Updated: Mar 16
We live in a culture that has trained us to ask this simple question, "What do I get out of it?" When we are faced with choices, when we are being asked to sacrifice, when we are asked to give up our desires we usually want to know - "What do I get out of it?". The sad truth is that we have grown up in a society and culture that wants something in return for what it gives. The bottom line is that our culture has influenced us to say, "I'm willing to give something up, but in the end what do I get out of it?". The sad truth is that not only do we find this mindset in people that we expect to find it, but we also find it in the lives of those who call themselves Christ followers.
In our walk with the Father, He sets before us the command to be holy just as He is holy. He challenges us to live lives of integrity, honesty, purity. We come to church and we hear about walking in the Spirit so that we do not fulfill the desires of the flesh. We are challenged to live selfless lives as Christ lived, to die to self and to put others first. We are asked to give of our time, talents and resources. However many of us as believers are still being influenced by our culture and we say to God (maybe not audibly, but in spirit) if I do this and I give up my desires what do I get out of it?
Paul wrote to the believers at Corinth and while sharing with them all that he was dealing with he said this, "For our present troubles are small and won't last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever!" (2 Corinthians 4:17) Paul knew that what he was giving up for the Kingdom would give him something that cannot be bought here on earth. Paul knew that by sacrificing in this life his reward would be greater than anything the world could ever give him.
Today let me ask you this - when asked to give, when asked to go, when asked to sacrifice, when asked to serve do you have the mindset of the culture or of that of a Christ-follower? Are you only interested in doing something for others if you can get something out of it? Is your motive in seeking to be holy only to get something from God now? Let me ask it a different way. When was the last time you served with no expectation of getting anything out of it for yourself?
When you adopt a Biblical mindset you'll find joy in giving of yourself and one day you'll receive a reward greater than anything you can imagine.
Don't forget that Sunday night is a critical business meeting. And by the way, copies of the proposed 2019 budget can be picked up at entrance 2 and the upper lobby if you'd like to see one.
Tonight I'll be teaching on the Ultimate Test - Forgiveness, from the life of Joseph so come out and join the study. Of course we'll have Awana, Student Ministry, Bible studies for men and women as well. It all starts at 6:30 p.m.
One last note of importance, be sure and read the email that we just sent out. We are instituting a new "ministry notification" system whereby Kathy will send out important ministry reminders each week or as needed.