Philemon 6-7 – I pray that you may be active in sharing your faith, so that you will have a full understanding of every good thing we have in Christ. Your love has given me great joy and encouragement, because you, brother, have refreshed the hearts of the saints.

A young woman asks if I have signed up for an upcoming 5K "Fun Run."

"Oh, Karen, I'm not a racer; I just chug along for my health."

"But how do you know until you try? How can you improve if you don't set goals and push yourself to achieve them?"

She persists; I resist: "It's just exercise for me. I'd feel silly and self-conscious entering a competition and jogging in front of everyone."

"Well, you're missing out on a lot of fun. And you'd probably do well in your age bracket."

A bit interested now, I ask, "Do you get a free T-shirt?"

"Oh yeah," Karen laughs, "that's mostly what the registration fee is for."

"Hmmm… well, I'll think about it."

Karen got me thinking, all right. Do I just "chug along" in my faith as well? Is real growth restricted by remaining in comfortable areas of church involvement? Am I self-conscious about expressing my faith in "in front of everyone"? Does my "What's in it for me" attitude extend to spirituality?

The answers were somewhat challenging.

Prayer: Thank you, Jesus, for showing me that faith must be actively shared if I am to grow closer to understanding every good thing we have in you. As your love has given me great joy and encouragement, help me to refresh the hearts of others by reaching out beyond the "comfort zone." Amen.

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About the author:

Andrea Chapman
Lakeland, Florida, USA

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