This past Sunday evening, I had the opportunity to teach and lead discussion during our PM service at Church.  Picking up on the morning message from the letter to the Ephesian church in Revelation 2 and the Ephesians apparent departure from their first love (i.e. love for the lost), I decided to try asking and answering the following question –

Why don’t we let our light shine as Matthew 5:14-16 commands us?

My dear brothers and sisters in Christ were gracious to not let the room fall silent and engaged in a lively time of sharing and encouraging one another.  Just in case my question didn’t bring a response and I could only hear the lonely January cricket chirping from underneath the sound booth, I came prepared with the following outlined thoughts –

  1. We don’t have light to shine (Eph 5:8)
  2. We forget about the darkness (Eph 2:11-12)
  3. We love the world (James 4:4 and 1 John 2:15)

But what ways do we love the world?  Again, the interaction was great.  The room was filled with wisdom from on high.  I could have listened to the body’s thoughts all night.  The only three points I had brought to the table were:

  1. We love popularity  (But what of Matthew 10:22?)
  2. We love comfort        (But what of 2 Timothy 3:12?)
  3. We love safety            (But what of 2 Corinthians 11:26?)

I write all this to point you somewhere else.  As is typical, I read something this morning that captures EXACTLY what I was trying to say about the pull on our hearts toward popularity, comfort and safety.  It was written by a Presbyterian Pastor named Brian Carpenter in South Dakota.  I’ve only been through SD once in my life, but if I ever go back I’m staying with Brian and his family.  He doesn’t know this yet, but gathering from how he writes, I don’t think he’ll mind.  🙂

His article is called Mortal’s Greatest Enemy and it’s excellent.  Heartfelt, personal and instructive.  I commend it to you.

-paul

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