Thursday, July 30, 2009

Am I Normally Tepid?

Am I a "Lukewarm Christian?" Lukewarm is not hot. It is not cold. It is a cup of coffee which has cooled off. It is a cup of tea which no longer steams. It is a shower in the morning just warm enough not to be cold. As a Christian it is going through the motions of the Faith with no heart. It is having the porch light on but not being home!

Curt Little writes: "We all know lukewarm Christians. Christians that are neither hot nor cold. They have a tendency to keep God reserved to just Sundays. Or they carry around what we call 'backpack God.' They carry God where they want, when they think they need His help and leave Him in the backpack when they think that they can handle the situation or when they 'don’t want Him to see.' They try to get God to 'Sit. Stay. Heal.' God is not our pet and He is a little too big for a backpack." See

From Mentoring Leaders by Carson Pue....

Charles Swindoll, in his essay "Prophet Sharing," talks about this lukewarm complacency. As you read his words, ask yourself, do I find myself among them somewhere? "Always evaluating where we have been... always reacting.... searching for ways to settle in and find comfort on our sofa-like surroundings... yawning... slumbering in the sleepy, warm twilight of sundown... finding a great deal of security in the mediocrity and predictability of sameness... We are like chatty, laughing, tourists taking snapshots of the lowlands through rose-colored filters... enjoying today's lull... we are yesterday dwellers... avoiding the reality of today."

We know God detests us being complacent! "Because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor not, I will vomit you out of My mouth." (Rev. 3:16 NKJV).

What is lukewarmness among leaders? It is a place where leaders begin to feel they have arrived -- that they have reached a particular degree of development or stature -- and then gradually allow themselves to become complacent in that place. They feel sapped of energy, eventually not wanting to try to improve their spiritual life. It is like a slow-working disease eventually taking the life of the host.

I would add to Pue's desciption that of the Professional Christian -- those in leadership who are Christian on the job, but not at any other time.

For me, the issue is not whether I am ever lukewarm or tepid. The issue is whether "normal" for me is tepid, or "normal" for me is "hot on-fire." What is common for my life and ministry?

After walking with the Lord for years, I want normal for me to be "hot on-fire" not lukewarm. Lord, help me to be ON FIRE for you all the time. Amen.

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