I’m starting to stink at these, aren’t I? It appears that Evan moves away and I lose all will to blog. Truth is, I have many things to write, but either (1) don’t make the time, (2) think they may stink, or (3) end up eating a bowl of cereal. Also, meetings. Lots of meetings.
Have you ever realized that your life is filled up with way more junk than you thought? I have. Even straightening up my house in the evening is anxiety-inducing. I usually just end up eating a bowl of cereal and thinking about that day when my kids move out of the house so that it will be a little cleaner.
The Colossians, like all of us if we are not careful, began adding to their faith in ways that could, in the short-term, harm it and, in the long-term, undermine it. Habits, behaviors, beliefs, and activities crept in just like that fourth toy school bus amongst the collection. The school bus, however, doesn’t condemn me. The false belief might.
Talking with someone after our service, we spoke on the inevitability of us making idols of certain things: church schedules, certain attire, certain spiritual gifts, songs, and preaching styles, to name a few. Inevitable is, of course, the wrong word. They are not inevitable if we stay close to our savior–we are just prone to wander.
Back in my high school days, I worked at an ice cream shop. (I also gained about 25 pounds during that time, but perhaps those two things are not related?) I remember often having conversations with friends and patrons who came in, sometimes about faith. (I even think Joel Osteen came in one time. He tipped well.) One conversation caught me by surprise, and it is one of the few that I remember:
Patron: Are you born again?
Me: Ummm. . .I’m a Christian?
Patron: But are you born again?
Me: I . . . guess?
I can understand the language. It comes from John 3:5, where Jesus and Nicodemus have a conversation by moonlight; but this person seemed to be using it differently–using it in a way that meant something other than what I understood from John 3. Like there was this better–or higher–kind of Christianity that I wasn’t quite attaining.
At The Chapel, we certainly have our own things that aren’t gospel truth, but we would be remiss if we didn’t admit they sometimes rival it. Our remedy? Begin as we started.
Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him, rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving. –Colossians 2:6-7
Anything other than continuing our faith by walking in the grace we have received and the work Christ has done on our behalf is some form of un-grace (as Philip Yancey would put it).
Our only hope always has and always will be our glorious Savior.