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Needed or Included?

I’m a pretty consistent participant in the Facebook Community. I admit it – I like it. I find it fun, a way to keep up and connect with people in a quick and simple fashion, a way to see what others are thinking and doing in the world, and just plain intriguing to see how weird some people really are. I’ve become one of “those!”

One thing I don’t particularly like about Facebook are the advertisements that pop up along the side of my profile page. For the most part, I just ignore them and they don’t induce me to peruse whatever they might be selling or promoting. But one particular ad has caught my attention more than once, and it has been quite disturbing. Its title is, “Heal People with Christ.” And underneath the title is a picture of an obviously strung out addict who needs MY help! Seriously?

One of the most common perceptions (in my opinion, deceptions) I come across in my work with churches and ministry organizations around the world is the idea that God needs us…that somehow if I don’t, then He can’t. It’s quite prolific and sometimes even cultic in the way it’s presented to believers; in some circles, even to the point of claiming, “Their souls are your responsibility.” That’s a pretty heavy burden to carry, not to mention saying a lot about their concept of God.

This advertisement is from a Christian Counseling Degree Program and offers those who have their Christian life together to become a professional at healing those who don’t. Now I assume that if I had a conversation with the Dean of the College, most likely they would say, “That’s not what we meant.” The problem is, they didn’t think through their advertising campaign very well, at least not enough to anticipate what those who really need help might feel about their mode of recruitment, or what it might communicate to those who would consider becoming a “healer.” It’s condemnation to the first and a set-up for failure for the latter.

Acts 17:24-25 tells us:

The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by human hands. And He is not served by human hands, as if He needed anything. Rather, He Himself gives everyone life and breath and everything else.

The miraculous reality is that He includes us in what He’s about, sometimes giving us the privilege of being the conduit of His Life to another, but we are NEVER the source.
God is complete within Himself and not reliant upon anyone to accomplish His will. The miraculous reality is that He includes us in what He’s about, sometimes giving us the privilege of being the conduit of His Life to another, but we are NEVER the source.

What does this little nugget of Truth do for us? Well, for me, it frees me to not have to learn how to heal, serve, preach, evangelize, cast out demons, or anything else. I simply get to breathe…and when Jesus is about something and wants to include me, I’m not needed or responsible…I am however moved to worship, in awe that I am included in His divine desire. Now that’s something to advertise.

Laurie Troublefield

About the Author

Laurie is a part of a wonderful ministry community in Woodstock, GA called, Grace Connections, Inc. where she serves as the Director. She is passionate for the church to know and live in the freedom of the lavished love of Jesus and the grace found in true community. She stays busy teaching conferences, retreats and Bible Studies both here in US and around the world.