Monday, April 13, 2009

choose your mountain wisely


What mountain are you willing to stake your claim, stand your ground, and die on? The mountain represents something that maybe you are defiant, passionate, consumed, or dedicated to?

I know I am speaking to many different people today, but let me break this up into 2 basic groups of people. Churchy people and un-churchy people. (don't ask me where I got those terms?)

1. CHURCHY PEOPLE. These people use the name of God or religion to claim their mountain. Sadly, the mountain is not reaching the lost, comforting the hurting, or showing grace. There mountain is usually theology, doctrines, opinions, and causes. They fight losing their sacred hymns to modern praise and worship (in 20 years current music will be sacred). Some people get caught up on issues like, pre-destination, once saved always saved, calvinism, luthernism, catholicism, ignorantism(ok I made that one up), and the list is endless. Church issues, religious legalism, narrow-minded theology, consumed with knowing, but missing the point. These people once were saved by grace and had so much potential, but instead of growing in the grace and knowledge(2 Peter 3:18) of God, they got led astray by complacency, tradition, legalism, a movement, a person, or the devil. They still go to church, they serve faithfully, but they hurt the church and God by their arrogrant, self-centered, modern-day pharisee atttitude, and their willingness to die on their mountain so they can be right, be better, or prove their point.

2. UN-CHURCHY PEOPLE. These people don't use doctrines, philosophy, or the church as the source of their particular mountain they are willing to die on. Their mountains are far different. It could be drugs, alcohol abuse, sexual encounters. They live to party, consume, and do what they want when they want. They are not going to let anyone else dictate their rebellion. Others, it's work, career, or money. You'll do what it takes to get to the top, make more money, and be recognized, you don't care who you hurt, if you lose your family, or what ethics you use, as long as you get waht you want. Others it's sports, hobbies, or interests. Nothing consumes your life like your tv, the golf course, the football field, basketball court, or maybe it's fishing, hunting, hiking, gardening, shopping, social groups, etc.---------------------------------------------------------------------------
When we think of causes and people being "out there" we think of people blowing up abortion clinics, protesting the president, dressing up like animals when the circus is in town, but our lives reflect our true passions and sadly our true "gods". We don't have to join peta, nra, right to life, or the local cult or church to pick mountains to die one. We do it everyday.

A parent starts out trying to protect their children, only to shelter them. A person starts out attending a party, only to eventually get addicted to pot, binge drinking, or become sexually active with people they don't even know anything about. A person takes a job, only to lose their life by becoming a slave to workaholism or greed. A person gets saved and instead of growing in their faith, they grow in their judgement of people or their own doctrine. It always amazed me how people want the grace, mercy, and forgiveness of God, yet they don't think others deserve it, especially if they don't agree with them.

Is the mountain you are defending right now in your life really worth dying over? Are you really ready or willing to risk your life for something that is destroying you?
If you are a Christian, I challenge you to go back to when you first made that commitment and evaluate your life to the point where you are today, what influenced you? Where are you headed? Why did you become so focused on certain issues or mindsets? When did you stop relying on God? When did it become about you and not Him? Do you have faith or religion?
If you are not a Christian, I challenge you to really consider the difference a relationship with God could make in your life. I am sure you have a friend or know someone who is a christian that you respect and like, ask them about God and why they are a Christian. Maybe find a local church in your area that teaches the bible and where you can seek, research, and learn about God and what it means to be a Christian. I think if you find God, you'll move mountains. No longer will your focus be yourself, your job, your hobbies, or any other self-centered cause. It will change your life if you are open and willing to learn.

Christianity doesn't immune you from struggles, problems, sin, or distractions. Make sure whatever one you face, you face it with God, and don't be willing to die for a cause that's not God's. Also, don't claim a mountain in the name of God, when in fact it's your cause not God's. Alot of people claim things in the name of God, but God is no where to be found.

"Stand your ground. And don't hold back. Throw yourselves into the work of the Master, confident that nothing you do for Him is a waste of time of effort."
I Corinthians 15:58 (The Message)

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