Friday, October 5, 2012

a Christian good-bye‏

This morning in My Utmost for His Highest I read the following:

Luke 9:61 - The person who says, “Lord, I will follow You, but . . .,” is the person who is intensely ready to go, but never goes. This man had reservations about going. The exacting call of Jesus has no room for good-byes; good-byes, as we often use them, are pagan, not Christian, because they divert us from the call. Once the call of God comes to you, start going and never stop.

I had never really pondered on this point before. When we say “good-bye” we usually mean, “See you later.” Maybe even add an alligator if you are more friendly and/or more Swamp-peopley. But the point Chambers is making is that it rarely, if ever, means “I will never be back this way again.” It usually means "Not yet.  I like my life."

As such, we say “good-bye” to carbs or to sweets or to Swamp People, but we do not mean “never again.” We mean, “until we meet again.”

Now there is nothing wrong with saying “until we meet again” to someone you will see tomorrow although I might suggest a more contemporary “see you later” or perhaps even a “peace out” if the situation warrants.  That is the correct sentiment to attach to the situation.

However, repentance and putting your face to the plow are not scenarios in which one can truly commit to endeavor with a heart and head half-committed. Yet many routinely say “good-bye” to sins they have no real commitment to mortify. It is a diet kind of "good-bye."  People like to go on diets to feel better about themselves. They abstain from something they like for a season in order to obtain a result they believe will bring them more joy than the thing from which they are abstaining. For example, I go a week without sweets because I believe that nothing tastes as good as skinny feels. 

Sweets < Lookin’ Sweet

Do not diet from sin.  Die to sin. Eliminate it from your mind and members inasmuch as the Spirit grants you grace, insight, humility, ability, perseverance, and patience to do so. But be sure to do so. Learn the true meaning of “good-bye.” Learn resolve, commitment and covenant and in doing so become more like Christ and more appreciative of Christ’s resolve, commitment and covenant on your behalf before God.

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