February 24, 2014

Revelation 3:8 “I know your deeds. See, I have placed before you an open door that no one can shut. I know that you have little strength, yet you have kept my word and have not denied my name.”

It struck me as I read this that the content of the letters to the seven churches can be applied to individuals as well as to churches. This enormously encouraging verse should be taken to heart by every genuinely faithful believer who feels overwhelmed by circumstances, weak indeed. The reference to “only a little strength” certainly rings a bell! The point is, God desires love and faithfulness more than what we would call “accomplishments.” He desires to use some individuals and some churches in what we would call “great” things, but He desires to use others in much quieter roles. The point is, we aren’t to complain at what the Lord has laid out for us, but seek to press into Him in faithful obedience whatever it means. We aren’t to back off from anything, big or small, but know that God will provide whatever it will take to accomplish – or simply get through – whatever it is. If we will do that because of our love for Him, then we will indeed find that we face an open door that no one can shut, just as He promises here.

Yesterday was an interesting experience. I felt bad physically from a cold, yet I don’t know that I’ve ever preached with more power. I had had some difficulty singing during the praise and worship time because of the cold, yet when I started preaching, even I was surprised at the strength of my voice. I guess that was an object lesson in what the Lord told Paul in 2 Corinthians 12:9, that His power is made perfect in weakness. I will happily be weak, for God’s power to be manifested through me! The challenge then becomes realizing how little power I have even when I don’t feel weak. The Lord made it clear to me a while back that mentally I am no better than a newborn infant compared to Him, regardless of what anyone thinks of my intellect. The same thing applies to strength. The moment I think I can do something on my own, I cut Him out of the loop, and I’m done for. I need to rejoice in being nothing so that He can be everything, for His glory.

Father, thank You for this insight. I get the strong feeling it’s going to be really important. I have had the clear impression that You have big plans for us this year. Keep me from thinking even for a moment that I can do any of it without You. I know some things that are on the calendar, but I can’t begin to know all that You have planned. Help me walk in loving faithfulness through every moment, whether those moments seem big or small, so that Your plans may be fulfilled on Your schedule for Your glory. Thank You. Hallelujah!

About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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