Updated: Apr 22, 2020
Here in Rock Hall, we have tried to stay focused on developing as followers of Jesus as we Gathering to worship; Growing in relationships; and Going to serve.
Growing in our relationships includes growing in our relationship with Jesus. This leads us to develop his character in our lives and understand his calling on our lives. This GROWING happens as we learn more about him and put it into practice.
This is the way that our experience of God's power at work in us, it doesn't stop with us, it makes a difference in the world around us.
This series of talks from City Changers, a ministry who's purpose is to help disciples live out their calling as disciples in such a way that their community is changed. That's our desire here in Rock Hall.
Consider this from Matt 5: 13-16 in the Message paraphrase of the Bible
“Let me tell you why you are here. You’re here to be salt-seasoning that brings out the God-flavors of this earth. If you lose your saltiness, how will people taste godliness? You’ve lost your usefulness and will end up in the garbage. “Here’s another way to put it: You’re here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world. God is not a secret to be kept. We’re going public with this, as public as a city on a hill. If I make you light-bearers, you don’t think I’m going to hide you under a bucket, do you? I’m putting you on a light stand. Now that I’ve put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you’ll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven.
In Doxa Deo we raise and release ‘Called Ones’. We do not reference people as volunteers, as a volunteer is someone that helps someone else fulfill their calling – rather we recognize people as co-laborers.
In Doxa Deo we recognize calling both within and outside of the Church. Many are called to live out their calling in the marketplace.
Each person has a calling.
Paul referenced those working alongside him as Co-workers:
And so do Mark, Aristarchus, Demas and Luke, my fellow workers.
Jesus, who is called Justus, also sends greetings. These are the only Jews among my co-workers for the kingdom of God, and they have proved a comfort to me.
Yes, and I ask you, my true companion, help these women since they have contended at my side in the cause of the gospel, along with Clement and the rest of my co-workers, whose names are in the book of life.
Calling implies living beyond yourself
Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others. Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death— even death on a cross!
Living beyond yourself implies three things:
1. Sacrifice: We are called to give up who we are right now so we can become who God wants us to be. 2. Service: We are called to give ourselves to others and invest our lives in those around us. 3. Selflessness: We are called to live beyond ourselves and give ourselves to Christ and His Kingdom.
What is necessary in our lives that will help us stay true to our calling?
Walk worthy your Calling
In order for us to stay true to our calling, we have to realize that it is not necessary to ‘earn our place’ anymore. We have been set free from any form of inferior living and are now able to live our lives according to the standard of Jesus Christ. Paul gives the first three chapters in Ephesians to establish the truth that we are found ‘in Christ’ and then challenges us to live according to that calling
Eph 4:1 NKJV
I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called,….
Eph 4:1 Msg
In light of all this, here’s what I want you to do. While I’m locked up here, a prisoner for the Master, I want you to get out there and walk–better yet, run!–on the road God called you to travel. I don’t want any of you sitting around on your hands. I don’t want anyone strolling off, down some path that goes nowhere.
We Need to know what our gifts are
We as Christians should work like a body, each one of us has a different role to play. If we don’t know what our giftings are we will not serve God’s calling for our life.
Rom 12:4-6 Amp
For as in one physical body we have many parts (organs, members) and all of these parts do not have the same function or use. So we, numerous as we are, are one body in Christ (the Messiah) and individually we are parts one of another [mutually dependent on one another]. Having gifts (faculties, talents, qualities) that differ according to the grace given us, let us use them:
We need to discover the Passion of Ministry
Now I rejoice in what was suffered for you, and I fill up in my flesh what is still lacking in regard to Christ’s afflictions, for the sake of his body, which is the church. I have become its servant by the commission God gave me to present to you the word of God in its fullness— the mystery that has been kept hidden for ages and generations, but is now disclosed to the saints. To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. We proclaim him, admonishing and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we may present everyone perfect in Christ. To this end I labor, struggling with all his energy, which so powerfully works in me.
Colossians 1:24-29 (NIV)
BROTHERS, WE ARE NOT PROFESSIONALS – John Piper
The mentality of the professional is not the mentality of the minister of life. It is not the mentality of the slave of Christ. Professionalism has nothing to do with the essence and heart of the Christian ministry. The more professional we long to be, the more spiritual death we will leave in our wake.
For there is no professional childlikeness
there is no professional tender heartedness
there is no professional panting after God
Our business is to strain forward to the holiness of Christ and the prize of the upward call of God (Phil. 3:14);
We have been crucified with Christ; yet now we live by faith in the one who loved us and gave Himself for us (Gal. 2:20).
We were given the gospel treasure to carry in clay pots to show that the transcendent power is of God (2 Cor. 4:7) so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested through us (2 Cor. 4:9-11).
We daily deny ourselves and take up the blood-spattered cross of Christ (Luke 9:23).
We are God-besotted lovers of Christ
Brothers, we are not professionals! We are aliens and exiles in the world (I Pet. 2:11).
Our citizenship is in heaven (Phil. 3:20).
There is an infinite difference between the leader whose heart is set on being a professional and the leader whose heart is set on being the aroma of Christ, the fragrance of death to some and eternal life to others (2 Cor. 2:15-16).
The life-giving minister is a man of God, whose heart is ever a thirst for God, whose soul is ever following hard after God, whose eye is single to God, and in whom by the power of God’s Spirit, the flesh and the world have been crucified.
His ministry is like the generous flood of a life-giving river.
We are most emphatically not part of a social team sharing goals with other professionals. The professionalization of the ministry is a constant threat to the profoundly spiritual nature of our work. Professionalism kills a man’s belief that he is sent by God to save people from hell and to make them Christ-exalting, spiritual ambassadors in the world
God, deliver us from professionalism!
Deliver us from the “low, managing, contriving, maneuvering temper of mind among us.” God, give us tears for our people.
Forgive us for being
so shallow and so thin in our grasp of things that are holy,
so content amid perishing communities,
so empty of passion and earnestness in all our conversation.
Restore to us the childlike joy of our salvation. Alarm us with your awesome holiness and power. Cause us to hold to the cross with fear and gratitude as our hope-filled tree of life
Prayer: May Christ be all in all. Banish professionalism from our midst Oh God, and in its place put passionate prayer, hunger for God, white-hot devotion to Jesus Christ, utter indifference to all material gain, and unremitting labor to rescue the perishing, perfect the saints, and glorify our Lord.
O God, let us rise, not as professionals, but as witnesses of the glory and majesty of Christ Jesus our Lord.
In His awesome name. Amen.