Newsletter 06.01.16

Dear Church Family,

Summer is a good time for reflection. Not always, but typically our schedules are a little bit abnormal and we plan to do certain things we don’t do at other points in the year. With this change of pace we should build in moments to pause and assess our lives. As believers, we want to know God more fully through His Word with each passing day, but we will also benefit from designated opportunities to intensely analyze our Christian walks.

One of the ways we should do this is by prayerfully asking ourselves the question: “What is the driving passion of my life?” Ultimately, we know our answer should be: “Glorifying God with our lives.” But to gauge how well we are doing, let me point you to a passage that you all know very well from Mark 12:28-30 which says, “And one of the scribes came up and heard them disputing with one another, and seeing that he answered them well, asked him, “Which commandment is the most important of all?” Jesus answered, “The most important is, ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’””

Don’t let your familiarity with this passage rob its weight and significance. If our lives are meant to be spent in consistent and sustained efforts to glorify God, our consuming passion must be to love the Lord our God with all that we are—our entire existence.

Is that true of you? Do those closest to you perceive this desire in you? Think about it. I mean really think about it. How has this pursuit of God shaped you over the course of your Christian life? What are the areas in your life where you have progressed the most in your love for God? What areas has the Holy Spirit revealed to you that still need greater conformity with His Word, in order to evidence your faith in and love for God?

Our love of God, like everything else in our lives, involves a process in which we grow and develop from one degree to another. There will be seasons of rapid growth, as well as periods of drought, but the general pattern of our lives should be gradual movement toward greater faithfulness. God is not satisfied with “partial” Christians—He wants all of our heart, all of our soul, all of our mind, and all of our strength; that is, all of us. If He is not satisfied with divided Christians, we shouldn’t be either.

We all have areas that require fuller submission to our Lord. Together, let’s ask our loving God to reveal to us the ways in which we do not fully love Him. Together, let’s encourage one another with the evidences of God’s transforming power we see in one another. Together, let’s lovingly hold one another accountable to the all-consuming passion God has given each of His children to love Him wholly. Thanks be to God for giving us His Spirit and His Church in order that we might all pursue Him, together.

Gentry