|Good Morning Everyone,|
Our theme for this month: “Think for yourself”
Our Bible verse for today: “Iron sharpens iron, and one person sharpens another.” Proverbs 27:17 (CSB)
Our thought for today: “Let’s challenge each other to think.”
I’m deeply grateful for those preachers, teachers, writers, mentors, and friends who God has put in my life who challenged me and pushed me to think for myself and to think deeply. By no means have I arrived. I’m very much a work in progress and I have a long way to go. But those people have helped me tremendously in my process of learning and growing.
I remember many long conversations with my pastor, Oren Teel, as he patiently trained me to assume increasing levels of responsibility in the church. He explained things, he encouraged me to ask questions, he challenged me to think things through, and he recommended books to read and Bible passages to study.
I’m grateful for seminary professors who pushed me to figure out not just what I believed, but why I believed it (and then to explain it to back to them). I’m grateful for the hundreds and hundreds of good Christian authors whose books I have learned so much from. Those books remain on my bookshelves today, filled with underlines and notes in the margins. And I’m grateful for the Christian brothers and sisters I’ve had the privilege to know over the years. They too have challenged me and pushed me to deeper learning. It really is true that iron sharpens iron and one person sharpens another.
Today I’m blessed to be the pastor of a church filled with deep thinkers who are serious students of God and His ways, as well as of people and of the world in which we live. Without even realizing it, they too encourage me to study hard, to think deeply, and to make sure that whatever I’m preaching, teaching, or writing, it is true and accurate. Because if it isn’t, I know they will catch it. Therefore, as I’m preparing, I’m well aware that I’d better get it right. You can’t just mail-in your sermon with this group!
When it comes to avoiding the trap of simplistic thinking, superficial childish faith, and dumbed-down easy-believe-ism, the best thing you can do is to surround yourself with people who refuse to be that way – because they won’t allow you to be that way either.
Iron sharpens iron and one person sharpens another. Let’s challenge each other to really think.
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