Thursday, May 5, 2011

You Are Meant For Greater Things Than This

I have said it before and I will say it again until the Spirit tells me to stop: the world wants to see Jesus. The problem is not in their desire but in our inability to deliver. We have all the words but there are very few who are bold enough or even courageous enough to allow Jesus' glory to shine through them. Kind acts, demonstrating sacrificial love is something we must do every day but we have been given a complete package to live so that the world would know Jesus. It is like we are willing to trust God with part of the truth but not the whole thing. We are listening to the words Jesus spoke that are in our own ability to live and we are totally ignoring the others that require the Spirit in us to do. We are robbing Jesus of his glory.

Continuing with Jesus' response to Philip in John 14 we find the answer to living a powerful, God glorifying life in this dark and lost world. It is all about our relationship with Jesus, which he tells us must be the same as what he had at that moment with the Father. Remember, Jesus did not do anything while he was with us by his divine power. He had set all of that aside to become one of us. What he did was done by the Holy Spirit in the same manner that is now available to us. He set the example for us. In this same sense he taught us the relationship we must have with him:

Don’t you believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in me? The words I say to you are not just my own. Rather, it is the Father, living in me, who is doing his work. (John 14:10)

This is the most important thing to take note of right here. The source of spiritual authority and power is the Father in Jesus. This is a foreshadowing of the relationship we are to have with Jesus who is our source of spiritual authority and power. Later Jesus will pray:

“My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me." (John 17:20-21)

We are to have this relationship with Jesus which allows the power and authority to exist in us. The purpose is that the world may believe. When they see the glory of Jesus in us they are given the evidence they demand so they can make a choice. But right now we are not allowing that glory to flow. We are holding back on the world. They say to us, "Show us Jesus". Jesus is saying, "Show them my glory". And we are sitting on our hands of faith, afraid that we will look foolish. Yet we claim to be followers of Jesus, a people of faith.

The world wants evidence and Jesus says that we can give them evidence. There is proof that Jesus is in us, he said so himself:

Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the miracles themselves. (John 14:11)

The miracles are the evidence but we have developed people into thinking that miracles were only for a time, a certain age of the Church. The Word says no such thing. We are to take our instructions from the Lord and he made it clear that by the Spirit we would become one with him; Jesus in us and us in Jesus. The same relationship he had with the Father. By this same Spirit in us miracles are done through us so that Jesus can glorify the Father and the world can see. Read his words carefully and do not dismiss them; they come from Jesus:

I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing. He will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Son may bring glory to the Father. (John 14:12-13)

You have faith to believe but do you have faith to live? Jesus desires to glorify the Father through us by having us live a powerful, miracle filled life for him. Did I say this? Did I make this up? These are the words of Jesus and it is what has been missing from the Church. Through Jesus Christ we have a powerful witness that the world longs to see and that Jesus longs to reveal. The problem is our unbelief.

The whole secret is having that relationship of oneness with Jesus as he had with the Father. Jesus gave us a three year example of how we could live our life to glorify the Father. The disciples went on to live such a life. Don't think that what we read in Acts is all that was happening. It is only a small record of the birth and growth of the Church. Incredible things were happening as they should be happening now. In the last days God is pouring out his Spirit, his power upon those who will receive and live for his glory. Our eyes are being opened more to help us understand and to walk in the truth. This is not an interpretation of Jesus' words but instead they are his words:

You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it. (John 14:14)

This takes relationship. Not a five minute devotional but a day long walking in Jesus. It requires a "setting aside" time to keep the relationship strong and vivid. Jesus spent time with the Father all day but he set aside private time with him in the morning and evening. We fill our life with busyness, noise, tons of music, so much so that the voice he speaks to us with gets drowned out. We must develop this oneness with Jesus, our sensitivity to him in order for us to allow him to work through us. Ask him to call to you so that you can respond to him. Listen and do what he tells you to do.

It's not about us. It's about Jesus Christ and the glory he wants to reveal. It's about a lost world that is looking for evidence that God is real, that his love is real. They are given the miracles where words fail to move them. We can't argue with this, there is too much evidence in the instructions and example that has been set before us. There are no "if's" with Jesus, only promises. There are no "maybe's", only a desire that we would lift him up so the world would see. Haven't you felt weak in your witness, ineffective, like no one is listening? There is power in Jesus Christ and he wants you to reveal that to the world. Be bold. Be Courageous. Step out in faith. To God be the glory.

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