Tuesday, January 08, 2013

Come as You Are

This post is kind of a continuation of yesterday's "Sin No More". I am still referencing the event of the adulterous woman being brought before Christ Jesus and he says, "Let him who is without sin among you be the first to throw a stone at her." And also the occurrence of the disabled man by the pool when Jesus told him to, "Get up, take up your bed, and walk."

In both of those situations (and all of the others in scripture where someone is healed, pardoned, and/or saved or judged, God and Jesus met each individual where they were...Paul on the road to Damascus on his way to continue persecuting Christians, Zacchaeus up in a tree, the disciples while they were fishing, Samuel as he was sleeping, Cain whilst he was fleeing, Adam and Eve when they were hiding, Jonah in the midst of his defiance, David was visiting his brothers when Goliath showed up, wedding guests were at a feast when they received the wine Jesus had made, etc.

So being Jesus did that for others (and God continues to do so to this day) should I not catch up with people where they are instead of trying to drag them to where I am (or insisting they join me where I stand)? Jesus did as God's word instructs, He went out and "made disciples" and He taught them, each on his own level. For the beginners, he told parables.
Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age." (Matthew 28:19, 20 ESV)

As a dance instructor, I must go level by level, tiny step by intricate step according to each student's ability. Otherwise, the one learning becomes frustrated (maybe quits) and I would feel my efforts futile. Can the same not be said for sharing the word of God? The bible illustrates new believers as sipping on milk like an infant and slowly graduating to meat (1Peter 2:2, 1 Corinthians 3:2, Hebrews 5:12-13, John 16:12). To unbelievers the gospel is either foolishness, they cannot understand it, or are perhaps even offended by it. For me, I grew up in the church but still I just could not comprehend it. It was not because I had an old King James bible, I had a children's bible (from the third grade) for Pete's sake! I just did not get it! The Holy Spirit was not in me. I fell completely in love with Jesus as my Lord and Savior in high school and things started to make sense, but it was when I began spending each day in God's word that everything truly came together! That was when I was 30! So, who am I to get impatient with others?!

Now this I say and testify in the Lord, that you must no longer walk as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their minds. They are darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, due to their hardness of heart. They have become callous and have given themselves up to sensuality, greedy to practice every kind of impurity. But that is not the way you learned Christ!— assuming that you have heard about him and were taught in him, as the truth is in Jesus, to put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness. (Ephesians 4:17-24 ESV)

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