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Sunday, May 29, 2011

Having Everything; Owning Nothing

A Christian who owns nothing is dangerous to the devil. He is able to go wherever God wants him to go. He is able to take any chance because he is not afraid of losing anything. He is completely able to drop what he is doing to follow hard after God.

Such is not the case of many Christians. They are hampered by what they own. They are afraid of losing the security their jobs give so they refuse to take the profession to which He has called. They are afraid of alienating their children so they refuse to go to the mission field. They want to have a new car so they borrow until they can't possibly tithe. Each thing they own ties them down. They have been made impotent with their possessions.

Many years ago I was part of a team which took a mission trip to Mexico. (I'll admit that we didn't know what we were doing.) We prayed and asked God what we should do. He told us to help in the construction of an orphanage. I went to a building supply to get an estimate as to what the cost would be.

The cost was $13,000. (This was 1978) We had nothing. It was one month before we were to go. Some pastors openly laughed at us when we explained what God had told us to do. These were pastors of churches that had a lot of big buildings and big budgets.

We prayed for twenty people to go on this trip. We prayed for $13,000 for building supplies. Neither of these happened.

One month later we had 104 people and over $40,000! Again, we didn't know what to do but we went. And God worked miracles.

Of course, we had a lot of money left over when we got back. Here came the wealthy church pastors to give us advice even though they had laughed at us when they thought we could never raise enough money. They told us that we should save the money until the next year as "seed money" for the next mission trip. We prayed and decided to spend it.

People had given this money to be used on missions. They did not expect it to merely sit in the bank. God had moved them to give. If God could do it once, He could do it again. We prayed hard and sent seventeen college students to do missions in Canada during the summer. And God did miracles again.

It was easy to follow after God because the money was really never ours to do with as we pleased. It always belonged to God. Even though we had everything we needed, we owned none of it.

The devil hates this. He can manipulate and control a person who owns things. He has very little control over someone who doesn't. He knows that God will supply everything a believer needs when he is doing God's will. He knows this person is extremely dangerous to him.

This concept is so foreign to most Christians that they cannot understand it. They can only see what can be lost.  But nothing can be lost when it doesn't belong to you.

Life is not in getting all you can; canning all you get and sitting on the can. Life is truly living for your Lord. In fact, He is not Lord if He is limited by what you possess.

Living is freedom. True freedom is to be able to do what the Lord requires of you at any moment.

It is having everything but owning nothing.

Matthew 10:37-39 (NIV) 37 "Anyone who loves his father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves his son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me; 38 and anyone who does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me. 39 Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.

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