How would you sum up what you do in life?
If you were speaking to someone you had never met and they said what do you do, what would you say? I guess you would talk about what you do the most. Let’s see what the Apostle says (from the Message translation), “We preach Christ, warning people not to add to the Message. We teach in a spirit of profound common sense so that we can bring each person to maturity. To be mature is to be basic. Christ! No more, no less. That’s what I’m working so hard at day after day, year after year, doing my best with the energy God so generously gives me.” (Colossians 1 v 28-29) This is the focus of Paul’s life.
Paul was not lazy nor was he worried about offending the Church by admonishing it (NIV). He didn’t concern himself with entertaining them. He did worked tirelessly to do his best to make them like Christ. A friend posted on social media yesterday saying how he can preach the gospel with no preparation and yet because he wants to do his best he had already worked 20 hours on a message he was giving soon. The point being he was still giving his best for the gospel.
Next time your Pastor preaches do please give your attention to that message. They have probably worked tirelessly to bring out the truths of the Scripture and to present them in such a way that can be clearly understood and applied. Sometimes the Pastor has to be brave. They know their people and what they are going through can be often a huge variety of circumstances. Do they try and tip-toe through that obstacle course in order not to make any reference that would suggest they are speaking into at least one person’s situation? If they do then you will have such a watered down message it will be worth nothing. How many get offended because ‘Pastor was talking to me!’? Pastor was actually very brave to apply Scripture in such a way that it spoke to the heart of their church so that the members become more like Christ. That’s what happened!
If we are going to grow and mature in Christ then it is going to hurt. Hebrews 4 v 12 says that the Word of God is sharper than a double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. That sounds painful doesn’t it?!
Recently I have been having lots of conversations with Pastors regarding blind-spots. The AA says, “Failure to adequately check your blind spots while driving increases the risk of road accidents.” But what of the blind-spots in our own lives?
I have found people who have friends all their lives but who never ask them to show them where their blind-spot is. Isn’t that crazy? They would rather risk accidents, mistakes and hurt than ask their friend to tell them the truth because they would not want to hear they are not perfect, even though they are not.
If you have found a church or friends who take the responsibility for the growth and maturity of every believer seriously enough to be honest enough, then you have found gold.