Reverse the trend

Good morning everyone,
 
Our theme for this month: “Fully Alive”
 
Our Bible verse for today: “When the Lord your God brings you into the land he swore to your fathers Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob that he would give you – a land with large and beautiful cities that you did not build, houses full of every good things that you did not fill them with, cisterns that you did not dig, and vineyards and olive groves that you did not plant – and when you eat and are satisfied, be careful not to forget the Lord who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the place of slavery.” 6:10-12. (CSB)
 
Our thought for today: “Reverse the trend”
 
In the book of Deuteronomy Moses was giving the nation of Israel their last-minute instructions before they were to go forward and take possession of the Promised Land. The blessings waiting for them were far beyond anything they deserved or had any right to expect. Moses’ concern was that once they got there, they would become a little too comfortable and begin to take their blessings for granted.
 
Of course, if you know your Biblical history then you know that the people proceeded to do the very thing Moses warned them not to do – they got too comfortable, they enjoyed their prosperity a little too much, and they slowly drifted away from the Lord.
 
We do the same thing. Life here in America is so easy compared to what it is for Christians in many other places around the world. And as a result, we American Christians tend to be less enthusiastic and less faithful in the practice of our faith, and less consistent in our church attendance, than are Christians in other places. Our blessings and our ease and comfort are becoming our downfall.
 
Considering the extent of our blessings, we should be more enthusiastic and more faithful than others, not less. But we’re not. And the problem is getting worse. Many Christians don’t read the Bible or even pray much. Church attendance is declining, even among those who consider themselves to be committed Christians their attendance is less consistent than in the past. And many of those who do attend are little more than spectators.
 
As a result, our churches are becoming progressively weaker. Many are closing their doors altogether. Many could not be described as being “fully alive”. Pastors and Christian leaders are searching for solutions, but competing with the subtle, mind-numbing, and spirit-deadening influence of ease, comfort, and affluence is difficult. And we are heading in the wrong direction. Every week the negative trend is impacting more Christians and more churches.  
 
I encourage all of us to redouble our determination to be enthusiastically faithful to the God who has blessed us so richly. Make fewer excuses. Be more faithful in all aspects of the faith. Obey the Fourth Commandment (remember the Sabbath). Don’t be lukewarm or unfaithful. Let’s all do our part to reverse the trend.
 
God Bless,
Pastor Jim
Copyright © 2021 Oak Hill Baptist Church, All rights reserved.

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