Religion vs Life


I just had to repost here. I hope it has meaning to someone.

http://geppy.gephart.info/2008/02/religion-vs-life.html

I am currently involved in a discussion on something called syncretism. Truthfully, I had never heard the word before so I had to start by looking up the definition. It has something to do with the combination of religious practices from various religions into your own religion. Basically the discussion started out with (1) if it was right to do, (2) if the LORD would accept such worship, and (3) examples in the Old Testament of Israel doing just that.

So, not only did I not know the word but even after reading the definition I just don’t accept that syncretism matters. Syncretism is a discussion of religion, and we are not called to a religion but a life style. The LORD did not ask us to worship him by a specific religion, but with our whole heart and with all our might. So, we are not asked to worship a specific way; we are asked to give him everything – all that we are and all that we do. If we worship in this way (with everything), then the outward form of worship (religion) will be correct no matter what its style is.

So, for a personal story – which I have not shared often; but it relates to other discussions I have had recently too. When I was graduating from high school and getting ready to go to college I suffered from some depressive thoughts and thoughts of suicide (though I was too cowardly to ever act on them – thankfully). But one night the LORD stepped in and did something to “fix” these thoughts. He showed me the concept of what he wants. That night, I died and Jesus came to life – in a sense. Of course I did not physically die, but the LORD became all in all to me. Everything that I did now became whatever he would want from me.

This of course doesn’t mean that I didn’t fail; didn’t sin. Even the Apostle Paul continued to sin. But the joy of it is that it is no longer I that am sinning, but the old sinful nature that exists within this frail body. But someday, HE will rectify that. When Jesus comes back to establish the kingdom this old, frail body will be gone and I will have a new body that exists without a sinful nature! Life will be perfect. Creation will be perfect. Nature will be perfect. The Kingdom of Heaven will be here – upon this planet to which we belong.

So with this thought beginning in my soul and growing thru my entire being, how could the depression not shrink and shrink and shrink. There is nothing, absolutely nothing depressive about this promise. And I will be there; I will participate in this promise. I will finally be able to do whatever my soul desires; no longer a slave to the ways of this world. I am a citizen in the Kingdom, not of the world empires.

So, instead of worrying about what this world does to me (which it still does; that is life) I look for what Jesus can do thru me today. Whether it be speaking the words that he would have me say, or to do things that make others able to focus just slightly more on the Kingdom and worry less about today, or to give money and resources to those who need it. This is Kingdom life.

To remember that this world and its ways are not my home. This planet is my home, but not the world that the deceiver rules. Jesus will put an end to those world ways and restore our world to this planet. To practice the ways of my world within this world, that is to bring the Kingdom of Heaven to earth. That is what we are all called to do.

Arguments about religion and words are not of my world. Worrying about if someone has been disrespectful is not of my world. Pointing out the sins and faults of others is not of my world. My world is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. My world is the forgiveness of others sins and faults. My world is one thing in and thru everything. My world is the LORD.

What is your world?