Five Miles in the Snow

uphill2 Corinthians 6:1-13
Happy Father’s Day!
It hit me this week, that much like our parents were hard on us because they wanted us to be the best people that we could be, Paul was hard on his folks because he wanted them to be the best Christ followers they could be. I think that some of Paul’s – conceit? – was like when a kid is griping about having to ride the school bus and gets the dadism, “At least you’ve got a bus to ride; in my day we had to walk five miles, uphill, in the snow to get to school and then had to walk five miles, uphill, in the snow to get back home.” I’m not saying that Paul was exaggerating like some of our folks, but I am saying that Paul was trying to make them see that he knew what rough was because he lived it – five miles, uphill, in the snow, both ways.

Paul’s hubris can sometimes be boiled down to another dadism. “Do as I say, not as I do.” But, just like we can often accept our fathers’ words of correction even when we see that they often fail to live in the way they are telling us to live because we know that they love us. Most of us have parents who want us to avoid the problems they have encountered even when they still do what they tell us not to do. Paul was trying to make his people see that he was trying – at all times – to live up to the gift of God’s grace.

If all you are doing with God’s grace is sitting in church on Sunday morning or, worse yet, not even doing that, you have accepted God’s grace in vain. If what is going on in the UMC is the excuse you are using to not be the person you are called to be, you are taking God’s grace in vain. If you aren’t coming to church and getting involved in church activities, if you aren’t talking with others about the greatness of the God, you say you serve because you don’t like so-and-so, or because you’d rather sleep or do something else, guess what? You are taking God’s grace in vain. Your relationship with God and your acceptance of God’s grace is between you and God. It’s not between you and so-and-so and isn’t contingent on you having something you’d rather be doing!Now is the time of God’s favor; now is the day of salvation!

Return to God. Dedicate your life to God. Stop taking His grace in vain. Walk those five miles in the snow, uphill, both ways.
Someone else’s salvation might depend on it.
Sermon Audio