Prioritizing the 'Oil of Intimacy' (Matt. 25:1-13) as We Serve God
The other day, I was watching Mike Bickle’s sermon on the Parable of the Ten Virgins (Cultivating the Oil of Intimacy with the Bridegroom God Pt. 1 - Passion for Jesus, 12 Dec 2018, @ihopkc). I knew the general premise, to keep watch and not get lazy because we don’t know when Jesus will return. But it was only through this sermon that I realised all of these Ten Virgins were ministry leaders!
In this parable (Matthew 25:1-13), Jesus’ warning is that the wise can become foolish if they neglect to continue to cultivate intimacy with Jesus (as they previously did when they went met the Bridegroom in 25:1).
Those who were foolish took their lamps and took no oil with them, but the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. Oil here speaks of the presence or the anointing of the Spirit touching our heart as we spend time with God (1 Jn. 2:20, 27). This describes those who pursue more ministry activity before acquiring the “oil of intimacy” in their walk with Jesus.
The wise ministries … pursued acquiring oil as their first priority before seeking to expand and network their ministry.
What a great reminder! Time with the Holy Spirit is the sweetest, and yet sometimes we can let our flesh convince us to replace needed time with him with our to do lists … to serve God with less God time and more human effort. Silly. I can be guilty of this too, it’s a daily heart check to remember that nothing and no one is more important than God. ❤️
As I was praying this morning, I felt God bring Matthew 5:14-16 to mind:
*“You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden. No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.
Let’s be lights, friends! Shining his light for all to see.
May we walk with joy, not in shame for messing up sometimes, but with full confidence that we are loved by God and he is delighted to give us more, bigger, bolder opportunities to serve him with him. Let’s dream big and do more together with God.
Our God reigns. ✨
*Hallelujah our God reigns, over the nations, over every disease. Forever and all my days, hallelujah. Forever and all my days, hallelujah. (God, I look to you (Acoustic) - Jenn Johnson | Moment)