Keeping it simple

By Pastor John J. Settlage - Your pastor speaks

Have you ever encountered a project where you really needed some extra help? Maybe you needed information or strategy on how to accomplish the project. Like changing the brake rotors on your car when you have never done that before. Or maybe you want to bake a chocolate cake from scratch and you need a recipe to follow.

Maybe you have a project like moving a refrigerator and need extra manpower because it’s something that is physically impossible to lift by yourself. My mom is an avid quilter and she often needs help when laying out a big quilt just because of the bulk of handling a queen- or king-sized quilt. I think you get the picture, there are many things we just can’t do by ourselves; we frequently need help. That’s one of the neat things about community and friends and family; working together to accomplish a mission.

Jesus gives us a mission in the new testament that is quite frankly just too big to do by ourselves. We are instructed to make disciples everywhere we go. This is an ongoing project or mission that will continue until everyone has heard about the great news of Jesus’ love for them and have an opportunity to respond to that love. As believers of Christ we believe what He said, as followers of Christ we follow His example. Even in these ‘simple’ steps we need help. This is a place where like-minded friends can help by giving encouragement and accountability. However, this is a bigger deal then even us working together can achieve.

There are changes that we can make in our life, like changing jobs, or changing our diet. The work of Christ in us is altogether different. It is not about changing things in our life but rather changing our life. This is a supernatural work completed in us by One outside of the natural. Friends can help get us there but the work is done in us by God.

So, who is God? This one who is outside of our natural understanding? He appears in scripture and to us in three parts; the Father (creator), the Son (Christ the redeemer), and the Holy Spirit (the sustainer or helper). This is God, all in one, one in all. He comes to us in fullness. In the gospel of John chapter 16 we see the Son ask the Father to send us the Helper (the Spirit). God’s work in us in fullness. The work involves all aspects of God and is a continuing work in us of life change.

Our testimony becomes one of supernaturally transformed lives demonstrating Christ’s love in us and through us. The fact that the Father sent the Spirit, at Christ’s request to help in this transformation should by recognized. The Holy Spirit’s work in us is ongoing because He lives here, as in right here, in us. The Spirit is therefore our helper, in us and with us. In the book of Acts the Spirit is given to Christ’s followers at Pentecost. The Spirit was given as the helper so that followers filled with the help and power of the Spirit could accomplish the supernatural work that God intended for a transformed people.

We can’t do it by ourselves.

The book of Romans chapter 8:26 says the Spirit helps in our weakness even helping us pray as we ought. A supernatural, ongoing event, taking place in the new life of a believer and follower of Christ. And this Helper is always available and we are never alone. We are now spiritual beings filled with supernatural power to accomplish amazing and wonderful exploits demonstrating the love of God everywhere we go. It’s that simple!

By Pastor John J. Settlage

Your pastor speaks

The writer is the pastor of Christ the King Church near Jackson Center.

The writer is the pastor of Christ the King Church near Jackson Center.