The Lord responded, “Go, for tomorrow I will give them into your hands.” Judges 20:28 

I’m having this complicated battle in my mind of whether I’m going to start my own small group or not. I’d been a part of a small group for almost 5 years and my mentor told me that maybe it is time for me to bear my own fruit in others and also to fulfill the great commission (Matthew 28:19-20 “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”).

“I have the desire to do so but I feel so unworthy, unqualified and unprepared.”  – this was just my so lame, inexcusable excuses over and over… but of course I recognize the importance of having an acceptable heart pleasing to the Lord in serving, what I want to tell here is I think my knowledge and wisdom is not good enough for me to lead other people.

But God made me realized something upon reading the book of Judges, wherein He commanded the Israelites to ” Go, for tomorrow I will give them into your hands.”

It reveals to me that when God says “GO”, we must have no other option but to go. When my mentor told me that I should start my own small group soon, I think that was also a way of God telling me to go. Before God commands us to do something, He already know our potentials and capabilities that’s why doubting on ourselves is a big “NO-NO”, aside God will be the one who will work in us, not in our own power but His, not with our own skills but through His grace alone. We don’t need to waste our time preparing our tons of baggage because it is Him who will take care of everything. What God wants is just our willing heart to submit and to obey and the rest is His.

I can see my weakness

But You are my strength.

I can see my unworthiness

But You have showed me Your grace 

 God, use me as Your instrument

Not mine but with Your strength

Not with myself but with Your power

Lord, let Your name be exalted forever…

Have you heard about the life of Jephthah? Well, if not, you can see his life in the book of Judges. Jephthah is son of Gilead from a prostitute. Among the member of his father’s house, he was the least adored and he has experienced how to be forsaken.

Jephthah the Gileadite was a mighty warrior. His father was Gilead; his mother was a prostitute. Gilead’s wife also bore him sons, and when they were grown up, they drove Jephthah away. “You are not going to get any inheritance in our family,” they said, “because you are the son of another woman.” So Jephthah fled from his brothers and settled in the land of Tob, where a gang of scoundrels gathered around him and followed him.  Judges 11:1-3

Being a part of a broken past, still, God used his life to lead Israelites in fight against Ammon. Some reacted with disappointment as he made a rash vow with the Lord.

And Jephthah made a vow to the Lord: “If you give the Ammonites into my hands, whatever comes out of the door of my house to meet me when I return in triumph from the Ammonites will be the Lord’s, and I will sacrifice it as a burnt offering.” Judges 11:30-31

When Jephthah returned to his home in Mizpah, who should come out to meet him but his daughter, dancing to the sound of timbrels! She was an only child. Except for her he had neither son nor daughter. When he saw her, he tore his clothes and cried, “Oh no, my daughter! You have brought me down and I am devastated. I have made a vow to the Lord that I cannot break.” Judges 11:34-35

Some of us think, if he didn’t made a vow maybe his daughter need not to die, that his daughter might have able to experience to live longer and have able to enjoy life even more. It made us to conclude that in our lives, we must be careful in taking vows, specially making vows with the Lord. Aside from that conclusion, let’s go to the other point of the story and let me say, the rhema that was revealed to me with this story.

I have experienced in my life wherein I declared that I am willing to surrender my everything to Him because that was I really wanted and ready to do for me to experience Him even more, to be more closer to Him, to be with Him. And I think, that overwhelming experience was the same of what Jephthah felt. He is really willing to offer God anything He would wanted.

Having the thought that I have already surrendered everything, my all in all to Him, there comes the rejoicing over the triumph, until God pointed on something that is in me, something that is in my pocket, something that I never thought He would also wanted, my precious ones. Jephthah never expected that what God wanted for him to offer is his one and only daughter, his precious one. He mourned and I can see that it was really painful for him but then, he still offered it to the Lord. In our lives, we do have special ones (or can be more), it could be a habit, a person, a thing etc. which we would never expect God wanted us to give up to Him. It would be painful but then we are still guarantee of God’s blessing through obedience. After Jephthah submitted to what God wanted him to do, God granted him the victory over all his enemy until he died, he was even buried in his own town who once forsook him.

Jephthah led Israel six years. Then Jephthah the Gileadite died and was buried in a town in Gilead. Judges 12:7

If God ask you to give up this precious one of yours unexpectedly, are you also willing to surrender it to Him?

-shine

At once they left their nets and followed Him… Matthew 4 :20

How willing are you to follow JESUS?

In my life, what I desire the most is to follow Jesus,  to be with Him wherever He goes and to desire whatever His Heart desires. Sounds interesting and inspiring, right? Knowing the joy that you could experience with Him is just so incomparable. BUT, in order for us to have that joy we’re talking about with Him, there is one thing He wants us to do,  a matter of faith, He wants us to leave everything and follow Him.

Like His disciples, God wants our willing heart to give up everything for Him. Without hesitations, Peter, Andrew, John and James left their nets, that net symbolizes their source of enjoyment, income and living, almost their lives.  God wants us to lose our life for Him in order for us to find it.

Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it. Matthew 10:39

For us to find the joy of following Him, we must leave everything behind, withholding no baggage.

How willing are you to follow Jesus? Are you so willing to the point that you, for His sake, will leave everything behind?

Lord, You know the desires of my heart, You know how I love to do Your will, Give me a willing heart to give up and let go of everything that I’m holding back for the sake of YOU…

He has filled them with skill to do all kings of work as craftmen, designer, embroiderers in blue, purple and scarlet yarn and fine linen, and weavers – all of them master craftsmen and designer. Exodus 35:35

God created everyone of us with a gift. We can never make an excuse of not serving Him because one way or another we have skills that we can offer Him. God created us with that gift so that we may give glory to Him with it.
Before, I was a person of low self-esteem. I used to think that I’m unimportant, an average person ineverything, doesn’t have a specialskill where I’m good at unlike others. That thought hinders me from serving God, that thought of with orwithout me there will be no difference because I’m worthless.
God made me realized that those thoughts are so wrong, so so wrong. I was deceived by the devil’s voice.
Right now, I decided to commit myself to Him, through His grace, nothing and noone can stop me now from serving Jesus.

Do not make any gods to be alongside me; do not make for yourselves gods of silver or gods of golds. Exodus 20:23

It is clearly stated, God doesn’t want us to have any other gods in our lives. If we are committing more times with a certain kind of thing or person than our time with God (like praying, devotions, thoughts, attending church service ahd studying His Words), it’s time for us to assess ourselves, Our we already building some little gods in our lives?
I feel so guilty about this. Though I’m not literally worshipping statues or gods, there are times wherein, I’m setting aside God before worldly stuff and I think that kind is just the same thing with the other. Our priority in life determines what or to whom we are living for. So let it be, through God’s grace, do everything for the glory of Him and for Him. Those things (or can be person)that we have right now are gifts from God but let’s still focus on Him. Let His blessing gives us joy in our heart but not more than the joy that we can feel in His presence.

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