Archive for January, 2011
1 Corinthians 4:1-5: A faithful sevant or not?
In chapter 3 Paul speaks of the status of ministers of the Gospel and how people should regard them. They were never to be the focus of anyone’s loyalties, they don’t have supernatural powers and most importantly their authority is given to them by the Master–Jesus! In these next few verses Paul teaches us to not make judgments as to whether they are faithful or not. That’s God’s job.
v.1-2, Paul starts off this passage with simply putting all preachers, teachers and leaders in their place, including him. He does this because the Corinthian believers were boasting about their teacher or leader. He says “look at Apollos and me as mere servants of Christ who have been put in charge of explaining God’s mysteries.” Paul wants the Corinthian believers to regard him and all other ministers of the Gospel as simply servants or slaves. In those days no one would ever have mistaken a servant—a slave—for his master. It is not the servant or the slave who would have been prominent but his master. So it should be with Paul and all other ministers in their service of Jesus. The servant always did what the master told him to do, it was never the other way around. They were “put in charge” or managers or stewards of “explaining God’s mysteries.” Wealthy households often had stewards who managed the family resources and ran the home and the same is true of these leaders, they had been entrusted with “explaining God’s mysteries” which is the Gospel, God’s message of salvation. These mysteries cannot be discovered or comprehended by human wisdom, but they have been entrusted to God’s servants to be carefully and responsibly taught to others. Simply put they must be “faithful” or trustworthy.
v.3-4, Paul then focusses on the biggest issue facing this church and it’s members–boasting about what preacher is better. He says “it matters very little how I might be evaluated by you or by any human authority. I don’t even trust my own judgment on this point.” Paul was saying that human judgment was worthless just as much as human wisdom (2:6). Because Paul had been called by God to serve and preach he only looked to God alone to judge his performance. He didn’t even depend on his own self-evaluation. When he did look within, Paul could honestly say that his “conscience [was] clear, but that doesn’t prove [he was] right.” The Lord alone could make that judgment. Paul was accountable to God and only he “will examine [him] and decide” if his performance was God-honouring or not!
v.5, So with all the above in mind, Paul warns the Corinthian believers to “don’t make judgments about anyone ahead of time—before the Lord returns” or be careful to jump to conclusions as to whether or not someone is faithful. Paul was saying we can only see the outward appearance of a preacher or teacher, we can’t see their heart or their motives or even if their life is the opposite of what they preach, so don’t make judgments as to whether someone is faithful or not. The reason he says the “Lord returns” is because God alone can discern a person’s heart (1 Sam 16:7). God knows the “darkest secrets” and “private motives” of all of us. Humans can’t do this so they should not jump to judging the heart of one another…especially a preacher or teacher. And when Jesus does return “God will give to each one whatever praise is due” him. At the 2nd coming, those who have been faithful, as judged by God, will receive “praise” and a reward from him.
WHAT DOES THIS MEAN TO ME? For me it is very easy to get caught in the trap of jumping to conclusions about how faithful someone is or isn’t by their actions or what they say. This passage tells me clearly to not only judge others but to also not judge myself. That’s God’s job, not mine.
WHAT AM I GOING TO DO ABOUT IT? I get so focused on whether others approved or disapprove of me as a teacher / preacher that I forget that God is the person I should be seeking approval from. And more importantly God is who I should be honouring with my ministry or service, not man. I want to focus more on what God thinks of me and less on what others do. And when I do face criticism or even praise I want to pray for God’s perspective in it all.
Today was a momentus ocassion after 2.5 yeaers Faith got her very first haircut. I took a few videos and a picture of the lady who cut Faith’s hair (see them below), and I was so impress with Faith she was so brave. But then again, when hasn’t she been brave? I want to get her a t-shirt that says “no fear” cuz she isn’t afraid of anything…that I know of yet.
Now Faith has bangs and she can see without brushing her hair away from her face. She also has even hair along the back and looks so pretty…like a little girl. It is funny now she takes the brush we bought her and starts brushing her hair. I think she truly likes her new hair cut.
I hope you enjoy the videos and picture. Faith is still my little princess.
On January 20, 2011 Baby Shawn, as Faith calls him, turned 1 years old. We didn’t get to celebrate on the day as we did with Faith. However we did get to spend the Saturday after with Shawn. De-Ann bought chocolate cupcakes and put tiny candles in them and we bought him a cool truck he can push around, not to mention all the fun he had with us as we played, sang, and held him. It was a good afternoon.
Even though we didin’t get to spend his actual birthday with him, we had a lot of fun hanging out with him and his foster family a few days later. We are so thankful we have these opportunitites to get to know Shawn better and hopefully he is getting to know us too. I know it is going to take time and we are willing to put that time in. We started our relationship with Faith when she was 6 months old, so we have a long way to go before Shawn knows us as well. But we are so thankful to God for another child–this time a son.
I hope you enjoy the pictures below…
This is going to be short….
I wanted to update you quickly on our “new” house…soon to be our HOME!
On January 21 at about 3:30pm I picked up our keys to our new house. That night I went to the house and checked to see if everything was as we had agreed. Only a few things had to be settled with the real estate agent which she was amazing. She not only met me at the house to look it over but she also had her husband help me with some things that were left behind.
Since the possession of the keys we have visited the house a few times. Once so De-Ann can finally see the basement empty and map out how she wants it look like finished. Side note: I finally get a real media room. Yeah! A few other times to drop off items that we would prefer not be moved with movers–like framed pictures and other items that can easily be broken. The last trip was today, I met a HVAC guy to take a look at the furnance and give me a quote for gas lines. He also helped me move some items that were left behind by the former owners. Did I mention, this is the husband of our real estate agent. Great guy! After he left I stayed to spend many hours prepping the bedrooms for a big painting job tomorrow (De-Ann’s department). Filling holes, sanding, and filling holes, sanding, and…did I mention filling holes and sanding??!
I just got home a few minutes ago and I am exhausted. Tomorrow it is De-Ann’s turn but luckily she has some helpers, some ladies from the church–our new church! I love our church!!!
If this is the first time you have heard about our move and new home check out one of my earlier posts. Here is a link: http://is.gd/yikBPX.