Enjoying the Journey
As we grow older (and hopefully wiser!) we begin to discern more about what is most important, what is more important, what is less important, and what is not important at all! One of the most difficult things to do is to eliminate good things so that you can emphasize better ones.
Recently I wrote down seven things in my journal that God is showing me are important to Him. In the end this is what really matters – divinely ordered priorities.
- Be more concerned with prayer than planning. I am a planner by nature. Yet far too often I find myself making my plans and then asking God to bless them. As we pray we begin to find what He wants done. Prayer is the greatest preparation of all! Pray before you plan, as you plan, and over your plan. Do not be like Joshua and Israel who failed to seek counsel from the Lord (Joshua 9:14). His plan is always best.
- Be more concerned with the Spirit’s promptings than your organizational ability. While organization is fine we must always remember that Christ’s church is not an organization – it is an organism! A living, breathing body. It requires the life of the Spirit. The only way to organize an organism is to dissect it and that kills it! The Holy Spirit like wind blows where He wants (John 3:8). You cannot control Him; you can only follow His promptings.
- Be more concerned with adherence to Scripture than relevance to society. A man may be relevant and not right. God’s Word is always right and always relevant. Depend on the sufficiency of Scripture to guide and guard you. Read more Scripture than you do “ministry philosophy” and “ministry practice” books. Follow eternal truth and not current trends.
- Be more concerned with bringing individuals to Christ than building a big program. People get so enamored with size and impressed with numbers. Remember that Satan knows how to get a crowd too! Forget the mega-mentality. The measure of a church is not the size of the crowd but how big Christ is in those people. Remember that Philip was called to leave a large revival in Samaria to win one Ethiopian to Jesus…but that opened the door for the gospel in Africa.
- Be more concerned with guiding your family than gaining a following. Who cares how many “followers” you have or how big your “tribe” is if you fail to minister to your first flock! Each of us will stand before God for what we did in our own home. Refuse to give more energy to virtual connections than to real relationships.
- Be more concerned with worship than work. The best work grows out of worship. Learn to love and adore Christ, to enjoy Him and praise Him. In His presence the work is clearer and out of the overflow of your walk with Him others will come to know Him.
- Be more concerned with goodness than greatness. There is only One who is truly great and that is our God (Deuteronomy 32:3). Our aim should not be to build a name but to grow in our likeness to Him. Spurgeon wrote in The Soulwinner, “In our beginnings we are too fine to be fit…too great to be good.” Seek to be holy and our great God will make you usable.
No doubt He has much more to teach me and I have much more to learn. What are you learning right now that is more important in light of eternity?