“Wind & Waves” Part 13

Wind & Waves
You Gotta Read This! (YGRT!)
“Even the wind and the waves obey Him!” Matthew 8:27
“Refusing to properly listen to God’s Word is as foolish as refusing to eat. What would you think if I told you I wanted to become physically strong, but I stubbornly refused to eat? What if I said becoming strong was a top priority in my life, but I thought eating was a waste of time? You’d probably think I was a little nuts! You’d think if I didn’t eat I was going to become weak. That same principle is true spiritually. You can’t become spiritually strong apart from a steady diet of God’s Word. Yet one of the reasons many people can’t overcome their problems is just this basic: They refuse to feed themselves God’s Word
. Our churches are full of weak, malnourished Christians who claim they want to become strong but never seem to get there. The reason? They are starving spiritually. The sad thing is that most of them are doing it to themselves. They are spiritual anorexics. Just take a look at the lackadaisical attitude believers often have toward the preaching of God’s Word. Many view preaching as a “take it or leave it” matter. They don’t view careful listening as an urgent task. If they make it to church, they make it; if they miss, they miss. If the pastor is interesting, they’ll listen; if they’re tired, they’ll fall asleep. They don’t eagerly anticipate the preaching of God’s Word. Instead, they just try to endure it, hoping their pastor gets finished in time for them to see the beginning of the big game (or get to lunch). They view the sermon as a good opportunity to think about what they have to do when they get home. They don’t think about the message until the pastor starts to preach, and they don’t think about it again after the sermon is completed. Yet the Bible makes it clear that preaching is one of the primary means by which the Holy Spirit promotes spiritual growth in the life of the believer (see 1 Timothy 1:5; 4:6, 13; 5:17; 6:2; 2 Timothy 2:2, 15; 4:1-2; Titus 1:9; 2:1, 15; 3:8). Paul considered the preaching of God’s Word an essential tool for promoting spiritual maturity – which means he considered properly listening to God’s Word a basic requirement for spiritual growth. Therefore, saying you want to become strong spiritually and refusing to properly listen to God’s Word (or to attend church as much as you should and could) is as foolish as saying you want to become strong physically and refusing to eat.” God’s Solutions to Life’s Problems: Radical Change by the Power of God, by Dr. Wayne Mack & Joshua Mack, 2014, $12.99. A Devotional Manual/Workbook for Spiritual Growth.