Does the church make you nuts?!? I was musing over some of the comments and emails I received from my most recent posts. I have discovered that there are a lot of angry and disillusioned Christians out there. It makes me sad to think that the church, the place with the "standard" by which all men will be judged is taught, disregard even the simplest of commands and live selfishly. Here are some Biblical situations, what would you do? (WHAT WOULD I DO? WW I D)
Luke 19:29b He sent two of the disciples, 30 saying, "Go into the village ahead of you; there, as you enter, you will find a colt tied on which no one yet has ever sat; untie it and bring it here. 31 "If anyone asks you, ‘Why are you untying it?’ you shall say, ‘The Lord has need of it."
Let me paraphrase: Go into [your city] and find a brand new Mercedes E500 with the keys in it. Take that, and if the dealer asks you why, say that you need it for Jesus. If you are the dealer/owner, can you hand over the keys?
Luke 10:1 After this the Lord appointed seventy (-two) 2 others whom he sent ahead of him in pairs to every town and place he intended to visit. 2 He said to them, "The harvest is abundant but the laborers are few; so ask the master of the harvest to send out laborers for his harvest. 3 Go on your way; behold, I am sending you like lambs among wolves. 4 Carry no money bag, no sack, no sandals; and greet no one along the way. 5 Into whatever house you enter, first say, 'Peace to this household'."
Let me paraphrase again: Get a buddy and plan a mission to serve someone else besides you and your family (if you have one). Ask, get a vision, and do it. Soup kitchens, VBS, overseas missions, feeding the poor and homeless in your home; there are lots of ways to do it Don't worry about danger there will always be some, don't worry about money, it's all His anyway (spend what you were saving for the big screen TV, your team isn't going to be in the Super Bowl anyway!), and be peaceful and loving to all you meet-- but look for the ones that are ripe.
Luke 10:38 As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him.
Ummm... open you home. Sure this was easy for Martha, it was Jesus. He wasn't going to steal anything or stink up the new couch. Didn't He say, "Whatever you do unto the least of these, you have done unto Me"?
John 5:19 Jesus gave them this answer: "I tell you the truth, the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does.
Let me paraphrase: If it's not God, don't bother. If it is God, you better be listening.
Following Jesus is a tall order. It is hard to make a commitment to serve Him in the ways described in the passages above when we are immature, and in many more cases, too comfortable with pursuing our lifestyle; whatever that is. It could be 2 cars, 2.5 kids and home of our own. It could be something devious, addictive or destructive. If we are living a life that is not prescribed by Him, we will never be fulfilled spiritually.
For those of us that have had years of Christian teaching and can't get there, we can't blame it on God. We can't just go to church and Bible study once a week, be nice to others, and think that is what we are called to do. That sounds more like Wal*Mart, don't you think? How is it that we love our neighbor as our self anyway? The simple answer is we treat them like we treat ourselves. We eat steak, they eat steak. We give them the same quality we give to the great "I." We start to serve them in times of need knowing that our needs will be taken care of, while we get involved with others. I mean, if we are in God's will, then our life is none of our business, now is it?
As we reach out, we need to be sincere, letting our "yes," be yes (a commitment) fulfilling that which we have already said we would do. How about we start with that, and then, at some point, there may be a knock at the door asking to use our car, take in a homeless person, make a meal, or give some cash. Hopefully we'll hand over the keys or open the door, while we praise God that He has chosen us.
Are you committed?