Summary: Emulating the life of Christ.
Fat, Faint, or Fit?
“A young man had finished his first semester in college, and was spending the weekend at home. Somewhat bored with the old place, he was regaling his father with the wonders of his campus and the enlightened people there. After getting up a head of steam and warming up to his subject he said, ‘Why, Dad, in our chemistry lab at college we have made an acid that will dissolve any known substance.’ The father turned and looked at him and slowly said, ‘That’s mighty fine. What do they keep it in, son?’” (Michael Hodgin, 1001 Humorous Illustrations for Public Speaking (Zondervan: Grand Rapids, Michigan, 1994), 213).
Logic can be very complicated and confounding when we neglect to view all vantage points. But logic in and of itself is very simple. For instance, it seems logical that if I plug in an electric fence, I will feel the electrical charge surging through the lines if I touch them. Or, if I were to drink a bottle of poison, there would be some adverse type of affect on my body – possibly death.
Most of us use logic everyday as we go about our specific routines. We use deductive reasoning with lightening speed. And we do most of this sub-consciously. There are certain impulses in our brains that help us to make certain decisions like eating, drinking, and sleeping, and certain reflexes that keep us from physical harm and pain when we feel the heat of a stove, or prick of a thorn.
Also, there is some simple logic when it comes to maintaining a healthy lifestyle and livelihood. Regular exercise, eating the right kinds of foods in the right proportions, and eliminating stress through positive extracurricular outlets is a pretty simple way to maintain a good, healthy lifestyle and balance physically.
But what about when this healthy lifestyle is kicked to the curb? What happens when I throw caution to the wind and do whatever I do without a care for what might happen to me?
When I do this I neglect all logic, and live the way I feel like living, without a care for the adverse affects on myself or anyone else around me.
There came a time when Jesus’ disciples had been under his tutelage for a while and had come to understand who he was enough to go into the surrounding communities with this message of grace, mercy, peace, and love that Jesus had been instilling in them. And it’s in Matthew 10, we see Jesus giving the disciples some final instructions before their journey. Now most of this had become second nature to them by now, but Jesus reminds them of who they are and what they are to be about while they are away from him.
One specific verse stands out as the purpose for their trip in…
Matthew 10:8 (NLT)
“Heal the sick, raise the dead, cure those with leprosy, and cast out demons. Give as freely as you have received!”
Jesus was, in essence, telling them to do all that he was doing. To go into the local communities healing the sick, raising the dead, curing those with leprosy, and casting out demons. And he tags this specific verse with the icing on the cake being to give as freely as they have received.
They were not to hoard all the blessings and truth that they had been given by Christ, but were to share it freely so as to give eternal life. They were taking part in God’s work and were to be sources and channels of God’s love to the rest of the world.
There’s a saying that goes like this…
If you take in but never give out you become FAT.
If you give out but never take in, you become FAINT.
If you take in and give out, you become FIT.
I want to take some time looking at each of these today to assess were we might fall within the scope freely giving as we have received:
When we take in but never give out we become fat. And when we become fat our mobility is slowed. We can’t move nearly as fast, and are not as agile. In some extreme cases of obesity, mobility is non-existent, leaving a person bedridden and incapable of leaving their own home. More often than not, this is a result of over-consumption with no evidence of output through exercise and physical activity.
Another example of this is the Dead Sea. The Dead Sea is a body of water in the Middle East located between Jordan and Israel. The Dead Sea is unique in that “nothing lives in it. It is some of the saltiest water anywhere in the world, almost six times as salty as the ocean! The Dead Sea is completely landlocked and it gets saltier with increasing depth…