Summary: Let the Creator of the universe work through you and always find you faithful and available. “And have a fervent love for one another."
In church lately we have devoted a lot of time talking and learning about David, the man after God’s own heart. We have discussed how David prepared for the many opportunities and challenges he would face. Throughout his entire life, David spent time in prayer, seeking God’s guidance and direction for his life. In fact, it was during those times in his life when he was distant from God that David made bad choices and mistakes. But David knew what was most important. He knew that communion with God was paramount. His knowledge of the scriptures supported his desire and need to seek God in all aspects of his life.
We talked about abilities. What abilities do you have that God can use? If you were present in church, we learned that the abilities that God can use are not always the ones we think He can use. Yes, we’ve all been blessed with gifts and talents. Paul talks about spiritual gifts in his letter to the Corinthians. We know that our gifts are different, and we know that our gifts are to be used to glorify God and edify His people. I love to sing and I can carry a tune most of the time, but don’t put a hammer in my hand and ask me to build something. So God uses our gifts and our talents, but He is looking for something much more important in all of our lives. I believe that God is mainly looking for three abilities in each of us.
The first ability is dependability. Are we dependable in serving our Lord? Can God count on each of us to be faithful in our desire to serve? Can we be trusted in doing the work He has asked us to do? If we are dependable, we can be used by God at any given moment, in any place, at any time, according to His purpose. I once read about some fatherly advice given to a son, “Be so dependable that if you say you will be somewhere and don’t show up, they’ll send flowers.”
The second ability is reliability. Are we always reliable in our service? A good definition of reliability is one who is able to give the same results on successive trials. When you think of one who is reliable, you have complete confidence that that person can be trusted to do exactly what has been asked of them, every time. Does God see this in you?
And the third ability and I believe the most important of all in God’s eyes is availability. Are we available? Being available is to be present and ready for immediate use. Nothing gets in the way. Nothing becomes more important than the task at hand. God is looking for people who are available and ready for immediate use. Edward McCabe, Archbishop of Dublin in the late 1800’s once said, “The world is a better place as a result of Michelangelo not having said. ‘I don’t do ceilings.’“ In our Wednesday night Bible Study, we are just finishing the Old Testament book of Judges. As we read throughout this book, God was on a constant search for people who would do His work, who would become leaders, and who would further the kingdom of God. Up to this point God was able to use powerful Godly individuals like Abraham, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, Joshua and many others. But in the book of Judges, no one person was appointed. So over the course of about 450 years, God appointed a handful of Judges to rule over the chosen nation of Israel. According to Warren Wiersbe, former Pastor of Chicago’s Memorial Church, in his commentary on the book of Judges, the single challenge throughout, was finding people who were available. Simply available. Not gifted. Not extraordinary. Just faithful and available.
Throughout both the Old and New Testament, we find accounts of men and women who were used by God for His purpose in His kingdom. We read how God used these people and worked in their lives, and generally we do not read about great skill, intellect or physical attributes. God used them just the way they were. And these great men and women of the Bible were all entirely different. Read about Samuel and Daniel, about Paul and Peter, about Ruth and Hannah, about the woman at the well, and about the Samaritan who cared. How were these people used? They were dependable, reliable and they were available.
How do we make sure we are always dependable, reliable and available? Through constant prayer and daily reading of the scriptures. Martin Luther once said “I have so much to do that I must spend the first three hours of each day in prayer.” According to Billy Graham, the three secrets to successful ministry are; prayer, prayer and more prayer. I have read that during the Apollo missions to the moon, the spaceships were off course more than 90% of the time. Yet through constant and continual communication with Mission Control, they were always able to make the necessary corrections. Applying this principle to our lives, we too are off course most of the time. But through prayer, by staying in constant contact with God, He can make the corrections and point us in the direction He wants in our daily lives.