“My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power, so that your faith might not rest on human wisdom, but on God’s power.” ~1 Cor 2:4-5
Paul was always conscious of God’s mighty power working in and through him. To him it would have been unthinkable to labour for God without that power. God’s working in and through him was far more important than him working for God. He laboured tirelessly because God worked in him so powerfully. To Paul the outworking was dependent upon God’s in-working. He could do for God only as God did in and through him. There is no other way to effective ministry. We are foolish to think that training, skill and experience provide an alternative to God’s power. There is no alternative.
Paul said, “I labour, struggling with all his energy which he so powerfully works in me” Col 1:29. Paul works to win everyone possible to Christ and to “present everyone perfect in Christ” (v28).
Are you more concerned to choose wise and persuasive words for your messages, your teaching or your words of counsel than you are to secure this “demonstration of the Spirit’s power?" To what extent has this “demonstration of the Spirit’s power” been your primary concern and experience this past year? What steps have you taken to experience this divine enabling?
--Wesley Duewel, paraphrased by Neville Bartle, New Zealand
Prayer: Father God, I want to do my best for You, but nothing of my effort can replace the power of Your Spirit to work in and through me. Forgive me for the ways I try to “help” You in my strength. Forgive me for times I try to speak for You before I have listened to You. Help me to rely more fully on Your Spirit’s power for all my ministry.