Wednesday, September 29, 2010

I'm taller than you!

It seems lately that He is really working on my humility. So often in culture it's all about being the greatest; knowing the most; having the greatest faith ... this is not a new issue.

"But they kept silent, for on the way they had argued with one another about who was the greatest." (Mark 9:34 ESV)

What is even more sad is that I think this issue becomes most heated with our own brothers and sisters. We can spend so much time arguing about translations, laws, interpretations, or views that aren't focused around leading others to Christ. Study them, great, we should, but the Great Commission wasn't asking us to limit our Christian life to church and Bible studies.

Question. Do you imagine yourself having a faith of equal standing with Peter? Not the amount of missions he went on, or the number of people that he brought to Christ, or the conviction of his speeches, but his faith. He is just a man, but like Paul, another wonderful example to us of someone who learned to let Christ shine through. I think in some ways, through Peter's struggles, we can relate, but we miss the point that his faith is our faith. He was/is no closer to God than you and I (as some of my RC friends gasp). He had a purpose, a job, a commission; but so do we. Theological differences aside, just think about this verse:

"Simeon Peter, a servant and apostle of Jesus Christ, To those who have obtained a faith of equal standing with ours by the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ" (2 Peter 1:1 ESV)

If you accept what Peter lays out here with Jesus Christ, you and I stand hand in hand following the one true King. Some of us may mentor, some of us may teach, some of us may need someone to pour into us, but our faith is the same. That is why I am no more saved today than I was years ago when I accepted Christ, regardless of how much deeper in love I feel.

You know what this picture reminds me of now? Not just my adorable son trying to be taller and perform a balancing act! It's a reminder to me that no matter where we are on our walk, Christ fills in the gap (places that log) to make sure that we're all on the same level.

Walking with other believers eye to eye ...

Continue to remind me of that Lord ...


Thursday, September 16, 2010

Baby Steps

A friend of mine was telling me about an experience he had at a UofM football game. He was sitting a row behind the family section and was able to see another part of the game that is often missed and forgotten; the fact that these young players are just kids, sons, and siblings.

He watched as a senior took the field and the excitement of the family peaked; you see, he's been with the team all 4 years, but this was the first time he got to get on the field for a play. He, along with many others, may dress for games, be a part of the team, but rarely get a chance to step on the field and make a play.

This got me thinking about my relationship with Christ. As I spent some time in 1 Peter it's quickly obvious that Jesus isn't asking for baby steps:
but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, since it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.” (1 Peter 1:15-16 ESV)
If we've accepted Christ the way that we are taught in the Word, we are definitely part of His team; salvation is ours. However the joy that is experienced, both by us and those that love us and watch us, is maximized when we step on that field. Why do we (I) hold back so much? What are we afraid of?
for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control. (2 Timothy 1:7 ESV)
The best part is, unlike the player I talked about above, our participation in the game is not limited to our talent, but simply our willingness to step on the field.

Father, give me the courage to give all of myself to you; not just when convenient. May I stop taking baby steps, and run all out towards you. Help me leave my junk behind that is slowing me down, and continue to remind me that my past doesn't matter, my failures are forgiven, and I'm Yours now. Yet I pray that I don't ever run alone; that along the way I grab the hands of those that are reaching out, yet too weak to stand. May I also grab the hands of those that may not even want to run with me and call me a fool ... they'll see ... they will. Amen.

Going long ... and I pray not alone.
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