The Lord asks for more…
Ezekiel 33:30 “Come hear the message that has come from the Lord.” ‘My people come to you and sit and listen to your words, but they do not put them into practice. Indeed, you are nothing more than one who sings love songs with a beautiful voice, for they hear your words, but do not put them into practice.’”
Ouch how often have we listened to sermons and or read the scriptures, and heard what God wants from our lives, whether it is forgiving someone, or taking the money pledge seriously or letting our schedules be inconvenienced for spiritual growth, but fail to implement His calling?
Back in 1772 Archibald Alexander who would one day be the founder of Princeton Seminary, while yet a young man, was still on the fence about committing his life to Jesus Christ. An elderly woman took him under her wing and made the observation that “Presbyterians are sound in doctrine, but often lack the experience of spiritual rebirth.” Hmm, I fear that mainline denominational Christians have tamed the revolutionary call of Christ and harnessed the power of the Holy Spirit so that our faith has drifted into what Paul warns in 2 Timothy as: “Holding to a form of godliness that has lost its power.”
The Lord has so much He wants to impart into our life, not merely a theological theory about eternity, but a spiritual power that impacts and tangibly influences our everyday experiences in this world. To unlock the power of Christianity we must be willing to abandon ourselves to however, whenever, whatever God might call us to do.
For instance, Dr. Carlson was a physician who heard there was a need for short term missionaries in Africa. So he signed up for duty in the Congo. While there the Communist rebels seized control of the country. At a moment when the Missionaries and their disciples were in danger, Dr. Carlson led a communion service and told the gathered Christians, “We do not know what will happen, we might have to suffer and die because we are Christians. But it doesn’t matter our job is to follow Jesus.” Dr. Carlson ended up giving his life so the others would be saved…which made Jesus’ words come alive, “Greater love has no man than to lay down one’s life for his friends.” A life with eternal significance sound so much more meaningful than playing it safe and keeping God as a personal theory. Let’s take the “God challenge” and live empowered, meaningful lives!
–By Rev. Dr. William Lewis