What Do I Have to Do?

In discussing my post last week about our responsibility in sharing Jesus with others, I began to think more about the idea of excuses and then began to think more about how we approach living out our faith.

Often we are happy to let someone else do things so that we don’t have to.

My friend indicated that sometimes folks will respond to a statement like, “You don’t have to lead someone to pray to receive Christ” as an excuse to pass the responsibility off to someone else – a pastor or evangelist.

If you read my post, I hope that you saw that I wasn’t saying that ‘it’s someone else’s job so you don’t have to be concerned about it.’

Every follower of Jesus has an important part to to play in showing God’s love to those around them and being ready to talk about Jesus – is the scriptures I quoted there make clear.

They key word that I was trying to get at is ‘part.’

It’s not all on you.

And yet it’s not off you.

It’s on us.

That’s the point.

What I really want to talk about for a minute today is a question of perspective.

Sometimes people have the perspective of ‘What do I have to do?”   What’s the least that I can get away with and still be ‘okay?’

As if to say, if I can pass something off I’ll be glad to.

What’s the least that I have to do to get most of the benefits?

IF this is the issue, it’s a deeper issue that who’s responsible for what.

It gets to what I believe is the deepest problem in the wider North American church today.

Sometimes we call them ‘consumer Christians.’  People who want the comfort and benefits of the Christian life and church ministry with as little accompanying discomfort and cost as possible.

This topic could be a whole series of books, but I graciously assume something different for my blog readership here.

If you read my blogs, I can only assume it’s because you’re interested in exploring with me what it means to be a disciple of Jesus.

Disciples of Jesus don’t do continual cost benefit analyses on what God calls them to do.

We realize that we are involved in some way in almost everything of significance to the life of faith that we share.

We ought not to ask, “What Do I have to do.” but rather, “Lord, what do you want me to do?”

Disciples of Jesus take seriously the transformed way of life that he calls us to.

We seek to obey everything he’s commanded of us.

But – and this is really important – we don’t add to that.

We don’t create expectations beyond what Jesus does.

We don’t induce guilt over things that Jesus has not commanded us to do.

And yet sometimes Christian leaders do just that.

This blog – and my ministry overall – attempts to look fresh into the Bible to separate what we’ve been told by our Christian leaders and culture from what Jesus actually commands and expects from us.

And remember, Jesus promises that he will give us rest.  His burden is light.

We don’t need a list of things to do in order to to be ‘right with God’

We can rest in his love.  We don’t have to earn anything.

But it’s imperative that we allow his love to transform us and direct our lives.

 

Author: Dan Masshardt

Husband, Father, Pastor...

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