Blog In Audio:
As leaders we must grow in the compassion of Christ to lead others to do the same. Who we are and what we do is not about ministry, it is about love for God and love for people. It is because of love that we minister life to others. That love is not merely to meet the needs of people. It is a love that reconnects people to the One who is love that their lives might also be a testimony of life and love for others.
Proverbs 10:15 The rich man’s wealth is his strong city; the destruction of the poor is their poverty. 16 The labor of the righteous leads to life, the wages of the wicked to sin. 17 He who keeps instruction is in the way of life, but he who refuses correction goes astray.
The destruction of the poor is their poverty. Poverty is not just lacking things in life. It is a lack of knowing who one is. Unless the beliefs of our hearts are changed, the thinking of our minds cannot be changed. Unless the thinking of our minds is changed, the actions of our lives cannot change. Unless the actions of our lives change the imagination of our hearts cannot be loosed to create a world we have not seen before. Unless the imaginations of hearts are changed, we will not see a change in our influence upon our world. As leaders we love others to heal and transform the beliefs of their hearts that they will not be destroyed by their poverty again.
There are many kinds of riches. There are the riches of things, but merely the riches of things will eventually lead to poverty. True riches of life are to be rich with love. To be a good steward with the things of this world is to be a good steward of love for the sake of others. It is not what we have that makes us rich. It is what we do with what we have that makes us truly rich. True righteousness is not a matter of being right. It is a matter of a right relationship with God who is love. A right relationship with Him will give us a right relationship with others from within us. That right relationship will inspire us to give of who we are for the sake of others.
God’s instruction and correction in our lives is not so we will do right things or walk in right ways. His direction to us in life concerns who we are. As leaders we live to be sons and daughters of God and we lead to see others in our world discover the truth of who God sees them to be from His view from heaven. We lead to help others see God and to see themselves as He sees them. We lead to help them see themselves that they might see others in their world and live to give the life and love of God to them. In this there is a willingness in us all to follow the path of life that God puts before us. We invite His correction to our path when we deviate from the true path of life.
God wants us to be aware of human needs and He wants us to be moved by compassion. That compassion is a love for people, even as God loves them. Jesus, as a man, was moved by the compassion of His heart to bring deliverance, healing, and life to those He encountered in His path in life. He lived with compassion, but He lived for a greater purpose for all who were in need. God heard the cry of the children of Israel when they were enslaved in Egypt. The cry of the people in their bondage moved God’s heart to send Moses to deliver them from their slavery, but He also sent Moses to lead them to a place of discovering who God is and who they were for His purpose in their world. Moses spent forty years in the wilderness with a people who cried to God from their place of need that there might be a new generation of people who lived for the future of the world. Those people would no longer live for their needs in life to be met. They would live for the will of God to be done and His heavenly influence to come to the world that they possessed.
God hears the cry of those who are enslaved in this world, and He desires to set them free from their bondages of death. God doesn’t just hear the cry of their human needs. He hears the cry of their human destiny. As leaders we don’t just lead to meet the needs of others, we lead to help them see their destiny in Christ. It is not merely a matter of knowing what God wants us to do. It is a matter of knowing God. What we do will not reveal to us who we are but knowing who God is and who we are will empower us to know what to do.
Isaiah 61:1 “The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon Me, because the LORD has anointed Me to preach good tidings to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound; 2 to proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn, 3 to console those who mourn in Zion, to give them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they may be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that He may be glorified.”
It is with compassion that God comes to give good news to those in poverty. It is with His love that He heals broken hearts and gives freedom to those who were bound in some form of captivity. It is with His love that He opens prison doors, restores inheritances, and defeats all our enemies. His heart is moved with compassion to comfort those who mourn, to restore human beauty, give us back our joy, and clothe us in His work of praise. It is with His compassionate love that He does all these things but is for His purpose of our knowing His love and becoming His love for our world that He does them. God wants to plant us as evergreen trees of righteousness in our world. He wants us to live for Him and for one another in the compassion and love of our hearts. Leaders live to know this, be this, and to lead others into this path of life-giving inheritance. As trees of righteousness our leaves will bring healing to the nations of our world and the fruit of our lives will be ripe to give life to those in our world in every season of our path in His glory.
Food For Thought,
Ted J. Hanson
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