Internal focus yields the dissatisfaction of a life that is stagnant. The only way for life to flow through any one of us is for us to live external of ourselves. We have to choose to live beyond our immediate personal comfort or preferences. That requires sacrifice but that sacrifice pays the price for the reward of satisfaction. There is a depth of living available which is only accessible by giving things away.
The greatest things we can give away are eternal and the things that are eternal are faith, hope and love (1 Cor 13). Everything else fades away. Sometimes faith, hope and love come in the form of provision or relief from lack. They can come in the form of tangible expressions that we can only hope reveal a deeper realization of Who provided.
When we meet others at their point of need without dictating conditions for our offering, they are able to receive the very things that we know are eternal. If we want to teach them a lesson about faith but they are hungry and defeated, they likely won’t have ears to hear. If we want to lecture them on behaviors from a place of judgment they will likely defend themselves and there will be no exchange of love.
If God has done something eternal within you, a natural response is the desire to share it. At the same time, the thought of sharing can provoke fear as the inexplicable, invisible thing within you searches for expression. It’s so real, yet so elusive, how can it be captured, packaged and given away?
- Be available – Relationship facilitates impact. Being available to others in the natural, normal flow of life without an agenda is necessary for authentic relationship.
- Listen – Really pay attention. If, in the context of authentic relationship, they are reaching out to expose their burdens or ask of your story, you’ll have an opportunity for depth.
- Defer – Trust the Holy Spirit. He is the One that shines a light; not you. Allow God to minister to others through you without leaving Him behind and carrying only a philosophy of Him with you. He’s good at this and He’ll include you.
- Comfort – The Holy Spirit is the Comforter. Want to agree with Him in the lives of others? Meet them where they are with the simple comfort of “I’m sorry.” Comfort requires no solution or advice.
- Encourage – Give courage away. Call others into a better place. Nobody rejects encouragement.
If we will foster authentic relationships, pay attention to others, agree with the Holy Spirit in the moment, meet others where they are and encourage them there will be no shortage of possibilities. Those practical methods can produce transformation in lives and God wants to include you as He changes things.