Be Alive!

“In the Netherlands, Christianity is dying and Islam is rising. The writing is on the wall.”
The article went on to quote the Archbishop of the Netherlands, “In 2028, when I will be 75 and will hand in my resignation, 8 or 10 churches will remain.” This means that in the next 10 years 270 Roman Catholic churches will be closed and either demolished or repurposed by their new owners.
Why? Secularization. The Dutch church going people allowed society to mold their thinking and character rather than Jesus. This led to an ineffective faith, which eventually led to a dead faith and to shuttered buildings that were once full of alive and vibrant Jesus followers.
A living faith comes from being connected to someone – Jesus, not something – a building or an institution (either Protestant or Roman Catholic). A living faith comes from listening to and following someone who is alive – Jesus, the Living Head of His Church.
A living faith comes from loving Jesus through Spirit empowered faith choices to exercise the truths Jesus gives you in His Word. A living faith understands you don’t go to church, but are the church everywhere you go as you walk with other Jesus followers.
You, yes you, can have a living and breathing faith in Jesus. You, yes you, can be changed by this faith, which keeps your faith alive and vibrant. You, yes you, can share what Jesus has and is doing in you with others. As you do, Christianity will never die where you live.
Jesus said that He is the resurrection and the life. In other words, Jesus has a habit of making dead things come alive. Will you allow Him to make your life, your career, your marriage and/or family, your friends, your congregation, your world alive?

Be Transparent with Jesus

“Come to Me” – Jesus.
One author summed up Jesus’ statement like this, “If you want to know how real you are, test yourself by these words, ‘Come unto Me.’” A Jesus lover is transparent (Come to) with Jesus about what’s going on inside their heart and head.
They come to Him with anything and everything – big or seemingly small, significant or the not apparently important. The true test of our love, then, is what we hold back, not what we actually share.
Think about it. By not coming to Jesus, who are we really trusting? Ourselves. And, isn’t this what causes our insecurities? “Can I handle it? Can I get through it?”
The psalmist, however, said, “Blessed is the one who fears the LORD, who finds great delight in His commands (like, “Come to Me”). They will have no fear of bad news; their heart will be steadfast, trusting in the LORD.”
Bad news – life not going as you planned and/or thoughts tearing you down – can lead to insecurity. And yet, this passage states that when you trust Jesus enough to come to Him (rather than keep it to yourself) you get a backbone (steadfast means to stand tall)!
You can stand tall in the midst of the so-called bad news. Jesus can turn your insecurity into security by coming to Him with what’s going on inside you. He died and rose again to show His love for you. You can show your love for Him by passing the transparency test.