Aug. 4 - Nate Porter, Do Tough Things
Nate opened his sermon on Sunday with a question: “If you were getting in the way of your own spiritual life, would you want to know about it?”
The majority of us will say yes, picturing a scenario where we get hit by a space rock and wake up one day to find we’re a super villain bent on destroying the world. “If that’s what’s tripping up my spiritual life then yes, please let me know.” But if we take a good look at our lives, we may find we ARE getting in our own way, just not in a flashy, obvious way like addiction, infidelity, or a crime spree. What we may find is that we’re not digging as deep into our faith as we could and that’s keeping us from a closer relationship with Christ than we could have.
Nate used the illustration of climbing a ladder. God is calling us to climb to the top, but we hop on the bottom rung and feel like that's sufficient. “I’m coming to church on Sunday. I’m not rocking the boat. I didn’t cuss at anyone today. I’m doing great.” But God calls us to so much more than that. It’s up to us to do the tough things, to allow ourselves to be uncomfortable, to move to the next level in our spiritual walk. The writer of Hebrews warns us against this kind of thinking:
Hebrews 5:11-14 We have much to say about this, but it is hard to make it clear to you because you no longer try to understand. In fact, though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God’s word all over again. You need milk, not solid food! Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness. But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil.
Could someone call you out as an infant in your spiritual life? Are you doing the bare minimum to try to get into Heaven, but avoiding a deep relationship with the God who created you? Have you been allowing others in the church to serve you for a decade, but you’ve never considered serving others? And a really good question - do you find yourself blaming others for your spiritual apathy? You are the only one who can do the tough things and take the next steps. Your pastor, your spouse, or your worship team cannot be held responsible. This is between you and God.
Spend some time in prayer today asking God to show you areas of your life where you can grow closer to Him. Pray for the courage and the wisdom to be able to do the tough things. It won’t be easy, but it will certainly be worth it.