Sunday, January 8, 2017

Sunday---Becoming A True Christian

ANYONE WHO WANTS TO BECOME A CHRISTIAN MUST BASICALLY SURRENDER TO THE UNKNOWN AS MARY AND ABRAHAM DID. Becoming a Christian is not like signing up for a gym; it is not a "living well" program that will help you flourish and realize your potential.  Christianity is not another vendor supplying spiritual services you engage as long as it meets your needs at a reasonable cost.  Christian faith is not a negotiation but a  surrender.  It means    to take your hands off your life.  John Wesley's "Covenant Prayer" expresses it well:

I am no longer my own, but thine.
Put me to what thou wilt, rank me with whom thou wilt.
Put me to doing,  put me to suffering.
Let me be employed for thee or laid aside for thee,
exalted for thee or  brought low for thee.
Lee me be full, let me be empty.
Let me have all things, let me have nothing.
I freely and heartily yield all things to thy pleasure and disposal.
And now, O glorious and blessed God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit,
thou art mine, and I am thine.
So be it.
And the covenant which I have made on earth,
let it be ratified in heaven.

....The call to theologically grounded, willing, glad, surrender is the most radically countercultural summons possible in the modern Western world that values personal autonomy over all things.  Readers, therefore might feel overwheolmed at this point....

The pentiultimate is to recognize that if we commit ourselves to God, we can trust that he is committed to us.  Jesus once asked his disciples, "Which of you fathers, if your son asks for a fish, will give him a smake instead." (Luke 11:11) He then reasoned that God is infinitely more generous than earthly fathers and will "give the Holy Spirit" to anyone who asks. (Luke 11:13)

----Timothy Keller,  Hidden Christmas, pg 93-94

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