“But I will stay on at Ephesus until Pentecost, 9 because a great door for effective work has opened to me, and there are many who oppose me.”1 Cor 16:8-9
Every human being has a spiritual vacuum or faculty that needs a supernatural deposit or filling in order to connect to their destinies while still on Earth. This is the calling or purpose for living not simply existing. A revelation from God will help Christians to visualize and fully maximise their potential towards identifying opportunities that God has placed before them.
Every Christian has a gift that can open doors for them. Proverbs 18:16 – Your gift shall open a door for you. Let’s use those gifts to glorify God. Persecutions in the ministry are not aimed at breaking our hearts. They are aimed at solidifying our relationship with God and renewing our commitment to him. They make us stronger by allowing our faith to grow through ultimate reliance on God’s power. We become stronger at the point of brokenness.
There are multiplicities of doors that our God is opening for you – are you aware of it and step into it?
Christians are fond of seizing the ministerial opportunities and disregarding that the enemy wants them to fall from the grace of God. The devil wants to tempt, ensnare, take us captive, oppress and training us to them to be successful liars because he is the father of all liars.
Comfort and complacency
When Christians who are used by God to perform specific tasks in the kingdom excel, a wave of comfort engulfs them and reasons to stay contented with where they are block their eyes while they still remain open forgetting that they are called out to the world and that the great commission of winning men to him is a prime objective that demands discipline, passion and immediacy to tackle the existing and emerging darts of the enemy. The principal adversary has established departments or sections tasked with hunting the souls of the Ministers of the gospel and plotting their downfall. We need to arise, identify and utilise the opportunities to reach men for God.
Strife of men and tongues
The principal adversary also uses arrogant teachers of the law in order to scatter their already gathered flock and destabilize their desire for God. These arrogant teachers are found in churches and camouflage as holy men. Paul warns Timothy to stay away from such since they try to influence converts to deny God’s power (2 Timothy 3:5)
These evil men try to disrupt efforts of the believers to know God. Their primary goal is to block their eyes not to see, identify the effectual doors that God has opened for them. They are not happy when believers are involved in the furtherance of the gospel.
Paul being a New Testament Apostle is a classic example. He met with strong oppositions propelled by the enemies of the gospel when he had just celebrated the Pentecostal festivals in Corinth. God had opened his eyes to see the effectual doors for the ministry but also informed him of many adversaries whose goals were to thwart his efforts of evangelizing to the people of Ephesus and Asia (1 Corinthians 16:9) God had persuaded him with an assurance that there is nothing that could oppose the penetration of the gospel in Ephesus and Asia during his previous missionary journeys. This reassurance reaffirmed Paul’s desire to continue evangelizing the world. Paul, the Benjamite encountered many persecutions but his spiritual fervour remained within standard.
Way out into the effective door
Belonging to a sound community of believers will expose them to discover their hidden potential, rediscover their place and role in the Kingdom, developing or building up and carefully nurturing their gifts or talents with an ultimate goal of fulfilling their purpose on Earth and reordering or realigning their lives to yield to God’s primary desire.
Tips to success in effective ministry
1) Watching and praying: This enabled him to deal with the false teachers who the enemy had strategically positioned to undermine or challenge his apostolic authority. The quality time he spent with God purchased his success in his holy calling.
2) Being brave: He refused to be won by fear and took a courageous stand amidst persecution.
3) Being strong: His weapon was standing firm in the time of adversity. This denied the devil all opportunities to attack his calling.
4) Love: He maintained love for God, community of all believers and thus blocked the enemy from penetrating into the lives of converts.
5) Unreserved devotion to Ministry: Paul had committed himself to God. He spent his time seeking the face of God and encouraging, nurturing the gifts of the believers. Fellowship with believers will enhance them to identify their calling on a very systematic way. This unwavering commitment opened successful evangelistic mission opportunities for Apostle Paul.
Therefore let us resist the voice of the enemy and hold firm to our calling in Christ Jesus. He does not change his standards on the assignments that he has given us and uses us to handle difficult circumstances as we undergo adversity.
~Credits to guest writer Steve Muthama for this brilliant piece ~