|In your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who |
asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have but do this with gentleness and respect.
1 Peter 3:15
Anyone else wrestle with what it means to always have an answer for this hope within us? I have lots of answers to give folks... and yet I worry that I've not yet found an answer to end all questions. Our faith isn't distilled to the answering of a single question, it's based on a deep, heartfelt understanding springing from a hungry soul. The intellect absolutely plays a role--the addressing of many questions, a lifelong conversation--in leaving us convinced that this hope is true, but it does not stand alone.
We read Genesis 3 at our last small group meeting. And I felt that we got bogged down with our intellectual dead end's for so many questions that we can't begin to form answers for. The good news is that they were minor questions. We have massive chunks of truth to perpetuate our faith in the Bible, puzzle pieces that fit into each other, boulders that build on one another! Why do we let ourselves get dragged by scientific questions that are themselves based on theory?
The key part in this verse is quickly overlooked. Before anything else, let's address that first portion: revere Christ as Lord. That is the most critical and most difficult challenge in our daily war against the desires in our bones that lead us down a slippery slope to nothing good. Am I submitting to God in this decision? Am I revering Christ as boss of my to-do list? Am I letting Him reign in my heart... or is my deep longing for comfort and ease driving my emotions?
When we revere, the reason becomes clear. When you're laying down something that's out of place in your priorities, the reason why becomes so solidly placed in your heart, that all that's left is to form the words.
And of course, as we form those words, gentleness and respect goes a long way. Tactics including condescension and hostility melt away when you're busy humbling your heart before a great God. And that's not how we landed at a lowly posture before God in the first place. No, odds are that rule and rules didn't bring you to His feet, longing to sit on His lap; no, it was His kindness.
Only one left to finish up of the Created Sermon Series! I enjoy doing church sketches, but I've also enjoyed feeling more free to put my sketchbook down and just listen. I'll post a key verse from Created for Holiness for the next #watercolordevowednesday post!