When I was in junior high my English teacher had a quote on her wall which read, “Your Aptitude is only as good as your attitude.” For three years, I stared at that quote and never fully understood it. It was not until the last couple of years until I began to understand what she was teaching us. My attitude in life will directly affect my success in life. Sadly, many Americans today do not get it. Our attitudes are in a state that ultimately will spell disaster for our lives. In a word, we are lazy. We want everything either done for us or at the very least done quickly. We have become a microwaved society. We have all sorts of gadgets and gizmos that make what work we do even easier so that the effort we need to put forth is even less. We have fad diets that encourage us to work less to achieve a desired goal. What frightens me more is that as Americans become more and more reliant upon these things which allegedly improve our lives, Christians following suit. Rather than going out there and doing the work that is needed to be done, many rely upon the “microwave” to do it for us.
Attitude not Gadgets Does Christianity have its gadgets? Absolutely. Many churches measure their growth only by numbers. They believe that as long as people are coming to church that is all that matters. They will use whatever gadgets, gimmicks and gizmos they can to convince people to come to their church. Fellowship halls, free groceries, and multimedia centers all look good to the eye of man., but the church is not in the business of pleasing man. We were called into service to save souls. Christ, the head of the body, the church, stated that his purpose was to seek and save the lost. This purpose is also the purpose of the body. In fact, such thinking reminds me of Gen. 3. Satan tempted Eve and convinced her that not only was the forbidden fruit good to the eye, but that it was also good for the body. Eve was cast out of the Garden and Satan was forever known as the father of lies. When the church uses things that are not authorized and things that look good to the eye of man, the church plays the role of Satan for they convince man that this form of religion is good to the eye and good for the soul. In the end, both will be kept out of God’s true garden in heaven. Furthermore, many types of gadgets and gizmos have been created in hopes to make a job easier. However, these tools alone will never get the job done. If you purchase a power saw to aid you in building a deck, will the deck be built if YOU never work at building the deck? No. Such are the tools we have in evangelism. Bulletins, tracts, radio programs, and websites are all useful tools in building a church. But, they are just that, tools. Unless the workers actually go to work, the tools are useless. Just as the letter U appears in “Soul Saving,” You need to make an appearance as well! Honestly, how many of us were taught the truth by a tract, website, radio program or bulletin alone? How many of us were taught Christ because someone else took it upon himself or herself to share Christ and his good news. The truth is, the Bible pattern has always intended for the individual member to get involved in the Lord’s vineyard. Let me put it like this, when we read James 1:27 and see that “Pure and undefiled religion in the sight of God is this, to visit widows and orphans …” we often make the statement that visiting widows and orphans is NOT just sending them money. It is NOT sending money to special homes. We understand this passage to mean that we are to be involved with them and ensuring that their needs are met. When it comes to evangelism, we need to have the same attitude. Evangelism is not just mailing a bulletin, or telling someone about the radio program or the website. Every occasion of evangelism in the scriptures found one person, a teacher, teaching someone else about Christ. USE the tools but do not think that the tools will get the job done without you wielding them. “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach, except they be sent? As it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!” (Rom. 10:13-15). Notice Paul did not write, “Hand them my letter to be taught.” He did not write, “Give them a copy of Mark.” Paul wrote that someone needs to do the teaching in order for a person to hear and believe. Have this attitude in you, “I need to be that someone. I need to be a teacher of the Gospel of Christ.” Your Attitude In the end, this bulletin will only do you good if you let it. The world’s attitude will lead to spiritual decay. If you exhibit this attitude in yourselves, you are destined for an eternity of punishment. Paul once wrote, “Come out and be separate (II Cor. 6:17).” I tell you the same. Do not be like the world. We each need to look at ourselves and determine whether or not we have the right attitude. Do not seek to justify yourself, but seek to be just. Do not write a checklist of deeds you have accomplished, but rather ask yourself, what more can I do. -WTK
Grinnell church of Christ
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