Bible verses to build your life on
Jesus said: “… whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock…” ~ Matthew 7:24
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A passionate plea to ministers (and those in training)
My dear friends and brethren, may I share something that has been on my heart? The problem today, with pastors, is not that they don't have enough information, but we have too many who fake it every week - repeating the same thing over and over. Why? Because that's all they know - their faith appears vain, because it is empty.
The pastors who do not know Christ cannot explain what genuine discipleship looks like in the day-to-day details, because they have never been there. They cannot explain what it feels like to die to old idolatries, to old habits, to old addictions, to old bad relationships, to go through the rigors of reckoning ourselves dead to what this perverted culture calls entertainment. So, what do they teach when they get up on Sunday morning to speak? 'You're doing all right - just keep getting better...'
Only those who are genuinely saved, and are daily learning through the - I'm dead to my self-centered wants and earthly-comfortable ambitions, and fully committed and passionately growing to become like Christ, day-by-day ~ Only they have a message worth preaching, because only they have a genuine relationship with the real True God in Heaven, and know that He will carry us and lead us through each and everything He arranges for us. Only they can describe the many year process it takes to grow to a strong maturity that can boldly preach against sin - warning those who pass by not to do that and can describe for them the problems ahead if they don't heed the warnings.
May I also say something to those of my dear friends who wish to go into the ministry? To anyone who desires to go into the ministry, if you are going to do it God's way, I can tell you firsthand: it is going to be one of the hardest choices you will have to continually make - day-by-day, for the costs and standard is high for God's faithful servants. For comfort, look at Paul or John the Baptizer, or for that matter - our Master, Jesus the Christ. Easy life? No. Many hardships? Yes. Misunderstandings? Yes? Mis-treatment by their hearers? Yes. House over their heads and comfy paycheck? no. Yet, always showing God's amazing love through it all? YES!
There are many who fake it (in the ministry), but they can't teach God's Word with passion and clarity that in any way looks like the apostles, if they aren't genuine. The fake pastors cannot give what they do not have. If all they have is knowledge, they cannot give wise Biblical counsel, only worldly, fleshly, comfortable advice. So, if you are planning to go into the ministry - I commend you for that - I really do! But, because I care about you, I must warn you to be careful that God is calling you, and it's not your own wish for an easier prestigious life. But, if you plan to do it for an easy paycheck, do not do it. If you seek to have much time off to live the easy life you wish for - do not do it - save your soul from much harm, or worse - God's wrath! For if you use the pulpit or other ministry to cultivate a life of ease, all you will do it is heap up intense judgment for your soul here, to reap it there! With that said, I (and my family) would love to join those who pray with and for you in the training and the ministry!
Very often, I can be found pleading with God to raise up laborers - not busy hands, but honorable leaders, God-fearing leaders - ones who won't say what is comfortable, but will clearly proclaim God's truth - in season and out of season - when people want to hear it and when they don't; when people are kind and when spit in your face. How we need more and more men like that, who know what's valuable - God's truth, for all man's wisdom is lies. And are daily learning how to show God's love back to all who are around them - making every effort to clearly communicate not that we (or God) condemn them, but that we are compelling (and even pleading) with them to grow, daily, in repentance - turning from sin, turning from lies, turning from fictions and fantasies to His truth and growing in embracing the love of the truth.
If you agree with this, I hope you will say hey - and we can enjoy warm fellowship in God's purifying truth, daily growing to become more genuine in our walk with Christ, and daily leaving hypocrisy and rebellion behind, and enjoying the sweet fellowship with the Father, Son, Holy Spirit, and our brethren! ~ If you do not understand me in this, please don't jump to conclusions - but ask me to clarify, and I will be glad to do so, as God and time and work allow.
Praying for each of you, and appreciate the many who pray for me!
a growing, servant/life-slave of Jesus, SH