God’s Main Project

Recently, I have been praying, “Lord, use me more to change the world.” And that’s the reason why I scamper from one evangelistic project to another.

I regularly preach to five prayer groups/communities; a book due for release this year; a weekly radio program to maintain; in the process of setting up a healing ministry; conceptualizing the establishment of a school of evangelism; and several other commitments to meet — all billed as God’s projects.   

Some weeks back, though, I fell into one of those days when nothing seemed to go right — a challenging situation in the ministry, some family concerns, and a host of other little irritants.

It is in moments like those — when your heart, not just your body, is tired — that one is led to complain. I questioned God’s plans. I doubted God’s will. I double-guessed God’s ways.

“Lord,” I said “Why do you allow these challenges to come my way? These things divert me from taking care of your projects. These irritants…they impede my work in the projects that we have.”

Looking back, though, I realized a very important learning:

Maybe God is more concerned, not in using me to change the world, but in using the world, with all its imperfections, to change me. Maybe God isn’t so much interested in what He will do THROUGH me compared to what He will do IN me. Really, I think He is more concerned not so much in what I do but in who I become. 

Perhaps God’s main project is not so much the communities and prayer groups that I am setting up, or the radio program that I have, or the ministries and schools that I am establishing.

God’s main project is me.

Here’s good news: God’s main project is you too!

No wonder He allows little irritants to pester your life. Perhaps that’s the reason why sometimes you find it difficult to meet your deadlines, or pay your bills, or deal with your family. Probably that explains why that promotion hasn’t come yet or that business has yet to take off. You see, if God wants to rid your life of challenges, He surely can. But the question is: Should He?

You are God’s main project. To make you more loving. More kind. More faithful. More patient. More trusting. Yes, more holy. And believe me, He will do all He can to make His project succeed.

I remain,

Bobby Q.

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Pure Obedience

When your business does not yield profits, you decide to close it down, right?  But what about your relationship with God?

Many people follow God because they expect to be blessed. Many sermons speak of a generous God who is not outdone in generosity. Quite a number of spiritual books describe a God who returns a hundredfold what we offer to Him. I, as a preacher, even catch myself often exhorting people to follow God because they will surely receive His countless favors.

While all of these are generally true, sometimes over-emphasis on the rewards of obedience gives us a wrong picture of what it means to really follow God. Somehow, people’s focus is diverted from obeying God because they love Him to obeying God because of the rewards. As a result, we deal with God not in the context of a loving relationship but in the context of a business venture, meaning — for profit. 

At the beginning of this Lenten season, I have been led often in my prayer time to confront myself with this very challenging question: If God doesn’t bless me, will I still obey Him?

What if God allows my bank account to get depleted? Or I find it difficult to pay my bills? Or I get sick? Or my ministry falters? Or my relationships suffer?

If God’s promises remain unfulfilled, will I still obey Him the way I am obeying Him now?

Tough question.

My resolve is threatened. My convictions shaken. My heart shudders at the thought  of obeying God out of pure obedience.

But that’s the line that separates those who follow for the sake of profits from those who follow for the sake of love.

Are you following God for some time now and you have yet to see His promises fufilled? Are you tempted to turn back? Is the cost of obedience too high to pay? Is God not worth the pain?

Think again. This Lenten Season might be the best time to check your motives. Obey God for the sake of God. That is pure obedience. And for those who sincerly want to follow God, it’s the only obedience we ought to know.

A blessed Lenten Season to all of you!

I remain,

Bobby