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But all things are from God, Who through Jesus Christ reconciled us to Himself [received us into favor, brought us into harmony with Himself] and gave to us the ministry of reconciliation [that by word and deed we might aim to bring others into harmony with Him.
(2 Cor. 5:18 Amp)

How easy it is to slip into the mindset that our sole purpose on earth is to have a happy life and enjoy God’s blessings! How easy it is to get so content in our own salvation that we forget that’s not all God has in mind for us. If it were, He would have taken us straight to heaven the moment we were born again. He would have caught us up to His throne room as soon as we received Jesus as Lord so we could live happily ever after in His presence.

But He didn’t do that.

He left us here on this sin-ridden planet because He has a job for us to do.  He has a ministry for each one of us to carry out. He left us here on planet earth so that we could live in such a way that—by word and deed—we bring others into relationship with Him.

In other words, He left us here to finish the ministry of reconciliation that Jesus began.

That’s a staggering thought, isn’t it? It almost makes us want to throw our hands in the air and say, “I can’t do it! I don’t have what it takes!”

And it’s true. On our own, we don’t.

Oh sure, we can roll up our spiritual sleeves and go to work trying to win the world for Jesus. But we won’t get very far, because in ourselves, we don’t have the resources to get the job done. We don’t know what to pray, what to say, where to go, or what to do to effectively reach the billions that are still living in spiritual darkness. It’s an overwhelming task!

How, then, are we supposed to do it?

Second Corinthians 5:15 reveals the secret. It says that Jesus “died for all, so that all those who live might live no longer to and for themselves, but to and for Him…” (Amp). Notice, we’re supposed to live to God (or in fellowship with Him) before endeavoring to live for Him. To succeed in our ministry of reconciliation, we must go to Him before we reach out to others because He alone has the wisdom and divine might to light up this whole planet with the Gospel. He alone can generate the life-giving power the nations so desperately need.

That’s why He has invited us to come boldly every day to His throne of grace. That’s why He has promised that as we draw near to Him, He will draw near to us. In those times of fellowship, His life-generating power flows into us in abundance and equips us to go forth and—by words and deeds—light up the world with His life.

As we fellowship with Him, we receive what we need to live for Him. In His presence, we find the power to finish the work He has called us to do.

Scripture Reading: 2 Corinthians 5:14–21

Source: Devotions for the Praying Heart by Lynne Hammond.
Excerpt permission granted by Lynne Hammond Ministries

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