Dear Salvation Army,
is our mission still for souls?
Are we stubbornly standing between souls condemned and the gates of hell itself?
Are we still the voice calling out for justice when all other voices are silent or too broken to speak? Can we boldly declare in faith that “we’re going to fill, fill, fill the world with glory?”
Dear soldier, no matter who you are, no matter what rank you hold, no matter if you hold a position of power and prominence or you simply come to your corps hall on Sundays – we are all equally vital not only to The Salvation Army, but to this mighty Kingdom building process that the Holy Spirit is doing in our world today! This require faithfulness and diligence on our part. If we merely offer lip service to God and don’t believe that He will provide the way, then we already defeated. Where ever your ministry is located in our world, without faith, hope and love we are doomed to only good works which isn’t enough! No, we must still be willing to storm the forts of darkness. We must be prepared to stand firm even when the ground of culture and morality erodes at our feet. We cannot lose ground and cave to becoming complacent or comfortable. Our calling has never been one of apathy but empathy, compassion and grace.
A Word Of Warning To Empire Building:
Dear soldier, I will also caution you that if you come to this army seeking notoriety, position, power and to establish and build your empire, these efforts will severely damage our mission as a movement. This is not a platform for showboating or ego stroking. This army should never be about climbing the ladder of corporate success or vying for places of authority…and yet I fear it has happened and currently does happen. Some will contend that these are isolated incidents, but it boils down to matters of the heart and depth of our surrender to Christ himself. John the baptist even declared about Jesus – “He must become greater; I must become less.” (John 3:30) And when the disciples were arguing about who would be the greatest disciple – Jesus pointed to the little children and told them “…For it is the one who is least among you all who is the greatest.” (Luke 9:48)
Jesus had a way of turning common practice on its head.
Perhaps as an Army need to do this from time to time; to buck trends or notions of common practice in order to experience full surrender and lead with compassion and grace.
Dear Soldier, if you are currently building an empire – perhaps it’s time to seek repentance and reconciliation or depart this movement altogether. This may be strong words to read, but you are not helping to spur on this movement, you are attempting to subvert it with selfish ambitions and sinful pride. Either humble yourselves or you will be humbled by God. I say these words first to myself and then to anyone else this may apply to. Without the constant and compassionate correction of the Holy Spirit how can we ever expect to grow and mature into this faith? And what is this faith, but a transformation of our selfishness into selflessness and the image of Christ in and through everything that we are and do.
Lastly, let me encourage you.
Each and every one of you are important to God’s kingdom.
Don’t ever forget this. Regardless of how human leadership has treated you in the past whether within the Army or from outside (for we know that all forms of leadership has its flaws and imperfections but for the King of kings and Lord of Lords) YOU. MAKE. A. DIFFERENCE! You matter!! Do not listen to anyone who only has criticism or harmful things to say to you that does not help build to you up. Surround yourself with encouragers who will challenge you to be all that you can be for Christ Jesus. Live for Him. Die to self, and know that we serve a mighty army that is so much bigger than any one person, name or rank. We have to get serious about making disciples in our Army. We have to tear down walls of division and bring reconciliation to our corners of the world.
Do not become overwhelmed in this work that you do…one day at a time, one heart at a time…when we are faithful to Him, He will provide the strength and wisdom that we require in order to march on. Stand firm, Dear Soldier…Stand firm.
Something more to ponder today.
To God be the glory!
Disclaimer: “The thoughts and opinions expressed here are not necessarily the thoughts and opinions of The Salvation Army, but are that of the author of this blog, reader discretion is advised.”