My wife and I drove up to Lawrence yesterday to visit our eldest son and go to church and lunch with him. We had a great time and enjoyed our fellowship.
Lawrence is 2.5 hours northeast of Wichita and the Kansas Turnpike is connected between both cities. So the travel is pretty direct with limited slow downs. A few rest stops along the highway are available if needed but the trip can be made without a stop.
When I travel I like to look at the license plates on other vehicles. I saw some from Minnesota, Illinois, Iowa, and of course some from Kansas counties. What was real interesting to me was the amount of license plates I saw from my home county. This highway goes by our state capital and after Lawrence continues on to Kansas City. Both of those locations may be in a person’s day trip plans. But boy there were a lot of Sedgwick county plates traveling yesterday.
In our Christian walk it is easier for us to stay focused and be successful when we walk with brothers and sisters. If a license plate were attached to us and displayed our true spiritual location state. Would we be known as a brother or a sister, or just someone passing through? My prayer is that my life points the way to Christ and my license plate would show that I am a traveler who is a Christian brother.
“In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.” Matthew 5:16 NLT
We are born innocent and reliant upon others. As we grow we learn to do things for ourselves. We also learn that we want our way and defiance begins to grow. Others work with us to mold the ‘me’ mentality into more of a ‘we’ mentality. We will always have a little bit of the defiant ‘me’ attitude in us…that is part of our natural being. Protect numero uno, get what I can get, and take care of things so that I look good.
The truth is though, the more the me first attitude shows to others, the less they want anything to do with us. We are made to have family and friends and without those we will never know true fulfillment and joy. A recluse is happy to be alone…but there is a whole in their being that only kinship can cure. Our ‘me’ first nature must be subdued and disciplined for us to continue growing and learning. I always say, “that the day I quit learning is the day I no longer live”.
God’s word tells us…
“The greatest among you must be a servant. But those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.” Matthew 23:11-12 NLT
“Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves.” Philippians 2:3 NLT
So as Christians we must throw away ME and work towards WE. As we meet together we should listen and learn from each other in humbleness, remembering that God reveals himself and His word to each of us differently. We are all on the same road but we are not at the same mile marker…those with more experience in this or that matter should humbly share their knowledge to build up the body. As we share with each other we grow not only in our walk but in Christian fellowship with bonds that allow us to go to battle side by side and arm in arm against our foe.
It is easy to divide a group of people not connected but if their arms are linked the division is much harder to accomplish. Growing together in God’s word creates these interlocked spiritual arms with which we hold up and onto each other.
In nature we can see this type of protection with cattle. The more experienced older animals will create a circle with their faces out towards a predator while the younger and weaker animals get in the center. A few of the stronger animals may even stay between a predator and herd walking around the group showing their strength. They know that a lone cow is easy prey and there is strength in numbers.
May we be vigilant in making sure that WE grow together making a mighty army for our Lord. Remember a lone warrior can be picked off much easier than a group of warriors.