Many times, we are so anxious to serve that we may fall into the trap of inviting ourselves to take a place not designated for us. The timing of the Lord is perfect! When we strive for name placement, platforms, and invitations, we are, in effect, trying to make room for our gift instead of letting our gift make room for us. When the Lord opens a door, no man can shut it!
This is not to say that we do not put forth effort to be excellent. There is nothing wrong with being prepared when a door opens. Websites, business cards, social networking pages, and up-to-date contact information are helpful when people want to contact us for an invite. Studying the Word and taking classes will pay off at the appointed time. While the networking world may urge us to hook up with as many "friends" as possible and promote our ministries like a marketing firm, many of these practices do not line up with Scripture. We must allow ourselves to be led of the Lord.
I can only testify to what the Lord has done for me. It is somewhat disturbing to receive dance ministry resumes, unsolicited requests to teach or minister, or see message boards and social networking sites flooded with "BOOK ME" "INVITE ME" "CONTACT ME" messages from ministries. Let me encourage someone by saying that I am amazed at the doors God has opened for me and His way of promotion. I have chosen not to pay for a platform to "minister" at conventions or special events. The Lord has not instructed me to search for every potential connection in cyberspace to let them know that I am available for ministry. I do not maintain connections with people on the basis of what they can do for me. I am constantly examining my own motives to make sure that I am not looking at new dance ministry contacts as potential conference invitations. So far, the Lord is doing a fantastic job!
This is not in reference to missions work or evangelism. I am addressing the platform mentality that so many seek: Comfortable accommodations, luxury travel, pictures on brochures and advertisements, name recognition, large honorariums, reserved seating, keynote distinctions... shall I continue? When the Lord allows us to be requested and celebrated by His doing, we are more likely to honor Him. If we feel as though our labor entitles us to reap these benefits, we honor and glorify ourselves.
I am writing this to encourage those who labor for the Kingdom that we do not have to force our way into any door. When we are faithful to His work, He will amaze us with His perfect plan. I have said it before, but it bears repeating: "The door that you open, you will have to keep open through your own efforts. The doors that the Lord opens requires no added assistance on our part." Let God do it!
New King James Version
"This is the LORD's doing; it is marvellous in our eyes."
"So the last will be first, and the first last. For many are called, but few chosen."
"For I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge. For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and seeking to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted to the righteousness of God."
"Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself."