Skip to main content

"Pretty good"

"Give yourselves to disciplined instruction, open your ears to tested knowledge." (Proverbs 23:12)

One of the easiest things for many of us to do is to believe what we are told or taught without ever seeking to validate the knowledge shared. As a believer in Christ, we have an obligation to avoid blind belief in everything we are taught or are exposed to over the course of our lives. There is an expectation that we will apply ourselves to learning - active, involved, frequent and committed study of the Scriptures. As believers, we should offer words of wisdom, thoughts that challenge each other to grow, and even subtle humor that draws us closer together in the Lord - thereby applying what it is we are being taught.

Disciplined instruction is characterized by that which produces development of self-control (something I lack more than I'd like to admit), obedient actions (also not a consistent thing in my life), and orderly conduct (well, might as well confess to all three). We often "bristle against" anything that smacks of discipline or obedience because it rubs us the wrong way - it is going to "cost us" something and that makes it challenging. It challenges us and often requires that dreaded thing: "change". For many of us, nothing challenges us more than being called upon to actually change - after all, most of us see ourselves as 'pretty good' individuals. "Pretty good" isn't really good enough if we are to examine ourselves through God's eyes, though.

God expects that we will be open to the correction that he identifies as necessary in our lives as we apply ourselves to gaining that deep, intense spiritual knowledge he desires to share with us. Study of the scriptures can be a difficult pursuit for even the best scholar, but nothing pleases the Lord more than to see us delve in, even if we don't always "get it" as we are reading it through the first time.  We are each given a tutor to take us verse by verse through these 66 books known as the Holy Bible. He is the Holy Spirit and he is an awesome teacher - all he needs is attentive and responsive students.

As truth is revealed in the Word by the Holy Spirit, course correction will inevitably be called for in our lives. The simple truth is that none of us "lines up" to the characteristics of a righteous, obedient servant of Christ 100% of the time - we are 'pretty good', but not 'all the way good'. We struggle with ALWAYS being honest, ALWAYS being kind, ALWAYS being loving, and the list could go on. God not only asks that we are disciplined in exploring what he has for us in his Word, the Bible, but that we examine the knowledge we receive, putting it to use in our lives on a daily basis. Knowledge applied is powerful - bringing change, release, and honest transformation of character - moving us from 'pretty good' to 'all good'. Just sayin!

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

What did obedience cost Mary and Joseph?

As we have looked at the birth of Christ, we have considered the fact he was born of a virgin, with an earthly father so willing to honor God with his life that he married a woman who was already pregnant.  In that day and time, a very taboo thing.  We also saw how the mother of Christ was chosen by God and given the dramatic news that she would carry the Son of God.  Imagine her awe, but also see her tremendous amount of fear as she would have received this announcement, knowing all she knew about the time in which she lived about how a woman out of wedlock showing up pregnant would be treated.  We also explored the lowly birth of Jesus in a stable of sorts, surrounded by animals, visited by shepherds, and then honored by magi from afar.  The announcement of his birth was by angels - start to finish.  Mary heard from an angel (a messenger from God), while Joseph was set at ease by a messenger from God on another occasion - assuring him the thing he was about to do in marrying Mary wa

The bobby pin in the electrical socket does what???

Avoidance is the act of staying away from something - usually because it brings some kind of negative effect into your life.  For example, if you are a diabetic, you avoid the intake of high quantities of simple sugars because they bring the negative effect of elevating your blood glucose to unhealthy levels.  If you were like me as a kid, listening to mom and dad tell you the electrical outlets were actually dangerous didn't matter all that much until you put the bobby pin into the tiny slots and felt that jolt of electric current course through your body! At that point, you recognized electricity as having a "dangerous" side to it - it produces negative effects when embraced in a wrong manner.  Both of these are good things, when used correctly.  Sugar has a benefit of producing energy within our cells, but an over-abundance of it will have a bad effect.  Electricity lights our path and keeps us warm on cold nights, but not contained as it should be and it can produce

Gateway closed, ears open, heart ready

We can certainly hear a lot of voices today - each representing some "cause" or "purpose" we are supposed to get our lives behind. Some are reasonable and seem to catch our attention simply because what they present seems both logical and straight-forward. Other voices are not as forth-coming in their motives, oftentimes not very logical and definitely not telling you the whole story. They simply use a technique that manipulates the crowds until they have them to the place we might call "biting on the bait". Our mailboxes are inundated with this request for "charitable contribution" one right after another; get this product now; attend this seminar to get rich quick; and get these veneers put on your teeth to change the way people perceive you. Lots of voices demanding our attention, but do we recognize its source? Jesus was most concerned with the repetitive 'voices' and 'demands' our world puts out there over and over again - vo