September 3 Devotional

How much of our time is spent trying to impress other people with our intelligence, our skill, our wisdom, our experience, or how much money we have?  The answer is, too much time!  As a believer, we should do all we can to lift our God up, and to put ourselves out of the picture.  Today I read Paul’s words to the church in Corinth.  This statement Paul made always brings me back to reality.  He wrote … “And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power: that your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God” (I Corinthians 2:4-5).

 

Be very careful of what Paul spoke about here.  If we are not careful we can fall into this very trap of trying to impress others.  Think about it for a moment; what motivates this kind of thinking?  The answer is that it is our pride that drives this desire within us.  Our pride is the enemy of God’s grace.  Our pride will always promote us (and eventually our sinfulness) and will demote God from the place of prominence in our life.  Pride will destroy any hope of living in a godly fashion in an ungodly society.

 

Paul makes it clear that his desire was not to depend upon his own wisdom, or even the wisdom of those who appeared to be so wise that he would meet.  His desire was simple to show the power of the Holy Spirit in his own life to those who were watching the way he behaved in this world.  His heart’s desire was to show this power so that other people could build up their faith.  He was not trying to prop them up with some fancy way of talking that would “tickle” their ears.  He wanted his life to be so controlled by the Holy Spirit that when he would testify, it would be evident that God was in control.  I hear so many folks today arguing about a specific usage of a word, rather than thinking about the substance of what they are saying.  One of the most powerful men in my life was a man who spoke so simply that any child would have been able to understand what he was saying.  That is the goal I have for the times I am preaching/teaching.  I want the power of the message not to be in the words I choose to use, but in the obvious leading of the Holy Spirit.  I want to be hidden behind the Holy Spirit when I have the chance to counsel, teach, or preach to others.  Today God will place opportunities in your path for you to make a difference in the life of someone else.  Will you try to impress … or will you hide your life in Him and let Him minister?

 

To make a message simple is hard.” – Ted Camp