Many times we hear we have it all, we just only need one thing to make our lives complete. Jesus! As a result, many come to what they think is Christianity. They are convinced of having a happier life with fewer troubles.
They are told of the added benefits to their lives, much like taking vitamins. However, when the storms hit and the natural struggles of life continue, they are confused. They may call God a liar, and even turn completely away.
SOLD A LIE
Why? Because they were sold a lie, one that is attractive. Who wouldn’t want what they were offered? They were promised a somewhat perfect life! Christ plus their worldly things, to a person who is looking for relief, is a great agreement.
This is actually opposite of the truth. We are promised the precious gift of salvation, through the righteousness of Christ. He forgives us of our sin and we become children of God! We become co-heirs with Christ, inheriting the benefits of our heavenly home. This is for those who repent and believe.
However, with those graces, we have also entered into the spiritual battlefield. We are now an enemy of Satan. We can expect him to attack. We have entered into a fight. Yes, a fight that is already won through Christ. Yet a fight nonetheless. Also, because of the love of the Father, we are slowly being stripped of sin.
IT IS NOT ONLY ROSES
It will be painful, even though we will experience the beauty and love of our Savior, we will be stripped of everything that is not like Christ. This slow process of sanctification come with tears, battles, storms, and difficult times. Our Father of mercy and everlasting grace doesn’t leave us alone. We are treated well by our King. He does nothing to hurt us. He does all things well!
Yet, the person who was sold a lie of easiness is confused when life gets harder. This is why we must share the whole gospel when we minister to others, that is our sinfulness and how we are first enemies of God. But, being born again, a thing only the Holy Spirit can do, is how salvation is accomplished. Then the process of that sanctification continues forever.
An ongoing relationship with God, growing closer to Him, becoming more like Him, which is what the true Christian desires, is the walk of our lives. We don’t desire some perfect life advertised by the world. We are not of this world, but only live in it. We are not of this earthly Kingdom, which is the kingdom of darkness. We belong to the kingdom of Heaven, one of righteousness.
According to the parable of the sower, about a fourth of those who are told the gospel actually receive the truth and become real Christians (Luke 4-15). What happens often though is that we don't want to get rejected. Our pride is offended. In that case when someone says no, we take it personally.
The truth is they are refusing the message, not us. They are refusing Christ, not the messenger. We are only called to go and sow. It is the work of God to make true believers! Then, those who receive the Gospel of truth, are meant to be disciplined by those who are in the Body of Christ.
THE DESIRE FOR NUMBERS
However, many are overcome by the desire of numbers. I can’t count the number of times I have heard, “we had 48 raise their hand for salvation.” If those are truth conversions...praise God! What a wonderful work of God!
But, usually the case is they don’t stay. They come for 3 or 4 services and decide that church didn’t take away their troubles. They decide they might as well stick with what they were doing before.
Or, there are those of us who change the way we do church to attract the world. We do things that we feel will fill our churches. We want mega-churches over a community. So we create things similar to a concert, where the focus is more on the effects, colors, and smoke on the stage than on God Himself. The messages are self-focused instead of Christ-centered.
A HARD TRUTH
I realize this may not sit well with many, but it is just the truth. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for true worship that may include those things, but I am not for those things to be magnified over Christ! People should not decide to go to church, only because they like the music. People learn from the hearing of the Word of God! That is scriptural (Romans 10:17)!
Christian’s have a beautiful confidence in a Savior. We don’t walk this narrow path alone. I sometimes wonder how people walk through this depraved and sinful world without Christ. I mean really!! I would just die of the hardship that affects every human.
YET, A GREAT HOPE
Though Christians are not exempt from those struggles, we have hope, help, and a friend of God. Salvation is free for those who will come. We are to plead with others to come to the faith, praying that the Holy Spirit would work in their hearts; that they would be born again...for real!
SHARE THE BEAUTY OF THE WHOLE GOSPEL
My sister, let's do as Jesus told us to do (Matthew 28:19). Let's go and make disciples of Him. Let's share the whole Gospel. Let’s not only share the receiving of righteousness, but also the process of emptying of self to become more like God Himself. That should be seen as a beautiful thing and not a burden that comes with salvation.
We are becoming perfected! What?!? So great!! I hope the Lord would correct anything that I have said, by the Holy Spirit in you. I pray that you would not see the flaws in this post, but that the Lord would encourage you in those things that He would have you see, for His glory. Let's run, throwing aside all that would weigh us down, and let's tell the world of our precious Savior (Hebrews 12:1)!
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