Take A Break From The World
Preston, Lee, and I spent the majority of our week down in Tampa for a Bible lectureship. I think I’m safe in writing on their behalf that it was an incredible, uplifting, and highly educational week. We made connections with old friends, made new ones, and felt the warmth and love of hundreds of brothers and sisters in Christ from all over the country (and some from around the world).
It was a week jam-packed with Biblical lessons, good meals, sunshine, and some of the best singing this side of heaven!
What happens when we come home from these kinds of experiences? Do we put the information into practice? Or do we hide the treasure under a rock? Do we bear fruit? Or do we stifle the implanted word with all the worries, cares, and distractions when we return to “normal life.”
Perhaps that term betrays a very common attitude! Think about the most spiritually uplifting environments and they are also often the most insulated. Small Christian colleges, VBS, summer camps run by brethren, and even our own local worship assemblies. We attend these kinds of events and institutions and forget that there is a great big lost world out there. We spend that amazing week at camp and forget that our mission is to teach the gospel to those who have not yet heard. We may even fall for the trap of hypocrisy, essentially becoming two different people -- the person I am at church or summer camp and the person I am at school or work.
If insulated spiritual environments are used for escapism, then they are not being used right.
To be clear, I have no criticism whatsoever for a Christian who goes to big events or joyfully attends the activities of his or her local church. No, my criticism is about WHY we go. We must view these relatively insulated environments as our opportunities to refresh and re-arm for the battles we need to be fighting. Every soldier is allowed a break. Every world-class athlete needs a spell every now and then. So it is with God’s people. We need to see a thousand people singing together. We need to be in a Bible-saturated lectureship. We need our local assemblies, Bible classes, and times of socializing. Not to escape from the world, but to be equipped to get out and save it!