Gereja merupakan organisme yang hidup dan bukan sekedar organisasi buatan tangan manusia. Gereja harus di mulai di rumah tangga kita masing-masing dan bukan sekedar aktivitas religius belaka namun bagian kehidupan sehari-hari. Gereja harus jadi terang dan garam di luar dinding gedung gereja. Sebab gereja adalah kita
Jumat, 07 Oktober 2016
John Fenn, You Might be a Legalistic Believer if... #1
the group home where our oldest son, Chris, lives most of the week, is
another Christian, and she and Chris are the best of friends. The
bonding in the Spirit of these 2 'mentally retarded' adults, to use the
old expression, took place years ago the moment they met at the group
home, without any effort on the part of any parent or staff. (Chris is
mentally about 4, though nearly 37. His friend similar.)
she is upset the staff noticed (on numerous occasions that continue to
this day) Chris grab her hand and tell her "It's okay _____, Jesus is
with us", and he will also just touch her arm and say "Jesus name!"
after she has fallen and hurt herself, which happens due to
her condition quite often.
we bring Chris back to the group home after his weekly 2 day visit
home, we usually have a meal before - McDonald's or Pizza Hut for
instance - and he often insists on bringing her some fries or pizza.
Back at the group home I roll him to the table and she sits down next to
him, and Chris tells her about his time with us. She shakes her head in
agreement, hanging on his every word, eating a french fry here and
there, like they were on a date all by themselves at a burger joint.
It's so cute and innocent and pure.
We wonder what heaven will bring when they can build on their friendship without the hinderances of damaged 'earth bodies'.
Chris loves watching Christian TV shows like "Gospel Bill" and
"Animated Stories of the Bible", and he looks at picture Bibles - he
doesn't know how to read. He has never written a thing in a journal
about the Lord, he has no set prayer time, only goes to church
occasionally when we bring him to house church functions or one of the
staff takes the residents to a local church from time to time.
same can be said of his best friend. Yet they are two of the most
spiritually gifted, pure hearted, genuinely loving people you'd ever
want to meet - they put the rest of us 'normal' Christians to shame in
so many ways. Chris told me one day "Know what Jesus said to me dad?
He's going to walk through the mountains with me, yep, that's what He
said, He's going to walk through the mountains with me one day. Yahoo!
That's so cool!" (As he laughed to himself) Yet Chris has no structure
to his spiritual life at all.
Chris and she were eating the remains of some french fries one day, the
house manager who is also a believer, pulled me aside and told me this
story as her eyes welled up with tears due to the beauty and innocence
of the moment. Chris' friend had been having some health issue
and needed a chest x-ray. As the manager was explaining to her that they
wanted to take a picture of her heart, her eyes filled with wonder and
great eagerness as she asked with all innocence and sincerity, "Will
they see Jesus?"
the big question, isn't it? If they looked at our heart, would they see
Jesus? Chris and his friend don't measure their walk with the Lord by
their spiritual discipline, for they have none. They just walk with the
Lord. They remain as children and have not only entered the kingdom of
God, but walk with Him in it. It is only we so called 'normal' people
who complicate child-like faith with all sorts of encumbrances, so here
are 5 points that may help identify legalism and being religious rather
than just walking with the Father and our Lord. After these 5 points
shared over 3 weeks I'll share a series on how to rid oneself of
legalism and 'being religious'.
You might be a legalistic believer if...
1) Your spiritual discipline defines your spirituality, and how you feel about your spiritual condition
Christian measures themselves by what they are doing. You set rigid
rules and/or spiritual goals for yourself like for instance, getting up
at 5:00 to pray. Or maybe you 'feel led' to fast every Thursday.
Or perhaps someone at church or a small group is reading through the
gospel of John, 1 chapter a day together. It may be you go from activity
to activity, prayer walk to city prayer meeting and if there isn't
something you're involved with you feel listless, without direction, and
rather empty. You measure where you are with the Lord by your spiritual
activity and discipline that activity requires.
the first of each discipline you feel really good about your Christian
walk, but after a few days when you are tired, or it is getting harder
and harder to get out of bed at 5am,
or the church or city prayer meetings are incessant and boring, and you
sleep in that first morning or miss that meeting, you feel horrible.
You are sure you let God down and He is upset with you - and you feel
bad about your walk with Him.
had a person come to me saying they were sure God was angry with them. I
asked why and they said because they made a commitment to get up early
to pray, but all week long had just kept hitting that snooze button on
the alarm because they were so tired. Now they were sure God was angry.
asked if He told them He was angry. "No". I asked what they sensed
inside, in their spirit. "Normal. Peace. I can feel His presence." So I
asked why they thought He was angry since He was still inside and they
sensed peace...they suddenly saw it was their mind poisoned by religious
training causing themselves to measure themselves by their spiritual
discipline that caused them to feel condemned.
is not from God, for it is all about you, what you did or didn't do,
and condemnation pulls us away from God. Conviction is from God, is all
about sin and repentance and making it right with Him, and draws us to
God. Christians will not feel condemnation in their spirit, but they
will be convicted.
run out of room today, but remember Jesus came that we might be born
into the family of God - not born into a set of rules and structure, but
into a family. He wants to commune with us 1 to 1, not a relationship
filtered through a bunch of rules, regulations, and performance based
guidelines we set up thinking that is what He wants - He doesn't. As
Paul said numerous times, all that matters is the new creation in
Christ...and on that basis He walks with us...until next week,
Friendship Crisis, when Christian friends behave like unbelievers,
details instructions in scripture on how to handle an offended friend,
how to examine any part we played in their offense, our responsibility
to them and the Lord, and their responsibility for mending the
relationship. It also covers broken friendships and how to pray and act
towards the once close friend, and how to determine if they were truly a
friend in the first place. Topics include setting and violating
boundaries between friends, one-sided friendships, the decision making
process, and how to let a friend go with a clear conscience. Filled with
insights, you'll be blessed!
September 23- October 14th we will be offering select CDs and MP3 files at 25% off
Glimpses Behind the Scenes- CD/ MP3
Things the Lord has Taught me about Prayer and Worship- CD/ MP3
The Revelation of the Son- CD/ MP3
The Revelation of the Father- CD/ MP3
The Revelation of the Holy Spirit- CD/ MP3
Pursuing the Seasons of God- CD/ MP3
Knowing the Ways of God- CD/ MP3
Getting to Know our Heavenly Father - CD/ MP3
How Jesus Taught Me to Hear the Fathers Voice- DVD
Just a word about our On-line Video Bible School
- these classes, so far; Old Testament I & II, Righteousness and
Our Authority in Christ - are a go-at-your-own-pace, no test, investment
in your own faith and understanding of the Word and Lord. Once
registered, your password is good for a whole year so you can take your
time, but as I'm hearing from students, once they start they have a hard
time stopping! Each class is about 45-55 minutes long, so they are in
easy to receive segments...consider investing in a deeper study of the
things of God!