Archive for May, 2012
We just finished Memorial weekend in the US. One of the things we did over the weekend was listen to an audio message by Michael Horton from the Liberate Conference that was held in February of 2012. In one part of his message he used the analogy of an expensive sail boat dead in the water because even though it had all of the expensive gadgets on board to make it something to be envied, it had no wind in it’s sails to keep it moving and make it a thing of real beauty. I related to this on so many levels because it describes what happened to us and our own journey away from, and back to, the gospel.
We had all the gadgets – the theology, the hermeneutic, the pat answers, the proof texts, etc. But our sails were empty of gospel wind, so while we may have looked good on one level, we were powerless to move. We were motionless in the water. The sail boat we were on needed Read the rest of this entry »
This 10 minute video of Tullian Tchividjian and Jono Linebaugh answering the question, “What is Christian Growth?” is excellent. Please invest 10 minutes and watch this. It’s well worth your time. Gospel-centered sanctification takes the focus of the Christian life off of me and liberates me from beating myself up when I don’t feel like I’m measuring up. Check this out….
I used to lead worship about once a month at a church we once attended. Recently, I was looking through the songs I used to play and one called “Undivided Heart” grabbed my attention. Here’s the lyrics from the first verse:
If I’m to be whom You desire
All throughout my life
A vessel unto honor, Lord to Thee
And before Your throne to hear You say
That I have done my part
Lord, I need an undivided heart
These are good lyrics and a good reminder. Paul told the Corinthians to be undivided in their devotion to the Lord (1 Corinthians 7:35). That’s something we need to be reminded of all day every day. At least I do. But here’s the rub. When someone steeped in performance-based Christianity (PBC) hears these lyrics, they can quickly turn them into a to-do list. PBCers like to-do lists. PBCers are on the prowl for good to-do lists. I know because I used to be one (a PBCer – not a to-do list).
The PBCer will read “if I’m to be whom you desire….[if] I have done my part…I need an undivided heart” and conclude that God is only pleased with me if I have Read the rest of this entry »
Today we re-launched Journey in Grace. If you’ve been here before, you’ll notice some changes. First, the blog is no longer the home page. I wanted to make the home page a place to talk about our philosophy of what a Christian blog site should be and what Journey in Grace is about. I also added My Journey in Grace as an introduction of why Journey in Grace exists and where the Lord has taken us in our thinking and experiences, especially since late 2008. We hope you enjoy the new look and the new content! Feel free to interact with us at any time. If stealth surfing is more your style, have at it!
This quote by Robert McGee that I found on Tullian Tchividjian’s web site nails it for me:
It is important to understand that fruitfulness and growth are the results of focusing on Christ and desiring to honor Him. When growth and change are our primary goals, we tend to be preoccupied with ourselves instead of with Christ. “Am I growing? Am I getting any better? Am I more like Christ today? What am I learning?” This inordinate preoccupation with self-improvement parallels our culture’s self-help and personal enhancement movement in many ways. Personal development is certainly not wrong, but it is misleading—and it can be very disappointing—to make it our preeminent goal. As we grasp the unconditional love, grace, and power of God, then honoring Christ will increasingly be our consuming passion…The only One worthy of our preoccupation is Christ, our sovereign Lord, who told Paul, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is perfected in weakness.”
Looking at my own performance for comfort, joy, or assurance leads to disappointment, disillusionment, and despair. Look to Jesus!