Become A Living Stone On Our Journey With God, Part 7
Many people today live mindlessly and aimlessly. Even professed Christians concede and bow down to the social currents of the day. They are called uncut stones, unfit for God’s purpose as they do not allow the Spirit of God to rule over and direct their lives. As a potter destroys his works when it’s unworthy to form, God will also judge and destroy all the unworthy in the lake of fire. But, we as Believers are built by Jesus as our cornerstone.
Now, therefore, you are no longer strangers and foreigners but are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, having been built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief cornerstone, in whom the entire building, tightly framed together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord, in whom you also are being built together into a dwelling place of God through the Spirit. Ephesians 2:19-22 MEV.
He is our master builder.
For we are laborers together with God: You are God’s vineyard; you are God’s building. According to the grace of God which has been given to me, as a wise master builder, I have laid the foundation, but another builds on it. Now let each one take heed how he builds on it. 1 Corinthians 3:9-10 MEV.
He is our living stone.
Coming to Him as to a living stone who is rejected by men, but chosen by God and precious, you also, as living stones, are being built up into a spiritual house as a holy priesthood to offer up spiritual sacrifices that are acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. 1 Peter 2:4-5 MEV.
When you do not allow yourself to be worked on, you are not fit for the master's use. A few examples of uncut stones are:
1. The timid and the cowards:
Those who live in fear are unfit for use. When Paul sent Timothy to Ephesus to pioneer a new church there, he exhorted him to break free from fear. He wrote:
So do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me, His prisoner. But share in the sufferings of the gospel by the power of God. 2 Timothy 1:8 MEV.
Fear is a spirit that paralyzes. You must be ready to defend your faith as it gets tested in every generation. When you surrender to the call of God, you must bravely open your mouth and defend your faith like Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego did.
During the Covid era, the whole earth has been tested for whom people will serve, even unto death. Many people worldwide succumbed to their government's totalitarian rule over their health and wealth in total submission. While God ordained the governments, he did not ordain them to step out of the bounds of their authority to become gods over the people, deciding all their activities from birth to death. Jesus fought the Pharisees and Sadducees because they usurped God’s authority unto themselves to rule the Jews of that day. Today, the same spirit is behind the world governments and corporations to usurp God’s given rights and free will to all people.
Many Christians faced with Covid mandates and vaccine passports believed that the gene therapy drug is the “Mark of the Beast,” where no man can buy and sell without taking the shots. While the world leaders attempted to treat it as such, it is not the actual Biblical “Mark.” The worldly powers’ plans failed. God may have allowed it to test this generation in the days of King Nebuchadnezzar, who stood up in faith and bowed down to the current Kings. When the Mark of the Beast arrives, all will know it's the Mark without leaving any room for speculation. The antichrist will require all to take the Mark and surrender their worship to him as a god, just as King Nebuchadnezzar did. Everyone will have to choose whom they wish to serve: God or Satan.
2. Carnally-minded Christians:
The standard of moral behavior has lowered worldwide to where anything goes. Unmarried Christians live together. Some pastors are adulterers and pedophiles. Many churches have accepted LGBTQ/homosexual relationships and perverted culture, openly promoting the rainbow pride flag and drag queen events to corrupt children. Don't be fooled. Those who indulge in these acts are not worthy of God’s Spirit in them. They deny the truth.
It's challenging to know the truth when many start to accept immorality as a new normal. God never changes, even if people’s values do with each season. Because more and more people are participating in today’s modern culture, it does not mean God approves of it. These people who fell into the pit with their blatant sins cannot be used as instruments of the Holy Spirit and can’t reflect God’s glory in them because it goes against His Word and Holy image.
One who cleanses himself from these things will be a vessel for honor, sanctified, fit for the Master’s use, and prepared for every good work. So flee youthful desires and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace, with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart. 2 Timothy 2:21-22 MEV.
Our usefulness to God is based on whether we have submitted to the process of sanctification and purification.
3. Lazy spectators:
In our 21st-century stress, we have lost the meaning of true fellowship and discipleship. Our attention span has gotten very short with the constant bombardment of media and information that it is overwhelming to keep up with without reducing our attention and reflection. We read only brief devotions on smartphones and recite generic prayers others wrote. All these things are not direct fellowship with God. Direct fellowship is a personal relationship with Him based on your real-life concerns, successes, and failures. When you take time to talk to God, it's natural and organic, not to be recited as some mantra. You wouldn’t want your friends to talk to you in scripted ways but in natural responsive interaction with one another, right? Well, it's the same with God: treat Him like your best friend as Enoch and Abraham did.
And Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him. Genesis 5:24 KJV.
But you, Israel, are My servant, Jacob whom I have chosen, the seed of Abraham, My friend. Isaiah 41:8 MEV.
So, don’t be quick to start your day's activity and forget to build a fellowship with God. If God is to use you, you must take His call seriously. He calls you to read His Word and be a passionate prayer warrior. The first-century apostles declared:
But we will give ourselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the word. Acts 6:4 KJV.
Halfhearted people never change the world because they are uncut stones. You must be devoted, committed, and passionate to make a maximum spiritual impact.
4. Alone in a Spiritual Wilderness:
Believers make up the Body of Christ, coming together to do all good works before the Lord.
Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Colossians 3:15 NIV.
Although many corrupt churches have become apostates of the Gospel today, it is still better to find a good church and gather as Believers. We have become isolated in our spiritual wilderness, where it is hard to grow spiritually and shepherd ourselves. God intended for us to gather together and exercise our spiritual gifts as a Body of Christ, so finding other Christians who have read and understood the Bible is essential.
A good, God-fearing pastor should be honored within the church to lead his flock. It's a difficult job, especially if he is a true man of God uncorrupted by the world. He will keep his sheep safe and protected. He will always tell the truth when he sees what’s coming and how to react in faith. He will have the strength to rule over his flock in God’s power and honor His Word always.
Beware of putting yourself among false Christians who prevent God’s truth by leading many astray. These tend to be people who bash attending physical church and a physical gathering of Believers.
Today, many online churches have formed, especially during the Covid era. Many churches shut down and were closed, given the government’s mandates. These church leaders served the beast system instead of God. However, the online gatherings are not a church but provide a false sense of Christian community to bring about an isolated spiritual wilderness.
If we are to grow spiritually and become connected with other Believers inside the church and be used by God, we need to assemble in a physical church.
Let us not forsake the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but let us exhort one another, especially as you see the Day approaching. Hebrews 10:25 MEV.
The day is approaching fast.
5. End-Time Christians:
Many Christians constantly worry about the world's evils, attempting to predict when the antichrist will arise or when the world will end. They focus on reinterpreting every word in multiple languages to align with their beliefs and when they will get raptured.
“Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God.” Colossians 3:2-3 NIV.
However, some Christians concentrate on God and put themselves out there to win lost sheep to Jesus and show His compassion to a broken world.
“Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” Matthew 28-19 NIV.
God made it plain to all men who He is and is written His Word in the Bible. Faith like Abraham is all that is required to be saved and spread the Gospel. Deeper meanings and interpretations are only relevant if they are consistent with the plain understanding of God’s Word. Otherwise, it's a deception from Satan to confuse the Believers from knowing the truth.
Jesus warned, “Watch out that you are not deceived. Many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am he,’ and, ‘The time is near.’ Do not follow them.” Luke 21:8 NIV.
6. Unwilling to Submit:
Jesus is not just our Savior; He is our Lord and wants to guide our decisions, direct our steps and overrule our selfish choices. Many Believers enjoy the benefits of Salvation, yet they never yield control to God. These are uncut stones that dread the quarry and pruning experience. It is important that you remember that if you want Him to use you, you must slide into the passenger seat and let Jesus drive. If you have a problem with willfulness, learn to pray.
Father, if You are willing, remove this cup from Me. Nevertheless not My will, but Yours, be done. Luke 22:42 MEV.
Many Christians might never be useful in the Kingdom because of mindsets or behaviors that limit the flow of the Holy Spirit. Paul the apostle said:
I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain. Galatians 2:21 KJV.
You never want to frustrate His grace! If you fall into one of these categories to be uncut stones thrown into the quarry, never to be used, ask God to guide you out of it and into a better direction on your journey with Him.
On the contrary, if you allow yourself to be taken to the quarry to be worked on, shaped, and fit for the master's use, you will stand before the high and mighty in society. You will be ranked among nobles and tagged a Living Stone rather than an Uncut Stone.
Do you see a man diligent in his business? He will stand before kings; he will not stand before obscure men. Proverbs 22:29 MEV.
Some notable qualities exhibited in the lives of Living Stones are:
1. Passionate Commitment to Jesus Christ:
God desires you to come close to Him and learn His ways. One of the primary indicators that you have become a disciple is when your passion shifts from worldly desires to Jesus.
If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be My disciple. And whoever does not bear his cross and follow Me cannot be My disciple. Luke 14:26-27 MEV.
This verse could be confusing in light of His commandment to love all people. So why would He say that you cannot follow Him if you don’t hate your family? He says this to show that you cannot be His disciple if you love your family or yourself more than Him. You must be willing to submit everything to God to follow Him and do what He asks of you, just as Abraham did. Abraham was ready to sacrifice his beloved son, Isaac, at the altar just as God commanded him. God allowed the sacrifice of His only begotten Son, Jesus, on the Cross to redeem all sinners. Therefore, your love for people cannot be greater than the love for Jesus. You must love Jesus above all and then love each other as He commanded.
2. Love for People:
Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ modeled extraordinary love for all people, and He came to teach us how to do the same. He has broken down the barriers that separated us. We are meant to be a light to the world and reconciled back to Him, the Father, so He can use us.
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples if you have love for one another. John 13:34-35 KJV.
3. Heart of a Servant:
True greatness begins with humility. The Bible tells us that to be great; we must serve others. And humility is at the center of the heart of a servant. He exalts the humble. We must decrease so that Christ’s character may increase in us.
He who is greatest among you shall be your servant. Matthew 23:11 MEV.
4. Submit to the Holy Spirit:
Do you know that the more connected you are to the Holy Spirit, the more connected you are to God? He is the presence, the power, and the anointing of God. When you receive Jesus as Lord, His Spirit comes to live inside you—to cleanse you of your past and give you a new life. Then you are fit for Him to use you. Then you can call down His glory, and His glory will fall.
I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Counselor, that He may be with you forever: the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, for it does not see Him, neither does it know Him. But you know Him, for He lives with you, and will be in you. John 14:16-17 MEV.
5. The Authority of God’s Word:
The Word of God is truth. Disciples have decided that they must elevate the Word above their feelings even though it’s complicated. Obeying His instruction releases anointing over our lives and takes us to another dimension in our relationship with Him.
Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, “If you remain in My word, then you are truly My disciples. You shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free.” John 8:31-32 MEV.
6. Live Morally Pure:
Our God is a good Father; He invites us to share in His character. As followers of Jesus, we have been forgiven and made holy, but because God is sacred and we are made in His image, we’re also called to live like Him.
But as He who has called you is holy, so be holy in all your conduct, because it is written, “Be holy, for I am holy.” 1 Peter 1:15-16 MEV.
Consecrate yourselves, therefore, and be holy, for I am the Lord your God. Leviticus 20:7 MEV.
For I am the Lord your God. You shall therefore sanctify yourselves, and you shall be holy, for I am holy. Leviticus 11:44 MEV.
All the Bible verses point to God’s holy image, and his personality, likes, and dislikes are personified in His Word from beginning to end. Thus, His Word is the standard of our morality. If we were sinless, our image would already have conformed to His. But, we live in a fallen world and immorality where God’s truth had to be written down for us to transform ourselves into His image.
7. Be Evangelistically Bold:
There is power in releasing yourself to be used by God. When we receive Christ, His Holy Spirit comes to live inside us. The only way to know your purpose is to know God. Lean on Him, and He will equip you to fulfill the same task He has called you to complete.
In Him also we have received an inheritance, being predestined according to the purpose of Him who works all things according to the counsel of His own will, that we, who were the first to hope in Christ, should live for the praise of His glory. Ephesians 1:11-12 MEV.
He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.” Mark 16:15 MEV.
8. Be Engage in Biblical Community:
Be good and show love and mercy to those you need to. God said that it is not suitable for man to be alone. Not only in marriage, but let brotherly and sisterly love continue. He wired us to function best in the context of biblical community. We are the family of God through faith in Jesus, so we don’t have to run this race alone.
They continued steadfastly in the apostles’ teaching and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in the prayers. Acts 2:42 MEV.
9. Be Just and Generous:
We shall live by faith. What we put our hope and trust in guides our thoughts, and decisions matter to God. When money rules us, it steals our hearts and affections away from the Father.
No one can serve two masters. For either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will hold to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money. Matthew 6:24 MEV.
However, every good gift comes from God. He gives us what we have for His purpose in us.
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom is no change or shadow of turning. James 1:17 MEV.
And also everyone to whom God has given wealth and possessions, and given him power to enjoy them, and to receive his reward and to rejoice in his labor—this is the gift of God. Ecclesiastes 5:19 MEV.
Some receive little, and some receive a lot. When more is given, more responsibility comes. If wealth is gained not by a blessing from the Lord, it brings sorrow.
The blessing of the Lord makes rich, and He adds no sorrow with it. Proverb 10:22 MEV.
God said to follow His cross and not worry about what you eat or drink.
So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will also be given to you. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. Matthew 6:31-34 NIV.
What matters most to God is what we do that has eternal significance. God’s greatest gift to us is His offer of eternal life for following Him.
For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16 MEV.
No matter where you are, what you do, or who you are, you can become the best of yourself. You can also be the best of what you dream you can be. It’s all about taking the proper steps at the right time, making the right decisions, and surrounding yourself with the right people. This way, you would never be an uncut stone or lack compassion. When you go through the quarry process, see that it is for your good. It would help if you do not sound noisy and complain about anything. Choose not to be disrespectful, and do not look down on anyone. Those whom you look down on just might be stepping stones to your greatness in life. Pitch your tent to be on the Father's side of all glory so He can use you as a vessel unto honor as He used all the Biblical prophets and His faithful. Above all, stay humble and take a cue from the sinless life of our Lord Jesus Christ. No matter what your challenges are, do not quit. Be bold, stay strong, remain optimistic, endure trials to the end, and you will overcome it all. Your best will surely come.
Jesus said, “If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes.” Mark 9:23 MEV.
Although this series of Journey With God has ended, your journey with God will never end.