We’re back home now. This was my first trip to Slovakia. Here are the two main things God spoke to me about.
One I expected something big, but received something humbling instead. How so? Well first, some background about my loud spring. I was diagnosed with breast cancer in March and then watched The Lord fully remove it in a marvelous way. During this same time I watched my consulting job dwindle down to nothing, only to be led very specifically to an amazing new job (that I start this morning).
After such big events that God orchestrated so perfectly, I headed to Slovakia thinking something really big must be about to happen to me there, as well. Of course, my idea of big is that I’m the star of the show, you know, like BIG for me: I had cancer, I was cured, I got a cool new job. I was surprised by the quiet voice that just spoke to me instead. God pointed me specifically to Ephesians 2:8-9, and these words: “… and this is not from yourselves: it is the gift of God– not by works, so that no one can boast!” God said to me, “What I will do with you here is not about you, it is about what I want to do here. Do you understand?” God reminded me that all of the marvelous good this year came from Him and His Spirit, not from me. The cancer, the cure, the removal of a job, the provision of an amazing new job, the extreme peace that carried us through all of this: all had been gifts from God. The only thing He wanted me to do was proclaim how amazingly good He has been.
“For you are God’s handiwork…” We’re the product of his work, not ours. Our job is simply to talk about what He has done, as He makes opportunity.
Two Matthew 9:37-38: Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.” To be perfectly honest, this passage never made any sense to me. Isn’t Jesus The Lord of the harvest? And therefore, why is he speaking about himself in the third person and even more importantly, why are we praying that The Lord of the Harvest send out more workers into HIS harvest field? If He’s Lord of this job, then He already knows he needs more workers. He doesn’t need me to tell Him.
This has always been my whole problem with prayer: it doesn’t make sense to me. God knows all this stuff already, so why do I need to tell Him? And he always has done a great job of taking care of me, so I certainly don’t need to beg, either. I’m good with what’s going on here! (Maybe I should start by asking for more than this pea-brain I’ve been given?) Anyway, there’s at least one reason I can think of for Jesus’ prayer request: I need to start thinking and speaking God’s heart and thoughts with my own brain and lips. Perhaps His heart will rub off on me a little and I will be moved to think about someone besides myself for a change.
While over there, we heard about how Communism had severely damaged the church and how now, in this time of freedom, when things should be getting better, the church is still struggling for its life. In the US, we could all recite how the years of Capitalism have severely damaged the church and how, in this time of freedom, when things should be getting better, the church (more than ever?) is struggling for its life. Seems the problems are universal.
Right after his prayer request, in the next verse, Jesus sent out his disciples with great power and authority, authorizing them to heal the sick and cast out demons and proclaim his kingdom and (to their amazement) that’s exactly what happened– miracles through them. The world needs workers like that: who allow God to work in all of His amazing, miraculous strength, who let God do His work and get out of the way.
Ask The Lord of the Harvest to send out workers. I need to finally pay attention and start doing this with all my heart.