Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Don't Do it Yourself

Romans 8:12-14

“So don’t you see that we don’t owe this old do-it-yourself life one red cent. There’s nothing in it for us, nothing at all. The best thing to do is give it a decent burial and get on with your new life. God’s Spirit beckons. There are things to do and places to go!”

I did some plumbing once for my Grandfather, who is a Baptist Minister. I had no idea what I was doing. I had a new plumbing book, a blowtorch, and some other random tools and set out to replace an outside faucet. I failed miserably. When Granddad heard me “cussing the pipe” under the house he started laughing at me. I didn't hear him, because of the cavernous echoes of my own obscenities from the lonely crawl space. When I emerged from the underworld of the soul killing doom, covered in mud, and with torched fingertips and a bad attitude, he simply smiled at me and said, "Robert, you can't be a plumber and a Christian at the same time!" So true, if Christianity is about not cussing, moral perfection, or following the law perfectly, then I can’t be a plumber and a Christian at the same time.

We also can't be religious, trying to earn God’s favor by our own works and effort, and be Christians at the same time either. The notion that we can save ourselves or "Do it ourselves," needs to die a quick death. There are some projects that I must call a plumber for, because that skill is beyond me. When it comes to our sin dead life, it is God Himself who we must lean on and call out to. It is God's Spirit that we trust will call us, and save us, and make us new. God will do it. We cannot.

There is nothing for us in a “do-it-yourself spirituality.” We are doomed to failure if we go that route. We must die to ourselves and awaken to God's Spirit beckoning life. God has a plan and a purpose for us. There are places He would have us go and missions that He will equip us to fulfill. We owe the flesh, ourselves, nothing at all.

Giving plumbing and religion a funeral and getting on with new life by God’s grace, power, and strength!


Scripture Cited

Peterson, Eugene H.: The Message : The Bible in Contemporary Language. Colorado Springs, Colo. : NavPress, 2002, S. Ro 8:12-14

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