Posted by: Don Linnen | 30 June 2013

Comfort: Not Guaranteed

The countdown is on. Highland Park Presbyterian Church has but four Sundays left for the Reverend Doctor Ron Scates to preach. Some rejoice at his departure. The vast majority will miss him.  I’m in the latter group.

Ron’s a friend who can really make me feel uncomfortable – in the most loving way. In today’s sermon he asked if I was willing to take a good friend on a tour of my home. Am I willing to let him or her look in every room, every closet, every part of my messy garage?

Yeah. Probably. If it’s a really good friend. Our house is comfortable and our active lives are not focused on creating a model home.

Then came Ron’s follow-up question: am I willing to take Jesus on a tour of my heart?

Yeah. But. Wait a minute. Everywhere in my heart?? Now I start to squirm in my seat. (This may be why some will be happy to see Ron go.)

The real question: is my heart filled with works of the flesh or fruit of the Spirit?

A heart filled with works of the flesh implies the presence of one or more of some very common traits: sexual immorality, impurity, idolatry, hostility, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, and other not-so-flattering things. See the whole disturbing list in Galations 5.

A heart filled with fruit of the Spirit means you have some less common traits: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control.

Hmmm. I gotta say I still have too much flesh and too little fruit. Then again it takes very little of the bad stuff to spoil a whole lot of the good stuff.

You don’t have to be a Christian to increase your fruit supply. But if you’re not a believer, it sure is easy to seek comfort with anyone at any cost. Then you can just blow off any request to give a tour of your home OR your heart.

Comfort is not guaranteed for Christians. Giving it up is not a bad trade off if you can load up on fruit.

 

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