Message for August 5, 2012 from Pastor Tim

In our society today, where everything is instant–instant coffee, instant rice, instant potatoes (yuck), it is easy to get into the mindset that everything should be so quick. We get upset if our fast food order isn’t ready at the window when we pull up after just ordering it 20 seconds earlier, yet we would not be satisfied if the food was substandard due to that same “speedy” service.
    In our Christian walk we often get in the same frame of mind, expecting to accept Christ, and suddenly we are “Sanctified and Holy”….Not So.  James 4:8 says, “Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.”  We do draw near to God when we call on the name of Jesus for our salvation, however; the road to sanctification doesn’t end there.  We do become a new creation in Christ yet the “Purifying of the heart” takes a bit longer.
    How many of you remember your first kiss, your first this or that?  You can probably remember what song was playing on the radio, where you where, and maybe even the date; so even though you are a new creation in Christ, there are things which we still hold in our memories.
    It reminds me of the story I’ve told before of a little boy pushing the lawn mower down the street, and the preacher asking what he planned to do with it.  He replied he was going to trade it for a bike.  Knowing the church had an old   bike in the shed but they needed a lawn mower, they made a trade.  The boy gladly rode off on the bike after assuring the minister that the bike worked.      After some time of yanking and pulling and a great deal of sweating the lawnmower did not start.   The boy soon rode the bike near the church where the pastor stopped him and said,  “Tommy, I thought you said this mower worked!”                  The boy replied, “Oh it does, you just gotta cuss it a few times.”  The preacher said, “Tommy, I am a man of God; I don’t even remember how to cuss anymore.”  The boy said, “Keep pulling that cord and it’ll come back to ya.”
    I know the story sounds funny, but the truth is unless we daily call on the Lord for the renewing of our minds as Romans 12:2 tells us, “ And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” Then you may indeed slowly slip back into the old habits you had before, or even never  changed.  This Christian walk is like that of a marathon runner.  Every step is closer to the goal, but we cannot sprint to the end.  We take one step at a time- asking God to mature us along the way. Christianity-Yes! Instant- NO!        Pastor Tim      

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