Posted on February 17, 2015 at 12:50 AM comments (0)
Learning to ride it out!
When I first started riding, one of my greatest fears were the curves. Why?
1) I was told by someone I may not be strong enough to lean my harley in the curve,
2) I personally feared because, of the unknowns - how long, how sharp, what was on the other side of the curve? (I need all the answers upfront!)
3) Then the "what if's" would set in on me! (My insecure self talk!) What if I didn't lean enough or what if there was something in the middle of the curve and what if I couldn't straightened up in time!
As a passenger, curves thrilled me- but as a rider the thought of taking a curve evoked fear -great fear!
The only way for me to overcome the fear was to face the curves and I had to do it alone!
Either I was going to be a passenger for the rest of my life or I was going take control of my own harley and I was going to ride!
In order to ride- I had to take the curves-without stopping-and- ride it out.
I had to face my fear and I had to do it alone. No one else could take that ride for me. I couldn't let that fear rule me but I had to use that fear to motivate.
So, now I ride and I have learned to love what I feared the most-the curves and the unknown!
The curves have become one of my favorite parts of the road - curves thrill me! I have a favorite one back home! When I come out of the curve the sun shines on me as to say "ta-da", I smile to myself every time as only God and I know its meaning and the fear I overcame to receive the rays of the sun shining on me!
This morning I share this story because I have been reflecting on some times I faced fear (life's curves) alone and I came out on the other end stronger for it:
When I was alone making decisions as a single mom.
When I was alone as a child going in to surgery to have my foot amputated. (Parents were not with me that morning, doctors suggested they stay home!)
When I am alone crying over a divorce and a failed marriage.
When I sat alone in an attorney's office making a decision with no husband to confer with.
When a man put his fists to my face and threatened to blacken both my eyes because I didn't do something when he wanted it done.
When a financial decision needed to be made and there was no money to make the decision with.
When gossip was wrong again and it seemed I couldn't out live anyone ever believing it.
I could recount numerous times when I was alone, at my weakest moments, yet because I kept riding "life's curve" out I found myself at my greatest moments of strength!
Why? Because I found myself relying on what I knew was truly hidden in me.
When no one else can take "life's curve" but me- when I am alone - I find courage, strength and companionship with myself and with my God!
These can become the God moments that you have sought all of your life- and the healing moments you have prayed for!
Moments when; discouragement becomes courage, weakness becomes strength, weeping becomes joy, ashes become beauty!
Do not fear being alone... for it is then you find your strength, who you are with God!
You learn to ride the curves-when you ride it out!
On the other side is your "ta-da" moment! Just a little sunshine, as you and God share a smile!
Your God moment awaits - keep riding!
Posted on April 1, 2015 at 5:45 PM
"And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some evangelists; and some pastors and teaches; for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:" Ephesians 4:11-12
We living in a day that we need to see so many more people brought to the Kingdom of God; more evangelism and witnessing going on, but it is lacking in most churches. Week after week the pastor asks people to share their faith or at least bring someone to church, but week after week he sees the same faces with no new growth. Over at period of time a pastor can begin to feel that his ministry of building the kingdom is just not a part of his calling, or he lacks the gifting to do it.
We at Abiding Love Worship Center Ministries first want to encourage every pastor; to remind them that they still have the calling of Christ, to stay the course, don't back down or give up!
"And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart." Galatians 6:9 (NKJV)
So the question has remained - "What has happened to the ferver to win people?"
One of the reasons is that the church as a whole as told God, "we don't need your gift of evangelists." Now we would never say it out loud, but it comes to the church from two seperate ways; from the pastors, and from the people. Let me explain.
From Pastors: Now I have been in the ministry as a pastor for 17 years and I can say that I failed to see the importance of the evangelist as well. It usually is displayed two seperate ways.
(1) "I have to guard the pulpit from false doctrine with my life." Although this is good and right, it can go too far in that a pastor does not even recognize the need and calling of Christ for the evangelist. There is a remedy for this - the pastor needs to get to know the called evangelists in the area and others as they contact him. Many pastors never return the calls or tell the secretary to screen all calls and not to forward any that may be asking for a speaking egagement. This can be very detrimental to the ministry, for there may be a divine appointment for someone to come into the Kingdom of God through the ministry of the evangelist which he may be denying.
(2) The second reason is one that most pastor's do not want to recognize, but one in which did filter into my ministry. This is something that once corrected will open up many ways of reaching others. The second reason is pride. I know, I know, that may sting. It is not a pride that makes the pastor puff out his chest and say "look at me," but one in which he feels bad, because he can't "do it all." Pastors do many aspects of ministry from evangelism, to discipleship, to teaching, to training others for ministry and a host of other tasks. For this they are to be commended and prayed for diligently. The thought can creep into a pastor's mind that says, "I preach the gospel almost every single week, and if they don't respond to my preaching, I'm sure they won't respond to someone else's. While this can be true to an extend, sometimes familiarity gets a person numb to the message. It is actually good and right for the people to hear the same message from someone else. I remember having a guest speaker one time, and he preached almost the exact message I preached the week before. I had a few respond, but when he gave the response, many came. What was the difference? The answer is, not much. The answer was that they heard it from a different person...and sometimes that is all it takes. For that reason many pastors don't invite an evangelist to preach, but isn't souls won to the Kingdom of God more important that who the message came from? That answer is a resouding "YES!"
From the People: Sometimes the people don't support the pastor when he does call an evangelist. Here is what happens many times. The pastor schedules and three day revival - Friday through Sunday. He gives out flyers to pass out and asks everyone to attend. Then what happens is that hardly anyone from the congregation comes to it, let alone new faces, because they didn't invite anyone. The pastor is embarrassed for the evangelists and for himself because it reveals that the people don't have a passion for the lost. The remedy for this it is actually pretty simple. The pastor needs to share messages throughout the year speaking about the calling gifts of Ephesians 4:11 as well as stressing the need for evangelism in their everyday lives.
I need to mention a third fault here though; the fault of the evangelists themselves. What I mean by this is that there were in the past many false evangelists that were more led by greed and also very sensational in their practices. Many times, a pastor as well as the congregation has been burnt by the evangelist and it is hard to bring someone in again for fear of a repeat performance (pun intended).
We at Abiding Love Worship Center Ministries are called to come alongside, to partner with the pastor and church leaders; to complement them in everything that they have worked so hard to build. We are called to bring the awesome news of Jesus Christ to a lost and hurting people; to bring them into the Kingdom of God, but also to motivate and help train believers in their calling of witnesses for Christ in their personal mission fields. It is our experience that when believers know that they are on the front lines of ministry that the problems that usually happen in a church fall by the way side.
We ministry by the Word of God - the standard for all faith and conduct. We minister in the power and freedom of the Holy Spirit, allowing Him to touch hearts and lives as He wants. We minister out of our own experiences - we see the people really connect with Christ as He hears how He has ministered to us in our own brokenness and brought healing.
Contact us for a speaking time and see Christ bring freshness into you and your congregation!
Pastor Aaron L Gravett
|Faith to Walk Ministries||
From our heart to yours