First Five Things

An awesome friend of mine had a great idea on his blog. He started a page entitled First Five Things and invited readers to submit the first five things they would tell a new believer.

Excerpt from his page – “I wondered one day. What would be the first five things I would tell to a new believer?  Then it hit me.  Everyone would have a different answer to this question.  So I started collecting them.  What would be your five?  And who else do you think I should ask?”

You can visit his blog HERE.

I encourage you to click on the above link and explore his blog. He has some amazing articles.

Here are my First Five Things:

1) Truly following Christ isn’t the pretty, safe, cushy, organized, perfectly packaged life that so many churches in America today are saying  it’s like. Following Christ is hard. Jesus said we are to die to ourselves daily and follow Him. That is the complete opposite of our human nature. We are born into this world with our own needs foremost in our minds. His wants and desires for our life need to come before our own. We need to be willing to give up our hopes and dreams if He tells us to. Doesn’t mean He will. We just have to be willing. Am I saying churches are bad? Of course not. We just have to be careful not to worship a pastor instead of our true Daddy.

2) Just because we accept Christ as our personal savior, it doesn’t mean our poo stopped stinking. We are, and never will be, better than anyone else. We are human, and we are going to fail miserably over and over. And guess what? That’s okay. Jesus allowed Himself to be barbarically murdered on that Cross, so we wouldn’t have to try and live a perfect life. He knew it was impossible for us to accomplish. He desires to have a relationship with us, dirty laundry and all. Besides, it’s in our moments of uncertainty and weakness where God reveals His amazing power and strength. Satan will constantly try and use the guilt over your sin to drag you down. You have to stand strong and keep punching him in the face.

3) Get out of your comfort zone. When we push ourselves to do things we wouldn’t normally want to do, God shows up. Big time. Don’t like to speak in front of people, and just don’t know what to say? Start talking, God will provide the words. Feel a nudging to give money to someone in need, but you’re afraid you can’t pay the bills? Give the money, God will provide for the bills. Nothing, and I mean absolutely nothing, is impossible for our God.

4) Don’t turn your Christian walk into a methodical, robotic set of rituals. Throw away the checklist that says you have to go to church, read your Bible, or pray a certain amount of times each day and during the week. All of those things are awesome, but not when it comes to a point where we feel guilty for not doing one of them. When we start trying to contain the Holy Spirit in a rigid set of habits, we are no better off than the Pharisees. Our relationship should not be with a book, a building, or a mantra we have to repeat on a consistent basis. Our relationship is with the Creator of the universe. Yes, of course read your Bible. But don’t let that knowledge become a replacement for the Holy Spirit. If you can’t memorize a billion verses, it’s all good. You now have the Living Word inside of you. Yes, go to church and fellowship with other believers. Just don’t forget that Jesus came for the sick, poor, lost, broken, dying, lame, prostitutes, drug dealers, murderers, pedophiles, and the homeless. Ones who would never set foot inside the four walls of a church. Get out there and be a light.

5) Finally, be Christ to others. He came to serve, not to be served. He loved the ones in society whom everyone else avoided. We are all learning as we go. No one has all the answers. If we could understand God, that would make Him no bigger than us. Why would we want to serve, and live for someone that small and puny? If someone tells you they have it all figured out, run the opposite direction. Don’t ever put all of your hope in a human. They will always let you down. Put all of your hope, trust, and faith in Christ. And don’t ever forget that you’ll never walk alone. He is always there.

Chris Martin

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