Monday, November 16, 2015

Confident in Ourselves as Christians or Confident in Christ?

A friend recently posed the question: Why, when we go to church and read the Bible, do we continue to make the same mistakes personally and relationally?

In my fifteen years of being honed and winnowed by the Triune God, I believe the answer to her question is because we continue to put ourselves at the helm (even if it is in lesser and lesser degrees—which is good—but I know I personally have to continue to catch myself so as not to do this).

To answer her question in our own lives, here are some questions we can ask ourselves:

    1.  Is my confidence in myself as a Christian, or is my confidence in the triune God of Father, Jesus Christ and Holy Spirit?
     2. Is it Christian culture I desire or Christ Himself?
     3. Am I thinking that it is up to me to show the love of Christ to others, or do I understand that Christ shows His love to others through me in His power, not mine.
     4. Do I pray to God trusting that I can bring about the answer, or that He can? Do I trust the fact that I prayed, or do I trust God?
     5. Do I trust in the Triune God that “He’s got this,” or do I continue to worry, causing inner anxiety and frustration that reveals itself in all manner of poor behavior and self-centered angst.
     6. Do I cultivate and maintain a Biblical worldview informed by the Holy Spirit, or do I cultivate and maintain the view of Christian culture, my church or my politics?
     7. Do I jettison grace for the cause I deem to be greater and more pressing? 
     8. Do I worship the Triune God or do I worship Christian or political culture? 
9. Has theology, denominational doctrine or liturgy replaced faith in the Triune God and His Word (note that the question isn't whether these things accompany faith. The question is have they replaced or minimized faith). 
10. Does church distract me from the Triune God and His Word?

Copyright Barb Harwood

“Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you.” Romans 12:1-3

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