The personally offended, the socially rejected, the spiritually crippled, the Rodney Dangerfield’s of the church. I know you are out there. I’ve seen you. I’ve talked with you. I’ve heard your saddened monotone mumbled singing during Praise and Worship. I’ve seen you eyeing the clock during the pastor’s sermon. (Alas, I fear the roast may be burnt !) Oh, I’ll even admit, I’ve been one…haven’t we all at one time or another?

YES…the Miserable In Christ.

I mean, come on, IF we are to show the Fruits of Spirits, Christ working in us, these people are sometimes producing PRUNES and LEMONS!!!

What keeps us from enjoying our relationship and growing in Christ? I can guarantee it is NOT CHRIST! I can assure you it’s not from reading your Bible. I highly doubt it is from spending time in prayer. Hanging out with other growing believers most likely isn’t it either. So, what is it that keeps us from having that joy…or when we feel this miserable “in our faith”…what is it that makes us so irked that we think there are “goofy” Christians with silly grins on their faces annoying us? Why is it that “those” are the Christians that IF we see them in the grocery store, we run to another aisle? Why are we so often irritated over someone else’s apparently “exciting” relationship in Christ?

Jealousy or pride? Sure, all very selfish feelings. Usually the direct result of NOT reading God’s Word, NOT praying as we should, NOT hanging with others of strong faith and NOT Christ moving in our lives enough but Him being restricted in our lives, or at least Him being “kept at bay” by our own actions.

I’m not going to ramble on, on how horrible a person is for NOT wallowing in Christian Super Spiritualism (I am awakened by the same annoying alarm clock everyday like you)…there are too many perspectives on that and God has us at different levels of growth. BUT I will give you a word of encouragement. Maybe we aren’t such “horrible Christians” as we oft times think we will grow to be content with…its just we need direction on how to grab a hold of the JOY OF CHRIST IN OUR LIVES.

A few weeks ago a couple friends and I were sitting around talking about our own spiritual growth. One guy shared how he realized that being “dead to ourselves” meant giving up ALL….NOTHING of myself left. That, as long as we held onto our pride and “ourselves” we would not be able to enjoy the potential God wanted to work by Christ being in us.

What does it mean to have Christ in us anyway? I’ll try and keep it simple. (please note these are things we should have already done…if not, DO) We have accepted Christ as our Savior (John 3:16, Rom 10:9-10) We have given ourselves as a “living sacrifice” (Rom 12:1-2, & 2 Cor 5:14-15) It is no longer I who lives, but Christ in me. (Gal 2:20, Col. 1:27)

To experience the great things God has for us and to sense that excitement, that we know we should have, we need to realize Christ is IN us. Too often we don’t remember that. We tend to believe He is off somewhere until we call on His name or we feel He has caught us doing something wrong…then He just shows up.

It isn’t that way. Remember when you invited Him into your heart? Well, He never left. Maybe, in your heart you just forgot where He was. Maybe you have a “clogged artery” to His presence.

Jesus wants you to know that He has so much to offer you. He wants the Holy Spirit to work in your life. You have a wealth of resources to draw from in Christ. There is no need to be miserable when you realize the ultimate access to power you have with Him in your life. Realize who you are in Christ and when you do, you will begin to experience the joy you may feel is missing at times.

You are a New Person…the old you is dead

You are a Child of the Father, God…Christ is your Brother

You are filled with the Holy spirit…the Devil has no hold on you

Try and remember back when you first trusted in Christ…the thrill of knowing that your sins were forgiven and the praises you had for how God had taken your life and began a “good work” in you. WELL, the Bible says, He who began a good work in you is FAITHFUL to complete it…YES, God has plans for you, exciting plans…plans that will blow your mind. Along with that, God has establish certain things we need to always think on, constructive maintenance of our spirit.

Philippians 4:6-8:

Whatever is TRUE

Whatever is HONEST

Whatever is JUST

Whatever is PURE

Whatever is LOVELY

Whatever is GOOD REPORT

If there be any virtue, and if there be any praise…THINK ON THESE THINGS.

Consider the access you have to God…

Consider the freedom you have from sin…

Consider the works God has already done in your life…

You’d be amazed how little you have to be miserable over and how much more exciting your life will be. Who knows, maybe YOU will be one of those Christians with a silly grin on your face now !!!

Be Bold, Be Blessed,

Pastor Steve