“If I Had It My Way” Friday
July 10, 2015
Every week I come across articles that I wish every member of The Church at West Franklin would read. They include articles that teach, encourage, challenge, and help as Christ-followers. So, instead of thinking "I wish I could get the members to read this" I am going to post my weekly favorites to this site on Fridays. In other words, "If I had it my way, West Franklin peeps would read these." Thus the title "'If I Had It My Way' Friday." Consider Friday a day to come and get some pastoral (web) recommendations on what I believe will help you in your walk with Christ.
Identity in Spirituality by Paul David Tripp
Brothers and sisters, could it be that although we're heavily active in church, we're doing it out of a sense of duty instead of with a willing, loving and worshipful heart? Might it be that in what we say we do for God, we actually do for ourselves and our own misplaced personal identity?
Here's what you need to ask yourself: "Do I live today like I need Christ’s grace as much as the first day I believed?" Or is there evidence of a cold-hearted, duty-bound relationship to religion? It's a hard pill to swallow when you find out that you've left a Pharisee's legacy, but God will transform us, even when we don't think we need his grace.
I so desperately wanted it to be ok. I wanted the Bible to say it was ok, so I looked for those who argued that it did. I read articles and books about the Greek being mistranslated and passages being taken out of context, but as much as I wanted them to be the answer, I knew enough about how to read my Bible on its own grounds that I was hard to convince. And even if I could concede on all the other instances where the Scriptures speak on the issue, there was one passage I couldn’t get around no matter how hard I tried: Romans 1.
It haunted me, this passage where Paul, talking about the depravity of all men, uses an illustration of how distorted worship (worshipping created things rather than the Creator) leads to all sorts of sin, but as a vivid picture of that distorted orientation, he uses the one that is most contrary to nature (homosexuality). I wished Paul had left it out, but he hadn’t. God had very clearly spoken.
My hardened heart wasn’t so hard that I couldn’t sense that I was in dangerous territory. His logic proved true—I had been worshipping her instead of God for a long time. It was subtle at first, then overt. Sure, our friendship had started out as one that honored God. Did I mention that we met on a mission trip?—but in the end, it had become the devil’s play thing.
How Can Parents Minister to Their Child Who Is Same-Sex Attracted? A Q & A video by Sam Allberry