September 28th – No Free Lunches



Today, it’s a challenge. Dr. Paul Brand, in that book of his I’ve quoted before, “The Forever Feast”, has a chapter headed “No more free lunch”. In it he raises the issue of our human addiction to the easy life, showing how easy it is for anyone at any time to get hooked on the easier options of life. He speaks of his leprosy patients, having been given reconstructed hands (incidentally, by Paul Brand’s inspired and revolutionary surgery) going back to their homes but not being able to get jobs. So the doctors mission station set up training programmes in cooking, in serving, in agriculture and farming to make ex-patients independent. Eventually, instead of it being the place of training for independence, it became a safe, easy place to live, where food was available and accommodation provided, and like young eagles, they had to be forced out to their nests to fly and hunt for themselves.
He ends the chapter by showing that in Jesus’ day there were those who came to him, after the 5000 were fed, for the free food which he refused to provide. Then Dr. Brand says:
“It happened in Israel, it happens in India, in United States, and it even happens in our churches. People who’ve been Christians for years delight in coming to church week by week. They listen to the greatest Bible teachers, but never accept the challenge to test their faith in real life. They never step outside of their safe Christian environment where there is no conflict. They enjoy the teaching about their duty to the poor and needy as they sit in padded pews and then go home to Sunday supper ….”
He points out that if we enjoy church but take no responsibility, we won’t grow. That’s the Christian challenge today. Are you treating church like a safe haven, a hospice, where the food is free, the work is done by others, and you opt out of the challenge of being with Jesus in the real world of conflict and struggle? Listen to Jesus:
“I tell you the truth, you are looking for me, not because you saw miraculous signs but because you ate the loaves and had your fill. Do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you.” ..John 6:26-27
Then he said to his disciples “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.” Matthew 9:37-38
A Prayer
From confusing the life of faith with lazy comfort, Good Lord deliver us your people.
Now read Genesis Chapter 3.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Thought 4 The Day

The two great tests of character are wealth and poverty. (Anon)

Through the year calendar

May 2016
M T W T F S S
« Apr «-»  
 1
2345678
9101112131415
16171819202122
23242526272829
3031  

Click on any previous date in the above calendar to read the relevant Through The Year post
Believe it or Not
Sometimes you just can't believe it's true!
A Word in Time
Life has a funny way of connecting us all!
Cooke's Tour of The Bible
Frank Cooke's journey through the Old and New Testaments
Take 2
Some useful life lessons
Mind Stretchers
An open mind is a healthy mind!
Bible Bloopers
Even the Bible has its funnies!