Shake the dust off

When people don’t respond to the Good News we share, we’re often disappointed. Our disappointment drives us to pursue them further. We spend more time with them trying to convince them of something they don’t want.

Jesus’ advice for us in such situations was to shake the dust off our feet. He said “If anyone will not receive you or listen to your words, shake off the dust from your feet when you leave that house or town” (Matt 10:14).

In other words, move on. There are so many who are waiting for the Good News, but we waste or efforts on those who are not interested. Of course we continue to genuinely love them. But we must move on to others with the Good News. 

It’s Not Yours. It’s God’s Power

Power is intoxicating. Supernatural power is dangerously intoxicating. It’s easy to think that God’s power working through us has something to do with us.

Don’t get so possessive. It’s not yours. It’s God’s power. The Bible says “… we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us” (2 Cor 4:7).

When God’s power works through us to heal the sick, cast out demons, and transform lives, that’s a great feeling. After some time, it’s easy to get carried away thinking that we are something special. God uses us to do his miraculous work even though we are weak in many ways. That is because of his grace. Our weakness does not disqualify us from being used by God; when he uses us in spite of our weakness, God’s name is glorified. If we are used by God due to our merits, then we would deserve the credit. 

It was for this same reason that Paul was unashamed of his weaknesses: “…to keep me from becoming conceited because of the surpassing greatness of the revelation, a thorn was given me in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to harass me, to keep me from becoming conceited” (2 Cor 12:7).

So be careful. Don’t get possessive with God’s power. It’s His. When God uses you, check your heart for any selfish motivations. Make sure that people see Jesus and not you.

Your Turn

Join the discussion and add your thoughts. What have you learned?

Please share briefly in the comments section on the website.

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Alexi George is a pastor, teacher, and writer. He is devoted to helping people live their potential.

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    Stay Away From Leaders on Judgement Day

    “There may be numerous lines of people waiting to be judged on Judgement day. If you find a line that is short, you may want to go there to save time. But if that line has many pastors, teachers, and leaders, don’t go there.

    Those people will take too long because they have to answer many more questions than the average person.” This was an interesting statement I heard years ago from Dr. Walter Kaiser, an Old Testament scholar. I’ve shared this scenario many times over the years as it points to an important truth.

    His words may have been inspired by James 3:1 “Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness.

    A high level of integrity is required. Not only in the practice of teaching, but also in life. Teaching has greater value when it is done by a person of integrity. Leaders are more effective when that person lives a life of integrity.

    Are you a teacher, preacher, or leader? I believe the same level of integrity is required for all of these. I hope you will stand up to the challenge of integrity.

    Your Turn

    Join the discussion and add your thoughts. What have you learned?

    Please share briefly in the comments section on the website.

    —————

    Alexi George is a pastor, teacher, and writer. He is devoted to helping people live their potential.

    * For a Malayalam language video summary of this post, visit my Facebook Page.

    * If you enjoyed reading this post, please share it with others by using the buttons below.

    * Book recommendations on various topics I write on are available at my Resources Page.

    * For a list of books that I’ve recently read, here is my Reading List.

    Just Persevere

    Recently I posted a statement online like this: “Maybe one of the greatest leadership traits is perseverance. At the end of it all, you’ll be left standing.”

    Soon afterwards I read this statement from James 1:12 “Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him.”

    We admire those who have accomplished great things in life. Among the many good qualities they possess, persistence is probably the most common trait.

    My statement was probably more survival centred, while James 1:12 is eternity focused. Either way you look at it, there is a future, there is a reward.

    I’ve been asking young people to invest 20 to 30 years of their lives into one community. The trend is to move from one place to the next within one or two years seeking better opportunities. There is nothing wrong with better opportunities, but it is better to invest your life into a particular location for something you truly believe in, for the glory of God.

    Persevere, and remain steadfast. But to do that, you’ve got to develop patience as a strong trait within you. This will help you to stay put regardless of your situation.

    Along with patience, you’ll need to forgive people if you want to work with them for the long haul. Without forgiveness, your relationships will begin to fall apart, and you won’t be able to persevere.

    Ultimately, if you learn to persevere, you’ll grow in your life in every way possible. As a matter of fact, you’ll be forced to grow.

    You will make a significant contribution in this life, and in the life to come, you’ll receive the crown of life.

    Your Turn

    Join the discussion and add your thoughts. What have you learned?

    Please share briefly in the comments section on the website.

    —————

    Alexi George is a pastor, teacher, and writer. He is devoted to helping people live their potential.

    * For a Malayalam language video summary of this post, visit my Facebook Page.

    * If you enjoyed reading this post, please share it with others by using the buttons below.

    * Book recommendations on various topics I write on are available at my Resources Page.

    * For a list of books that I’ve recently read, here is my Reading List.

      Move Forward or Risk it All

      It’s a major concern for me when we see people unable to move forward in their faith. They are still dealing with the basic factors of the faith. Somehow, they are not completely sure of their faith.

      Since our faith rests on the finished work of Jesus on the cross, we have a confidence that it is firm. Our faith has a firm foundation. It is sure.

      Now, it’s time to move forward.

      But still, many continue to doubt if God loves them. They have difficulty believing that God accepts them and cares for them. Some are fearful that God will only accept them if they are good and live free from all sin. We want to live free of the bondage of sin and live for God, but that is not the measuring line which God uses to see if we are acceptable. We are accepted only because of the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross.

      Those who continue to struggle with these important foundational matters have the risk of falling away and abandoning their faith. For such people, it is quite difficult to return to the faith in Jesus.

      Thus we are to move forward in our faith. Otherwise we risk it all. The twelve disciples and the seventy two disciples were sent out to heal the sick and teach people about the Kingdom of God. Instead of doubting, they simply believed the words of Jesus and moved forward. 

      As quickly as possible, set your foundation in place. By faith, trust in the finished work of Jesus on the cross. Then, spend your time bringing healing to people. The healing needs to be physical, emotional, mental, and relational. Then, teach people about God’s Kingdom. John Wimber had called this “doing the works of Jesus, and teaching His words.”

      This is how we are to move forward. If we don’t, we risk everything.

      Your Turn

      Join the discussion and add your thoughts. What have you learned?

      Please share briefly in the comments section on the website.

      —————

      * Book recommendations on various topics I write on are available at my Resources Page.

      ** For a list of books that I’ve recently read, here is my Reading List.

         

        Choose Dead Heroes

        We all have our “favorites” in the faith: Abraham, Paul, Peter, and other biblical characters who have exemplified faith and courage. In the modern world, some may choose Martin Luther, John Wesley, D. L. Moody, Billy Graham, John Wimber, and even some of the “faith” preachers.
        I’ve got to be careful here, as Steve Brown warned against choosing our heroes before they are dead. While they are alive, they still have a chance to mess up their lives before they die. So, maybe I’ll stick to the dead ones as my heroes.

        The Jewish people considered Moses to be the greatest individual in their history. For them, he was the greatest patriarch, prophet, leader, and deliverer. When these Jewish people came to faith in Jesus, their exaggerated focus on Moses continued. Along with their strong allegiance to Moses came their allegiance to the Law of Moses, the first five books of the Bible that the Jews call the Torah. This focus was not all that bad, but the writer of Hebrews wanted to make a strong statement that Jesus is worthy of the greatest honor.

        By comparing and contrasting Moses and Jesus, Hebrews is focused on encouraging Jews to give Jesus the highest honor in the faith (Heb 3:1-6).

        So who are your favorites? Who are the modern “heroes” of faith that have impacted your life? For me, some Christian leaders, preachers, Bible teachers, pastors, and musicians have had a great impact on my faith journey.

        But there is none like Jesus. He is the one who deserved the greatest honor in my life.

        In yours too.

        Your Turn

        Join the discussion and add your thoughts. What have you learned?

        Please share briefly in the comments section on the website.

        —————

        * Book recommendations on various topics I write on are available at my Resources Page.

        ** For a list of books that I’ve recently read, here is my Reading List.