Tuesday, April 16, 2013
7 REASONS WHY CHRISTIANS DRIFT AWAY (Part 3)
For the past few days, we’ve brought into light the first four (4) disturbing decisions some believers chose to follow which drove them to drift away from the fold of faith. Now, let us proceed further with the remaining subtle causes:
In today’s fast-paced, modern, and busy world, the most neglected Christian practice or virtue is prayer. Just like Martha in the scripture (Luke 10:41), we are pre-occupied with so many good things that we can no longer sense, determine, or discern if these good things are really the right things for us. Just because an act is good doesn’t necessarily mean that the act is right. Mary, however, did the right thing (Luke 10:42).
I once heard a minister who said, “Prayer is the most important activity of men, yet it is the least activity that men performed.” Sir Francis Kong is right when he said, “Never let the urgent take over the important. Your work is urgent but your God is important.” Remember that God doesn’t want you to pursue your church’ mission and vision at the expense of your intimacy with Him. In other words, God doesn’t want us to pursue God’s work at the expense of our intimacy with Him.
In spite of its myriad of definition, in my opinion, prayer is simply an act of humility that we choose to perform to commune with God acknowledging that apart from Him, our own strength, ability, and wisdom, even our whole being, can do nothing.
“For it’s not by might, nor by power but by My Spirit, says the LORD.” – Zech. 4:6
Prayer speaks of an intimate fellowship and communication with God. The Holy Spirit inspires us on what we ought to pray and He, likewise, uses the scripture to convey to us God’s message assuring us of its authenticity and void of mistake.
A believer’s faithfulness in prayer establishes his/her intimate devotion with God. Unless we give priority on this matter, we can never see nor gaze upon the awesome beauty of the LORD, but instead, gaze upon the deceiving beauty of the world. Consequently, this will lead us to gradually drift away.
“One thing have I asked of the LORD, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to inquire in his temple.” – Psalm 27:4 (ESV)
Lack of Knowledge of One’s Purpose:
“The LORD will fulfill His purpose for me.” – Psalm 138:8(a)
God did not choose and save us just for us to go to heaven. This is a selfish motive. We have a purpose to perform. The time we entered His kingdom through the born-again experience, He has already in mind what we are here for. This is the very same purpose He had before we were created.
"Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations." – Jer. 1:5
Just like Jeremiah who had been purposed by God to be a prophet, you, too, have a specific assignment for you to perform. As one minister wisely says, “You were not born just to make a living. You are here to live out an assignment on this planet. You were born to make a difference in the world.”
The scripture reminds us further as it says, “You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit--fruit that will last--and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you.” – John 15:16
Unless we have a clear understanding and grasp of our purpose, any problem that we may encounter along the way would seem to appear so big and insurmountable kind of an obstacle. The slightest offense done against us or the most trivial mistake we see done by our brethren could be a potent catalyst to drift us away.
“We make it our goal to please Him ...” – 2 Cor. 5:9(a)
The Need for Genuine Love:
On the other hand, if the love of Christ is in our heart, no amount of obstacles can deter us from fulfilling our purposes in life. For love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails. – 1 Cor. 13:7-8
The world has a lot of interpretation about love, but the fact of the matter is that genuine love only rests in Christ. In my opinion, love is a very powerful arsenal in the world. Love actually emanates from the kingdom of God and penetrates the world to sustain its existence. Had it not for love, the world has long been in jeopardy.
You might be surprised on hearing this, but love has its limitation, too. It can only manifest its full force when properly reciprocated. You see, because of God’s love, He gave us a gift. But the Gift, Jesus Christ, could not bestow His wondrous intent unless the receiver, the world, accepts the gift.
“For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” – John 3:16
A person can only benefit from God’s ultimate expression of love when he/she responds accordingly by accepting the Gift.
“Yet to all who receive Him, to those who believe in His name, He gave the right to become children of God.” – John 1:12
In the same way, there is also a need for every citizens of the kingdom to respond appropriately. The book of John is clear by saying, “If you love Me, you’ll obey what I command” – John 14:15. The same is true on a succeeding verse which says, “Whoever has My commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves Me. He who loves Me will be loved by My Father and I, too, will love him and reveal Myself to him” – John 14:21.
We can really determine the gauge of our love for the LORD by the gauge of our obedience to Him. Unless we capture this solemn truth, anyone among the citizens can be a candidate to drift away from faith.
Finally, let me emphasize what the Word of God says in the book of James: “remember this: Whoever turns a sinner from the error of his way will save him from death and cover over a multitude of sins” – Jas. 5:20.
God’s love and mercy offers us bountiful hope for us to return back to Him once we found ourselves drifting away from Him. These will prompt other believers to summon us, with power, to come back to the fold of faith... Good to us if we could be the one leading others back.
“We must pay more careful attention, therefore, to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away.” – Hebrews 2:1
Have a blessed day/evening to all!!