Serving God by grace – Part 2
Many Christians may not know it, but fear, especially of events that are yet to occur, is one of the greatest threats to their spiritual life. Fear renders grace and gifts inactive. It silences or deadens the use of most believers’ spiritual gifts. But “God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.”
Salvation, righteousness, intelligence, vision, passion, purpose to achieve, the power of the Holy Ghost, the ability to remember and not be discouraged are gifts of God. However, they can be paralysed by fear. We receive the gifts of God through grace for service and usefulness. Timothy received the gift of salvation, righteousness and the divine nature; and he became fruitful in service.
We must not allow the grace and love of God in us to be dormant. We must not lose our gift of righteousness among relatives, friends or colleagues for fear of what they will say. If we are fearful, the gift of passion for souls will be stifled. Our voice will become silent and the gift will become impotent and rendered useless. Fear will make us hide our knowledge and ability. It paralyses the heart and causes failure. Irrespective of the prevailing situation, the Lord wants us to be determined to overcome fear and take our stand.
God has given us gifts to make us reign over every circumstance. Our possession of grace implies we have gifts. Although we may not have the same gifts, the combination of our gifts helps us fulfil the will of God and expand His Kingdom. “Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith; Or ministry, let us wait on our ministering: or he that teacheth, on teaching; Or he that exhorteth, on exhortation: he that giveth, let him do it with simplicity; he that ruleth, with diligence; he that sheweth mercy, with cheerfulness.”
As believers, we should not neglect the gift of knowledge, the Spirit, righteousness, the grace of God and the natural gifts that we have. We should dislodge fear from our heart, soul, mind and thought, because the cord of fear binds the hands, feet, brain, heart, soul and sight. No matter how talented, knowledgeable or determined a believer is, when fear sets in, he becomes incapacitated.
Fear hinders us from doing the will of God – preaching the Word, touching the lives of people around us, standing against corruption and evil. But if we get rid of fear, we will be enabled to climb every mountain, get to the zenith of our profession and move on in life in spite of obstacles. “And many of the brethren in the Lord, waxing confident by my bonds, are much more bold to speak the word without fear.”
Paul the Apostle was not ashamed of the gospel of Christ. Against all odds, he preached the gospel in its fullness. Therefore, he counseled Timothy thus: “Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God”. As believers, we should not be “ashamed of the gospel of Christ” that brought the good news of our salvation, redemption, deliverance and victory. With God’s grace and gifts in us, we should be bold and make use of every opportunity to preach the gospel like Apostle Paul. He affirmed, “according to my earnest expectation and my hope, that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but that with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether it be by life, or by death”. If we are truly committed to bringing the fullness of the life-changing gospel to sinners, we shall shine “as the stars for ever and ever.”
Further Reading (King James Version): 2 Timothy 1:6-12; John 3:8; Acts 22:6-10; Galatians 1:21-24; 2 Corinthians 12:1-6,9; Philippians 1:21-25; 2 Timothy 1:9,10; 1 Timothy 1:14-16; Titus 2:11-14; 2 Corinthians 6:1; Galatians 2:21,20; Hebrews 12:15; 1 Peter 1:13-16; 5:5-9; Ephesians 4:29-32; 2 Timothy 1:6,7; Romans 5:17; 23:6-8; 1 Timothy 4:14-16; Romans 8:14-17; Philippians 1:14; 2 Timothy 1:8,12; Romans 1:16; Philippians 1:20,21; Daniel 12:2,3.
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