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lukewarm people

September 16, 2009

im reading crazy love by francis chan right now and am soon going to be writing a little diddy on one of the chapters for a book club im involved with started by angie smith and jessica turner.

every single page of this book has gripped me. what a bold book. what a convicting book. sweet conviction. i am only half way through and have been wrecked. and thats a good thing…cuz with a wreck – comes repair.

anyhoo…in one of the most powerful chapters ive read yet, francis says this about being lukewarm christians…

“Lukewarm people are continually concerned with playing it safe; they are slaves to the god of control. This focus on safe living keeps them from sacrificing and risking for God.” – from Crazy Love by Francis Chan

how does this statement impact you?

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18 Comments leave one →
  1. September 17, 2009 1:49 am

    A number of people in my childhood – and some i have chosen to be ‘close’ to in my present life have influenced me in such a way as to result in me sometimes feeling like i might be a ‘lukewarm’ person in some respects. Neither too Hot, nor too Cold (maybe i am actually porridge?) 😉

    There might well be an element of personal safety in that – putting personal safety above other priorities in life is sometimes advisable, but perhaps not always?

    I do not believe that God wants me to be an ‘extremist’ – we all know what an extreme belief in a religion or in God is capable of doing in this world and it is NOT always and only a good thing that results.

    Neither do i believe God wants me to be a ‘Cold Fish’ and have no fire or passion in life or never take some risks or sacrifices for His Sake.

    Until we know we are able to have some feeling for what is actually ‘right’ and what is ‘wrong’ in this life – an understanding of the Truth of God’s Actual Will for ourselves and not what we have simply been led to believe it is by others with strong convictions, i for one will continue being ‘lukewarm’ in order that i not be responsible for some serious transgressions in my life and the lives of others (or so i pray).

    i believe it was Paul who was first quoted as saying: ‘Moderation in all things’?

    Passion is a great motivator – it is sometimes a lousy director. Direction in life can be quite important and it is to come from Him always.

    Just how ‘safe’ my life is i guess could stand some further ‘consideration’. 😉

    <B

  2. September 17, 2009 5:06 am

    I pray all the time to get me out of the lukewarm/playing it safe status…….that statement is so powerful and true about equating lukewarm with being in control.

    I want to lay it all on the line and risk it all for Christ!

  3. September 17, 2009 5:21 am

    absolutely love this book! carry with me on the bus for something to read inbetween, and altho i have read it, it still is a good thing to read anywhere..love it!

  4. September 17, 2009 5:35 am

    Yes! I loved that book too. Wrecked is a great way to put what it does to you. I felt like I’d been through surgery for a couple of days after I finished it. It sort of altered my universe. I think it’s gonna be one of my ‘read once a year’ books. I hope to catch the next book club. I just had too much going on for this round.

  5. September 17, 2009 5:59 am

    If it weren’t for the fact there is no shame for those who are in Christ, it would make me ashamed of how lukewarm I’ve been for large parts of my life.

    And now, balancing the passion across all parts of life is the biggest challenge.

    A good challenge though 🙂

  6. September 17, 2009 6:05 am

    I know that sometimes I’m a slave to control, so I wonder if that means I’m a lukewarm person…

    I have GOT to get this book!!

  7. September 17, 2009 6:44 am

    As a white, male Christ follower in the U.S. I struggle with balancing “safe” living and being the provider for my family all the time. It’s really easy to say I trust God when I have a job, health insurance, a roof over my head, am well fed, and get to splurge on cigars and good beer once in a while. I tried to walk away from the lifestyle a few years ago and God wouldn’t let me do it. Instead of escaping I have to learn to be the Christ follower I am called to be in the society, culture, and circumstances where I exist. It’s hard to do. I fail more often than not.

    The early Christ followers were so outrageously extreme that they didn’t stop until somebody killed them. We are such radical believers in this country that we listen to different music, wear cool t-shirts with nifty slogans, and worry that we are going to pay higher taxes so that poor people get food, shelter, and medicine.

    Oh, we also get to read books that stir (wreck) our souls so much we commit to reading the book again…

    Maybe there is no repair Tam – maybe we stay wrecked, and in our wreckage seek to point others to our hope for existing within the wreckage?

    How has the book changed you? How will you live differently given the insight and knowledge you have gained from the book? How will it make a difference?

    • September 17, 2009 6:56 am

      P.S. My wife says I’m grouchy and the dig about reading the book again was inappropriate. Failed again. I am sorry.

    • September 17, 2009 7:33 am

      P.P.S.

    • September 17, 2009 9:11 am

      My goodness…back up the grump bus and catch another gear dude… LOL 🙂

  8. September 17, 2009 7:38 am

    Ouch. this is my day to day struggle. Needing and wanting to be in control for one reason or another is comfortable. In the last few weeks and maybe months i am trying to let that go bit by bit…and very much succeeding in some ways and flat out failing in others. It is easier for me to have control and not totally trust God because i dont know what exactly will come from it…but God is the author and perfecter of our faith….so logically, if i truly and 100% believed that shouldnt i just let go and totally sell out…yes, but the unknown of not having the control freaks me out!!

    But i am guilty more often than not of being lukewarm…and that breaks my heart.

  9. September 17, 2009 9:14 am

    Tam: Love this book… honestly, playing it safe has not been an issue for me. It’s being the right kind of risk taker that has been my struggle. I have the hootspa, it just gets misdirected at times, and can cause myself and others some strife. The Lord, being the faithful God that He is, has curbed that in me, and is showing me how to put it all together to be most effective for His Kingdom and bring Him the most glory. I love the challenge and the joy that that brings.

  10. September 17, 2009 9:56 am

    Wow. Being safe is so…..well….safe. It’s a lifestyle. It’s a culture. Easy to be safe when surrounded by people who live safe.

    I’m not there. I am surrounded by people who are challenging me to live on the edge, to declare my Christ, to DO what he would have us do no matter what. To live outside the walls. They are fanning the fires inside and every once in a while, pouring a little gas on the flames.

    I don’t want to be lukewarm. I’m trying not to be. I think I wanna read that book!

  11. September 17, 2009 8:05 pm

    B4D – Whether your wife is right about you being grouchy or not, when i read:

    ‘We are such radical believers in this country that we listen to different music, wear cool t-shirts with nifty slogans, and worry that we are going to pay higher taxes so that poor people get food, shelter, and medicine.’

    i feel compelled to say…..

    AMEN Brother! (you missed out ‘education’ also!)

    but have to add there are also a number of people who are doing great things for Him. They rarely make the mainstream media reports however. Unless they are in Iraq or Afghanistan or Iran, and TV watching Americans might get the idea that money and self-interest is more important than doing good works and thus displaying your faith.

    But i’m sure you already knew that, right Mr Grouchy? 😉

    <B

    • September 17, 2009 10:13 pm

      “and TV watching Americans might get the idea that money and self-interest is more important than doing good works and thus displaying your faith.”

      elaborate please.

      • September 18, 2009 1:47 am

        Gladly – people who watch a lot of ‘mainstream’ TV could perhaps feel that the ‘popular’ thing is to (ie, what ‘everybody’ else is doing) it to grab all that they can get for themselves and or their family and those they care about while blaming those who have far less financially than them for their own ‘failure’ to be as ‘clever’ as they are being , while not seeing that Charity and love of ( doing good works for) your fellow man is actually a very ‘desirable’ thing.

        It appears from some TV news reports for instance that there is a high percentage of Republicans who believe Mr Obama is trying to ‘stael’ their money to pay for poor democrat voters health care when clearly those people did not have the smarts to get their own health care paid for by their own means so they should rap what they have sown.

        Those who live IN faith are compelled to do works that reveal His Love inside of us to all others – and some of the attitudes i have seenand heard through the American media in my country are far from what i believe to be ‘good’ or demonstrate His Love for their neighbours.

        Has that helped clear away any confusion??

        i was NOT saying that just because you watch TV in America that you are not able to display your faith – but that there are many who do ( watch TV and display their kind of ‘faith’ publically and it is NOT a ‘pretty thing’ in my eyes – or to my spirit.

        Why should it be that you and i frequently seem not to be hearing all that clearly what the other is saying of late? Any ideas?

        <B

  12. September 18, 2009 7:19 pm

    That quote is killer. Loved this book!

  13. September 23, 2009 3:52 am

    It reminds me of my husband’s favorite quote:

    “A ship in harbor is safe, but that’s not what ships are made for.”

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