On life’s issues, Scripture trumps Google every time
“Three little words, eight little letters that simply mean, I Love You”
– Duke Ellington/Harry Ruby
When I surf the web, my computer’s Internet browser goes to a well-known, ‘fair and balanced’ news website – I guess because I am a news wonk – and I find it somewhat curious. For instance, this morning I read that there is a conservative party leader in Great Britain who says that if elected, he’ll blow the lid off of all the UFO secrecy – that’s his platform, hmmm. – Found out about it there.
But the reason I tell you all of this is that often times I see captions for articles like this: “Eight Ways To Be More Effective in Life” – it would be interesting to read I guess, but it’s usually beside some lurid article about Lindsay Lohan or Paris Hilton, and that is a click away from ‘Dangerville.’ So instead, let’s look at the book of 2 Peter to find Eight keys to be More Effective and Productive in Life (2 Peter 1:5-8). Scripture is so much better than Google.
1. Faith – is the first and primary key of the Christian life. God does not call us to a blind faith. Logic can point us to the hand of a Creator, but we all must admit that it is a step of faith to place your whole-hearted trust in Him. He knows and desires that.
2. Goodness – is the next add on. It really should be a daily fixture in our life to have goodness about us. Surround ourselves with what is right and pure. Another reason not to go to “Dangerville” as earlier mentioned.
3. Knowledge – the Lord of the Universe presented us with a manual for daily living. It is His Word and, as Christians, we must immerse ourselves in it. Plus, be informed followers – read other books, and always prove its claims using Scripture as a benchmark.
4. Perseverance – In other words, stay with it. I think of all the good saints that I have seen get disheartened from their ministries, to finally let it go when the going gets too rough. Persevere, trust me the payoff is awesome.
5. Self-Control – One thing that separates us from other creatures is our ability to control ourselves. However, if you hear the news anymore, self-control is a virtue that is drying up all over the world. Let’s look upon it as a privilege that we share as believers.
6. Godliness – Be holy, for He is holy! We see that phrase in both the Old and New Testaments. Ephesians 4:22 tells us to take on a “God-fashioned life.” Christ calls us to be like Him.
7. Brotherly-kindness – At first, I wondered why this was after godliness in this passage. Then I figured out, sometimes the idea being truly godly is the adoption of a monastic lifestyle that is better cultivated by isolation. But, there is no better test for a God-honed lifestyle than placing it in the mix of family, church and the world – to test it and strengthen it, which leads us to:
8. Love which is truly the-end-all, be-all of our faith. Our love for Jesus, our love for family, our love for friends, and our love for our enemies – this is the greatest of the famous 1 Corinthians “Big Three” Faith Hope, and Love.
Memorize these eight, and follow them to lead a truly dynamic and effective lifestyle of worship. (John Francis is the worship specialist for the Missouri Baptist Convention and produces MoWorship, a monthly worship podcast available at www.mobaptist.org/worship.)