Puppets or Pioneers?
By Overseer Christopher J. Harris
This week’s topic: The Power Of The Spirit
Even when I was a child, I was never a fan of puppets. As I have thoughts about this, I am not sure that I can pinpoint one exact reason that stands out in my mind that would explain this. I will say that I could always see the strings. You could always tell that the puppet’s moves were not his own, which for me was a challenge because that meant that he didn’t have his own mind. His movements were not independent of the strings. Maybe I didn’t have enough imagination in this particular area, but it always bugged me that these puppets one day wouldn’t revolt and just cut the strings. Didn’t they know the power that they possessed? Wait…they aren’t human beings are they? Right!
So, why do so many real-life human beings think that God has made us puppets? They seem to think that God simply has tied strings to our every moment and that we are devoid of choice (or free will) or any independent movements. The assumption for many is that we have no power to live or for living.
Maybe the challenge in this thinking is that for some it is hard to get beyond the reality that we’ve been given an amazing amount of power! Literally, God’s Word shares in Acts 1: 8, “after that the Holy Spirit has come upon you, you shall receive power…”
Puppets have no power! But pioneers do! We’re called not to be puppets on a string, being controlled by something else, but pioneers who have enough power, innovativeness, creativity, and insight that they chart new courses, live by amazingly high standards, view life in such an extraordinary way, and operate in such a supernatural way that it is literally ‘strange’ to those who are not pioneers. By definition, a pioneer is one who does something first, explores new territories, and is an initiator. This is the total opposite of being a puppet.
Have you ever really wondered why God would give us this power? The verse actually answers the question. The remaining portion of the verse says, “…so that you can be my witnesses…” When you consider the frailty of our humanness and yet the amazing results that we can obtain through God’s power, the only explanation that we can offer forces us to become “God’s Witnesses”. When people become great and accomplish great things the question always comes up, “How did they do that?” For the believer, who is submitted to God’s Spirit and thus His power, the question can only be answered by pointing back to God’s power. We become his witnesses. Beyond that, the great results have become seen only as miracles, not the routine. So we resolve to life in average environments with run-of-the-mill, lifeless activity. If we are going to live by the Spirit, we are challenged to be pioneers, not puppets.
Puppets go along and settle for lifeless activity. Pioneers are the total opposite. Pioneers are frustrated with people who have potential and never tap into it. Pioneers are frustrated with themselves when they are in an ordinary environment with ordinary activity. Pioneers look and live on the extra-ordinary. Pioneers are filled with the power that literally comes from the creator God himself. Pioneers are challenged every day to exceed expectations, even their own.
It is always easy to settle and simply exist. But there’s more power that each believer possesses than to simply accept things as they are. Today, be challenged to be a pioneer, not just a puppet. They aren’t real anyway.
Scripture of the Day: “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” – Acts 1:8
Christopher J. Harris, a native of Palatka, FL, is Chief of Staff/Director of Church Operations of the historic mega-church Fellowship Church of Chicago. He is also Overseer of Youth for Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship International. Harris…