John the Baptist gives his famous “He must increase, I must decrease” speech. How do I do this? I am praying and asking God to show me what this means today for me. I have a strong desire to do it. But some areas of my life seem completely entrenched. I have things I want to go away, and I want to hold on to for dear life, simultaneously. It’s tough. So, I’m reminding myself of this goal, and praying the Lord’s Prayer. A lot. I know God will be faithful, it’s just painful.
The second thing I’m working with is the idea of “whoever believes in the Son has eternal life”. I know, I know, simple, basic, 101 level theology. But I’m being pushed on what it means to be a believer, a follower, a disciple. Christ’s calls to discipleship are sky high. His parable of the soils is haunting me right now. Francis Chan and his book , Crazy Love, are just feeding the questions. (You REALLY should pick up this book!) So what does it mean to “believe in the Son”? What all does that entail. Does true belief, the size of a mustard seed, produce life change automatically? Does a person who claims faith, but lacks serious growth, only deceive themselves? At what level is growth real? At what level is it just self-help stuff?
I’m honestly not worried about myself, not because I’m so great or wonderful, but I know that I rely on Christ and need Him above all else. I can’t breathe if He doesn’t show me His grace and mercy every nano-second. I can be selfish and ungrateful, I sin, but I know that I am trusting Him for everything. But as a pastor, how do I gauge what we are calling people to? Especially students?
Anyway, that’s where I am today, in John 3.