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A stronger you, a strong church
by beatrice ofwona
7/29/2010 / Christian Living
The Word of the Lord does not come in any established form or system. John the Baptist was the voice in the wilderness that preached the baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. He shook people's mentalities and thinking patterns. Just like John's was the voice that took the Word of God to the people, so too must you take the Gospel to others. John was born for the very purpose of preparing the way for Christ; likewise, what God has planned for your life shall come to pass.
Repentance means a full change; that the old is gone and the new you comes forth-2Cor 5:17. Thereafter, you must bear fruit that is worthy of this repentance. In John15:16 Christ says that he appointed you to bear fruit that will last therefore being born again comes with responsibility. What God has put in you is for His glory, however, you too must remember that He will not bless you beyond your use of these special gifts and talents. He will bless you to the extent that you are using these gifts for the glory of His name. When we glorify Him, others are drawn to Him. Since He dwells in you, when your works are seen by others, He is lifted and glorified. In this way you serve Him. The book of Malachi 3:18 talks of the distinction that will be seen between those who serve the Lord and those who do not.
In Luke 3:11, John asks the people to share what they have; the man with the two tunics should share with the one who has none and the one with food should do the same. The church is supposed to affect the social system in whichever way is necessary. Ministry does not run in isolation but certainly with all the other people around it. Neighbors who have not come to the knowledge of the Gospel may commit to do so once they observe your actions. As we serve people with our gifts, we make doors for communication and as a result our character is formed; we then gain credibility as children of salvation. In this way we are able to accomplish God's purpose for our lives but especially bring glory to Him.
Everybody likes to be associated with success and will converge where it seems to thrive. Whatever it is that you do, you should run it like a ministry, with commitment, humility and faithfulness so that others may come to you for advice and counsel. If it is wisdom that you lack, James 1:5 shares that you can ask God for it and He will give it to you generously. In Luke3:10-14 we see the crowds, the tax collectors and the soldiers coming to John for advice concerning how they should conduct themselves and run their affairs. Furthermore, if you put God ahead of everything, doors will open in the most difficult circumstances to aid your ministry.
But also remember that you should be ready to rebuke the wrongdoers because such is your first call-to bring people to the knowledge of the truth of the Gospel. In this, only God should be obeyed rather than man (Acts5:29). John the Baptist in Luke 3:19 rebuked Herod for his actions and was imprisoned for it. Likewise, your first obligation is to serve the Lord your God, no matter what.
If you deliberately purpose to strengthen your Christian walk, you will not only be a stronger Christian, but you will help build a stronger Christian church where others look to for direction.
May these words (sermons), from various men and women of God be a blessing to all.
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