I got back from Kenya on Saturday afternoon. It was a great trip with a wonderful team of people. I will be back in Kenya in early August and I look forward to bringing another team of people so they can see for themselves why I go so often.
This week I hope to finish up my project for my Doctor of Ministry, which is a book-size proposal outlining the need for Life Purpose Centers in each and every church to help raise up purpose champions, not just for church work but for every area of human life and culture. While finishing, I was given a book entitled Creation Regained by Albert M. Wolters.
In that book, Wolters outlines a thought that is throughout my project, and that is that the Jesus went to the cross not just to forgive sins, but to restore everything as it was to be before the Fall. Jesus came to reconcile all things to God, including creation. And that's where purpose comes in. You and I have an assignment, I call it our Garden Work, that we must fulfill to spread the rule of God into every area of life, including the arts, business, education and government.
One of the concepts in the book that I appreciated was what Wolters had to say about aggression:
Hateful aggression is the perversion of a good creational gift. To oppose it is to oppose not the gift but the perversion. The call for Christians, therefore is to sanctify agression, not to repress it. Meekness and aggression need not be contradictory. Paul tells Timothy that the Lord's servant must be kind and forbearing, "In meekness correcting them that oppose themselves" (1 Timothy 2:25, ASV). There the verb translated "correct" (paideuein) - normally rendered "chasten" or "chastise" - has a strongly aggressive connotation.
I cannot tell you how many passive Christians I talk to every week. They are so afraid of going too far that they end up not even starting! They are so afraid to be aggressive for fear that it is unChristian that they decide to be passive and "wait on the Lord." There are many who tell me, "I don't want to get ahead of the Lord." My usual response is, "Concernig your purpose, please try." If God can do exceedingly and abundantly beyond all you can ask or think (see Ephesians 3:20), please tell me how you can "get ahead" of him as you pursue your purpose.
I told you that I am going back to Kenya because I seldom leave Africa before I have my next trip planned. My next book is at the publisher and will be out in three months. I am finishing up my second doctorate in May. I am choosing my classes to teach for Geneva College's Master's of Organizational Leadership for the coming year. There was a day when I waited on the Lord to do what only I can do. Now I am trying to "sanctify" my aggression and run as far and as fast for as long as I can. That may be only a few more days - only God knows - but for now, I am on the move. I invite you to join me and put your passive ways and days behind you. Have a great week!