Missing the Message

This is our reason for living. Here, on this side of the grave, in full view of Satan and his forces and of God and His angels, we are clothed in our eternal mandate. It is here and now, while the darkness grows stronger and faith is still necessary, that we must embrace our fundamental function: We were brought into being to engage God’s heart, not just to meet man’s need.  ~ Victoria Brooks

Designed to engage God’s heart, not just to meet man’s need. What a radical and terrifying concept. I’d always thought that was how I engaged God’s heart, by meeting people’s needs.

When I first read these words I was lost. I knew how to meet needs. I had no idea how to minister to the heart of One Who has no need.

It was as if I’d spent my life speed-reading through the Gospels where Jesus said: Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment.

And, instead, I’d been skipping right to the next verse. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself.

Somehow, somewhere, I’d decided to love God by loving my neighbor instead of loving my neighbor because I loved God with all my heart and soul and mind.

I’d missed the Message. It is here and now, while the darkness grows stronger and faith is still necessary, that we must embrace our fundamental function: We were brought into being to engage God’s heart, not just to meet man’s need.

Author: Debbie

A former counselor and public speaker, I'm grateful for many, many things - God's grace most of all!

27 thoughts on “Missing the Message”

  1. I agree with Heidi – definitely a love button!
    LOVING HIM FIRST – if we don’t do that we don’t have as much to share with others. May you continually be filled so you can keep overflowing!

    1. Dear Judi –
      I love seeing your face here and hearing your heart.
      You’re so right. Whenever I’ve tried to just come up with it all on my own I’ve been more miss than hit!
      ~ Debbie

    1. Hello Katharine!
      Well put!
      He Who is the very definition of love should be the first focus of my love.
      I got quite a bit off track on that one for a very long time. I loved Him in the background instead of as the first and primary focus of my heart.
      Thank you for being here, Katharine!
      ~ Debbie

      1. Debbie, it is my delight to be here. I think we all get off track about something, almost all the time. I often wonder what things I think now, will be obsolete when I am more experienced. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully . . .

      2. Oh Katharine – that’s me to a tee!
        Although I shudder at some of my former attitudes/convictions, I rejoice in the growth that has brought about new ones and pray to change until that day when we no longer look in a mirror dimly!
        Love and grace to you,
        ~ Debbie

  2. Oh this quieted me and made me cry, gracious one. It can be easier in some ways, to try meeting needs, serving. I think He had to let me bottom out trying it that way first, in order for me to first seek to engage His heart. Now I find that I can’t get through my day, without at least trying to tug on His heart strings. (like at Paulette’s blog!) God bless you as you bless Him today, and others.
    love and prayers – the other deb

    1. Dear Deb –
      Me, too.
      I was pretty broken before I finally learned that fixing wasn’t my job.
      Much love to you and our bug loving Aub!
      ~ Debbie

  3. WOW, this is so good (as usual)–and now I wonder if I need to re-write tomorrow’s post (Share Your World Week–“success”). Are you feeling better, I hope? Thinking and praying for you lots and lots, so I hope my prayers have “availeth-ed much”!

    By the by, I saw “The Help”–twice! Flawless film–and I’m a harsh critic. Now I want to read the book–thanks for the recommend. I have one for you, but can’t find my note….stay tuned. God bless you Big–love, sis Caddo

    1. Hello Caddo S.G.P.G!
      Thank you for your prayers. They’re greatly appreciated.
      Some nights are rough, some not so bad! 😀
      I’m glad you enjoyed the movie. It’s one where I thought the movie was a really nice compliment to the book. Of course, I continue to be amazed at my naivete. So sad and unthinkable.
      It makes me even more said to see many in the body of believers feeling fine about holing similar reactions to people they don’t understand or agree with.
      We currently don’t have a VCR or any days off until August, but I’d love to hear your recommendations! 😀
      ~ Debbie

  4. Thank you once again for a wonderful message Debbie. We need to love God first, and then out of the overflow of the love He has for us…we love others. To bad that is not as easy as it sounds.

    One day at a time, One love we find
    One person we see, One love we give
    One Father we have, One family we are

    Blessings Debbie

    1. Greg –
      Beautifully put – “out of the overflow”! I love that. Too often I’ve been the source instead of relying on the source, and I get tapped out – but God doesn’t.
      Thank you, my friend,
      ~ Debbie

      1. I’m a contributing commenter! It sounded funny…what can I say?

        Seriously, I agree we need to heed The Source and stop trying to fill His shoes.

  5. Some people’s needs are never met no matter what we do to try and meet them. Also, if we don’t take care of ourselves and our own relationship with God, we might not be well-enough to help others with their needs. As always, thank you for your wise words.

    1. Lori –
      So true. Part of my problem was that I saw ‘meeting needs’ as such a calling (I think you probably get that) that anything short of every bit of my energy and focus directed that way seemed wrong.
      It never occurred to me that I was short changing God in the process!
      Thank you so much for being here,
      ~ Debbie

  6. I’m so disappointed that I wasn’t the first to hit the Like button because I’m moved by this one enough to want a Love button! The topic of this one goes deep with you. The form of this blog doesn’t allow exploration to the depths of the truth and the radical transformation of your life that I’ve witnessed.

    Victoria was an awesome influence. I thank God for what she taught you and what I’ve learned from you and her book since that time. You are wise. You’ve learned well and I’m so glad you share the gems here. But this one…well… I think a person has to live with this one for a while to really value the transforming power of this discovery. You’ve lived it. It’s been an incredible journey to watch.

    1. Heidi –
      You’re too generous, but thank you. 😀
      I think Vicky’s book would have touched me no matter what, but knowing her, watching her live it, doubled the impact.
      She was a wise and kind and tender mentor at a time when I was shattered.
      Thank you for hanging in there with me while God puts the pieces back together, bit by bit.
      ~ Debbie

      1. Debbie– The pieces add up to more than the original version. I’m so happy for you and the peace you’ve found. It’s been a privilege to watch you grow and live such a beautiful testimony to His grace.

  7. Your heart and faith will sustain you always. The fact that you share your thoughts, heart, grace and faith with me, sustains me as well, and i know how grounded your foundation is: It is with God, and that is powerful. Thank you for sharing this. I hope things are going ok?

    1. dear Mel –
      All is well, my friend.
      Reading Vicky’s book set me off on this journey of grace 5 years ago. I hope to never recover! 😉
      ~ Debbie

    1. Debby –
      I think the whole concept of loving God with all of my heart and soul and mind was/is so mind bending that it’s simply easier to skip right on ahead to “showing it” by loving my neighbor.
      The problem then becomes the source.
      ~ Debbie

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