For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths. 2 Timothy 4:3-4
My pastor preached a â€˜brussels sproutâ€™ message this week. It wasnâ€™t â€˜sweetâ€™ and I doubt that many of us would have ordered it from the Sunday menu! It was a message for me. It was a message for everyone who considers him/herself an â€˜adultâ€™ or â€˜matureâ€™ Christian. My pastor may raise an eyebrow about what I heard him say to me. Messages are like that. This message spoke truth to me and gave me something to think about: â€œAuthentic Christianityâ€
If the ax is dull and its edge unsharpened, more strength is needed but skill will bring success. Ecclesiastes 10:10
I donâ€™t want to be a â€˜cheap imitationâ€™ of Jesus. I want to a true representative of Him. And so I need to GROW UP. God gives me so many ways to grow in my relationship with Him.
David said that Godâ€™s word is a â€˜lampâ€™ that lights our paths in life. Do I spend time every day soaking up the light? When I am uncertain do I try to find my way on my own or do I turn to God first?
Still another said, â€œI will follow you, Lord; but first let me go back and say good-by to my family.â€
Jesus replied, â€œNo one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God.â€ Luke 9:61-62
It was interesting that during the message on Sunday morning there was more shuffling of feet, squirming around, whispered conversations, and doors opening and closing than Iâ€™ve ever noticed. Do you think the distractions were a coincidence? No, me neither. Distractions are something that helps the enemy in his game plan. The enemy is a real scum-bag. He will use my husband, my children, my career, — anything he can to get me to look away from the path that God has for me and the service that He may want to use me in. Here again, it is spending time with God every day in study and worship and prayer (conversation) that I keep my focus and choose to keep God as the #1 priority in my life.
Paul reminds me (1 Corinthians 3:13-15) that whatever I do in my life will come through Godâ€™s refinerâ€™s fire on Judgment Day and be shown for whatever it is. My heart, whatever I have done or have not done will be sifted by the One who loves me and sees only truth. I have an opportunity every day to choose God and His way. I have an opportunity every day to choose to listen â€“ to God.
I am thankful that God has given me pastors and teachers who are fear God more than they crave manâ€™s approval. They will remind of the â€˜sweetnessâ€™ of Godâ€™s love â€“ thatâ€™s a â€˜Twinkieâ€™ message. They will also remind me of the discipline of my loving Father. That can be nutritional like a â€˜brussels sproutâ€™ or something that I need to chew for a time, like steak. Let us choose carefully to Whom we will listen.