buildingbodies4christ

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Archive for the tag “Potter’s Hands”

The Big Ask

Why? The annoying question little children ask to learn and grow. Every answer always brings another why. After a few of those whys, we have to end the asking with “I don’t know” or “because I said so.” As adults, I think we have stopped asking why; and it’s one of our biggest mistakes. Andy Andrews said that the ones who are really successful in business never stop asking why. Why does this product line work? Why does this marketing plan work better? Why doesn’t this item produce more revenue? Why? It’s really a big question that could bring greater results.

I have been asking “why” for some time now. Why am here in this time and place? I want to find my greater purpose to why God chose me for this hour on His timetable. I want to discover the task that God has designed for me. Another speaker said recently the why gives us a vision. It’s the motivation to do what we do. It’s the purpose for living, for businesses, for ministry, etc. The vision of our heart’s purpose – the heart of the individual or the heart of the business – gets us motivated to do greater things. If we could discover the answer to the why, it could change everything for us as individuals and us as a people, the church.

Another statement about “why” is the importance of having a story behind the why. The story captures the heart of others. It causes them to act when they hear it. So if there is a vision, then there needs to be a story behind the vision. What happened that caused you to have this desire you have to do what you do? There has to be a flame of passion that fuels the vision or it will fizzle and die after a few years.

I think my biggest struggle with “my why” is that I don’t have the story. I don’t have this radical thing in my life that has stirred something in me. Spiritually speaking as well as emotionally speaking, there isn’t a great story. My spiritual awakening was a gradual increase in knowledge of Jesus and then one day deciding to follow Him with all my heart. It was after a friend’s death that I wanted to have this relationship with Jesus. Her death changed my motivation to learn what I needed to learn so that I could be sure of my salvation.

I grew up in church. I have learned about Jesus from the very beginning. There wasn’t anything radical about the experience like some have had. I just wanted what my friend seemed to have, which was a much deeper knowledge of Jesus and an assurance of where she was going in the end. I wanted that assurance so I asked Jesus to give me that desire to know Him in a real way. He did. I haven’t stopped learning about Him and the desire is still there to experience more of Him every day.

The disciples had a relationship with Jesus. They walked along with Him, ate with Him and even slept with Him. They saw Jesus’ actions, and heard Jesus’ words. They saw the miracles. When Jesus died, they had a crisis of belief. They thought that was the end. What they believed was not the reality. They believed Jesus came for a physical kingdom that would take them out of Roman rule. But that was not Jesus’ purpose. They didn’t understand the story behind the big why of Jesus. Why did Jesus come?

The disciples were not scholarly men; they were everyday, working men. They may have grown up memorizing Scripture as all Jewish boys did back in that day. But they didn’t have the understanding that Jesus was fulfilling everything that they had learned in those early years of education. Jesus came because of the great divide between God and us. He came to bridge the gap. Jesus tried to explain it to them, but they didn’t get it. However, everything changed after the resurrection. The Holy Spirit came upon them, and understanding brought revelation. It all came together for them.

So, why did Jesus save me? Why did He save you? What’s your story? I am asking the big question “why” and praying that the Holy Spirit will reveal to me what I need to give me the motivation that will last through eternity. I need a resurrection to change everything for me. How about you? What do you need to give you the motivation that will last through eternity? The trouble with asking this big question is I will hear the answer – and I have to be prepared to act upon it once I know. Yet, I am willing to risk it all for the answer. The disciples went on to great ministries that turned the world upside down. We can do the same if we are willing to risk everything for it. Are you ready? Do you have a spark that can be fanned into a flame of passion?

For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. Ephesians 3:14-19 (ESV)

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Ouch!

You know when you ask God to reveal things in your heart, He’s going to respond. I asked for God to do that for me. One of the things that God revealed to me lately came through a sermon by Joyce Meyer. She made a statement about one of her kids asking what she (her daughter) could do for her (Joyce) that day. At that moment, I had a flashback to the days of my youth. I would have never come to my Mom to ask how I could help her. Mom always had to ask me to do things for her. I was so self focused that I would not have seen her need in front of me. I wish I could say I grew out my selfish nature, but I am still working on it.

I remember so many times when the family went off to play golf and left my Mom home to cook our supper. My Mom truly had a servant’s heart. She never complained about doing for others. She knew we were off doing what we loved to do. And when we got home, she was always ready for us to sit down and enjoy a good meal. Even in the last few years of her life, when she was hurting she still managed to get through the cooking without a complaint. I was better in the later years with helping out in the kitchen without being asked. But it still makes me sad to think of how I treated my Mom without the gratitude for her caring nature. I know in her last days, I asked her forgiveness for how I treated her in my youth. She had already forgiven me long ago, but I still needed to say it once again.

When God revealed my heart, I saw my selfish nature. I don’t think my Mom had a selfish bone in her body; especially in those later years. She was so giving. I keep asking God to reveal my heart, and sometimes He shows me my Mom’s. I am still so far from perfect. But every time He reveals something, I can choose to accept the challenge. I know I want to become more like my Mom, but even better, I want to be more like Christ. As God reveals each area to surrender, I am one more step closer to living like His Son. I know I can’t do it on my own, which is why He gave us the Holy Spirit to help us. It’s through His strength I can do all things. Change doesn’t come easy. I will probably fail more times than not, but that’s okay. God is patient with me and will help me finish the work that has already begun in me. God is at work. I am still in the Master Potter’s hands. I am still being made into a useful vessel. One day God will have me ready for His glory.

Yet you, Lord, are our Father. We are the clay, you are the potter; we are all the work of your hand. Isaiah 64:8

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