By Michael Tidwell
A few years back, a minister from Africa visited our church. He was astonished, when he saw that we did not have several hundred people attending our church. He had assumed that since we published, The Eagle's View newsletter, that we had a large congregation. I have learned in life, that when God burns a burden into your heart, He will provide the means for it to be accomplished. When God began to deal with Moses, Moses responded with excuses (Exodus 4:10). It is easy to fall into this trap because we are well aware of our weaknesses. But God does not call the equipped, He equips the called. I know of a retired brother and his wife that spend several weeks each year in India. As I write this post, they are crossing through India spreading what God has done in our hour. I am reminded of another brother, who is at this time in Haiti spreading the good news of Christ. I cannot forget another brother, who in the last several years has spent much time traveling overseas to point young people to Jesus. Many evangelists are gone weekend after weekend preaching the true and living Gospel. It is a burden, that propels the pastor to spend their time praying and seeking God's will for their local church. Most of these people are not wealthy. Nor do they have the support of a large congregation or denomination. If you ask them, they will be the first to admit that they do not have much to offer within themselves. Yet, they have something that is greater than wealth, charisma, education, and denominational support combined and that is a willing heart that is driven by a burden given by God.
Why do we see so many people drawn toward charisma, personalities and programs? It is because they have lost sight of the burden. When you are driven by a burden given by God, it does not matter, whether you meet in a barn or a beautiful building. It does not matter, if there are ten people or ten thousand. It does not matter if the minister can barely say his abc's or if he is educated. You are driven by a burden to be where God would want you to be. To walk as God would want you to walk. To talk as God would want you to talk. Brother Branham was driven by a burden and that is why he felt just as comfortable in a house meeting as he did preaching to several hundred thousand in India. He was just as comfortable talking with a theologian as he was to a infidel. He was propelled by a burden to draw men and women to Christ.
What is driving our churches? Is it to see how many people we can herd together? What is driving our personal life? Is it to see how good we can look? What is driving our homes? Is it how much money we can make? I will be the first to admit, like many, it is a struggle to keep our heart true to the same burden that the those in the early church had. Sometimes I catch myself drifting and I must go back to this simple question, "Have I lost sight of the burden?"
God doesn't require an education and a lot of nonsense; He requires a surrendered heart to His will. He doesn't ask you to dress in a certain way, or go to certain things, or out of certain colleges, or degrees. He asks for a humble, contrite, broken spirit, and a willing heart to receive Him. – Brother William Branham
Let me have this handful of people in here tonight, fully considered the Christ, and their life dedicated to Christ. I can do more with this handful, or God can do more, rather, with this handful of people here, than you could do with the whole World Council of Churches, towards the Kingdom of God. One man surrendered into His hands fully, that's all God needs. – Brother William Branham
Michael and his wife Crista, are blessed to have three beautiful children (Noah, Gracie, Luke). They live in the middle TN area and attend Eagle Christian church. He counts it a honor to be involved with Eagle’s View, BYC and serving as a evangelist. They enjoy being outdoors, traveling and above all serving the Lord.