Monday Morning Preacher: Power

 

Question of the day: Are you using all the power Jesus has given you through the Holy Spirit?  And my follow up question is this:  Do you fully understand the extent of His power?  Just listen again to the words Paul writes in Ephesians 1:18-21:

“I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come.”

Just take a moment and allow that to sink in. Do you believe that power is flowing within you right now? Everything Paul wrote in that passage, is that the God who is living inside each and every one of us who is baptized in God’s family?  I pray the answer is a resounding “Yes!”

Here’s the problem.  When this is the power flowing within us, why do we make excuses when it comes to being on mission for Christ?  Why do we diminish His power and say it’s not enough by saying things like:

  • I can’t make disciples because I don’t know enough about the Bible.
  • If the situation came up, I’d have no idea what to do.
  • I’m just struggling in my faith right now.

When we make excuses like this, what we end up doing is diminishing God.  We say His power is not enough.  He’s not with us.  He didn’t give us what we need.

And yet, even though that power is flowing within us, we like to place it in a box.  We stifle it.  It’s like a baseball player making a half-hearted swing when they could be swinging for the fences.  And it always comes back to why?  Why is it that way? The truth is, God’s power will only come out when we want it to.  God will only work when we have the desire to use that power to further His name and give Him the glory.

If we do not have the faith to believe that what God has given us is sufficient, He will not come through.  He answers us according to our faith.  Let me give you an example. Open your Bibles and read Mark 5:21-43.  This story is of two people. Jairus, who said his daughter was sick and needed Jesus to come right away to heal her, and a woman who has been sick for 12 years.

The woman thought if she just touched Jesus, she would be healed, and she was.  And with Jairus, he asked Jesus to come to where his daughter was.  My question is: who had more faith?  Jesus could heal with a single word.  He didn’t need to go to Jairus’ house, but He healed the girl based on the faith of the one asking.  Jairus thought Jesus had to go to her, so he went, but his disbelief almost cost his daughter her life since He was delayed by the crowd.  But we see here that even death didn’t stop Jesus from healing this young girl.

We have found the One who has loved us so completely and has empowered us so fully that we should do whatever it takes to do whatever He wants of us. We should never say no because we are His, and we are part of His family, and we will do the work He asks of me without question and without hesitation.

It says we are the body of Christ.  To be the ones who represent Christ in this world, we love the people of this world as much as God does, and is it more loving to sacrifice our excuses to share the truth, or to say nothing so that they can die apart from Him?  And how do you think Jesus would answer that when He was willing to lay down everything for you?

Make Ephesians 1 a part of who you are.  See God for what He has truly done and how deep His love is for you.  And then go out in that same power and make sure no one has to live outside that love ever again.