The Believers Purpose

Galatians 5:13

God has a purpose for your life. If that weren’t true, He’d have taken you home to heaven at the moment of salvation. Do you ever wonder why He left you here?

The Lord intends to influence others through you. Our purpose is to be a vessel through which Christ overflows to others touching those who hurt and desperately need a Savior. Once we are saved, Scripture teaches, our involvement is threefold.

First, we love others. Jesus clearly stated that this was one of the two greatest commandments (Matt. 22:38-39).

Second, we share the good news of salvation (Acts 1:8). Some travel across the world to spread the gospel, while others teach neighbors across the street. The Holy Spirit will direct us to the right people if we are willing to obey.

Third, we serve in a variety of ways, like helping those in need, sharing our resources, and lifting others in prayer. Jesus is our perfect example of all three. His entire life was marked by caring for people both those who loved Him and those who did not. In fact, the Bible teaches that He humbled Himself and became like us, willing to give up His life for our redemption. There is no greater love; there is no greater act of service.

Scripture clearly defines the believer’s purpose. Aligning ourselves with God’s intentions for His children loving others, witnessing, and serving bring us great satisfaction. In fact, we’re still on earth not merely to hear more teaching but to act on it and share with others what we learn.

The Reason We Serve

Colossians 3:23-24

In His Word, God commands us to serve one another. However, there will inevitably be difficult people in life who make this mandate challenging.

Thankfully, a biblical definition of service can help us obey the Lord’s instruction, no matter who the recipient may be. And the reason is that God is actually the One whom we serve.

When we have this motivation underlying everything we do, it will impact the quality of our work and keep us from becoming discouraged. Then, whatever our task–whether we lead a country, teach children, or do something that seems unattractive–if our goal is to glorify God, we will do our best in His strength. And we trust Him to use us for His purposes, even if our labor should appear fruitless to us or to others.

When I was a child, I had to wake up before daylight to deliver newspapers. Even in rain I still had to complete the job. This was hard for me to do. Then the Lord impressed upon my heart that I was not merely bringing papers to people in my town; I was serving Jesus. As I understood this truth more, waking up and working was purposeful and doable. Truthfully, I still did not always feel like facing the work, but feelings were no longer relevant. I was serving my Maker.

Whomever God calls us to serve, and whatever He tells us to do, we can obey with joyful hearts when it’s done for Jesus. If this is our motivation, we won’t need worldly approval or evidence of impact. We need to know only that God is pleased and promises to reward those who serve Him (Heb. 11:6).

Requirements of Waiting

Psalms 25:3-5

Waiting for God’s timing is neither passive nor idle it takes discipline and commitment. I can think of four basic requirements for successful waiting.

Faith. The Lord’s ways and timing are nothing like ours (Isa. 55:8-9). From a human standpoint, He usually does things in a totally different way than we expect. But as we trust Him more, we’ll discover that His approach isn’t so strange after all. And when we live in harmony with God’s will, His timing starts to make sense.

Humility. To wait for the Lord, you must be convinced of your need for Him. Submission to His divine will requires humility–you cannot charge ahead with your own plans and at the same time be fully surrendered to God.

Patience. Are you willing to remain in your current position until you receive clear divine direction? Pausing for clarity from God does not mean that you disengage and allow circumstances to fall apart around you. Waiting upon the Lord is a deliberate decision that requires patience.

Courage. Waiting for God often takes courage, especially when there is pressure to act. If you’re not careful, you might stop listening to the Lord and follow other advice. So keep your ear attuned to the voice of Almighty God, and you won t go wrong.

Waiting upon the Lord is one of the wisest, most important decisions we make in life. And contrary to popular assumptions, it is an active endeavor that requires faith, humility, patience, and courage. When you rely upon God and wait for His timing, the various facets of life fall into place.

A Servant’s Rewards

Hebrews 6:10

In His grace, God freely gives salvation to those who believe in Jesus. We cannot earn this gift, nor do we deserve it. Our Father does notice our good works, though. And He promises to reward us according to what we have done for Him.

True service occurs when we allow the Lord to work through us for His glory and honor. True ministry occurs when divine resources meet human need through loving channels.

Revelation 22:12 encourages us, “Behold, I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to render to every man according to what he has done.” Whether large or small, all service done in Jesus’ name will be blessed. We must be careful, though, that our actions are for Christ’s glory. If motives are self-serving, the only benefit we receive is the praise (if any) that we hear from people in this life. And we know that men’s approval is not satisfying or lasting.

While some rewards will be given in heaven, other blessings can be experienced now. For example, we know great joy when we allow God to bless others through us. And there is deep satisfaction in realizing that we are pleasing Christ. In addition, there’s a profound sense of fulfillment when we lead a person to Jesus and teach him how to walk by faith.

Serving others is both a great benefit and a responsibility for Christians. We should prayerfully consider our motives to make sure that our goal is to glorify Christ. Only then will we receive God’s full blessings–rewards given not only in eternity but on earth as well.

A Faith Worth Passing Down

2 Timothy 1:3-5

The most precious thing we can pass down to children is our faith the confident conviction that God is who He says and will do all He has promised. Timothy’s strong relationship with Christ didn’t materialize out of thin air; it grew as a result of his mother and grandmother’s example.

Here are ways we, too, can hand down a rich legacy to the next generation:

  1. Teach practical biblical principles. Kids need to know God’s views on material wealth (Ps. 24:1), meeting needs (Phil. 4:19), and direction in life (Prov. 3:5-6).
  2. Model character through lifestyle. How we live whether with transparency, peace, and perseverance, or with fear, anxiety, and self-reliance loudly communicates what we believe about God.
  3. Serve God by serving others. Actions show that our faith is real (James 2:26). If we want kids not to develop a self-centered perspective, servanthood is key.
  4. Intercede for them. Children won’t forget hearing us pray regularly for them.
  5. Communicate love. Young people need to know we love them the way God loves us unconditionally rather than based on what they do or don’t do. Spoken words of love breathe life into their hearts. And as we affirm them for trusting God, they see that we value their spiritual growth.

As parents, one must be intentional about leading and inspiring our sons and daughters to follow Christ. But even those without children of their own can leave a legacy. The example to follow is Paul: though neither married nor a natural parent, he was a spiritual father to many (1 Cor. 4:14-16).

Knowing The Heart Of God

1 Corinthians 13:11-13

Most people long to be understood. We may have many acquaintances, but we all have a deep need to feel truly known by those we love most. This is because we were created in God’s image He also desires to be intimately understood and loved by us.

Just as you don’t want to be known for only the superficial details of who you appear to be, it’s not enough to know about the Lord. He wants us to learn how He thinks and feels, what’s important to Him, and what His purposes are. Of course, it’s impossible for man to completely know the mind of the Creator of the universe. In Isaiah 55:9, He tells us, “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts.” The depth and breadth of His mind is so great we will never be able to fully grasp it in this lifetime.

However, we can better understand God’s heart and character by seeking Him and learning day by day from His Word. If we genuinely desire to walk in His ways, we must first genuinely know Him. We come to know our friends better by sharing more experiences together. Similarly, we will also understand God better the longer we walk with Him and meditate on what He has revealed about Himself in the Bible.

God wants you to seek Him with all your heart, and He promises that when you do, you will find Him (Jer. 29:13). So, the next time you’re feeling a need to be better understood, turn to the One who understands you perfectly. Even more importantly, ask Him to help you know Him better.

The Power of God’s Grace

Romans 5:1-5

Grace is one of God’s most amazing gifts. It provides us with everything we need to live in perfect freedom: pardon for our sins, healing for our hearts, the companionship of God’s indwelling Holy Spirit, and access to freely cultivate our relationship with Him. We work, worship, and enjoy life surrounded by His unconditional love. His grace upholds us, fills us, and sustains us.

Since we are forgiven people, the Lord responds to us not as enemies but as His dearly loved children (Rom. 8:15; Eph. 5:1). He hears our prayers, speaks to us, and acts on our behalf.

The knowledge that we live under the covering of God’s grace gives us…

  • Security about our position. No one can snatch us out of His hand (John 10:28).
  • Boldness to live for Christ. Nothing anyone does or says can shake our confidence in who the Lord is or who we are in Him.
  • Peace for today because we can fully trust in His sovereignty. The Lord is carrying out His perfect will–and we can be sure that nothing is able to thwart His plans when we cooperate with Him.
  • Hope for the future. This life is just the beginning. One day we’ll see Jesus face to face, be perfected as the individuals He created us to be, and live with Him in our true home forever.

The Lord is committed to transforming each of us according to His special plan for our lives. Even His correction is an expression of His loving favor (Heb. 12:10). When we falter or fail, we can rest assured that His amazing grace hems us in and always offers us redemption.

Standing Before God’s Open Door

1 Corinthians 16:8-9

The apostle Paul had passion and vision to reach the world with the good news about salvation. As he followed the Spirit’s leading, his determination proved effective. There’s no telling how many lives the Lord transformed through this man. And his influence is still impacting people today.

Paul knew that Jesus had instructed His followers to “make disciples of all the nations,” teaching them to observe everything He had commanded (Matt. 28:19). God led and enabled the apostle to do his part in carrying out this divine mission.

But think about life back then that was a big task for a time when there was no mass communication. Paul could only teach, write, or train others to share the truth. In spite of limited means, however, he obeyed fervently and effectively.

God’s command is still relevant for us today. He has given us the work of telling all nations about redemption through Christ’s blood and resurrection. Compared to Paul, we have an abundance of communication capabilities including radio, television, Internet, and cell phones which provide easy access into countries all over the world. We could make more disciples by better utilizing these technologies. But how tragic if we get busy and fail to obey God’s command.

We stand at a critical moment in history for the church. The door of opportunity is wide open for us to share.

When A Nation Turns It’s Back On God

2 Chronicles 33

Hezekiah was a god-fearing king who brought about reformation among the Israelites. His son Manasseh, however, was an evil ruler. He had watched his father walk with God and live according to Scripture. Yet he chose to ignore the Lord.

Manasseh worshipped false gods, even to the point of sacrificing his sons by fire in order to praise Molech. He practiced much evil including witchcraft and sorcery and led Israel astray, thereby provoking God to anger. The king, along with the people, paid a high price for his rebellion.

This story illustrates the Lord’s intolerance of a nation’s disregard toward Him. Now consider our country. We, too, are a nation that pushes God aside one that has turned away from the only true God and embraced idols. Perhaps these aren’t statues of stone, but we worship money, sports ability, fame, and reputation, to name a few.

The United States of America was founded on biblical principles with the intent to guarantee freedom of worship. But over time, we have removed the Lord from many aspects of public life. Prayer in schools, for instance, was deemed unconstitutional. What was once a “nation under God” has turned into a country that tolerates a growing number of sins and yet belittles absolute truth.

If a nation turns its back on the Lord, His judgment is inevitable unless the people repent and make Him Lord once again. As believers, our responsibility is to pray that God would draw the heart of our country back to Himself and to help the gospel and truth spread through our land.

The Dangers of False Teaching

Galatians 1:6-9

The Word of God is truth that’s living and able to penetrate human souls (Heb. 4:12). Consider how powerful Scripture is: it can change hearts, save lives from eternal condemnation, and give hope to the hopeless.

Is it any wonder, then, that the Bible is a battlefield of Satan? The Devil will do his best to destroy its message and truth. In fact, this has been our Enemy’s continuous goal since he chose to turn from God.

Our heavenly Father has graciously let us know in advance the outcome of this ongoing battle: Truth will prevail. But while the Lord has the ultimate victory, Satan can gain ground among individuals. His tactics are dangerous and deceptive to the unsuspecting. For this reason, we should carefully guard against his attacks, which are hard to recognize unless we are prepared.

False teaching is one of Satan’s preferred tactics for leading us astray. At first glance, such instruction often seems to align with Scripture, but do not be misled by the deception. Two things are essential for standing firm against these slippery falsehoods: to be well grounded in the truth of God’s Word and to listen to His Spirit. Only then can we recognize the error and avoid the pitfalls of Satan’s lies.

The Enemy longs to mislead believers so they’ll be ineffective for the kingdom. He also wants to keep all unsaved souls far from salvation through Jesus Christ. Friends, prepare for battle. Grow in the knowledge of truth, and lean on God’s Spirit to guide you moment by moment.

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