God calls us, generally speaking, to do a few things:
1. Honor Him with all that we are, first and foremost
2. Love others as yourself
3. Be good stewards of what we are given
Now, I know that is very general, that does not encompass or touch on all that God has called us as His people to do.
God’s standard tells us that every life matters, no matter what.
There are many many examples in the Bible where God has used someone who might be looked at is unworthy or unclean. But, he uses that individual for His glory anyways. In Joshua 2, the Lord calls them to go and “look over the land” especially Jericho. When they did so, they went to a prostitute’s house and she sheltered the two spies that Joshua sent. Eventually, when they destroyed that city, the prostitute, Rahab, and her family were the only people saved. Every life matters, no matter what.
Allow me to kick this article off with a recent current event — restricting abortion in 7 US states to date. Now I won’t get into my personal opinion and I will try to keep this impersonal. But, I will share a few thoughts and then bring it back to my three initial points, especially as I should be able to connect this topic to all three things that I believe God calls us to do.
So now, if I may…
There have been so many discussions lately about abortion and pro-choice and the new laws passed. There are many different viewpoints, numerous extremes, and lots of people with strong opinions. I’m not one to try to force my views on anyone or oppose anyone intentionally.
But, I will never withhold my truth.
God says that every life matters. Regardless of who we are, every life matters. I understand abortion, the reasons for it, the reasons against it. But, to me, there are many more things to consider. While no, I never believe that God ever calls for someone to experience rape and then birth a child at a young age in today’s society, I know this, God can USE that situation and create good out of it, no matter what. That is my truth, God can use anyone, no matter what. No matter who the individual is or how they came into the world, God can use them for His glory.
As I’ll get to later on, all that we can do is listen to God, to his vision for our lives. Because, what He has in store for us, is greater than we could ever imagine ourselves. As an individual, I would never try to, as I said, force my views on anyone or seek to make a decision for someone else, it is all between an individual, and God.
Bringing those points back to the topic of this article, I will say this, God’s standard? It calls us all to show love. No matter what, to show love.
God calls us first and foremost to honor Him. Above all else.
“Honor the Lord from your wealth and from the first of all your produce” — Proverbs 3:9
“For you have been bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body” — 1 Corinthians 6:20
“Whether, then, you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God” — 1 Corinthians 10:31
I don’t want to make this entire article about abortion, I want to make this entire article about God’s standard for people and what I believe that is, about what I seek to uphold each and every day of my life.
God calls us to honor Him. He sent Jesus, that’s the price, the price He paid was sacrificing His only son. We are called to glorify God with our body, I cannot say that abortion does that. Again, there are many factors, and I know that circumstances are different for everyone. But, God calls us to honor Him.
Honor Him from our wealth. Honor Him from our produce. Honor Him with our bodies. Honor God in all that we do and all that we are. God can use anything that we experience for His glory, no matter what, He can move mountains and create a great life. I cannot speak on what God calls each of us, as individuals, to do. But, I can speak about what God calls us, as a people, to do. Honor Him.
No matter what the circumstances are, I believe that God calls us to honor Him, as individuals, no matter what.
God said over and over and over to Joshua, “Do not be afraid.” God is with us. He calls us to know that He is with us. God encourages us to take courage. God tells us to take courage, no matter what, He has already won. He can lead us through any circumstance, keep the faith.
The second thing that I want to highlight is that God calls us to love others as ourselves.
“You will realize how powerful you are when you love yourself first”
— Harrison Wendland
I have been reflecting and praying about God’s commandment to love our neighbors as ourselves. How can we possibly do that if we don’t love ourselves most? We don’t want to give anyone some second-tier love, that’s just ridiculous.
No matter who someone is, what they’ve done, we should love them.
In my eyes, love is always going to look different. We will not always love and GIVE. Sometimes we love and expect. Sometimes we love and demand.
If someone makes a mistake and loses something, we might not want to replace that thing unless we first teach them how to keep it.
We must love ourselves first and THEN once our cups are full, let those cups overflow unto others.
I believe that one of the reasons that we are all living on earth in the way that we are is because God calls us, as people, to uplift each other. No matter who we are, to love, to encourage, and to empower. That’s what I believe.
Love is so so so so powerful.
“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.” — 1 Corinthians 13:4–5
How have you shown love today?
Maybe it was through something that you thought was minuscule in your eyes, maybe minor, but, in the eyes of the person that you showed kindness to, they felt overwhelming love.
I believe that we are called to love ourselves wholeheartedly and, fill our own figurative cup, and then let that overflow to others.
Finally, God calls us to be good stewards of what we are given and blessed with.
God commands us to take care of all we are given. Ultimately, that means our hearts, that means our souls, that means every single material belonging.
Being a good steward means that we use all that we have for God. For His glory and not our own.
Maybe the things that we are stewards of are not things that we expected. Because we did not ask God for them, or because we tried to avoid receiving them, or because we did not want them, does that mean that we should not manage them well?
I don’t think that changes a thing. No matter how we got what we have, God calls us to take care of it — especially if it is from Him. That is why it is so important to have a relationship with God so that we can have a conversation with Him and gain an understanding of what is from Him and what is not. Because, I don’t believe that anyone in the world can make that differentiation, only God can.
There is always going to be wealth in the world, who manages it? The people who can take care of it and be good stewards.
Some of the wealthiest people in the world believe different things, but, they are all responsible with their finances and the wealth that they possess, otherwise, they would not have it.
Whatever it is that we are blessed with, we should give our 100%. By meeting God’s standards, we should meet those of our self also.
If you are blessed with an incredible gift for writing but don’t write, are you being a good steward? I don’t think so.
If you are an amazing runner but don’t run, are you being a good steward? I don’t think so.
If you have a generous heart but don’t take time to give to others, are you being a good steward? I don’t think so.
If you have a way with words and are a great communicator and take part in missions, are you being a good steward? I think so, if that’s what God has called you to do.
If you have a way with words and are a great communicator and take part in events worldwide to speak in front of others, are you being a good steward? I think so, if that’s what God has called you to do.
If you have a way with words and are a great communicator and write books and host a podcast, are you being a good steward? I think so, if that’s what God has called you to do.
But, all I can share is my interpretation of God’s standard. All I can share is what I believe from reading His word. All I can share is what He has told me and revealed to me through my life and through others.
I think that God’s standard is between us, as individuals, and Him, because I do not believe that any two people have the same mission on this earth.
“When you give to God, you discover that God gives to you”
As I conclude this piece… I reflect a little on the journey that God puts each of us on. The trials, the triumphs. All of it.
The sins we have all committed. The wrongs we have all committed. Everything.
God can, and does, use it all. If we let Him.
We cannot always see the finish line and we cannot always live the way that God has called us to live, we won’t always meet His standards. But. But. But. By grace alone, we are saved. We are invited to salvation and can experience and celebrate eternal life alongside Him. That to me is amazing. That even when we fail to meet the most difficult standards, God looks past that, forgives us, calls us His own, and LOVES us. Isn’t that amazing?
His standard is incredible. So as I think about where my peers are going in this earthly life, where my family is going in this earthly life, where people around the world are going in this earthly life, and where I am going in this earthly life, I think of this.
It is ALL in God’s time, and the sooner we choose to follow Him, the sooner we can experience all of the amazing blessings that He has for us. That is God’s standard.
“I look at those places and realize they were integral to where God has taken me and where He will continue to take me. I see that each growth interval of my life where, at the time, I was certain I was about to meet my end, were seed stages for the next season. I could not have produced the fruit without the frustration. God could not ferment my fruit without the frustration. God could not ferment my fruit into His wine for maximum potency without my willingness to relinquish it to His winepress.”
— T.D. Jakes