Most Americans learned in school about Nathan Hale. He is said to have been a spy for George Washington’s Continental Army. Nathan Hale was hanged by the British during the waning days of the Revolutionary War. Nathan Hale is remembered for his famous quote, “I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country.” He helped blaze the trail to independence, but was prevented from enjoying the fruits of his labor.
Then, there was Moses. He led our ancestors in Christ out of bondage in Egypt, paving a way to the Promised Land. Moses was prevented from enjoying entry to the Promised Land.
An important aspect of our Christian heritage is Christian martyrdom. From the days of ancient Roman oppression to the modern days of violence against Christians, those who have been willing to stand up for Christ under the most severe conditions have done so with faith–and a hope that those who come after will enjoy a taste of that “Promised Land.”
A few days ago I completed reading the Christian Bible New Testament cover to cover for the fourth time in my lifetime. It has been several years since my last reading, and apparently, I have matured in my Christian walk and in life in general.
The pervasive theme that beaconed to me again and again was the theme of not being satisfied with just the bare knowledge, but how important it is to put my faith to work. That is what the Bible is about. Germinating the seeds that Jesus has sown is our hearts, and patiently experiencing the outpouring of blessings that come as these seeds flourish–truly becoming new creatures in Christ Jesus.
As I have grown in Christ over the years, I hope that I have been an influence on my family, friends and all others with whom I come in contact. I believe I have tried to truly reflect Christ’s mission on Earth.
There is much turmoil in our modern world, everything from terrorism, to earthquakes, to blizzards and floods. But through it all, Christ will prevail. Let us reflect His love and His strength.
The New Testament is not so much about our “behavior,” as it is about the internal growth that can change our behavior, helping to make us true influencers in this world.
We may not fully enjoy this movement toward the “Promised Land” in our own lifetimes, but perhaps, if we have grown and matured in Christ, those around us, and especially those we love will enjoy further progression toward the goal of a Christ-centered world.
Many people working in the mental health field have advised that if an individual is depressed, he ought to try to act like he is not depressed, perhaps learning to discard some of the depression.
It is the same with Christianity. If we currently do not feel the strength of Christ in our lives, perhaps we should act as though we do, teaching ourselves how to connect with God through Christ. (This is not dishonest. Our thoughts and behaviors can have a profound effect on releasing the barriers between ourselves and God.)
Have I been a little preachy? Perhaps, but while I try to avoid preaching, this is what came to mind today, and I figured I would just go ahead with it. Have faith.