Wednesday Word 2.05.2020
25 On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. “Teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”
26 “What is written in the Law?” he replied. “How do you read it?”
27 He answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’”
28 “You have answered correctly,” Jesus replied. “Do this and you will live.”
There you have it. In one, succinct thirty-word passage, we are told exactly what we are to do. This is the desire of God’s heart for us. We are meant to love him with everything we’ve got and we are to love each other. Why can’t we do it?
We manage to do it sometimes. In spurts. On occasion. But that is not what the Scriptures say. All in. All the time. The question is the same as it was two thousand years ago and five thousand before that. We cannot use our busy modern lives as an excuse. The issue remains: how?
John Wesley studied Scripture all his life. He summed it up as a striving for Christian perfection. Not that we could ever become as perfect as Jesus, but the slow and steady transformation of our character and our attitudes and our actions can take us ever closer. In Matthew 5:48, Jesus is instructing his disciples, “Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.” Wesley believed wholeheartedly that we could get closer than we ever dreamed and reap all the joy that would come along with it. He worked out a plan. That is why we’re called “Methodists.”
We are going to join many of the eleven hundred other churches in the West Ohio Conference in looking at some of Wesley’s writings on the “how” questions, edited into more modern language to make it easy to read. The Conference has put together a four-week schedule of readings and discussions that we will follow to take a closer look. Join us. Ask me about it. Ask yourself the question Wesley asked of his small groups, “How is it with your soul.” …something to pray about.
Your sister in Christ, Vicki