What are some of the things you would fight for? Even more poignant; what would you gladly die for? For too many, fighting and dying are a daily reality and a lifelong experience. They are raised seeing their friends and family dying around them in the name of disease, greed, gang activity, drug addiction, and/or jealous rage.
Too many are jaded by the reality of violence before puberty. They are taught by the fate of being in the wrong group: such as anti-Christian and a politicized religious belief system. Their worldview says that fighting and dying is a way of living. Bummer!
Others live their entire lives in an illusion of protection or a bubble of privilege. Yet, they still are not shaped by the values associated with faith, freedom or life. Too many waste their privilege on self-centered pursuits instead of fighting for true faith. Is authentic faith worth fighting for? Should we just take our faith life or the freedom it brings for granted?
“Dear friends, I’ve dropped everything to write you about this salvation that we have in common. I have to write insisting--begging!—that you fight with everything you have in you for this faith entrusted to us as a gift to guard and cherish. What has happened is that some people have infiltrated our ranks (our Scriptures warned us this would happen), who beneath their pious skin are shameless scoundrels. Their design is to replace the sheer grace of our God with sheer license—which means doing away with Jesus Christ, our one and only Master.” Jude:3-4, The Message.
Authentic faith, the sheer grace of our true God (the one who is the object of our faith) and the joyful way of life that emanates from it, is worth fighting for.
Throughout history many have given the ultimate sacrifice so you and I could place our faith in Jesus Christ. Many have laid down their lives so we can have the freedom to pass this grace message to the next generation. They chose to be uncomfortable or inconvenienced to share this grace message of life and freedom with other people groups. We are the benefactors, and as such, we are indebted to them.
Since so many others have fought and died for our faith and freedom; we gladly say ‘yes’ to their sacrifice. How can we best be in agreement with their sacrifice? Following are some suggestions to answer that appropriate question:
Invest the remainder of your life in ‘growing in this faith and grace.’
Keep the attitude of your heart hungry and humble.
Live with your arms wide open to receive all that He provides for this faith to flourish.
Having received these grace gifts and spiritual nourishment, give it away and plant your faith in the hearts of those God places in your path. Contend for your faith; and thereby, make the sacrifice of so many others worthwhile! Preach the Gospel, and if necessary, use words!
In the grip of Papa’s Grace, Ron Ross