Welcome again to this week's word for the week. Often times in life we can hear something in one area and God will immediately begin to speak on other areas of our lives in which we can apply what we just heard. Several weeks ago I remember sharing how we have to decide what kind of Christians we will be. By that I meant we have to decide rather we're going to be all in when it comes to Christ or the type who is comfortable with simply sitting in church but not having a real relationship with Him. This week I will be going further along from that point.
I heard Dr. Fred Price speak on people who show up late to church. I couldn't help but laugh because all churches have them. They are the ones who seem to time their arrival just before the word goes forth. Anyhow, he made a statement and said those are the people who can be at any other meeting on time except for the one that God wants to meet His children at once a week. Here is where we go further for our word this week.
As he spoke that the Holy Spirit put another thought in me afterwards. When we get to that meeting what exactly do we expect to get out of it? We can meet with God daily as we should and still not get anything out of it. We can pray just because we've heard enough times we need to. We can read the bible just because we heard we ought to. We can attend church weekly just because we've been told it's the right thing to do. These things do not mean they are in us to do on our own. We've just been told we need to.
The problem is not in doing those things. The question is what do you expect to get out of those things you do for God. When you pray what is your expectation in prayer? Do you seek to hear what God has to say or do you seek to simply talk and then get up and walk away? Are you striving to hear the plans that God has for you or do you simply need to tell Him what you want? If God tells you no in prayer for something you really want would you still serve Him and love Him unconditionally? Would you realize He knows far more on what's best for you than you do?
When you pick up the bible do you simply read it or study it? There is a great difference between the two. We can read the news and move on. We can read the word of God and move on. But when we study the word of God we can't simply move on. We begin to digest what God is saying. We begin to ponder on that word and how it applies to us. We begin to hunger and thirst for more of His word. When we do that we spend less time fighting against the word and more time seeking how our lives can better line up with the word. Again, what do you expect to get out of the word when you hear it?
You can go to church simply because you've been taught that's where you need to be on a Sunday morning. The question is the same. What do you expect to get when you get there? Do you go to get it over with and out of the way so you can do your own thing afterwards? Do you go to see who else is there or to talk about others who are there? Do you go to hear what God is saying to you? Do you plan on applying that word to your life when the message is over?
All of these are important questions and they all ask the same thing. What do you expect to get out of what you do for God? You should have a desire to hear His will for your life when you pray. You should have a desire for that word to reach you when you study it. You should have a desire to experience God with His other children when you come to church. Here's what you shouldn't do though. You shouldn't pray just to tell God all about it because He already knows. You shouldn't read because He already said to study to show yourself approved. If you can read this every week and other Christian books then you can study the word of God. You shouldn't show up to church just because. You ought to show up with the expectation of fellowship with other Christians.
Think about what I'm saying this week because there are some choices you will need to make. You need to know what you expect to get from your time spent with God. If not, you will not be faithful in what you do and eventually it won't even matter to you. I've seen a lot of people lose their way on this journey because they are only doing what they do just because rather than know their purpose for doing so. When you know why you are doing what you are doing when it comes to God you will also know why He's called Wonderful. Every time you think you know something about walking with God He will turn around and show you even more. That's when you can truly say there's nobody greater than Jesus!
May the Lord continue to bless and keep you in His grace,
Bishop Carlos J. Lennon