Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Crazy Love Chapter/Week 5 - Serving Leftovers to a Holy God

This might have been a difficult chapter to read after our chapter last week reviewing the profile of a lukewarm person. Frances Chan says that Chapter 5 was the most difficult for him to write.

Chan believes that too often there are patterns in church and in our lives that we follow simply because it has always been done that way. On the study resource video, he gave the example of building their church sanctuary. Once they outgrew their previous sanctuary, they simply built a larger one. Chan said that only afterward did he realize that he never asked God if that was the biblical thing to do—the thing God desired for them to do. He gives us much to think about when he said in the video that we are fed so much in the church that may not be biblical, but we accept it as if it were. We accept it simply because it has always been done that way.

In Chapter 5, Chan quotes Tim Kizziar who said, “Our greatest fear as individuals and as a church should not be of failure but of succeeding at things in life that don’t really matter.” After reading chapter 5, share honestly your answers to the following questions:

Question 1: On pages 83 and 84, Chan says the following: “As I see it, a lukewarm Christian is an oxymoron; there’s no such thing. To put it plainly, churchgoers who are ‘lukewarm’ are not Christians.”
Do you agree with this statement? Why or why not?

Question 2: We need to be totally honest with ourselves, yet not feel any shame over the answer to this next question. If you sensed a lukewarmness in your life, trying harder is NOT the answer but rather pressing deeper into the Lord Jesus Christ and allowing Him to assure you of your salvation or come into your heart for the first time. After reading chapters 4 and 5, do you have any doubts about your salvation? Where did Chapter 5 leave you?

Challenge: Make a commitment to NOT be the type of Christian who ‘gets to go to heaven without having to commit to anything’.

6 comments:

Faye said...

LEAH,YOU ARE SUCH A BLESSING TO ME.HAVE A GREAT DAY! BLESSINGS, FAYE

Yolanda said...

I totally agree. Operating off of my own walk with Christ, I don't have any desire to be who I was, nor to be a slacker. I want my love for Him to grow and grow and grow, that just can't happen if I'm a slacker. Luke warm. If I was luke warm, I'm pretty positive that I would not have had an encounter with Christ, therefore how can I give my heart to Him without one?


I have no doubts and I find myself falling more and more in love with His Word, which causes me to more and more love HIM.

Thank you!

Janice said...

Question 1: Phew! I don't believe one can say without question that a lukewarm churchgoer isn't a Christian. There were many followers of Jesus in the Bible who were lukewarm at times. (Noah, Abraham, David, Peter, the prodigal son, to name a few.) I believe one can "stray" and become lukewarm (or backslidden, as some call it) and still be saved. I don't believe, however, that someone can live a life of habitual sin and continue that way for years on end and be saved. The Bible teaches that one will produce good fruit when one is a Christian. Living a life of continual sin is not a possibility for the true Christian. I believe that person will be miserable until they surrender to the Holy Spirit's prompting to "come back home." The Bible teaches that we have eternal security once we're saved. If God isn't big enough to keep us once we accept Jesus as our personal Savior, then He isn't a very big God! I would be scared to death if I thought I could do anything to keep myself saved.

Question 2: I don't have any doubts about my salvation. I was once a prodigal daughter - I committed some serious sins for a season in my life, but when I came running back toward home, He was there to welcome me with open arms! Hallelujah and praise You, Jesus!

Chapter 5 caused me to think about how I serve God. I don't want Him to have my leftovers!

In Christ,
Janice

Leah said...

Question 1: I do think you can be a lukewarm Christian, because I was one for many years. I know without a doubt that I was saved at the age of 15 but I walked away from the Lord in my 20s. Basically I had 'fire' insurance and that was all I was concerned about for several years. No doubt in my mind, though, that I was saved.

Question 2: There were a few of the lukewarm tendancies that I found in myself last week but I know that I know that I know that I am saved. No doubts at all.

Chapter 5 left me examining whether I am guilty of giving leftovers to the Lord. I know that I do in the area of my trust. Sometimes I say I trust Him then I try to grab hold of CONTROL or I worry and fret.

I do not want to acts as if or live as if I can get to heaven just because of my salvation and never have to commit to anything. I want to sell out completely for Christ.

Leah

Channy said...

This chapter once again left me reeling with thoughts of doubt and self criticism. After wrestling with these thoughts for the past two weeks, I've decided that this may be the area where Satan attacks me personally the most. I begin to analyse my motives and my salvation. It can quickly turn into a works based salvation. I think that people and probably especially women (who tend to have a superwoman mentality anyway) can try to develop a formula to meet all the demands they feel. I try to stretch myself in all directions to meet my roles as mother, godly mother, employee, godly employee, church member, involved church member. In trying to do all of these things well, I often times fail at doing ANY of them well. When I realize my defeat and my dependence on the grace and strength of God, I do the only important thing well and that is rest in Him--lean heavily on him and admit my failures and shortcomings to Him. Then he opens my eyes to see those same qualities in others and can use me to show kindness, acceptance, and love to someone feeling as unworthy as I do. Commiting to something is critical--Commiting yourself to love Christ and realize you're not Him. Commiting yourself to everything to try to feel worthy is Satan's trap to keep you from rely on God.

The Quester said...

Question 1: I'm fat and like to eat junk food. I know how easy it is to go to the gym and eat healthy. I just don't do it. My heart isn't in it. I had been apathetic about Christ and his command to "Love God/Others more than myself". I was no more a Christian then than I am an athlete. Lukewarm is not the narrow path that leads to salvation. There is no middle path. Lukewarm Christians are not saved. Jesus doesn't expect me to run a Christian triathlon my first day I commit to following him. He just wants me to surrender to His will, daily, and make Him my number one priority. Will I eat a twinkle ever once and a while, yes. Will I backside, I don’t plan to, but I know myself to well to make that promise. I have that focus now and have been able to keep it for about 4 months.

Question 2: I am not in shape yet, but I'm getting there. I have many things left to surrender to Him, but I'm not being lukewarm about it. He loves me and I love Him. We are getting there together. I'm honest when I say I'm learning to walk on that narrow path.