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Help support the vision of Woodland Hills Community Church!
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Monday, June 15

Today’s Readings: Psalm 18:1-24; 1 Samuel 13:19-14:15; John 18:1-11; 2 Corinthians 8:9-16; Psalm 18:25-50

Ever since I returned from my summer sabbatical experience, I have looked at the life of local churches with a different set of eyes – a set of eyes that tries to sees things not as a church-insider but as a church-outsider. There was one thing I noticed right away when I started seeing things that way. So much of the life of our churches is predicated upon the notion that people should be doing things they don’t enjoy (or even hate!). The standard defense of such an approach? “Well, if we don’t do those awful things, then they’ll never get done.” It’s no wonder that so many of our churches are dying! Who – in their right mind – would want to volunteer to be part of an organization where everyone spends their time doing things they hate!? Paul speaks to these issues in his letter to the Corinthians when he noted: “Your heart’s been in the right place all along. You’ve got what it takes to finish it up, so go do it. Once the commitment is clear, you can do what you can, not what you can’t. The heart regulates the hands” (2 Corinthians 8:11-12 from The Message). So how do you approach your life? Do you spend your time and energy developing your passions (i.e. spiritual gifts) that excite and enliven you, or do you spend the bulk of your time doing onerous activities to which you feel guilt or duty-bound? I sure hope it’s the former and not the latter! Til next time…

1 comment:

Dutch said...

Ps 18:34 "He trains my hands for war." As repugnant as the thought of war is, trained warriors are necessary. Warriors need their equipment and skills to do their best. They are afraid but they can't let fear make the decisions. They also need a shield around their soul. The greatest danger is not death, but soul damage.

Personal conflict has some parallels. I also need new skills which counseling hopefully provides. To protect my soul I can't let fear that the relationship will die control my actions. I need to be grounded in a spirit of peace so that I do nothing out of vengeance and a spirit of calm that one word doesn't affect the whole relationship.