Text: Romans 12:6-13
Theme: Use our gifts to serve others enthusiastically
Key verses: “In his grace, God has given us different gifts for doing certain things well…speak out with as much faith as God has given you…serve them well…teach well…give generously…take the responsibility seriously…do it gladly. Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Hold tightly to what is good. Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other. Never be lazy, but work hard and serve the Lord enthusiastically. Rejoice in our confident hope. Be patient in trouble, and keep on praying. When God’s people are in need, be ready to help them. Always be eager to practice hospitality” (v. 6-13).
What God said to me: Son, you are sitting in a beautiful cabin on top of a snow-covered mountain–the same mountain you grew up near and where you have met with me countless times over the years. You are in the perfect spot to hear from me this weekend. Don’t take this time and this gift from me for granted. I have blessed you with a warm, quiet, distraction-free experience where you can commune with me, petition me, and make plans for Next Level Worship in the coming months and years. I will answer you and show you your next steps. (I’m good like that.) But you need to listen and obey whatever I tell you. In this passage Paul is giving very practical instructions that flow from a life completely yielded to me as a living sacrifice. Notice that in every gift I provide you are to be eager and enthusiastic, giving your all to serve others through those gifts. So there are two sides to this: There are the gifts and the givers. I gave you the gifts, and I expect you to be the giver who makes use of my gifts to help others. You are to pass those on and do it with gladness and determination. It will feel like hard work at times and inconvenience. However, you must stay with it. I will give you strength. I have already added years to your life since your heart attack. Keep in mind that I am the one keeping your blood flowing and your heart ticking. I gave you life and breath, and until I take those away from you, you must be about my business on the earth. My business, so to speak, is your business too. And that is to love one another deeply and be my ambassador to those around you and those I lead to you. I’ve got you. I am leading you. Don’t question who I place in your path or why. Just minister to them, disciple them and above all, sincerely love them with my love and care.
What I said to God: Thank You, holy Lord, for speaking clearly to my heart this morning. I am humbled that You would still communicate with me and lead me, considering the many times I have bowed my heart and mind to idols and forsaken my first love. Thank You for granting me this time on this beautiful Monte Sano mountain park. What a privilege! Please help me stay focused today and work carefully through our horizon goals and specific plans. I commit my way to You. Please protect our brothers and sisters in Ukraine today. Give them relief and provisions during the villainous invasion by Russia.