Christian Web Site      
Powered by
Google

Search WWW Search surfinthespirit.com
 
  Found!Sunday, June 25th, 2017  
by Phil Ware

The sky is gray and wet. The wind is blowing from the North. It's going to be a cold and damp day. I slip on my America's Cup jacket and zip it up. It feels especially good to me this morning. Not only is it warm and comfortable, it's newly found!
My friends, you are spiritual. So if someone is trapped in sin, you gently lead that person back to the right path. But watch out, and don't be tempted yourself. You obey the law of Christ when you offer each other a helping hand. Galatians 6:1-2
Somewhere in the middle of a wild Friday night of multiple basketball games and working the concession stand, I had misplaced my jacket. When I left, I didn't realize it was gone. The next morning, however, it wasn't where I expected it to be and I panicked! This wonderful gift is more than a coat; it's a treasure.
Suppose a woman has ten valuable silver coins and loses one. Won't she light a lamp and look in every corner of the house and sweep every nook and cranny until she finds it?" Luke 15:8
I was frantic. I searched all of our closets. I checked the cars. I mentally retraced my steps as I thought about where I had worn it last. Then it clicked. I seized the very first opportunity to check on my lost coat's whereabouts. BINGO! It was there. Am I sure relieved! So now today, my jacket feels especially warm and comfy!
My dear friends, if you know people who have wandered off from God's truth, don't write them off. Go after them. Get them back and you will have rescued precious lives from destruction and prevented and epidemic of wandering away from God. James 5:19-20 (The Message)
Finding what is lost, misplaced, or missed is part of our everyday life, except unfortunately, in most churches. As congregations have grown larger, conversion and faith more individualistic, and culture has encouraged us to be more private and withdrawn, people wander in and out of churches with little notice. Often times they don't leave for other churches, they just leave. They're gone and nothing is done to reclaim them. In fact, their absence isn't even noticed most of the time!
Show mercy to those whose faith is wavering. Rescue others by snatching them from the flames of judgment. There are still others to whom you need to show mercy, but be careful that you are not contaminated by their sins. Jude 22-23
Jesus made clear that this was a major concern of God. While so often Jesus' parables of the lost sheep, the lost coin, and the lost son (see Luke 15) are used to refer to those who have never come to Christ, if you listen to the stories, they're really about those who were once a part of the flock, the home, and the family that get lost. Several of the New Testament writers, inspired by the Spirit of God, remind us that this should be a major concern for us in God's family. Bottom line, God wants us to be cleansed, re-made, and empowered inside out and out. He doesn't want us to settle for car wash Christianity when transformational Christianity, Spirit-led and Spirit-empowered Christianity are ours. Let's not sell ourselves short on this matter. Let's ask God to cleanse us and empower us thoroughly!
You should therefore be most careful, my brothers, that there should not be in any of you that wickedness of heart which refuses to trust, and deserts the cause of the living God. Help one another to stand firm in the faith every day, while it is still called "today," and beware that none of you becomes deaf and blind to God through the delusive glamour of sin. Hebrews 3:12-13
Our congregation is making a special effort to recalibrate our focus to be more like Jesus, who always put people first. Only his Father's will meant more to Jesus than the individual people to whom he ministered and longed to minister. I hope that we can be better at noticing when someone is missing, then go find that person and bring him or her back. As I read the Scriptures, several parts of this process are crucial.
  1. Community
    We must have a relationship with each other that lets us know each other and our needs. That means that many of our churches need to have house-to-house meetings like the early church did (See Acts 2: 46; 20:20; cf. Romans 16:3-5; Philemon 2) in addition to our larger church assemblies. Much of the New Testament teaching focuses on "one another" issues. That means we must build "one another" communities so that when someone is missing, we know it.


  2. Concern
    When someone is missing or lost to us, our concern must lead us to action. Praying for missing people is great, even crucial, but we must also actively search for them. Celebration
    When someone comes back that has been away, has been lost from the family, we want to celebrate their return! Each person is precious to God and they should be to us. Their return to our family life is a time of joy.
    (Luke 15:6-7, 9-10, 22-24, 32)


  3. Commitment
    It is not just the person who returns that needs to recommit himself or herself to the work of the Lord; it is also our need. We want to offer encouragement and support for our returning brother or sister to help that person know that we love, appreciate, and need them as part of our family. (Hebrews 3:12-14; 10:19-25)
I'm not sure what your area of giftedness in the family of God is, but I do know that it is all of our responsibility to reach out to those among us who are struggling, vulnerable, weak, discouraged, or broken. Let's add to that list, those who are missing!
"What do you think? If a man owns a hundred sheep, and one of them wanders away, will he not leave the ninety-nine on the hills and go to look for the one that wandered off? ... In the same way your Father in heaven is not willing that any of these little ones should be lost." Matthew 18:12-14
Copyright ©1996-2001, Heartlight, Inc., 8332 Mesa Drive, Austin, TX 78759. May be reprinted and reused for non-commercial purposes only if copyright credits are appropriately displayed.



Site copyright© 2002-2017, Surf-in-the-Spirit. All rights reserved.

  Christian Church Life Navigation

    Church Attendance
    Dear Church Member
    I Am A Christian Woman
    The Empty Pew
    Does Anyone Recognize Me?
    I Am Your Church
    The Value Of One Member
    Used To Go To Church
    Our Church Is Closing
    Just a Bunch of Hypocrites
    The Church Growth Fallacy
    The Preacher
    The Church Wherein


Sunday, The Day of Rest
Reverence In Worship
Pillar And Ground Of Truth
Let Brotherly Love Continue
Too Close To Cough
Twelve String Blues
The Church's Main Point
Worship With Angels
Entertain Or Teach
Caught!
Want To Go To Church
Car Wash Christianity

How To Kill-Lose-Help
Children's Worship
Too Many Hot Dog Eaters
Serve Or Be Served
Personal Work
Ethics In Ministry
A Crisis In Preaching?
The Church Is A Witness
Caring Ministries
Newcomers
Getting Men Involved
Found!



What's Happening
Church Fundraisers
Have To Join A Church?
Bulletin Bloopers
Did You See Jesus
Healthy Churches Grow
A Place of Belonging
The Church Is Not...
Catching The Vision
How Much Is He Worth?
Christian Fellowship
Meet The Minister
Resources For Ministers

  Choose A Topic

    Advice For Christians
    Read The Bible Online
    Work And Business
    Christian Charity
    Church Life

Christian Education
Entertainment
Your Environment
Your Finances
Healthy Living

Christian Home
Christian Music
Parenting
Spirituality
You And The Web

Christian Art And Literature
Just For Teens
Just For Kids
Family Fun
Christian Webmasters

  Other Resources Section


blog

Christian consolidation debt

garcinia cambogia pure extract

How To Lose Weight Fast

Drops Hcg

               © 2001-2017 SurfintheSpirit.com  All rights reserved.