Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Some Lukewarm Thoughts...

For Father's Day the kids and I bought Big Daddy a couple of great books...The Hole in Our Gospel and Crazy Love. Big Daddy began with The Hole in Our Gospel and I have been reading Crazy Love. I am digging the book.

Here are few things (abbreviated excerpts from the book Crazy Love) have me thinking hard about our lives, here in the Harris home:

Yet we keep questioning Him: "Why are so many people dying of starvation?" "Why is my family so messed up?" "Why don't You make Yourself more obvious to the people who need You?"
The answer to each of these questions is simply this: because He's God. He has more of a right to ask us why so many people are starving. As much as we want God to explain himself to us, His creation, we are in no place to demand that He give account to us.

As Tim Kizziar said, "Our greatest fear as individuals and as a church should not be of failure but of succeeding at things in life that don't really matter."

Francis Chan says, "I believe that much of the American churchgoing population, while not specifically swimming downstream, is slowly floating away from Christ. It isn't a conscious choice, but it is nonetheless happening because little in their lives propels them toward Christ."

So, that is where I am at...deep thoughts, inward thoughts, uncomfortable thoughts. Of, what if any difference are we really making outside the walls of our home. We are to be the hands and feet of Jesus...but right now...I am feeling as if we are not nearly productive enough for the kingdom. We are still part of the body but we would be more of a novelty...say hair...something that a body would function just fine without but to the world, oh to the world - hair is important. Shame on us!

Why are we not serving among God's people who have hearts for the widows and orphans? Who back up their words with their actions? Whose benevolence fund far out weighs their building fund? Boards, committees, politics...slowing the wheels of the church. What is holding us back? Why have we become so content in our place in this world as just being a mother, father, volunteer church worker, etc.? Why can we not be more, do more, live life to the fullest...making a bigger difference in lives of the less fortunate, the homeless, the uneasy to love? I will tell you why. Because we have bought the lie, we have swallowed what the world has to offer, we have been deceived, all while really loving the Lord. Living, being complacent right where we are at. Sure we have a relationship with the Lord, but is it deep enough, close enough that we answer the call to follow Him - always - even when we don't feel like it, or at all cost? We tithe, we attend church regularly. We even serve inside the church. But, isn't that what most people do? They love those who love them?

Jesus asks for everything. But we try to give Him less. Jesus said,

Salt is good, but if it loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is fit neither for the soil nor the manure pile; it is thrown out. Luke 14:34-35

Jesus isn't just making a cute little analogy here. He is addressing those who aren't willing to give everything, who won't follow Him all the way. He is saying that lukewarm, halfhearted following is useless, that is sickens the souls. He is saying that this kind of salt is not even fit "for the manure pile".

When salt is salty, it helps manure become good fertilizer...but lukewarm and uncommitted faith is completely useless. It can't even benefit manure.

Wow! Lukewarm faith is useless, isn't it? I pray I am not lukewarm but I am concerned there are lukewarm areas in my life...and really if part of the life is lukewarm, isn't all of it? You can't have a hot and a lukewarm vessel at the same time.

All this and I am only beginning Chapter is good read. The kind that makes you get your Bible and savor the Scriptures, chew on them, process them, fall in love with them all over again...I guess hence the title...Crazy Love.

It feels good to be really stretched to be challenged to be accountable for your choices. Change is good. It is exciting to step back out of the boat...

A huge word of praise and thankfulness to the Lord for my friend Shaley! Girl, you are one radical woman when it comes to Jesus! I thank God for sharing you with me. You sharpen me ;)


Anonymous said...

Can I get an AMEN!!! I read this and it was as strong as any message I have ever heard in any pupit!I sit here with chills on my arms, yet so convicted at the same time. Thank you for a timely message of love, yet my toes are sore from being stepped on! It has made me search my heart and ask questions of myself,and some of the answers are NOT what I wanted to know, but must face.I feel like if I was sitting in a church right now, I would run not walk to the alter. Thanks again!----Jan

Angie said...

Oh my...I finished Crazy Love a few weeks ago and feel like I barely scratched the surface. It is so full of valuable teachings! I've shelved it for a little while, and will go back and reread it when my mind can take more. For now, I'm reading Shepherding a Child's Heart. I sure wish we could have shared our faith in China 4 years ago!

shaley said...

Go Brandy! You sharpen me too... Kelsey and I always go home excited and revived after spending time with yall! We love yall and are excited to see what we will do together for the kingdom!

Julie said...

Love love love this post. It really gets me thinking about what I am doing to make a difference. Everyone needs a Shaley too!!!!