“Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” Colossians 3:12-13, 17
Yesterday, my message asked ‘what now?’ and these verses from Colossians certainly provide us with a guideline on our behavior…on this side of Easter. Every mission team member should have these verses written down and tucked into their pocket where they can be read and re-read again and put to memory as they head out into the mission fields of this earth. We are children of God first and foremost and citizens of the U.S. second. The Apostle Paul wrote these words centuries ago and they are still applicable in our fast paced world today. As we travel to foreign countries, through the door to a nursing home or into our neighbors back yard we are marked by the Cross of Christ; we are His children. Our struggles, lack of patience, pride, arrogance, selfishness and lack of compassion need to be left at the door to our house before we walk out into the world. Heavenly Father, as we teach V.B.S. in our community, visit the aged in our nursing homes, feed children in Haiti or give a smile and hug to a loved one; make our witness sincere and guard us from hypocrisy and that which satan desires. I close today with the words to the hymn ‘Take my life and let it be’ that were written by Frances Havergal in 1874.
“Take my life and let it be consecrated, Lord, to Thee; take my moments and my days, let them flow in ceaseless praise. Take my hands and let them move at the impulse of Thy love; take my feet and let them be swift and beautiful for Thee. Take my voice and let me sing always, only, for my King; take my lips and let them be filled with messages from Thee. Take my silver and my gold, not a mite would I withhold; take my intellect and use every power as Thou shalt choose. Take my will and make it Thine, it shall be no longer mine; take my heart, it is Thine own, it shall be Thy royal throne. Take my love, my Lord, I pour at Thy feet its treasure store; take myself, and I will be ever, only, all, for Thee.”
Dear Heavenly Father, you have called your servants to ventures of which we cannot see the ending, by paths as yet untrodden, through perils unknown. Give us faith to go out with good courage, not knowing where we go but only that your hand is leading us and your love supporting us through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior. Amen.
May God be with you…Jay