|Focus On Jesus
Jesus should be our focus -- not the things we do for Him -- not religious activity -- not people -- but the person of Jesus, the Lord and Christ.
1 CORINTHIANS 1:9 NIV
9 God, who has called you into fellowship with his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, is faithful.
Attending religious meetings should not be the focus of our lives. They are justified only if they help us to know God better, and equip us to do the will of God better.
Our giving should not be primarily motivated by the need to "get the Gospel out," or to meet the needs of people, but by our worship of Jesus and obedience to Him.
The focus of our lives should be to please Jesus.
COLOSSIANS 1:15-18 NKJ
15 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.
16 For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him.
17 And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist.
18 And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence.
Does Jesus have the preeminence in your schedule? In your heart? If not, why not?
The Bible teaches that we are to be faithful; but faithful to what: a religious system, an organization -- or, a Person? Are you serving Jesus -- or serving something else as His substitute?
Don't Serve The Great Commission
We do have a "Great Commission": to make disciples so we can preach the Gospel to everyone. But do not forget that God also gave us other commandments, all of which are important. And, remember that Jesus is the Lord of the harvest of humanity -- not us.
MATTHEW 9:37-38 NKJ
37 Then He said to His disciples, "The harvest truly is plentiful, but the laborers are few.
38 "Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest."
* God is the Lord of the harvest, so He is greater than the harvest.
* You and I are not the Lord of the harvest -- God is.
* God cares more for the harvest than we do, having given His life to purchase mankind.
* God knows more than we do. He is capable of planning and carrying out a successful harvest -- we are not.
* The harvest is God's, not ours.
* Therefore, we must focus on Him and let Him be Lord of all we do.
The reason Jesus told us to pray to the Lord of the harvest is not to convince God to do something, but so we will spend time in His presence praying, looking to Him, and quieting ourselves, so we will be ready to receive His guidance.
I heard a famous minister say his objective was to win as many people to Jesus as possible. Although I share that desire, I do not have the same objective.
My objective is to walk with God and obey Him. Although the result should logically be winning as many people to Jesus as possible -- at least for the whole Body of Christ for all time -- it may not be done the way I would plan.
I am saying that Jesus is Lord and knows more than I do. I should not take His command and think I know how to accomplish His will through my own efforts. I need to abide in Him, and let Him guide each step I take. I must not lean on my own understanding, but trust in Him with all my heart.
A Member Of The Body
Think what a difficult time you would have accomplishing anything if each member of your body did whatever it felt like -- instead of obeying orders from your brain. (Understanding and applying this truth to the Body of Christ is necessary.)
1 CORINTHIANS 12:12 NKJ
12 For as the body is one and has many members, but all the members of that one body, being many, are one body, so also is Christ.
EPHESIANS 1:22-23 NKJ
22 And He put all things under His feet, and gave Him to be head over all things to the church,
23 which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all.
Each one of us is only a member of the Body of Christ. We are not the Head -- Jesus is. He is responsible for, and capable of, coordinating all we do so our actions will accomplish His desired result. Each member of a body has a different function, but all are necessary for the body to function properly.
ROMANS 12:4 NKJ
4 For as we have many members in one body, but all the members do not have the same function,
Put God First
MATTHEW 22:36-40 NKJ
36 "Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?"
37 Jesus said to him, " `You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.'
38 "This is the first and great commandment.
39 "And the second is like it: `You shall love your neighbor as yourself.'
40 "On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets."
The most important command is to love God with all our being. Loving people, while important, is only secondary according to Jesus. In practice -- because God loves people -- loving Him will result in us loving people also.
When we get our priority backward -- putting people and their needs first -- we have missed God's plan, and will be relatively ineffective in really helping people -- compared to what we should have been if we had put God first.
I do not define myself as a Great Commission Christian, a Baptist, a Catholic, a Pentecostal, or any other brand. I am not against, or criticizing, any of these, but I am determined to follow Jesus and obey Him. I will not place anything other than Jesus as my highest priority.
My highest priority is God. I am a believer in Jesus Christ.
I am a follower, or disciple, of Jesus because I believe in Him.
Jesus Is Lord!