Thoughts, observations, scripture and other articles relating to Christianity and the Christian life.

Turn Your Head and Cough…

I had to goto the doctor to get a physical recently.

Yeah, one of THOSE physicals.

The older I get, the more comfortable I am getting them.  Maybe I appreciate more that I need to take care of my body or maybe it doesn’t bother me as much to be naked in front of a stranger (not in a creepy exhibitionist way though).  Either way, it is even MORE important to get regular check up of our spiritual health.  Below is a list of things you might want to ask yourself about.  Most of these are biblically based, some are just my opinion, but I think all are helpful.

  1. Do you know the basics of your faith?  Do you know the nature of God?  Do you know what the “Trinity” is? Do you know HOW people are saved (Faith?  Works?  Both?)?  The doctrine of the Trinity and Salvation are essential to our belief.  If you don’t know the answers to these questions, or have a wrong answer, there is a very good possibility your soul is in jeopardy.
  2. Are you spending time in scripture?  Growing in your faith without bible reading or otherwise being exposed to God’s word is like trying to build muscle without lifting weights.  Sure, it MIGHT happen…but it ain’t bloody likely.  Like lifting weights and exercising, it also gets easier and more enjoyable the more you do it.  I didn’t care for it at first either, but now I feel great every time I do.
  3. Do you pray “without ceasing”?  Praying, to use a hip analogy, can be like using a cell phone.  There are two main ways to communicate via a cell phone: Talking or texting.  The “talking” kind of prayer is the all encompassing, summative prayer that I might do at night.  I say prayers for friends, family, students and coworkers to come to know Christ, safety for all, praises and requests.  These prayers can last anywhere from 3-15 minutes (or longer if something is really on my heart).  The “texting” type prayer are the really quick prayers that I might say throughout the day.  For example, if a student comes up and tells me a grandparent passed over the weekend, am I am in the hallway monitoring the kids, I might say a quick, silent “texting” prayer for comfort for the family, or something like that.  I take prayer requests seriously and it can be hard (especially when you see almost 200 kids a day) to keep up on all of the prayer requests that come to mind.  These texting prayers are great for a few resons; They keep our mind on God throughout the day, they keep us sensitive to the needs of others, and they also keep us from being overwhelmed with prayer requests during our “calling” prayers.
  4. Do you “keep you minds on the things above”?  It is impossible not to be preoccupied at all with worldly things, but I find the more I concentrate on Christ, the less I worry about day-to-day life, and the more I reflect his image (but believe me I am FAR from even a DECENT reflection of Christ).  When we start to realise that the mortgage payments will pass, the sinful temptations will pass and one day we will be face to face with Christ, things start to get in their proper perspective.
  5. Is Christ a fairytale or fact in your daily life?  Sadly, as told in Matthew, there will be people who profess Christ, but will be turned away because of their false faith.  I think these people who will be turned away largely treat Christ as a fairytale instead of fact.
  6. Can people tell there is something “different” about you?  Are you conforming to the world, or are you in contrast to it?  If we are known by our “fruits” or “deeds/disposition” are you growing delicious grapes, or sour apples?
  7. Is God at the top of your priority list?  I had an argument with a person close to me about this one time and it was one of the most difficult conversations I have ever had, but it resulted in a revaluation for that person and I have seen growth since then.  God is not A priority.  He is THE priority.  This does not mean that every moment of our lives should be spent in bible reading or prayer, but rather that his standards and expectations should permeate every aspect of our lives.  There is no aspect of our lives that is not accountable to God.  If God isn’t number one in your life, he might as well not be in your life at all.

Do you have some other items that you think should be added to this list?  What other things do you think should be in a “Christian Physical”?  I would love to hear your ideas.

-Neil

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