The Christian life demands that we “prepare” by allowing God’s Word to transform the way we think. It is the equivalent of watching “game film” so one can analyze his own play, as well as understand the opponent. It is greatly rewarding as well as greatly humbling. It teaches, corrects, etc. The Scriptures make the promise of Itself to do these very things (see 2 Timothy 3:16-17) in order to help us have victory in the “game of life.”
Yet an athlete does not just watch game film. There has to be the “perspiration” mentioned in the opening statement. There has to be an application of the knowledge – which requires time and energy – which leads to perspiration.
Church I feel we spend time with the “game film” but way too little time with the perspiration of applying it. We are much like the Dead Sea. We have a live flow of water coming in but no outward flow – resulting in stagnation and death.
The typical response I get to this involves all the programs a church has for “outreach.” Yet that is not exactly what I am talking about. I am talking to us as individuals. Are we involved in other’s lives? Do we consider others as more important than ourselves? I am not asking if we have a scheduled time on our planners to “serve” and then feel good about ourselves. I am asking us to truly, daily exercise the mandates of Scripture to serve others!
My favorite basketball trainer is a guy named Jason Otter. He is phenomenal and worth every penny that people schedule with him for training. He often reminds players that they ultimately don’t need to pay trainers but instead need a personal work ethic that becomes part of their daily routines. Great players are not those that get occasional training, but those that have the game envelope their lives.
I am not opposed to church programs, I run some. But I am opposed to saying that is what being a servant looks like. You don’t schedule being a servant. Servanthood is an attitude created through the study of the Word, which transforms our minds to consider others as more important than self, which leads to a sacrifice of time and perspiration.
If we only worry about meeting needs when it is scheduled and we are delirious to other’s needs when it involves a loss of personal time, then I propose we are simply not being transformed by the Word. Transformation will result in perspiration/service.
Are you willing to be inconvenienced by others? Are you willing to not do something you planned to serve someone else?
We need to make sure that we are not just watching “Game Film” but also then stepping out onto the “court” in order to put forth the sweat of applying that knowledge to the “game.”
See - Mark 10:45, 1 Corinthians 9:19, 1 John 3:17-18