As I understand the commission from the Lord Jesus to the church, i.e., born again Christians, it orders believers to witness to the world at large. One of the tools involved in this venture is to demonstrate a better life, and while doing this, to refuse to become stuck on ourselves and our own idea of just how wonderful we are.
Charles Caleb Colton was one of the most prolific clergymen in the Church of England in the early 19th Century. His pithy sayings fill tomes. When he was aged he was facing serious surgery and refused to go through with it. His strange option was suicide. Please understand I am not condemning Mr. Colton, merely reporting the facts. One of his most insightful sayings stands in stark contrast to his final act.
Living, with faith in the most unspeakable circumstances, is part and parcel of a Christians earthly walk. Paul, praising Jesus while living in a dank prison cell awaiting the removal of his head. John, living as a conqueror while a barefoot and naked slave on the Isle of Patmos and writing the book of Revelation. One of the great Christian writers summed it with this.
“God had one son on earth without sin, but never one without suffering.” Aurelius Augustinus.
We learn that our suffering is not going unnoticed in heaven, and that lost loved ones, as well as the world at large, take notice of the nature of our response to the suffering that enters our life with permission from God. (Book of Job).
Now, notice the irony in Reverend Colton’s demise and this powerful and true statement, a statement that encapsulates the main ideas of why the Church is by and large failing to convert the world.
“Men will wrangle for religion, write for it, fight for it, die for it; anything but live for it.”
Charles Caleb Colton.
The power part of Colton’s statement, “anything but live for it.”
In 1970 Lynn Anderson debuted her signature song with the opening lines by Joe South, a take-off of the 1964 novel by Hannah Green. The line goes, “I beg your pardon, I never promised you a rose garden.”
If we would actually read the New Testament we would discover that Jesus never promised us a rose garden here below, but quite the opposite as demonstrated by the early believers.
Copyright © 2016 Larry Lilly
It work Master Oral Deckard_