Saturday, April 6, 2013
Again, ad nauseum, I've just been scratching the surface of my relationship with Jesus since a week with Eugene and three brothers back in October 2011.
It wasn't anything that he or they said/did.
I really don't know what happened.
All I know is I read Matthew 23 with refreshed spiritual eyes and haven't put down the Bible since; exorcising my academic/ecclesiastical religion and praying/trying to exercise/experience/express a relationship with Jesus informed by the best witnesses to Him (66).
Indeed, I've been getting rid of as many books about the book about Him as I can so I can learn more about the real Jesus "before it was covered with the dust and debris of two thousand years" (Kung) of religion about Him that has often been more auto-suggested than divinely apocalyptic.
Or something like that.
Previously, I studied, reflected, lectured, preached, wrote, and sometimes even prayed about freedom from/in/through/for Him.
Presently, since October 2011, I'm just scratching the surface of my relationship with Him as informed by the best witnesses to Him and realizing I don't know much about Him but what I'm learning is a lot better than previously assumed.
It's kinda Pentecostal in an Acts 2 kinda way as opposed to the religious Pentecostalism that's as auto-suggested as the other mainline and sideline religions about Jesus often only coincidental to the One in the Bible.
The preceding is probably pretty obtuse to people who've already figured out everything about Him.
I'm sorry for not communicating better.
One of my recent discoveries about undershepherding after the pattern of the Good Shepherd - and please note that I'm only scratching the surface and may be wrong and don't mind being corrected by the Word - is faithful undershepherds unleash people gifted for ministry instead of inhibiting/controlling 'em.
While I've been increasingly/sadly aware of too many pewsitters and pulpiteers who can't serve unless they lead - I've witnessed sooooooo many who can't be in the choir or praise team unless they're directing it or can't be in Sunday School unless teaching a class or can't be a member without being on the board or won't be on the team unless named captain or... - I've also been guilty with sooooooo many of my peers of inhibiting/controlling people from exercising/experiencing/expressing their gifts for ministry; especially when it's part of my/our charismata.
Specifically, I've been guilty with sooooooo many of my peers of assuming only I am privileged to provide the message or lead the liturgy or teach the class or...
Catch my drift?
Instead of identifying charismata in a Romans 12 and 1 Corinthians 12 kinda way, I've too often inhibited/controlled charismata in the vain attempt to somehow legitimatize my role as undershepherd and justify my remuneration.
Now, and please go back to the hyphenated clause in the first sentence of this section if I'm horrifying you by this, I realize my role as the, uh, undershepherd is more of a gatekeeper or steward or unleasher of gifts for ministry that are not exclusive to moi so that the Kingdom may expand by divine intention rather than being retarded by my retarded/selfish/egotistical/arrogant sense of everything and everyone revolving around me more than Him.
Or something like that.
Ella Jane wrote about this on 4/5/13 in Thought for the Day: "God has set you apart and called you for His purposes...You were born with and for a purpose."
She wasn't talking just about pulpiteers.
She was talking about pewsitters who also have gifts for ministry that must be identified and unleashed to bless others as blessing Him.
She continued, "Commit your life to pursing Him. Don't worry about the hows and whys and whens...God has all that worked out."
She ended, "You are set apart, called out and chosen - hand picked by the very thoughts and hand of God. Trust Him. It's your time!"
Write to Ella Jane via PastorsHeartbeat@aol.com and she'll send the whole thing to you!
Moses complained, "Why do I have the great burden of these spiteful people?...Why should You tell me to carry them - as a nanny does some suckling infant?...I simply cannot keep carrying them along. They are too heavy."
God provided, "I will provide more leaders...so they can help you with the burden of this people."
Now read Romans 12 and 1 Corinthians 12 again.
Exercise/experience/express that/His freedom!
Blessings and Love!