(Post by: Lilly Hobbs)
What do you think Christianity would look like if we had everything our way? I think that’s an interesting question to think about for most us. What would look different than it does now if we got to choose?
What’s optional and what’s necessary?
I want to answer those questions with you today in a realistic fashion. I want to see what it would actually be like if we did our own thing, even if we knew what the truth was.
You see, I don’t think the Holy Spirit is an optional thing. He is absolutely necessary.
1 Corinthians 6:19 says, “Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own…?”
I’m just going to be bold and say that I think we’ve had everything our way for so long now, that it’s gotten to the point where we don’t think it’s a big deal if we don’t listen to God when He leads us to do something.
We don’t think it’s a big deal at all.
For example, when the Holy Spirit encourages us to pray for someone, to set a high standard, or to let go of a worldly pursuit, we trick ourselves into thinking that it’s optional. We don’t really have to do that.
Listen, I just want to make this clear. It’s a big deal to hear from God or read a command in His Word and intentionally say “no”.
Truth is, we do have Christianity our way, and you’re seeing what that looks like right now. I’ve heard people say things like, “Well, you know, I can’t really live out my faith at school or at work every day, so it’d be nice if it could just be an optional, once a week opportunity.” Or, “I’ll be back to Bible Study in a couple months after I finish with my summer activity.”
We make the things of God seem optional in our lives, and when we do that, we also make them look trivial to the people around us.
We have verses like Matthew 6:3-4 that we trick ourselves into thinking are optional. That verse talks about not being prideful when we give money. In the times we’re living in, I think we’d probably shout from the rooftops that we gave money to somebody, instead of being quiet about it. Please, we put our names on plaques and banners saying that we gave money to something because we want people to know about it!
This is the question I want you to ask yourself today… Do I think that the things of God, the things He asks of us, are necessary and worth doing every time I’m asked?
Hudson Taylor once said, “Christ is either Lord of all, or He is not Lord at all.”
If only we lived like that quote was true. If we actually believed it, then our focus would be on Him and not ourselves.
So, I would like to challenge all of us to seriously consider how we think about these things. Because if we think this through, we might just choose to do something differently.
Otherwise, listening to the Holy Spirit really is optional and, we should just realize this Tozer quote is really how we are functioning:
“If the Holy Spirit was withdrawn from the Church today, 95% of what we do would go on and no one would know the difference.” (A.W. Tozer)
Everything He asks you to do is extremely necessary. Now get out there and do your job, Christian.
SO WHAT IS YOUR RESPONSE?
= Do you consider some of the things God tells you to do to be optional?
= Would you believe yourself to be an ordinary Christian?
= What are you going to do differently?