It's amazing how many times your mind gets blown at the "coincidences" you experience when you serve a supernatural God. Time and time again I am floored with the way situations and circumstances in my everyday seem to align with the things that I feel God whispers to me through His Holy Spirit when I give enough breathing room to allow Him to speak to me. God has a way of teaching you a principle (or principles) through His Word right before you step into a season of life where you are forced to live it out. It's like you know this spiritual principle in your head as a theory, then God gives you an opportunity to faithfully live it out as a reality. The principle moves quickly from being in your mind only as head-knowledge, to deep into your heart as a spiritual truth that validates the power of God moving in and through our life drawing us closer to a relationship of complete and utter dependence on the love of Jesus Christ.

 

God gives you the opportunity to turn a theory living in your mind into a reality dwelling in your heart

 

This particular story is just one small instance that I'd like to share with you.

 

Not long after I began writing the Keys to Finishing What You Start series we had a change in the Creative team I help lead at the church I serve at, losing a key full-time staff member. The change in personnel meant that responsibilities were delegated out and we all stepped up to work extra hours to ensure that the quality of the offering we were bringing to the Lord each weekend in our worship services was the very best we could bring. It was draining. (It still is). The hours were long. Days off were becoming fewer and time away from the computer or phone sending emails were shorter. My wife and family were patient, understanding, and supportive - knowing that sometimes making the right decision doesn't always mean things would be easy. Things were hitting a point were something needed to give or I knew I wasn't going to make it much longer in the ministry position I knew God had opened up for me to step into. I knew I wasn't going to survive....

 

Then one Monday morning after a very long Sunday at church, I took a walk around my neighborhood to spend time speaking to the Lord about all that was on my heart. It was during this time of spilling out my heart to Him that I heard Holy Spirit speak to me saying, "Just keep walking. Keep walking straight." I felt encouraged that the Lord was letting me know that even though things were tough currently, that the path I was taking was the right one and not to give up. I was exactly where the Lord wanted me to be and was doing what He wanted me to do.

 

"Just keep walking. Keep walking straight."

 

Not long after I remembered the Keys To Finishing What You Start series that I had written which the Lord had taught me recently. I read the series again. But this time I read through these principles not as a writer or critiquing my work as an editor, but as a minister who needed to hear the words of encouragement for himself.

 

I remembered about the story of the priests and their ordination process we see in Leviticus 8. I remembered that God appoints each of us into a position of ministry to stand before Him and His people, filling us up with His Spirit to do His work. I remembered that ministry requires sacrifice and repentance - a life well-lived exhausted willingly for the cause of Christ to see people saved into His loving arms. I remembered that ministry might get messy and that things you wear close to you might become stained with Christ's blood and the Spirit's anointing. And I remembered that there is a process that needs to be completed in His timing.

 

It was time that these words moved from mere principles my head and became God-given truths that sink deep down into my heart.

 

God has a way of teaching you a principle through His Word right before you step into a season of life where you are forced to live it out

 

I know this season isn't finished yet. I know there's more hard work and long hours ahead. But I know that I'm walking down the right path as I follow the Lord.

 

I pray I will look back on this season of hard work and sacrifice in 20, 30, 40 years time and be thankful that the Lord has shown me what I need to know for sure in my heart what is required to leave a legacy of ministry that lasts throughout the ages. I want to not only survive, but thrive in ministry as I continue to walk in the way the Lord has shown me.

 

This has been a little of my story lately. I pray that it might be an encouragement to you to keep walking along the path the Lord has set for you.

 

What has the Lord shown you that motivates you to continue to run your race with perseverance as you serve in ministry?