“Apart from me you can do nothing.” As you probably know, these are Jesus’ words. Ministry leaders recite this quote of Jesus all the time. Unfortunately, I have done many things in the name of Jesus but disconnected from Him. Have you? I have been thinking lately that if I am really going to take Jesus at his word there may be a few mindsets of mine that will need to change in order to be a great branch connected to the most wonderful Vine. So here are the top 4 mindsets that have to change…
- I don’t get the credit, Jesus does.
- Connected = Humble
- EVERYTHING flows out of life with God
I don’t get credit, Jesus does
The first change in mindset is that I must have is to operate in the appropriate hierarchy. Jesus is the Head of the Church, the Firstborn over all creation, the King of Kings. I am not. Now, I know this in my brain but I need to LOVE this reality. I’m sure there are leaders who don’t like or need the pats on the back, but if I’m honest, I like words of affirmation and hearing, “job well done” means a a ton to me. So even though I work hard and I desire to do a great job. I like the “at-a-boys”. Jesus knows this and he is kind and generous and I am grateful. For me to LOVE giving credit to Jesus and making sure that I acknowledge Him and give Him praise for all things is a big deal.
How do we do this? We hang out with Jesus. Because when we hang out with Jesus long enough our heart will beat like His! When my heart beats in rhythm with Jesus’ heart the syncopation will produce praise and honor (giving credit) to whom it’s due.
Connected = Humble
As I have mentioned, getting my heart to beat in rhythm with Jesus’ heart requires that I am near his heart… a lot. In my experience and as I read God’s word I have found that when I have a connected relationship with Jesus I have a right view of who Jesus Christ is and a right view of my place in the universal order.
David writes in Psalms 8:3-5
3When I look at the night sky and see the work of your fingers—https://bible.com/bible/116/PSA.8.NLT
the moon and the stars you set in place—
4what are mere mortals that you should think about them,
human beings that you should care for them?
5Yet you made them only a little lower than God and crowned them with glory and honor.
6You gave them charge of everything you made,
putting all things under their authority—
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David has a connected and humble relationship to God. One that I desire. David is right that when I begin to see where God has his place in the hierarchy and where I have mine, I am in awe that God considers me let alone that he loves me and sent Jesus Christ on a rescue mission for me.
I can only say this now that I am in my mid 40s. Patience is required in order to work through the process that God has for our lives. We are in a marathon, not a sprint. This is a Crock-pot, not a microwave. Okay, I think we get the point! Patience is required. I’m still not great at being patient. But I now realize that some things should not come overnight or be built in a day. Some things in our lives take time and we are grateful! Like I can’t even imagine what would happen if a pregnancy was only 9 hours! There are reasons why some things take time. In the process of becoming like Christ this process will take time. Growth and maturity take time and numerous decisions have to be made, adjustments have to be made and then more decisions have to be made based on the learning you have done. Growth and maturity takes millions of decisions over years and over numerous experiences. Don’t rush. Take your time to learn, grow and mature.
EVERYTHING flows out of life with God
I am thankful for Jesus telling me in John 15 that as a branch that is connected to the Vine, I am dependent on Him…. for everything. Apart from Jesus I am nothing more than fuel for a fire. This has been my experience. When I am in rhythm with Jesus, I am being moved by His Spirit through each area of life. When I am being moved by His Spirit I am on mission with Him. When I am on mission with Him and living among lost people I will bear witness to them about the One I am connected to. When I share with them about Jesus I am doing the thing that Jesus told his disciples to do which is to “go and make disciples.” This is why EVERYTHING flows out of life with God! Depending on Him, knowing Him deeply, His Spirit transforming me to be life Jesus are the overflows of a life that is connected to Jesus Christ.
These are the mindsets that have to change in me in order for me to truly live and move and have be being in Jesus Christ. My natural mindsets are rooted in my flesh. My selfishness and pride and are ridiculous. But praise be to God (Romans 7:25) that the answer is Jesus Christ our Lord. He is the one that is taking us through a process that will make us like Him and I need to trust His process.