Wednesday afternoon greetings!
Lord's Day last we started out by reading 1 Peter 1:23-25 together with Pastor John:
23 For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God.
24 For, “All people are like grass, and all their glory is like the flowers of the field; the grass withers and the flowers fall,
25 but the word of the Lord endures forever.” And this is the word that was preached to you.
So, right away in reading this we learn that we need to think about the difference between stuff that is soon gone no matter how attractive, and that which lasts. Why? Because we must decide even now what we honestly care about the most, so that we focus our time and attention on it. I will lay it before you fellows right now - this is the reason why daily QT must be a priority.
Do you remember that Pastor John showed us on the big screen in Vision Chapel an island treasure map? Suppose we were a visitor to that imaginary island, just as we are all only visitors to this earth. Suppose in a contest we had the choice of taking for a prize a sum of money, or a larder full of food. How to choose?
If you are quite sure that you will soon depart the island, you will take the money, right?
But suppose you are in the same spot as all those school boys your age in that novel Lord of the Flies which I expect that either you have already read or you will soon read in your school English class. Situation: it looks like you will NEVER get off that island that your plane crash-landed on. So, what good is the money? Of course you will choose the larder full of food.
Pastor John also illustrated for us the question of values and choices by mentioning how many people playing various video games on-line enhance their abilities or image or whatever through buying “game skins” with... real money(!), and often times with lots of real money. Their choice to do so tells you a lot about WHAT THEY VALUE.
Pastor John then flipped back a page in his Bible and read from 2 Peter 1:16-19.
“we're not going by myths we're going by personal experiences.” This was Peter explaining how belief in Jesus Christ as Son of God becomes deeply rooted. Pastor John explained to us that the personal experience of the Christ, like he had, is far superior to Greco-Roman myths. But, Pastor John went on to tell us that experiences are not powerful, that the Word of God is where real power comes from. But power from the Word of God, the Bible, it is not just a matter of reading it. It is also absolutely necessary to think deeply about what you are reading in the Bible so that you measure your puny self correctly and reverently relative to God ALMIGHTY.
Cartoons were okay for you when you were little kids, but if we only have a cartoon view of the Bible our growth will be stunted. We must grow up, for sure we must grow in our faith.
If we grow in faith then we will have the right VALUES so that we make the right CHOICES. The goal is to be so filled with the Word of God through reading the Bible (daily) and thinking deeply about what we read that we no longer crave the things of this world, because our VALUES are elsewhere....focused on God.
Yes indeed! You fellows are not the cute little kids that you were just a short time ago. Not any more. Even now you all old enough to make these crucial value choices, and to act on them, day-by-day.