Magazine for FINAL2 Mar. 2016{ Fall/Winter Issue) - Page 5

4 Steps to Greater Commitment to Christ The believers devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching, to the community, to their shared meals, and to their prayers. (Acts 2:42) Offering your Bodies Today, in some parts of the world, Christians are put to death for their faith. We are told that there were more Christian martyrs in the 20th century than in all the previous history of the church. Although we don’t have to physically give our bodies, we can do so by offering our wills to Christ. Be a slave to Christ This idea of our being slaves to God may be shocking to some. In today’s Western society we value our freedom. But it is the vocabulary that Scripture uses over and over. anyone or anything else. It is when we are servants of God that we can “live as free men” (1 Peter 2:16). Not all Christians are called to be martyrs, but all of us, I believe, are called to be servants of Jesus Christ, Serve Sacrifice deals with our perspective Sacrifice deals with our perspective. For example, a parent has a child who is trapped in a burning building. In the process of trying to rescue that child, the parent is severely burnt. While others may see that as a sacrifice the parent made for the child, the parent sees it differently. The parent sees it as committed love. Because of the love the parent has for that child, there isn’t anything they wouldn’t do on behalf of that child. Sacrifice results in joy. Sacrifice ought to always result in joy. It is joyous because you realize that it is more important and pays greater dividends that the thing you are giving it up for. “But for the joy that was set before him, he (Jesus) endured the cross,” Hebrews 12:2 Jesus had eagle eyed vision. He didn’t focus on the present but he saw the benefit it would be for generations to come. Jesus could have been rescued if he wanted to, but he saw the joy that was set before it. Do you know what that joy encompassed? The redemption of Jeannette C. Holmes and every believer who accepts Jesus as Lord. Jesus rejected a current gain for an eventual reward. He saw the overwhelming superiority of the eventual. Likewise, we see what it would eventually mean, and this far surpasses what we must suffer right now. The function of a slave or servant is to serve. He puts his master’s interests ahead of his own, his master’s will ahead of his own. When we get an anointing, an empowering from God, it is so that we can do the work God has for us to do. When God gives us provision, it is so that we can do the work that God has for us to do. Obey A good servant is always diligent to please His master by obedience. God doesn’t want our works. He wants to work in us and through us that He may be glorified. Sacrifice causes blessing to Rather, sacrifice causes the blessings to flow. The Lord says that we are a blessed people and because we are blessed, He wants us to bless others. We have been blessed to be a blessing. We can always hold God to what he says, “Lord I don’t have anything to bless with, and you told me to bless. I want to know what’s wrong, why I don’t have anything to bless with. Lord, I want to be what you said you blessed me to be.” God wants us to trust him, to prove him. We must know what He has said in His word and then call his attention to what He said. Sacrifice is an opportunity for commitment to be proven. It is easy to say how much we love and are committed to our ministry. Sacrifice should never be viewed as a burden, an obligation or a necessity. Continued on page 30 LOH Magazine / February 2016 5