To Spend And Be Spent

Some things are simply spent when you use them. Other things you can re-use. We would probably be wise to pay attention to the difference between the two.

Some things, when they are spent, are simply translated into other things, other resources, or other economies.

A couple of weeks ago, we took our huge family to Kansas City to see a play. In one sense, there was a lot of money spent that will not come back to us. But, in a much greater sense, those funds were translated into memories and priceless time together. Every dime was invested in relationships.

I have found myself on many occasions thinking about the example of Paul the Apostle as he wrote to the Corinthian believers, “I will most gladly spend and be spent for your souls.” (2 Cor. 12.15)

I have known people that modeled that sentiment, who continually spend their resources and their very lives pouring into, caring for, and looking after others. And, though I have tried to follow suit, I am still wrestling to overcome my own self-centeredness. Continue reading To Spend And Be Spent

Revision of Vision

Dwelling upon the many powerful moments this week, the second phrase to which our attention has been drawn is simply, “Enlarge the Vision.”

Every pastor has something of a vision of seeing lives transformed. But, when faced with the challenge to expand or enlarge that vision, it can seem like being accosted about our lack of faith. We want to see God work in amazing ways but don’t really believe that He would do that – not in us or in our circumstances.

I could put a pretty “holy” spin on that by telling you it’s because I recognize what an unworthy tool I am and that, for God to do anything at all in and through my life, it’s nothing short of miraculous…but that would only highlight the absurdity of thinking what God can do is in any possible way dependent upon me. Ridiculous, no?

I have a small vision (if any at all) because I have a small faith. Continue reading Revision of Vision

Born of Worship

I’ve been in meetings this week with representatives from hundreds of churches – new and old – from around the world. I have missed this meeting the last few years, but I am enamored with the things I see God doing among us.

Our brother that was chosen to lead this meeting has challenged us with three very simple, very powerful phrases. The first one, “Exalt in Worship,” I must confess at first seemed a little plain to me. But he pointed out that all that we ever hope to accomplish in the kingdom of God begins with acknowledging God for who He is…recognizing His worth…which is precisely the meaning of the word, “worship” – to see the worth of God.

As I have been reflecting on this idea, I realized that the most powerful things that God has done in my life have come out of a time of intimate experience of God’s presence. Continue reading Born of Worship