December 2018 Newsletter - "The Harvesters - Are You Just a Levite?" by Ray McDowell
What does it mean to be a minister of the Lord? This is the question that we all ask ourselves as evangelists. Obviously, our goal is to reach people in whatever way the Lord would see fit. Of course, we want to see people give their hearts to Him. We all want to hear from Father those timely words that speak directly into someone’s situation and release change in their lives. However, ask yourself this question: Can we be so focused on ministering to people and saying the right thing that we neglect the ministry that we are truly called to?
Religion teaches us to “do.” “Do” this many Hail Marys, and you will earn God’s love and acceptance. Relationship transforms us into “be-ing,” and the “doing” is Him (super)naturally flowing through us. Our focus must always be on knowing Him first, otherwise we can be doing dead works through our own strength. Something that we must ask in every undertaking is “Is this what He wants me to do?” There are many good things that we can do, but if it’s not exactly what He wants from us, then it’s possible that our efforts are not actually good at all. Saul, anyone?
The pattern seems to be that when we first begin to step out in evangelism, it’s all about just going and doing it. You’re afraid to talk to this person? Good, do it anyway and watch the Lord show up. You don’t have anything to say? Start a conversation regardless. You don’t know enough scripture? Perfect. The Lord will speak through you and use situations to reveal the areas you need to grow in. It is truly an amazing thing to see that the privilege of being able to bless someone else also carries the fringe benefit of a massive boost to your own faith. We choose to trust that the Lord is leading us when we approach a stranger against our own logical objections, and He shows up in the situation in such a mighty way! It’s these repeated experiences that bring us into a place of submission and willingness to approach anyone as well as a much keener sense of the Lord’s guidance in our daily lives. This is a great and necessary place to start, but Yah is continually teaching us new things.
Father has been really giving us much more specific direction, and it has enabled us to be more effective. Instead of knocking on every door, now He has been sending us to only certain ones. What an incredible thing to show up in a neighborhood and spend two hours witnessing to one person because you skipped every other house and knocked on the door of someone who was crying out for God earlier that day!
This brings us to the crux of our message for this month, fresh from the oven. The Lord spoke to us in the briefing room prior to our engagement on the battlefield. “Minister to Me, and I will bring the people to you.” It seemed rather outlandish, but the vision He gave us for the day was to simply show up at the local swap meet and worship Him. So, we ventured out and flew in under the radar with our instruments of auditory warfare and nested in a space preordained for us by the Lord. Initially, we were all struggling with the pressure to make something happen. Our thoughts were, “We’ve got to talk to people” and “Let’s just do our evangelistic duty and go round up some souls to minister to.” It’s not the first time that this has happened. When He directs us in a new strategy, He will sometimes allow us to see the futility of trying to do things out of our religious ways before reminding us of the game plan. We reassembled and refocused, and as the team began to unite in ministering to the Lord in our worship, people immediately began to be drawn to us. Divine appointments were set up for us that day, and it was truly amazing to see the presence of God drawing the hungry in such a way.
What we would like to share with our brethren is this: Don’t forget the focus of your ministry. Levites serve the people, but Priests and High Priests are given access to a realm of intimacy with Yahweh where we can minister to Him and be much more effective in our dealings with people. Wherever our position in the army, let us do what we have been called to, unto Him first. He is bringing our entire body to a place of rest in Him where we no longer do things on our own strength and striving. Deeper intimacy with Him will make ministry like a string of set dominoes falling in succession as He works through us.