This video is of an offering devotional given by John Pearson at Vision Baptist Church in Alpharetta, GA. It was a blessing to me and I believe it will be to you also.
On average we are in 12 churches per month. We have had the opportunity to learn from men who are serving God that come from very different backgrounds. We have shared our hearts and we have asked men of God to share advice with us. The counsel and advice I’ve been given these past months has been priceless! The topic of today’s post comes from another seasoned man of God. He told me, “Sanctification is a life-long process, be patient.” Sanctification is the “setting apart” work of God. In one sense, we are “sanctified” positionally because of what Jesus has done in dying for our sins. In another sense, are “sanctification” is an on-going process. We are becoming more and more like Jesus as we submit to Him.
We want to see folks saved, discipled, and trained to serve God. Often times, we can get in such a hurry that we lose patience with brothers and sisters in Christ. We want to see them “progress” much faster than they are. This turns into frustration very quickly. Remember to be patient with people. God is at work, love them and lead them. How can we be patient like this? Here are two things to remember…
- Remember where you come from. I can be patient with others when I remember how God has worked in my life since the day I was saved. I can look back at the progression. At times it may have looked like I was at a “stand still”, but I wasn’t, God was still working on me (and He still is). The night I believed on Jesus, I did not wake up the next day knowing all the Bible, knowing how to navigate this world, and knowing how to let go of sinfulness in my life. Truthfully, I was still a mess and didn’t even realize it. It took years before I even realized things needed to change. It took God’s Word, the Holy Spirit, and a loving, patient church to build me and lead me to serve Jesus! Remembering how long it has taken me (or how long it is taking me) helps me remember that sanctification is a life-long process and I need to be patient wth others as they draw closer to Jesus!
- Remember God is the One who sanctifies. God absolutely uses the local church to build and love His children to conform to His will, but it is God who does the work! God’s Word convicts us and changes us! Jesus prayed in John 17:17, “Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.” Jesus didn’t make this request to His disciples. He didn’t encourage Peter, James, John and the guys to sanctify those who are saved. They couldn’t do it and neither can we. Jesus asked God the Father to do so because this is a work that only God can do!
Being patient with people is not easy, but it is absolutely necessary. God is at work. As you and I serve Jesus in our local churches, remember that sanctification is a life-long process, so be patient with your brothers and sisters in Christ that you are discipling and training.
What should we rejoice in? Maybe more appropriately, where do we find our worth? As I am on deputation to go to Argentina, it is very hard not to wrap myself up into what God has called us to do in Argentina. My success or failure is totally based on what happens when we get there. My worth will be seen through the lens of that ministry.
Jesus has something to say about this sort of thing. The disciples were so thrilled at the results of there ministry. Things were happening! Demons were even subject to them (10:17). So what was Jesus response to this? Jesus made very clear that they should not rejoice in the fact that the demons were subject to them, but they should rejoice that their names are written in Heaven (10:20). There ministry was not what Jesus told them to rejoice in, or identify themselves by for that matter. Their source of joy should not be in the fruit of ministry. There joy should be found that their names are written in Heaven, that they belong to Jesus!
From Conference to Conference
For many churches, the autumn time of year does not only bring the change of leaves but also a special emphasis. Some dub this time of year “mission conference season”, it is a time when the focus is on what they are going to do to reach the world with the Gospel! One Pastor said it this way, “This is our annual business meeting where we decide the fate of the world in light of the Gospel.” Much of September was invested in different mission conferences, and we have a few more scheduled to be in for October. With a full schedule, we are always in a church sharing our hearts about how God is leading us to Argentina, but mission conferences are a special time in a churches calendar.
Please continue to pray for us as we continue on deputation. We are asking for God’s favor in each church service and for our support to increase. We are currently at 70%. We will leave for the field March 24, 2016.
Patrick, Leslie, Lily, Piper, and Ivy Henry
Iglesia Bautista Luz (Light Baptist Church) just celebrated their first anniversary! Pastor Esteban started the church out in an area near La Plata. I have been in this church. I saw the people, I fellowshipped with them after the service. God is blessing this church. Pastor Esteban has worked hard. He trained at Lighthouse Baptist Church. He served there before being sent out to start this church. Please pray for Light Baptist Church that they will continue to grow, that many more will be saved, that men will be trained and sent out to do the same thing that Pastor Esteban has. God is at work in Argentina, but there are many more places in need of a Light Baptist Church! Pray that God uses us to train men to do the same!