10 September, 2005

On Being Real

In a previous post I talked about "being real". In that I was talking about being who you are without having to wear masks or trying to be something that you are not to please others or to fit in. I stand by that, and I am thankful that the church I pastor is a very accepting congregation, yet at the same time, something has been nagging at me since yesterday, and today it kind of came together for me. The problem is that "being real" is a two way street. While we can be real with others as to who we are and where we come from and so on, we also need to "be real" with the world and letting them know where we stand with Christ.

This moring in my devotions, I read the following verses found in Ezekiel 33:31-32:
"My people... listen to your words, but they do not put them into practice.
With their mouths they express devotion, but their hearts are greedy for unjust gain.
Indeed, to them you are nothing more than one who sings love songs with a beautiful voice and plays and instrument well, for they hear your words but do not put them into practice."

Wow! That is a heavy statement and indictment!
This passage causes us to ask ourselves, "Am I a real Christian, or one who claims to love God but never acts on that love?"
We must ask ourselves, "Am I obeying God's Word, or do I listen to it, but not live by it?" For many people, it is obvious that they would fit in with the group that Ezekiel writes about. He says of these people that something other than God is first in their hearts. They listen to Him and yet treat him as a singer with a wonderful voice and they love to hear, but nothing in their life is changed. Instead we should realize that he is the all knowing, all powerful, Holy One who has words of which we can live by!

One thing I have come to realize over the years is that the people around you, the ones you work with, play with, those you live and associate with... they know the real you and they can tell which type Christian you really are. These people can identify the "entertainment Chrisitans" who are in it just for the fun and appearance, from the ones who really mean it. The unbelievers usually don't give the less serious church goers as much grief as they do the committed ones, but believe me, when they find themselves in a bad situation and need help or prayer; it is not the "entertainment Christian" that they seek out! When they need to know about God, they will seek out a "real" Christian.

I don't know about you, but I don't want to be entertained, and neither do I want to be an entertainer, but I want to be committed to Christ in all I do.


Roughrider said...

Jesus always cut to the quick. He asked, "Why do you call me Lord and don't do what I say?"
I have that verse penned in the front of me favorite Bible jsut to remind me that I minister the kingdom of God, not my own agenda. Begin real before God means accepting Him Word, His will, and His ways. Then living a lifestyle openly and clearly that exemplifies that. Why is that so easy to write, but so challenging to make a reality in our own lives. Now where's my favorite Bible.

Fidget said...

Thanks for the scripture, pastor. We all need to be reminded of God's direction and intention (especially on a monday morning)!