PRODUCING A RIGHTEOUS WORK
The children were excited. It was a beautiful day outside and their new art instructor said class would be held outdoors. Eagerly the students collected their supplies and set up their easels. They each began their project at the direction of the teacher, yet one student seemed to excel all of the others in gifts and talent.
The teacher quietly noted this until question and answer time came. The teacher was a professional in teaching, but not really in art. As certain things were being explained and demonstrated, the gifted student began sharing his insight. It soon became apparent that student was more gifted than even the teacher. What was the teacher's response?
Conception and Following Growth
A scene like this can often happen in the church and small groups. God sets the gifts in the Body as the Holy Spirit wills, and since the public is invited to enter and many do, people of varying gifts and talents and background will enter in. Some are studied in the world and some are studied in the Word. It can become apparent that some have stronger qualities than others and these can be in people skills and management as much as in Biblical or natural understanding.
Obviously a thousand scenarios can enter our mind at this place - with many personally relating - and wanting to know what happened next!
But I am purposefully not expounding this more so that our minds can examine and explore the possibilities. What is right and what is wrong according to the Law? What is right and what is wrong according to the Spirit? If we choose the "order of things" we may forsake the "Spirit of things."
Some people delight in tearing up the current structure without understanding the purpose of order. So while some things may need to be torn up, if there is not a better replacement given, the tearing, while perhaps needed, may only be more damaging. "Let the wheat and tares grow up together so that the wheat may not be damaged." Sometimes that is difficult.
Because we are in an obvious transitioning time in the Church, it is important to know how to do that and what to pray for. Many have had their worlds turned upside down, while having the best intentions that they knew how. The haughty scorns of the adversaries have only enforced their mutual rejections. But is that the place where God wants to leave His people? No, of course not.
The gifted know that more is at work here. There is a coming out and an entering in. In fact, it is part of the pattern. The mystery is the Spiritual aspect of it.
Sometimes people are transitioned in order to find a different and more beneficial fellowship, or even information. One church in the sea of humanity does not "have it all" and many churches limit and filter what is "acceptable." But no local church is "the perfect church" because God is raising up a global church and it takes time for many to comprehend that with all the variety and intentions that God has. And if some choose to stay at just one, it may be the place of their calling for His purposes. But God endorses that call, and God can change it. Can we be led by His Spirit?
Babies must be protected, nurtured and then trained. Then they must have their testing time where they learn and discern how far their current skills can take them. But if God is our Father and Good Parent, then the Spiritually advancing will learn the importance of honing and using their gifts and character for the greater benefit, and this can only come by the death to self process. The greater glory is hidden by the cloak of humility, just as the badger skins of the Tablernacle in the wilderness hid the glorious access rites to God.
When people are different, they will be misunderstood and the first response of most is to master and dominate that which is different, even if some think they must "kill" it. This is the basic level "territorial" response - but God owns it all. Can we be where He places us?
When one is Spiritually enlightened and Spiritually seeking, they will hide themselves in that cloak and look for the greater good. Seeking Him leads to higher places but to be the leader of enlightenment without that cloak can often set them up for "the kill." So they must learn "the skill" of seeking God! They will learn when He is beckoning them into His Presence.
Some will attain a level of skill and seek a place of glory there. Some will even fight for their position. But some know their position and know how to leave that with God for His defense. Some will even understand that the Lord put them there and that the Lord can remove them, but with the faith and trust that it is for a greater good.
So where are we now in the Church? It is not "where it used to be." But has God left, or is He just taking us down another path to the reality of Him? That is up to us! Sometimes we need leading, sometimes we need pushing, and if we still don't move, we can get run over. Do we know how to choose Him?
If God wants to bring leadership to us, or make leadership out of us or others, can we hear His Voice on that? Do we know what to look for? In places like this, our character is revealed but even more, our obedience. If we have a teachable spirit, then we learn to lay our will down for a potential greater good. If we know His Spirit, then we see His endorsement. But if we want to learn Him, we will have to give up our knowledge for a season that He may prove a greater or higher good. That discovery may make us lay down our flesh and our spirits will rise to a higher revelation. Things will not look the same. Our "inner place" in the world will be different.
Sometimes God puts us in a place of hiding. Sometimes He puts us out there as bread broken apart for many. Sometimes we may be a drink offering poured out. But ultimately we know that He loves us and even more, that we love Him.
We move from faith to faith, strength to strength and from glory to glory. But all of that is centered in Him. And it is here that we find our rest.
Zeal for God is not wrong. It's life! Even Jesus had it, but meekness - a virtue - is power under control. Can God give us tools that will be used rightly?
God wants to raise up the master craftsmen in the church. The Apostle Paul was a master builder. We can be too. But first we must pray for them before we can ever be them! There is training for reigning in the spirit by Spirit. Then spirit under control can produce a righteous work.