God is up to something! If you have been around me very much in the last several months, you have heard me say this over and over again. If you have read my blog (which by the way I have not been very prolific in writing lately) you have read this statement more than once. I truly believe that God is doing a work in the lives of many of His people at Southside as evidenced by the renewed interest in prayer and in witnessing. Well, at least those are the two things that God has impressed on my heart to share with our church, and it seems that people are embracing them. We have gone through a Prayer Boot Camp followed by an 8 week study of “The Battle Plan for Prayer.” Now we are in the midst of and evangelism revival called “Every Believer a Witness” during our morning worship services. And I must tell you, last Sunday was one of the most joyful services we have experienced at Southside in a very long time capped off with an invitation that bore fruit for the Kingdom. Yes, God is up to something.
But can I be just a little bit confessional this morning? God is up to something in this pastor’s life. Every morning for several weeks now He has awakened me very early – sometimes at 4:30 and sometimes He has allowed me to sleep as late as 5:30 – and called me to prayer. I have spent some very sweet times in prayer for my family, for my church, for my nation, and for myself. I have felt God changing my heart and the world around me. I have seen my own reactions to circumstances changing. I have felt a renewed passion form ministry, preaching, and witnessing. And God has given me opportunities to witness like I haven’t seen in a very long time. Or maybe I haven’t paid attention to them in a very long time.
You see, in this evangelism revival, Dennis Nunn reminds us that every believer is a witness. Well, actually, Jesus is the one who reminded us of that. In every gospel. In the book of Acts. He said it. “You (speaking to Christians) will by my witnesses.” This isn’t a choice that we can make, but somehow we have decided it is optional. Can you imagine being called as a witness in a trial, being sworn in, taking your place on the witness stand, and sitting there as the attorney questions you, and not saying a word. When the judge orders you to answer, you explain, “I’m letting my lifestyle speak for me.” It won’t work. Our lifestyles can only do so much. It is the gospel that has the power of salvation. The gospel that says Jesus died on the cross of Calvary for our sins but didn’t stay dead. The gospel that says He paid the price for our sins so that we didn’t have to, but then God raised Him from the dead to prove that He has the power to raise us to a new life – a life of holiness and peace. A life free from the power and penalty of sin. And no matter how much we may want to demonstrate that through the way we live, we can’t do that. We must tell the world. We should WANT to tell the world.
So let me tell you that God is up to something in my life and in our church. Should you come to Southside over the next 5 weeks, you are going to learn how to share the gospel by sharing what Jesus has done in your life. You are going to learn how to deepen your prayer life. And you are going to learn what it means to have an “I Will” kind of attitude. Don’t know what that means? Join us this Sunday night and find out.