I met yesterday with a new friend and brother for coffee and conversation. During the course of our lengthy chat, Henry Blackaby’s name came up. The context was the importance of seeing what God is doing around you. I read Blackaby’s book Experiencing God more than twenty-five years ago. The impact it had on my thinking has had a lasting effect.
One principle that Blackaby lists is that God is always at work around you. This means that when we hear God calling us to action in some particular area or ministry we should look to see where He is already working and join Him there. Often we think we have to go out and recreate the wheel so to speak. Another necessary principle for experiencing the fullness of God in your life that Blackaby suggested was this gem – you cannot go with God and stay where you are. I wish I had a dollar for every time I have made that statement over these last twenty years. The gist of that statement is that when God calls you and reveals where He is already working it will most likely require some changes on your part. Thus, you cannot stay where you are in attitude, behavior, or perspective and come along side of God in His work.
These principles have taken on a fresh and vibrant meaning once again for me personally. As I have suggested in recent posts, God has graciously moved me into a new season of ministry. This has come about through a time of prayer, fasting, and seeking His counsel. I admit that this has caused me some consternation. After fifteen years as a senior pastor, and more than twenty-five years in church leadership roles, the idea that my message and teaching was somehow not aligned with God’s message gave me great pause. He assured me that although my message was His message He reserves the right to change the focus of the message as well as the manner it is delivered and the audience it is delivered to. I should have seen this coming but our Father delights in blessing His children so it came wrapped like a beautiful gift.
God has been at work all around Calvary Chapel of Lima and He is calling us to join Him. This call has been responded to in a number of different ways already. Recently we began broadcasting the Sunday morning messages on three local radio stations. Already we are seeing and hearing of fruit.
Now it appears that we are on the cusp of venturing into what is for us as a fellowship uncharted waters. I am thrilled at the depth of possibilities and see how God is desiring to reach people in these very difficult and troubling times through the opportunities He has presented to us. One area of focus will be teaching, equipping, and modeling what a true disciple is and does, and then sending disciples to repeat the process with other folks. Another area of focus will be the Lima community. More on that later.
I want to share some more with you about what a fellowship can do to fulfill a calling to being disciples and disciplining others. Read 2 Timothy 2:1-2 and see if you can identify some principles related to discipleship. I’ll share more on that passage in the next post.
God bless you all today and be assured of God’s great love for you His children.