The Promised Land Lost
There are times when we get going to church or get moving forward and we start plowing ahead and things start to become clearer and we start to see what God has been saying in our lives we connect with the Body (What god wants us to do) we become accountable (or do we) and then we begin to plow. Only thing is what happens is we begin to take hold of the vision and in essence without even realizing it like Moses we strike the rock. Little pretense for those who are reading but have not read the word of God. Moses takes the people from Egypt to rescue them from enslavement of Egypt, They grumble, see miracles, become is awe again, grumble again and wonder the desert for a long time come to the land of promise (milk and honey) and then God says to speak the rock and Moses strikes it. At ever level I remember saying wow that Moses what was he thinking!? Moses did not enter the land that was promised by God because of it. Seems severe...No?
A Little Transparency
I have struck the rock many times. I remember being under leadership that I mocked. I remember running small ministries without approval, doing worship times without any oversight and out reaches without the covering of the church. I remember that though they at the time seemed beneficial that very little fruit was gained or I could have had a lot more fruit. I feel a little like Oscar Schindler staring at the car realizing that I could have done so much more but not limited by the size of a vehicle or a plan but my own arrogance that I can separate from the church or God vision and still be successful or happy in that success. What is the success really if it is not God's will? If we are out of the will of leadership, God foremost and those God has put before us what are we doing? Rebellion? Shall we rebel against the people God has given us and expect God to be approving? Still today admittedly I do move in directions in ministry that I have not counseled in and I believe I have short changed the gifts God has given me because of it.
So like Moses. We are gifted. We are given a voice and even a flock. I read in the Holy word of God that we should not be presumptuous. That we should live a life of faith and of balance and accountability to God and those God has placed in our lives. This is the example given. Yes our hearts draw us sometimes away and come in the name of "Hearing God" and then all the sudden we are taken off course. I find it interesting that AFTER Jesus's baptism with John the Baptist that he was attacked by the devil in the desert. By the very thing that was going through his head. During the greatest times of revelation during those amazing Holy Spirit moments, during those times the Word of God is blowing off the pages and into your mind and burying itself in your heart is when you need to be on guard. This is not directly biblical but I know God has reasons for everything. The reason why Iron sharpens Iron and the reason why he wants us to gather more and more as the end approaches. It is because sometimes our hearts can be deceiving (actually most of the time :) ) and it is imperative that we connect to a Body and become accountable to it. It is imperative to the success of a ministry to be accountable. Otherwise what happens is people see what God has placed in your heart and during that greatest time when your ministry is moving forward the attacks will come and that Ministry with purpose, direction, compassion and drive will become nothing more than a Mystery Ministry fading and lost because the enemy efficiently took out a man who had no pillars to hold the building up he was delegated to uphold. Ministry is done in team. We need each other if we want to do great things. What greatness will we have accomplished if we have done it on our own and lost the vision in the process.
No Detours - The Scenery is not always the same
I have seen men and women and families come into a church or to a local body and get really excited they move forward get that word from God and because of their background or culture feel. Hey I have been called to minister to these people. Artists sometimes feel hey I have been called to minister to artists. Homeless to homeless and the widow to the widowed and though this is the way God sometimes works it is not ALWAYS how he works and when we presume we put ourselves in a difficult position because we presume sometimes even spiritually (I got a word) - (someone spoke over me) but sometimes we have forgotten the biblical pattern of the church and why it is there. People always want to go to a place to see the same thing they have always seen and when God puts them in a new place with a new plot and new scenery we want to go back to our old roots. This is how it happened with the Hebrew people who escaped from Egypt. They wanted to go back to the murk. Even the Godly things, the ministries and the churches or ideas from our past can be the Murk if we are not counseling with the Men and Women God has put in our lives.
What are we searching for?
The calling seems to have become the new idol for the Christian at times. The calling being a great thing should not keep us away from the greatest calling of all being Son and Daughters of our Heavenly father and Secondly to go out in the towns and Villages, Jobs, Schools. Homes. Neighbors, Countries, (I am being a bit liberal to help illustrate) and baptizing them in the name of the Father the Son and The Holy Spirit. If we have not grounded in this as our vision in Christ and our walk in life as the beloved as Paul calls us what are we searching for another ministry, a trip to a distant country to experience new things. a website, business card, name in lights, If we are doing the first thing. Keeping the main thing the main thing as a good saxophone playing friend of mine told me we will honor the things God has given us and even the place he has set us in then God will promote. When we put the calling or the church or even our feeling ahead of what God has given us we have not done what God has asked us and we have not been obedient.
WARNINGS OF WHEN THINGS HAVE GONE OFF TRACK and we are on (Spiritual) Attack
1. You have secluded yourself from other believers. (for long periods of time)
2. Your looking for ministry outside where God has placed you.
3. You are not communicating with those you usually share information to
4. You stop reading your bible or have ceased in praying as you used to.
5. Your frustration is growing but you have no resolve (confused).
6. You are trying to do things on your own.
7. You lean more towards spirituality to make decisions without referring to the Bible as your compass or others God has put in your life as balance.
8. Your ability to "tolerate" people has decreased and your are "tolerating them and not loving them"
9. You believe you have some special revelation that others "need" to hear or others have something you "have to be a part of"".
10. Your ministry is I centered "- (There is no ME, MY OR I in Ministry).
Lastly I mentioned about how Severe of a punishment it was for Moses to have struck the Rock and not enter the promised land. I think there are many reason why this happened one was disobedience to God but I think the other could also have been the fact that this man could no longer lead. As we know the Land of Milk and Honey awaited them. Moses was unable to enter. We defile the Land the beautiful land has given others as well as the Land god has given us when we are disobedient. After all it was the disobedience of Eve which destroyed that Eden. It was clear Moses anger, frustration what ever it was made him a direct danger it was seen as an act of rebellion and God did not want his people to loose out on the MINISTRY, the PROMISED LAND, THE CALLING he had for them by being led like this.
In order to lead we must be accountable, in order to stay on vision with what God has called us to we need to do this not only for the sake of ourselves but for the sake of those who are following. We think it is important to have a "BOARD": when it comes to businesses and when it comes to "NON-PROFITS" but somehow in a place where attacks are the greatest and rouge ones come quite often we believe this is not necessary. Go where God planted you where he placed you and stay accountable to the leaders and the people God has placed around you and you will reap a great harvest but never OWN that harvest because the Harvest (The people, the lives and the heart of those do not belong to you; they belong to God.