DESIRE of the AMBASSADOR

John 15:4-5 “Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me.
I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.”

II Corinthians 4:3-4 “But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost:
In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them that believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is thge image of God, should shine unto them.”

I Timothy 4:12 “Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity.”

I believe that the following story was told by Michael Boldea, however, I’m not certain. He was in a rural Romanian village and went to visit an older man who resided there. The first few moments were of a casual nature; exchanges of greetings and a relaying of statistical information, (do your kids live close by, etc.) as Michael settled in for the visit. Within a few minutes, however, tears began to form in Michaels eyes. There was an ever so sweet presence of the Lord in the house and Michael became overwhelmed by it. Come to find out, this man had a very interesting routine. He awakened every morning, and after a simple breakfast, proceeded to spend the entire day in prayer. The older man had such a close relationship with the Lord Jesus that it could not be contained; even in a casual setting where focus was upon becoming acquainted with a visitor.

It was well over five years ago when I first read this, and it has become a routine pondering. To be so close to the Lord that the very atmosphere surrounding us will be affected. It touches on an issue that weighs on the heart of everyone who is born of the Spirit as we seek to be a city set upon a hill. We are surrounded by souls that are curently headed for an eternity apart from God.  Some of them are close friends and relatives whom we love dearly. Many are anonymous souls that we pass by as we perform our obligations. Priceless eternal ones, whose sins were paid for by the blood of Jesus, inhabit our ambience. For the most part, they are unconcerned about their sinful condition or the wrath to come.  They place full confidence in the customized set of falsehoods that the enemy has handed them as they rummage through endless heaps of wood, hay, and stubble in search of fulfilment. All the while, the clock is ticking, as their moment of departing this temporal realm draws continuously closer.

The task before us; to reach out to the perishing with the words of life, is almost overwhelming. In fact, it’s above our natural ability to properly engage in “by our wits” so to speak. Regardless of our understanding of scripture; regardless of how much coaching we have received on how to be effective at reaching the lost, if we rely upon mechanics, we’ll be greatly hindered. It goes without saying that the word of God never returns void and that the apostle Paul rejoiced when Christ was preached even when ones motives were suspect. (Philippians 1:15-18.) However, it doesn’t take much to cause scattering. Our testimony can be seriously “damaged in a moment” by an improper attitude, a lifestyle of habitual sin, speaking presumptuously, pride, a lack of sincere affection, hypocricy, a dependance upon cliches, gimmic-ology, allowing circumstances to have mastery over us, placing emphasis on the desires of self, or any number of campaigns that stem from the old nature.

The entire second and third chapters of James come to mind. Passages such as:

James 3:16-17 “For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work.
But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be entreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocricy.”

The story about the older man in Romania relays a truth that we are all aware of, but probably don’t practice as much as we should. While few of us have time available where we can spend the entire day before the Lord in undistracted prayer, we must strive to be as close to Jesus as possible. If we are abiding in the truth and walking in the Spirit, the fruit will be manifest to those around us. When opportunity arises to share the gospel, our words will be backed up by power. The peace of God will be present in our lives, regardless of circumstances and the observers will know that our God is real. When persecution arises for the cause of Christ, (it’s coming to every corner of the globe; Matthew 24:9-10.) they will see that our affections are truly on things above and that “though he slay me, yet will I trust in him.” For the sake of those outside the household of faith, (as well as our own well-being) it’s imperative that every aspect of our lives is in agreement with our profession.

We may not see tears well up in the eyes of anyone who comes around, however, they should be able to tell that something is different about us. This is how it was for the people who played a large role in my conversion. When I met Dennis and MaryAnn in the summer of 1983, (their neice had lived next door to us for years and was now living with Dennis and maryAnn) I knew something was different. Although they never “preached” to me, they were always “authentically friendly” and I liked to visit with them.  Over the course of that summer, I began to see my own sinful condition and desired to have what Dennis and maryAnn had. In September of 1983, I met the Lord Jesus and my life was forever altered. Sometimes we want to force things. We see the lateness of the hour, with so many who are not ready for eternity, and we want to shake them violently to awaken them. But we know that only the Holy Spirit can open blinded eyes. II Timothy 2:24-26 states it perfectly.

Well I have to go for now. I was up most of the night with Matthew and we didn’t make it to church this morning. Actually, the past week has been one of much chaos, wherein on Tuesday, Matthew went on a rampage at school. He put two assistants in the hospital. (For any who are not aware of my personal life, Matthew is our older son. He’s 15 years old and has autism. He is unfathomably strong and can be violent at times) He’s been home since Tuesday and will remain here until they can figure out how to facillitate his needs without injury to staff or other students. And yet, the peace of God surpasses all chaos and will abide in the midst of the most trying of circumstances. Last week was crazy, but this week I’ll try to make the rounds in the blogosphere. I really appreciate all who take time to share their observations in this venue.

Blessings always in Jesus name.

Acts 4:12 “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.”

Acts 4:13 “Now when they saw the boldness of peter and John, and perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marvelled; and took knowledge of them, that they had been with Jesus.”

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6 Responses to “DESIRE of the AMBASSADOR”

  1. Wonderful post, timbob! God bless you and I am praying for your Matthew.

  2. Thank you so much. Matthew situation is one that I struggle to understand. I have to go to a meeting at his school in about two hours.

    Thank you for your support. It’s good to know that there are saints in other venues who are concerned for Matthew. Blessings always in Jesus name.

  3. Hi Tim!

    That seems to be the theme running through me spiritually right now,straight from Phillipians 4:5-7. It is like you said on the last blog,that the Lord knows our needs before we do,we just need to pray for His will to be done,then for our spirits to be fine-tuned to hear His voice and to be able to bend our will to His own perfect will for us.

    I am sorry you are struggling on the domestic scene right now,but you know what,just keep taking things one day at a time! That’s all we can do.

    Thanks for finding time to write and encourage others,in spite of having so much on your plate. You are a shining light in a dark world,and I pray God keeps you filled with the peace that “surpasses understanding”.

    In Christ,
    Sandie

  4. Timbob,

    It has been impressed on my heart and mind through preaching and God just dealing with me about the importance of prayer. We cannot be an effective witness, have the power of God in our services and be able to influence people if we don’t pray. I just read a book recently about a man named T.W. Barnes who was very devoted to praying and God healed many people and worked miracles through him. More than anything, the devil would like to hinder us from praying, because every other area of our Christian walk hinges on our prayer life. May God help us to keep on praying and to step up our prayer lives in these last days in which we’re living.

    May God keep you and your family. I’ll be praying for your son.

    Carol

  5. Hi Sandie. Thanks so much for stopping by. Being still and hearing can be a real challenge. Our days are packed full of activity and, when we finally do have time to be alone with the Lord, ourn focus can be carried off by every form of distraction possible. Last night, for example, i was praying about a severe financial shortfall that we’re facing. While my mouth was praying, i found my mind “doing the math” on how to somehow make ends meet. That was wrong on my part.

    I finally prayed, “Lord; the math simply doesn’t work, so I’ll just leave it with you.”

    I think that it’s we need to be. (at least this family) To be in a place where we don’t see the end of the situation. Our current state began last fall when everything under the sun went wrong. Both vehicles needed work, the furnace had to be replaced due to a cracked heat exchanger, the dryer died, and so on. Drains too numerous tom mention coincided at a single moment. Not to mention the ever-increading expense associated with Matthew.

    No; the math doesn’t work. But God who inhabits eternty will sustain us in a way that will draw us closer to him. Today we have food and protection from the elements. The sun is shining, the snow is beautiful and the wind has subsided. Another of the alloted days between eternity past and eternity future is in play. Let the name of Jesus be magnified.

    I pray that my thoughts will be consiastant when the chariots of Egypt have failed and our yard is filled with refugees. Our daughter, Megan, had a dream of that once. She saw the field behind the house filled with vehicles and our yard overrun by a large crowd of people from….other places. (they were probably preparing to eat the goats.)

    Blessings always in Jesus name.

  6. Hi Carol. I’ve heard of T W Barnes, but am not familiar with him. I’ll have to look into this. It’s amazing how, just as the song says, we forfeit peace and endure needless pain because we fail to just take everything to God in prayer. My outlook on trusting God is somewhat confusing to others because of a single question that i once had to answer. The question was “what would it take for me to turn my back on God?” I concluded to allow nothing to ever cause me to do that. in other words, if tomorrow morning everything is gone and I’m being hauled off to a “residential center,” the truth of Gods word remains. Jesus is still my Savior; regardless oc circumstances.

    There’s a passage in Job that most christians miss the beauty of. The firsgt part of Job 13:15 reads “Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him.” It’s a confession that, regardless of circumstances, my affections are in heavenly places. However, most saints in my venue, whom I have discussed this with, will; cut me off with a response such as “Oh God doesn’t want you to live like that; he wants you to have nice things. he wants you to be the head and not the tail.” It’s like they are granted a glimpse of faith and quickly return back to the familiar. They look at the physical side of things and completely miss the liberty which that passage speaks of.

    Job didn’t like his situation, but he maintained his integrity. I would like for my situation to be different, but it isn’t. If I had the financial resources to where I could spend every single day in the streets proclaiming the gospel of Jesus, I would do it with a huge authentic smile on my face. But this isn’t the case. Either way, however, the devil loses. When I can’t go out, I can pray. when I can,t talk to his captives directly, I can go before the throne of grace and petition on their behalf. I can sit in my driveway after arriving home from work and pull down strongholds in far off cities.

    Our God is omnipotent and not bound by the constraints of time and space. However, our unbelief can hinder tremendously. WHOA; another long comment. Sorry. Thanks so much for stopping by.

    Blessings always in Jesus name.

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