Monday, February 22, 2010

Deanna and her mother...

What a privilege I had in speaking to the students at Dallas Christian College last week. There were prospective students visiting that day as well. We experienced His powerful presence as we studied the Word together. I had the privilege of training students and leaders for their upcoming mission trips to several places around the world.

Two other opportunities I had during this time, were to spend time with Whitney and Jared in their home, and to have breakfast with my friend Afshin Ziafat. It was a great trip... just wish Deanna could have been with me.

Often times, within our families are those whose hearts are not surrendered to Him. We usually are aware of the need for their salvation, but are often occupied with life, and time passes.

Being His witness to our family is most difficult. They know all of our junk. They are most aware of our short-comings. They may even have thrown our own issues in our faces when we have tried to talk about Christ with them. We become easily sidetracked with regret and realization.

However, this is merely a tactic of the enemy. We must not allow him to gain this ground.

We must turn the negative into a point of reflecting the Grace of our Savior into the conversation, in such a way that they see that we too are aware of our weaknesses, and that in spite of them, He has forgiven us.

I know sharing with family is hard. Sometimes, lost moments become fodder for guilt... when loved ones pass and they do so without Christ.

They need to know that He is real. They need to know that He truly cares and is concerned about the details of our lives. They need to see true change in our way of living, so they might comprehend a portion of His power and grace.

Of course, this must be done without our parading it in such a way that it says, "see how good I am?"

We often see the good in others and search for the bad, that we might feel better about self. Our loved ones do this too. It's why they throw failure in our faces.

We must be grace to them. We must not engage in highly charged emotional debate, that looks more like trying to win an argument for the sake of being right, than one set free by a compassionate Savior.

When we fall into this trap, we assist the enemy.

Emotion is part of this experience, its true. Decisions emotionally made, often do not last, or in this case, prove not to be legitimate.

We must push forward for our families. We must pray for them, continuously. We must choose the times we speak, well. We need to be Spirit led.

Being Spirit led tends to be a foreign concept to too many believers. This is often reflective of a poor prayer life and little time spent cultivating relationship with Him.

We must be in His Word. If we do not make ourselves at home in His Word, we will not recognize when He is speaking to us. If we do not recognize when He is speaking, we will not be Spirit led.

Being Spirit led has everything to do with relationship with Christ.

We cannot expect to impact our families for Him (in a positive way) if we are not in deep, intimate relationship with Him, ourselves.

The difference noted in our lives by others is what causes them to question their own decisions and choices. If our life looks no different from theirs, then we are not reflecting the righteousness of Jesus.

Why would they want what we tell them we have if it's not demonstrated as making a difference by how we live?

Hypocrisy is an ugly thing. Those who shout the name of Jesus from the mountain, should not also be found partying in darkness.

We need Him. They need Him. They need us to live for Him, that they can see His reflection... before its too late!


At 9:12 PM, Blogger KK said...

Thank you for posting this picture. It gives me a face to visualize now in many conversations. :)

At 10:46 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for posting this Brent. I have been struggling with wanting to go out to the mission field again because of so much stuff going on here with my own family. Now I know that I've been trying too hard on my own, and not letting Jesus rule my life.


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