Missionary Randy Wise: Moving Forward with Christ Today

Missionary Randy Wise: Moving Forward with Christ Today

Missionary Randy Wise: Moving Forward with Christ Today — Missionary Randy Wise brings us a message explaining that many of us are living the Christian life in our own strength. Instead, we need to allow God to lead in our life.

Key Verses:
Romans 5:9-10

It is a pleasure to be here to see you. Some of you I do not think I am familiar with, a number of you are, and I just appreciate you over the years for your support and prayer for us in our ministry both in New Guinea and up north here in Sanford, Florida. What a privilege it is to serve the Lord. What a privilege to know you have an eternal hope in Him.

A Talent with Language

We look back at our own personal history and think in many cases how we muddled our life and try to do life on our own. It was because of heartache and struggles that came into our life. We recognized we needed a Savior. We needed the light of the world, Jesus Christ, and we needed His Word so we could study it and understand it and walk in the light of it. The Aria church is continuing to go forward. I do not know but there are three or four different locations.

The situation for us is that we have a desire to maybe go back and minister to them at least to some degree. My particular gift is not preaching as you will probably recognize shortly. It turned out, low and behold, I know how to learn language. I moved into New Guinea after I went through the training. First, we learned the national trade language, pidgin. [speaking in pidgin]

The situation became that my goal was to go into one of the 850 language groups that are in New Guinea and be more involved with one of these groups of people. [speaking in pidgin] Then I went to the Aria. [speaking in pidgin] I asked them if I could live with them [speaking in pidgin] because I have a message that I would like to share with them, but I want to do it in their language, their heart language. [speaking in pidgin]

My teammate, John, and I, studied the language [speaking in pidgin]. John developed a literacy program [speaking in pidgin] because we wanted to put the Bible in their language. [speaking in pidgin] We worked for a long time, and it was hard work [speaking in pidgin]. We are so thankful and grateful for God giving us that language and the ability to speak it. [speaking in pidgin]

There is a national trade language Bible. [speaking in pidgin]. They do not have a Bible in their language. [speaking in pidgin] So, we created a linguistics program so that they could see what their language looked like in written form. It was not previously written. [speaking in pidgin] John translated the New Testament in their language, and we went on from there.

Again, we just want to thank the Lord for his grace and mercy to us to be able to be there and serve Him that way. There are a couple of verses that I would like to launch off for today. We did a lot of translation of the Bible. As someone who knew the language, I was able to translate a lot of Bible lessons, expository Bible lessons on the New Testament. But our desire was to see them grounded and do whatever it is to help and ground them.

We are not natural tribal people; we do not know their culture that well. We could enter into their culture to a degree, but it was hard for us to do that. So, most of my lessons were more of a redemptive nature, talking about the blood of Jesus Christ and that He died for them, and they can have salvation in God through Jesus Christ and His work on the cross. Looking forward, we are thinking that I would like to ground them more in what the walk is, in what our life should be as a result of becoming a Christian.

“Much More”

So, looking at these verses here:

Romans 5:9: “Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.”

Romans 5:10: “For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.”

I divide that second verse into two parts. The first part, “For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son,” – I believe that that assures of Heaven one day. God reconciled me, a terrible sinner, a human being with an old nature. He reconciled me to himself through the death of His Son on my behalf. But then there are two words that divide the second half of that verse as I see it. It says, “much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.” The “much more” is what I want to address today.

On the day of Pentecost, a group of believers gathered to wait because they were told to wait, and the Holy Spirit came upon these believers. I believe at that moment, they did not just get the Holy Spirit, they got Jesus Christ. Prior to that time Jesus Christ had walked in the world, His pure life before mankind, the son of Mary through a virgin birth, a spotless life. He went back to Heaven and this “much more” I believe he is saying is that He came back to be in us. It was not just receiving the Holy Spirit; we know God is a trinity.

I believe Jesus Christ is with us in spirit today. I think that is what it says here where it says, “we shall be saved by his life.” – the ongoing work of Jesus Christ today. You might question that or ask what does that mean? Think of Galatians:

Galatians 2:20: “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.”

“Yet not I,” – I am living this life, but I am letting Jesus Christ live it through me. That is a powerful thing. That is a reality that we often do not look at a great deal. It is something that as I dwelt on that more, thought about that more, what is my life? How often do I run on my own common sense even as a Christian, as a Christian for a long time? How often do I run on my common sense, my natural wisdom? And yet the Lord would say, “Wait, Randy, let me show you what to do. I want to lead you in your life.” We need to allow Him to lead in our life, don’t we? We need to allow God to help us make the decisions we make day-by-day. Because when we make them, we generally run off on our own inertia sometimes, don’t we?

I get up in the morning, have my cereal, and I go off and do my job. For the last years, I have been working in a construction role with the homes and we can go on automatic pilot and make decisions. We can correct our kids shooting from the hip. We can say things to our wives or to our husbands, be short with them because we are shooting from the hip. And yet, if we hold back and say, “Lord, this is the situation, I am having problems with my spouse, my child.” We need to be sensitive to who they are because they are a part of you, they are your family. My coworkers, how do I relate to them in a way that will communicate Christ to them? I think that is the idea behind Him sending His Son.

Two Sides

Colossians 1:27: “To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:”

I do not believe that is talking about when we get to Heaven. I believe it is talking about right here. Our hope in Heaven is because we have someone with us to help us, to save us from the bad decisions we make. To save us from jumping ahead and doing the wrong thing. And oftentimes because we are prone to run on our own inertia, we still do it. Later on, we spend a lot of time apologizing to everybody. Sometimes with our children, we do not do that as we ought to, and they carry baggage into their adulthood, and it becomes part of who they are, and they pass that on to their kids.

But, for instance, my own daughters when we were in the tribe, I was very gung-ho to learn the tribal language and write Bible lessons. I would say, “Tracy, you and the girls go out and play, take them to the river, wherever.” Dad was not there at those sensitive times when they were little guys or little ladies in the tribe. Because I was thinking, “Well, I have to keep this tribal language to learn, I have a language to write stuff in.”

My energies were spent doing my religious missionary thing. I do not think I am unique. I suspect it happens quite commonly amongst born-again, fundamental Christians. We can have a religious side to us and be very stiff and yet God is not stiff. He knows those hearts I am talking to, and He knows my heart and how I am talking to them.

I sat under a counselor once and we talked about how men compartmentalize. The women, everything is all meshed together in their personalities. Many compartmentalize and how often, even amongst men and women of the faith, Christians, do we have our Christian half and my-right-to-myself half. Oftentimes, that Christian suffers as a result of these two sides opposing each other. That is why I believe what is behind the idea that God wanted His Son to be with us daily, obviously, it was not a physical presence, but He wants to be allowed to speak through us.

When I back up and am getting ready to throw a zinger verbally or whatever, he wants me to think “Wait, Randy. That does not administer grace to the hearer.” I know I am preaching to the choir. I think you have all seen these things in life. I look at the Aria people and think some of them are very willing to posture their Christianity, but I want them to see the other side of Jesus Christ. He wants to minister to them, He wants to speak through them, He wants to be present in the decisions they make.

He wants to be allowed to have authority over me when I want to claim authority in a situation because He is God, and I am not. He is touching the lives I have contact with for His glory, and how I relate to them is affected by how much of my life I give to Him. It is a matter of just stepping back a lot of times. We get heated and yet that does not minister grace.

I am jumping all over my notes here. I think of something Paul said when he was talking to the carnal Galatians:

Galatians 4:19: “My little children, of whom I travail in birth again until Christ be formed in you,”

Does that mean Christ is going to evolve into a presence in them? No, I think saved by His life, He is there but we do not recognize Him. He could be knocking on the door of my heart, and I am not listening. So, Paul is saying [paraphrasing], “I want to see my Son, I want to see myself, Jesus Christ, in your life.”

When we look at possible rewards in the future, it will be based on what? How much we did, because we, as we say in pidgin English, taitim bun (tighten bone). In other words, you do it strongly, get out there and do your thing, or, based on the amount of time I allowed Christ to help me make my choices. So, it is not a matter of a fact that he is not present with me all the time, with me or you, as I understand it, but that we do not know it or we do not think about it.

And so, it is a reality that formed in us, that He wants to form in us, to have that sensitivity of the man I am supposed to be for my wife, the wife I am supposed to be for my husband, the father I am supposed to be for my kids. These things are profound things to God, and we just think, eh, that is Sunday School stuff. It is not, it is real life. God is looking at how we live this life, to see how much of Him we allow to speak through us.

There are a lot of situations where I know in my own life when you are in the ministry, you are called upon to make decisions, sometimes shoot from the hip. Only to find out, oh, now I have to back up and know how to deal with this. God wants us to be in an ever-deepening awareness of our need to let Him be Him in our lives. His desire is to save me from the futility of attempting to live a Christian life in my own strength. And that is where we are all at, at times. I suspect that we are living the Christian life in our own strength. God has a much more intimate view of who we are and who He wants us to be for His glory as sons and daughters ransomed by His Son.

II Corinthians 4:11: “For we which live are alway delivered unto death for Jesus’ sake, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh.”

Even the most profound difficult circumstances are intended by God to reveal himself to those around us with our lives as we let Him do that. Does that make sense? He wants to reveal Jesus Christ through me, the guy who back at Sanford, I crawled through people attics, plumbing, fixing their toilets, tearing out drywall, putting new pipes in, but I am also a son of God, purchased by Jesus Christ. There is a greater, far greater role that no matter how rudimentary your life may be in your workplace, or how rudimentary your life may be amongst your friends, as a believer, He has a great deal more to say to us to open our hearts to Him.

He does not want me to compartmentalize myself so that I have a Christian side and my own self, the side that likes to play computer games when I could be reading a story to my son, or whatever it is. No, He says, “I want the whole thing, Randy. I do not want this side or that side. I want the whole thing. Then you will account for me.”

Jesus Christ at the Forefront

I think a lot of feminism is born out of men having wounded women because they chose to do their own thing and do it by the seat of their pants in their relationships with their wives. I think our culture, the wealthiest culture in the world with the most amount of light has sinned against more light than any other culture in the history of mankind. It is all for one reason. Jesus Christ was not at the forefront of my mind in whatever area I was impacting those around me. So, things start to disintegrate, things start to fall apart, divorces happen, all other kinds of stuff happen.

This is part of an entry from a guy called Oswald Chambers, who wrote “My Utmost for His Highest.” I am sure a number of you have read this. It is called “Christ Awareness.”

Matthew 11:28: “…and I will give you rest.”

“Whenever anything begins to disintegrate your life with Jesus Christ, turn to Him at once, asking Him to re-establish your rest. Never allow anything to remain in your life that is causing the unrest. Think of every detail of your life that is causing the disintegration as something to fight against, not as something you should allow to remain.”

And that is the problem, we allow these things to remain.

“Ask the Lord to put awareness of Himself in you, and your self-awareness will disappear.”

And that is what He wants, not I, but Christ. That self-awareness; we have presidents voted in because of personality, not because of principle. We have people getting promotions in jobs because they have a personality, not because of credentials.

“Beware of allowing your self-awareness to continue, because slowly but surely it will awaken self-pity, and self-pity is satanic. Don’t allow yourself to say, “Well, they have just misunderstood me, and this is something over which they should be apologizing to me; I’m sure I must have this cleared up with them already.” Learn to leave others alone regarding this. Simply ask the Lord to give you Christ-awareness.”

He will complete in you what is lacking and bring you back into a situation where you are at peace with Him. Think of the world we live in and all the trouble that is going on. Christians do not have a bad rap for a reason amongst unbelievers a lot of the time because we are not allowing Him to be all He wants to be. Just a couple more thoughts here.

Doing the Impossible

You can say, “Well, I can’t change. This is the way it has always been.” Remember when Jesus was walking on the water and Peter saw Him on the water and he said, “Master.” He got out of the boat and went to Jesus. Just as he got out of the boat, He began to look at the waves and the turbulence around him, and he sank. But at least he got out of the boat, no other disciple was getting out of the boat because their common sense was saying, “You get out of the boat, you are dead because this is a storm.” I have been in storms in New Guinea, and it is not pretty when you are in a little boat.

Jesus wants us today to still see Him walking on the water able to meet any need, doing the impossible, not my common sense. He is still walking on the water. He is still capable of doing things, beyond I can ask or think with my life, to regain relationships that I and myself did not do a very good job with. Can I trust Him with the storms of my life? Yeah. Will I get out of the boat in a turbulent situation in somebody else’s life and say, “Here is a hand, let’s go. Let me help you.” That is what Jesus is looking for in us.

Oftentimes people feel, “Well, you can’t see God, so it can’t be true. It can’t be real.” Well, we know who He is and I think of this verse:

Hebrews 11:27: “By faith he [Moses] forsook Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king: for he endured, as seeing him who is invisible.”

We are worshipping an invisible God, but we have a faith that is concrete as we walk with Him. And that is the thing that will make us who we need to be. The Bible says:

Philippians 2:15: “That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world;”

How do I shine as a light in this crooked and perverse nation? He says it is part of our job description, to shine as a light in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation. There is no one in this room who would disagree with me that our world is crooked and perverse. It is by staying close to the lamp.

John 1:4: “In him was life; and the life was the light of men.”

That is where my life is. I just wanted to challenge you with those thoughts. Those are thoughts I think I wanted to share with the audience, Christ in you, the hope of glory, not I.

Galatians 2:20: “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.”

I do not want to be the one running my life and at the end of my life say, “What in the world happened here?”

Watch the prerecorded live version of the entire service and sermon, Missionary Randy Wise: Moving Forward with Christ Today, on Facebook.

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Randy and his wife, Tracy, have been missionaries in New Guinea, for many years. They have ministered to a tribal population and have been involved in creating the New Testament in the native language. The couple is currently stationed in Sanford, Florida.

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