Friday, October 22, 2010

One Idea Can Save Lives - REALLY!


Here is a statue near Niagara Falls of Nikola Tesla who invented a lot of stuff. I've blogged about him before. This statue, however, was designed to communicate one event in his life when, in January 1881, he was walking with a friend in a city park in Budapest, Hungary. Without warning, he had a vision concerning a design he had been struggling with for an electric motor. In that moment of insight, an idea came to him which he quickly drew in the sand with a stick (hence the stick in the statue). That design would late be the basis for the AC (alternating current) motor which some have said is among the 10 most important inventions of all time (hence the big AC motor in the statue!)! He went on to invent 700 more inventions, including AC electrical current! Your life would be VERY dark if Tesla had not lived!

Now stick with me here. Wednesday night I challenged my church members at prayer meeting to get alone with our Father in prayer and ask Him, "what is ONE thing I can do that I am not currently doing to add to the health of the church as the Body of Christ?" Lately, I've been reminded of the power of the ONE thing when two of our older Sunday School classes decided to start a "little" project of collecting and selling scrap metal to buy fresh water wells in impoverished countries. More people die daily from unsanitary water than any other reason! Some of our kids have helped out in the collection effort, too! In less than a year, they have collected enough money ($10,000) to dig three wells! They then continued the drive to raise money for a much-needed piano for the sanctuary and carpet for our nursery...ALL FROM ONE IDEA!

So, what ONE thing can you do to impact your church and your world for Christ? Don't underestimate the power of one idea! It was one idea that gave us electrical power in our homes; and another idea turned junk into water for those who need it most! So, go ahead, pray and let God ignite your imagination! Then watch out....something's going to happen!!!


WHAT IS JUST ONE THING YOU CAN DO TO MAKE OUR CHURCH FAMILY HEALTHIER? Here’s an exercise that might help you to understand. Inhale…but DON’T exhale…inhale some more….but DON’T exhale…inhale some more…but DON’T exhale! Now how long could you keep that up? Eventually your body would force you to exhale, because the body needs to take air in, but it also needs to get air out. If you keep breathing in and holding your breath, eventually you’d pass out and your body would force the issue.

Erwin McManus, pastor of Mosaic Church in Los Angeles, used this illustration in a sermon I recently heard to drive home an important point about the danger of always taking in the blessings of God without ever passing them on to others, especially to those who don’t know Christ. For the Body of Christ to be healthy, each part must breathe in spiritual nourishment (Bible study, worship, discipleship, fellowship) and breath out blessings on others (through evangelism and ministry). With a year of higher than normal losses of members who have gone to be with the Lord, and with the continuing tendency of the young to move out of Denmark after graduation, it is more important than ever that we pay attention to the health of our church family.

Last night I challenged those in our Wednesday night prayer meeting (By the way, you’re missing some mighty fine fellowship if you’re missing Wednesday nights!) to ask themselves, “what ONE thing can I do to contribute to the health of my church family?” This is not something you need to share with me, but something you need to get on knees about with our Father. Each of us need to ask Him, “Father what do you want me to do to bless the Body of Christ here in Denmark?”

I have been amazed by what a simple idea like collecting scrap metal has done for our fellowship. Less than a year after our Dessie Stedman and Jim Tant Sunday School classes started this simple project, we have enough money for up to three wells to bring life and health (and an opportunity to hear the gospel!) to possibly thousands of people. Enough money has been collected also to help buy our new piano, and to put toward new carpet in the daycare. That is the power of just one “what can I do to help” idea. What idea is waiting in your mind? What idea is our Father waiting to put into action in your life to bless our church family that we might be a blessing and witness to the people of our community and even the world?

As I said Wednesday night, Christ did not die so we could sit in the stands like fans at a football game yelling our instructions to the team on the field as to how WE want them to play the game for OUR enjoyment. No, Christ died so that we could be on the field, and share in the victory. And this is NO game, but a war with very high stakes…literally the souls of man. No expense was spared to rescue those thirty-three Chilean miners last week, and Chile and the world agreed that an estimated one million dollars per miner as a cost of the rescue attempt was not too high. If that is true, what should each of us be willing to sacrifice or willing to do to join our Father’s Spirit as He is on a rescue mission, convicting and drawing people to Christ. No joy can compare with the victory of being a part of someone coming to know Christ, and you can’t get that joy from sitting in the stands.

So seek the gifts our Father wants to give you, but remember Paul’s instruction in 1 Corinthians 14:12: “Since you are eager to have spiritual gifts, try to excel in gifts that build up the church.” If you love our church family, I implore you to pray earnestly to the Father to show you, to empower you, and to equip you to do that ONE thing you’re not doing to contribute to the health of His church here in Denmark. If God can save thousands of people through the one idea of turning scrap metal into clean water, what is He waiting to do through you?