Sunday’s Scripture ~ Job …
A text from the Book of Job. So for good measure…you could read it. It’s just a bit of light reading…promise.
The worship service at Reeves this weekend will be entirely under lay leadership as I am on a little adventure out of town and my Lay Leader is preaching on a text from Job…he has 42 chapters from which to select…that should be fun!
It’s my first Sunday off since the end of September 2012…and I’ll be honest…I’m excited. I’ll be spending the weekend camping in the great outdoors, breathing fresh air, clearing my head, roasting marshmallows, and releasing the mountains of tension in my shoulders. And if not releasing…starting to release.
But a thought before I head out. I think it’s time I…and we…re-enroll.
Last night at Bible Study we concluded a series by Ray Vander Laan entitled In the Dust of the Rabbi and Ray asked, “How can we as disciples go and make disciples, baptizing and teaching them to obey if we don’t know for ourselves what Jesus said?”
If we haven’t spent time in the posture and practice of a talmid, the Hebrew word for disciple by
- Searching the Scriptures
- Attending worship
- Studying alongside teachers
then how are we prepared to speak with integrity before others about joining us in the practices that we do? We are not in a place to speak from the heart, to speak with and from personal experience, to speak with conviction, to speak with the fruits of faith to so as to move mountains!
And I don’t think we are in that place because, and yes, I’m about to say it, we are lazy. You. Me. We. Are. Lazy.
Just like everything else in life – “it” whatever “it” is – is not my primary responsibility.
How many people come to church, sit in the pews waiting for the preacher or the choir members or the ushers or the Sunday School teachers or the fellowship directors or whoever to make them into the disciples that Christ wants them to be but won’t move one iota to contribute towards that call on his or her own?
The talmids in Jesus’ day had to be responsible. That was part of the job description. It wasn’t an option; this behavior, this lifestyle was expected and required as one’s best offering to their rabbi…and yet we seem to offer Jesus leftovers week after week…
I co-lead a weekly high school ladies Bible study with a friend and colleague in ministry and we always try to come up with interesting ways for the girls to briefly share with us about their weeks. One session it was describe your week through a food and one of the girls said something like “my week was like half-eaten week old Chinese food that’s been left in your car.”
Is that what we are offering to Jesus when we offer ourselves as talmids? Is that the level of conviction and commitment we bring and then give to going in his name to make other talmids baptizing them and teaching them to obey?
Perhaps that’s why in a lot of places it looks like the church is just spinning its wheels…
My friends, I am reminded, I am convicted that there is so much work to be done. Responsibility must be taken.
As a clergy person I have to commit to equipping the persons I serve with the resources they need to be talmids. I have to stop making up excuses for not teaching resources and creating shortcuts for the persons I serve because it’s easier. I am guilty of doing things myself because it’s easier to go it alone rather than partnering with another disciple. Lord, forgive my pride and lead me to come alongside.
And we all – everyone – have to get into the Word, get into worship, get into prayer, get into study.
It’s time to get with it. It’s time to take that responsibility.
It’s time to re-enroll.