Fat and Happy

Acts 1:8 You will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.

We are called to be heralds for the King to a dark and unbelieving world.  We are the vessels of “new wine”, of the good news—the Gospel.  It is the King’s divine plan to utilize and mobilize us to expand His message of redemption, peace and joy.  Unfortunately, such a plan is in direct opposition to social entropy.  We—especially as Americans—have mastered the art of finding what is comfortable, and resting there.  We seek out environments that will allow us to feel fat and happy.

This is entirely understandable.  We crave environments where we can be known, accepted and at peace with those around us.  Creating that level of honesty, vulnerability and acceptance takes time.  It takes a high level of relational and emotional investment.  Once we have found such a group, why would we want to leave it?  Why wouldn’t we rest in the warm agreeable embrace of those that know and love us?  We wouldn’t because the expansion of the Kingdom is dependent on our propelling the message outward—to Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, “and to the ends of the earth.”

If the Church we read of in the book of Acts had sought only to find a contented equilibrium with its “current” attenders, Christianity would never have expanded and grown.  Most likely, if adopted by the early Church, such an attitude of complacency would have led to a slow fade and eventual eradication of the Gospel. Thankfully that was not their attitude.  Their attitude was that of Christ Jesus when he proclaimed, “I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it.”

We must battle against our very human need for comfort.  We must seek situations where will be challenged and stretched.  Pursuing situations where we must trust in the leading and blessing of the Holy Spirit.  Therefore, if you are in a small group that is large yet unwilling to multiply, it is time to accept the Lord’s instruction to “go into all the world”.  If you are attending a church that seems content to “fortify its walls” rather than “take new ground”, then it is time to challenge others to read, meditate and respond to the instructions of Christ.

God’s will for your group or church is not to get complacent and comfortable with the holy huddle that has formed.  His will is that you would support one another as you faithfully multiply and expand His Kingdom through new relationships.  This can be scary and uncomfortable, but it is an essential part of the world-changing plan of the High King of Heaven.

Joel Thomas

2 comments

  1. Thanks Joel, great insight well spoken. With the surprising death of my Dad on Valentines morning I’ve been reminded again how short and how fragile life really is. I easily forget and do become complacent. I must regularly remind and challenge myself: I am not going to live forever, my lost friends are indeed in need of my courage to share the gospel with them, and I must routinely assess my days for how they reflect my stated priorities.

    I’ll be courageous today!
    Thanks, bro.

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