Charles Stanley is a hero to me. He and I did some work together on a television program years ago. He was gracious enough to be a guest on CrossView. It was a big deal to me to meet and study him. His son, Andy, is one of my favorites to hear when I attend Catalyst in Atlanta. While both are powerful speakers, their styles vary greatly.
Charles and Andy meet the first Thursday of every month for breakfast. They once were discussing preaching; its theory, direction, etc. Charles told his son, “You’ve got to have a burden. That’s the thing most preachers are missing. A burden. If they don’t have a burden it’s just a bunch of fluff.”
I love that thought. Such a statement pierces the air of church busyness, mission statement preparation, organizational shuffling, and the showing up at the appointed times. It clears the church sinuses. We do well when we have a burden. I have one. Do you?
I want the entire religious world and all of the non-religious world to know the abundant life God desires for us. So many churches don’t know of it and don’t have it. So many away from God, of course, don’t have it. I don’t think there’s anyone in the world, if they knew about it, who wouldn’t want it. My burden is to get the news out. See I not only believe we can do it, I think it is getting done.
While I may work from a small cubicle located at 747 S. Memorial in Tulsa, I work the entire planet. We do it together as a part of his body. Memorial Drive has people stationed in Scotland and Guadalajara and South Africa and Iraq and on Oklahoma Christian's campus and in Detroit and Indianapolis…..that’s just a smidge of the people I know directly who are involved in God’s work. We are sending others I know from here to Kenya and Honduras and China.
But what excites me even more is my burden connects me to others in the body whom I don’t know personally. I just know they are out there doing His stuff from their cubicle as I am mine. They are in Peru and Nigeria and Alaska. Some are imprisoned in Texas and New Hampshire. Believers are in serving in Iran, suffering in Pakistan, mobile in Greece and shivering in the Ukraine. God’s body is large and we are all given in the burden of seeing that mankind has a shot at abundant life in Jesus the Hero.
Do you have a burden for the world? Great! We must not bark at the church because it isn’t doing enough. We are alert to its doing more than can be imagined. Refrain from being bummed by so much going wrong. God will take care of that. Applaud and rejoice that so much is going right. Don’t be burdened that you are burdened. Transform such pressure into fuel for the world to know Life….real, authentic Life. Yes, it’s slow. Yes, it’s tough. And, yes, we are on fire for the cause. We are burdened and because of such…..we are driven to lose neither sight nor hope.
Share your burden. What keeps you enthused and thrilled over kingdom work?