Radical: Spirituality! Part 2

Welcome back to Episode 2 of True Spirituality.  Remember that True Spirituality Is Not Determined By How You Act In Church, But By How You Treat Other People.  There are 3 key components to this and let’s get to the first one:

 1.  True Spirituality Is Evidenced By Love.

If you want to become spiritual, there are a number of things you must master in your personal life.

  1. We Need To Be Committed To The Goal Of Spirituality. We need to be able to say, “I’m not going to let the world, or sin, or traditions, or money, or enemies, or friends, or family stand in the way of my becoming close to God.”
  2. We Also Need To Be Disciplined. We need to be able to govern ourselves and force ourselves at times to do what we don’t necessarily feel like doing, and, at times, not do what we really feel most like doing.
  3. We Also Need To Be Consistent. We need to make a regular habit of prayer, Bible study, worship, and service to God.  These things can’t be done in a half-hearted when I feel like it fashion.

As important as these habits are, Paul tells us they are not really the key to spirituality.  It’s Not Enough To Accumulate Knowledge, Or Be Disciplined, Or Be Committed.  There is something much more important than any of these.  You Must Develop A Heart Full Of Love.  Look at the latter half of verse 1:  “while knowledge makes us feel important, it is love that strengthens the church.”  And he follows this up later with the most famous passage of all in 1 Corinthians, chapter 13—The Love Chapter.

If I could speak all the languages of earth and of angels, but didn’t love others, I would only be a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.  If I had the gift of prophecy, and if I understood all of God’s secret plans and possessed all knowledge, and if I had such faith that I could move mountains, but didn’t love others, I would be nothing.  If I gave everything I have to the poor and even sacrificed my body, I could boast about it; but if I didn’t love others, I would have gained nothing.

Love is the primary component of the Christian life.  This is the key to growing God’s Kingdom “People Don’t Care How Much You Know, They Want To Know How Much You Care.”  Have you ever wondered why your friends who are not Christians (hopefully you have some of these, if not, “Shame on you!”) never ask you about your faith?  Well, it may be that they sense in you that all you will talk about is WHAT you know.  Quite frankly, they do not need to know what you know.  They need the WHO, not the WHAT!  If all you talk about is The What, then it is clear that you are unclear about The WHO!

God has a primary concern about you once you decide to follow Jesus.  His primary concern for your spiritual growth is not how much you know, But How Much You Love Those Created In His Image.  When you stand before the throne on judgment day, He won’t say, “Wow! You really knew the Greek.” Or…”Wow! You could argue the authorship of Isaiah with the best of them.” Or…”Wow! You sat in the same pew every Sunday for 57 years.”  Those aren’t the things God is looking for.  He wants you to develop a heart full of love towards others and towards Him. True spirituality isn’t measured merely by how good you are, but by how good you are to others.  And this is measured by how well we love.  If you have been reading me for any time, you know what’s coming next…

Love God with all your heart.  Love others the way Jesus loves you.  And make sure all the glory goes to Him.

Tomorrow we will look at the next component of True Spirituality.

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2 thoughts on “Radical: Spirituality! Part 2

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  1. Pastor Randy,

    I think I am getting tired. A little burnout, as they say. What’s the use?

    The older I get, the more I realize how futile everything I think, feel, and do is… how little “difference” it makes. In the end, I lived for Jesus and it just make me a jerk.

    On the other hand, I could have tried harder to be more NICE. A NICE preacher can lead one of the biggest TV churches in the world and never let on the slightest hint that the authorship of Isaiah bears any importance on anything. Might go so far overboard being nice to homosexuals that he betrays his own marriage just to be accepting and affirming.

    Probably there is a sermon that irons that out neatly too. But I am thinking how I could probably just lay down and sleep through it though. I am tired… of it.

    Seems like I was supposed to be part of a team. Wonder where everyone went….

    Any thoughts before I drift away?

    X

    Liked by 1 person

    1. There have been times, many times when I shared those same feelings. In fact, there are times right now when I join you under the Juniper Tree. Here’s 2 things I have done, and am continuing to do now as I offer myself as God’s agent for change where I serve.

      First, I am reminded of Elijah, hence the reference to the Juniper Tree. Like you and I, he felt alone and felt his mission for God was fruitless. But there were over 500 who did not bow the knee to Baal. Even though he could not see it, his life was making a difference. Then God wasn’t finished with Elijah. He had another task for him–to anoint Elisha to continue what he had started.

      Then I am reminded of Job. One of the most IMPATIENT people ever. I share that gene with Job. Even though Job felt abandoned, even angry at God, (don’t know if you are or ever have been mad at God, but I have and at times still am), still Job longed for God’s presence. Even though he thought he wanted a WWE type smackdown with God, he still longed for God. Everything inside of Job was screaming let go of God, but Job refused.

      Finally, pray for me that I don’t give up on that God Sized Dream. Knowing that I am being prayed for by someone sitting next to me under the Juniper Tree, well, that is in an odd way, empowering to me. And I will pray for you, too. Remember Elijah didn’t remain under the Juniper Tree. God called him to Horeb, and He is calling you and I to our Horeb.

      It may not seem like you and I are changing the world, but be confident we are changing someone, even if we cannot see it.

      Liked by 1 person

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