the same yesterday today and always.

  5. I can appreciate Brother Ashton’s comment summing up this week’s lesson. How true your comment is.

    There can be a focus on doctrine that, if inappropriately applied, almost obliterates the purpose of the practical principles they represent. The Holy Spirit is with us and will empower us as He did the early church, but we must be engaged and involved as was Christ and the disciples.

    When I think about the fellowship of believers I belong to, I must ask myself, “Do i even know any of these people beyond facial recognition?”

    How can I love and disciple others as Christ did without interacting with them personally, without actually getting to know them? Can we be on one accord and unified without having any connection beyond the Divine hour on Sabbath?

  6. Since the message of the gospel (Christ in you the hope of glory) went out to the nations after Pentecost, and the Apostle Paul's commission to the gentiles, I wonder how many nations have not received the message yet!

    Any idea ?

  7. I do not want to sound crass - though what is the difference between the old and the new nature of a person who has been redeemed? Is not the difference found in that the power of the Spirit of God has reversed the living soul’s behavioral and decision making process which once was guided by the flesh? Humans can behave like savage beasts whithout guidance and restraints to subdue their fallen nature's base instincts.

    What then is the cause for the great ‘turn-around’ in a person’s nature? The answer to this question is found in the never compromising Love of the Creator for His creature. Its body He formed form the ground and gave it the breath of life, but the ability to recognize and commune with Him in an intelligent and emotional way came from His Spirit; He made us a living soul able to love Him in return – Matt.22:37-38.

    Accepting the creation account is so foundational to the believer’s life that the evidence when rejecting this Truth can easily be observed by assessing the trajectory of an unredeemed person’s life. Jesus Christ - our Redeemer and Teacher – reforms in us the ‘Child of God which loves its Father'. All who reject God’s spiritual design for man to be His 'child' will eventually be ‘consumed’ by the destructive powers of uninspired flesh which goes back to where it was taken from - the ground.

    John 6:43–45 - ”Stop grumbling among yourselves,” Jesus replied. No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him, and I will raise him up at the last day. It is written in the Prophets: ‘And they will all be taught by God.’ Everyone who has heard the Father and learned from Him comes to Me.”


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