11-13Dear, dear Corinthians, I can't tell you how much I long for you to enter this wide-open, spacious life. We didn't fence you in. The smallness you feel comes from within you. Your lives aren't small, but you're living them in a small way. I'm speaking as plainly as I can and with great affection. Open up your lives. Live openly and expansively!
Do you ever feel like the world is just not big enough? You know, like you are cramped up in a small place, getting no where in life. I have ask myself in recent times "is this it, is this what I was made for, is there any more for me to do God?
I may have told you that I was challenged to go to Bible study on Sunday morning, so I went. As I sat there I was reminded on how small I have made my world. Gene reminded us of how many times we use the personal pronoun "I" in a sentence. I was also reminded and challenged to get into God’s word more. We do tend to get into a pattern and then the pattern gets less and less in size and before we know it we have made our world so small that we can’t even function in it ourselves. This I have found to be a very dangerous place to be. The decisions we make while at this point are usually bad and nothing good comes out of them.
In the preceding verses of Chapter 6, Paul is talking about all the things in life we do and ends it up with "having nothing but having it all. Then falls into verses 11-13. This is where I want to write today. I have been accused of late of being to long in my writing but as I have learned and some of you know there are those who are not as brief as me. I am smiling now. I guess I could have written on 1-10 to start with and then moved into 11-13 but not today.
I want to talk to you about living openly and expansively as Paul has described here. To live a wide-open life, full of all that God has for you. How can we do this? How can we live a life that is wide-open and spacious, not fenced in?
Paul answers that question with one statement "The smallness you feel comes from within you.
What we feel is who we are. At any given moment in life, if we feel small we are small, if we feel big we are big, if we feel sad we are sad, if we feel happy we are happy. It all starts within. Here is the question for us today. Who is within us? Is it the Holy Spirit? Is there evidence of this?
I have built my own fence and if not broken down in time, life gets smaller and smaller. God has great plans for all those who know Him. We must depend on the Holy Spirit of God to direct us.
The point I am making today is the world is much bigger than we think, your world is much bigger than you think. As Pastor Jeff told me one time "God is only bound by His word, you cant’ put God in a box. These words are so true. The sad reality is most of our Christian culture or religions have put God into this tiny box that fits their world which becomes our world. We have fenced God in and made all these rules and regulations that really don’t apply in life, we have not only bound God, but have bound Him by our words.
Can this be broken, can this fence be torn down? Yes, of course it can, I am living proof of that. It starts with you understanding God and His word. Open up your lives. Live openly and expansively!