Recently a new president was installed at our alma mater. The local pastor who brought the charge to the new president said:
“The greatest gift I can bring to the people of my
congregation is not administrative skill. The
greatest gift I can give to my people is not Bible
teaching. The greatest gift I can give them is a heart
alive to God.”
That fits with our Lord’s statement about the “greatest commandment in the Law.” We are all commanded to “love the Lord thy God with all your heart, mind, soul and strength” (Matthew 23:37).
Loving God means we are alive to God. We are vitally connected to the Head like a body is. It means the tissue, nerves, muscles, attitudes, values and goals of the Living God are the fabric of our lives. Alive to God.
It results in the beauty, vitality, and attitude of God becoming our beauty, our vitality, our attitude. By seeking God, wanting God and pursuing God, God gives a Christian D.A.B.T. (Divine Attitude Beauty Treatments). Such a one is alive to God.
It means we are enthusiastic. The thu in the middle of enthusiastic refers to God. “God in us” is what enthusiastic means.
Have you studied Spiritual Gifts? How about Tim LaHaye’s Temperament Types (Choleric, Sanguine, Melancholy, Phlegmatic)? What about the types of people who John Trent and Gary Smalley label Otter, Golden Retriever, Lion and Beaver? All of these studies have helped me understand myself and others.
But such studies leave us with awareness of our differences (and often – though we should not compare – we find ourselves lacking and less than others who are more gifted). The Apostle Paul indirectly addressed a negative competition in the body when he wrote, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body . . . Because I am not an eye . . . ” (I Corinthians 11:15 & 16). With a heart alive to God there is no basis for comparing or competition because everyone can have a heart alive to God.
Mentally write across the top of all such tools, personality typing and descriptions of Spiritual Gifts the charge to the new president, “be alive to God.”
Expressed graphically, this reality looks like this:
|A H E A R T A L I V E T O G O D|
Briggs Meyer Personality Test, Choleric, Beaver, Sanguine
Otter, Phlegmatic, Taylor-Johnson Temperament Analysis
Golden Retriever, Melancholy, Lion, etc.
A heart alive to God trumps all such classifications and categorizations.
Every believer can be alive to God. No limits, no restraints, no qualifications, no gifts differentiated, no categorizing – just alive to God, no Ph.D. required. It’s not rocket science.
Fast forward to our day and travel to Iraq. A couple, greatly used by God in Brazil, moved to Iraq to serve refugees. He recently wrote to the effect that he wondered if they made the right choice in going to Iraq, since their language skills are minimal. “We do not speak their language, so we are limited in what we are achieving.”
Language? Everyone smiles in the same language. Everyone understands when they are respected, valued, wanted. One’s body can thunder that, leaping the language barrier. God inside a person can’t be hidden. He will bubble up . . . ooze out . . . give off a perfume . . . and shine through. This American man and his Swiss wife are doing a fabulous job of putting God on display because they are alive to God.