[PC-USA] 1998-07-03 - Saltiness

Jesus' Difficult Teachings, Part 17

This is a continuation of Saltiness from 98-06-26.

So what do we do if we have lost our saltiness, lost our vibrant walk with Christ, when we don't seem to be making a difference in our worlds? Often when we are not making a difference in our world not being salt and light, it is because our walk with Christ has stagnated, or we have drifted from Him. Here are some suggestions - some which have worked for me personally and some which have worked for others.

  1. Change your Bible-reading habits. Sometimes just changing the version we are reading can show us a different light on a passage. When you have been a Christian as long as I have - 26 years - to be frank, sometimes it's hard to find anything fresh or new in something I have read up to hundreds of times! But I have found that reading a passage in a different version - or even comparing several - and asking God to help me apply it to my own life, can reinvigorate my Christian study and walk.

    (2 Tim 2:15 NNAS) "Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth."

  2. Get involved with a ministry at your church. God intends us to be involved with a local church body. If you are like me, very active already at church, try something new, a ministry you have never been involved in. The new people and ideas can revitalize your service to God and your fellowman. Naturally you need to take into account your gifts. However, as I have written in a previous devotional, sometimes God wants us to move out of our comfort zones. Pray for discernment and ask mature Christian friends for advice if you are not sure what areas you might do well in. And then do it with gusto! Give it the effort you would an important project at work or in school.

    (Rom 12:7-8 NNAS) "if service, in his serving; or he who teaches, in his teaching; 8 or he who exhorts, in his exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness."

  3. Fellowship with Christian friends who will spur you on in your walk. If you have been blessed with someone(s) in your life who will hold you to high standards, realize that for the gift it is, and keep your heart open to what they have to say to you. They can be annoyingly right, but God can really use Christian friends to help us grow spiritually. Friendships such as these can provide support and accountability.

    (Heb 10:24-25 NNAS) "and let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, 25 not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near."

  4. Get involved in a Bible study with other Christians. It can be a group of anywhere from 2 to 30 - whatever benefits you the most. We should all study the Word on our own. But in group studies, we can reap the insights of others who sometimes think differently than we can. Even the teachers and leaders can learn from the students! Long-time Christians can learn from newbies. Sometimes y'all make us think - you ask us questions that keep us searching the Scriptures and learning, ourselves. And sometimes you have insights that we have either forgotten or that have never occurred to us!

    (Acts 2:42 NNAS) "They were continually devoting themselves to the apostles' teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer."

  5. If you are not being fed at your local church, don't just let your walk stagnate. Talk to your pastor about it. Try a different Sunday school class. Go to a Bible study. If you just cannot get spiritually fed there, then pray for God to lead you to another church. God intends for us to grow up in the faith.

    (Eph 4:14-15 NNAS) "As a result, we are no longer to be children, tossed here and there by waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming; 15 but speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ,"

I hope and pray that one or more of these will work for you. If they do, I would love to hear about it.

Dear Father, please help us to retain or regain our saltiness. Help us be discernibly different from those who are unsaved. In Jesus' name, amen.