As the story goes, a pastor transformed himself into a homeless person and went to the large church that he was soon to be introduced as the lead pastor. He walked around his soon-to-be church for 30 minutes while it was filling with people for service. Only three people said hello to him. He asked for change for food and no one gave him change. Others avoided him. A church leader asked him to leave, saying the church was not a place to loiter.
Later, the homeless person went into the sanctuary to sit down in the front of the church. He was asked by the ushers if he would please sit in the back. People greeted him with stares, dirty looks, and people looked down on him.
As he sat in the back of the church, he listened to the church announcements and such. When all that was done, the elders went up and were excited to introduce the new pastor of the church to the congregation.
“We would like to introduce to you our new Pastor.” The congregation looked around clapping with joy and anticipation.
The homeless man sitting in the back stood up and started walking down the aisle. The clapping stopped with all eyes on him. He walked up the altar and took the microphone from the elders (who were in on this) and paused for a moment then he recited,
“Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world.
“”For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’
“’Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’ ‘The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’”
After he recited this, he looked towards the congregation and told them all what he had experienced that morning. Many began to cry, and many heads were bowed in shame.
He then said, “Today I see a gathering of people, not a church of Jesus Christ. The world has enough people, but not enough disciples. When will YOU decide to become disciples?” He then dismissed service until next week.
Following in the footsteps of Jesus Christ should be more than just talk. There is a walk to match.
The question to the church, to you and me, is this: Are you living a Christian life that follows Christ’s master plan to reach humanity? When you do…it will change your home, church, community and the world. But you need to live it every day.
Whether we are playing a game, driving a car, or baking a cake, there are certain rules that must be followed for our safety as well as our success.
Life’s rules are simple as well. Grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and forever. Amen. (2 Peter 3:18.)
The Bible teaches that our Christian life is one of constant growth. When you were born again, you were born into God’s family. It is God’s purpose that you will grow into full stature and become mature in Christ.
It would be against the law of God and nature if you were to remain a baby and thus become a spiritual dwarf. In 2 Peter 3:18, the Bible says that we are to grow. It implies steady development, constant enlargement, increasing wisdom.
For one to grow properly, certain rules must be observed for good spiritual health:
· Read your Bible daily. Do not be content to skim through a chapter merely to satisfy your conscience. Hide the Word of God in your heart (memorize.) It comforts, guides, corrects, encourages – all we need is there.
· Learn the secret of prayer. Prayer is communicating. Every prayer that you pray will be answered. Sometimes that answer may be “Yes” and sometimes “No,” and sometimes it is “Wait,” but nevertheless it will be answered.
· Rely constantly on the Holy Spirit. We know that the Holy Spirit prays for us (Romans 8), and what a comfort that should be to the weakest of us. Stand aside and let Him take over all the choices and decisions of your life. Learn when to do and when to wait on God.
· Attend church regularly. The visible church is Christ’s organization upon earth. Christians need one another, we need to gather together to worship God and nothing can take the place of church attendance. Birds of a feather flock together!
· Be a witnessing Christian. We witness in two ways: by life action- you are living it every day and by word – and the two, where possible, should go hand in hand. Always remember, your words and actions must complement each other.
· Be an obedient Christian. Let Christ have first place in all the choices of your life. Living a Christian life is priority not a when you can do it process.
· Learn how to meet and deal with temptation. Temptation is not sin. It is yielding that is sin. Let Christ through the Holy Spirit do the fighting for you. I am reminded of how Christ was tempted by Satan on the Mount. Christ did not give in, thus we say Jesus is the only sinless person ever. There have been some mighty good people, but only Christ is considered the sinless one.
· Be a wholesome Christian. Our lives and appearance should commend the Gospel and make it attractive to others. If we look like the world, act like the world, talk like world, how can others see Jesus in us? Hard to know you are where you are if you can’t tell the world’s people from God’s people.
· Live above your circumstances. Don’t let your circumstances get you down. Learn to live graciously within them, realizing the Lord Himself is with you. When you know you are not alone, somehow the circumstances are never as bad as you feel. When you leave the problem to Christ, how many times have you overcome and just did not see how it happened? With Christ all things are possible. He is still the God on the Mountain or in the Valley…in every situation. Yes he supplies your needs. “Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospers.” (3 John 1:2)
· Let love be the ruling principle of your life. Jesus said to those who followed Him, “By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.” (John 13:35). The greatest demonstration of the fact that we are Christians is that we love one another.
When you are applying these principles you will find you are more than an overcomer, but you are living example of the teaching of your Savior. You are someone who impacts lives for the greater good. You are the one who people look to with wanting and questioning eyes.They want to come in out of the cold to warm by the revival flames burning.
Your challenge is simple: Be more than you can be. More than you were yesterday. Be that living example of a walking talking Christian in 2020!
By Charlie Griffin
Charlie Griffin is a regular contributor to SGNScoops and is a recording artist with Classic Artists Music Group.
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