Hey Bill....how you been?...havent heard from you in awhile....Carolyn has been gone too...hope you are well! :)
Bill Wood said:
howdy living stones,
Perhaps we should change the phrase from serving the Lord to serving the Lord's purposes. We have been called according to His purposes.
First of all we need to come to the understanding that we don't have anything to offer when it comes to righteousness, redemption, or sanctification(holiness). God has provided all these in His Beloved Son, His Wisdom. 1Cor.1:30. Therefore we can't boast in anything except the Lord. To serve the Lord's purposes we gotta be clear on this. We offer nothing. This can be quite offensive some, but so be it. Jesus Himself is a stone of offense. He's the first thing rejected by those who aspire to build.
I see that Phil.2:13 has been referred to a couple of times and it too adds to the proof that we can't do a thing.
What is our part? Yielding. And at least for me I have to ask the Lord to give me a yielding heart. He's the One that gives ear that are willing to hear.
CAN I USE THIS ON MY FACE BOOK
Cheryl Kaster said:I think this mindset comes about because that is what the IC leaders lead us to believe is the way to "serve" the Lord. They get us early, and often, and this mentality of being there every time the doors open is very appealing to folks like me who tend to be "performance" oriented and want to please the Lord. Unfortunately, those same leaders are not as diligent to insure that we become disciples in addition to being "servants" of the Lord.
I agree with you when you say that serving Christ is doing what HE directs, each and every moment of the day. And, I would add, there is absolutely nothing more exciting than to hear His voice through His word, and His Holy Spirit.
The false requirements, as you mention in your initial post, are actually a bondage put upon us for the furtherance of someone's idea or vision of what "church" is. In the N.T. you don't hear anything about this. The disciples (all believers were disciples, not just "attenders") met together, ministered, used the spiritual and material gifts they possessed for the building up and encouragement of the rest of the body...no committee had to approve them, there were no hoops to jump through for them to be able to minister to, exhort, bless others. They were indwelt by the Holy Spirit of God and were FREE for the Holy Spirit to touch, love, heal through them. If we live so that all that we do and speak brings glory to God, the we can, I believe, be confident that we are serving Him, and not our own desire to be "involved."
There was leadership in the N.T. but it wasn't a hierarchial type such as is seen so often today that is super impressed with their education, knowledge and position and lord it over the sheep. Those who do that have gone very far astray from the knowledge of the word of God and especially the part that says that God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble. We had to experience some pretty extreme spiritual abuse for us to wake up and smell the roses about what was going on and how wrong it was. I used to think that we came out of the IC simply as an overreaction to the abuses we saw in more than one church. Now, however, I believe that we are not rebelling against God's will for us but rather are more perfectly in the will of God than we have ever been before and I each day I see His hand in our lives and trust Him more and more that He is leading and will continue to lead by His word and Holy Spirit. We have been set free to love and serve other people and to build disciples as we are commanded. Our accountability remains to God first and also to those others of the Body that He brings us into fellowship with.