John 17:6-8 Do you have a need to be recognised by others?
“I have manifested your name to the people whom you gave me out of the world. Yours they were, and you gave them to me, and they have kept your word. Now they know that everything that you have given me is from you. For I have given them the words that you gave me, and they have received them and have come to know in truth that I came from you; and they have believed that you sent me.” John 17:6-8
Jesus’ prayer showed that He lived life from the very beginning with a clear purpose: to accomplish what the Father sent Him to do. He was not emotionally held ransomed to His accomplishments. His work and ministry was never to feed His personal need for recognition but for the salvation of the world. Many served others out of a need to be needed; they use ministry as a means to fulfill their personal need for public recognition.
1. “I have manifested your name to the people…”
The objective of Jesus’ ministry is to make known the Father’s values system to the people and to reconcile them back to God. In doing so, Jesus established the Father’s Kingdom on earth. Everything Jesus did, originated from the Father; the words He spoke, the places He went, the miracles He did and the people He had chosen. The Father is the sovereign ruler, and Jesus is the obedient executer of the Father’s plans.
2. …whom you gave me out of the world. Yours they were, and you gave them to me… Now they know that everything that you have given me is from you..”
Everything that Jesus had including His disciples came from the Father. Jesus was careful from the very start to direct the disciple’s focus to the Father who sent Him. And that He would one day return to the Father who is the Possessor of all things.
1. We are not owners but stewards of everything that we build or possess on earth. Thereafter, we have to leave everything that we have built and return to the Father. Only those things that God give back to us as reward shall remain. Martin Luther said, “I have held many things in my hands, and have lost them all; but whatever I place in God’s hands, I still possess.” Hence, we must never hold onto earthly things but obey what God has commanded, and we will receive our reward from Him. Jesus “lost” all things when He died, but gained all things when the Father resurrected Him.
2. The goal of a disciple or minister is never to possess anything on earth, but to use what we have to establish the Father’s Kingdom. We are not to establish our name or to build our own kingdom or ministry. The minister’s or disciple maker’s effectiveness is measured by his ability to influence the people towards the worship of God, towards purity, love and courage. The fruitfulness of a church is measured not by its size, but by its ability to influence society towards the values system of the Kingdom. It is of utmost importance that members must rectify their life vision and demonstrate the values of the Kingdom in their personal lives.
1. Try asking the question: What motivates your service towards others? Is your ministry birthed out of a love for others or a need to be recognized?
2. Do not look for ways to make money, but for ways to improve people’s lives. Great business ideas come when we defocus from the goal of making money to seek out ways to make this world a better place.
3. You can start testing God of His faithfulness by being faithful in your tithes and offerings. However, it is not the money that God is concerned, but your heart of generosity and trust in God to provide. While you give cheerfully, not looking for an immediate return, but being joyful of the blessings that you have given to others. And God will bless you in ways that you cannot imagine. He will start by blessing you with things that money cannot buy: peace and joy in the family, health and fulfillment in your career, and the anointing to exercise the gifts of the Spirit etc.
Dear Lord, I release all that I possess into Your hands. I know that no one can out give Your generosity. I ask You to multiply my possessions even as I give out of love and gratitude. Give me wisdom in line of work to improve the lives of people. Father, everything that I possess belongs to You, and everything that is Yours is my inheritance. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.