Working Hard to Stop Working So Hard

I’m Working Hard to Stopping Working So Hard, So I Can See God Work. Is that confusing? Let me try to explain…

As a pastor, I am obsessed with transformation!

There are few things that get me as excited as seeing Jesus at work bringing authentic change into the hearts and minds of people! Of course, any change in a person’s heart and mind will result in a change of their behaviour too! I am inspired by the desire to help this process along however I can.

For me, then, this particular part of my motivation can easily result in some serious frustration: you see, I’m still learning that I can’t change anyone! No matter how hard I might work to change people, I end up frustrating myself and other people (just ask my kidsJ). The truth is, if Jesus isn’t the One doing the changing, it’s better I don’t get involve at all.

I’m learning to increase my hope factor, and raise my expectations to believe God will work in ways I can’t!

Jesus really meant what He said:  I am the vine; you are the branches. The one who remains in Me and I in him produces much fruit, because you can do nothing without Me. (John 15:5)

To step back and allow Jesus to work starts when I’m praying and asking Him to do what only He can do! All the while, I’m constantly reminding myself that I am not the one responsible for change in people’s lives: Jesus is! Whenever I figure I’m somehow responsible, I open myself up for disappointment—because I focus on people’s behaviour and outward circumstances, and not on Jesus.

When authentic change does occur, though, then Jesus gets all the credit—because I’ve been expecting Him to do His work! I love how Paul instills this increased expectation of God’s ability to work in the lives of people as hope.

Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you believe in Him so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit (Romans 15:13)