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Open Rebuke and Faithful Wounds April 11, 2007

Posted by Joe in Random Musings.
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Good morning all those we affectionately call ‘blog nation,’

So I was in Proverbs this morning and came across these two verses,

“Better is open rebuke than hidden love.”

“Faithful are the wounds of a friend; profuse are the kisses of an enemy.” (Provers 27:5-6)

As I hope you recall our topic for the week is the personal pursuit of God. The thought that came to mind while reading these verse is simply that the our personal pursuits require a corporate accountability.

That’s nothing fancy right? No big surprise. We would probably all agree. Now, the question is: are we living this? That is the first question I had to ask myself this morning. Am I embracing and pursuing relationships that welcome loving rebukes and/or faithful wounds? Or do my relationships consist of little more than a ‘Christian socialization’? That is to say, how do my relationships with my closest brothers in Christ differ from the basic relationships of those who do not know Him? How much difference is there—really? Do we just share the same room for watching movies and go out to eat once in awhile or are we truly caring for each others’ souls?

I know have I been posting a lot of questions these past few days, but as I warned you on Monday, I am simply welcoming you into my world. I just don’t want to settle for the shallow, superficial Christianity that is so popular among us today. And I trust I am not alone. It’s rampant, brothers and sisters, and one of the indications of this apathy if our superficial relationships with one another. How many people in our lives really know our greatest struggles? Indeed, how many really know what we are struggling with right now?

The reason these questions are important is because our answers reveal (once again) how hungry we are for the Lord. We simply cannot come to know and love and enjoy Him on our own. As much as I love the prayer closet, it is not the end all of all ends. Our seeking Him alone is meant to strengthen the corporate manifestation of the glory of our God. And our corporate fellowship and accountability is meant to do the same. They must go hand in hand. Without such rich, intimate, open-rebuking, faithful-wounding fellowship, we simply cannot be the real thing. As much as we would like to take the spiritual shortcut, no shortcut exists.

So let us pursue greater fellowship among the body. Let us seek out our fellow Christians and take steps to expose ourselves to open rebuke and faithful wounds. It won’t be easy, of course, but pursuing God in a godless world is never easy. Indeed, our flesh might cry out against our every inclination towards it, but then again, it is our flesh. Let us tap into the life of the Spirit and pursue greater intimacy with the Lord as we pursue greater intimacy with one another. For if no one really knows us, then we do not really know God.

Seeking Him with you,
Joe

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