1 Corinthians 16:13-14 "Watch, stand fast in the faith, be brave, be strong. Let all that you do be done with love."

Thursday, October 18, 2012

It's Not Always All About You

In our Christian lives we tend to think on a very level and straight plane. We can get to a place that we can only see in front of our noses and make our life all about us. We do well to follow God and His purposes for our lives, but when hard times come we tend to think it is all about us.

The thing I have learned over the years is that God is a masterful designer. Since He does know the beginning from the end, He can weave me (and my life) into the lives of others that I may not even know. This is best looked at from the analogy of a beautiful dress. We are merely one strand or piece and can't necessarily see the final outcome. When we look at ourselves, all we see is a useless string. When God looks at us, and the rest of His creation, He sees a beautiful outcome of all things working together.

I have had the personal experience of going through something like this recently. I thought that everything was going well and we were following what the Lord had for us. We were at peace with what we were doing and where we were going. Taking steps of faith, but always praying and seeking the Lord's wisdom. Then, as we were moving along, things seemed to come to a stop. Not slowing down, but really a stop. God seemed to be working, but not with us. It was a weird time, looking back I can see that God was working on me...more on that in a moment.

We prayed and started to wonder if we had made some wrong choices. Of course, this was putting everything back on us and not keeping our eyes on our Creator. It is amazing how fast one can go from a faith led life back to rewards based life.

As we were progressing along in our walk, God was also working on other people. You see, we as believers make up the whole body. It is not just one person working while the rest cheer him on. God has a masterful plan that we must all work together for His common purpose. So with that in mind and after several weeks, I realized that God was working in someone else's life as He was waiting to give us the okay for our next step.

What did this cause us to do? Pray. Pray for that individual fervently. Our prayers went from focusing on us and what we were doing to what God was doing through this person. It caused us to take our eyes off of our situation and see a bigger picture through the eyes of God. The amazing thing is, had we moved ahead like we thought, the whole thing would not have worked out like it did. God still had work to do, but it wasn't only in us.

I think that as Christians we can tend to keep God in our own world or box. God is so much greater and bigger than we give Him credit for. He can multitask as well, and usually does. My encouragement to you is don't get so focused on your own world and know that God is working in the lives of people around you. Remember, God may be working on you while somebody else is waiting to move forward.

Grace and Peace,

Bob Scott

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Already but not yet

Wow! What a whirlwind this last month has been. I have been a bit slack in our blog posts and many of you have either emailed or messaged me about what is going on. Sorry for the delay, things are...fun right now.

Bobby is growing like a weed. It is amazing how quickly they can reach things on the table with no effort anymore. He is talking all the time now. The majority of his words are only known to him and occasionally to his mom and dad. He runs and plays and is all boy, what a blessing from the Lord.

Our number two child is doing very well too. She appears to be coming right along and is due the first week of January. Since they don't give our prizes for the first baby born in the new year, we decided not to try and force it :) We are excited to be a two child family, a bit nervous, but overall we look forward to it.

The Apostle Paul said in Philippians 4:12 "Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me." This is where we are right now. Knowing that we are in the right spot doing what the Lord has for us, but also knowing there is so much more that He has.

We have officially moved into a school to meet on Sunday nights. This is a huge answer to prayer. God is so faithful to answer our prayers even when we lose sight of our calling. We were praying to be meeting in a facility before the end of the month and God made it happen a couple of weeks early. We will transition to a Sunday morning once we get some more kids ministry workers. You can keep that in your prayers for us.

For us, this is just the beginning of our long journey that the Lord has set us on. Many of you have been with us since 2008 when we started raising money for our first missionary journey to Uganda. Who knew that the Lord had this in mind some 4 years later. We thank you for all of your prayers and support throughout the years. God has used so many of you to encourage us, many times without you even knowing it.

We still have a long way to go, but we know that the Lord is looking over us. We covet your prayers even more now. We can see that the enemy is going to do all that he can to stop us from continuing, but we are steadfast and press on in the calling the Lord has given us. We know why the has laid hold of us and with this assurance, we will persevere.

Grace and Peace,

Bob, Suzanne and Bobby Scott

You can check out our new website at, www.revivetableview.co.za.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

What I've Learned: Humility

First of all, let me be clear...I have not finished learning how to be humble in every area of life. I think this is a constant learning process, one that will reach completion only when we enter into the joy of the Lord. Until then, we are stuck with our prideful self that can show it's ugly head at the most inopportune times.

I have witnessed true humility. I have seen men give the most outstanding sermons and not even realize the words they were speaking into people's lives. I have heard the most wonderful music played that touched the hearts of thousands and the composer not even know what he had done. There are those with a true gift to humility, and there are those who possess a humility that comes from thinking less of themselves.

The Bible says that we must humble ourselves so the Lord may lift us up. God receives the glory when you are lifted up! Jesus said in Matthew 5:16 "Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven." As we are humble, God will put good works before us. The apostle Paul exhorts us in Ephesians 2:10 "For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them." You and I were created for good works! We are supposed to be doing good works, but for God to get the glory. Not for us to have a false sense of humility, but to truly give God the credit.

When it is all finished, we will see that it was God who gave us the good works to do, it was God who gave us the grace and strength to do the good works and it was God who rewarded us for doing them. So where does that leave us in the equation? Faith. We are to have faith in God for our salvation, our sanctification and our glorification. Hebrews 11:6 says "But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him." How do we please God...trust in Him. Have faith that in due time you will be lifted up...by God.

It is okay to be lifted up, when it is on God's terms. I have seen men become powerful and popular Christians only to fall down when they realized they were standing on the pedestal made with hands of man. On the contrary, there are Godly, meek men whom God has placed in this world to be our examples. Men who take praise and reflect it to where it belongs...God.

Don't beat yourself up, God isn't. Stand strong knowing that God has great things for you when you become His child. If all else fails, start by cleaning the toilets. Many godly men have spent years on their knees scrubbing up after people. No job is beneath you, Jesus came to serve, so shall we.

Grace and Peace,

Bob Scott

Friday, July 27, 2012

What I've Learned: Idolatry

Since moving to South Africa in January, I have had plenty of opportunity to learn what things I really depend on. I believe, like many of us, I thought that I didn't have any idols in my life. I can honestly say that Suzanne and I don't bow down before any graven images and worship.

But what happens when things get stirred up a bit? What happens when things don't go according to plan?

Suzanne and I took our first trip to Cape Town in July of 2011 to see if it would be a good place for us and to see if the Lord had work here that He would want us to do. I can honestly say, ever since taking that step of faith our lives have never been the same. After spending 10 days here, we returned to Uganda to nothing but turmoil from our staff and a whirlwind of various strange things happening out of the ordinary.

What have I learned from that point until now? I found that I trust myself more than I trust God. I've learned that when something is amiss, I turn to my own talents or knowledge and try to figure things out. Though God has endowed us with a certain amount of wisdom, He is still the one that we must look to for all things. I am slowly making the transition from depending on me when I can't do it to depending on God...period. Not only when I can't do something, but all the time. God wants all of our lives, not just the stuff that we can't do.

Though church planting teaches one many, many things...none is more important than a total and complete reliance on God. It sounds so easy at times "Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature?" Matt. 6:25. So don't worry...yeah right! There is such a tendency to look around at our situations and measure them up to our standards and make out plans to get through them. If you are looking to anything but God...it is idolatry! The next logical question is, then what...what are we supposed to do?

First of all, rest and know that God is in complete control. There are no surprises to God. Do you believe that He is sovereign? Do you believe that He has nothing the but the best in store for you? He does! God does not sit around looking for opportunities to smite the very same people He sent His Son to die for.

Second, what are you seeking after? This sounds so basic, but the question is so searching. Are you seeking after the things of the Kingdom or the things of the world? This will tell you where your heart is. Jesus commands us in Matthew 6:33-34 to seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness. That is all!

We can rest knowing that God promised that He will take care of us if we are seeking after Him. I know it is easier to say than to do, but God just wants all of us...every bit.

The gospel doesn't end with salvation...this is where it only begins!

Grace and Peace,

Bob Scott

Monday, July 2, 2012

Know and Grow

As a baby needs milk to grow, so we too as believers need God's Word to mature. The Bible makes several claims that those who call themselves Christians should be attentive to. One such claim is that a clear mark of a saved (Christian) individual is the fact they are growing in knowledge of God, and such things.

Peter talks about this in his second epistle. In verse 5 he says "...giving all diligence, add to your faith..." then in verse 8 he says "For if these things are you and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ."

The exhortation is clear, give all diligence (persistence, attention) to add to your faith. If you are a believer, you should be adding to your faith. Not in a legalistic way hoping to earn something in return, but in response to the love and grace that God, through Jesus, has shown you. You should be growing in your walk with the Lord.

He then goes on to say that if we are diligent to know these things, we will not be barren nor unfruitful in our knowledge of the Lord. God wants us to know as much about Him as we can! God wants us to be fruitful in the works that He has planned for us. We will only know the works He has for us by learning more and more about Him.

I encourage you to take a quick look and see where you were 5 or 10 years ago with the Lord. Have you grown? Did you make some foolish mistakes back then that you are not making today? That is actually good...that means that you are growing! We start with the milk of the Word and then God moves us onto the meat. He has such wonderful things for us that He has already planned out and waits for us to walk in them.

Pray...Read your bible...Fellowship with other believers...

Grace and Peace,

Bob, Suzanne and Bobby Scott

Saturday, June 16, 2012

You Are Not Alone

Have you ever been in a season of life where you thought that God was not there? You were not necessarily being disciplined for any wrong doing, but you just had a hard time finding the presence of God. You pray, read your Bible...still nothing.

There is a tendency to think that you are the only one who has or is going through this. You put on a good show for all around, but inside there is nothing alive. It is not your salvation you are worried about, but you wonder when you will hear from God again. You look around and everyone seems to have it all together. They have everything figured out. You can't possibly talk to them, they would have no idea what you are talking about and they probably would think you are eccentric.

I want to encourage you that you are not alone. Every believer goes through these times when they are just unsettled, not knowing where or when their next step is. We have to believe, not in our emotions but in the fact that God is always there, even if we don't feel Him. Psalm 73:25-26 "Whom have I in heaven but you? And there is none upon earth that I desire besides you. My flesh and my heart fail; but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever." God is there and will be forever. Lean on His strength knowing that He has given us great and precious promises of an eternal life spent with Him.

When David was in despair he cried out "Give ear to my prayer, O God, and do not hide yourself  from my supplication. Attend to me, and hear me; I am restless in my complaint, and moan noisily." Psalm 55:1-2 The Lord was always David's strength. If he was running for his life from Saul or surrounded by enemies before the battle, David constantly drew upon the strength that God had.

I just want to encourage you that as times get tough turn to God for your strength. The God of old is the same God today, ready and willing to come to the aid of all who call upon His name. Try not to rely on your own understanding or advice, seek the face of the Lord. Though at times He may seem silent, I promise He is always working.

Grace and Peace,

Bob Scott

Thursday, May 31, 2012

What does church mean to you?

St.Vitus Cathedral Prague, Czech Republic
There is much talk today about the purpose of the church. Does the church exist to feed the poor, help the helpless, give shelter to the homeless; or, is it there to give the gospel message of salvation through Jesus to a lost and wayward world? Some believe that the church only helps those that are within her doors. If you are not a regular member, giving offerings and tithes, then there really is no help for you. I am not a person of extremes so I believe that the church should be somewhere in the middle of all that. 

I have had the privilege of teaching through the book of Ephesians for our Sunday night REVIVE Bible study meetings at our house. Ephesians 4 is most often quoted when people talk about "doing" church. 

Let's first look at Ephesians 4:11-12. Paul is saying that Jesus gave some of us the gifts to be leaders in a church. Their offices were apostles, prophets, evangelists and pastor-teacher.

Why? Verse 12 gives us the reasons "for the equipping of the saints for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ." These people that Jesus chose for these positions were there to serve the people that Jesus had given to the church. David Guzik said "The purpose of these gifts of leadership is also clear. It is that saints (God’s people) might be equipped for the work of ministry (service), so that the body of Christ would be built up (expanded and strengthened)." 

Are you being built up at church? Is your pastor-teacher feeding you the whole counsel of God? There is a large responsibility that falls upon the leadership of the church, but the saints must also be responsible. They must come to church with open minds, hearts and Bibles ready to learn all that God has for them. Chuck Smith said about these verses “The primary purpose of the Church isn’t to convert sinners to Christianity, but to perfect (complete and mature) the saints for the ministry and edification of the Body.”

Why is it important to be built up in the Word of God at church? Paul tells us in verse 16 that only when the whole church is functioning together will we see true growth, both spiritually and numerically. It is when each person in the body of Christ comes together and uses the spiritual gifts that God has given them. Paul says "by which every part does its share." Are you doing your share? Are you serving at the church that you attend? Do you know what your spiritual gifts are that God has given you?

By doing all these things in the church, it will naturally flow over into our everyday life. Being a servant within the walls of the church will motivate you to be a servant in your own community. Jesus said that He did not come to be served but to serve others. Jesus is our example of ministry, being a servant. 

So, I believe that the church leaders are there to equip those in the body for service. Those in the body (and the church leadership) are to be serving those outside the church, the poor and destitute among the fallen world. But, their first concern is for their spiritual well-being and then for their physical needs. We are to be beacons of light to this fallen generation. We are to do good works so that when people see them they praise God in heaven. 

My hope is that whatever church you are attending, you are being taught the Word of God first and foremost. The Bible is God speaking to us, period. My hope is also that by learning about God and His love towards us, you will then be motivated by that love to good works for others. 

We must remember to keep the main thing - the main thing...Jesus. 

Grace and Peace, 

Bob, Suzanne and Bobby Scott