CURE-ALL-PILL FOR HELL’S ILLS – Just say that phrase three times real fast. Yep, it could be a tongue twister for sure. If it was an infomercial, they would be hawked for $19.99 for a thirty-day supply plus shipping and handling; and if you call in the next thirty minutes they would double your offer, just pay separate shipping! NO, I am not peddling pills. It is just a phrase with a truth behind it. The point being, many people are looking for an easy fix, even in their spiritual lives. If there was a magic pill that would burn fat so you could eat like a hog but look like a chick it would be impossible to keep them on the self. Therehave been many gadgets, gimmicks, and pills that have been sold with a promise but with little or no results. In order to be a strong disciple of Jesus, it is no different, there is no magic pill.
HERE’S THE REAL PILL – The simplest things in life are often the most important and overlooked. I have been talking about discipleship for a long time and those who listen to me most weeks know that I emphasize some basic disciplines of the Christian life that is my secret pill formula:
- Studying the Word of God
- Building a strong relationship with God through prayer and worship
- Living in covenant relationship with family and fellow believers
- Living a life of surrender and obedience, empowered by Holy Spirit
YES, THERE ARE OTHER THINGS – I know there are situations where people need counseling for help with deep rooted problems. And yes, there are some great seminars and conferences where one can grow and learn. BUT, there is nothing that will replace those four simple disciplines that are not always easy to do.
CONSISTENCY – Consistency is the key and consistency takes diligence and work. Concerning Bible study; I know from experience that when I set forth to study the Bible many years ago that I had to approach it in a consistent and methodical manner or I would end up biblical illiterate. God speaks to me through His Word. If we do not put a priority on these four disciplines, the devil will steal our time and make sure we do not get to the important things. Busyness steals time from the important things.
GROWTH – I have two post graduate degrees in ministry. I have read maybe a thousand books or so. I have attended seminars and conferences. All these things have been wonderful, BUT, I can honestly say my most important Christian growth has been alone with God in His Word, in His Presence through prayer and private worship, and through my covenant journey with my wife, children, and fellow believers (in that order).
COVENANT JOURNEY – Our journey with God alone is important but He also calls us into a covenant journey with others. My wife (my single most important covenant partner) has been a great stabilizing and encouraging force in my life. She keeps me balanced. She is the one I come home to, she knows me better than any, and she has great discernment. If it were not for her, I would be a parakeet with no perch from which to chirp. Our children and their spouses are our covenant partners as well because their lives add to our journey. Now as adults, they are like super-friends to Jennie and me. Oh, and let me tell you about our grandkids…
My Christian brothers and sisters in my local fellowship, as well as the many scattered near and far in the world; teach me, pray for me, and encourage me to keep going with Jesus all the way to glory!
SORRY, NO PILL FOR YOU – I don’t really have a pill but I do have a formula. It is those four simple yet hard-to-do-consistently disciplines. So, if you take those on a regular basis you will be a world changer. It will change your world, those in your family, and perhaps, an even larger portion of the world. GULP! I’m glad you took the first dose, please don’t skip a dose but if you do; just pick up where you left off!!
My Prayer: Lord, please help me to stay consistent in your Word and in prayer. Sometimes, I let the busyness of life steal the important things but I want to be consistent in my walk with you and those who I am in covenant with on this journey of life.
Harry L. Whitt