As a prince in Egypt, Moses knew what to do when he saw the oppression of the Israelites. He sought to deliver his people when he murdered the Egyptian. In his heart he knew what to do, but he had to become who he was meant to be before he could be entrusted with task. He had to know that God’s purpose cannot be fulfilled without God’s presence in his life. His forty years in the wilderness was about becoming who he needed to be in order to deliver God’s people. It was not about knowing what to do. He needed an encounter with God, more than he needed instructions from God. He had to lose his old life and find it new!
Who we are precedes the ‘what to do’s’ in our lives. Leaders are God’s gift to lead others into becoming who they are meant to be in Christ, not merely what to do in life. How many times do congregation members measure their leaders based on whether they think they know what they are doing or not? How many times do we all measure others based upon whether we think they know what they are doing or not? Leadership is more about becoming than it is doing. Membership is more about embracing becoming what we are being led to become than what we are being led to do.
What we are becoming is determined by the kingdom of God within us. God’s expression in our hearts transforms who we are for a greater purpose than ourselves. God’s voice in our hearts transforms us for the purpose of the kingdom of God. The kingdom of God isn’t about the things we see or the things we do. It is about who we are by the power of Christ at work within our hearts and minds.
Luke 17:20 Now when He was asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, He answered them and said, “The kingdom of God does not come with observation; 21 nor will they say, ‘See here!’ or ‘See there!’ For indeed, the kingdom of God is within you.”
The kingdom of God is not a natural kingdom, but when we discover the kingdom of God within us it affects even the practical things of our lives. The kingdom of God is within our hearts. It is a kingdom of knowing righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit.
Romans 14:17 for the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.
These three internal realities are all about knowing who God is. It is not enough to know that God is, we must know who God is. God is the Son, Jesus; God is the Spirit, Holy Spirit; and God is the Father. He is the one who gives us life, breath, and all things. He want us to know Him in the reality of His triune reality. Jesus is the one who saves us. He is our righteousness. Christ in us reveals the testimony of being children of God because of Jesus our Savior in all things. He is our way to a relationship with God. He is our righteousness. From our hearts we now know that God is our God! Holy Spirit in our lives is the testimony that there is no gap between us and God. We are growing and overcoming sons and daughters of God. We have peace in the Holy Spirit. We are sons and daughters of God! The evidence is both internal and external in our lives. God is our Father and He is with us in all things. In His presence is the fullness of joy. That joy is in the internal place of the heart. It is joy in the Holy Spirit. Joy is not just happiness. Joy is the fullness of God’s focus, purpose, and destiny in our lives. God is the one who gives us all things. We live with Him in all things. God wants us to know who God is! It is a growing reality that makes us live as children, sons, and fathers in an intimate relationship with Him!
Hebrews 12:25-28 See to it that you do not refuse Him who is speaking. For if those did not escape when they refused him who warned them on earth, much less will we escape who turn away from Him who warns from heaven. 26 And His voice shook the earth then, but now He has promised, saying, “Yet once more I will shake not only the earth, but also the heaven.” 27 This expression, “Yet once more,” denotes the removing of those things which can be shaken, as of created things, so that those things which cannot be shaken may remain. 28 Therefore, since we receive a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us show gratitude, by which we may offer to God an acceptable service with reverence and awe; 29 for our God is a consuming fire.
The unshakable kingdom is who you are, not what you do. Who you are determines how you do every ‘what to do’ in life. Moses had to encounter the God of fire in the bush. He had to become consumed with the passion, zeal, and purpose of God in His heart. He needed an encounter with God as his God. He needed to know that there was no separation between him and God. He needed to know that God and him lived together in all things. Moses needed a transformation by the life-giving God of heaven in order to lead God’s people into that same encounter in life. The deliverance of Israel from Egypt was more about becoming the testimony of the children of God upon the earth than about being freed from Egypt. Being freed from a life of sin is only the invitation to become an expression of God’s life-giving people upon the earth. God wants us to become heaven powered from within. When we are empowered from within, we can do all things without.
Food For Thought,
Ted J. Hanson