Saturday, July 26, 2008

The Language of the Cross

As a Christian, speaking the same language (and I don't mean just the native tongue) sets the foundation of our close relationships. If we say we have Christ, is it manifest in what we say and do to others, or how we treat others as we live daily before the cross? Our prideful self prevents us at times, from giving ourselves and our talents in the right spirit in service to others, or worse, portioning out the love we feel is appropriate, because we feel that justice is being served.

At the end of the day, the Athenians who spent all day on Mars Hill debating everything, from the dropping of leaves to the newest bent of theology, went home empty and no more ''smarter" than they were when they got there. At the point that tickling the ears, even when the content is correct, takes precedence over daily application of the Lord's will in our lives in dying to ourselves, then repentance and correction are in order. It's better to know a little and apply it deeply and fully than to know a lot and apply nothing.

I suppose the questions that must be asked are: what part does the sin of pride play in anything that we do or anything that happens to us? Are we any different in that we mask this sin in our search for wisdom, truth, and yes, even love, and what language are we really speaking to each other? There are so many who talk a big talk, can pipe on eloquently about every jot and tittle of theology, but whose lives are void of any working of the Spirit. The daily walk of obedience is missing. The love for the Christ of all the theolgy has grown cold. And the life of dying to self has become a life of living for self and self alone.

Our daily lives are to be filled with thinking of the other as more important than ourselves, dying to the ungodly reactions that come on us suddenly, and living in Christ and in the Spirit rather than our flesh. It is heaping coals of kindness on the heads of those who treat us rudely and uncharitably, as well as our enemies. This is the language that digs deep even when two people aren't speaking the same "language." The language of the Cross calls us to take great care of how we treat others. It doesn't mean we succomb to being a doormat for those whose sinful, selfish behavior refuses correction, but it does mean that we cover with love the sins of those who show the pattern of humility and selflessness in seeing their own sin and quickly seeking forgiveness. This language flies through barriers. The language of the Cross is a language that makes good communication possible.

In Christ's Love,


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