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Monday, February 28, 2011

Wash the dishes.

2 Timothy 2:20-21

20 But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and silver, but also of wood and clay, some for honor and some for dishonor. 21 Therefore if anyone cleanses himself from the latter, he will be a vessel for honor, sanctified and useful for the Master, prepared for every good work.

What is a vessel used for? Some vessels carry blood. Blood vessels. Some vessels carry cargo. Cargo vessels. And some vessels carry messages. That’s us. We are to be the vessel that carries the message of Christ to a world that needs to hear this message.

But these verses say that there are different kinds of vessels. Some vessels are of honor and some vessels are of dishonor. Are you living an honorable life? Because if you are not living an honorable life, then God will not use you for good works. I have heard it asked by many people, “How can I get God to use my life?” This verse makes it very simple… live a life of honor. Cleanse yourself, allow yourself to be sanctified.

Let's put it this way. If you go over to someone's house and they have two plates, one plate is clean and perfect and the other one is gross and disgusting, which plate would you use? The obvious answer is the clean one. God's choice is no different. He would rather use the clean plate too.

If you want to truly reach your community for the cause of Christ, if you want to be used yourself by God to do amazing things then you must strive to be holy… always… holiness matter to God.

I think that if God were to tell you right now what He could do in your life if you would let Him that it would blow your mind. But God can never do these amazing things in your life until you become a vessel than He can use. A vessel of honor. Nothing is a substitute for personal holiness and moral authority.

You see, you can fool people when you are in a crowd. You can convince people that you are a vessel of honor. But the true measure of who you are as a person is what you are like when no one is around.

So when it comes time for God to use you, will you be ready? And the true question that it comes down to then is this… are you more interested in your sin or being used by God?

And if you are more interested in being used by God then you must surrender to the process of sanctification. You must strive every day to be more and more like Jesus, you must strive to be a vessel of honor.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Sometimes Christians are weird.

Guys, I think if we were all honest with ourselves, we would agree that sometimes Christians are weird.

You know for a long time Christians differentiated themselves from the rest of the world by looking as “Christian” as possible. We had t-shirts that said things like “God’s Gym” and “Faith Book” instead of Facebook. We shopped at Christian bookstores, went to Christian movies and Christian concerts and, my personal favorite, even had our own brand of breathmint called a “Test-a-mint.”

And then we started this thing called a Christian bumper sticker. We put a fish on the back of our car that said Jesus, and then the atheists put legs on the fish and made it say Darwin, and then we got a big whale on the back of our car that ate the Darwin fish, and then the atheists came back with a dinosaur to eat the whale that was eating the Darwin fish. We had a huge battle going on through the bumpers of our cars. And then the Christians got real clever and tried to summarize their beliefs into small, ridiculous, possibly offensive sayings like “God made Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve” and “I Believe in the Big Bang, God spoke and bang it was.” So instead of trying to have legitimate conversations with people about what they believe and why they believe it, we shut off the conversation with our bumper sticker argument mentality. And I got to think that sometimes… Christians are weird.

I mean you can completely understand why the outside world would look at our subculture and think I am just not like those Christians and honestly, I don’t really want to be like those people either.

And then some of us actually try to engage the outside world in a conversation of what we believe. And the problem with this is that we have become so indoctrinated with key phrases that we don’t know how to adequately have a conversation with someone about what we believe without using our Christian clich├ęs.

Let me give some examples of what I am talking about. Let’s suppose you are going to get your car fixed and the mechanic engages you in a spiritual conversation. What do you say?

Well some people would say “Mr. Mechanic listen to me because I am on fire for God.” Mr. Mechanic is thinking, “Why is God setting him on fire, is it one of those weird churches.”

And then he would say “My life has never been the same since I’ve been saved.” Mr. Mechanic is thinking, “I can understand that, nobody is try to set you on fire anymore.”

And then you give your best closing argument “Mr. Mechanic I just want you to know that I am a Wide-eyed, Sanctified, Blood Bought, Spirit Taught, Bible Totin', Scripture Quotin', Satan Bashin', Sin Trashin', Christ Followin', Pride Swallowin', Hard Prayin', Truth Conveyin', Faith Walkin', Gospel Talkin', Bonafide Big Time Believer who is washed in the blood of the lamb and I am proud of it!” And I am sorry to say but not only does Mr. Mechanic not know a thing that you just said, but he is making fun of you in his head and trust me he is not using words that go very well with the Christian subculture.

In closing, I understand your enthusiasm... I share it. But when dealing with the outside world... try not to be so weird :)