Friday, August 23, 2013

Live or Die Man!

As a youth pastor, I see a lot of pettiness in the church and among believers. Truth be told, I see just as much of it in the youth themselves as I do in their parents and grandparents.

We slam adults for arguing about hymns vs choruses, words in a hymnal vs words on a screen, or the wearing of a tie vs the wearing of anything not resembling a noose. But the same stuff happens in the youth group. Only here it is played out in things like pizza vs tacos, camps vs mission trips, or the value of a full goatee on a balding youth pastors head.

I may have made that last one up. No one argues about the value of a goatee. If you're lacking hair in top, you have got to grow it somewhere to avoid that much skin with nothing to break it up.

I digress.

People, no matter the age, still get worked up over their preferences. But it seems to me that Paul addresses this way back when he write Romans, specifically the fourteenth chapter.

7 For we don’t live for ourselves or die for ourselves. 8 If we live, it’s to honor the Lord. And if we die, it’s to honor the Lord. So whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord.      ~Romans 14:7-8.
If the punk karate instructor from Karate Kid had been a good Christian man, he might have quoted these verses when Miyagi asked him, 'Live or die, man?' If he had, I bet Miyagi would have been too stunned to tweak him on the nose.

Yet Paul writes it as if the Christians on Rome were already living that way. My hunch is that, if they were, Paul would have been talking about something else. Either way, I think it serves as a good reminder and goal for us. Whatever we do should be done for God's glory.

Its even more important considering Romans 14:9. "Christ died and rose again for this very purpose—to be Lord both of the living and of the dead."

That sounds an awful lot like a purpose statement to me.

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