Sunday, April 15, 2012

After about three weeks here I wrote this

2For I decided to know nothing among you except  Jesus Christ and him crucified. 

This is a passage that has held a great deal of significance to me over the last few years in college ministry. It is now in the Marine Corps that I revisit it and it's significance grows deeper still. The more life I live the more I realize it's a great deal more about Christ and far less about the things we think are important. 

Tonight as I was talking with a friend I thought one of my biggest problems was  having very little to do in a town that I have few close friends around. He asked me a question that hit me straight in the gut, hows your time in the word been? I had to answer I haven't even opened my bible since coming here outside of church. Coming to this place the biggest passion I had was sharing Christ, while I have had a few opportunities to talk with some guys there has been little evangelism. I realize that I have nothing to offer and the only thing I have is Christ. His crucifixion paved the road of grace as his blood spilled out. The only way to walk this road is in Christ, and the only place to do that is on our knees in the word before him. This is the posture of an effective man of Christ. As Christ pours out his love which washes freely over us filling our souls to contentment it spills out infectiously shaping and defining each and every aspect of our lives. Yet still more is poured out and it spreads out around us into others... This is all we have... the opportunity to place ourselves at the very foot of Christs blood stained cross to become a conduit of love gushing out into this world. 

As I reflected on these thoughts I was having more scripture came to mind. 

For we know that if  the tent that is  1 our earthly home is destroyed, we have a building from God,  a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. 2For in this tent  we groan, longing to  put on our heavenly dwelling, 3if indeed by putting it on [1] we may not be found naked. 4For while we are still in this tent, we groan, being burdened—not that we would be unclothed, but that we would be further clothed, so that what is mortal  may be swallowed up by life. 5He who has prepared us for this very thing is God,  who has given us the Spirit as a guarantee.
6So we are always of good courage. We know that  while we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord, 7for  we walk by faith, not  by sight. 8Yes, we are of good courage, and we  would rather be away from the body and at home with the Lord. 9So whether we are at home or away, we make it our aim to  please him. 10For  we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ,  so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil.

Weather we like it or not we are in a war. The objective isn't political or territorial, we're not even fighting for people to be like us although I think many think we are. We are fighting only for lives, laying down our lives in the pursuit of others. It sounds silly until you see the master plan, to give up everything to live for a paradox; "to live is Christ and to die is gain". Truly the weight of this escapes us or we cannot face it because we cannot bear to let go of the trash that we so desperately cling to. Praying and hoping that just maybe it can save us. If only we could see ourselves, hanging on to an empty candy bar wrapper when a check of infinite love sits in front of us payment for every injustice with an infinite amount left over to satisfy us for an eternity. It's complete foolishness. That wrapper is literally everything this world has to offer compared to the love of Christ. 

18Now  b when Jesus saw a crowd around him,  c he gave orders to go over to the other side. 19 d And a scribe came up and said to him, “Teacher, I will follow you wherever you go.” 20And Jesus said to him, “Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.” 21Another of the disciples said to him, “Lord, let me first go and bury my father.” 22And Jesus said to him, “Follow me, and leave  e the dead to bury their own dead.”

This is the place of a warrior, physical or spiritual. No one is fit to fight who has  even one thing that will make his feet slow, his mind sluggish and his will diminished. It is only when you have given everything that you can hope to gain anything. It is this sacrifice of the things we have that allows us to be quick and sharp in combat. We must strive to sacrifice it all to the lord. Only then can we fight in the most significant war of them all and hope to prevail.