I’m a parent of 3 beautiful children. Having kids is by far one of the greatest decisions that my wife and I have ever made.
Yesterday at breakfast I was struck again by a spiritual truth that came out of a regular conversation with my oldest son Caleb. His current flavor of the month breakfast is to have a bowl of corn flakes and some honey drizzled over the top (really a poor man’s crunchy nut corn flakes.) That morning however, I realized I’d run out of honey and had forgotten to mention it to my wife for our weekly shop which was done the day before. I had to break this to Caleb that he wouldn’t be able to have honey that morning on his cereal. What followed was a 4 year olds version of his world collapsing as he was unable to get what he wanted. I said to Caleb ‘Son I know you want honey, but I can’t give you something I don’t have.’
No sooner had that sentence left my lips I felt the urging of God saying the exact same thing to me. ‘MJ, you can only give people that which I have already done in you.’
After being in pastoral ministry for over a decade now (outside of radio work it’s been my only real “job”) I have to admit that too many times when I’ve come to preach or share leadership thoughts with my teams and I’ve found myself coming to God and his word for content to deliver rather than for transformation of myself or intimacy with God as the ultimate objective.
Before I teach it, preach it, tweet it, heck even blog about it I must ensure that I am transformed by it and living it
You can only draw water out of a well that’s already dwelling inside. So too we can only give out that which God has already done within us.
Lets not become mere professional Christians, rather let us live out and be transformed by God so that we can give out that which has been done within us.
Recently I was setting up my MacBook for youth & attempting to project the image from the computer to the screen. A pretty normal function and one I thought would be pretty simple task. However, somehow and God only knows (or a Mac expert) that the image from my computer began to project a completely different visual. I quickly became incredibly frustrated after several failed attempts to fix the projection problem. How hard can it be to take one thing and authentically project it somewhere else without anything being different.
In this moment (if I’m honest I was über close to using some words probably not uttered by a pastor in the church walls of Heathmont Baptist Church) I felt the voice of God speak to me saying “MJ you do this in your life too.” “What are you talking about” I said to God, I should by now know better to argue or question him on things.
God was gracious with me again and explained “isn’t it frustrating when the real picture isn’t shown but rather an imposter is projected? Well in the same way their are times where who you are projecting is not who you really are.” I felt immediately convicted and repented in that moment fully aware of my sin and also my own inadequacy. I know in my life when I feel inadequate or that I believe I’m not good enough these are the moments I’m most likely to project a performance image rather than the real image. In these times I need to learn to once again lean more onto God and put more of my trust in him and not myself.
We need to be accurately projecting who we really are and who Jesus is. People can spot a fake from a mile off, and also become quickly frustrated once they realise their is a difference between the real picture and what we are projecting. Don’t be who you think others think you should, but rather project an authentic image of who you are and who Jesus is.