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Pride Blocks Access to Increase: Galatians PT 3 6:6-8

Lately, I'm increasingly more aware of the trap that "arrogance and pride" presents as you learn more and more about and with God. Revelation is amazing, but if we're not careful, the very gift of increase in the Lord can become a litmus test for the world around us. God is very clear in warning each one of us that in our pursuit and relationship with Him, we are not to measure anyone else's pursuit and relationship against ours (or vice versa). Simply put, not one of us is better than the other when it comes to God. However, we are told to share everything we receive from the Lord with those around us.


So, instead of rating ourselves against one another on who is God's favorite per se, we are given the opportunity to glean from one another in our unique lives. God makes SO much available through the world around us that we don't take advantage of because of our own decision to get things our way or ourselves. That's just not how the kingdom works. Remember Adam and Eve? Yep, never has worked and never will.


Jesus said it was better He leave. We know this was because He would send His Spirit to live within us drastically multiplying the accessibility to Himself and God. God's math is ALWAYS multiplication; we just need to be willing to accept it in any way it comes. Usually, this employs humility by receiving what He has for you from the world around you. I would suspect this is one way He attempts to safe-guard us from a performance or superiority complex. The problem is never on His end. The problem is always with our choice to submit to Jesus or go-it our own way.


Paul's letter to the Galatians, I have mused, looks a lot like a letter he'd write to the United States right now, #amiright? We've discussed the real issue of allowing a different gospel to replace Jesus' Gospel; oftentimes, this being a foundational error in identity and subsequently displayed in our lives. We've seen the problem with continuing to war against a design we no longer have as new creations. The subtle attempts of the enemy to persuade us from the freedom that we have in Christ always suggesting that we can somehow do it better, more efficient, legally, logistically, more understandably without Jesus. We see this often here in our country. The greatest travesty being culture's desire to champion "Identity of Self by Self". Yet, there is no peace in defining yourself. You cannot be design and designer. That is why there is so much unrest, so much searching. We were never meant to define ourselves, we are not our own and were purchased at a price. Our identity being safely secured in Christ; while our lives become a demonstration of the design that was originally intended in relationship with THE designer, God Almighty.


I digress. And so does Paul, often. I wonder reading and rereading this letter how often he sat back and exhaled at his frustration. I wonder if Paul wondered if these people would even get it, even listen. No matter what amount of historical, first-hand knowledge and facts he had; would these people listen? Do we listen? Do you listen? Are we more devoted to trying to figure out life and do our best that actually receive the fullness of what Jesus made available? Are you still, perhaps, still warring against what Jesus has for you?


And...


Even when we do get it and begin to understand and become believers, how many of us become one of the Pharisees in our relationship with God? How many of us look down at our brothers and sisters because of their "lack" in relationship or revelation? How high do we perceive ourselves?


Let the one who is taught the word share all good things with the one who teaches.

Take this admonition, for example. In the kingdom, the one who teaches [the teacher] is to expect to learn from the one he/she teaches. That's right! You want to know why? Because the word of God is alive and active and when it is shared and taught, the word is received and does amazing things in each of us that, in turn, reveals different aspects and truths hidden within that each of us gets to display a certain piece of the puzzle. We all know in part, we all see in part, it takes us all to manifest the full wisdom of Christ. Just because you are teaching doesn't mean you can't be taught or shouldn't be taught....As any one of us teaches the word WE SHOULD EXPECT to glean from what we have sown to those around us! Now that is something to chew on.


I have learned through this to expect to learn things from my children as I share the Word with them. None of us have a 'junior' version of Holy Spirit! We all have Him in completion, just varying degrees of time and experience nuance each person's relationship. With that in mind, can you imagine a church that anticipates the congregation receiving revelation and wisdom from those that share from the pulpit? Can you imagine if we could glean from the fullness of what is released when we are taught instead of glorifying one teacher? I know not all church bodies do this, but it is common to only expect the leaders to be the teachers. Also, don't hear what I'm not saying. I don't expect every lay-person to get up and speak at church. I do expect every lay-person to take what they get from the sources they learn from and multiply it in their lives. And I DO expect the church to encourage this. Anyone that functions in an office of the church is supposed to EQUIP the saints. Not entertain them on Sundays. We are supposed to equip the body to become the victorious bride SO THAT Jesus will return (yeah, think about that...not today's subject).


But, Lyndsie, what if they get it wrong or have the wrong motives?


Man, can I say, I think we've worried far too much far too long about controlling error. I am in full agreement with infrastructure and order and soundness of character and biblical lifestyle with responsibility and accountability.....yet, this is the very next verse in our reading today:


Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap.

IN RESPONSE TO "let the one who is taught the word share all good things with the one who teaches" Paul says, "Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows that will he also reap." Galatians 6:6-7 It's on each one of us, in the Presence of God, Himself, that we are accountable for how we represent Him and teach those around us about Him. If you manipulate the Word, change it, water it down, make is culturally acceptable or personally understandable (IE form your own theology based on experience rather than what God says about Himself)- you might make some people less uncomfortable with their lives, but those individuals aren't the ones you are accountable to. YOU, me, the world; we are accountable to God. It's a grave warning IF you're not in relationship with Jesus. God takes His plans very seriously. We should too.


This past Super Bowl there was an expensive campaign released during commercials by the "He Gets Us" group. It has been absolutely crazy to me how many Christians have completely missed what the message was from this group. First of all, yes, I've done my due diligence and I believe that this group IS a group of believers. I believe that they support the Gospel and, furthermore, have been given grace and provision to deliver it to our nation in a way that society can see Jesus for who He is. Many have made comments that these commercials were woke and depicted a "love of Christ" that did not transform or redeem different depictions of sin. On the contrary, I would suggest that the imagery was chosen specifically to highlight all of the most passionate discrepancies we've seen the past few years. The imagery showed that Jesus sees where everyone of us is currently; that circumstances don't separate you from Him; that He gets us. Not that He affirms us in any particular situation, but that He sees, knows our suffering and gets how complicated everything is around us. Yet, He is here. He is love. He is accessible. He is for each and every person.


Now.


If we would just act more like that as the church.


Jesus didn't and doesn't condone sin. Sin is separation. That's the last thing He desires. Yet, His desire to love us and do life with us is what propels each one of us into the decision to lay down our lives and receive His. That change, that's what He does. We don't. Remember, we are Ambassadors--not the Savior.


I include this story because God can't be mocked. This commercial will reap what it has sown. My heart is saddened because many Christians have decided to call this for what it's not instead of celebrate what God was and is doing through it. Dang it, people, wake up. Your level of revelation and understanding does not give you the right to accelerate an entire group of people that don't even know Jesus yet. Don't recognize elementary attempts to introducing Jesus as anti-gospel; celebrate that God cares where each of us is in our pursuit to recognizing Him. We are warned in the Bible not to share things that are beyond other believers understanding. God doesn't want to trip anyone up! He is patient, kind, long-suffering.....not a God that needs to get to a point before the time is right.


For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life.

Maybe we all need to take a look at ourselves in the mirror today.


Do we feel pretty good about who we are because we have great church attendance and serve our community well? Maybe we're just super nice and didn't say the thing we were going to say to that stranger. Yet, none of that makes us righteous in God's eyes. Any right things we do are not enough to have relationship with Him. ONLY Jesus makes that possible. Only Him. How incredible.


If we really stop and give Him the attention and glory due for the very fact that our lives are dependent on His sacrifice He made and that all other things we do from here on out are to honor and worship Him (not to gain anything), it will change the way we live. It will change the way we respond to the world around us, you know why? Our awareness of grace and mercy and our personal need for both become the reservoir we draw from for the rest of our community and world. You've heard, "You can only love to the degree to which you have been loved"? I would suggest also, that you can only respond in grace and mercy to the degree to which you are aware you have received grace and mercy. Judgment and condemnation aren't Jesus' go-tos. He didn't come to condemn the world, but to set it free. He took the judgment meant for us upon Himself, so why wouldn't we be aware of that same reality over everyone around us? Why wouldn't we choose to believe the best about each other- even in circumstances we may have already learned create separation from God? What if we started to love like Jesus did and trust that HE will set free, redeem and restore. What you believe is demonstrated by how you live. Faith without action is nothing. PS- You can have faith placed in places outside of Jesus. So, again, faith without action is dead. Deep concepts and, yet, revealing. Our responses are as powerful as our actions. The way that you react and respond to the world around you will affect the degree to which you receive revelation and understanding from the Lord from those very sources. Do not be deceived. Everything begins at the relational level between you and God. I, for one, can say I need to trust the Lord with His process and His plan a lot more especially when it comes to my own attempts at assuming what those are in any other person's life.


Romans 8:28: if its not good, it ain't over.


We all need a healthy dose of humility this day and age.







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