Service to God – What is Success?
Service to God – Insights from God’s Word
Those who live according to the sinful nature have their minds set on what that nature desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. The mind of the sinful is death, but the mind controlled by the Spirit is life and peace… - Romans 8:5-6
Service to God - Pride and Ambition Do Not Equal Success
Prayer: There is only one thought in my heart this day, my King. There is only one reason for living that makes any sense to me. As I sit here quietly in Your Presence, I am acutely aware of the intensity of Your gaze as it falls on me. To recognize Your Presence in this place is more than enough to sustain me forever. Yet, even as this thought leaves my heart, I am sensing Your promises to increase my awareness of Your Presence every day, and to walk beside me no matter what path You lead me down.
I am also aware of the burning fire of Your holiness, purity, and righteousness. I am acutely aware of the power You have to change my dark ways to become a new refined person representing You, my King. I am in awe and also humbled at the intensity of this moment with You. As I approached You this morning I was already trembling somewhat as I knew that I would find You when I came searching. More and more these days I am like someone who is barely clinging to life and knowing that my sustenance will be given in the exact proportion to my need.
You are teaching me many things these days -- some new and some just a deeper revelation of a truth I have simply understood with my mind -- but was now beginning to see with my heart. You are so specific and so very personal with me these days, and I find myself wondering just what this new expression of our relationship really means.
The love I feel for You and the consistent need I have for Your revealed Presence is a humbling -- yet exhilarating experience. The flame of Your power to convict me with love is something I seem to understand and welcome -- even though it is very often painful to see my true condition. The very thought that I can go into Your Word and find a drink of water for my parched and often dying soul, sustains me. To be here in this place -- in Your Presence -- is the greatest treasure. No matter where my day takes me -- no matter what circumstances surround me, I know if I look for You, I will find You.
My prayer today is for my brothers and sisters that they would recognize the depths of treasures waiting to be found in prayer, bible study, ministry, and mission work. My prayer is that they will first seek an intimacy with You that is sustained by a daily time together, where You meet them, and change the focus of their day to Your focus. I pray we will all recognize for ourselves the magnitude of what one single Christian believer can accomplish when they step out of their own selfish and prideful lifestyle and grab on to the commitment of seeking after You and searching for Your Face in all they do.
I know today, You are right here, waiting for me and for all who pray this prayer to ask for a deeper, more intimate relationship with You. Your fondest desire is to teach us Your ways. You wait to whisper Your secrets in our ears -- if we will just tune in to Your wavelength. Honestly, Jesus, I could sit here all day in this quiet place where Your Presence joins my spirit -- and never move. Yet, I know this is my true challenge -- to step out of my comfort zone and step up to the call You have placed on me. You have given me powerful weapons to use for Your kingdom glory, and You are shining Your light on me and challenging me to pick up the Sword of the Spirit and the Belt of Truth and begin marching. Once again, I hear Your reminder that faith is an action word, but I can only take action when directed by You.
Oh, the lessons I am learning. Teach all of us, my King, to be obedient, humble servants. Protect us from pride and selfish ambition, and focus us on You and Your will, giving us the courage and perseverance to say no to human accolades when they could lead us down a path of selfishness. Help all who pray this prayer to desire Your Presence more than oxygen, and help us to serve at your pleasure -- not our own. May all we do bring You the honor and the glory!
Service to God – Making it Personal
Reflect: Many times we are challenged to lay aside our own needs so that we can serve the way God has planned. As humans, our tendency is to grab on to the things that bring us recognition, and label that success -- while the reality of what God has for us is put on the back burner. If you are not in an intimate, daily relationship with the Lord, it will be very easy for you to misinterpret the direction of your life. Please remember that God is a very personal God -- a loving Father who waits to direct your every step. We, on the other hand, are generally prone to using our own capable strengths to grow our influence in the world. It is so important to recognize that "still small voice" of our God to help us with both the big and the little decisions of our everyday lives. This process will get you where He wants you to go -- and that journey is the only journey worth living for.
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