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Integrity vs. Loyalty – Part VII

by on October 26, 2015

Integrity vs. Loyalty – Part VII

Needs – Healing for the hurting heart and soul

We are living in difficult days. The Bible has the answer.

Now the multitude of those who believed were of one heart and one soul; neither did anyone say that any of the things he possessed was his own, but they had all things in common. Acts 4:32

Impressive structures, tourist-ready images, picturesque farms, and profitable businesses are wonderful but, they offer neither salvation nor peace/solace for the hurting heart and soul.   People have many needs. Among other things, we need healing, love, connection and shepherding.

Need for healing.

When people hurt, everything looks like a mountain. Life looks impossible. Hours are long. In that environment, the church is to be the source of answers for hurting hearts and souls.

Jesus loved people. He took them seriously – even their sinful mistakes. He took their ruined reputations and their damaged dignity and loved them where they were. His love counseled them to not continue in sinful, self-destructive behavior. His love gave them reason to grow. Real understanding and experiencing love is what all people need if they are to be healed. Jesus knew that. Jesus did that.


Need for Love

We all need love that we do not deserve – the love of God and the love of brother and sister. When we realize our love-hunger and when we realize that only God can satisfy that hunger, then and only then do we begin to grow. We stop lashing out and we retreat to our closet where we meet with God alone. It is God’s love that changes us into the real person He made us to be. Jesus takes us seriously and meets us where we are.

When we are taken seriously, in our wounds and sin and shame, only then we can stop fighting and begin to acknowledge our need. Only then we can be honest with ourselves and with others and with God. Only then we can accept the love that God gives through the love of those around us. Only then are we prepared to share that love to others.

Need for connection

We are made for connection. We need to connect to God and to each other. Connection makes us safe and also makes us feel safe. We know we are safe and are free to be our dignified selves because we are loved and are in company where we feel safe because we are safe. Safe means  that we have close friends who will support and guide us. God’s longing is for Him to be our God and for us to be His people. That is the heart of Father God.


Need for shepherding 

Jesus saw the sheep without a shepherd

In Mark 6:34 Jesus observed the many people and He saw them as sheep without a shepherd. What did He do?

“He taught them many things.”

Jesus was a teacher. They called Him Master – Master means teacher. Doctor also means teacher. So, trained persons are supposed to be teachers. Those called to be shepherds must be teachers.

Jesus is the model for teaching. He used stories and illustrations and to-the-point wordings. He was not bashful to call sin, sin. He was not afraid to point out the hypocrisy of the religious leaders. He was soft and gentle to the hurting. He was kind to the repentant. The unrepentant found Him to be direct and unrelenting.

The Biblical qualifications for Church leaders are mostly about character. One noted skill that they need is, “ability to teach.” As leaders and teachers our task is to make the Word of God come alive for the people. They should leave our messages with new appreciation for truth and they should be moved by the love of God that flows through us.


Need for Leaders

Leaders or managers?

Leaders know the times and know what Israel (their people) ought to do. They also know how to guide their people where they need to go.  They are men of integrity who will stand alone when need-be and are not for sale at any price.

Managers are part of loyalty systems that preserve the system at all and any cost. They will marginalize or eliminate anyone who attempts to bring truth to bear on their lives or to the organization.

We desperately need leaders. We have too many managers already. Self-sacrificing leaders are the cry of the day. Wise, Holy Spirit directed men who live and walk and talk with God

May you find healing. May you bring healing to others. If you are a leader, then shepherd those around you and bring healing to them. That way we will have communities who will bring healing to hurting hearts and minds and souls.

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