United Church of God

Treasure Digest: Stir Up the Spirit

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Treasure Digest

Stir Up the Spirit

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In the months between the Feast of Tabernacles and Passover, it can be easy to settle back into comfortable complacency. But complacency is a mortal enemy to Christians. We're warned over and over again that we are to be about the Master's business and occupy till He comes (Luke 19:13).

The parable of the 10 virgins (Matthew 25), the letter to the Laodiceans (Revelation 3:14-21), the parable of the thief in the night (Matthew 24:42-44) and Paul's call to put on the whole armor of God (Ephesians 6:13) are just a few of the passages that urge us to always be alert and ready. It's so easy to fall asleep at the switch! It's so easy to do only what's easy, comfortable and routine. But if we fall into this trap, we miss out on opportunities to grow and on opportunities to serve God by helping others to grow.

Here are a few suggestions to stir up our spiritual lives:

  • Widen your circle of friends in the Church. Extend the right hand of fellowship to a brother or sister who you do not yet know well.
  • Give someone the gift of your time, care and concern. Really listen—mouth closed, ears open! Then go home and pray for that person.
  • Create opportunities for brethren to spend time together and include people you do not know well.
  • Visit another UCG congregation.
  • Go out of your way to welcome newcomers and visitors to your congregation.
  • Ask your brothers and sisters in the Church what they have learned in the past year.
  • Shake up your study habits. Study a new subject or use a new Bible help. Refresh and expand your knowledge of the historical stage on which the story of the Bible is played out. Read up on the history, cultures or philosophies of first century world.
  • Take a fresh look at the UCG Web site. Use the literature library. Download some sermons, doctrinal papers or reprint articles. Exploit the Web site for all it's worth!
  • Prepare for the Sabbath and make it a more relaxed day, with fewer emergencies and hassles. Remember the coming Sabbath all week long, so you can be prepared to enjoy it more (Exodus 20:8-9)!
  • When you're at Sabbath services, talk about the Bible and the Kingdom of God more and worldly interests less (Isaiah 58:13-14).
  • Mount a fresh assault on one of your spiritual weaknesses.
  • Take a fresh look at the needs of your congregation and look for opportunities to serve.