Years ago, I became impatient with those I was ministering to. The Lord had given me vision. I knew where the people of God needed to go. But I wasn’t seeing a lot of progress. Chomping at the bit but unable to run I ended up stymied and stewing…prayerfully, of course 😉
One night, the Lord woke me up around 3:00 AM and said, “What if I don’t care about the progress of the church. What if church is a place for you to give yourself to others, and what if that’s what I care about?”
That was way too many “what ifs” for 3:00 in the morning. Apparently, I went back to sleep because I woke up later. The Lord left me hanging from His questions for the next few days. My motives were laid bare, my perspective smacked back into place. I was radically reoriented to Jesus.
When my soul had marinated in His words long enough, God revisited His 3:00 AM message (at a more reasonable time–the afternoon). He reiterated that the church is a place to give myself to others, and added, “Giving your life is what moves the church forward.”
This is how I’ve viewed things ever since. What about all that vision and understanding about “where God’s people needed to go”? Fertilizer. More to give up; more of me to shovel onto the ground and work into the soil. After that, it’s up to God whether anything grows (1 Cor. 3:6).