What am I to do now?

In Disciples are Made Not Born, Walter Henrichsen states, “The type of person God uses is someone who is surrendered to Jesus and will adopt the same objective life that God sets forth in the Scriptures.” What is it that objective?

Matthew 28:18-20 TPT Then Jesus came close to them and said, “All authority of the universe has been given to me. Now go in my authority and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. And teach them to faithfully follow all that I have commanded you. And never forget that I am with you every day, even to the completion of this age.

Spreading the Gospel, making disciples, that is our objective. They are not my disciples, they are His disciples. How can I teach a people if I do not have His presence? This can be overwhelming if you think that you do not have it in you, but you do. If you are a born again believer of the Son of God, then you have been given everything you need.

How can I teach a people if I do not have His presence?

John 15:5 (Amplified) I am the Vine; you are the branches. The one who remains in Me and I in him bears much fruit, for (otherwise) apart from Me (that is, cut off from vital union with Me) you can do nothing.

It was not until nine years ago that I was able to lead someone in the prayer to receive Jesus as their Lord and Savior, for the first time. I took all the classes before then, I had attended seminary, I had memorized scripture…but I was all in my head about what and how to do it. It took me telling about who Jesus was to me and the transformation that I allowed Him to do in me, and most importantly the leading of the Holy Spirit. There have been times when I talked to someone and they did not receive Him and that it okay because I planted a seed. There have been times that I was in total shock that they said yes, I had to make sure they knew what they were saying yes to.

Oscar Thompson wrote, “A person can never lead another closer to the Lord than he or she already is. Evangelism must flow from a life that’s deeply in love with the Lord.”

I taught a year of pre-k in my day care, years ago. Just one year, as I was restructuring how I wanted things done. In that year I taught the kids about the love of God (along with the basics of phonics, manipulative play, shapes, etc.). Years later I met one of my former parents at the library. She told me that her daughter was able to tell her of God’s love during a time of struggle in her own life. She said the words daughter speak helped her fully believe and know that God knew where she was. I would have other parents tell me that their kids would speak of me as, “Pastor Amanda loves God.” It would bring a tear to my eye that through their children I was impacting homes for Christ.

Where ever we are we can make an impact for Christ. Do your grocery clerks know the love you have for God? You do not have to preach at them for them to know. They know by your actions and your words of kindness. Do you talk to them as they ring you up? How about the waiter/waitress at your table? What about your colleagues on your job? Or most importantly the children in your home?

Matthew 5:14-16 (TPT) Your lives light up the world. Let others see your light from a distance, for how can you hide a city that stands on a hilltop? And who would light a lamp and then hide it in an obscure place? Instead, it’s placed where everyone in the house can benefit from its light. So don’t hide your light! Let it shine brightly before others, so that the commendable things that you do will shine as light upon them, and then they will give their praise to your Father in heaven.

I can honestly say that I am living my best life right now. Does that mean that I do not have struggles? No, it does not. Why do I say it is my best life? I know that He is with me. Apart from Him I do not want to be. I have grown in my relationship with God that the glow is starting to show. I cannot and should not keep that to myself. You should not either. It is not about what He can give me, or that He saved me from hell, it is that He is with me in the here and now. That is the best life. I pray that this gives you hope and courage to let your light shine bright and to go out and make disciples.

What is your heart’s cry?

About a year ago I did this study called Worship and Witness: Becoming a Great Commission Worshiper. Evangelism is hard, when you try to do it on your own. However, Jesus told us to go out and make disciples. How can we do that if we do not have a personal relationship with Jesus?

As a believer and follower of Christ our hearts cry should be to share the Gospel of Jesus. We should know the life, death and resurrection of Christ. We should fall so much in love with Him that all of our actions glorify His name. How can we do this if we do not have a foundation to build on? This is why personal study of the Word is so very important, but not without ways to implement it.

1 Peter 4:7-10 NKJV: “But the end of all things is at hand; therefore be serious and watchful with your prayers. And above all things have fervent love for one another, for “love will cover a multitude of sins.” Be hospitable to one another without grumbling. As each one has received a give, minister to one another, as good stewards of the manifold of grace of God.” (emphasis added by me)

The statement “love will cover a multitude of sins.” I love this because it is calling us to see each other as He sees us. When we accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior our past should be our past and we should never know our brothers and sisters in Christ by their past mistakes. Our job is to encourage each other. When they are on the mountain top and I am in the wilderness, I am cheering them on, because I know I will not be far behind them. When they are in the valley and I am on the mountain top, I should not shame them but encourage them in the Word. Ultimately, it is our choice on how we perceive our current situations.

To continue on with what Peter is encouraging us to do I will continue in the Passion Translation: v. 11: “For example, if you have a speaking gift, speak as though God were speaking his words through you. If you have the gift of serving, do it passionately with the strength God gives you, so that in everything God alone will be glorified through Jesus Christ. For to him belong the power and the glory forever throughout all ages! Amen.”

There is something that we could all be doing to serve in the Body of Christ. Without our willingness to serve we may be missing an opportunity to make disciples. If we look at it in that perspective, we may be more willing to step out in faith and put His Word into action.

Peter was not a perfect man, and sometimes I can relate to him. Most of the first four books of the New Testament verifies that. Peter was known and will forever be known as the man that denied Christ three times. However, he was still used by God. In John 21 we see that Jesus took special care to restore their relationship, then he opens his mouth again and wants to know what about John and what Jesus is going to do with him. Are we not like that sometimes?

Somewhere along the way, after Acts 1:8, Jesus tells them: “But I promise you this – the Holy Spirit will come upon you and you will be seized with power. And you will be my messengers to Jerusalem, throughout Judea, and the distant provinces – even to the remotest places on earth! (TPT)” This is what had to happen in Peter for him to mature. This is what made the difference of Peter of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John and the Peter we see in Acts and First and Second Peter.

Peter urges us to serve, but do it without grumbling and complaining. Read what he writes in 1 Peter 5:1-3, ” I have a special concern for you church leaders. I know what it’s like to be a leader, in on Christ’s sufferings as well as the coming glory. Here’s my concern: that you care for God’s flock with all the diligence of a shepherd. Not because you have to, but because you want to please God. Not calculating what you can get out of it, but acting spontaneously. Not bossily telling others what to do, but tenderly showing them the way. (MSG)” What a difference in this man! His heart’s cry was to live a life that glorified Christ. He wanted to make Him famous! It was no longer about Peter. He did not let his past mistakes dictate his desire for Christ.

He did not let his past mistakes dictate his desire for Christ.

1 Corinthians 2:9 (NKJV) But as it is written: “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him.”

There has been a spiritual shift going on. What we are seeing in the natural is only of tremor of what is going on in the spiritual realm. What is your heart crying out for during this time? Is it to draw closer to Christ? Is it for revival in the church? For me it has for both of these, but it is also for the fullness of the Gospel of Jesus to be taught. Do not let your love for Christ just be lip service. Seek after His heart. Seek His face. Tell others about Jesus, the man who knows all about you, and still paid the price for you. He did not give up on Peter when he made mistakes and he has not given up on you.