The God Factor

You know I’ve heard this term over the last few years and I would like to give a few of my own opinions about this mysterious saying.

First, you see this term being used the most when smaller churches are trying to find out how the larger churches became large.  IT WAS THE GOD FACTOR. 

You know what?  I believe it was THE GOD FACTOR that helped these churches.  John 3:16, tells us that God loved the entire world and gave his most prized possession, his son to pay for the sins of those in the world who would accept this great gift.  Great News!

But, is there a definition for THE GOD FACTOR?  Well, you’re not going to find a literal explanation for it in the Bible, but based on places in the Bible we can draw some knowlege.  There are many opinions that are biblically based.  Here is my biblically based opinion.  I also believe from what I’ve observed and experienced that God chooses to help those who are passionate and obedient to Him and willing to risk all else.  Here is why I believe that. 

Just before Jesus was to be crucified he rode through Jerusalem on a colt while the people and his disciples praised Him saying, “Blessed is the King that comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!” Luke 19:38(NIV)  The Pharisees were hot! They demanded that Jesus rebuke (discipline) his followers.  But Jesus told the Pharisees, “I tell you,” he replied, “if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out.” Luke 19:40(NIV)   JESUS WAS THE GOD FACTOR AND STILL IS.  A week later Jesus paid the price for being the GOD FACTOR. 

Jesus came back from the dead and explained to his disciples all that they had seen and heard and commissioned them to GO and tell all the world.  He never said the world will like you and accept me, as a matter of fact, He told them they would pay the price for believing in Him and spreading the word – THE GOD FACTOR.

Here is the deal, when there is opposition to God’s ways and we are willing to risk it all, follow no matter the cost, THE GOD FACTOR happens.

One last note, to me it’s not that mysterious.  It’s God and it’s a dimension that we as men have trouble grasping and that takes faith just as it took to believe that Jesus is the Son of God and will be Lord of my life.  But the fact remains that those who have risked for God have received great gain for His kingdom and the best is yet to come.

To Serve

I learned something this week that God rang loud and clear to me.  God, my Father, thanks for the reminder.

The reason I serve is because the Father and Jesus loved me so much that they provided me an escape from death and hell and to become and heir of God’s kingdom.  If they love me that much, I want to love them back by serving the ways that I was shaped and can be of most benefit to the kingdom that I am an heir.

Here is our worship set for today:

Arise

Because of Your Love

Your Love, Oh Lord

I Will Love

Love Song

Notice all the love songs listed because the Father and Jesus first loved us and we celebrate and love them back.

Trusting God

Here is the worship set from today at Zion:

  1.  Let the Praises Ring
  2. How Majestic
  3. Sing to the King
  4. How Great is Our God/How Great Thou Art
  5. All My Life

The message was about “Trusting God.  How do we trust God with our finances mainly.

God gave me a new chorus on the way to the church this morning as I drove in for rehearsal.  I’ve been working on it all day.  It’s always refreshing when God shows His love as I try to concentrate on Him.

The Real You and the Real Me

You know I’ve been thinking today about what’s REAL.  Have you ever wondered why people use fake fruit in a display on their table or kitchen counter top?  I know this sounds obvious, but they do it because it looks better longer.

 With fruit, the artificial always looks good because it’s not living.  It’s not REAL.  But, if you leave REAL fruit in that bowl long enough you won’ t recognize it, but you will know it’s REAL because it no longer lives and it stinks.

OK Eric, where are you going with this?  All I’m saying is the the REAL fruit lives and dies.  The fake fruit just looks good.

But here is the gold to me.  The REAL fruit tastes delicious, refreshing and satisfying if eaten.  To take a pinch or chew of the fake fruit is dissappointing.  You may say, “But the fake fruit looks so much better” or “It’s so much easier to deal with for looks.  It’s comfortable.”  But the point remains, you can’t eat the fake fruit and enjoy it.

This reminds me of a passage of scripture and it challenges all of us to be REAL.

Here is Luke 12:1-3 (The Message)

 1-3By this time the crowd, unwieldy and stepping on each other’s toes, numbered into the thousands. But Jesus’ primary concern was his disciples. He said to them, “Watch yourselves carefully so you don’t get contaminated with Pharisee yeast, Pharisee phoniness. You can’t keep your true self hidden forever; before long you’ll be exposed. You can’t hide behind a religious mask forever; sooner or later the mask will slip and your true face will be known. You can’t whisper one thing in private and preach the opposite in public; the day’s coming when those whispers will be repeated all over town.

Did you notice that Jesus was talking to Christians?  A Christ follower can become contaminated with Pharisee phoniness.  Hmmn? 

Here is the challenge for us all.  Don’t be FAKE as a believer or leader for Christ.  You and I should be what we say we are if we are truly going to inspire those that are looking for delicious, refreshing and satisfying HOPE.  We must be REAL.