| Re: a practical lesson in repentance|
Lahry, what great pictures you use to illustrate the concept of repentance. Now I'm going to take that further by using a personal illustration.
A few years ago my piano playing was getting sloppy. I had a lot of accuracy problems, which was troublesome to those whom I was working with. So I went to an expert teacher. She gave me simple excercises to practise from a child's book with cute stick figures. She make me play slow scales, etc etc. It was so humbling and I felt like a young child again. But my playing CHANGED DRAMATICALLY. I indeed repented from many careless habits.
I learned about repentance through that.
You see, I knew a lot about music. I worked with fine musicians, but that didn't bring about the CHANGE that was needed. It was not until I humbled myself and got help that I actually CHANGED.
It is that way regarding our walk with God and with each other. We can talk about it, but we need very specific training. And I beleive God uses people and circumstances, but the Spirit is the best "therapist".
A mature musician doesn't happen over night, but over many years and not by chance. The process of CHANGE and growth happens with work, tears, failures, humility, and help. So it is with life. We can't CHANGE all our defective ways overnight.
| 2005/5/28 8:35||Profile|
" I would like to give you one example of how the Lord disciplined me about three years ago.
Six years ago I was present for the opening of a church plant in our area. It soon qualified as a Calvary Chapel affiliate. During this time the Lord had begun to stir in me the calling into ministry. My pastor, then 29 years old, plugged me into varios ministries. I soon was given the responsibility of leading a men's fellowship group in our small congregation. I also began to seek out ministry training at a branch campus of Calvary Chapel Bible college.
I met many people during this time. I began to strive for position in the church. I also recognized that others that I met along the way in the various churches, strived also for position in the church. It was a good thing to land a paying job in an established ministry. Looking back now, I can see the uglyness of my sin. But the Lord is faithful to work out the clay as He saw fit.
You might remember recently that I posted a thread a "fireman and Christ." My brother Bob was a man who had walked with the Lord for a long time. He was much closer to the Lord because his nature was more like Christ. Well, back about 3 years ago, Brother Bob walked into our church and soon rose in the congregation because of what the Lord had worked in him. One day my pastor came to me and told me that Brother Bob was going to take over the men's fellowship ministry. That news hurt my flesh really bad. I was consumed by this event for days, but I submitted without much outward signs. Remember what Jesus said to the Pharisees, "you are like white washed tombs on the outside, but you are full of dead men's bones on the inside." This Scripture speaks well of what was going on inside of me.
About two or three months passed, and the Holy Spirit convicted me one day before a prayer meeting. The Holy Spirit brought a thought to my mind that I had thought soon after I was relieved of the men's fellowship ministry. This is the thought that was brought to my mind that day. "It's okay, Brother Bob can have the men's fellowship for now, he will die of Lou Gerihgs desease someday, and then I will again head the men's ministry." Then the Holy Spirit impressed upon me that I was required to confess this thought during the prayer meeting that night. I began to rationalize that no one needs to know, what is past is past. Yet the Holy Spirit did not let up. I experienced a huge amount of guilt that evening. Well, during the prayer meeting I submitted to the conviction and direction that I received earlier. It was a time of sobbing and a time of washing that I will not forget. It was a time of breaking and humbling that has continued to teach me lessons even unto today.
This is one testimony of what my Lord has worked in me. I have learned alot about what it means to strive for position in His church and the ugliness of that sin as He sees it."
Two things I know. First, I have experienced the goodness of how in God's wisdom He worked this particular root of sin out into the open. He brought my sin out of the darkness into the light. I have experienced the washing and refreshing that comes through obedience to His command. I could not have done this in my own strength.
All glory be to His name.
Secondly, because of what God has worked in me pretaining to this particular sin in my life, when I recognized the attributes of that sin wanting to rear up again, I recognize it for what it is. And because I have tasted the goodness of God that leads to repentance, it is much easier now to let that old sin die before it takes root again.
I no longer desire to strive for position in the church. I just go day to day looking forward to what God has me do. I know that He has called me into ministry, when and where only He knows. "
This has been posted in two other threads. Repentance is as Sister Diane has pointed to. It is not only God showing me what was wrong in my life, but it was also a time where God provided understanding that left an unerasible mark in my life. He not only showed me how I was living according to my carnal mind, He showed me a door to which His grace was sufficient to overcome the sin that was in me. Repentance equals conviction, confession, forgiveness, and restoration. It is a gift of God.
| 2005/5/28 9:38||Profile|
| Re: a leader repents|
Jeff, You have no idea how much I appreciate your testimony. I would like to post it on my site, if that is okay? I know that many other leaders struggle with the same temptations, and maybe they would be encouraged to admit it if they read your words.
People in positions of authority have caused soooooooo much damage because of their selfish ambition - turning countless away from the church and from God. I'm sure that words like yours can bring healing to many. I speak for myself. For years I carried a lot of buried resentment towards authority figures because of their misuse of power and position. I covered it up by being a pleaser.
I view you as a true leader - leading the way down to the cross. I trust that many "sheep" will follow you there.
I believe that if many of our spiritual leaders would humble themselves as you have done, we would see a great revival.
| 2005/5/29 18:46||Profile|
Sister Diane wrote:
I would like to post it on my site, if that is okay?
I is His judgement and testimony, and I am the witness.
| 2005/5/30 10:47||Profile|