Same Old Thing or Something New? Part 2
When God wants to use us to do something different, it requires that we do something different. How do we know when the Lord has selected us for a unique mission? Here are some characteristics of an unusual, Spirit-led, God-inspired assignment.
- You are only given part of the plan or abbreviated instructions. Genesis 12:1 Now the Lord said to Abram, Go for yourself away from your country, from your relatives and your father's house, to the land that I will show you.
- It seems like the timing is all wrong. Genesis 12:4 So Abram departed, as the Lord had directed him; and Lot went with him. Abram was 75 years old when he left Haran.
- Your obedience has to be by faith. Ezekiel 4:15 Then He said to me, Behold, I will let you use cow's dung instead of human dung , and you shall prepare your food with it.
- Human logic and reasoning are unusable. 1 Corinthians 2:14 But the natural, nonspiritual man does not accept or welcome or admit into his heart the gifts and teachings and revelations of the Spirit of God, for they are folly (meaningless nonsense) to him; and he is incapable of knowing them [of progressively recognizing, understanding and becoming better acquainted with them] because they are spiritually discerned and estimated and appreciated.
- It will make you and others uncomfortable. Matthew 26:39 And going a little farther, He threw Himself upon the ground on His face and prayed saying, My Father, if it is possible,, let this cup pass away from Me; nevertheless, not what I will but as You will and desire. John 6:66 After this, many of His disciples drew back and no longer accompanied Him.
- Some people will be angry. Luke 6: 10-11 Then He glanced around at them all and said to the man, Stretch out your hand! And he did so, and his hand was fully restored like the other one. But they were filled with lack of understanding and senseless rage and discussed with one another what they might do to Jesus.
- Some people will boldly speak against it. Acts 26:24 And as he thus proceeded with his defense, Festus called out loudly, Paul you are mad! Your great learning is driving you insane!
- Your commitment will be challenged. Some people will try to talk you out of it. Acts 21: 11-12 And coming to us, he took Paul's belt and with it bound his own feet and hands and said, Thus says the Holy Spirit: The Jews at Jerusalem shall bind like this the man who owns this belt, and they shall deliver him into the hands of the Gentiles. When we heard this, both we and the residents of that place pleaded with him not to go up to Jerusalem.
- Some people will want you to explain it. Matthew 21:23 And when He entered the sacred enclosure of the temple, the chief priests and elders of the people came up to Him as He was teaching and said, By what poweer of authority are You doing these things, and who gave You this power of authority?
- You and your motivation will be misunderstood. Numbers 16:3 And they gathered together against Moses and Aaron, and said to them, Enough of you! You take too much upon yourselves, seeing that all the congregation is holy, every one of them, and the Lord is among them. Why then do you lift yourselves up above the assembly of the Lord?
- It will cost you something. Life cannot go on as usual. Galatians 1:11-17 For I want you to know, brethren, that the Gospel which was proclaimed and made known by me is not man's gospel [a human invention, according to or patterned after any human standard]. For indeed I did not receive it from man, nor was I taught it, but it came to me through a direct revelation given by Jesus Christ. You have heard of my earlier career and former manner of life in the Jewish religion, how I persecuted and abused the church of God furiously and extensively, and with fanatical zeal did my best to make havoc of it and destroy it. And you have heard how I outstripped many of the men of my own generation among the people of my race in my advancement in study and observance of the laws of Judaism, so extremely enthusiastic and zealous I was for the traditions of my ancestors. But when He, Who had chosen and set me apart even before I was born and had called me by His grace, saw fit and was pleased to reveal His Son within me so that I might proclaim Him among the Gentiles as the glad tidings, immediately I did not confer with flesh and blood. Nor did I go up to Jerusalem to those who were apostles before I was, but I went away and retired into Arabia, and afterward I came back again to Damascus.
- You can try to avoid and/or ignore it but it won't go away. Jonah 3:1-2 And the word of the Lord came to Jonah the second time, saying, Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city , and preach and cry out to it the preaching that I tell you.
Part 3 coming soon.