I returned safely from West Africa this past Friday, but unfortunately picked up a COVID bug along the way. It’s not unusual for me to get sick after a very busy and stressful trip, so I’m not too surprised. And as I sit with a cloudy head, I smile at the forced rest that I am given, knowing that the Father knows that I am not always wise about rest and may need to be forced.
In going through some papers on my desk, I found one entitled, “Five Faith Declarations for the Marketplace” that I picked up from one of our partners. This document had been created before they knew about DML and I again smile that God is bringing His people together, in His time, and in His way, and we simply get to join in what He is already doing in and through His bride, the Church.
These five declarations, written in a language I do not speak, are translated as follows:
- I am important to the Kingdom of God; therefore, I will be an ambassador for him.
- My business is my ministry; therefore, my work is a form of worship to him.
- My business is my mission field; therefore, I will shine the light of Jesus Christ.
- God’s Kingdom is my priority; therefore, I’m blessed to be a blessing.
- God’s anointing is my competitive advantage; therefore, I will seek His presence in my business.
There are two things that strike me as I reflect on the words on this page:
One, I am struck by the theme of “therefore” in each declaration. God has called us to action, blessing us to be a blessing; calling us to be His hands and feet to the world around us in whatever sphere of influence He has allowed us to be. Every day is an opportunity to do my work as unto the Lord (Colossians 3:23).
Two, I am struck by the use of the words “Kingdom of God” rather than the term “church.” This is where we are to perform the “therefore(s)…” mentioned above. I have been reading a book called, The Kingdom of God in Working Clothes, by R. Paul Stevens, who reinforces the Biblical emphasis on the Kingdom of God, which unifies everything we do in every space, in every sphere of culture. He states that Jesus spoke about the Kingdom of God 129 times but only three times about the church. God intended to exercise His sovereignty through His entire creation and commissioned His God-imaging creatures to bring in that Kingdom.
And so as I sit in my quarantined room, reflecting on what God is doing, I find myself humming a familiar tune:
What a fellowship, what a joy divine, leaning on the everlasting arms
What a blessedness, what a peace is mine, leaning on the everlasting arms…
Oh how sweet to walk, in this pilgrim’s way, leaning on the everlasting arms
Oh how bright the path grows from day to day, leaning on the everlasting arms!
Note on above pictures: I was privileged to meet parents on this past trip, who helped to inform, lead, teach, and guide their children to be men and women of God! The first picture is Dr. Sublime’s father from the DRC and the second picture are Pastor Theo’s parents from Burkina Faso. What an honor to meet these parents!