Friday, July 10, 2009

Independence Day Celebration

Independence is such a revered concept in America that we actually have a holiday named for it. In fact we celebrated it last week. It’s July 4th or Independence Day. At journey we celebrated it with a Patriotic Pig Roast. Instead of meeting in the morning we met in the afternoon and instead of meeting at the usual place we met at the Fisher Farm. It was a great time of food and fun.

Yet there is an independence that we as Christ followers were never intended to have, an independence from God and from one another. Jesus when he was asked by one of the experts in the law “what is the greatest commandment?” said it was to love the Lord your God and to love one another as ourselves, Matthew 22:35,36.

35One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: 36"Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?" 37Jesus replied: " 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.'[b] 38This is the first and greatest commandment. 39And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'[c] 40All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments."

How do we love God with all of our heart and love one another as ourselves? That’s the question we asked this past Sunday at journey. We concluded that we love God by following the admonition of Proverbs 3:5,6.

5Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; 6 in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight. [a]

Then we live in interdependence with one another by recognizing that we are not complete in and of ourselves but merely one part of “the body” in which no part is more important than the other and everyone sorrows with those who sorrow and rejoices with those who rejoice, 1 Corinthians 12:12,

12The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body.

While I am grateful for the independence and freedoms I enjoy as an American I am even more grateful for the privilege of being part of a people who are seeking to live in dependence of God and interdependence of one another.