By Robert Ricciardelli
From time to time, we have all wondered what if? There are many what ifs in many situations in life. What ifs can be good, especially looking at the way things are and also what if we changed them or adjusted them for the better. We only know in part, so it is always good to check what we think we know often. Here are my What Ifs as we move into 2005.
Please remember that these are only what ifs, purposed to shake up paradigms, firm some up and dismantle others. My prayers are to continually stimulate a possibility thought process on those things that are non-essentials and absolutes…
What if pastors and leadership teams around the world would train and release every member of their church into the ministry that the Lord has called them to in, around, and especially beyond the four walls?
What if pastors would seek to train and support the vision God has for each of their members rather than have the members fulfill the pastor's personal vision for the church?
What if the pastors vision could truly come to fruition because each member would realize their purpose and calling and be released to fulfill it beyond the four walls?
What if every Mega church sought in relationship the other pastors of the community not to fulfill the Mega vision but to truly see transformation take place in all of the churches and jurisdictions of the city?
What if the true 5-fold ministry was unleashed upon every church and that every gift and every leader would be fulfilling their roles as a servant rather than seeking to be served?
What if we realized the Lord owned everything we have and asked us to steward everything, and that we would ask Him how much to give and to where, always willing to give 100% if He were to ask of us?
What if all the children of God understood and operated in the full authority that Jesus Christ sacrificed for us to have?
What if we would accept others and the blessing they are, rather than be offended by them in their differences?
What if more souls for the kingdom and the releasing of every saint into ministry far outweighed any focus on mammon?
What if we all were willing to serve in every phase of our lives rather than being served?
What would happen if every believer realized the lifetime process we are in and could walk beside those not as far along in the process?
What if what we thought was reality was revealed as not, so as to get us to living a life that is filled with reality and purpose for the kingdom?
What if we really knew we could choose to not be offended when offenses came, or at least choose to let go of all offenses immediately?
What if we chose to forgive in every situation and not only because the Father said He would not forgive us unless we did, but because it was in our hearts to love in that way?
What if we really were blinded to culture, creed and credentials as the family of God? And what it if we were excited about the uniqueness of each difference, and the value of each expression of God's people?
What if spiritual Fathers would be motivated with a heart of giving to their spiritual sons that far outweighed any thoughts of what they would receive in return?
What if we had abundantly more Shepherds, (pastors), willing to run after the few of the flock that have been hurt, isolated and in need of life giving expressions of our Saviors love?
What would happen if God's people really prayed and communicated intimately with the Father on a daily basis?
What if we had every Christian home open and available for the faith community every week? And how about daily?
What if every believer was more concerned about being Father's change agents for people, families and communities rather than when we check out in the soon coming rapture?
What if the rapture were a long ways off, or to not to come at all, would we still be about our Father's business in establishing His kingdom upon the earth?
What if we really did not fear dying for Him and in fact chose to die to self daily in order to truly live in and through Him?
What if we lived and moved and had our being in the Holy Spirit 24 hours a day and 7 days a week?
What if every word or deed was received with the Father's heart and mind and every response that came forth from us in word and deed was likewise from the heart of the Father?
What if we would rather have a towel (servant), than a title in leadership?
What if we realized that we must seek to trash every idol in our life to really be free to serve in the army of our Lord?
What if we realized that the greatest idol that you and I have is "self" and we must remove him as often and completely as possible?
What if we realized that removing self only happens as we die to self and live in Him as we seek Him and His will alone?
What if every believer realized that their obedience to what the Father has called them to do was ministry unto Him and His kingdom?
What if every housewife and mother understood that she was in full time ministry in her role?
What if every businessman or blue-collar worker realized that in Christ, they were full time ministers in their calling?
What if there was no difference in the perceived spirituality of a nuclear or ecclesiastic pastor and one who pastored their home and business, keeping in mind the godly order of things?
What if we actually believe God speaks in relevance for today beyond the written word in alignment of the written word?
What if we actually could actually hear a relevant word for today that was in line with the heart and written word of God?
What if there was greater prophetic accountability and disclosure that we are still learning to hear and pronounce prophetically?
What if in accountability and freedom to express what we hear, that we may include a disclosure with something like this; the date, time or event may not ever happen as we only get 3 out of 10 of these right, as we are learning to hear our Fathers voice?
What if we worshipped the foundation of the order, (Christ), beyond the order or perceived order of things?
What if the living Word, (Christ Himself) replaced any dead theoretical, theological, Christological religion?
What if we came and really had fellowship or a connection with somebody on a Sunday, rather than not knowing those around us and once again leaving empty relationally on the drive home?
What if we loved as He loved?
What if we spoke as He spoke?
What if we did what He did?
What if my opinions were okay, because they were my opinions and people would love me even if my opinions were different from theirs?
What if people were commanded to love me and would love me out of obedience, even if they did not feel, "the love"?
What if even one of these "what ifs" were to fan the flame in just a few to go out and make a bigger kingdom difference?