Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Gospel Plow

All of us involved in ministry can recall many test, trials and attacks that we've experienced. These attacks come in many different forms. Some attacks and dangers are obvious and some are subtle. Every believer and especially those trying to share the gospel among unreached cultures are engaged in a titanic spiritual struggle. I have been praying and thinking about how we will equip ourselves for the work we have been called to do. Our spiritual condition will determine our survival and our success.

I am realizing that our titanic spiritual battles began a few years back and continue day after day. I have been studying Luke and God has spoken to me so clearly about things I have been worried & wondering about. I also recently finished a book we were given at COP in March called "Spiritual Survival Handbook for the Cross Cultural Workers" and it has helped me tremendously!

In Luke 9:59-62 - Jesus is very clear about the cost of following Him. I had to ask myself, "Am I prepared to pay the price"? See everyone is welcome to join the journey to follow Jesus, but as Jesus shows us in scripture, not everyone is ready to submit to His LORDSHIP! Many want the CROWD, but not many want the CROSS! Jesus list only a few of the numerous excuses people gave for not following Him. But we hear many more today. What excuses do you hear in your own hear for not submitting to Jesus' claims on your thoughts, feelings, and behaviors? Some think Jesus' words were harsh in these passages, but they are not. See the man's father had not physically died yet, his excuse was to refrain from following until he had settled all his other relationships. Will there ever really be a time when all our other relationships will be settled? I think not, because we are people with feelings, opinions and needs that are all different. Our families are not perfect with perfect relationships and if we wait to go and serve until they were all perfect - we would NEVER go!! Do we long for all relationships in our families to be great - of course!! But we have come to realize that we can NOT fix that. We are NOT responsible for others actions, words or how they treat people - we ARE responsible for ourselves!

And Jesus goes right from relationships and serving to putting your hand to the plow and serving. He does this because they go hand in hand. See we can't stand on the side of the field trying to fix relationships and make everyone happy because then you are serving THEM!!! You have to decide to follow Jesus - step out and away and grab the plow and start plowing. You can not look back. I know that when I am driving and something out one of the windows catches my eye and I look at it for just a split second - my car will veer to the left or right where I was looking. This is what Jesus is saying - you can't look back at relationships, friends, family, jobs etc... don't look back or you will veer off track. See when they were plowing they had to look straight ahead to keep their rows straight. If they looked away it would increase their risk of ruining the plow by running it into a rock in the ground. He is telling us in scripture that there are risk involved in looking back.

Pray with us that we would continue to look straight ahead as we plow this new field no matter how difficult it becomes making sure not to risk ruining our plow on rocks. We desire to apply all foundational principals found in scripture that will lead us to spiritual fruitfulness in our lives and our ministry in Mexico. It's one thing to go to Mexico and survive but a whole different thing to flourish and be fruitful despite the attacks of the enemy. 
The Lord's will for us ALL is to
 "go and bear fruit, fruit that will last"

This song has been on my heart for a while now and here is the story behind the reason she redid this old song. It is a great reminder for us all to press on and keep our eye on the prize - don't look back!!

Below is the full version of just the song - the lyrics are so powerful!

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