Jesus didn't die to keep us safe. He died to make us dangerous!
Over the last couple of weeks, and most probably months, the Lord has been nudging me, gently touching his finger on my heart pointing out something that was grieving him ... about me. I was believing a lie about myself and how I perceived an aspect of his heart towards me. I have come to understand that our words and actions flow out of what we believe. A silly example: if I believe that tomorrow's temperatures will be in the high 90s, I will dress accordingly, make sure there's plenty of cold water and ice available and will slather myself with sunscreen and plan a trip to Lake Michigan. Well, who or what we believe about God, and therefore also about ourselves, and others will determine the choices we make in life... and the life we live.
Many of my thoughts and actions were about myself! "What about me? How will this affect me? What will this cost me? When is it my turn? My wants, my way, in my time, at my convenience...".
The lie? God is not quite enough... ouch!
The truth? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all- how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? Romans 8:31b-32
And do you know what is so precious about the way Holy Spirit did this? He convicts with the richness of his kindness, tolerance and patience....God's kindness is what leads us towards repentance. Galations 2:4
God has unrelentingly been kind to me.
Rory and I enjoy reading books together and we started our new one today. All In by Mark Batterson.
The heading of the first chapter? Pack your coffin.
This is the first page, I'd like to share it with you:
"A century ago, a band of brave souls became known as one-way missionaries. They purchased single tickets to the mission field without the return half. And instead of suitcases, they packed their few earthly belongings into coffins. As they sailed out of port, they waved goodbye to everyone they loved, everything they knew. They knew they'd never return home.
A.W. Milne was one of those missionaries. He set sail for the New Hebrides in the South Pacific, knowing full well that the headhunters who lived there had martyred every missionary before him. Milne did not fear for his life, because he had already died to himself. His coffin was packed. For thirty-five years he lived among that tribe and loved them. When he died, tribe members buried him in the middle of their village and inscribed this epitaph on his tombstone:
When he came there was no light.
When he left there was no darkness.
When did we start believing that God wants to send us to safe places to do easy things? That faithfulness is holding the fort? That playing it safe is safe? That there is any greater privilege than sacrifice? That radical is anything but normal?"
What did that do to your heart...?
Thank you Mark for your opening explosive words. I needed that!
I have been crucified with Christ, and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me.
The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God,
who loved me and gave himself for me.""
Until next time.....