This Is How We Roll

Posted: December 13, 2014 in Church, From Me To You, Leadership, Theology
Tags: , , , , , ,

Rolling Pin MiceIn my last post, I talked a bit about how one should exit a church staff position. Unfortunately, many people calling themselves Christians still live a life void of some decidedly basic characteristics vital to the Christian walk.

As James 1:19-26 tells us, a person who does not listen to and apply Scriptural principles in his life has no business claiming religion at all, for his devotion is useless. Ephesians 4 speaks volumes as to the life of a Christian, and any Christian worth his proverbial salt (ha ha) will strive to live his life according to these principles, as they are the core of the godly lifestyle.

Consider the themes of this chapter: spiritual unity, mutual support and respect, the absence of destructive competition and bitterness, proper emotional engagement (it says to be angry and not sin, not to avoid anger altogether), kindness, and more. What are these characteristics but the life and walk of Christ? And what are we to do but to strive to be more like Him?

Consider this statement: If you are truly acting in love towards another person — regardless of whether that person is a Christian — you will do your best before God to honor His wishes and treat that person with the dignity and respect that he deserves as God’s creation. And you will, in your Christian duty, walk in forgiveness toward that person even as Christ was born, lived, and died in forgiveness for the worst of the worst.

How often do you actually see that lived out consistently in the lives around you? Sure, it’s easy to do it when the person who just knocked over your prized guitar is your close friend. But what if an arrogant teen wrecks your daughter’s car and doesn’t offer to pay anything to replace it? What if that irritating guy who talks too much keeps calling you at some ungodly hour?

Yes, these are some pretty irritating situations that probably won’t happen to you. But isn’t that exactly the point? Isn’t your character really tested in the heat of the moment, when it seems like you have every right to be miffed? If you find yourself making excuses and justifying your behavior in these extreme situations, then you may need to look in the mirror of scripture again. If you tend to play the victim over the course of your experiences, then maybe there’s more to it than just a series of unfortunate events.

There’s an old saying that goes “If it seems like everyone else is the problem, then it’s probably you, not them.” One application of this is that if you find yourself seeing bad things in everyone around you, you may be avoiding what you don’t want to see in yourself, grasping for all the things outside of yourself that let you avoid the junk in your own life.

If you have an issue with someone, practice what Ephesians 4 says! Speak truth with that person, and do not let the sun go down on your anger. Talk with the person without malice, speaking only edifying words into the situation, seeking to satisfy rather than grieve the Holy Spirit. Some have said that trust is the foundation of a solid community, and trust cannot be built if we refuse to speak truth to one another, even if it hurts. That has been a major problem these past several months in my church, and it has done a lot of damage. And I have seen it do damage in other churches, too.

So will you join me in building a better mousetrap — I mean church? Will you do hard things, exposing your hearts to one another rather than keeping secrets and holding grudges? Or will you live dangerously shallow lives, making only meaningless relationships and taking all the wrong risks? (Note: The music video for “This Is How We Roll” contains some offensive and suggestive images, so click here if you would prefer a lyrics video.)

The Christian life is about striving to live every day the same way, whether the world is ugly or not and regardless of whether it’s Monday or Sunday. The Christian life is about constantly holding the mirror of Scripture up to our lives and seeking out its influence. Christianity is about conforming our lives to God’s Word — neither changing His Word to agree with our belief system nor ignoring Scripture for convenience or comfort. This is not the Florida Georgia Line. This is How We Roll.

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