RESET: Engagement

"What is a clean bathroom and who gets to define it?"

We hope you were able to join us in person or digitally yesterday for Pastor Steve's message. As we wrap up our RESET series, he led us through a conversation about engagement and shared this primo premarital question that he and Debbie ask their couples: "What is a clean bathroom and who gets to define it?". Maybe those are fighting words and anything bathroom related is a trigger for your marriage. It's quite likely that your answer is different than your spouse's, and that response is different from your neighbor's answer, which would then vary from what you've read in Joanna Gaines' design books or what you've see on Pinterest. You may also answer from a place of this is how I want to clean, rather than this is the actuality of how I clean. Regardless of how you answer, when you do answer you are now in a metaphorical camp and how you act or respond in that camp has the potential to shape the categories of your relationships.

Let's play this out. Paul, a New Testament Christ-follower, writes to the church in Philippi as he is in prison for preaching Christ. The moment he put his trust in Jesus, he entered a fundamentally different camp than the Jewish people at that time. He knew the punishment for preaching the Gospel. He understood the risk. He was aware of the cultural differences. Yet the acknowledgment of those differences and risks did little to stop his efforts to make Jesus known and by doing so he was imprisoned. The prominent sin nature of pride, arrogance and anger could have been at the forefront, and who would blame him? We've all, I'm sure, had times in our lives when circumstances play out at our disadvantage. Instead, Paul responds in chains:

"Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interest of the others" (Philippians 2:1-4).

He wasn't kidding when he mentioned humility. Paul's letter, and really how he lived the latter part of his life, calls for unity. Understand the weight of this. Paul is here as a man in chains, not for the life he had before as Saul (Read Acts 9), but for the conviction to preach Christ. It's harmony in the One true King that he calls us to.

As Bryan and the Worship team led us in Hallelujah For The Cross, the word prisoner nearly took my breath away. I'm not behind bars or in actual chains, and yet, how often am I agitated by the sin that holds me the same? It's the arrogance in me needing to change someone's mind because I must be right. It's pride and anger when I'm wronged or at a disadvantage. But if I consider the cross, how does that narrative change? How is the story of hope shaped and pronounced, and how does that then pave how we strive for and preach unity in Christ? What does that mean for our relationships? For our social media feeds? What does unity mean for your soul?

As we wrap up RESET, we want to be intentional about this conversation of unity and releasing the chains in order to live in harmony with yourself and one another for the sake of Christ and making Him known. If you would like to pray with a pastor, please contact our office at 209-532-1381. 






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