I understand and heartily applaud the motive and the heart of the individual who wrote the “slogan” on the board Sunday morning. However, I feel it necessary to point out the inherent danger reflected by its wording.
“I will do more in ‘94”
This sounds so good and it seems to be an admirable goal – but, I cannot but feel uncomfortable with anything which seems to indicate that an individual, by gathering will and mustering determination, can accomplish anything of the slightest import – nor do I think it unscriptural to point out a caution to speak in such a manner:
“Come now, you who say, ‘Today or tomorrow, we shall go to such and such a city, and spend a year there and engage in business and make a profit.’ Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow. You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away.
Instead, you ought to say, ‘If the Lord will, we shall live and also do this or that.’ But as it is, you boast in your arrogance; all such boasting is evil.” (James 4:13-16)
Would it not be far better to adopt as a slogan a statement that includes God as the source of our ability or the object of our focus.
Anytime someone says, “It is not my intention . . .”, it normally prefaces a statement which does exactly what they state is not their intention; but, it is not my intention to be nit-picking. I have been strongly convicted as of late of the emphasis within people who claim to belong to God to “cut God out” of not only the glory which is rightfully His, but also the place He occupies and the empowerment that He alone can give. Until we can begin to have some slight understanding of the flesh without God, we will not be able to begin to grasp the consistent need for us as stiff-necked and uncircumcised of heart to bow before the awesomeness of God and stop claiming the ability to function independently of our Maker.
If our words reflect our hearts, then I think it would well behoove us to begin giving God His place in our words and hope the process would infect our hearts as well.
There is a fine line between the practice of humanism and Christianity and sometimes, I think, we unconsciously vacillate between the two – I know I cross that line frequently without being aware of it.
I pray that God may so sensitize our hearts that
we will feel the “grieving of the Holy Spirit”
when we proclaim ˆour successes and
fail to give credit where credit is due –
when we forget the Source of power –
when we are puffed up
with our own intelligence and accomplishments
and cannot find the heart to humble before the Lord.
January 4, 1994