We cannot serve God and the world. We are either “in Christ” or “ in the world.” In Joshua 24:15 the Lord tells us to “choose this day whom you will serve….”
While I love to start my day with a steaming hot cup of coffee, my daughter prefers hers ice cold. I suffer from terrible musculoskeletal pain, the result of several auto-immune diseases that remind me of what possibly could have been “Paul’s thorn in the flesh.” Alternating warm, moist heat and cool refreshing cloths help ease my pain. However, when the cloths become lukewarm, they are no benefit to me, and on a hot day in southeast Georgia, I run into the house from a hard day of “yard work” and come back out to offer my husband an ice cold glass of water to refresh his body and soul. Then, I enjoy jumping into the cool waters of our our swimming pool to cool off after a hot day of work in the sun. As you see water can be cool and refreshing or warm and healing.
Have you ever read our Father’s words to the seven churches in Revelation? God revealed to John in a dream to address these words to the church at Laodicea The name of this city strangely enough means “the opinions of the people.”
“I know all things you do, that you are neither hot nor cold. I wish that you were one of the other! But since you are like lukewarm water, neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth.” Revelation 3:15-16
In other words, they made Jesus sick to the point of vomiting them out of His mouth? Friends, are we living any differently in 2021?
Are we any different from the church of Laodicea which was known for its wealth? An earthquake destroyed the city in AD 60, but the invincible city turned down Rome’s offers to help her people rebuild. After all Laodicea was self-sufficient, right? Was the people’s money their god, the reason for their pride? They produced beautiful wool envied by their neighbors and were known for “Phrygian powder,” a treasured product used to create a healing ointment for the eyes. But yet, God wanted to vomit them out of His mouth.
However, one resource the “affluent” city lacked was a sought after water supply. You see the aqueduct that carried water from hot mineral springs from five miles south became “lukewarm” or tepid before entering the city. On the other hand the Lycus River that joins the Maeander River fueled the city of Hierapolis with hot springs known for its “healing” warm water and mineral baths. I can’t help but laugh and think of the scene in one of my favorite movies War Room. Miss Clara fixes Elizabeth a cup of lukewarm water of which she almost spits out of her mouth and complains of its taste. When asked if she likes her coffee room temperature, “Miss” Clara replies, “No, baby, mine is hot.”
So you see cool and warm water both have a purpose but what about lukewarm water? What about us, friend? What are our motives for serving our Lord and Savior? Do we play “footsie” with the world? Do we straddle the fence? We must be ALL IN FOR JESUS and live for Him or live in and for the world. I don’t know about you, but I do not want to make my Savior sick to His stomach. I want my works to show that I truly love HIM. I want my motives to be pure love for my Savior and nothing else. Simply going to church, sitting on the pew and checking off the boxes is not good enough. While I am full aware that we are not saved by works but by faith alone through grace as a sure and true gift from Jesus Christ, I want to show my love for Him by living for Him-ALL IN FOR HIM AND NOT SIMPLY ENJOYING WORLDLY DESIRES. Do I struggle with this? Of course, I am human and live in a day and age where most things can be obtained instantaneously with the push of a button. Therefore, I must stay rooted and grounded in His Word daily.
“I know all things you do, that you are neither hot nor cold. I wish that you were one or the other! But since you are like lukewarm water, neither hot not cold, I will spit you out of my mouth.” He goes on in the third chapter of Revelation, “Because you say, ‘I am rich, and have become wealthy, and have no need of anything,’ and you do not know that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and Naked, I advise you to buy from Me gold refined by fire so that you may become rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself and the shame of your nakedness will not be revealed; and eye salve to apply to your eyes so that you may see.” Revelation 3:14-18
I am guilty of literally showing “hospitality” to videos on my phone, catching up with my friends on social media, floating in the cool pool and soaking up the sun, and busying myself with chores in the house. Yes, hospitality, letting these “other things” to come in and “commune with me” and “enjoying the company of these things.” But what is the true thing or actually the true and best relationship that my soul needs and craves? I know what it is because I know how “refreshed” I am after sitting in His presence-studying and meditating on His word-and praying to Him and then, sitting still and listening for what He may want to say to me that day.
Oh Father God, may I not “sit on the fence” and “play footsie but the world,” but I want to be HOT-ON FIRE-CRAZY IN LOVE WITH YOU, FATHER GOD, ALL IN FOR THE ONE WHO DIED ON THE CROSS FOR MY SINS. THANK YOU, MASTER, FOR SUFFERING FOR MY SINS SO THAT I MAY SPEND ETERNITY WITH YOU IN HEAVEN.
If you do not know the One who will never leave or forsake you, I will be glad to share what He has done for me. He is worthy. He is the reason for breath in me. I am easy to find on FB, (Karen K Moxley) Instagram, (@kkmoxley), or email (firstname.lastname@example.org). Feel free to keep scrolling down and reading the testimony of how richly He has blessed me and changed my life. God Bless You!