Here I am
But Moses said “Pardon your servant, Lord. Please send someone else.” — Exodus 4:13
I have had a rough couple of weeks. I have been on a bit of a roller coaster ride as far as my job (teaching job) has been concerned. I’m finding out the hard way that being a pastor is a lot tougher than it looks. On top of all that, I feel like 40 is forgetting that I still get to do 39 here in a month or so.
I just finished a sermon series on fighting temptation. You can check out the series at http://www.lifelinecc.com if you like. The last part of that series dealt with the sin of giving up. Satan told Jesus that he would just give him all the kingdoms of the world if He would just bow down and worship him. While listening and critiquing my own sermon, I realized what a temptation this has become in my own life. I am being bombarded with thoughts of giving up . . . not necessarily on God, just on the fight. Let me explain.
Satan offered Jesus victory without a fight. No cross, no self-denial, just ease. I believe the majority of today’s Christians have bought in to the lie that we can have the world as well as the promise of Heaven. It is nearly impossible to tell the difference between a Christian and a non-Christian in everyday living. I see Christian teachers that NEVER leave their seat. I see Christian workers do as little as possible at work. Christian students seem to have no interest in setting a new standard for excellence in the classroom. Basically, Christians make no effort to pursue excellence and separate themselves from worldly people. Christians, especially in the U.S., want maximum reward for minimum effort, just like everyone else. There are many Christians who NEVER talk about their faith with other people. They believe they are simply “good to go”, therefore let’s just kick back, enjoy church, and wait on the rapture. In the meantime, Muslims militantly prepare and arm the next generation to carry on their faith. Many Christians have succumbed to the last temptation.
My greatest temptation right now is to just quit fighting. I mean, why should I keep trying to win students who really don’t want to be there and really couldn’t care less? How many times do I have to endure a lazy kid’s mama blasting me and threatening to “have my job” if I don’t just basically give him or her a good grade? How dare I teach responsibility! Is it really a fight worth fighting?
I think it is.
Even as much as I love teaching and preaching the Word of God, it is a fight. Why should I keep on studying? Why should I keep on asking God for fresh revelation and fresh insight? I mean, does the world really need another preacher? Does the world really need another WMD?
I think it does.
My life was changed over the course of time through solid preachers who taught the Word of God and lived the very life it teaches. When I saw them live a Godly life and saw the results of living this way, I wanted to live it myself. Their lives were proof that it could be done. There was something in them that nobody else had that I wanted. Occasionally, people will tell me that they are growing in the Lord because He is speaking through WMD or through the teachings at Lifeline Community Church. No wonder the devil simply wants me to stop. No wonder he wants me to say “Hey, I’m saved, why not just enjoy hanging out with other church people and wait to go to Heaven.” This would render me ineffective, exactly what the enemy wants.
Where are you? Are you fighting? Are you winning? Do you have a burning desire to win the lost? Do you have a desire to work like you are working for Him no matter what it is that you do?
As I write this, my appetite for Him increases. I realize that I have missed Him.
I love Him.
Don’t people fight for those they love?
If he comes suddenly, do not let him find you sleeping. — Mark 13:36
Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I. Send me!” — Isaiah 6:8