Blueprint Living and Church

When I relapse into keeping commandments, I get into trouble. It is a shallow way to live. My problem is I select the commandments that I believe I am fulfilling. I figure the other commands—the ones to which I have little or no allegiance—will fall under the grace of Jesus.

This works extremely well in deciding which Christ followers I will fellowship and which ones I will judge.

I just apply the reverse principle. Where I give me grace, I withhold it from others. That leaves them without cover.

blueprintThe blueprint approach to living within the fellowship of the church is attractive. I am either in or out, and I know who is or isn’t kin to me in Jesus. Once again, that is rather shallow living.

Living at the blueprint level makes me wonder why I would even need the Holy Spirit.

I understand the part about the level ground at the cross and not being able to save myself.

My task is to figure out how to live once I rise with Jesus from the watery grave of baptism.

I remember a phrase of the Apostle Paul from his letter to the church in Philippi:

Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence—continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling.

Sounds like a big chunk of responsibility falls on my shoulders.

Holy Spirit living is “deep commitment” living. It is the working out the results of my salvation in fear and trembling. Absolutely, I need the power of the indwelling of His Spirit on this one.

Time, and again, the New Testament Scripture says walk by the Spirit. This is not a “corner cutting” lifestyle.

Holy Spirit living is hard. There is no blueprint here. Holy Spirit living is Jesus living. It is the daily work of living the definition of salvation by the grace of Jesus.

Holy Spirit living is antenna-extended living. Each day I am trying to determine how I should act, live, think, and respond in each new situation.

architects-crumpled-blueprint-paperweight-1Guided by Scripture, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit, I determine how to treat other followers of Jesus and how to relate to lost people. There is no blueprint for this one.

So What?

What does this mean for those of us who want to see churches reflect more of the cross and less of our personal likes, dislikes, and demands?

More personal yet, what does it mean for me as I desire to reflect more of the cross and less of self?

  1. Maybe we should all join “My Way Anonymous.” It would meet when the church does not. At each meeting, we will all introduce ourselves and declare, “It is Jesus’ church, not mine. I will follow Jesus’ way and not demand of others they do church my way.”
  2. Jesus will become my sought after standard for living my life and relating to those in and out of His church. That should take care of all “do’s and don’ts.” The better I know Jesus, the better I will live among my neighbors and God’s family.
  3. Throughout the day, I will listen to the urges and nudges of the Holy Spirit. His voice and nudges will always align with Scripture. There is no disharmony among the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

Blueprint living is shallow and easy. Holy Spirit living is rich and demanding—not of others, but of me.

Stay tuned. – Gary J. Sorrells – On Cross Church

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