With, not for


I look forward to the day when people, en masse, realise that they don’t need to (and can’t) do anything to earn God’s favour, and start to simply live with Christ (rather than for Christ). This is from Wayne Jacobson’s book – He Loves Me – via my good friend Dallas. The emphasis is mine.

As you grow increasingly certain that his love for you is not connected to your performance, you will find yourself released from the horrible burden of doing something for him. You’ll realize that your greatest ideas and most passionate deeds will fall far short of what he really wants to do through you.

I used to be driven to do something great for God. I volunteered for numerous opportunities and worked hard in the hopes that some book I was writing, some church I was planting, or some organization I was helping would accomplish great things for God. While I think God used my misguided zeal in spite of myself, nothing I did ever rose to the level of my expectations. Instead, my pursuits seemed to distract me from God, consume my life, and leave me stressed out.

I’m not driven anymore. I haven’t tried to do anything great for God in more than a decade, and yet I have seen him use my life in ways that always exceed my expectations. What changed? I did, by his grace.

My desire to do something great for God served me far more than it ever did him. It kept me too busy to enjoy him and distracted me from the real ministry opportunities he brought across my path each day.

I used to start my day laying out my plans before God and seeking his blessing on them. How silly! Why would I want God to be the servant of my agenda? God’s plans for my day far exceed mine. I can almost hear him now as I awaken: “Wayne, I’m going to touch some people today. Do you want to come along?”

It’s amazing how gentle that is, but all the more powerful because it is. I don’t have to go. God’s work won’t be thwarted by my lack of participation. He will touch people anyway, but I wouldn’t miss it for the world. He does things I’ve never dreamed of and uses me in ways I could never conceive. His focus on touching people instead of managing programs has revolutionized my view of ministry. It requires no less diligence on my part but directs that diligence in far more fruitful endeavors.

If you’ve never know the joy of simply living in God’s acceptance instead of trying to earn it, your most exciting days in Christ are ahead of you. People who learn to live out of a genuine love relationship with the God of the universe will live in more power, more joy, and more righteousness than anyone motivated by fear of his judgement.