Saturday, August 20, 2016

HAPPY NEW LIFE!

I've been thinking about you.  No.  Really.  I sit at this computer and wonder how your heart is, what might bug you, or what could be said that would give you that just right boost for your day.  And, I think I'm about to nail it for some!

There is the slightest of comment in Paul's discussion of First Thessalonians 3:8 where the words are expressed, for now we really live....  This phrasing changed my entire world some three decades ago.  I was in the church; but I wasn't really living.

I was a tough believer.  I was proud of my doctrinal stubbornness.  I was pushing hard to do right for God; but I wasn't really alive.  The rigidity of church law had done just what Jesus said it would do.  It killed...my drive...my life.  Upbeat?  No, moody.  Full of faith?  No, full of criticism.  Confident?  What would that be?  I was deep into church at its deadliest form; earning my salvation and desperately pleading with God to back me.

I was as a mere robot doing church things....and quite outspoken about my devotion, I might add.  But to say that I was really living?  Nope.  I was marking off my church checklist of Done Good or Did Bad.  Really living...had never occurred to me.

Let me reemphasize.....really living had never occurred to me; the man who stood in front of hundreds each Sunday and thousands at special events.  Is this not precisely what Jesus warned?  The Law will kill; but the Spirit will give life?

So transition was demanded.  The how is still in progress.  I had to first park my high-horse and dismount.  My self-assumption of knowing more than others and knowing what I knew better than others took a significant hit.  I had become an ego-driven, pulpit-pounding, sinner-judging, law-keeping dead man while I walked.  I knew not the Spirit of God; and furthermore, verbally mocked those who thought they did.

Yes.  Me.  The Bible carrying self-righteous one.

So I hit a point where I had to make a new resolution sorta like HAPPY NEW YEARS! Mine, however, was HAPPY NEW LIFE!  As weird or as odd as it sounds, it took great focus (and continues to require attention) to transition from being right to being of the joy of God.  Being of His joy IS being right.

For you and me, one of our simplest calls to inspiring the entire world toward God would to be to become a community of believers who are the happiest people our neighbors and colleagues ever met in their lives.  These good people are not wanting to know if we go to church.  What they really want to know is whether our going to church has done us any good.

And together we say.........It.  Has.  And.  Does.  And.  Will.  Continue.  To.  So.

HAPPY NEW LIFE!


1 comment:

Kent Linda said...

In the face of death I will confirm and affirm that Jesus' reign will have no end. And I will daily anticipate and seek the resurrection of all believers and the return of Jesus!