Beloved Brisbane Congregation,
Greetings and my prayers for the grace of Jesus our Saviour to be with you at this time.
I am sure that everyone is experiencing “far from normal” at the moment. We get very used to “normal” don’t we? But what is “normal”??
Our “normal” is simply what we have made it to be, by our patterns of behaviour and habits, or what the culture all around us is at a particular time (whether the culture of family or community), and we get used to this as “normal.”
There are good aspects and bad aspects of “normal.”
The good aspect of “normal” is that God has created us to be people of habit and routine, and as we use this aright it can be such a blessing. Habits of rising and going to bed at the same time each day, together with regularity of meals, helps our bodies to function very well. To have normal routines of home life and work life means not only efficiency but also people being able to rely on one another, work together, and feel secure. Especially important is the developing of habits of family and personal devotions, worship and church meetings and communion, so that they are entered into without a second thought and become a part of our very life before the face of God – we would not think of not having them.
But there are also bad aspects of “normal.” We very easily “fall into” the bad habits of laziness, apathy, or procrastination, or alternatively pursuits of pleasure, hobbies, etc. which suit our selfish desires. Worse, we fall into patterns of spiritual thinking and living which are very far from God’s truth and calling. In fact, as fallen creatures, this we do so often without realising, and they become “normal” for us. Then, when anything comes along which threatens or opposes this “normal” we naturally react against it, reject it, defend ourselves, and want to keep “doing our normal”!
At this time of everything being turned upside down, now is a very good time to prayerfully examine our lives, our “normal,” in the pure and perfect light of our Lord and Saviour and His Word. To ask ourselves whether our “normal” is reflective of, and active in, all that He calls us to be as new creatures in Christ Jesus.
May He, in grace, grant us to draw closer to Him, and to honestly examine ourselves. II Corinthians 13:5 – “Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves.” These can be rich times of Christian strength and growth!
In Christ and His love,