you can learn a lot from a hermit crab.

My sister got an email today and I asked her to forward it to me so I could share it here.  Unfortunately, the two hermit crabs pictured above are no longer with us.  Kermit (rainbow shell) died before we left Minnesota, and Santa (red butterfly shell) froze the first night of our travels because we forgot to bring her in to our hotel. 

Good lesson here though.

-Personal Word of Challenge - Are You Satisfied In Ministry?

Over the past years, I have determined to constantly be on the lookout for the Lord's leading, direction, and word even in the most unusual situations. During our business meeting, God specifically challenged me with a word that He impressed on my heart was for you.

We often find ourselves in places or situations in which we believe that we could be doing something better or more constructive with our time. I know that in the busyness of my daily schedule, every moment counts. Well, this past Sunday evening was our church's annual business meeting. Though necessary and extremely important to the operation of the body, it does often lack a certain appeal for most. Some might find themselves echoing Nathanael's words from John 1:46 where he asked, "Nazareth! Can anything good come from there?" Some might say, "A business meeting! Can anything good come from there?" Well, check this out.

Upon opening the meeting, Pastor John shared this illustration. "The hermit crab, in order to live, must continue to change its shell. However, as it makes the move to change its shell, he becomes exposed. He risks being eaten. As he gets older, he begins to enjoy the safety and comfort of this last shell so he does not make the change to a new shell. And the shell that keeps him comfortable is the very thing that kills him because his body has been squeezed to death."

Be challenged to Never Become Satisfied! Never become satisfied with your understanding of the scripture. Never become satisfied with the level of relationship you have with your Heavenly Father. Never become satisfied with the level of spiritual growth you see in the lives of those to whom you are ministering. It's okay to want more! You read that correctly. In this case, God wants you to want more! And, God wants to give you more!

Isaiah 54:2-3 says, "Enlarge the place of your tent, stretch your tent curtains wide, do not hold back; lengthen your cords, strengthen your stakes for you will spread out to the right and to the left."

I'm sure you have heard the adage "Us Four and No More." Sometimes we become so satisfied with where we are, what we are doing, and how we are doing it that we never realize we have developed the hermit-crab mentality of safety which eventually will lead us to our own demise.

Seek God this week for ways that you can enlarge your tent. Do not hold back. With ALL of your heart, soul, mind, and strength, do ALL for the glory of God. Place all you do into His hands and He will cause your plans to succeed! (Mark 12:30, 1 Corinthians 10:31, Proverbs 16:3)

Pastor Gary R. Linn

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