What on earth are you good for? I can guarantee it is for a good reason. But in case you don't think it is, let me prove it to you.People who felt of very little worth who have then put their trust in Christ have found their good reason for being on earth. Christ transforms people who feel that they are no good into people who do great good. He started doing this with a rag-tag bunch of Judean fisherman, zealots, and tax colectors.
Most people lack focus in their life. They spend their lives doing what they have to do rather than on what they can and should do. Jesus gave His first followers focus. When you spend your energies without without a sense that you are making a difference, it can leave you feeling unncessary and even useless. This is one of the most debilitating things that a person's soul can be afflicted with. But when you see your Saviour directing you, it gives your life focus. Before Jesus told His disciples to "Go!" He first told them to "Go to..." Jesus would rarely ask a new Christian to pack up their life and relocate to another part of the world and attempt to reach people who have a completely different language and culture. He told His first followers to start with their own community (Mtt. 10:6).These twelve Jesus sent out, instructing them, "Go nowhere among the Gentiles and enter no town of the Samaritans, but go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.
As a follower of Christ your life focus starts by doing what you already do - connecting with people in your neighborhood and it then involves proclaiming. You already proclaim. We all proclaim. You are born and then reborn to proclaim. You can't notproclaim. Every person proclaims by:And proclaim as you go, saying, 'The kingdom of heaven is at hand.'
- choices and decisions they make.Christ calls us to proclaim the Kingdom of Heaven. Too many people describe their lives as "hell". Followers of Christ are citizens of Heaven.
- what they talk about most.
- what they keep silent about.
- what they wear.
- what they do with with their time.
- what they do with their money.
You may not think of your life or home as a taste of Heaven, but compared to what most in your neighborhood experience, it is! Even when you go through down or tough times, you may think that your witness is poor, but it is quite possibly then more than any other time that your neighbors are listening more closely to what you proclaim! You should live a life that causes those who watch it to question how you do it. Live a questionable life!But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ
"Heal the sick" is part of Christ's commission to meet the needs of a community. He didn't ask them to do anything they couldn't do. He gave His first followers gifts and then simply asked them to use these gifts among people who needed them. What do you find easy? Cooking? Sewing? Lawn-mowing? Child-minding? Tutoring? Whatever your answer to this question probably reveals the gifts that God has given you. The other thing that helps to reveal what gifts God has given you are the needs you see in your neighborhood. I feel I might have gifts of leadership, teaching, and discernment. I see needs in our community. You might have gifts to show compassion and empathy and readily see a need among teen-mums in our community (if you do, please talk to Heidi Sands of Baby Mum who is looking for some mentor-types to help with unwed teen Mums). You might have gifts of hospitality. Perhaps you see the need to connect with your nextdoor neighbours? This might result in you inviting them or your work-colleagues over for a BBQ at your place. Maybe you have the gift of teaching a rather patient disposition? You might look at the influx of non-English migrants and see a need you can meet. Christ calls His followers to serve. It's not much, but nearly 17 years ago our local tennis club was looking for someone to help coach the children of our children. I volunteered. Seventeen years later, I'm still there. I get a thrill everytime I see one of them come along to one of our church events like Carols By Candle-light. In Acts 9:36, Dorcas rates a special mention for the extraordinary good she did in her community through her ability to sew. Consider how you can serve others to meet some of the needs in our community.Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, cast out demons. You received without paying; give without pay.
So much of the good that has been done for the Kingdom of God has been undone by those who have served God yet succumbed to greed. Your life focus should never be about accruing wealth or serving merely to get.Acquire no gold or silver or copper for your belts, no bag for your journey, or two tunics or sandals or a staff, for the laborer deserves his food.
In every community there is a person of significant influence. Jesus told His first followers to seek out such a person. This "man of peace" is someone who can open doors because of their widespread connections with others in the community. This person might be your neighbour who knows more of their neighbours in your street than you do. If you take the time to "greet" the people whom God brings across your path, you may be a vital part of accomplishing great good - in fact, eternal good. We sometimes think good leadership must involve leading many. But good leadership involves influencing influencers.And whatever town or village you enter, find out who is worthy in it and stay there until you depart. As you enter the house, greet it. And if the house is worthy, let your peace come upon it, but if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you.