Summary: Growing in Christ.
Preparation For Promotion Part 1: Test of Trust
Ephesians 4:13-15 “…until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ. Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of men in their deceitful scheming. Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will in all things grow up into Him who is the Head, that is, Christ.” (NIV)
This will be our foundational Scripture in this series. In these verses, it is clear that we are expected to grow in Christ and with that growth become more stable, not being tossed around with every storm that will come our way. So in this series I will focus on your “promotion”, where you come to be mature, leaving your infant stage behind. The title of this series is “Preparation for Promotion.” How many of you are aware that God has a desire to “promote” you? Well in case you did not know, He does. In this series we will cover several “tests” that you will face as you are being groomed for your promotion. But I want to make one thing perfectly clear – the promotion that God has for you is for you and you only. God’s promotion is nothing like the promotions we receive on our jobs where we are competing against everyone else. In those situations “the best man or woman” may or may not get the promotion depending on the circumstances and what is going on in that environment. However, with God’s promotion, the promotion is already yours. No one else can do what God has planned for you. You are currently in the preparatory stage getting ready for the promotion. When you are ready, God will promote you. The other thing to keep in mind is that our promotions will be private. Others will see after we have begun to operate differently, but there will be no emails, large announcements or publications from God detailing our “new position”. This will be between God and us individually. Finally you may not see it coming. One day you will notice that you are acting different from your past – more confidence, assurance and understanding about things happening in your life. But eventually you and others will see that you have been “promoted”.
Webster’s dictionary defines promote as “to raise to a higher position or rank; and to further the growth or establishment of.” The second part of the definition says that to promote someone or some thing means to “further the growth or establishment of.” Not only does God desire to bring us into a position of increased responsibility based on our willingness and desire to serve Him, He is also focused on our continued growth and establishment as we are moving towards the place He has for us. When I think of how He does this, Proverbs 18:16 comes to mind. In this verse, Solomon says that “A man’s gift makes room for him and brings him before great men.” One interpretation of what Solomon was referencing pertained to a bribe and how people can bribe their way into the presence of someone greater than themselves. However, I want you to look a little deeper at this. Everything that God has placed within us is for the body of Christ. Whatever our talents, gifts and abilities, we are to use them to further His Kingdom. When God is actively promoting us, one of the things that He does is bring us into the presence of others where our gifts can be utilized and sometimes even appreciated.