Thursday, March 17, 2011

3/17/11 Survival Guide Journal Entry from Pastor Fernando

Today's Reading:
Deuteronomy 32-34; 1 Corinthians 2

I came to you in weakness with great fear and trembling. My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power, so that your faith might not rest on human wisdom, but on God’s power. –1 Corinthians 2:3-5

Paul had to remind the Corinthians about the real source of the great things God did among them. They had to remember always that it wasn't his eloquent preaching but God's demonstration of power that would always sustain their faith. The Corinthians loved and appreciated all that Paul did for them, and Paul fell in love with the people in this church. They were bound emotionally and spiritually. But I believe that as the Holy Spirit used Paul to write these verses, he is not only teaching the Corinthians about the reason for their faith; he is also reminding himself that he is not the answer or their savior, only Jesus is THE answer and THE Savior.

As all of you adjust to being back home, you can meditate and have a glimpse of the amazing things that God has done through you in India. Because of your obedience and faithfulness, God has made a difference in many people's lives. Seeds have been planted that will bring fruit in years and generations to come. You are probably praying, hoping, and planing for the next opportunity to visit the wonderful people of India again. Maybe you are already thinking about convincing other people about the importance of continuing to support this ministry. This is all exciting! But our spiritual enemy knows very well our tendency to think that WE are what India needs and that, without our help, they will not make it through. And if you are not careful, even with the best intentions, you can easily develop the wrong mindset, and steal God's glory.
As the pastor of our church, I'm always thankful that God called us and chose us among so many other churches to support this particular ministry in India. I want to encourage you today to remain sober, to walk in humility, and to thank God for using you during this trip. Take some time to praise the Lord for what HE has done through you. Probably you said something or did something that was really cool. That's wonderful! But remember that without the demonstration of God's power in it, you simply had a good time with the people. Keep praying for the people of India, that they will not buy into our American Church culture, but that we will buy into their simple, genuine faith. Also pray that they will never depend more on us than on God's power, and that we will never become so arrogant as to think that we are the answer for their needs.

Dear Heavenly Father, thank you so much for what you have done in and through each servant in India during this trip. Please grant them a well-deserved rest after this trip. Help us to have a sober mind about the wonderful things you did through our church, and continue to provide more of your Spirit and resources to sustain them. Give us wisdom and discernment about how to help them in such a way that they continue to depend on you alone. In Jesus name. Amen.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you Pastor Fernando for sharing your wisdom, you have reminded me to not to be careless in giving glory to Lord Jesus. Your message has brought me to the feet of Lord Jesus again and I am so thankful to Him for giving me a family and a church that is so in tune with the Holy Spirit.
    Love you