So this past weekend I went to preach out west in the great state of Utah! Man, what an awesome weekend event! I have been going all over the country doing this event. I'm calling it:
'What's Wrong With The Church And How To Fix It'.
I know it sounds pretty plain...but I am seeing so much of the same things in every church I have visited over the past 10 years. I see how people struggle with anger, bitterness, and un-forgiveness. So I am going to churches all over and talking about topics like:
*Anger- (and how to over come it)
*The Power of Our Words
*Why Men Are Important To The Church
*The Expectations We Have In Marriage
*How To Find Legitimate Freedom In Christ
These are just a few topics I'm hitting on.
I am finding it so insane how people who claim to know Jesus Christ fall into so many SMALL traps set by the enemy. Tests, that when we really sit and think about them, we should be passing with flying colors...but in reality we're not! We fall on our faces.
Let me be honest...after speaking on the topic of anger I get to the airport, get delayed and I get angry. I am thankful my wife was with me and all she had to say was ... 'Are you going to practice what you preach!!?'
And I was like 'ARE YOU SERIOUS, DEVIL!?!? ' I can't believe he was so easily let into my mind. I thought I was stronger than that. It just got me thinking that, as Christ followers, we have got to be on guard and we have to be aware of what is happening around us because the devil is like a lion and he's ready to pounce and kill us.
So often we in America are happy, lazy, and dumb. We're not paying attention. This has got to stop. We have to be awake with the Holy Spirit guiding us to our final destination or we're going to be in a mess.
So how do we get there?
1. Immerse ourselves in God's Word
I know that sounds normal and like a 'duh dude' statement, but the sad fact is that we're not. We need to get focused on HIS WORD. God's Word (the Bible) has power...to bring life of the everlasting kind!
2. Get plugged into your church
Seriously...this is one of the things we as 'Christ followers' are ignoring the most. We are more concerned with our kids' sports teams than we are with our kids' eternal futures. The way we prioritize you'd think that what we do in church really does not matter. With the actual amount of time that we invest in the community of believers you'd say that most 'Christians' think the church is a waste of time and that the other organizations they are committed to have more value. This really has to stop. Christians need to make the church a priority rather than an after thought.
3. Stop making excuses and start executing an action plan
I have heard so many people when they come to an event I'm speaking at say stuff like this: 'I really wish I could be here more, but I am just so busy that I could only make it today'. First off, I'm not trying to be rude here, but in all reality we do what we want to do. If you wanted to come to the event, it would have been on your list of things to come to (I am guilty of saying this to people). So stop lying. I know you're trying to be nice, but you really don't want to be involved. If you wanted to be there, you would have been there. If you want to be more committed and involved to your church or Bible study...start executing an action plan to do what you want to do and stop making the excuses.
4. Spend more time in prayer
This can be a tough one. We talk more about our issues than we pray about them. We need to be really intentional about our prayer life. We need to understand that prayer changes things. We need to start having conversations with Jesus (this includes me). Just begging and complaining in our prayer life is not going to work. We need to stop before we pray and ask God 'How do you want me to pray'...and then actually wait on the Lord and see what happens. Start looking around for God to move once you've prayed...believe that God can and will answer, even if the answer is NO. Stop talking about your problems with everyone around you during prayer meeting and actually pray. It just might change everything.
I think these are just a few small things we can do to get us closer to God. This is what I've learned this weekend. I pray I can put them into practice.