Saturday, March 7, 2015

What is God's Circle for Us?--by Linden Malki

What circles is God showing you?  God has given each of us individual talents, gifts, and circumstances. Our challenge is to recognize where He has put us, and how He is calling us to reach beyond ourselves to amazing places with His strength.

God called Abram, and promised to make him the father of a nation--and he was already an old man with no children. The rest of the Bible follows the enlarging circles of this man and his family from one man to not only a nation, but a kingdom that encompasses a world. God sent "His only Son" to save the world--a circle at a time. He commanded eleven men to pray with one hundred twenty people, to preach to thousands--His circles began with Judea, then Samaria, then the whole Roman Empire, and on to the farthest reaches of the world. In the history of God's work in the world, He calls people--individuals--who each have different abilities and potentials to move in growing circles and change their world in God's image. 

The new movie "McFarland USA" is a true story of how one man recognized the abilities and potential of seven teenagers to become not only a team, but winners who not only enlarged their own horizons, and the ripples brought a town together in support. There is one scene which the team was in a huddle, praying before a meet. It's not overtly mentioned, but it shows something happening beyond the limitations of ordinary people. In fact, C.S. Lewis once said that "There are no ordinary people."

One of my circles right now is the downtown block where I work. Every day, I drive around it and pray for each business and family on the block--that those who know God will be strenghened and those who don't will be reached; and that everyone who comes through our doors will be encouraged.  This city needs more people who pray for each other! God will fill in the circles with His work through us; He'll tell us what that looks like in His time.

As a church, we are prayerfully seeking to identify and grow into the next circle that God is preparing for our ministry. It's not about what we would like, but what God has for us. For that matter, as individuals, families, churches, communities, whatever circles we are in--this is always what it's truly about.

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