“Not About You - Not About Now!”

As many of you are aware, I was installed as Pastor of HOPE Church - Raleigh this past Sunday.  It was a very special day for HOPE, for me, and for my family.  I want to thank all that joined us for worship.  Dr. Rob Westlund, pastor of Englewood EPC in Rocky Mount, NC was the preacher for our worship.  Rob also gave the “Charge to the Pastor” as it is called in the service.  This charge is usually words of wisdom conferred on the incoming pastor, a challenge of sorts, moving forward in their new roll.

The phase Rob used will forever be engrained in my spirit.  He said he was attending a conference where Max Lucado was speaking and Max stood up and opened by saying, “It’s not about you and it’s not about now.”  Rob said those words broke him.  These words resonate in my spirit also, for you see, these words are true for us all.  It is not about me or you, but it is about HIM, He who came, He who died, He who conquered death, forgave sin, offered new life, eternal life in His name by believing in Him.  It’s not about now, but about His kingdom, where eternity is spent.  It’s about His glory and purpose, not ours, not mine.

This phase runs absolutely counter to today’s culture.  This phase, “Not about you, not about now” smacks the “me” culture, the “self” mentality in the face.  We are told, bombarded with all the time, it’s about me and what makes me happy.  Just do it!!!  Right?  It’s about now.  Live your life to the fullest today.  Get it all in today, society tells us, live now!!!  Don’t worry, don’t look to the future, that’s not where it’s at.  If you were to go on our college campuses today and share this message, “It’s not about you, not about now” they would look at you as if you were from another planet.  But folks, how true these words are.

When we are called by the Master, when He enters our life, when we are a “new creation” in Him, it becomes about Him, about His kingdom, and His glory.  He made it about us, didn’t He?  Listen to Jesus’ prayer to His Father in heaven as recorded by the Apostle John in chapter 17 called “The High Priestly Prayer.”

“The glory which You have given Me I have given to them, that they may be one, just as We are one; I in them and You in Me, that they may be perfected in unity, so that the world may know that You sent Me, and loved them, even as You have loved Me.  Father, I desire that they also, whom You have given Me, be with Me where I am so that they may see My glory which You have given Me, for You loved Me before the foundations of the world.”  John 17:22-24

In this passage there are two “so that.”  First, He prays for unity, oneness, so that, the world my know Him!!!  You see, it’s about Him, Him being known, not me, not you.  Secondly, He prays Father I want them with Me so that, they may see My glory you have given Me.  It’s not about now, but about His kingdom, His glory!!!  What a message we have to share.  He laid it all on the cross.  Without the cross there is no church, no indwelling of the Holy Spirit, no conquering of death.  It’s not about me, it’s not about you.  It’s about Him!!!  It’s not about now, but our witness.  His story is to call us to a greater cause, His glory, to His kingdom come!!!

Pastor Rob closed my charge on Sunday with this passage from Colossians 1:28-29a “We proclaim Him, admonishing everyone and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we may present everyone complete in Christ.  For this purpose I labor.”  You see the “so that” again.  

“It’s not about me - It’s not about Now!”  I pray that this phase might invade you as it has invaded me.  May it serve a purpose to call us all to a greater focus on Him and His kingdom, His glory.  Thanks Rob for the challenge and the blessing. 

Blessings my friends,

Pastor Marty

 September 19th - 2nd Annual HOPE Women’s Conference -  Click Here for More Details:  Missions

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