Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Relevance - in our walk

Continuing on from the relevance theme, my next question is 'How do we preach a message that is relevant for where people are at". This question is not new, but I took some time to think it through further.

I have a passion for 'running the race'. How do we stay in this race longer and how do we run the race stronger. How do I make the answer to that question relevant for other people running the race?

The people watchers (ABC2 at 6.30) are a group of psychologists who show human behaviour through a series of real life experiments. One such experiment was to pretend they were a psychic and then create a 'reading' that could apply to anyone. No surprises - it worked. There are fears we all share, and there are aspirations we all have - all of which were built into the reading.

I believe this also applies to our walk - there must be common challenges we all face, obstacles we need to overcome and common distractions that enemy uses.

To this end, I thought about where I'm at, and posed the following question: What are they key lessons that I am learning at the moment that are helping me stay in this race. Maybe these distractions, obstacles and challenges are not unique to me, but are applicable to many.

So here is my list - so far:

* It's about God, not about Me;

* It's about the relationship, not about the ritual;

* It's about the heart, not about the tasks;

* It's about grace, not about striving;

* It's about trust, not about understanding;

* It's about obedience, not about the appearance of it;

* It's about the purpose, not about the possessions;

* It's about my character, not about my comfort;

* It's about compassion, not about judgment;

* It's about more about the people, less about the principle.

To see how I'm going with this list, I can look at my attitudes, what I'm praying for, how I'm interracting with people, what I'm struggling with day to day.

Are my prayers a list of "Please can I have", or are they "God, help me draw closer to you"?

Do I go through the motions of church, but not spend time developing the relationship with God?

Am I completing tasks for people, doing all the right things - but without the right motivation?

Am I looking like a Christian in public, without integrity behind closed doors?

Will I give up things I own/want to further what God has called me to do? or have I become indifferent to what matters to God?

Am I happy to let friendships go because I'm right!?!?!? Do I stop trying with people when it gets too hard?

Do I judge others too quickly - but expect people to give me some lattitude?

Am I still trying to gain God's favour by 'doing good', when I already have it?

When tough times come, do I look at what I can learn? or do I blame God?

More research is needed. Watch this space.

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