One of my favourite passages of scripture is Ezekiel chapter 37: The Valley of Dry Bones.
This amazing prophesy describes where "very dry" bones are raised to life, even with flesh and breath, "This is what the Sovereign Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life" (Ezekiel chapter 37, verse 5).
The reason I like it is because it depicts a seemingly impossible event which comes to pass by God's power alone.
Possible with God's help
When out on the frontline, trying to win souls for the Lord, you quickly learn one thing: "What is impossible with men is possible with God." For this task in particular, when we rely on our own efforts for success, we struggle and can't attain the outcome we desire.
It is like trying to push someone through a gate without the keyâit doesn't work. Jesus says, "No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him." (John chapter 6, verse 44)
Whilst telling people about Jesus, in the hope they will ask him into their life, we must understand what we are trying to do is the equivalent of raising the dead to life. It is obvious this is not possible by our own ability.
Jesus says, "I tell you the truth, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life." (John chapter 5, verse 24)
In essence, when doing the Lord's work, don't focus on your own abilities, worrying what you are going to say or do, or even where to start.
Simply ask of the Lord to provide someone he has drawn, someone who may be open to his word though you. This way we cannot claim it was us that created the miracle, but God's power doing it in our sight.
On the frontline
And the best part, like in the 'Dry Bones' example from Ezekiel, is God lets us take the frontline position in doing his will. That is, while Ezekiel was the one who prophesied, God was the one who made breath enter the bones.
So you can say, 'God has given us authority to do such things'.
Jesus says, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age."(Matthew chapter 28, verses 18-20)
With Jesus' authority
If a king sends a messenger to instruct a person to do something, it happens because the king has given the messenger authority, and through the king's authority they listen.
Note that it would not be correct for the messenger to believe it was through his own power that others would obey.
In the same way we must not become conceited that it is through our own abilities that someone moving from death to life happens, but rather it is because we do these things under Jesus' authority.
Tim Robertson is from Sydney, and likes to write about recent learnings in the hope that other people may also benefit from them.
Tim Robertson's previous articles may be found at www.pressserviceinternational.org/tim-robertson.html