Sunday, August 06, 2017


The Kingdom of God isn't handy.  Neither is it comprised of moody do-gooders when opportunities of service are convenient.  No, life in the synchronization of the Master is an all-in matter which will chase the most of us all the way to our graves.  Yet, we will continue to try for our hearts deeply desire to bring Him honor and mankind hope.

My good colleague Jason Thornton preached this morning about our commitment being all in.  The challenge is nothing new.  Yet, due to our bent on playing life safe (and church safer), his words rang new yet again.  There's something about God's declaration that His followers are made new day by day.  This is one of the funnest things ever that, even as we age, we find ourselves feeling newer than the calendar confirms.  This is His promise when we follow Him; new day by day.

That commitment Jason proposed is a struggle for many; if not all.  Here may be one reason why.  We like to put puzzles together; but we basically stop once all of the edge pieces are connected.  The inner pieces are more difficult to place.

So it is in the church life.  Putting the edge parts of church life together are simple to the point the basic masses may engage.  Attending is fundamental as is taking communion, singing, and listening to another pray...briefly.  But those inner pieces of the kingdom puzzle come with delicate requirement of sober attention coupled with intended application.

The Inner Puzzle finds the need to pray...often...with depth...of faith.  The IP calls for sobering giving of what we would naturally rather keep for ourselves.  Too, IP insists that we love others...all kinds of others...from those whom we love dearly to those we would rather enjoy detesting.

Because of the Inner Puzzle reality, the kingdom life isn't for sissies.  Placing the edges of church participation together without concentration upon learning just exactly how the inner pieces also fit will always leave one stranded without ever seeing the complete picture.

There...that's why the Inner Puzzle of the church is important.  The world can't see the value of the church if we only live from the edges of easy assembly.  Furthermore, we will never offer the world a picture of understanding the spiritual life if we refuse to be connected together.  Once harmony in the Holy Spirit is connected, our neighbors will begin to see the picture of God's glory.

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