Immediately before Christ ascended into Heaven, He commissioned His followers to spread the Kingdom:
All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age (Matthew 28:18–20).
Many Christians are rightly passionate about fulfilling this incredible mandate from Jesus. We should be driven to share the gospel with those who need to hear it. We should be compelled to love as Christ loves.
The problem is when we make the Great Commission more important than our personal intimacy with God.
Many believers have these two foundations of life with God out of order, and because of this, they are trying to fulfill the Great Commission on their own strength, without first being filled to overflowing with God’s love. The truth is, if we have not yet experienced the life-changing love of God and received healing in our hearts, from the inside out, we are incapable of truly loving others. To give real love, we first must be filled with that love from
When I first became a Christian, because of my inner pain, I was terrified of receiving ministry or love from others, let alone from God. Even the idea of it made me feel terribly vulnerable; so instead,
I busied myself serving. After all, if I was the one serving, I didn’t need to worry about someone trying to minister to me. I used the busyness of ministry—helping others, building programs, making sandwiches Jesus didn’t order—to keep a lid on my bottled-up pain.
Like me, people who live this way become exhausted, weary, and bored. We can only travel so far on empty. Over the years since my personal encounter with God’s love, I have had the privilege of coming alongside many individuals, couples, and ministry leaders from all over the country.
Like me, they had been serving fervently for years without realizing they were missing a key piece of their inheritance as a child of God. They didn’t know about the Father’s heart, His love, and His power. They didn’t know they could have a relationship with all three members of the Godhead. Some of them were tight with Jesus, but they didn’t know the Father. Some knew the Father but believed He was distant.
For some, the Holy Spirit wasn’t even on their radar. They had no idea they could be “filled to the measure of all the fullness of God” (Eph. 3:19). But once they encountered Father God and tasted His love, everything changed. The weariness and need to perform left, and they were finally free and able to receive God’s love and also to serve people with the overflow of that love.
This is an excerpt from my new book Loved Like Jesus.
I wrote it because I want you to experience the deep love that your heavenly Father has for you. Living from this reality as a much loved son or daughter, you can rest in a confident connection with Him and experience abundant living and lasting freedom.
Order my book today for yourself and an extra copy for a friend, your pastor and/or your small group.