There are some things you can only see on tiptoe. On tiptoe you can touch things, you cannot fully grasp. I have met some people in life who it seems are always on their tiptoes. They seem to see things others cannot see and hear things others cannot hear. Have you ever noticed how ripe Jesus thoughts were? He brought things that were on the top shelf down to where they were there for us to reach. I was on tiptoe this morning as I read once again from the margin of my Bible old notes on 3 things we need in life.
# 1 TOP SHELF CHRISTIANITY IS NOT AN EYE FOR AN EYE MENTALITY
The Message Translation
Love Your Enemies
38-42 “Here’s another old saying that deserves a second look: ‘Eye for eye, tooth for tooth.’ Is that going to get us anywhere? Here’s what I propose: ‘Don’t hit back at all.’ If someone strikes you, stand there and take it. If someone drags you into court and sues for the shirt off your back, giftwrap your best coat and make a present of it. And if someone takes unfair advantage of you, use the occasion to practice the servant life. No more tit-for-tat stuff. Live generously.
A. Don’t live your life trying to get even with someone.
B. Don’t seek revenge.
In England they have 22o volts of electricity in their kitchens, I remember the many times being in someone’s home and they offered me a spot of tea. The tea kettle has a blow off valve and when the water starts to boil, it whistles like a happy hustler. It is a release mechanism and that is exactly what we should be like, we need to learn how to release our resentments.
# 2 TOP SHELF CHRISTIANITY CHALLENGES THE OLD WRITTEN LAW
43- “You’re familiar with the old written law, ‘Love your friend,’ and its unwritten companion, ‘Hate your enemy.’ I’m challenging that. I’m telling you to love your enemies. Let them bring out the best in you, not the worst. When someone gives you a hard time, respond with the (supple moves of prayer), for then you are working out of your true selves, your God-created selves.
A. When someone offends you, thank God for them for they have shown you a right that you have not yet yielded to god.
B. What does supple mean? Bending easily and gracefully. Remember God is working in you both to will and do of His own good pleasure.
# 3 TOP SHELF CHRISTIANITY IS HOW WE PROVE OUR IDENTITY AS HIS SONS AND DAUGHTERS
45 For that will reveal your identity as children of your heavenly Father. He is kind to all by bringing the sunrise to warm and rainfall to refresh whether a person does what is good or evil. 46 What reward do you deserve if you only love the loveable? Don’t even the tax collectors do that? 47 How are you any different from others if you limit your kindness only to your friends? Don’t even the ungodly do that? 48 Since you are children of a perfect Father in heaven, become perfect like him.”
A. If God is not limited in His kindness, should we be?
B. What does perfect mean in this context?
Perfect: whole, complete, fully mature, lacking nothing, all-inclusive, well rounded, spiritually mature
These are my ripest thoughts this morning therefore, be encouraged my friends, “for when we see Him, we shall be as He is.”
His Word is the plumb line of my life as I continue to walk, In His Steps.
Thank you for your continued support and love of the ongoing passion for Christ and the vision of Heritage Fellowship. As you know this past month has been a time for us to grow together as we do life together. The July tent meeting and noon prayer gatherings have been rich with expectations putting us on our tiptoes making this a Top Shelf Summer.
The Academy is in full getting ready mode as Howard Davis, our principal, and teachers make ready for another year of pouring out their lives, into the children god entrust us with. We are far ahead of enrollment at this time and we covet your prayers as we proceed with preparations, while having to face the cultural challenges of the times.
We Believe in you,
Pastor Cleddie and GayNell Keith