Daily Office Readings for Monday 6 May 2019 3 Easter Year 1
“Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God; for many false prophets have gone out into the world.” (1 John 4:1)
Ok, so I was unaware of the different spirits, especially evil ones. I suppose there are but I try to make myself familiar with the Holy One. One of the ways I tell if the Spirit is from God is to see if there is a cost for me, either monetary or time or both. Normally I can tell it is from God if it is inconvenient for me but serves a benefit for others.
Some examples of the Spirit of God working in me are made manifest in giving people time by listening to them vent or just explain what has happened to them. I preach that fifteen minutes or fifteen days or even fifteen years are added to our lives that aren’t ours. This added time was given to us for the benefit of others.
Sometimes if I find myself with a few extra dollars I feel I have been rewarded for something that maybe I have forgotten about and I justly deserve it. And then someone in need will appear and I realize that God has given me “their” money. This is no time to be stingy or self-serving.
There are so many biblical examples of God gifting people to do the work of giving the time that others need. God made use of Moses, and the prophets who were called from positions of comfort to go and help others. This power was not for them to be personably profitable but for them to carry messages of hope and freedom to people who needed it.
When Jesus sent out the twelve he gave them the power to “heal the sick who are there and tell them, ‘The kingdom of God has come near to you.’” (Luke 10:9) I like Luke’s version of the sent-out healing because Luke has the twelve even responding to those who do not welcome them. “But when you enter a town and are not welcomed, go into its streets and say, ‘Even the dust of your town we wipe from our feet as a warning to you. Yet be sure of this: The kingdom of God has come near.’” (Luke 10:10-11) So even if people refuse the help they are informed that the kingdom of God has in fact come near.
If I get messages of personal advantage or privilege without a clear path of how to use if for the benefit of others I am very suspicious of the origin that spirit. The goodness of God works with us to assist the needy and down trodden. All we have to do is understand that God uses us to help us.
Let us hear what the Spirit is saying through and to the people of the Creating Word and then let us “Ponder anew what the Almighty is doing.” John Thomas Frazier Sr.