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Warrior or Passenger?

Warriors or Passengers?

Are we warriors or passengers? Are our churches producing warriors or passengers? Do you want to be a warrior prince, a warrior princes or just a passenger?
There is an army rising up, are we ready to join? Click on picture below to listen to ‘Break Every Chain’, a song about the power of the name of Jesus and ‘an army rising up’.

Or if you are hungry click here for hungry song

Do you have a ‘Frontline’, or are you aware of what a ‘Frontline’ is? A frontline is where troops are massed to face the enemy’s frontline. We all have a front line whether we know it or not. The question is , how do we get prepared for service on the front line? Before we try to answer that question, lets see what we think we know or what our feelings might be, about the front line.

First of all it’s a scary place to be. In the BBC series ‘Downton Abbey’, one of the servants found himself on the frontline in the First World War. He was so miserable and scared there that he deliberately held his hand up above the trench so that it would be shot through. Now wounded he could get out of the frontline and be discharged permanently. Perhaps that’s how we feel sometimes? We would like to be discharged permanently? After all the job of being on the front line is for specialists isn’t it? You know, missionary types, those with the gift of evangelism. I’m quite happy to make out a standing order to support such people and of course pray for them, but, actually be on the frontline, no! In fact, when I stop to think about it my gifts are administration and hospitality, pastoral care or worship? So with all that that entails I’m very busy. Of course when the church engages in outreach then I want to help, but, only in the background, a supporting role so to speak, that’s fair enough isn’t it? Actually it does sound fair enough when you consider the way most churches are organised and the accepted culture found in many of our churches. Is there a hint of this in your church?

What do I mean by that? Well, as described above and what I want to say is that we are often left alone on our front lines. By that I mean, we hear a sermon or talk on Sunday that may be excellent from an expository point of view. Such talks may even try and point us to how we should think and behave in our daily lives, i.e. where we spend most of our time, eg work, school, college, home with family/friends etc. More often, however, it is left to us to make the mental/emotional/spiritual translation when we hear a talk, then we are left to, ‘do our best’ on our front lines. Perhaps we should not be overly surprised to find our best is not that great? Sounds critical, sorry, I just think we need to see change and of course I have generalised in order to make a point. So what can we do, personally and in our churches?
Personally:
“If with heart and soul you’re doing good, do you think you can be stopped? Even if you suffer for it, you’re still better off. Don’t give the opposition a second thought. Through thick and thin, keep your hearts at attention, in adoration before Christ, your Master. Be ready to speak up and tell anyone who asks why you’re living the way you are, and always with the utmost courtesy. Keep a clear conscience before God so that when people throw mud at you, none of it will stick. They’ll end up realising that they’re the ones who need a bath. “
(1 Peter 3: 13-16 , The Message) 1 Peter 3: 13-16 AMP

On our front line: we are not on our own, we have fellow soldiers available to support us, let’s remember to share with someone what is going on and pray!
We have authority, in Jesus name everything must bow, whether sin, sickness, guilt or fear, so pray in Jesus name!
Remain intimate and seek encounters with Jesus, the Holy Spirit and your heavenly Father. This will strengthen you, as it did Daniel ‘Then again, the one having the likeness of a man touched me and strengthened me.’
Daniel 10:18 NKJV
It is easier to offer to pray for and even with someone, than to try and explain the gospel to them, so try that as your response to people when they share their woes with you. Never the less work our something simple to say about your faith/relationship with Jesus your friend.

Churchwise:
Along with our fellow brothers and sisters it is a very difficult thing to get us from ‘here’ to ‘there’. That is to move ourselves from our comfortable place to our front lines. A complete change of mind set is required. For example, no longer will resources be directed exclusively to our ‘doing mission’ together or to seeker friendly services or ‘attractive’ and ‘open’ activities. No longer should we necessarily expect that the minister or indeed the pastoral care team, care for us in return for our attendance and giving. In fact, we should expect that in return for our signing up to be soldiers, we receive support to fight on our front lines, ie where we are.
What would a church like that look like?

If anyone has any ideas on how we could effect such a transformation in our churches, why not reply and I’ll gather answers together and send them out in the next email

We know thatour heavenly Father only draws us along with cords of love and He is very gracious to us. So don’t beat yourself up! In fact He loves us far more than anything we could ever do for Him. So seek Him first, seek the gifts He has for you, experience Him and His love. If we do this we will soon see we can’t help but be on our front lines!

Bless you in Jesus name
Andy

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