Monday, May 04, 2009

Christianity Optional?

Christianity Optional?

“But if serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your forefathers served beyond the river, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.”
Joshua 24:12(NIV)

I love this verse in the OT book of Joshua. The prophet lays it out directly for the Israelites. You have an option. Make a choice. If you want to serve the false gods your ancestors served, then choose them. If you want to choose the false Gods of the country we are currently living in, choose them. But, if you want to choose THE God, then choose Him. No matter what your choice, me and my family are choosing God.

We do have a choice in who or what God we serve. THE God created us, but despite us being His creation He allows us the choice of whether we want to live for Him or not and serve Him or not. What makes that more difficult is that our churches are full of part-time Christians. They choose to follow God when it’s convenient, when they have time, when it fits into their schedules, or they have nowhere else to turn. The problem with that type of Christianity, is it’s really not Christianity. Christianity is about commitment, service, faithfulness, and relationship. Those type of things take priority. Christianity is not about convenience, comfort, preferences, or adapting to our schedule. Christianity is not fitting God into our lives, schedules, or lifestyle, it’s about us fitting into God.

We teach our kids to never miss practices, games, or performances and how they need to be committed to the team, their sport, or their hobbies, but then teach them church attendance or involvement is optional. We choose playing golf, going fishing, shopping, or traveling, over our service and commitment to God. I think we are trying to have the best of both worlds. We want the benefits of Christianity (salvation, heaven, etc…) without the commitment. No relationship will last, thrive, or work, if we only take and never give.
Would you treat your relationship with your spouse or kids the way you do with God?

The truth is we do have a choice, but we are choosing the wrong thing when we try to put other things in front of our faith, yet still try to have some of our faith.
Our date book, planners, and calendars will show us what we really choose. That’s scary isn’t it? I’m not advocating giving up our hobbies, quitting our jobs, or taking our children out of extra-curricular activities or never having a social life. I’m suggesting we stop choosing those things over our faith or the faith of our family.

Joshua was simply saying to the Israelites back then, you have a choice, so make a choice! Stop trying to serve them all, you can’t. You have a choice. You can’t serve them all and you can’t have the best of both worlds. Let’s put God first where He belongs and let’s model that to our families, our co-workers, our friends, and those yet to know God, but may because of our choice. Choose the Lord.

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