2 Words in 1
Don’t give up on the Body
On the way to an appointment, I was just scanning the car radio, looking for some news. Only by chance, I ran across a Christian talk show; the brother was interviewing a widow lady. It seems her husband had been an avid sportsman and had played the game with many friends; some from their church. Men and wives fellowshipped together, having meals at one another’s house, watching the Super Bowl.
Her husband contracted a terrible disease and became wheel chair bound. She said the visits from their friends, began to fall off. He later died, and the visits stopped altogether. She was alone. She talked of how she had always thought these were her friends; she said they weren’t. She talked about how she had to forgive them, and find new people who really cared. Another lady called in. She had a mentally handicapped son; everyone was always very supportive; especially people from her church. The son, somehow began to take street drugs; and he had committed suicide.
All of these people, left her. She had no one anymore. Nobody called or came by to help her; even family. She said, people made some of the most horrible comments to her; even church people. She had done her best; it hurt a lot; she was devastated. A young woman called in. She was broken all to pieces. She was engaged to a fine young man; they went to church together, already bought their home; had great plans. Just before they were to be married, he was killed in a very terrible automobile accident.
Afterwards, everyone stopped coming; people had nothing to say to her. Her own church people, were not true friends. She said what saved her, was that God sent people to her, who were totally outside her regular circle and from out of the clear blue; from the most unexpected sources she ever imagined. She was yet so sad and hurt; the people she trusted, were not there. The talk host said something to her, that I will never forget. First he encouraged her not to give up on the church. He then said, that whether she went to another church or to just a home meeting with others, not to “give up on the Body;” meaning the Body of Christ. I heard what he said.
Many of us, have found out along our journey, that the Body of Christ, has a lot more members, than just the group or fellowship we once hung with. What happened to these people on this show, has happened to many of us. We found out who our true friends and those who loved us, truly were. The host, had experienced all of this in his own life. He said for those folks, to look around them; next door, across the street, on the job etc. That there were people everywhere who needed someone to understand and reach out. Christ has a real Body; they are not a building. They reside, in Him.
From Such, Turn Away
The Spirit, reveals things to us; when it’s time and when we can digest it. For example, if He were to share with us, some of the things concerning the last days, He might just wait, until those days are actually here. It’s likely, those things would not mean as much if we had addressed them before; perhaps, they make more sense now. Paul was very serious about these days; the word perilous, was chosen well.
My attention was drawn to a line toward the end of the description, of how people would be acting in this time. After describing all of these perils, and all of them being about how people would act, he finishes up with a very powerful statement we’ve all read. “Having a form of godliness.” When he made this comment, just who was he referring to. Could it be, that he had always been talking about the same kind of people, he was just referring to. In days gone by, we would never have thought or believed, he might be speaking about people who were supposed to be in our kind of church.
Of this time, writers talked about people being deceived. Christ even spoke of those who would stand before Him one day, and although they had done great things in His name, He never knew them. I am pressed hard to talk about what many are seeing today; lovers of themselves, unthankful, a love for money, loving pleasures more than God, fierce, boastful, loving entertainment, can’t control our tongue, callous and hard-hardhearted. And these, could have a form of godliness; but denying the power that goes with it. It seems, that would be the most perilous or dangerous thing of all.
What does the word “godliness” really mean. It means, having a great reverence for God. To be godly, means, obeying and revering God; coming from God. If we choose not to follow the leading of the Holy Ghost, we can not be godly . If our way, is more important than what the Spirit wants, we are not showing forth godliness; we couldn’t be. Trying to control the Spirit, or suppress His gifts, is not revering the Holy Spirit of God. Godliness has always been, much more than just about our theology or our list of rules.
According to this reading, we are to turn away from such things; and also from those who act in such a manner. That is the dilemma some of us are facing today; we know what we see, and we see how people are doing the very things Paul talked about here. Leaving our first love, has had some very serious consequences. Men’s programs, our stage performances, and all our clever operations, are not godliness; it’s powerlessness. We must turn away from such, and back to seeking and demonstrating the perfected power of the Holy Ghost; only following the Spirit; the way that He leads.
~ Robert Blackburn