God has been gracious to me again this week, as Pat was healed of bronchitis and I received a positive doctors visit. I was able to attend two brother meetings and that is always great. God gifted me with the privilege of watching my youngest son Charles Loftin receive an Excellent Student Award from Catawba Valley Community College. God is God!
Jesus has made it a point this week to entice me into giving special thought to the term “networking”. He (Jesus) took the time some years ago to show me the foolishness in building and securing such strongholds as denominational boundaries. Most of us (God’s people) have the great privilege to travel anywhere on earth that we desire and spread the gospel. It may not be completely legal or wanted but it is possible with God! Our only limitation is our faith in God!
Jesus began showing me today’s subject at a breakfast gathering we (my wife Pat and I) attended at the Foothills House of Hope, in Hickory, NC last Saturday when Pastor Larry Curtis impressed me the writings of John. Pastor Larry grew up in Hickory, NC. and his beautiful wife Janis in England. They serve in Birmingham, England and brother Larry was sharing insight on what the transition was like. During his sharing he used John 14:11-12 (NLT), 11 Just believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me. Or at least believe because of the work you have seen me do. 12 “I tell you the truth, anyone who believes in me will do the same works I have done, and even greater works, because I am going to be with the Father. Now I thought that I understood this passage until Larry elaborated on, I will do greater works than Jesus. At this point he commanded my full attention and I gave it to him! He went on to read John 14:15-16 (NLT), 15 “If you love me, obey my commandments. 16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, who will never leave you. The Holy Spirit is placed within each of us that love and follow in the way of Jesus. Ergo, just as Jesus, I am one, you are one and this world is full of one’s. (Think on that for a moment!)
Then again Thursday evening, God gave me confirmation on this subject at our Brother Night North Meeting in Granite Falls, NC. Speaker Randy Turner used John 14: in conjunction with Philippians 2:12-13 (NLT), 12- Dear friends, you always followed my instructions when I was with you. And now that I am away, it is even more important. Work hard to show the results of your salvation, obeying God with deep reverence and fear. 13- For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him, in his testimony. The subject matter was slightly different, but the message was the same. God’s Holy Spirit is living in us and working hard to help us follow Jesus!
The word God gave me as soon as I heard this sharing was networking. So, to validate my thinking I sought out the definition in Dictionary.com; networking, a supportive system of sharing information and services among individuals and groups having a common interest. The bible tells us in, Mark 3:13-14 (NLT), 13- Afterward Jesus went up on a mountain and called out the ones he wanted to go with him. And they came to him. 14- Then he appointed twelve of them and called them his apostles. They were to accompany him, and he would send them out to preach. God created networking, when He had Jesus select His 12 disciples. I have no clue as to how many followers Jesus had at that time, but it is obvious that He wanted them all on the same page. These 12 men would do life with Jesus, learning every minute of the day and at the appointed time, they were sent out to preach and carry the message of Jesus directly to the people. Jesus multiplied His voice 12 times who then used God’s insight and direction to cover more territory and reach more people.
All this is fascinating but common knowledge as it is preached a lot in most churches and is taught in many Sunday School Lessons. However, what seem to be missing in the common knowledge arena, is Jesus replicated God’s system of multiplication when He asked God to send those that love Him a helper, named the Holy Spirit. John 14:26 (NLT), But when the Father sends the Advocate as my representative that is, the Holy Spirit he will teach you everything and will remind you of everything I have told you. God through the Holy Spirit multiplied the teaching of Jesus hundreds to thousands of times back then, to an unfathomable number today. Each receiving the Holy Spirit which came with a particular skill sets designed to interlock with each other to create one massive network. Allowing for John 14:12 “even greater works” to be accomplished! Jesus increased His territory and is currently working around the world through those whom He resides with in.
The question for each Jesus follower is; are we allowing the Holy Spirit to network completely in gaining the coverage He desires or are we a dead spot breaking His connectivity? As my pastor says; “everyone you meet knows something or someone that you don’t!” Let’s get to networking and learn things.
My prayer this week is simply that we appreciate the privilege God has given us. 2 Corinthians 5:18-21 (NLT), 18 And all of this is a gift from God, who brought us back to himself through Christ. And God has given us this task of reconciling people to him. 19 For God was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself, no longer counting people’s sins against them. And he gave us this wonderful message of reconciliation. 20 So we are Christ’s ambassadors; God is making his appeal through us. We speak for Christ when we plead, “Come back to God!” 21 For God made Christ, who never sinned, to be the offering for our sin, so that we could be made right with God through Christ.
HAVE A BLESSED WEEK BY BEING A BLESSING TO OTHERS!