Ministry can be overwhelming at times. There is no possible way that I can get everything done that needs to be done. I may not be able to do everything, but I can always do the next thing that Jesus asks of me.
In Mark 1:17 Jesus said to the disciples, “Follow Me, and I will make you become fishers of men” (NKJV). What if Jesus had shown the disciples everything that would be asked of them from that point on? They probably would have said, “No thanks!” Well, Jesus didn't, and the disciples left everything and immediately followed Him. Their answer of “yes” would lead to a lifetime of following Jesus into amazing opportunities.
Recently, our oldest son was overwhelmed with his list of things to do and pay for. School and truck repairs topped a list that ran several items deep. When he came to us for advice, we simply reminded him that, because he had already put God first, he needed to prioritize and just take care of the next thing on the list. Eventually, he was able to take care of everything needed.
Similarly, in life and ministry, I often have to remind myself that I'm not overwhelmed by circumstances; I am actually underwhelmed with how awesome God is. He really is so much more wonderful than we can imagine. How can I be awestruck by anything else? What I need is to be like the disciples and follow Him in whatever He asks next.
For the past three years, our church has been heavily involved with helping establish a national Foursquare work in Niger. This is a 96 percent Muslim country that is consistently on the bottom of the Human Development Index. We come up against every imaginable need there is, many at the same time. It can be staggering, but, as Jesus leads and we follow, we have seen God move supernaturally and His kingdom extend so beautifully in this desert land.
There are 18 million people in Niger, and most of them have never heard the gospel. Instead of being paralyzed by this and not knowing what do, we just ask Jesus to show us the next thing on His list.
A good friend once told me, “Scott, when you don't know what to do, do what you know to do.” This to me means to humble myself, pray and listen for the Master’s next question. He is always faithful to His Word. He can be trusted in every situation. As we follow, He is making us to become what He has called and commissioned us to be.
Take a moment right now to prayerfully commit to follow Him no matter what. Then ask Jesus what He wants you to do next.
Please pray for Niger. No matter how desperate things look on the surface, the single greatest need there, and everywhere, is still the gospel. Pray that our leaders there will follow Jesus in all things. And please pray that you also will be able to follow Jesus to the next “yes.”
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