May 11, 2021
We talk a lot in the church. We talk a lot about what we should do or what we could do. We talk a lot about what other people should do or should be doing. We talk a lot about reaching people for Christ. The problem is that we just talk. It’s time to quit talking and start doing.
“But someone will say, “You have faith, and I have works.” Show me your faith without works, and I will show you faith by my works.” James 2:18 CSB
The problem in our churches is that most of us talk a lot about spiritual things, but we just don’t do many things that are spiritual. We talk about prayer a lot and pray just a little. We talk about Bible Study, but only actually study the Bible a few minutes every week. We talk about helping others, but we don’t often help others. We talk about evangelism, but we don’t often share the Gospel.
Quit talking. Quit talking about other people. Quit talking about being a Christian.
Start following Christ.
Quit fixing things. Quit trying to fix things. Quit feeling guilty about what you did or didn’t do. Quit just showing up and going through the motions. Quit wishing you were a better Christian.
Start following Christ.
“Then he said to them all, “If anyone wants to follow after me, let him deny himself, take up his cross daily, and follow me.” Luke 9:23 CSB
To follow Christ means that you confess and turn from sin. That means you are willing to let go of your sins.
You don’t get to keep your sins.
Your lifestyle changes because your heart changes.
To follow Christ means you follow Christ. He is the Lord of your life and you begin the journey of letting go of yourself and letting Christ be in charge. Christ does not come into your life as just a partner to assist you when you need something. Being a Christian is not about making you successful. You surrender all and follow Christ. He is the Lord of your life, not your assistant.
To follow Christ means you let go of you.
Colossians 3:1-3 CSB
1 So if you have been raised with Christ, seek the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God.
2 Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.
3 For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.
The truth is that when you follow Christ you find yourself. You will only know the real you, the you that God created in His image, through Christ. Sin stole from us the relationship with God that is restored when we come to Christ. Following Christ brings us back into the eternal relationship that God wanted for us from the beginning.
The cure for your life is found in following Christ.
Do you want to be happy? Follow Christ.
Do you want peace and contentment? Follow Christ.
Do you want a better job? Follow Christ. (Same job - better you)
Do you want a better family life? Follow Christ. (Same family - better you)
Do you want a better church? Follow Christ. (Same church - better you)
All those things that are out of sorts in our lives will be sorted out when we follow Jesus Christ. In fact, all those things are out of sorts because we have not surrendered and followed Christ. When we let sin continue in our lives it poisons everything. We are ruined because of sin. We are redeemed because of Christ.
What happens when you follow Christ is that you become a better you. You are better because Christ leads you. You are better and everything and everyone else around will be seen by you through the eyes of Christ. You are better because of Christ. You are better because you have been converted from your old sinful self into a new creation. God made a new you that came into being when you trusted Christ. When you follow Christ people will quit seeing you and they will start seeing Christ in you.
Do you want to quit just talking about being a Christian? Then follow Christ.
Turn from sin (“God, I confess my sin and repent of it.”)
Trust in Christ (“Jesus, I ask you to save me and be the Lord of my life”)
Then follow Christ (“God, give me the faith to let go of myself and follow you with all I am”)
Romans 1:16-17 CSB
16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, first to the Jew, and also to the Greek.
17 For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith, just as it is written: The righteous will live by faith.
Philip Marshall, Pastor