Archive for the ‘Distinctive’ Category

To divide something is not necessarily difficult. It’s easy with numbers, but when it involves the heavy stuff of living like God wants…well let’s just say, it’s gonna test everything in you.

Take Psalm 86:1-11 for instance. David recognized his poor and needy heart even while working at getting it right with God. He really trusted God, talked regularly with Him and believed God was listening to him. He even concluded in verse 10 that God alone was God. But in verse 11 David asked for the unthinkable- “…give me an undivided heart.”

What really proves that you have an undivided heart? Is it that you block out a couple of hours on Sunday for God time? Or how about opening the Bible at least twice last week?

WHAT THIS MEANS: What focus in your life would your friends say is the “real you?” What do you talk about more than anything? What do you think about when you jump in bed or crawl out?

DISCIPLESHIP THOUGHT: Becoming a maturing disciple is accomplished only by relentlessly eliminating distractions that trap us in mediocrity. Check Haggai 1:7 “…Take a good. hard look at your life, think it over.” Message translation.

We’ve all been part of  conversations  that never go anywhere, don’t resolve differences, often leave us frustrated, angry or confused. Many topics discussed are easily forgotten.

But a few conversations, statements made or questions asked remain in our thinking in a way that distracts us from thinking about anything else. We simply can’t get it out of our mind. Frances Chan made one of those recently-“As you get older, don’t buy more stuff for yourself, go out with a bang.” I will process that one for a while.

Another conversation I had contained this challenging question “Would you like sugar with that?” Guess how long I stayed up thinking about that one?

Jesus had some almost scary one liners. Check out some in Matthew 8-9. “Follow me and let the dead bury their own dead.” “You of little faith, why are you afraid?” “Do you believe I am able to do this?” How about “Why do you call me Lord and not do what I say?”

WHAT THIS MEANS: Examine your conversations this week. Do they provoke a deeper thinking in anyone? Get together with a few others and discuss how you were or were not challenged in some of your conversations. Why would you fear having one or two significant conversations with someone?

Occasionally I see an old VW Camper like the one I used to drive. It is very distinctive and is not seen very often because most people trade their car for another one every 5 years or so. It definitely stands out as something we may long for but the new technology invented almost daily steals away our longing to drive such a distinctive vehicle without the newest technology.

Jesus and a true follower are also distinctive today. Colossians 2:8 speaks loudly that we are to be alert to not being taken captive by the empty and misguided data we are fed today. So much sounds right and good but this is a reason we must know what God says about life and what really matters.

An alive relationship with God where we really do hear him tell us how to live from his perspective is so refreshing but contrary to most of what vies for our attention.

What keeps you from standing out from others when you know what God expects of you? How can you begin to live more distinctively in the cultures that speak a language other than what God says in the Word?