Friday, April 17, 2015

Private Religion

As I was reading through the Sermon on the Mount it occurred to me that Jesus is not talking about mere heart religion, as if the religion you profess in public is not heart religion. But He addresses this by talking about what you do in private or in secret. What you do privately does reveal your heart religion. So, maybe it would be better to ask not "!hat do I really believe in my heart?" but, rather, "What do I do in private, when no one is watching but God?" And whatever THAT is, reveals what is in your heart.

That strikes many of us as scary. It reveals lack. It reveals failure. It reveals immaturity. And it reveals truth.

The answer, like Sunday school, is Jesus. Turn to Him. Confess your sins, failings, immaturities. Ask Him to make you in private what you show in public. Ask Him to make you the sort of man in your home that you appear to be at church. Ask Him to renew and transform you so that you learn to love what He loves, and in such a particular way, that even in secret, you take no pleasure in the things He takes no pleasure in. And to God be the glory!

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