I love David Eldridge & the message he delivers about living out the plans that God has for each of us. Most of his sermons point back to this idea, but the "wine & wineskins" series really helped me, as did some friends who could tell me the truth about what they saw in me that God had planted there.
It's a grace that God gives - the way He made each of us & the passions He placed in each heart.
I am constantly amazed as I watch people responding to the overwhelming love from our Heavenly Father. When it really comes into focus. That we cannot pay Him back. We cannot do anything to earn our way.
Not people who are emotionallay manipulated into something.
Not guilted into caring for something.
Not following the crowd.
But the genuine reponse to Him.
Just loving Him back.
Because almost everyone I know is passionate about something.
-some have lost loved ones to diseases - and if everyone in the world would give a little maybe we could erradicate that particular disease.
-some are passionate about getting people off the street & if we would all put our time & resources together we could help people get jobs & earning a living with dignity.
-for many, myself included, it's the orphan crisis in this world - children w/o families for so many different reasons & if we would all stand up & welcome someone into our home or equip those childrens' families with the resources they need we could "fix" it
-and for some it is walking with the elderly - and if we would all give of our time & reach out we could be a friend & hear the stories of a generation that in some cases is being left behind.
-recognizing the need for high school students to understand clearly how valuable they are in the eyes of God when they are faced with everything around them telling them they're not. And if we would each take some time & be intentional to know these kids then they would see their value & know that they are loved by the God of the universe.
And it's not solely about linking arms with the people who agree with our heartbeat & leaving the others behind - I believe it's about encouraging one another in these works.
And it's not about fixing the problem - because if we could fix it then we would have no need for a Savior.
And it can't be out of guilted obligation because then we're no better than the pharisee believing that we can be good enough to earn His approval.
I believe it's simply about responding to Him, to His love, and watching the loving face of God paint His picture of redemption through His people.
And here's the guarantee - when you respond to the purpose He has for your life it will mean saying no to many other really great things.
It is so good to share our passions. And it is so good to encourage one another.
But it would be against God's beautiful design to encourage someone to walk a path that God never laid out for them to begin with.
I love seeing people live out those purposes. I am so energized when I see people moving forward in their call.
Not trying to make it the call for everyone else.
But embracing their God-given journey, walking with others placed in the path beside them & shouting encouraging words towards those placed along other paths.
It's being the body of Christ.