Monday, July 1, 2013

Not To Us


“But the Lord said to Samuel, ‘Do not look at his appearance of physical stature, because I have refused him. For [the Lord does] not [see] as man sees; for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”

When it comes to Kingdom work, God is more concerned with the heart of the individual rather than their aptitude or appearance. Man looks at the man from the outside and judges him to be the perfect fit for the job by what he sees with his eyes.

This was true when God was seeking a new King to replace Saul. In Samuel 16:6-7, Samuel was certain that Eliab, son of Jesse, was the one to be anointed the next King of Israel, but God was looking at something deeper. In fact, none of Jesse’s sons were chosen who were present. Samuel finally asked Jesse if there were any other sons. One was left he said, his youngest; a ruddy, bright eyed, good looking shepherd who was considered the least of his sons.

One would look at David perhaps and scoff at the selection today. “You’ve got to be kidding. This kid is going to be the King of Israel? He doesn’t even look like a King. He’s just a shepherd boy.” But none the less, he was called to come before Samuel, and it was only then that the Lord told Samuel to arise and anoint the young man standing before him (Samuel 16:8-12).  

This was demonstrated over and over again in the Old and New Testaments. Just look at Jesus’ disciples, they weren’t what one would expect would be chosen to represent Jesus after His Resurrection. They were seen as common, uneducated, and lower class in their society. 

“Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated and untrained men, they marveled. And they realized that they had been with Jesus” (Acts 4:13). 

They marveled because they didn’t see mere men at work but the presence of God.


“Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me? The words that I speak to you I do not speak on My own [authority]; But the Father who dwells in Me and does the works (John 14:10)

In Isaiah 55:8-9, it reads that God’s ways are not our ways, nor are His thoughts our thoughts. God seeks a humble and a contrite spirit to work through (Isaiah 57:15). He does not seek a boastful man to do His good works; someone who is focused more on their achievements and themselves rather than God’s work in them. They would be of little use to Him. May your boasting be in the Lord, it says in Psalms 34:2 and 49:8. Jesus Himself pointed to the Father when it came to the works He did here on earth and recognized that it was being done because of the Father in Him, and He gave the glory to the father.

“Then the Lord put forth His hand and touched my mouth, and the Lord said to me, ‘Behold, I have put my words in your mouth’” (Jeremiah 1:9-10).

When God called Jeremiah to be a prophet to His people Israel, he felt incompetent to complete the task God asked him to do. He stated that he was just a child. Isn’t that how we all feel when we are asked to do something beyond our ability? We feel overwhelmed, scared, and insecure just like a child would feel if asked to do something beyond their capacity. But we can’t let fear stop us from answering God's call on our lives because God doesn’t let what we can’t do keep Him from doing what He can

Jeremiah’s lack of trust in his ability did not keep God from using him powerfully. He told Jeremiah that He would place the words in His mouth. “Don’t worry I’ve got this. All you have to do is be available.” Don’t discount what God can do in your life because of your lack of ability because that has never held God back when it comes to kingdom work. If we are to be the Lord’s workmanship, then we need to yield to His leading. Jesus relinquished His will to the Father. God wants us to do the same. Even if you have the abilities, God still is the authority by which we perform it.

 “…Not by might, nor by power, but by My Spirit,’ Says the Lord of hosts.” Zechariah 4:6

The authority by which God’s good work is done through us comes by His Spirit in us. Jesus said that, “I am in the Father and the Father is in Me.” Before Jesus left this earth He said that He would send a Helper and that the works Jesus did we will also do, and even greater, because He goes to the Father (John 14:12). I believe this is because His Spirit dwells in us and He is able to reach the many than when He was in the flesh. He could only get to the few while on this earth as His humanly body could carry Him, but by Him dwelling is each of us, through the Holy Spirit (“…He dwells with you and will be in you” John 14:17), that work is multiplied. The helper emboldens us to speak and do the work that has been commissioned for us to do. We of ourselves have no power, but we are sent forth with the Heavenly authority that overcomes this world. 

“I brought glory to you here on earth by completing the work you have given me to do.” John 17:4

“…That the Father may be glorified in the Son” (John 14:13).

Not to us, O Lord, Not to us, but to your name goes all the glory for your unfailing love and faithfulness” (Psalm 115:1 NLT).

It was Jesus who did the hard part. It is because of Him that we have Salvation. It was the Father’s and Son’s unfailing love and faithfulness that we are able to enter into the Most Holy Place. It is only by His blood that we have access to the heaven throne. Then why would we ever want to take His glory?

We are the instrument by which He performs His work through. It is important that we understand that we are the tool by which God does His work. We are the instrument by which He does the cutting away, the building, the healing, and the restoration. I can’t imagine a more honorable position to be in than His hands. If we can grasp this amazing fact, then there leaves no room for uncertainty of our abilities and fear. It’s not to us that the glory belongs in the first place. It’s to Him who does His work through us. We just need to open ourselves up to the power of the Holy Spirit to get the job done. On the day of Pentecost, the Spirit came upon the disciples, and they were empowered with boldness. Jesus gives us our boldness when He is living in us. We just need to learn to yield to His leading. If we shrug away from His call on our lives, then we are doing Him a dishonor. When we accepted Christ as our Savior, we relinquished our lives for His. Our lives for what He desired to do in us…with us.

Let us then bring glory to God by completing the work He has called us to while we are here on earth, and may Jesus be glorified in our bodies. Let us be a living sacrifice which is our reasonable service (Romans 12:1).  Let not what you can’t do keep Him from doing what He can.