I was driving down one of our highways and came to a long curve in the road. On the left side, there was a series of those temporary orange signs. They had something written on them, and there were probably six or eight of them lined up so many yards apart, all of them apparently saying the same thing. From where I was watching as I was going around the curve, it looked like it said on these signs: Movers Ahead. I thought to myself, “What kind of movers are up here? Are they moving trees? Are they moving machinery? Are they moving dirt? What kind of movers are up here?” When I got around the curve and had gone a quarter or a half a mile, I saw the movers were not movers but mowers cutting the grass along the highway.
Until I got to the mowers and realized what I had misread, I was thinking about how needful it is in the Christian life to have movers. Movers to take things out. Movers to bring things in. Movers to move on. At times it is important for a church to pause long enough to take evaluation of things that need to be moved. The great prophet Jeremiah said the Lord called him to his ministry: “See, I have this day set thee over the nations and over the kingdoms, to root out, and to pull down, and to destroy, and to throw down, to build, and to plant” (Jeremiah 1:10). In other words, Jeremiah had been called of God to be one of those Movers Ahead.
It is a fact that the people of God at times need to move things out. Like it or not and even not recognizing it, there are things that become a part of our daily activities and our church life that may seriously need to be moved out. They don’t have any place among the people of God and in the work of God. Jeremiah needs to come and take hold of some of us. He needs to take hold of some of those things and root them out and pull them up and destroy and throw them down.
What kind of things? They are numerous, but consider these. Wrong relationships need to be thrown out. Bad attitudes need to be rooted out and done away with. Mean motives that people have that need to be gotten rid of. A resistant spirit that doesn’t want to see change, or does not want to listen to God, needs to be dealt with. Jeremiah’s call to minstry was a very difficult undertaking for him, but it was true that God had called him and he was on a mission to see that the people of God had a lot of these and other things rooted out from among them.
Jeremiah’s ministry didn’t stop there, nor should the Movers Ahead stop because it’s not just things taken out but things brought in. For Jeremiah, he said God called him to build and to plant. There are things that need to be brought into our lives that maybe once were there and are now gone and need to be reestablished. What kind of things? Things like a daily, purposeful communication with God — prayer. Not just a flippant, quick prayer as you head out the door and down the road, but a meeting with God about the essentials of life needs to be brought into every one of our lives and anchored as a part of our everyday existence.
A trust relationship with our wonderful Lord needs to be anchored in us. An obedient heart willing to do whatever God wants us to do, say whatever He wants us to say, love who He wants us to love, forgive who we need to forgive. It needs to be brought into our lives, built up, planted to grow. Then if there were Movers Ahead in our churches to take things out, to put things in, and then to move on to what God wants us to do. To move on to touch people for Christ who need Jesus desperately. To not live in a selfish, self-centered world but to see a world that is without Christ about whom we have been given the Good News to share with them. To move on beyond ourselves to a world that can be touched for Him. To move on in the unfolding will of God for our lives that bring great joy and impact, not only on earth but in heaven.
God’s will is dramatically, dynamically at work in His people. It might be good that we would put some signs all around our churches as we assemble to worship God and join as the people of God to serve Him. Some signs that say Movers Ahead. Movers in the call and lifestyle of Jeremiah to move a lot of things out and move a lot of things in and to move on triumphantly to do what the Lord has called us to do and to be the people that God wants us to be. God help us to not only put up signs but to find movers.
The author can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.