Focus 40 Day 25: Extreme Living through Growing
Prayer Focus: Pray for wisdom and knowledge – Col. 1:9
Extreme Living through Growing
“GROW” IS THE FOURTH of the five stated strategic values of the Church of God reformation movement. It refers to an ongoing transformation of believers to become like Christ as we nurture and use our spiritual gifts to serve the Lord. God has entrusted gifts and talents to each of us that we might grow as we use them and see our culture transformed as they are affected by our efforts and witness.
“Again, it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted his property to them. To one he gave five talents of money, to another two talents, and to another one talent, each according to his ability. Then he went on his journey. The man who had received the five talents went at once and put his money to work and gained five more. So also, the one with the two talents gained two more. But the man who had received the one talent went off, dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money. After a long time the master of those servants returned and settled accounts with them. The man who had received the five talents brought the other five…” (Matt 25:14–30 NIV1984).
As we remain theologically conservative, we cannot afford to remain conservative about the use of all God has given us. We must press in to the greater things of God. We must risk using every talent and treasure. We must trust God to lead us where we have never gone before, investing in a culture that is fractured and hurting with no hope for change unless they experience the living Christ. As a musician, I have used the phrase many times, “Music grows or dies, but it never stays the same.” Christians, we are called to grow! If we aren’t growing, we are dying. We cannot walk with God and stay the same!
“And we pray this in order that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God” (Col 1:10 NIV1984, emphasis added). Is there fruit in your life? In your church? In your district and state work? What are you risking to see people born into the kingdom?
“We ought always to thank God for you, brothers, and rightly so, because your faith is growing more and more, and the love every one of you has for each other is increasing” (2 Thess 1:3 NIV1984, emphasis added). As we work together, risking what God has given us in order that we might serve, we will fall not only deeper in love with God but with each other. What wonderful byproducts of serving the Lord!
“We will in all things grow up into him who is the Head, that is, Christ” (Eph 4:15b NIV1984, emphasis added). Isn’t it time? Isn’t it time to grow up? Let’s live accountable to God for what he has entrusted to us. He will call us to account. When we make excuses for not using our gifts and talents, we are burying our gifts. Uncover whatever you have buried today and start using God’s gifts for his glory!
Dr. Melissa Pratt
Grow and Connect Transformation Team Leader and Pastor