Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Purpose and Passion

Colossians 1:21-23

24 Now I rejoice in what was suffered for you, and I fill up in my flesh what is still lacking in regard to Christ's afflictions, for the sake of his body, which is the church. 25 I have become its servant by the commission God gave me to present to you the word of God in its fullness-- 26 the mystery that has been kept hidden for ages and generations, but is now disclosed to the saints. 27 To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.

28 We proclaim him, admonishing and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we may present everyone perfect in Christ. 29 To this end I labor, struggling with all his energy, which so powerfully works in me.
(Colossians 1:24-29 NIV)

If you were to go into the auditorium of our new building, walk up on the platform and feel across the center of that front wall, about three feet off the ground, you would find a horizontal beam. If you then (please don’t really do this) got an extremely sharp knife and sliced open the fabric over that beam, you would find Colossians 1:28-29 scribbled on that beam in black Sharpie (and bad handwriting).

The handwriting is mine, and the verse is one I consider my commission as the pastor of Spout Springs Church. I wanted it to be on the platform with me every time I speak there. Each weekend, my goal is to proclaim Jesus, both teaching the facts of His word and challenging (admonishing) people to follow what He says, so that in the end everyone is working toward the perfection God calls us to pursue.

It’s not easy. But I can do my best knowing that God is the One who actually does the heavy lifting, changing lives and moving people to be more like His Son.

Paul worked hard at it. He even suffered for it. (That’s the gist of verse 24, even if the particulars are a little hard to get our brains around.)

But here’s the question. What is your part in all this? If you’re part of the Spout Springs family (or even just God’s family, the church), what part do you think God wants you to play in getting this ‘mystery’ into the heads of the people around you? And are you called to pursue the goal with any less passion than the “paid clergy”?

3 comments:

Yvonne said...

I am called to be a disciple of God. I am to live each day as if Jesus is coming in the next minute and my words and actions are to reflect God. Therefore, reaching everyone around me. Unfortunately, I fall short of this often, but this is my goal and with the grace of God, I can try and reach it.

Amanda S. said...

My job on Sundays is to serve in a ministry to the best of my ability so that seekers who come to check out the church can focus completely on what is being taught. And also to worship with my whole self when I sit down in the service.

Joshua said...

Well my role in the church right now is to help "fill in the blanks". To be a disciple of the Word and witness what it has done in my life as much as possible. The strange thing is that no matter how much I do the Lord lets me know that it still isn't enough. Although I am driven to help develop people to serve and develop myself to be more Christ-like everyday. We all have our struggles and share with God and each other His divine accomplishments through us. So to say "my role" in the church is this or that contradicts my belief that I am just filling the role and using the spiritual gifts that the Lord has instilled in me before I was even born. TO SERVE! To sum it up, it is not about what I do at all but what I can do for others and what the Holy Spirit can do through me. That is how service and worship amazes me everyday. To see the Lord work through people and myself. To do things that there is no way I myself or others could do on there own. So I guess my role is whatever the Lord nudges me to do. To fill every opportunity to serve Him and my fellow Christians and to ask Him to open my eyes and ears to what He is trying to have me do today. I have found that if I do that the way that Jesus did that for us that I am truly at peace. I can close my eyes at night and say thank you Lord for using a sinner like me as rough and broken as the rest to do Your will, expand your kingdom and bring people back home to the Lord. Soften the hearts of those who I will cross paths with today to Your Word and open my eyes to cease every opportunity to introduce them or bring them back to Jesus.
Amen