My eye caught sight of the red jewel encased in gold, dangling by thin gold chain hanging on the Vinnies rack. I fingered it, carefully and studied it as best I could whilst my toddler tried to throw the bracelets on the floor. Was it authentic? Not being an expert in jewels, how could I tell? For $1 I wasn’t going to leave it there, but to this day we haven’t been able to work out whether it is or not. Authentic Christianity is a bit like that.
A person we meet can glitter and shine and tell us all the right things, but we MUST check the fruit of their lives. Are they actually living what they are saying? Do they have a good track record? What do other people say about them?
And we need to check that we are authentic, or even may I say, ‘organic.’
The fruit of our lives need to match the Word of God. The Word of God that is pure without any additives. And to match the Word of God we must be reading the Word of God.
I liken reading the Bible to preparing a meal from scratch. It might take longer than a packet mix, but we are assured of no additives.
This year I’ve had to cook from scratch 100% of the time. I really thought I knew how to do this but health issues this year have taken it to a whole new level.
And there are times that a friend gives us a meal, and can I liken this to a Christian book, maybe?
They are great, and we overcome by the blood of the Lamb, and the Word of our Testimony.
Hearing the testimonies of others is so important in our walk as Christians, and I guess I like to ‘cook meals’ for others too; sharing my testimony here on this blog.
Rev 12:11 KJV
And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.
But I never want it to become a substitute for you reading your Bible, and famous Bible study leader, Beth Moore, says the same.
Don’t let your whole Christian walk be made up of ‘packet-mix’ Christianity. What we want and what others need to see is authentic Christianity.
I think sometimes God lets us write a Bible study for own benefit as much as others. Like that time I wrote out every reference to the word joy in the Bible. Yes, I turned it into a free printable here on the blog, but it has shaped me so much and how I view trials.
Image credit: Embracing the Lovely
Dig deep dear friend. Invest in a concordance. Search through the Proverbs and write them down, and it doesn’t have to be fancy. I’ve learnt so much by reading through a chapter of Proverbs each day for a month, and focusing on a theme, and every time you stumble across that word, writing it out on a little index card. I really explored the theme of discipline and diligence because it confused me that as Christians we can grow so little, but have a God who gives us so much favour. There’s a partnership there that has to be discovered and understood.
And if you’re confused by the Bible, ask the Holy Spirit to come and teach you as He has promised. One of my favourite ways to allow this is to pray in the Spirit.
Allowing the Word to dwell in us richly (Col 3:16), this is our key to authentic Christianity. To being organic and living rooted.
God speaks to us through His Word and by not opening it we are cutting off vital communication. Of course He speaks through other methods, but hearing from God is not just about a voice.
We look in the mirror of God’s Word to see the amazing new man He is calling us to be.
So, go open your Bible, ask the Holy Spirit to be your teacher, and write down the one thing standing out to you. And if you need a Bible reading plan, you need only Google it or search Bible reading plans on Pinterest.