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16 June 2009

No time for God, but I love to "worship" Him!

I starting reading through 1 Samuel a couple of days ago, and it was noteworthy to me that “in those days messages from the Lord were very rare.” (1 Samuel 3:1) The crazy thing is, I believe we often consider this to be the case today. It isn’t!

In contrast to the time in which 1 Samuel was penned, we have two things that those people didn’t: 1) the written, living Word of God, and 2) the gift of the Holy Spirit. Amazing, isn’t it?! We very literally have the Words of the Creator of the universe at our fingertips – you probably even have several versions lying around your house. And we have the Spirit of the living God within us! Stunning!

So, how often do you dig into what God says in His book? Easily nine out of 10 times I ask this of Christian brothers or sisters, I get the answer, nearly verbatim, “Not as much as I should.”

Kudos for honesty, but is that really an acceptable answer for a follower of Christ? When we say Jesus Christ is our Savior and Lord, would we be more honest if we left off that pesky “Lord” part? Is this how we’re going to see the power of God in our families and in our communities? If we aren’t going to allow Him to be the consuming fire in our lives, will He hopefully go on to the next person?

I’m a little bit puzzled. I’m curious as to how we can realistically believe that we can come to services on a Sunday after this kind of thing...

  • not cracking our Bible since the previous Sunday
  • barely even thinking about our Redeemer all week
  • ignoring what Jesus said about turning the other cheek and serving others
  • leaving God out of the major and minor decisions we’ve made during the week
...and then expect to “worship” – ascribe worth to – God in a "worship service". We don’t really believe that’s possible, do we? Having been a member of the Baptist Church since very nearly before I was born, I can confidently say that we apparently do believe it’s possible, because we’ve practiced it regularly for a very long time.

Please, join me in implementing change in these areas in God’s Church. It's simply ludicrous to imagine that we're going to see God move through His Church in awesome power and might when His Church can't seem to find five minutes to bother with Him throughout the week.


Tony M said...

FYI, I made a few comments regarding "God's Word" here - things that, really, are mind blowing (to me, anyway).

But, back to your post, yes, how often... you are correct, it is quite hypocritical to come and say, "I value God above all else" and then live as though we forgot we'd even said that (through our "worship" of God on Sunday and/or Wednesday). It almost (not quite, but close) fits with this post on Stuff Christians Like. (Sorry, didn't mean to make this comment a link-fest.)

It almost seems as though our prosperity (in America) has helped us get into this condition - when I was on the ship out to sea in the Navy, I was VERY regularly spending time in His Word and prayer... fewer distractions. No computer sitting at my desk waiting on me to check my Facebook (no Facebook for that matter) or chat via IM, no cell phone to tweet or talk on, no movie theatre to go spend time at - no, I'm not saying any of these are inherently BAD (there is not a lot of "stuff" that is inherently bad on its own - inanimate objects generally have a hard time of being good or bad), just that we sometimes put them (or any number of other things) ahead of God in our priority list.

That, of course, is idolatry.

Sorry, back to your post... yes, it is difficult to really say that "God is #1" and that we ascribe the most worth to Him when we spend most of our time on other things. As Jesus said, "Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be." (Matt 6:21, NLT) How does that equate to where you're spending your time? How does that equate to where I'm spending my time?

Reality check time, I think. For me. Thanks for posting this, Dean!

Dean Lusk said...

Thanks for the links! Of course, Stuff Christians Like always has a way with words. :-)

As long as people keep saying, "I really need to do that" and substitute that phrase for actually doing it, there's no chance for improvement.

I believe that most Christians simply expect the Holy Spirit to zap them with an all-new personality, with no commitment or effort on their part.

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