A GOD-CENTERED PERSPECTIVE
The Spirit told Philip, “Go to that chariot and stay near it.”
God is always at work. He’s on mission. What we call missions is simply God finding people whose hearts are spiritually prepared and placing them where they can make a difference for His kingdom. Some of the great missionaries in history didn’t live long lives, but their lives dramatically affected eternity.
For example, God had Philip’s attention, and the Book of Acts gives the exciting account of how He used Philip’s life to take the gospel to the ends of the earth. Philip was powerfully preaching in the city of Samaria (see Acts 8:5-8). God used him so mightily that the entire city rejoiced at the miracles God was doing. This would be any evangelist’s fondest desire: to see an entire city responding to the gospel through his preaching. Yet Philip wasn’t activity-centered in his Christian life. He was God-centered. Philip wasn’t preoccupied with expanding his reputation as a great preacher or miracle worker. He was concerned that his life remain in the center of God’s activity.
When God instructed Philip to leave his fruitful ministry in Samaria, he didn’t hesitate (see vv. 26-40). He was prepared. He was attentive. He experienced God by joining the mainstream of God’s activity.
God continues to seek those as responsive as Philip to go on mission with Him. The reason God’s movement isn’t evident in more places today isn’t that He’s unable or unwilling to work. He first looks for those willing to have their lives radically adjusted away from their self-centered activities and placed in the center of God’s activity around the world.
A God-centered perspective is the key to being spiritually prepared for God’s work. If you’re spiritually prepared when a crisis comes, you won’t have to try to instantly develop the quality of relationship with Christ that can sustain you. If you have a God-centered focus and suddenly have an opportunity to share your faith with an unbeliever, you’ll be equipped to do so. If you enter a time of worship spiritually prepared, you won’t miss an encounter with God. If you’re spiritually filled when you meet a person in sorrow, you’ll have much to offer. If you’ve established safeguards in your life in advance, you won’t give in to temptation.
Christians lose many opportunities to experience God’s activity because they haven’t devoted enough time to their relationship with God. If you haven’t yet developed the habit of daily prayer and Bible study, why not begin now so that you’ll be spiritually equipped for whatever life brings?
How are you developing a God-centered perspective, spiritually preparing yourself to join God’s work? Identify a time and a place in your daily routine that you can spend in prayer and Bible reading.
Identify an area of your life that’s going well. What does it mean to have a God-centered perspective in that area of your life?
Identify an area of your life that’s currently difficult. What does it mean to have a God-centered perspective in that area of your life?
What was the most meaningful statement or Scripture you read today?
Reword the statement or Scripture into a prayer of response to God.
What does God want you to do in response to today’s study? [Henry T. Blackaby, Richard Blackaby (2014). Seven Realities for Experiencing God – Member Book. LifeWay Press. Retrieved from https://read.lifeway.com]