Being a 2nd Class Christian

 

Alfred_Stieglitz_-_The_Steerage_-_Google_Art_Project

Other seeds fell on shallow soil with underlying rock. The seeds sprouted quickly because the soil was shallow.  But the plants soon wilted under the hot sun, and since they didn’t have deep roots, they died.”
Matthew 13:5-6

Sometimes when I go to church, or attend a bible study group; I come away and feel that I’m a 2nd class christian.

That I’ve not been greeted, or the church greeter looks like they have been sucking on a lemon.  Here we are, saved! no less; and some people can’t crack a smile.

This happened twice at a local church.  By the time I got past the second greeter, I was just about done with that church.  The sermon itself was well done.

Bible study tonight.  Engaging talk by a well regarded pastor, and it all fell down after that.  Not a welcoming christian group.

Christ, please grant me the strength to keep serving you.  Amen.

“Well isn’t that a mindfield of religous discussion”

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1 Corinthians 11:2-34

Paul addresses the issue of honour and propriety in worship, and in particular he looks at the role and place of women in worship. A huge amount of ink has been spilt discussing what this passage means. There is general agreement that much of it is cultural – few churches today expect women to cover their hair, for example.

It was an interesting BIOY, which has me researching all sorts of different viewpoints about 1 Corinthians 11.

BIOY: Use your influence for good.

We can influence people for good was what I thought today’s BIOY was about.
When I think about that, I’m reminded of this quote from Quantum Leap

Al, the Bartender: “At the risk of over inflating your ego Sam, you’ve done more. The lives you’ve touched, touched others. And those lives, others! You’ve done a lot of good Sam Beckett. And you can do a lot more.”

Go forth, and make a difference to people in a GOOD way.

Been in my wallet for a while …

judgement
Image courtesy Nick Youngson – http://nyphotographic.com/

John 3:18

There is no judgment against anyone who believes in him. But anyone who does not believe in him has already been judged for not believing in God’s one and only Son.

Romans 8:28

And we know that God causes everything to work together[a] for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.

BIOY: “What matters most is not knowledge but love”

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What you need to know

Didn’t take much away from this. I suppose some of the stuff I learnt is

  • Our behaviour in front of other people matter
  • Enjoy life and make the most of it.
  • It’s important to reflect on things.

As Eugene Peterson translates, ‘We sometimes tend to think we know all we need to know in answer to these kinds of questions – but sometimes our humble hearts can help us more than our proud minds. We never really know enough until we recognise that God alone knows it all’
v.1b–3, MSG

Circle of Responsibility

“Five basic areas where God gives you directions on how you are supposed to behave and live.”

Circle of Responsibilities

This has been taken from a sermon by Dan Blied.

Definitions
The World

How we relate to people who don’t follow the Lord. People who aren’t following Christ. Unbelievers.
Matthew 5:13-16 Colossians 4:5-6 1 Peter 2:11-12 Romans 12:17-21

Family
Parents.  Spouse.  Children.
Colossians 3:18-21 Ephesians 5:22-28

The Church
God has given us many instructions on how we are supposed to relate to each other.  And how we are supposed to view our leaders.
John 15:12-17

Work
Employment and Education.
Colossians 3:22-25 Ephesians 6:5-9 1 Peter 2:18

The State / Government
What are my relations supposed to be like between me and the government.
Matthew 22:15-22 Romans 13:1-5

Me
Everything God has built into me and given me to fill those responsibilities.  The Scriptures, the Spirit.  A few other things: Time, Talents, Gifts, Abilities Personality, Emotions, Possessions, Volition, Intelligence, Conscience, Health , Experience, Energy

Sermon Notes
My responsibilities are defined by The Scriptures and The Word of God.
My areas of responsibility are indicated by the terms surrounding the circle.

All areas are important – one area may have greater importance at a certain time than another in a specific set of circumstances.

We never completely finish any area (except in rare circumstances).

We are to be faithful and obedient in all areas.

Over investment in one area will take resources from another area.

As I grow personally and spiritually, I grow in obedience and effectiveness in these areas.


I use the resources within the circle to fulfill the responsibilities surrounding the circle.

All the resources are gifts on loan. Tools God has put in your bag to be used for His Work, and others, for the glory of God.

God ultimately determines the identity and quantity of the resources I have.

I am responsible for being generous with the resources I have been given.


Central to my life and responsibilities is knowing and serving The Lord.
(The important thing is what happens inside that circle, not the areas around that circle. Central to my life is cultivating and nourishing a relationship between God and me.)

The God-pleasing fulfillment of my responsibilities comes by the ?Spirit of the Lord?.

God’s work in my life will impact each of these areas.

The degree of my spiritual transformation will shape/color my fulfillment of each of my responsibilities.

Choose JOY


"Be in the joy of the moment", writes Nicky Gumbel.

They seldom reflect on the days of their life, because God keeps them occupied with gladness of heart.

Ecclesiastes 5:20

How do we obtain joy? Our attitude is "the paintbrush of the mind".

In parts of my life, I look at other people and think

"Why wasn't I selected. I'm as good as them!"

The lesson I need to keep reminding myself is

"Nevertheless, each person should live as a believer in whatever situation the Lord has assigned to them, just as God has called them. This is the rule I lay down in all the churches."

I should reflect on 1 Corinthians 7:17 more often:

Covered in the dust of Jesus

Interesting insight into the story of Jesus Walking on Water (Matthew 14:22-33).
“Jesus immediately reached out and grabbed him. “You have so little faith,” Jesus said. “Why did you doubt me?””
– Matthew 14:31
Rob Bell argues that you could interpret v.31 as “Jesus immediately reached out and grabbed him. “You have so little faith (in yourself)”
Jesus would not have called Peter (v29) if he thought Peter couldn’t do it.
And Peter can see Jesus walking on the water, so Peter isn’t doubting Jesus’s ability.
Peter has a lack of faith in his own ability.
“Jesus has faith that you can follow him and you can be like him.  He believes it.”
– Rob Bell