As Paul concluded the letter to the church in Corinth, there is a verse that seems to have snuck into the middle of a variety of instructions on different relationships and love. It is one verse that packs a powerful punch. I think it would be good for us to dwell on it awhile.
1 Cor 16:13 "Be alert, stand firm in the faith, be courageous, be strong."
There are four commands that can really grab our attention if we let them.
Be Watchful. Be Aware. Be Attentive.
We see a common Biblical image of a guard being alert at his post. A guard with a ton of responsibility to pertect and alert everyone in the fortress. A guard hopefully not sleepy, not distracted nor careless.
Are you alert? Are you watchful? Are you aware and attentive? Or are you distracted, sleepy or careless?
What does God want us to be alert about?
Visible and invisible. Relational and emotional. Others and self. God and Evil one.
Are we alert to what the people in our lives are saying and doing? Are we alert to what they are not saying and not doing?
Does God want us to hear something from our children, our spouse, our co-worker, our neighbor that they are in need of help? Has someone sent a non-verbal signal that reveals that behind the beautiful facade there is a wound, a problem that God wants you to help with?
Are we alert to what we are saying and doing? Are we alert to what we are not saying and not doing? What is the condition of our soul? What is the condition of our relationship with God and with our self? Are we spiritually and emotionally healthy?
Are we alert to what God is doing, what Jesus is praying and what the Holy Spirit is guiding?
Are we alert to the adversary who is seeking to thwart God and God's plans? Jesus explained that this battle has been going on throughout all of history. Satan hates God and hates God's plans.
One of his attacks is to convince us he and his conspiracies are not real. Another attack is to convince us that God is not real. Another is to seek to create many possible options and promote tolerance.
Are you alert?
What kind of guard are you these days?
Energetically alert to the unknown adventure Jesus has for us every single day...
Casually distracted to the secondary things that are very important and good...
Asleep and fully engaged and controlled by our temptations...
Praying for all of us to Be Alert,
Pastor Chris Reinertson enjoys all sports, especially those involving a ball. He loves to hang out with people and challenge them to be Jesus REVolutionizers.