“For the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God.” – Romans 8:19
“He said to them, “Go into all the world, and proclaim the Good News to the whole creation.” Mark 16:15
Second Timothy 4:5 says ” But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry.”
Here, the Apostle Paul gives encouragement and instruction in a continuum letter to his young protégé Timotheus. In the verse above Paul admonishes the young bishop of Ephesus to have ministerial awareness, perseverance, diligence in outreach and to leave no vacancies in his responsibilities to his calling.
In many cases in today’s Christian assembly ministry there is proficiency in the in-house infrastructure and administration. In many places of such there are an array of aspects to the ministry that make it exciting and a vibrant atmosphere during the corporate worship session. With this being the case of some ministries, and ought to be applauded, it is still yet more that is necessary before the full proof of a ministry has been accomplished.
In the secular arena when one speaks of “FULL PROOF” it is readily assumed that the person is referring to some no-holds-barred alcoholic beverage (100% alcohol content). In such a case, when someone wants “full proof” they are interested in something that will bring about the most potent intoxicated state achievable byway of an alcoholic drink.
A person looking for FULL PROOF isn’t practicing a hobby but a way of life! This should be the longing and desire of those in Christian ministry as pertaining to the proving of their ministry, as Paul communicated to Timothy, to make FULL PROOF of their ministry!
I love a roaring preached word of GOD and the soul soothing of an angelic sounding choir but if a community remains untouched while all this persist a ministry can in no wise consider itself to have carried out every facet of its ministerial/Kingdom duties.
The world waxes worse and worse and inquity abounds as the church becomes more and more introverted. Does your ministry feed the hungry? Does it help keep the community clean where it is located? Does it offer literacy programs or tutoring services? Does it create alternative activities for the community youth? Does your ministry attempt to deal with the condition of the people in the community from without the pulpit?
The percentage of a ministry’s effectiveness and to know if it is full proof or no is not found from simply looking within its sound infrastructure and elaborate administration but by the measure of its noticeable impact in the community where it stands and eventually globally! 25%, 55%, 79% or FULL PROOF? Where do you stand?
The Old Testament Biblical patriarch Joseph could not be freed from his bondage or brought out of the dungeon until he began to help others realize their dreams instead of just realizing his own.
For the coat of many colors was not for the benefit of himself as much as it was a benefit for those who would look upon it same as a peacock whose feathers are glorious is arrayed as such for those who behold its splendour.
For those who beheld the coat given to Joseph by his father were beholding multi dimensional observances before their very eyes, seeing things from unusual perspectives beyond status quo of which state is embedded in each of us waiting to be awakened, an innate quality to be marvelous.
Though the physical coat was left behind in his plighted journey it was the insignia of his calling, to cause others to realize their call (dream) rather than muse over his own position of favor.
The whole Christian journey is to point others to JESUS CHRIST that they might relish in the experience of receiving Him that they should “BECOME” (John 1:12).
Praise the LORD for your salvation! Yes! Be excited for the expectation of what He has for you in your life!
Dream a little dream, sure! But use it to help others realize theirs.
(reference Genesis chapter 40)
Don’t embitter, oppress, spoil, cripple nor attempt to live vicariously through them, but simply love your sons. Desire for them to become according to all they were designed to be in GOD’s plan.
“When righteous men do rejoice, there is great glory: but when the wicked rise, men hide themselves” Proverbs 28:12
When you want greater for your children than you had, you will live the best example before them to get them there.
— Pastor Michael Otano
Christian Revival Center, Merrillville, IN
Remember back in the day when every gas station (filling station) was a “Full-service” gas station?
Although the full-service gas station is not totally extinct, most people would be surprised to know that some still exist in some cities (mostly well to do communities) across the United States. The convenience of pulling up to the gas station and having the option to sit in your car, use the service station’s restroom or go inside for a cold soda while your automobile is fueled to your desired specs makes any automobile operator feel pampered. Along with pumping fuel, also these stations were a one stop automotive care center offering assistance to customers for mechanical repairs.
The demand for lower gas prices pushed more business to the “self-serve” pump which made the “Full-service” pumps obsolete in many markets, particularly in inner-city communities and lower income areas. In most places, the “Full-service” filling stations are a relic of the far away past!
In today’s Christian house of worship we can just about ask the same question; Remember when the Christian house of worship use to predominantly be a place of service in the various cities where they are located across our great land?
“Once upon a time”, as I’ve heard many people reminisce, the house of prayer was readily accepted as a place where people would expect to find solutions for their lives, or at least this was the perception.
Today, particularly in lower income up toward middle class communities, there is less evidence in communities where churches are present, other than a building structure, of there being believers serving those communities leaving onlookers questioning if there is in fact any SERVING going on at all.
There are more modern advancements integrated into the worship gathering today than ever before with state-of-the-art lighting, sound, projector screens and even pyro-techniques as a way to enhance visual effects.
With all of the sensationalism, including some of the greatest musicians and praise & worship leaders ever on display before a ready audience of parishioners, there is still a lack of evidence of the anointing that seems to exist inside the building once the community is explored roundabout outside of the four walls of the Christian house of prayer.
Could it be that the corporate worship experience has been used as a trick of the enemy [Satan] as a type of sedation tool for much of the Body of CHRIST? Or should I ask, has the quest of looking for a “high-time in the LORD” replaced actual service?
Many churches function under an operation of planning the meeting to plan the next time to gather for corporate worship, so much so until going from house to house (Acts 2:46) becomes the objective rather than actual “Kingdom building” (as opposed to “k”ingdom building- building personal legacies). Today we have Usher board meetings, Mother’s board meetings, Deacon board meetings, Pastor’s Appreciations, Church Conventions/Anniversaries, Youth People’s meetings, prayer meetings, mid-week meetings, etc. All these gatherings we clamor for but our streets and communities scarcely see our “Full-service“!
Whereas the full-service gas stations have become scarce due to lack of demand, the full-service Body of CHRIST is and has always been in constant demand.
” The harvest truly is great, but the laborers are few: pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth laborers into his harvest.” (Luke 10:2 KJV)
After reading this post take a moment to assess the local Christian assembly you fellowship with in juxtaposition to the community the assembly is in:
1. Is there evidence in your assembly’s community that the group of believers are present there?
2. What are some measures or activities your assembly can engage in to impact the community for CHRIST’s sake?
3. Does your assembly anonymously survey visitors to ask what inspired them most about their worship experience during their visit?
I hope the many Christian leaders who view this blog post will note areas of improvement where they hope to be more effective and if there are steps that have helped your assembly, please share in the comments below.
There has been much controversy surrounding the issue of what Paul was getting at concerning a woman’s hair in the book of I Corinthians Chapter 11 which reads:
“1Co 11:10 For this cause ought the woman to have power on her head because of the angels.”
The word that Paul is using in the Greek means “mastery” or “delegated influence”. It is a choice on the woman’s part to possess and seize an opportunity to have influence by way of displaying DISTINCTION.
Below I’d like to explore and share in more detail concerning this matter:
On the topic of HAIR in I Corinthians 11:10 the scripture is aiming to make a distinction both in roles and in distinguishing strength sources found in the manner in which ministry is illustrated. Unless we make a distinction between the man and woman, whereas in today’s society the lines are blurred or at least attempted, we lose touch with what makes a woman unique and what makes a man unique and lose touch with their purpose and function.
The most powerful tool, or rather impact, a woman has in a relationship is her INFLUENCE. If it is viewed that somehow this is not important, whereas sometimes it is inadvertently overlooked in the mere pursuit to survive, because of women emulating men then women lose their ultimate place of effectiveness, INFLUENCE.
Sure, women can compete and in some arenas excel with or beyond their male counterparts but a world with either men only or women only is a wrecked place.
So then, a woman not being ashamed to bare her distinction (as opposed to bearing her distinction as a burden) is truly powerful indeed same as if we openly show CHRIST as opposed to trying to assimilate the World are we then truly powerful. Therefore it is shown in our distinction rather living a separated (sanctified) life in CHRIST the true power of our testimony and acceptable glory unto the LORD is revealed. Whereas many see it a matter of awkwardness or labor in displaying a dissimilar lifestyle from that of the World it is necessary to do so that we may remain identifiable from those who are unregenerated in order that we might win some to JESUS CHRIST our LORD. Our strength is not like that of the World in bold statements through fashion, faddism (short-lived) or cultural idioms (embedded in ethnic identity) but exemplified in our resemblance to the Word of GOD in all of our dimensional aspects.
Just as a woman should be as womanly as she possibly can and in that she has influence to elevate her man among men [Proverbs 31:23] (same as a man should be manly according to the condemnation listed in I Corinthians 6:9 for a man being otherwise) a believer should “Look” like a believer as much as we possibly can so that no one gets the wrong idea of which side we stand and that we might delight our GOD.
It is found no clearer than as stated by the Apostle Peter in his First Epistle Chapter 2 and verse 9:
“ But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:”
Sadly, the strivings against the preserving of these distinctions in the natural is indicative of the strivings against the most scared of all eccentricity in the spirit realm. So do you choose to bare forth HIS Glory or do you bear it with contentions? Are you making the line as conspicuous as possible or are you equivocal and difficult to read? Make a Distinction! Show forth HIS Praise!