Suicides, murders and every kind of horrific crime and perversion you can imagine are becoming more and more common. Whole families wiped out in murder/suicides. Then I started to get angry because we, as believers and citizens of the Kingdom of God, have the answer for the chaos and misery in this world but we aren't being walking, talking examples of an abundant Kingdom life! We keep our light hidden. You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden. No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father. Matthew 5:14-16 NLT
Those who don't yet know Jesus as their Savior have a hole in their soul that needs to be filled by the Holy Spirit. It yearns for God but they try to fill that hunger with everything the world can give them: food, alcohol, drugs, sex, pain, power and all manner of perversion; trying to quench the hunger in their soul for God. Satan throws them lots of substitutes. He has an open field because too many believers have put themselves in a big protective "bubble" so they don't get any of the world on them. They are entertained in church rather than being discipled to go out into the world and do the work of the Kingdom. They pride themselves in only listening to Christian music, going to Christian events and only associating with other Christians. But what good are we if we never live among the rest of the world and show by example what life in the Kingdom can be! In order to do that, you must have been discipled and full of the Word so you don't slide back into your sinful past.
Now these are the gifts Christ gave to the church: the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, and the pastors and teachers. Their responsibility is to equip God’s people to do His work and build up the body of Christ. This will continue until we all come to such unity in our faith and knowledge of God’s Son that we will be mature in the Lord, measuring up to the full and complete standard of Christ.
Then we will no longer be immature like children. We won’t be tossed and blown about by every wind of new teaching. We will not be influenced when people try to trick us with lies so clever they sound like the truth. Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of His body, the church. He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love. Ephesians 4:11-16 NLT
Ministry isn't just handing out tracts. That isn't very effective today. The world has seen too much sin and hypocrisy in the church and in Christians. They don't see anything they want there! They have to see God's Word operating in our daily lives. Every person you interact with should see Jesus in you. By the way, this includes when you are driving or dealing with service people! They should see the fruits of the Spirit blossoming in you, a sweet aroma of peace, joy and self-control (this seems to be a hard one for most!). But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Galatians 5:22-23 NLT
Please hear my heart on this. The world without Jesus is miserable. I don't care what face they put on in public. They can have money and fame and still be miserable. There have been times when the Holy Spirit led me to some hard rock music videos and really opened my mind and heart. I listened to the songs and the words and cried. Hard to believe, I know! But it showed me their mindsets and the pain, chaos and despair they felt. One of the groups was Linkin Park. They have millions of fans, people practically worship them. Not long after I saw those videos, the lead singer/songwriter, Chester Bennington commit suicide. Tragic. He seemed to have everything the devil could offer him and he was still in such despair that he killed himself. The Holy Spirit showed me this so clearly and I felt the grief that God must feel when one is lost for eternity. People cut themselves, take drugs and get drunk, all to ease their emotional pain. They need to see the peace and joy of Jesus in you.
Yes, it is time to get serious. Time to stop needing to be entertained at church. Time to represent your King everywhere you go out in the world. Time to stop pretending to be like the world. Time to be Jesus everywhere you go--His hands and His voice. Time to cultivate those fruits of the Spirit seeds that are planted in your spirit. Time to stop living in that Christian bubble and get out among the people who are dying and going to Hell. Can you imagine what your city would be like if all the citizens of the Kingdom of God represented the Kingdom everywhere they went? You want to change your city? Want to win it for the Kingdom of God? Change yourself and get out there among them! Oh, and please don't be religious and "churchy" around them. Be real...be sincere!
I have given them Your word. And the world hates them because they do not belong to the world, just as I do not belong to the world. I’m not asking you to take them out of the world, but to keep them safe from the evil one. They do not belong to this world any more than I do. Make them holy by your truth; teach them Your word, which is Truth. Just as you sent Me into the world, I am sending them into the world. And I give myself as a holy sacrifice for them so they can be made holy by your truth.
I am praying not only for these disciples but also for all who will ever believe in me through their message. I pray that they will all be one, just as you and I are one—as you are in Me, Father, and I am in you. And may they be in us so that the world will believe you sent Me.
I have given them the glory you gave Me, so they may be one as we are one. I am in them and you are in Me. May they experience such perfect unity that the world will know that you sent Me and that you love them as much as you love me. John 17:14-23 NLT
Be a Kingdom light shining in the darkness,
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