Keith Giles is an author, blogger and freelance copywriter in Orange County, California.
WHAT IS SUBVERSIVE? It’s a systematic overthrow of one system or power by those working from within.
Jesus said the Kingdom of God was immediately accessible to all who follow Him. This is the Gospel message. This is subversive.
Monday, July 01, 2013
It was one of those moments where the Holy Spirit gives you
the words to say at just the right moment.
I was on vacation with my family when the text came up on my
cell phone. A friend of mine had a house church that needed some advice about
something they were struggling with. As I listened to the person speak to me
about the challenges the group was facing I whispered a prayer under my breath
for help. What hope could I offer her? What wisdom could I share? I was drawing
She shared with me how she had asked everyone in her group
to describe what they wanted out of the gathering. What she got back was a
variety of responses. Some wanted an Acts 2 church, others wanted deeper
community, still another wanted to understand the Bible more. There seemed to
be little common ground among them, although every need expressed was valid in
its own way. That’s when the Holy Spirit gave me what she needed.
“I understand why you asked everyone to share their
expectations,” I said. “I would have wanted to know that if I were in your
shoes. But maybe next week you should ask everyone a different question. Ask
them to pray about what Jesus wants from this church, and not to assume that it’s
the same as what they’ve already expressed.”
That was it. One simple question that cut to the heart of
what this group was struggling with. But it wasn’t my question, it was the Lord’s
question for them.
I love moments like that. I love when the Holy Spirit shows
up and rescues me in those situations where I’m being asked to do something
that is beyond my reach. Sometimes the answers come to me in mid conversation
like this, but sometimes I have to stop and pray out loud for wisdom. Either
way, I’ve yet to have a situation where the Lord didn’t answer me when I needed
My anchor verse for all of this is James
any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all
without finding fault, and it will be given to you.But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the
one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind.That person should not expect to receive
anything from the Lord.”
Why does this work? I believe it’s because God wants to keep
us constantly aware of our need for Him. Especially when it comes to building
His church. The real danger comes when we start running off on our own without
consulting Him along the path. If we can do church without God then what’s the
point? Jesus said that without Him we can do nothing.
So, maybe it would be great to ask this question in your
church gathering: “What does Jesus want with your group?” And then spend some
time listening to what He says. The answers might surprise you.