I had a man in a church once tell me that God doesn’t work anymore.
Period. He was totally serious. That when the last apostle died and the Bible was completed that the Holy Spirit just … retired. He moved to Florida I guess. Bought a condo and lives on the beach.
Seriously though, this heresy is being taught in churches. That God is done.
And I used that word on purpose because there is nothing biblical about that teaching. We are refusing to consecrate ourselves because we don’t really believe that the Lord is prepared to do the amazing among us anymore.
One of those reasons for that, I believe, is that we’ve stopped consecrating. We’ve stopped expecting. We’ve stopped looking. We’ve allowed the amazing to become … ordinary.
When we first were looking for a home there were wild deer everywhere in the neighborhood where we now live. My kids were fascinated with them. We would have to stop and look anytime we saw them. Now that we live in that neighborhood, not so much. A few days ago we were driving and I said, “Hey girls look at all the deer!” The bored reply was, “Seen em all before, Dad!” What was once amazing has now become … ordinary.
I’m here to tell you that the Lord still does amazing things. God is not dead, He’s not retired, He’s not on vacation. He’s still at work in the world today.
That’s hard for us to grasp sometimes. When we get to the edge of the Jordan and we see it at flood stage, we start to doubt a little bit. Don’t we?
When the Israelites arrive at the edge of the Jordan in the beginning of Joshua it is outside of it’s banks. At that point it’s about a mile across and the peaceful river is a rushing torrent. And it’s kinda scary.
We have the advantage when reading this of knowing how the story is gonna end, but they don’t know that. All they know is that God has told them He’s gonna lead them across this thing. And all they have to rely on are the stories.
When I was a youth minister in Pampa we took a trip to Juarez Mexico. We were building a church building and holding a medical mission at the same time in a little town outside called “kilometros viente”. Our guide told us the night before we were entering that we would be stopped at the border and if they found the medicines that we were bringing in we could have them seized or we could even be arrested for trafficking drugs. That night all the adults were meeting in a room while we argued whether to follow God and go through with this or give up and leave the medicines behind. There were heated arguments on both sides. Finally we heard a commotion from downstairs and when we looked out into the parking lot there were all our students, surrounding the van and praying over it. We decided that we would go through with it. So the next day we cross the border. All the kids and adults are wedged into one van while myself and one other adult are driving the one with the drugs.
We get a green light.
That van, the one that was prayed over got a green light every single day for a week.
Those kids understood without fully understanding that when you consecrate yourselves, you see the amazing things that God is doing in the world today.
And He still calls us the same way.
“Consecrate yourselves for tomorrow the Lord will do amazing things among you.” – Joshua 3:5
That’s the call.
Set yourself apart. Make yourself holy. In order to do that, you have to come to Jesus. It is only through Him that we find righteousness. It is only through following Him that we find holiness. When we come to Him in faith, when we confess His name and repent, when we are buried with Him in baptism we become sanctified, consecrated, made holy.
That’s the call. Consecrate yourselves. Sanctify yourselves. Set yourself apart for God so that you may be part and see the amazing things He is about to do in your world today.
You can’t do that by being part of the world.
You can’t do that by holding on to the things of your old life.
So how are you “consecrating yourself” this week? How are you “set apart?” If you want to see the amazing things of God, it’s time we figured that one out.
*partially excerpted from “Choose Whom You Will Serve” by Jeff Dunn
*photo courtesy and copyright Jason Dunn