I have read of the miracles of Jesus performed by the power of the Holy Spirit. I have read how he opened the eyes of those who were physically blind. My story is a little bit different that that. I have been healed of a spiritual type of blindness. I see now that life is just not all about me. And what a surprise to think for all these years I thought it was. I was blind. I have had to face the truth. For many years I've been a Christian and done some pretty sweet things to advance the kingdom of God, however, the sad truth is... I've done much more to advance my own kingdom and agenda. I really have been reevaluating the intent, content, and motive of my own heart. That's probably pretty strange to hear coming from the Pastor of a church. Still, I must be honest before God and live with integrity or stop telling others how they should live. The fact is we often do "good" things that are not necessarily "God" things.
I've been reading Matthew 7:21 through 23 and it is a sobering passage of Scripture. I'm someone who has served on the board of a homeless shelter. I have worked hours on end in the soup kitchens and been on mission trips and paid rent for those who had a need. I've been quite generous, however, I'm wondering now if my works were more for me? Does "doing" earn you the right to Heaven or a relationship with Christ? I know it does not. I know that if these things are not done with a pure heart of love and as an offering they are nothing even if I give my body to be burned. Without "genuine' and "sincere" love they really don't matter all that much. Unless done in honor of Christ they are not an offering to God but just another prideful gift to ourselves to appease our guilt. Bill Gates and Warren Buffet do all these things I've mentioned. Many movie stars do more feeding of the poor than I have done. Does it matter? And yet we can all think we have done so much for God. I just want what I do to be an offering that is Holy. I am asking God to help me to represent him well. Lord, let it be about thee and not so much about "me' anymore. That's my prayer today.
I think it is so wonderful and amazing how God allows us to be distracted from our own trials and pain by using us to comfort or help another who is going through an even greater sorrow. As we minister to others our own hurts are being healed. WE are being transformed and changed. We are representing Christ well. When we focus on Jesus he will take the blinders off of our eyes and we will clearly see the wounds of the Cross and the wounds of others around us. We must push past our personal pain and our own feelings. We can't be held captive by our own emotions or we will never be able to help anyone at all. IT's like the story I heard of a medic who had been shot in a war zone he crawled to a soldier who was wounded, dragging his medical bag. When he was being treated a doctor asked him why he had further hurt himself by crawling to help someone else when he was himself so badly hurt. He said, "doc, I'm a medic. I heal people and bind up their wounds. It's who I am and NOT just what I do" This is today's lesson for me. I am a medic. At least I want to be a medic. I want my ministry to be about who Jesus is and not just what I do. After all, people don't care what you know or what you do until they know that you care for them personally. Love must be real. It must be genuine. I don't like "fake" perfume. I want the fragrance of the Lord to be on me. I want people to know I care and Jesus cares.