When does growing up stop becoming daunting? To me, it felt like the first time I signed my name to the first college payment my childhood was over. I’m becoming a self-sustaining grown man now. I know my family is behind me and is always there if I need them, but I’m growing up now. I’m becoming my own person. I’m noticing differences in opinions, I’m feeling pressure from others, and I’m having to draw a definitive line in the sand as to who I am. And it seems like all of this is happening in a matter of three months. It’s crazy.
However, throughout the head long plunge into adulthood that is happening this summer, By God’s grace I’m starting to see that God has taught me a multitude of things that I can take away for the rest of my life. In sharing these, I hope that I can impart a bit of wisdom that someone can be graced by so that they may see the glory of God, even if just a bit more.
- We can study God’s letters all we want. We can look them up and down, be familiar with every clause and doctrine the letter has to offer, but if we don’t DO what the letter says, we are missing the point.
Deep theology is wonderful. It helps you begin to understand the being of God and the nature of his character. It is something that I thoroughly believe is being overlooked by many 21st century churches, but is not the main focus of Christianity. Christ is! Calvinist or Arminian, whether you believe in pre or post tribulation, those are all issues that are outside the gospel. The purpose, the overarching purpose of Christianity, is to proclaim the name of Christ. Not promote some belief that we don’t even fully understand.When God tells us to do something, don’t look first at the theological implications, do what the word of God says.
- Sharing the Gospel is a two-fold process: Living it AND sharing it. You can’t have one without the other.
I hate the phrase “You may be the only Jesus anyone sees”. sadly, if they were to look at me as Jesus, they’d see a cynical, sarcastic, obnoxious Jesus who doesn’t know when to shut his mouth or walk away. That’s not the jesus of the Bible. The Jesus of the Bible loves all and his arms are open for all who come to him and call on his name, and is on a mission to redeem the world. However, if you live your life in a way that shows no evidence of Christ, how will anyone take you seriously? Would YOU, o Christian, listen to a person who claims to be an expert mechanic, but didn’t know the difference between a v6 and a v12 engine? It’s important to establish yourself in a way that says “Hey, I’m no better than you, but because of Jesus, He causes me to live my life differently. Im flawed and broken like you, but I have a redeemer whom I serve that is changing me into his image every day.”
- Not all people share the same views as you…on anything. And that’s ok. The important thing though, is to know the time to disagree, and the time to let it go.
Even among our closest group of friends, there are differences in opinions. And it’s ok to press on, argue, debate, and get feisty. It’s healthy and helps you better understand what you believe. But there’s a point to say “no”. Where you realize that this isn’t going to go anywhere good, and it’s better just to end it there. Or when you are confronted into a debate, and it’s better to not take part of it, as to not discourage those around you. 1 Corinthians 8 tells us that what ever knowledge we THINK we have, we don’t. Sometimes avoiding a “Christian Talk” is the best christian talk that you can do.
- True friendship knows not distance. It simply knows that true companionship is something that needs be cherished.
Out of my five closest friends, I only see two on a weekly basis. The others I talk with solely through text and video chat. And that doesn’t matter. True friendship has no bounds. It doesn’t matter if you’re two miles away or 2000. If your friendship is true and real, It presses on. It lives on in spite of distance. It is a gift from God that is one of the sweetest things we can experience on earth.
- Life is full of change. Circumstances change. Things happen. God is in control.
Sometimes things happen in our lives that we don’t know how we ever get through. We see a whole relationship change in an instant. We see a life as we know it ending. When these things happen, it truly is scary. Its terrifying. When we try to adjust to the change and embrace it, we don’t know what to do. Life seems to be pressing restart and we are starting at square one. There’s no point in staying where we are. God has a plan set in stone for us, and by the world’s standards it may be absolutely terrible. Nevertheless, it’s the plan God has for us, so let’s run headlong into his grace filled arms. We are all stories in the end anyway, so let’s make it a good one.