Sunday, September 26, 2010

Salt of the Earth....

Matthew 5:13-16 (NKLJV)
Believers Are Salt and Light

“You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt loses its flavor, how shall it be seasoned? It is then good for nothing but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men. “You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. 16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.

Four times this past week this passage has come to my my daily devotion a sermon...on-line...even on facebook!! As my husband and I have have struggled through a difficult period in our ministry life and service to God, we have have been inquiring of God what we did wrong, where we made a wrong decision, vs if others were wrong. I have asked Him to be bold with His answer. I guess you can not get any bolder than having the same scripture coming to you that many times.

We are trying to embrace this period of respite but it is hard. We are doers-servers and teachers according to our spiritual gifts. I asked my husband as we read these verses in a Bible study we are doing together last night if maybe we had lost our saltiness. Have we become like the Israelites in the old testament wondering in a desert because we have not followed God fully. He agreed and stated "I feel so worthless..." and so do I.

Though our ministries appeared to be growing and seemed to be very active...had we allowed "something" into our lives to take away the salty savor that God needed in us so we could be affective for Him and not just for the ministries? This is so difficult to face even as I write these words...

Direct my footsteps according to your word; let no sin rule over me. ~ Psalm 119:133

Is it possible to loose ones saltiness while being so active in ministry? I'm afraid we have had to face that reality and humbly acknowledge the tolerance of things in this world we have allowed into our personal lives. This tolerance, big or small as it might appear from outsiders, now requires this time of respite... to re-group, to recommit and to more importantly remove any hindrance that have dulled our ability to serve God. Like the Israelites in Deuteronomy 30,we have allowed other "things" to really take priority of our lives and it seems it has become a road block for God's purposes.

Have you ever been in my shoes? Can you related? We are on a pilgrimage and we are holding on to the promises God gave to the Israelites in Deut. 30:2-3....

"...and when you and your children return to the LORD your God and obey him with all your heart and with all your soul according to everything I command you today, then the LORD your God will restore your fortunes and have compassion on you.."

Our fortune was serving in ministry and we miss it terribly. We know that when we return to Him with a full heart and soul commitment He promises restoration and compassion. We became to busy to see our feet slipping and now these two things are what we need the most right now.

One of the worst things we could have done is to not give God our all. We have never been more grieved over this along with our past failures and sins than we are today and we have never been more committed to get it right so that we can once again be salt and light in this world for His eternal proposes...not ours, not the ministries...HIS.

Holy God, restoring and compassionate Father, full of mercy and grace, embrace your servants. Allow us to rest on your shoulders during this time of respite. Allow us to grieve our mistakes and to grow from them becoming more capable of being a vessel you can use. We want to be a a man and a women after your own heart but we are weak, we lose focus, even when we think we are spiritually strong. we are nothing without You, we are everything in You. Help me to be the supportive mate my husband needs right now, to complement and build him up as he too is beat down by this. I have seen you use him and work through him and it humbled me. Do it again Lord. Do it again...for Your eternal purposes and Your glory alone.~Amen

1 comment:

elaine @ peace for the journey said...

I hear your pain; I love your heart. Your vulnerability before God and one another is a true testament to the life of faith you desire to live. I know that God will return you both to active ministry in the near future; don't be surprised if it doesn't look like what you now imagine it to be. He has a way of interrupting our best laid plans with his. I know this one. In particular, in the way my ministry life is shaping up in our new church appointment.

Too much to go into here, but I'd love to tell you about it sometime. Let's talk soon. I'm home these days, you know. No big plans for much else, so a phone call would be a welcome diversion. I'll email you my new contact info. In the meantime, I'm lifting your family before the throne.

Take good care of your hearts and one another in this season.

I love you.