Thursday, February 19, 2009

The Gospel Snowman

I don't get to build snowmen much anymore...moving away from PA to the deep South took care of that. But in one sense I am building snowmen every day. Oh, and by the way, so are you, even if you live in Florida. If you've ever built a snowman, the perfect shape is very illusive. The perfect shape of the head, the trunk, the lower body, all in proportion,'s almost impossible unless the snow is perfect! The same challenge presents itself to every follower of Christ as we seek an integrated life. Some believers are spiritual snowmen/snow-women with big heads...they KNOW a lot of stuff ABOUT God or ABOUT the Christian life...but they may have tiny trunks (small, shriveled hearts) or they may have small "legs and feet" (no practical outworking of their faith on a daily basis). These followers of Christ are "brains on a stick," (and in some cases their heads roll off and break on the ground!) Other believers have a large trunk...big hearts but lack any sound theology to ground their passion. Sometimes this reveals itself in a very emotionally-driven faith that is based more on existential feelings than truth. In addition, Christian "snowpeople" of this type tend to be so consumed with seeking new spiritual/emotional experiences, that engagement with the real world, ie, fighting injustice and evil, is often lacking. Then there are snowpeople of the church that are known to be great activists. They have a large "base," but their hearts can be small and their brains can be disengaged. These people tend to be doers, but there may not be anything distinctively Christ-centered about their activism. When it comes to the gospel, we are to seek God for the grace to make us integrated Gospel Snowmen/Snow-women. Only Christ can make His Church into pefectly proportioned, perfectly shaped gospel creations. We need the power of the Spirit to enable us to love the Lord our God with all our heart and all our mind and all our soul and all our strength. We need sharp minds that know the Scriptures and can apply them wisely. We need hearts deeply in love with Christ and moved with compassion toward the world. We need arms and legs that move us to engage the world with our faith in practical ways, bringing mercy and justice to a broken and hurting world as well as bringing the saving message of the Gospel to the lost. So, the next time your reading Scripture or listening to a sermon or attending a Bible study...listen as a snowman! How is the Father calling you to develop a truly Christian mind? How do you need to challenge your thinking with the truth? Or, what is being revealed about the Gospel that you need to believe with all your heart? How are you supposed to feel about the Lord or about sin or righteousness or the needs of the world? Or, as you read and listen, what do you need to go out and DO in the Name of Love? The perfect snowman, whether in the snow or in the church, is still relatively illusive. Perhaps the best we can hope for is a personal awareness of where we are are misshapened and disproportional...and look to the Savior to continually remake our lives by His grace.


Jennifer said...

YOur blog is really helping me piece together my Identity - I want to be an Illusive Dangerous, SNOWMAN! Strangley, I can really apply that. Really, I am loving your blog.

Amy Mac said...

How interesting...this is what I've been trying to say to myself all week. And you just said it so well. Huh. Thanks, Bob!