Devotional Thought of the Day:
24 It makes me happy to be suffering for you now, and in my own body to make up all the hardships that still have to be undergone by Christ for the sake of his body, the Church, 25 of which I was made a servant with the responsibility towards you that God gave to me, that of completing God’s message, 26 the message which was a mystery hidden for generations and centuries and has now been revealed to his holy people. 27 It was God’s purpose to reveal to them how rich is the glory of this mystery among the gentiles; it is Christ among you, your hope of glory: 28 this is the Christ we are proclaiming, admonishing and instructing everyone in all wisdom, to make everyone perfect in Christ. 29 And it is for this reason that I labour, striving with his energy which works in me mightily. Colossians 1:24-29 (NJB)
These two aspects of mission are inseparable, as we see clearly from Jesus’ calling of his apostles (Mark 3: 13-19). Our being with the Lord will be genuine only if it leads to preaching, and our preaching will be authentic only if it derives from our being with Christ on the cross. (1)
I’ve always wondered about people who think that ministry will never include suffering, that somehow it will simply be a perfect and easy life.
Don’t they realize that there is going to be death involved? Don’t they realize that ministry means having to deal with death, and anxiety and dears, That those who minister will face their own brokenness, their we have to see ourselves healing, if we are going to frag to Him.
Ministry is service, it is work, it is the hard decisions to set everything aside, because we know that what God has in plan is to walk beside us the entire way. Paul will talk of of striving – that isn’t punching some kind of clock, meeting some minimal expectation.
But it isn’t striving on our own power, or for our own good. it is for the good of others, those who do not know this incredible news that we know. That not only about the forgiveness of sins, but the glory that is here, and will be fully revealed when God calls us home.
We can’t divide these things, as Pope Francis points out – knowing God’s love, living in His glory will lead to sharing that with others, and the more we are bringing people to the cross, the more we adore Him, The investment of time and treasure and talents becomes our norm, our life. A life that is being transformed by the Holy Spirit into one resembling and reflecting Christ to this broken world.
It’s what we do, it’s who we are…
Walking with the one crucified so that we could be with Him.
Gods blessings to you this weekend, whether your preaching is tomorrow before 10’s or hundreds or thousands, or whether it is today over a iced coffee….
For having been to the cross – you will preach!
(1) Pope Francis; Jorge M Bergoglio (2013-11-18). Open Mind, Faithful Heart (p. 59). The Crossroad Publishing Company. Kindle Edition.