15 Aug 2013 by Donna Uning CM-
“If the King of the universe calls you, you’d feel so honored, you’d run to Him!” exclaimed Ps Petra Zulkarnain Sharief recently at the Kuching Park Hotel, Kuching. Ps Zulkarnain, from Indonesia, reminded the church about the Word of God given to him about Sarawak when he was here a few months ago.
“There are those who sow, those who water and those who harvest; but it’s God that gives growth,” he said.
“So my dear brothers and sisters, stand strong. Do not let anything move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your work in the Lord is never wasted.”
1 Corinthians 15: 58
Ps Zulkarnain spoke of the highest calling in his message about reaching the heavenly call of God.
“And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.”
2 Corinthians 9:8
“Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”
How do we get there? Many people think they don’t qualify, they have too much burden. “Many young people think this way,” he said, having counseled many young people with his wife during his ministry. “There are many types of people that God used in the bible,” he said, like Paul. “The righteous will get up because they look forward.” Because of our service, the old is past and we have been made new.
He told a story about a man selling fruits; who carries the baskets on his shoulders. One day, the man decided to use a car to sell the fruits because the baskets were too heavy for him. However, he kept suffering the pain on his shoulders. What he did not realize was that although he was driving the car, the baskets were still on his shoulders. That’s what happens when we still live in the past, he told.
“We are redeemed! It is finished. Jesus said it is finished!” he said. He also recognized that older folks always bring up the old issues whenever there’s a problem. “Our sins are nailed to the cross. Don’t remember the past issues,” he said.
“All who are called by God will be used by God,” he said, reminding the people about Sarawak’s jubilee, 50 years this year. “Forget what’s behind; press on toward the goal to win the prize. This also includes revival,” he said.
To win the prize, you need to move. You need faith. Without faith, you will not reach the maximum potential because you move from the impossible. With God, the impossible becomes possible; all you need is to believe, he said.
Do you believe five loaves and two fish can feed 5000? You believe because the bible says so, not from a personal encounter.
“Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.”
A long time ago, having 15 kids were normal. In Indonesia today, two kids are enough, he explained. Imagine 5000 full grown men plus the women and children and they all ate until they were satisfied. There are leftovers, 12 basketfuls! “There will be leftovers when you do God’s work. Don’t be afraid to sacrifice for God,” he said.
Philippians 3:14 talks of a prize and running heavenward to the call. “In my church, some may need to be pushed or encouraged to run, but we are all God’s children,” he said telling how time has quickened. In Jakarta twenty years ago, the freeway goes on two levels, now it’s six. You would be driving for miles if you go the wrong way. In 1990, only the rich carry those large and heavy mobile phones. You’d be embarrassed to carry one of those today, he told.
“Time is quickening, don’t stand still,” he said. “Don’t be proud because you’ve repented, and don’t be proud because you are saved. The first will be the last and the last will be the first.”
“Think like God, walk like God. Human has limitations, but God is limitless,” he said adding that we need to spend time with God to keep us on fire.
“He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.”
He observed that many of the young people are ‘image conscious’ when it comes to praising and singing. The older folks here are so much more courageous, he said unlike in Indonesia where the opposite happens. “David praises God and did not care what people think,” he reminded. Ps Zulkarnain then continued by singing in Hebrew Psalms 33, “How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity! It is like precious oil poured on the head, running down on the beard, running down on Aaron’s beard, down on the collar of his robe. It is as if the dew of Hermon were falling on Mount Zion. For there the Lord bestows his blessing, even life forevermore.”
“Follow God’s command. All will be added to you, abundantly and exceedingly. God does not change. He heals you then, and He heals you today,” he said. There are three times that God raised the dead in the bible.
“Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father.”
Ps Petra Zulkarnain Sharief was speaking at a gathering attended by Christians from all denomination. The talk was conducted in Bahasa Indonesia and organized by Sarawak Total Revival Ministry or STORM.