Friday, January 23, 2009

Risk-Free Religion

Last Sunday we began a four week study of the new little book Rich Toward God. It's got a lot of challenging and thought-provoking things in it's four short chapters. Every family has a copy and they are supposed to read the weekly chapter before coming to church on Sunday. I'm preaching a lesson that goes with that chapter. Last week I talked about Trusting God and I've been ruminating all week about one of my comments. I said, "There's no such thing as a risk-free religion." I guess the truth of that statement depends on your definition of religion. Still, I've been doing a lot of thinking about why we don't trust God, especially when He tells us things like "It's more blessed to give than it is to receive." We play with it, dabble with it, but seem to have a hard time really living it. Is it too much of a risk? Do we really think that we won't be blessed or do we think it's more blessed to receive than it is to give? Remember, there is no relationship without trust and there is no trust without risk. The very essence of faith is risk, but the goal is to grow in our faith to were we know that trusting in our Father is a sure thing. Okay, so we risk having problems with mankind, we risk not fulfilling the pleasures of the flesh, or we may even risk physical harm, but is it truly a risk if we KNOW God will take care of us, bless us, and bring us home to be with Him for eternity? My IRA is a risk. My tiny savings account at the bank is a risk. Staying healthy is a risk. Trusting in God who has always kept His promises and is incapable of violating His own Word - well, that's not much of a risk.
Yet I keep mulling around one challenging thought. Why are we willing to risk so much in the pursuit of pleasure and risk so little in the pursuit of holiness? Maybe our risk does define our religion.

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