Thursday, February 5, 2009

If we only knew....

Over the past year @ 6:15am every Wednesday morning a few men from Vintage have gathered to pray. Personally this time has created an accountability in my life to be more devoted to interceding for the city of New Orleans. Through these weekly meetings God has burdened my heart for people, which just leads me back to my knees almost as soon as I have risen. God is starting to move in our hearts and launch something that we can't take one bit of credit for. I write this blog because I want to share part of the time that we had this past Wednesday.

Instead of giving them a devotional challenge like normal, I simply asked them to divide a sheet of paper into two halves.

Side 1: Who the Lost are...
Side 2: Who the Saved are...

What I learned preparing for this week was that to truly be burdened for lost people requires that we as Christians fully grasp what a person is (their state) without Christ. Since I became a Christian at the age of 9 this is a difficult task for me, as it probably is for you. Right now I encourage you make two halves on a sheet of paper and read Ephesians 2. This passage clearly communicates each, as you read make a list.

Ephesians 2
Made Alive in Christ
1As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, 2in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. 3All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our sinful nature and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature objects of wrath. 4But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. 6And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, 7in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. 8For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9not by works, so that no one can boast. 10For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

One in Christ
11Therefore, remember that formerly you who are Gentiles by birth and called "uncircumcised" by those who call themselves "the circumcision" (that done in the body by the hands of men)— 12remember that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world. 13But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near through the blood of Christ.

14For he himself is our peace, who has made the two one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility, 15by abolishing in his flesh the law with its commandments and regulations. His purpose was to create in himself one new man out of the two, thus making peace, 16and in this one body to reconcile both of them to God through the cross, by which he put to death their hostility. 17He came and preached peace to you who were far away and peace to those who were near. 18For through him we both have access to the Father by one Spirit.

19Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and aliens, but fellow citizens with God's people and members of God's household, 20built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. 21In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. 22And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.

  • Now take 10 minutes and think about just one person in your life (work, school, family, friend or neighborhood) that needs some prayer today. Then go share with them today about how there is a God that is rich in mercy and abounding in love. He sent Jesus to earth, where he lived, died and rose again. Now we can have forgiveness of our sins and be made alive with Christ. (Eph. 2:4-7)

This is the good news from God. I pray that you accept it and allow it to compel you in your mission field today.

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