Good reputations are not always good…

Up on your feet! Take a deep breath! Maybe there’s life in you yet.

But I wouldn’t know it by looking at your busywork; nothing of God’s work has been completed. Your condition is desperate.

Think of the gift you once had in your hands, the Message you heard with your ears–grasp it again and turn back to God.

If you pull the covers back over your head and sleep on, oblivious to God, I’ll return when you least expect it, break into your life like a thief in the night.

Just had to share that neat quote from The Message, Revelation 3:2-3, which I came across in the sermon yesterday. As the pastor said about churches, “The minute we say, we got this, and stop watching carefully, the devil is scaling the walls.

I know the feeling of being defensive about my (former) church, and the temptation to be proud of it. Not that there isn’t a good way to be proud. And there are always people to answer, who are good at finding things to complain about; but the pastor giving gentle warnings is not one of those!

Like we’ve said before, it’s so easy for well-intentioned people to get so involved in “doing good” (“busywork”), that they’ve forgotten to check if that good is actually the right thing–what God has led them to do.

Our new church has a lot of programs going, but I do see a lot of prayer going on at the same time; and they are careful to keep a “grasp” on that Message/the Bible. So that’s great! But I can also see a temptation to be too proud of their history, both past and present. Like the church in Sardis, who had a good reputation but had been lulled to sleep. Imagine, being so busy, and yet “dead” at the same time!

Solution: like it says in the quote, they needed to “grasp again” the Message. To be filled with Life, be filled with Jesus–and scripture is where you learn more of him.

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