The Good News
Bigger is better! Pull out all the stops! Do what no one else has done! Make it as exciting as possible to draw a crowd! Then the crew goes to work to do just that. Busyness ensues and overwhelms those “in charge” of the operation. The original purpose is lost in all the details, follow ups, phone calls, no shows. Plan B replaces plan A and is quickly followed by plan C. Then someone, usually a low on the totem pole worker bee, asks, “Now, why are we doing this?”
This happens on the work place, during family projects, and, painfully in God’s church. There, I wrote it…in print. Our humanness and leanings to world thinking takes over and the real mission and purpose gets lost in the busyness. Relationships are marred. Evil’s schemes to hinder the cause of Christ wins…for a little while. Then we are reminded of Jesus’ words, his model for pure, unadulterated ministry.
Mark 6, The Message
7-8 Jesus called the Twelve to him, and sent them out in pairs. He gave them authority and power to deal with the evil opposition. He sent them off with these instructions:
8-9 “Don’t think you need a lot of extra equipment for this. You are the equipment. No special appeals for funds. Keep it simple.
10 “And no luxury inns. Get a modest place and be content there until you leave.
11 “If you’re not welcomed, not listened to, quietly withdraw. Don’t make a scene. Shrug your shoulders and be on your way.”
12-13 Then they were on the road. They preached with joyful urgency that life can be radically different; right and left they sent the demons packing; they brought wellness to the sick, anointing their bodies, healing their spirits.
Are you having an ah-ha moment? I am. Evil does NOT win in the end for Jesus has already conquered it. Evil is not greater than the Spirit who lives in us. Evil is not powerful. In fact, evil has only one simple method to get at us and uses it over and over. The attacks come when we think we are more important than the mission, when we allow no time to get our “marching orders” from the Father each morning, when we fill every minute of our lives with details with inexhaustible to do lists, leaving no margin for rest and reflection. In other words, he hits harder when we are tireder. Believe me, I am one of them. I confess that openly. I repent and begin again to think more simply, moving with the unforced rhythms of His grace and mercy. Peace floods my soul when I do.
And guess what…Jesus doesn’t need you to accomplish His ministry, wherever that is, You need Him. He puts us in places that are hard enough to depend on Him, learn from Him and grow deeper in love with Him. We can help others only as HE helps us. Sometimes WE are the “others” that get help and are blessed. Mm.
Dear Heavenly Father, I pray my mistakes and confession helps someone else today who is struggling under a pile of details and self-expectations. You make the load lighter. We depend and trust in You alone. Thank you, dear Jesus for giving us these words of warning and teaching. Go with us. Bring us peace as we pour out our “stuff of life” at your feet. We are more than conquerors with You in control. In Jesus Name, Amen