I’m continuing the lesson of what do I labor towards. I have found that I have often settled for spiritually nice conversations, but when I step back and look at the bigger picture all I see is something that was nice. How do I labor towards movement? When I read through the gospels, I am struck with how often Jesus talks about the Kingdom of God and the Kingdom of Heaven. A little over 100 times these phrases are used. Only twice, does Jesus mention the word church. As I sit and observe our Father’s heart, I am learning more about what it means to seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness. I am realizing that as believers it has become almost uncomfortable to talk about the Kingdom of God, a way of living as citizens of heaven. It seems that it is easier to live in a way to avoid offending people instead of filtering decisions through what might offend God.
There are two specific examples that have been helping me learn this lesson. The first is about a college ministry. There was a group of students that owned the vision, that were excited to take steps to see God do a work on their campus. It was great to learn how to help guide them, but not push. Yet I never taught them how to raise up new leaders. I never taught them how to cultivate a culture in such a way that there was a standard of living as a believer, a citizen of heaven, that would multiply themselves into the next group. Now within two years, what is left? There is a group who have nice activities yet no spiritual maturity and really no idea how to help another person grow spiritually. We can invite people to activity, but there seems a loss at how to invite people to Jesus.
The other example is about a student we will call Mary. She received Christ with joy and gladness. She began to grow. Yet she never learned how to feed herself. She never learned how ask life questions through the Scriptures. Now she has walked away from living a life in relationship with God. She has a positive attitude toward God and Christianity, she knows she has had an experiment with God. But she can’t feed herself.
What am I laboring towards? Am I willing to give up temporary feelings of success for a stronger foundation of disciple-makers? What steps can I take to see multiplication become part of our DNA rather than something that feels opposed? I want to live for the Kingdom of God and not for what will perish.