Dancing in the Light

I John 1:7 "If we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ, His Son, cleanses us from all sin."

Location: North Platte, Nebraska, United States

I am a christian wife, mother and grandmother. I am a licensed Social worker and a licensed Christian counselor. I am most proud of the relationships I have with God, my family and friends all over the world. I have been blessed beyond my dreams.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Shelf Life

We are moving---yes, I know, we just moved.
Our landlord has decided to sell our house--yes, we had a one year lease and have only been here eight months.
He listed the house on Wednesday---yes, the housing market is really bad, so many houses are on the market for a long, long time.
It sold on Saturday and he got more than he asked for it----yes, we did do lots of work to fix it up.
And so we are moving---and yes, I hate moving!
As we begin the process of looking for a place to live, a place with a living room large enough to have home bible studies and a place that allows dogs, I have started going through cabinets, deciding what to take and what to throw away. During this process, I have found myself reading the labels---labels on toothpaste, sunscreen, ketchup and baking soda. Listed along with the ingredients is a date--the "best if used by" date. That date tells us what the shelf life is.
Wikipedia defines shelf life as the length of time perishable items are given before they are considered unsuitable.
I began thinking about Christians, and how many of us are content to simply sit on the pew (shelf) doing nothing. I recently asked a woman if she would be interested in teaching or co-teaching a Sunday school class---her response was "No, I did that before and I don't think I want to put that much preparation into Sunday morning." I was a little bit shocked at that response. I asked another woman who said she had taught when her children were young but had "grown beyond that kind of service". Amazing! I know those are not unique responses. I am sure you have heard similar excuses from men and women alike, who explain why they would rather not serve.
I am concerned that congregations are filled with members who prefer to sit on the shelf, (in the pew), unused and unwilling to be used. We know that we are indeed perishable---that we will all die and return to dust. We also know that God commands us and yes, even expects us, to be useful. We are to be a community of servants. That is our calling and our duty. We also believe that if we do not use our gifts, they will be taken from us and given to another.
And so, as I pack ---again, I wonder, "What is the shelf life of a Christian?"