The man has been dead since the year after I was born, yet I amen him like he’s in the room with me.
I’m reading his book, Sit, Walk, Stand. Watchman Nee knows nothing of modern society or Christianity and yet, he has nailed it.
There is today all too much place give to the power of nature in the service of God. We have go to learn that, even where God has initiated a work, if we are trying to accomplish it in our own power God will never commit himself to it.
We give a man the task of organizing something – of planning a Gospel campaign or some other Christian activity – because he is naturally a good organizer. But if that is so, how hard will he pray?
When a born orator comes to the place of saying, “I can’t speak,” then he has learned a fundamental lesson and is on the road to real usefulness for God.
I read this and all the seminars and be better and find your lane and work your angle and train, train, train your guts out to use a gift you were naturally given come flooding back to my brain, rattle around like a carnival ride which makes my head spin and causes my stomach to feel queasy.
(And please – I’m not advocating don’t get better and know what you’re doing and use your mind and own your skill-set and hone your craft and gifts. Come on. Do your best, “to the glory of God” stuff, I agree.)
But listen. Enough is enough, friends.
We’ve had enough coaching. We’ve learned enough about our story. We’ve spent so many hours trying to fix the first 20-30 years of our life we are a bigger mess than ever because no one can think about themselves that much and not become one.
And here’s what I fear.
We’ve strategized God out of ministry. We have become the experts instead of Him. Worse: us being the experts has started to feel normal.
We’ve forgotten where the real stuff comes from. When we think we need a Skype call, a 3-step system, an endorsement by someone who has more influence than we do, another conference, a better idea and a better way to package it, we have forgotten sovereignty, omniscience, and the orchestration of God.
We view ministry as a gig, not a heart offering. Nee says it awesome: “In the work of God today things are often so constituted that we have no need to rely upon God.” I’m going out on a limb here, but I think this may make God sick.
We have come up with ideas based on seminar, strategy knowledge of what makes people interested in us, and in a waft of spiritual hopefulness, pinned the idea on God. We feel good about this, because we’ve kept the connection. But we might as well be marketers for the newest McDonald’s burger and call it the brilliance of God. It’s honestly as empty.
Please hear me, people whose hearts are in alignment with God (meaning: you walk with Him, daily. You pray. You read the Word. There’s a relationship there, and it’s a close one.)
…when we are in right spirit with God, He gives us wisdom and insight that we don’t even always go seeking. It is connection of the highest form, that things come without us even knowing how to ask for them. Yes, yes, yes.
But let us not gain insight from God and give credit to a seminar. At the end of the day, the paper might be shinier but that brilliant idea, if it’s truly brilliant, came from God.
And let us not lose sleep strategizing our way into celebrity or success and once we think we’ve figured it out or paid $9.99 a month to someone we think can help us to do that, then we tag Jesus like a picture on Facebook so He will know hey dude, we’re still thinking of You.
Let’s stop blaming Jesus for our ideas.
And let’s stop thinking our way is brilliant.
And let’s get back to the raw passion and cause that turned regular people in the Bible into heroes, mends fences no one is skilled enough to fix, and invades flesh that in it of itself is nothing to become supernatural vessels that change countries and Kings and communities and the minds and hearts of stubborn-minded, sinful, set in their ways, selfish, determined people.
He doesn’t need our ideas to do that.