Faithful Servants Needed!
In Luke 12, Jesus tells a parable about a faithful and a wicked servant.
And the Lord said, “Who then is that faithful and wise steward, whom his master will make ruler over his household, to give them their portion of food in due season? Blessed is that servant whom his master will find so doing when he comes. Truly, I say to you that he will make him ruler over all that he has. But if that servant says in his heart, ‘My master is delaying his coming,’ and begins to beat the male and female servants, and to eat and drink and be drunk, the master of that servant will come on a day when he is not looking for him, and at an hour when he is not aware, and will cut him in two and appoint him his portion with the unbelievers. And that servant who knew his master’s will, and did not prepare himself or do according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes. But he who did not know, yet committed things deserving of stripes, shall be beaten with few. For everyone to whom much is given, from him much will be required; and to whom much has been committed, of him they will ask the more. Luke 12:42-48 NKJV
The faithful servant obeyed, operated in his dominion gift and was commended. The faithless servant obeyed and operated in his dominion gift until delay came. Then he started to abuse the other servants, either directly or indirectly through neglect. He stopped being faithful. His character had not been changed; his obedience was based on the reward not on representing his master appropriately. If he knew when the master was coming, he wouldn’t have become sloppy. He would have persevered. We can’t stop doing the right thing when no one is looking. We must persevere, knowing that hope never disappoints (see Romans 5 and 1 Peter 1). If we will not be faithful with what God has given us, the Master will come and take away what He has given and give it to someone who will make good use of it.
Matthew 7:13-14 states: “enter by the narrow gate… there are few that find it.” Going through a narrow gate or place of transition always brings us out to a broad place. Those who try to hold on to the past are destined to die.
During transition we must be faithful to what God has called us to do. Our character is being shaped so we can operate in the next place. The work God is completing in our character must be completed before we can enter the new place. There is a space between where we were and where God is taking us. I call this place, “the adjustment warfare zone”. It is where you are wandering and wondering what happened. Something has just changed.
When a woman gets pregnant, she is usually pregnant several weeks before she knows it. Transition took place at conception. All adjustments begin after a woman becomes aware that a new baby is on the way. Modifications in diet and activity are examples of personal adjustments. All of the accommodations, from preparing a nursery to purchasing all of the necessary items needed in the care of a newborn, are a part of the adjustment. Considerable sacrifice generally is required as choices are made to prepare for new life.
Many of us are in the process of transition. We are in the thrust of transition concerning occupation, housing, or family. What captured our focus previously, whether a job or relationship, will not be a part of our future. An adjustment must be made. We must leave the old to embrace the new. An entire generation died in the wilderness because they were unwilling to change and would not adjust. There are many today who are also trying to cling to the past. We must leave the old. We have to adjust to move into what God wants to bring in our future. God has had great purpose in our wilderness. In the wilderness, He has dealt with mindsets, immaturity, emotions, and all ungodly soul-ties.
Hindrances to Entering Our Promised Land
Oftentimes, it is ungodly soul-ties with something or someone that prevent us from advancing. The Israelites were so “tied” to Egypt, they would not enter into God’s full promises. Ungodly relationships form one of the worst hindrances to fully entering God’s purpose for our lives. If we want to fully serve the Lord, we need to stay single. Why? 1 Corinthians 7 encourages the single life, unless we find that one person who is totally devoted to what God has also called us to be and to do. We will be judged for what God has purposed and planned for us at the judgment seat of Christ. By marrying out of loneliness, sexual frustration, etc, we have chosen to disobey the Bible. Once we are married, God says that marriage covenant takes precedence over all others. If we are married to someone who is not called to our purpose, we will probably end up never fulfilling it! But, we will still have to give an account before God for the gifting, calling and graces….
This is the most important season in the history of the world and in the history of our lives. We must make adjustments in this time of transition. Ungodly soul-ties to something or someone are one of the main reasons people don’t enter into God’s plan or purpose. If we make the adjustments God is asking for, then we will enter the inheritance and walk in the fullness of our dominion gift.
Today, there is a tug-of-war over us! The Lord is moving us towards Himself; He is offering us eternal life through His kingdom. The enemy is trying to pull us back to earthly concerns; this includes what is good and what is not. If we focus on the things of this world, we lose sight of the life God is offering us. Two principle soul-ties prevent people from making necessary transitions from living for this life which is passing away and laying hold of what is everlasting, eternal life.
This includes attitudes such as holding offenses, resentments, attachment to carnal things, submitting to fear, continuing in ungodly relationships and “unsanctified” mercy. Many of these are self-explanatory and require self-examination to allow the Holy Spirit to reveal what changes God requires. I will take a moment to explain “unsanctified mercy.”
Unsanctified mercy is when we have mercy on someone or something for which God does not have mercy. It is wrong, and it is ungodly. Let me provide an example. Suppose a young adult shoplifts and is arrested and placed in jail. The parents bail out their child and as the child recounts their fears of what it was like to be in jail, the parents start comforting their child. Mercy was extended when they bailed them out of jail. The inappropriate behavior and conduct needs to be addressed. People need the truth in love. They need to repent. To comfort someone when they need confrontation and discipline is to operate in unsanctified mercy. Otherwise, they will remain carnal and never enter their purpose. When we comfort people with whom the Holy Spirit is dealing, etc, we possibly become a tool used by the devil to prevent another from entering into their dominion gift (Matt. 16:23). They need to die to self, so they die to wrong thinking. There must be a clear leaving of the old. They need to struggle, to have the cross applied so they can become free from bondage. There must be a clear leaving of the old nature to enter into the new.
Many have sentimental attachments to legitimate relationships and attitudes. A generation ago, it was common to refer to your spouse as your soul-mate. We have a legitimate soul-tie to our mate. However, many times we remain attached to people, places and things that God used powerfully in the past. We needed those ties in the last season, or when we were immature. God may now require you to separate yourself from a soul-tie in your past. We cannot mourn over past relationships. For example, Samuel continued to mourn over Saul after the Lord had rejected him (1 Sam. 16:1). God was ready to move on and Samuel needed to adjust. God wanted Samuel to anoint David as King. Samuel had to press on with God’s plan. We can no longer remain sentimentally attached to someone or something that is not a part of our life now. We must enter into the fullness of God. When God writes “finished” over something, it’s finished. Many times, we try to bring it with us or resurrect it. We must come to realize that others, who have been a part of our past, aren’t coming with us. This is part of understanding the “kindness and severity” of God. There must be a clear, defined leaving. Even Jesus had to sever ungodly soul-ties when his “legitimate” earthly family tried to exercise illegitimate authority over him. Jesus said it this way:
And he answered them, saying, “Who is my mother, or my brethren?” And he looked round about on them which sat about him, and said, “Behold my mother and my brethren! For whosoever shall do the will of God, the same is my brother, and my sister, and mother.” Mark 3:33-35 KJV
When we choose to do what is right, those who will not come with us now will eventually remember our righteous choice. The memory of our choice may one day save them. Jesus made that clear His entire life. We must love God above all. We can’t be His disciple if we put anyone or anything else before Him. When transition comes, all the relationships must adjust with the road signs.
Passing through transition requires focus and resolve. We must determine in our heart, “I’m going where God is going.” Transition always precedes the fulfillment of destiny. There are many languishing in the wilderness because they refuse to make the transition. We must make the decision to change our minds and attitudes to inherit the promise. The choice to attain our destiny is in our hands! My prayer is that we choose wisely.