Now Is The Time!By T. A. Hegre (USA)
I suppose that the greatest robber of recruits for Christ’s army is the thought of tomorrow, next week, or next year. Many are deeply challenged to leave all to follow Christ, but never really begin their pilgrim-soldier way because they postpone the first step. The time to act is when Christ’s call is just heard. Delay generally means that one is looking for a way out.
A woman in London amazed everyone who knew her by her rapid growth to spiritual maturity. She had been a very wicked woman, having lived in the grossest sin. One day she received Christ as her Saviour. In one year she advanced so rapidly in her Christian life and service that it seemed to the Mission Superintendent that she had entirely outstripped him. When asked the secret of her so amazing growth in grace, she answered in just two words ~ “Instant obedience.” That is the secret.
THERE IS NO SUBSTITUTE FOR QUICK OBEDIENCE!
Some of us are waiting for bargain prices, or maybe jockeying for a better position, but the goods of heaven are not obtained through bargaining and scheming. There is no substitute for quick obedience when the call to the cross is heard. There are many sad hearts and sad eyes today that betray the failure of instant response to the call of Christ.
If we could only realize that it is the King of kings, and Lord of lords Who is giving us the opportunity to become like Him, we would not hesitate. By embracing the cross as He did, we become eligible to share His throne as His Bride forever. We are not called to an organisation or a system, but to a Person, even Jesus Christ Who gave Himself for us so that we could be able to give ourselves to Him.
The Bridegroom is not interested in a one-sided love affair; only those who love His appearing will have the opportunity of reigning with Him. I believe that very few people today would be able to say that they wanted Christ to come at this very moment. We may piously say we do ~ but do we? The test is instant obedience!
IT IS THE GOD OF HEAVEN WHO CALLS US!
On looking back, many of us would have to admit that the greatest contribution to an unsatisfactory Christian life is procrastination. The reason for delay in obedience is largely a lack of understanding of the urgency of the matter. First, we do not realize that it is the God of Heaven and Earth Who calls us and commands us. Second, we do not fully see the awful need of the souls in bondage that we should be setting free. Consequently there is a constant struggle for a normal life on a merely human, natural level.
RESPOND AT ONCE!
But a Christian is not natural. He is supernatural. The Apostle Peter even goes so far as to say that any Christian is “peculiar” (1 Peter 2:9 , KJV). We can never live normal lives in a world that is not normal. The world has not been normal since sin entered it. There is no possibility of living a normal life until “the curse is no more.” Praise God, on the other hand, there is a heavenly normalcy, but it is obtained by going the way of Christ, which is the way of the cross. Paul said: “I am crucified to the world and the world is crucified to me” (see Galatians 6:14 & 2:20). He entered instantly into obedience, and if ever a man lived a life absolutely contrary to the world’s way, it was he. We, too, are called to respond at once to the claims of Christ. Delay is dangerous! ~ Reprinted from The Message of the Cross (USA).
There is a huge challenge for Holy Spirit-filled Christians to demonstrate to those of the world that there is a better life to be lived through knowing and obeying Jesus Christ. May each of us make our lives count for God and for good today. The world desperately needs to hear the truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, for without the opportunity to hear and believe on Jesus, the people are destined for an eternity without Christ. Jesus has called you and me to make a difference ~ a positive difference! We can let our lights shine, and our lives speak as a testimony of the goodness of God toward us. So let us all encourage one another to have “listening ears” to what Jesus would say to us and then demonstrate our love to Him by our obedience to what ever He asks of us. I have learned that He never asks anything of us that we are unable to do. There is no room for excuses. Now is the time to show Jesus that He is, indeed, Number One in our lives!
When I look back over nearly 47 years of The GFM Ministry, I can see that all the most fruitful things we’ve done have all been the result of hearing the voice of God. Many of those things He has asked me to do, I had no concept of doing before He spoke. When He spoke He then gave me the heart and strategies to do it. As a result, today we are touching thousands of lives in over 100 nations around the world. God has called you and me to get His Message out to the nations. What are we doing about that? Are we so focused on family and local issues that we have forgotten the great commission of Jesus to take His Message out to the nations? As we listen to His voice, He will show us what part we can play in getting His Message out to others. Jesus is not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance ~ and He wants us to carry that burden and challenge too! May 2011 prove to be yours and my greatest year yet in the service of Jesus. ~ Rodney W. Francis.