Monday, November 09, 2009
I just finished reading a wonderful book I heard of through a brother called Identity Theft, by Kevin Avram and Wes Boldt.
The following is an excerpt from this book.
“Each of us has a unique mixture of gifts, though one of them tends to dominate and influence the way we see and respond to situations and establish priorities. If we walk with the heart identity of Sons/Daughters, our hearts will be open to the prompting of the Holy Spirit, and our giftedness will be a practical extension of what the Father is working in us. We will minister with the grace He gives in the way He indicates we should. The focus will not be the gift, but the Father.
If we do not have the heart identity of Sons/Daughters, our focus will be on our own fulfillment and what we can do with our gift. It is an erroneous disposition that has led more than a few people to falsely conclude that their gift and their identity are synonymous.
Gifts exercised apart from a hearing heart can actually oppose the purposes of God. In fact, much of what we call spiritual warfare is simply God resisting our efforts to use our gifts to build or achieve something that He never called us to do. God resists the proud and self-determined. (1Peter 5:5)”
It never ceases to amaze me of how our calling “to be His” has been funneled by so many into the old wine skin format of religious thinking along with all that that encompasses. Church has been sadly defined by some geographical location usually confined to a building location.
I am seeing with increased clarity within this (for lack of better terminology) grace awakening that the foundational and fundamental corner stone that all and everything else rests upon is that which Jesus said the church He is building would rest upon, the “unconditional love of the Father.”
Because there are NO vacuums, we will either have deeply defined in us our true identity of whose we are Sons/Daughters of the Father, or, we will be defined by something no matter how good, as an alternate identity!
I think these words from Paul address some of this lack of identity within our siblings in Christ. “I mean that the heir, as long as he is a child, is no different from a slave, though he is the owner of everything, but he is under guardians and managers until the date set by his father. In the same way we also, when we were children, were enslaved to the elementary principles of the world.”
Rather than simply being living breathing extensions of our God and Father as His Ambassadors in this fallen world, so many have gravitated toward becoming an expression of another religious organization instead. Look what they’ve done to my work I initiated in them, I can hear the Father saying to His sons!
"...Till we all attain unto the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a fullgrown man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ... having abolished in the flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; that he might create in himself of the two one new man, so making peace; and might reconcile them both in one body unto God through the cross, having slain the enmity thereby." (Eph. 4:13; 2:15-16).
"...And have put on the new man, that is being renewed unto knowledge after the image of him that created him: where there cannot be Greek and Jew, circumcision and uncircumcision, barbarian, Scythian, bondman, freeman; but Christ is all, and in all." (Col. 3:10-11).
"...And put on the new man, that after God hath been created in righteousness and holiness of truth." (Eph. 4:24).
"For as many of you as were baptized into Christ did put on Christ." (Gal. 3:27).
I want to put this in here as I see it tying in well with my thoughts, it is a quote from A Sparks.
Am I to take upon my own shoulders the whole matter of my usefulness to the Lord, my vocation, my service, my ministry? No, never! How many of the children of God have been beaten, and broken, and buffetted about by the question of ministry and usefulness to the Lord. That is not our affair in the first instance. What is to be done with our lives depends entirely upon our walking with the Lord. We have altogether false ideas of ministry. We have set ministry before our eyes as some kind of order of things, something into which we get, something that we take up, and ministry is nothing of the kind. Ministry is the spontaneous outgoing of Christ in us, and the more there is of Christ to go out through us, the greater will be our ministry. Let us get away from mechanical ideas of service for the Lord. The Holy Spirit, Who has introduced Christ into us, is going to construct everything upon the basis of Christ in us.