Do nothing from rivalry or conceit, but in humility consider others more significant than yourselves. – Philippians 2:3 (ESV)
Last night, I got to make something right. For the past several years, a few churches in Oconee County have joined together to produce what we call Men’s United. It is a four-night event spread out over a couple of months. The leaders of these churches simply want the hearts of men to line up with the heart of God. We try to come together simply as Christians. We aren’t really representing churches or denominations . . . just God. I just joined in last year. Lifeline has hosted the event two times. The first thing I have learned from this group is Philippians 2:3.
The first MU meeting I went to was solid. The praise and worship band was simple, but they absolutely rocked out while they worshipped. I loved it. There weren’t very many people there, but the ones who were just exuded a love for God. I liked just being there around other men who didn’t mind professing a love for Jesus. I knew I wanted to buy in to being a part of this.
The second meeting I attended was even better. The praise and worship band was absolutely killer. It might have been one of the most professional sounding praise and worship bands I’ve ever heard. I just stood there and soaked it all in. I was the preacher for the night, so I preached my heart out, men responded, and it was another great night.
Lifeline Community Church was to host the next Men’s United. We were also to lead praise and worship for the night. God had been seriously impressing upon my heart to go really simple for worship. I really felt in my spirit that I was to just play simple, familiar songs on my acoustic and just allow the men’s voices to be heard. Well, I did the exact opposite. Something in me just wanted to “compete” with the other bands. I wanted to show how big we could go too. I ended up putting a complete band together and going big. Philippians 2:3 absolutely sums up what I did. As if to put an exclamation point on my disobedience, the speaker for the night at the end of the service asked, “Can someone come up here and just play Amazing Grace?”
Well, last night MU came once again to Lifeline. I was not going to get it wrong twice. I took my acoustic and played “Sweet Hour of Prayer.” After each section, men would come grab the microphone and pour out their hearts in prayer. I thought my heart was going to burst. I was so full of the Holy Spirit that I just did not ever want to let go. The night was absolutely wonderful. There was probably double the number of men as the previous year. God really moved and I just loved all of it.
I hate to think that my heart can still be so arrogant. Keeping the old nature in check can be quite difficult. I will give an account for what I did last year when I stand before the Lord. It will be made of wood, hay, or straw, and it will burn up on His holy altar. I shudder to think of how many things I have done for Him out of vain conceit. But, this whole ordeal has taught me a great lesson that I hope you can learn from as well. I have learned that for the rest of my days I want to serve Him because I love Him, not because I want others to look at me, and what I can do.
Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart as working for the Lord, not for men. – Colossians 3:23
If you are interested, come to our next Men’s United meeting at Whitestone Freedom Fellowship on Sunday, September 24, at 6:00.
Westminster, SC 29693