Faith Blog

ARE YOU BEING FRUITFUL?

Jesus tells us in Matthew that those who believe in him should "bear good fruit."  I hear that phrase thrown around a lot lately, particularly in the context of political figures that may or may not be faithful Christians.  But I think we need to turn that phrase inward and look at what the fruit in our own lives is.  Paul says in his letter to Titus that "Our people must also learn to engage in good deeds to meet pressing needs, so that they will not be unfruitful."  

 

A hard question I've asked myself recently is "What am I doing to alleviate human suffering?"  If we honestly examine Jesus' ministry, it becomes pretty clear that we have a responsibility to do that because it was one of the most frequent things he did.  If we profess to love Christ and believe His teachings then the unfathomable love He blessed us with cannot end with us and must go out into the world.  I believe sharing that love necessarily needs to be in the form of serving people's physical and emotional needs, not just their spiritual needs.  One of my favorite quotes is "you can't cure the alcoholic by taking the alcohol out of the kitchen, but that doesn't mean you don't take the alcohol out of the kitchen."  I think that can also be reconstructed to, you can't cure the poor by putting food in their kitchen, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't put food in their kitchen.

 

Posted by J.T. Nanney with

LIVE QUESTIONABLE LIVES

What does it mean to live a questionable life? Michael Frost, in his book, Surprise the World, explains “We need to be propelled outward, into the lives of our neighbors, but also upward, into deeper intimacy with Jesus.” In Titus 2, Paul also describes living questionable lives that inspire our neighbors to ask, “Why do you live the way you do?”

Older men: endure with love, temperance, self-control and live worthy of respect. Older women: be temperate, encouraging and teach what is good. Young women: love your families, be pure, self-controlled and honor the Lord. Young men: act with good deeds and good speech as your goal. This questionable life is also seen at work. Employees must do their best to promote their business in word and action.

Ok. The bar is high. How do we live this questionable life? Jesus! Jesus enables us.  Titus 2:14 “He gave us His life to free us from every kind of sin, to cleanse us, and to make us His very own people, totally committed to doing good deeds.”

May Jesus empower us to live outward and upward so that our questionable lives surprise the world!

 

Posted by Steve Sague with

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