When they came to Jerusalem, they were welcomed by the church and the apostles and elders, to whom they reported everything God had done through them.
The mission of the church is God’s mission. It doesn’t belong to the church. We didn’t originate the mission and we don’t even carry it out. Oh, we’re involved, but it’s not us doing it. God is carrying out His mission through His people.
Paul and Barnabas had this perspective. Of all the things they accomplished – and they accomplished a lot – they understood that it was God accomplishing His work through them. I noticed this yesterday in the last couple of verses in Acts 14.
On arriving there, they gathered the church together and reported all that God had done through them and how he had opened the door of faith to the Gentiles. And they stayed there a long time with the disciples.
And then a third time…
The whole assembly became silent as they listened to Barnabas and Paul telling about the miraculous signs and wonders God had done among the Gentiles through them.
This perspective changes everything! Since it’s God’s Mission that He is accomplishing through me, I cannot take credit when good things happen. All glory goes to God. I also can’t accept the self-condemnation that easily comes with defeat and setbacks. I am just the Lord’s servant.
What’s important is for me to keep that yielded, humble attitude that listens to the leading of the Holy Spirit. God sees through my busyness. My busyness does not mean the Kingdom of Heaven is advancing through me, it just means I’m busy. The Kingdom advances as God works through me. It’s His work done through His man.
Father, help me steward my life well. It is a gift from You! May I be about your mission, listening and learning from You and seeing You accomplish things that bring You glory.