WORKING FOR GOD, Part 2

If you are a Christian who is committed to working for God, how can you be sure you will be a successful worker? Remember, a “worker” for God is a Christian who is always looking for ways to share his faith with the lost; who is trying to live in obedience to God’s Word; and who does his level best be a God-pleaser, not a man-pleaser. If you are not that kind of Christian, go here; don’t waste your time on my site. If, however, you are or want to be an on-fire, sold-out worker for God, here are some ways to be successful.

1. Make sure you know Jesus!

This sounds strange; who would want to witness for Christ if they don’t know Him; yet our churches are full of good people who don’t know Jesus. These folk know all about Him, attended Sunday School, show up most Sunday mornings, but have never made a personal commitment to Him.

The first step in knowing Jesus is knowing yourself. Paul was a man who was under no illusions when it came to knowing himself:

Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the worst. (1 Timothy 1:15)

That’s a reasonable estimate of every human being; we are all “the worst” of sinners. When we confess that, we begin to see how much we need a Savior. When we get to know Jesus personally, we understand that He saved us through His atoning death upon the Cross. We believe He rose from the dead, conquering the greatest enemies of man: death, hell, and the grave, and ultimately, Satan himself. When we see ourselves alongside such an awe-inspiring Savior, we are then and only then able to live a life of complete surrender of our wills to His. Finally, we can call Jesus our Lord. It is then we can start to share His love with others.

2. Make sure your life is clean, inside and out.

Just like you shouldn’t share your sandwich with somebody after you coughed all over it, you really shouldn’t share Jesus if your life is tainted with sin. It’s true, we’re all sinners, even the most committed Christian, but consider what Paul wrote to young Pastor Timothy:

Those who cleanse themselves from the latter will be instruments for special purposes, made holy, useful to the Master and prepared to do any good work. (2 Timothy 2:21)

If you want God to use you, you must be clean, both on the outside and on the inside. It can be easy to live right, knowing people can see you, but the successful Christian understands that any secret, inward sin that is known only by God is enough to nullify any good work. You will live a terribly feeble Christian life if you are holding on to some sin or thought or affection that is contrary to God. Your witness will have no power. The old saw is very appropriate: God does not demand beautiful vessels for His work, but He does demand clean ones.

So many Christians experience disappointment after disappointment, failure after failure in their faith—working hard but accomplishing nothing, because God can see the thing(s) they stubbornly refuse to give up for Him.

3. Make sure you live a surrendered life.

In the miracle of the loaves and fishes (Matthew 14:17—20), Jesus fed thousands of hungry people with a mere five loaves of bread and two fishes.

Taking the five loaves and the two fish and looking up to heaven, he gave thanks and broke the loaves. Then he gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the people. (Matthew 14:19)

Jesus took all they had; they held nothing back, and a great miracle was accomplished. You may not have that much, but Jesus wants it all. If you, in faith, surrender your all to God, He will take all that you have and do great things through you. Here is a great secret of failure which many of you know all-too-well. Holding back anything God wants will guarantee failure. One little cracker or one little fish or one little habit will stay the hand of God. You may blithely sing I surrender all every Sunday, but until you do, you’re just whistling Dixie! Have you given your all to Christ?

4. Make sure you see the lost as God does.

For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost. (Luke 19:10)

Until you are able to see the unsaved as “the walking dead,” you won’t feel compelled to share your faith them. The Son of God left the glories of heaven to become the Son of Man because man is so sick in his sin, the only thing that could save him was personal divine intervention. A lot of Christians are quite content to live with the knowledge that “they are all right” and that when they die, they’ll “go to heaven.” Folks like that, as good as they may be, have no unction to witness. Are you like that? If you are, here are some simple things you can do to see the last as God sees them:

  1. Study the Bible and see what it says about the present condition of human beings without Christ.
  2. Don’t buy the lie that good people go to heaven. Buy what the Bible says about the seriousness of sin and the utter hopelessness of a life without Christ. Hell will be chock-full of good people who never knew Christ.
  3. Think about your friends, your neighbors, your associates at work, your in-laws, and all the people you come in contact with who don’t have a relationship with the living Christ and realize that their eternal future may well depend on what YOU say to them.

5. Make sure you work in love.

Nothing is as persuasive as an argument made in love. It is hard to resist love. The lost are not your enemy. Those who don’t know Jesus simply need to be told the truth in love. The Christian is not superior to the unsaved; the Christian worker is just the fortunate one who responded to the call, a call that goes out to all sinners. Your job is help them hear that call.

When we realize how much Christ loves us, it should be easy to show that kind of love to others:

I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. (Galatians 2:20)

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. (Galatians 5:22)

Find it hard to muster up love for somebody? Let Jesus love them through you. He does dwell in you, you know.

6. Make sure you don’t give up!

Persevere in the Good Work! Soul-winning is hard work; no wonder working for the Lord is often referred to as a race.

I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 3:14)

Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. (1 Corinthians 9:24)

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. (Hebrews 12:1)

There are winners and losers, even in the Kingdom of God! If you want to be a winner, you’ll have to persevere; you will have to be determined to win. Do you have the fire in YOUR belly?

Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. (Ephesians 6:13)

Never give up. It’s all right to get tired, but never stop long enough to give up.

Never, never, never, never give up! (Winston Churchill)

7. Make sure you know your Bible.

If you want to be a successful soul winner and worker for God, you have got to know what is written in your Bible! It is the Word of God that produces faith, both in YOU and the one you are witnessing to.

When the people heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and the other apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?” (Acts 2:37)

It was the Word of God that caused the lost to turn to Peter for answers.

Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ. (Romans 10:17)

Many Christians are working under the assumption that all they have to do is tell their “testimony” and the sinner will want to get saved right there on the spot. Your personal story is important, but it is the Word of God the pricks the heart, convicts of sin, and draws the sinner to God, not your words. If you depend on anything other than the Word of God, all your efforts will be in vain. You must have a knowledge of the Bible.

8. Make sure you pray.

Nothing happens without prayer. No soul comes to Christ without somebody praying for that soul. What do you pray for?

  • Pray that God will lead you to the right persons to share your faith with. You can’t speak to everybody all the time. Let the Lord do the leading; He will lead you the person you are meant to witness to.
  • Pray that God will give you the right words to reach that person. Everybody is different, so allow the Holy Spirit the freedom to speak through you.
  • Pray that God will continue to work on that person even after you have gone your way. Not everybody will come to Christ right away. Some people need to think about it. Ask God to keep working on that person in the hours or days that follow until they make a decision.

9. Make sure you are baptized in the Holy Spirit.

The precedent is unmistakable:

But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you… (Acts 1:8)

Working for the Lord requires something a little extra. You NEED the kind of power that only comes with being baptized in the Holy Spirit. You may have heard that there is no such thing as “the baptism in the Holy Spirit.” You may think that kind of thing ended with the end of the book of Acts. Not so! There is a present-day manifestation of the Holy Spirit available to all believers, regardless of what denomination they call home. This baptism of the Holy Spirit is something that happens after salvation, when you start taking your relationship with Christ seriously enough to want MORE of what He wants to give you.

Can you work for God without the being baptized in the Spirit? Of course! But why would you want to? There is so much more waiting for you. Seek the baptism and be amazed at the new dimensions your work for God takes on.

(c)  2011 WitzEnd

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