For 2018 we have adopted the ReaLife theme. So approximately 330 days into the year, I thought I’d see if we could perform a self-evaluation together. How have we fared in integrating our faith and disciple-making into our everyday, common, and busy ReaLife situations and what have we found out about our walks with Christ?
One of the things that has been convicting to me, as Durwin has preached through many challenging texts with serious implications, is that I’ve had to ask myself if I’ve been guilty of having a double life. Have I separated my church involvement/work from the rest of my life at times? It is so dangerous for us to rely too much on our local church to provide us with what we need spiritually and not learn to find nourishment through God’s word, prayer, and service to Him on our own and leading our families to do so. I have had to realize that, if I’m not careful, I can have my church life and then turn it off once I get in my car to go home or wherever else I’m going. Unfortunately, when I’m guilty of this I’m showing exactly what my ReaLife is… evaluations can be tough!
Living out our faiths can’t be something we turn on and off depending on where we are. Either we are walking with Christ or we aren’t. Sure we will stumble sometimes, but the implied action in stumbling is that you’re striving for something and have a mis-step, not altogether departing from a path with no interest in returning.
1 John 2-6 says “2 He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world. 3 And by this we know that we have come to know him, if we keep his commandments. 4 Whoever says “I know him” but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him, 5 but whoever keeps his word, in him truly the love of God is perfected. By this we may know that we are in him:6 whoever says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked.”
As it has for me, this passage may serve as a painful reminder of the importance of following God’s commands and walking with him. If we say we abide in Him then we ought to walk in the same way He walked. That’s not easy, but are we striving to make our ReaLife a lifestyle of praise and service to Him? I know I my evaluation is leaning towards… “Needs work.” However, this verse humbles and inspires me to seek a life lived for Christ because I do claim to know and abide with Christ!
If we lead a double life where God comes first at church but falls far down the list at home, work, school, or online, then perhaps we are liars as John writes. Ouch. Ok pencils down, how did we do? Have we put disciple-making at the forefront of our priorities, making the ways of God our ReaLife all the time? Or do we all need work? It was never going to be perfected in a year, so the beauty of the body of Christ is that we can grow together. As we try to focus on disciple-making with 2020 vision in 2019, how will our ReaLife priorities climb closer and closer to His? If we say we abide in God, then we ought to walk in the way He walked. Let’s encourage each other in the word and prayer to do so.