Should I ………?

Should I say this?  Should I do this? Should I post this? Should I __________? (you fill in the blank). I wonder if we ask ourselves this question enough? Often we say things, do things, and yes even post things within the social media universe before we give little to any thought as to whether we should. This “shooting from the hip” mentality has steadily become more and more of an issue within recent years. We have such a sense of freedom when it comes to what we say and do, especially when it comes to what we let fly out there for all to see.  After all, we’ve got freedom of speech, right?

As we look back through just the past 30 years or so, it is easy to notice the avenues of expressing oneself have exploded by leaps and bounds. It’s really quite amazing if you think about it. We’ve gone from being able to communicate with one another from home telephones to cellular phones, from snail mail to email and text messaging. In addition, we also now have a tremendous variety of options to express thoughts and emotions with many, many others through internet mediums such as Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Marco Polo, YouTube, Tumblr, Twitter, and seemingly countless others. We now have the power to express whatever we want in an instant with just a single click. But, should we?

You see, what we all have to understand is that for all who have been redeemed by the blood of Christ, you no longer just speak and represent yourself; but rather you are now a representative of Jesus! The Apostle Paul describes Christians as “ambassadors for Christ” (2 Corinthians 5:20). As ambassadors, how are we doing? Are we representing Him well?  I truly believe we don’t often consider this truth before we execute our thoughts and emotions. Instead, we regularly cave into our ambitions and “indulge in the desires of the flesh and of the mind” (Ephesians 2:3).

Christian, we say and show a lot of things through various social media platforms that look an awful lot like the world around us, the world that does not have the life giving hope of Jesus. Please hear me, I am not condemning the use of social media. Quite the contrary actually. What I am saying is that we need to be careful about what we are sharing and strongly considering who we are representing.

When dealing with issues revolving around individual freedoms and liberties, Paul provides a fantastic example to follow when writing to the Corinthian Church in 1 Corinthians 10:23-33. Paul writes in verse 23, “All things are lawful, but not all things are profitable. All things are lawful, but not all things edify.” How does this statement apply to what we share and post? Well, I’m glad you asked! Is what we’re floating out there on the internet benefiting others in such a way that it’s pointing our “friends” and “followers” to the God of our salvation? This is exactly the point that Paul is driving home in 1 Corinthians 10:23-33. The truth that we need to firmly grasp is that we are to glorify God in whatever we do (1 Corinthians 10:31) and continue to live in a way that points others to Christ through the way we live our lives and through what we share publically “so that they may be saved” (1 Corinthians 10:33).

Christian, we are called to a higher standard of conduct because of who we now represent and who we now belong to.  Let us not only ask ourselves the “should I” question. But also ask, “Does this glorify God?” Paul again so nicely sums up this standard of Christian living in Colossians 3:17 when he writes to the believers in Colossae “Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father.”

Reflect on this last truth; this life we now live is not our own because we have been bought with a price, therefore let us live it out in a fashion that glorifies our awesome God (1 Corinthians 6:19-20).

Grace to you,
Josh Weatherspoon, Minister to Students

Family Worship

How many of you set aside a daily time just to spend with God; praying, reading, singing? I suspect a good majority of you. Now, what if I asked you if you are spending daily time in family worship? Yep, family worship.  A time when you gather the family together to read the Word of God, pray, and yes, even sing! To even take this a step further, the time of family worship is to be in addition to and not in substitute of your own personal time with our Heavenly Father.

But Josh (you might say), you have no idea the weekly schedule our family keeps; we work 40+ hours each, we have soccer on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, baseball on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and then Volleyball tournaments all day every Saturday! To this point, John Piper has a great quote regarding family worship: “You have to decide how important you think these family moments are. It is possible for little ones and teenagers and parents. You may have to work at it. But it can be done.” Martin Luther once wrote regarding family worship: “Therefore such a house is actually a school and church, and the head of the household is a bishop and priest in his house.”

Parents, specifically fathers, have a mandate to lead our family in regular worship of our great God.  I urge you, do not forsake this responsibility. The biblical precedent for this is prevalent throughout Scripture.  You’ll notice the clear picture of teaching and worship within the family dynamic in Genesis 18:17-19, Deuteronomy 6:4-7, Psalm 78:1-8, Ephesians 5:25-26, and Ephesians 6:4 (just to name a few).

Children are a gift from God (Psalm 127:3) and we have been given the great responsibility of leading them well (Ephesians 6:4). Carve out time in your hectic schedule and begin leading regular family worship today!

Grace to you,

Josh Weatherspoon, Minister to Students