Friday, March 25, 2011

Do'in the Stuff

One of my favorite sayings is from a man named John Wimber, who began the Vineyard Church movement in the 1980's. He liked to say that; "we're all called to do the stuff".

The stuff, refers to the things that Jesus did like heal the sick, cast out demons, make disciples, multiply resources, raise the dead, hear clearly from the Father, calm the storms, bring the truth in word and action, all of which was ultimately bringing the Good News that it was the time of God's favor. Not only are we commissioned to do the stuff, but according to the Lord in John 14:12; I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what have been doing. He will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father.

Greater things than Jesus? I've heard people teach that Jesus meant a collective anyone and he, and this passage refers to the whole Church rather than individuals. To me it is clear in the passage that Jesus is giving a statement about each person (anyone) having an opportunity to do even greater works cumulatively through their lifetime, (since Jesus really only ministered for about three years), and that they would be doing the very same kinds of things that He did.

I think many people skip this passage, or take the corporate interpretation of it because they can't imagine a life of experiences that would include doing the things Jesus did, let alone greater things throughout the course of their lifetime!
But that's what Jesus said.
The issue is if you believe it.
If you do believe it, dose your life show it ?

My friend Neil Cole likes to say there are two types of people; those who live incredible stories of their own, and those who just tell other peoples stories. Which one are you?

We just had a weekend of "spurring one another on towards love and good deeds"(Hebrews 10:24), at the Organic Greenhouse training conference in downtown Minneapolis. There is incredible synergy that happens when God brings hungry people together, who want to get out into the world and actually bring the Kingdom of God to those who need it. People not motivated for any other reason than to share the love and goodness of God that they themselves have the joy to experience every day in knowing Christ.
I had the privilege of meeting and hanging out with such people this past weekend. Those who long to do what Jesus did and even greater!

A life like this requires faith, risk and boldly stepping out into the unknown -yet this is a life living and experiencing first hand their own great stories rather than telling the great stories of others.

You just can't separate great works from great faith. And great lives have both.

For so long multitudes in the Body of Christ have kept to themselves; praying,prophesying, teaching, helping, having a type of community that choses to be pretty oblivious to the world and opportunities around them. Living a life of some faith, but not great faith.

This has resulted in a church of little impact and few stories of greater works! But that is not what God has designed for us. He has promised and "is able to do far more abundantly beyond that which we ask or think, according to the power that works within us." Ephesians 3:20. He desires to give us great lives with great stories of His Presence!

Jesus said; "No one, after lighting a lamp, puts it away in a cellar nor under a basket, but on the lampstand, so that those who enter may see the light." Luke 11:33.

We've been keeping our lights to ourselves. We've been keeping Jesus to ourselves. We have settled for little faith and comfortable lives. We've not 'asked or imagined' beyond our day to day thoughts and personal comforts. But we still have opportunities for great faith and greater works for the King and Kingdom! Each day gives us those opportunities if we look for them!

Let's "do the stuff" and live great stories of great faith for a great King!