I don't know about you, but the nice weather we had last weekend really got me fired up for summer! I found myself looking up places to go camping around Oregon. This summer when I get a rare day off at the berry plant I want to be ready to take off and have some fun with my family. I'm thinking about kayaking, or back packing, or mountain biking....things of that nature.
But there was a phrase I kept coming across in my online searches for campgrounds and activities in nature. That phrase was "Leave no trace."
When we go into the wild now, we are being urged to "leave no trace." Leave no sign that we've been there so that the next people to come along can enjoy the outdoors the same way you do. I'm all for it. I think it is a good plan. In fact, I think it is a little sad that we must campaign so hard to get people to take care of the land. It should be common sense. We should all live by the "leave no trace" ideal when it comes to the outdoors.
But sadly, too many christians are living by the "leave no trace" policy when it comes to everyday life. We are here to make an impact. We are here to make a mark. We are here to spread the love of Jesus around which changes hearts and changes lives. But too many of us are "leaving no trace".
I wonder why?
Okay, I can hear the grumbles already. Some of you probably quit reading already because you've heard this before and here comes a big ol dose of christian guilt. That's not what I'm about. In fact if you feel guilty STOP! Don't feel guilty. No shame here. But you should ask yourself, "Why"?
If we have the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ, and we have faith in Him and we know our future is secure in heaven, why are we not the happiest, kindest, most loving people on the earth and why are we not sharing that with others on a regular basis?
Can I suggest that perhaps the good news, the saving knowledge,is just that. It is knowledge, but it hasn't penetrated our hearts.....at least not fully.
And there is other stuff at work here as well. Let's give the devil his due. He is the great deceiver. And he has been pretty effective at masking and twisting, and distorting the truths of the gospel. The world we live in, our flesh (some call it the sin nature), and the devil have all put a spin on things and the result is confusion. And much of the beauty of the gospel has been lost.
We need Jesus. We need all of Him. And we need Him to do what he said he came to do.
-Seek and save the lost!
-Heal the broken hearted and set the captive free!
-Reveal Truth! Fill us with the Spirit of Truth! (Holy Spirit)
-Give us life and life to the full! Both now and in the age to come.
-Grant us power over the evil one!
-Replace our heart of stone with a heart of flesh!
-Make us dead to sin and alive in Christ!
Friends, that is what we need. And we need it daily. At least every other day, I mean c'mon. Jesus says he stands at the door and knocks. And if anyone hears him knocking and asks him in, he will come in and fellowship with us. Notice it doesn't just roll in on a platter. There is something we must do. We need to hear the knock, open the door and invite him in. I'm not talking about the salvation prayer here. I'm talking about fellowship with our Creator. Inviting him in to do all the things He said He came to do for us. We need to deeply know, and understand his love for us. When that penetrates us at the level of our soul, then we can't help but leave our mark.
In fact, we'll probably start blazing trails!
If you want to seek God on a whole new level with some other men. I invite you to join us on the "Faith in the Field" men's campout June 25-27. You can find out more about this event and others by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Thanks for reading!