Summary: The challenge I present to you today isn’t about scientific inertia, but rather spiritual inertia…and although today it is geared toward our young people, this principle relates to all of us.
Inertia: State of Motion
Every body perseveres in its state of being at rest or of moving uniformly straight ahead, except insofar as it is compelled to change its state by forces impressed. [Cohen & Whitman 1999 translation]
Definition: "… a body at rest will remain at rest and a body moving with constant velocity will continue to do so, unless disturbed by an unbalanced force"
We learned this scientific principle from Sir Isaac Newton when we were in elementary school and throughout. Let me illustrate…
The challenge I present to you today isn’t about scientific inertia, but rather spiritual inertia…and although today it is geared toward our young people, this principle relates to all of us.
George Barna Study
Specifically, 61 percent of today’s young adults, who, as teenagers, were churched at one point, are now spiritually disengaged. Spiritual disengagement is identified as being inactive when it comes to church attendance, Bible reading, or prayer. Only 20 percent of twentysomethings have maintained spiritual activity consistent with that of their high school experiences, the study revealed.
So what do we do? How do we apply the laws of motion and inertia to our spiritual life?
Every person – young and old alike – have a choice to make; to stay as a “body at rest” or a “body moving with constant motion”.
1Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual act of worship. 2Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
3For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you. 4Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, 5so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. 6We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man’s gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. 7If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; 8if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully.
9Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. 10Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves. 11Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. 12Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. 13Share with God’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.
14Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. 15Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. 16Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited.
Paul spells it out here for us. He may have never understood Newton’s first law of motion, but he obviously understood the importance of spiritually being in a state of constant motion.
1. You Belong! (v3-8)
Video: March of the Unqualified (1:35)
We are all part of the body – YOU BELONG!
You may not feel gifted or qualified, but you are.
No matter what your age or abilities, you are an important and essential part of this body, and without you WE – the Church – are incomplete.
Stay connected with church
Be responsible with your knowledge and abilities
YOU BELONG & God wants to use you.
2. Stay Balanced! (v9)
“Hate what is evil; cling to what is good.”
For some of you, life is going to start coming at you a little bit faster than usual. You’ll have a bit more independence – freedom, but realize that it comes with a price. Responsibility.
It is now YOUR responsibility to stay balanced in your life at every level: physically, financially, and spiritually.
Now more than ever, you need to stay focused and keep your relationship with God as your number one priority.
Paul spoke to the Galatians church about this very thing.
13You, my brothers, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the sinful nature; rather, serve one another in love. 14The entire law is summed up in a single command: "Love your neighbor as yourself." 15If you keep on biting and devouring each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other.