FaithView: February 26, 2010

Joe T.

Pastor Joe T.

By Joe Torosian

“Into your hands I commit my spirit; redeem me, O Lord, the God of truth.”
— Psalm 31: 5

I hate clichés too.

Can’t stand them and yet I have to work hard all day long to avoid them.

I’ve had fun with it, but when Betty Holtsnider used to say: “Pastor Joe, I’ve heard that story before.” I’d get angry at myself.

I don’t want to be a cliché, yet we fight this all the time and the best example would be when we encourage people to read the Bible.

In church, we treat it like a precious jewel. After the benediction and “God Bless you, you are dismissed” it becomes another book.

We’ll encourage each other to get into the Word. We’ll preach messages about the Big Three (Prayer, Bible Reading, and Fellowship) being the keys to the Christian walk.

But we’ve heard it all before…and that Bible still becomes just another book after the ‘Amen” to Sunday service.

Can I say this? Nothing indispensable to me is a cliché.

I never get sick of kissing my daughters good night. I never get sick of hugging them at the end of the day. I never get sick of saying I love them.

This happens every day of my life. Yet, it is never cliché. It never becomes drudgery, in fact quite often, after a particularly difficult day, it becomes life sustaining.

Indispensable.

Being encouraged to read my Bible, and then just reading my Bible isn’t enough. Just learning the accounts, stories, and themes of the Bible isn’t enough.

I have to live through my Bible. My Bible in order for it to be what God intends it to be must become indispensable to my life.

Capiche?

We believe and sometimes have to argue with those corrupted in bad seminary about the Trinity. One God revealed through the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

The other Big Three (Prayer, Bible, Fellowship) are viewed quite often as unique unto themselves. However, our God (our Jesus) is found and revealed in all.

An active prayer life compels us to go to the Word and to be in fellowship with other believers. An active life of fellowship naturally draws me to prayer and study.

Living through the scriptures compels me to my knees and to the hearts of my brothers and sisters in the faith.

Isolated all of the big three are okay. I certainly wouldn’t tell somebody not to do them, but the strength of God, the majesty of God, the joy of God in its fullness is left untapped.

And what can pour out of that tap is living water. Life changing, victory producing, indispensable stuff.

“Praise be to the Lord, for he showed His wonderful love to me when I was in a besieged city.”
— Psalm 31:21

Often we come across people in life trapped in a besieged city. They know the book to read, they know the God to pray to, and they know the people they need to be around.

But the book will stay on the shelf, the prayer will cover the meal about to be devoured, and they will remain huddled unto themselves.

Because it is one thing to be told to read the Word, it is quite different to live through the Word. It is quite different to make it the most indispensable part of your life.

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