“When you are brought before synagogues, rulers and authorities, do not worry about how you will defend yourselves or what you will say, for the Holy Spirit will teach you at that time what you should say.”
- Luke 12:11-12
“Our ministry is so important to God the Father that He sent the Holy Spirit upon Jesus’ request to fill us and enable us to minister. We minister according to the degree that we allow the Holy Spirit to work within us. Our ministry is the ministry of the Holy Spirit. We speak the words, but they are His words. We take the actions, but they are his works that He commands us to do. We are the flesh and bones, the personality and talents; He is the motivation and the life.”
- Charles F. Stanley, Relying on the Holy Spirit
I have never been forcibly brought before the church leaders, but I have witnessed to others. In some cases, there was resistance and arguments thrown in my face. I have not remembered much of those instances other than the fleeting pleas for help left unspoken out loud, but witnesses asked where my information came from after it was over. I had a flurry of quotes from Scripture that amazed them. At that moment, I was wondering the same thing, quoting Scripture that I had never memorized, coming up with analogies to illustrate what I was saying or arguments to refute what they said. By the way, this is not good evangelism, to argue, but even in non-ideal conditions, when you rely on God and you are at His business, He will, as the Scripture above says, give you the right words to say, and at the time that you need to say the words. This does not mean that you can ignore Bible reading. It is probably from those memories of past Bible study that the words were and are drawn.
Let’s get over the hurdle of the word ‘minister.’ Modern Christianity, at least most major denominations today, is teaching that we are all ministers. Rick Warren, in A Purpose Driven Life, says that the pastors are Ministers with a Capital “M”, but every member is a small “m” minister. Finding our ministry may be the tricky part. And we should never belittle someone’s ministry. I believe that it was a Rick Warren video where he used an illustration of a church member who created a team to manage parking around the church and offer free valet parking. That ministry does not clothe the naked or heal the sick, but it is a useful ministry, especially if parking is at a premium.
Also note that in the Stanley quote he mentions that the Holy Spirit gives you the words, but for actions, it is the Holy Spirit’s work. So, feeding the poor is just as much God feeding the poor through our actions as the Holy Spirit providing the words for this blog. As Tim Hawkins said, “At least, I hope it comes from God” – this after he was singing a very silly song.
For me, this blog is my ministry, but other ministries may appear from time to time. I am filling in for my Sunday school teacher this Sunday, in part using the Stanley quote above.
I enter my quiet time in a special spot, and I drown out the outside noise. I simply ask something along the lines of, “What’s next?” I will have already read a few devotions, some Scripture, and blog posts written by others. I will have interfaced with the outside world within the previous 24 hours. All these are stimuli. But I think of one thing that is in the frontal portion of my consciousness. I may quickly consider an outline in my mind, but often the post veers to one side or another, for no other reason than the Holy Spirit wanted me off my track and onto His. I believe that there is someone, somewhere on earth, that may need to read the words that the Holy Spirit guided me to write. I also believe that there are religious leaders that might want to poke holes in what I have written, similar to the leaders Jesus talks about in the Scripture above.
But we must always be aware that we are guided by the Holy Spirit only as far as we are willing to listen. We each have the capacity to quit listening and go off in our own direction.
It is humbling knowing that God is in control, that this is His blog, that any success is due to His providence, and any failure due, most likely, to my not listening to God. I’m just the guy at the keyboard that wonders what the next sentence is going to be.
Soli Deo Gloria. Only to God be the Glory.