Thoughts on life, leadership and the movement called the church by Brian C. Hughes, Senior Pastor

by Brian C. Hughes, Senior Pastor

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

More thoughts from Sunday

I used a word picture on Sunday from my 16 hour airplane trip to South Africa. I talked about being in the small, economy class seat and drooling over the Business Elite section. My conclusion was that the reason my journey was limited and constrained was because I was unwilling to pay the price. The benefit didn't add enough value to justify the price (to me).

The analogy works well with our spiritual lives, too. God wants us to know the benefits of a life fully devoted to living His way, but there is a price...and plenty are unwilling to pay it.

I won't rehash the message, you can go hear it online if you want. But I do want to clarify a few things.

1) Every analogy breaks down at some point. So, the point was to get you to evaluate your spiritual life and determine if it was all that it could be. What are the costs and what would be the benefits to 'moving up' in the cabin.

2) In this word picture, there are only 2 seats. That's important. If you give a 3rd seat - one that is in the middle - most everyone will say that it's where they are. This is because long-time Christ followers want to be careful to not come across as arrogant. 'We can never say we've arrived'. So, we would evaluate our lives and say we're in the middle seat. But my next point is important, so keep reading.

3) After a lot of thought and prayer and hours of discussion, we developed the matrix that defines the life of a fully devoted follower as one that:
a) invests in a relationship with God (through prayer, Bible study, classes, etc.),
b) involves himself in the lives of other Christ followers (through small group and other community life, and
c) impacts her world with her faith (through missions, serving in the local church, and sharing her faith)

Nobody every 'arrives' or completely becomes a fully devoted follower of Jesus. We're all on the journey. In the plane ride analogy, we're still in the plane, on the way from where we were to where we're going. But considering that, what kind of journey are you going to make it? Will you sit in economy, where the view is limited and movement is constrained and potential is limited? Or will you stretch out and get the most out of the journey?

I would encourage you to read Philippians 3:12-14. Paul is talking about the goal of becoming perfect. He says that he's not there yet, but "this one thing I do: forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize..."

Paul rides in the big seats. When I evaluate my life, I have to say that I mostly am investing in my spiritual life, involving myself in the lives of other Christ followers, and impacting my world with my faith. Not always, but for the most part I am riding in the front of the plane.

The question is, are you?

No comments: