It is a long day. Work is challenging. A few minutes are spent at home around the dinner table with the family. Then it’s off to the next appointment on the calendar.
It is 9:00 PM. Finally, you return home. You change into comfortable clothes. You settle into your favorite chair for the evening. You pick up a book for a quiet time of reading when all of a sudden the urge hits. It is a strong urge. It is an irresistible urge. It is an urge that can only be satisfied by one thing – potato chips!
There is no better snack after a long, hard day than potato chips and an ice-cold soda. You make your way to the kitchen. The ice-cold soda is poured over crushed ice. The cabinet is opened and there it is, a brand new, fresh bag of chips! Your mouth is watering. You can’t wait to put them in your mouth and wash them down with the soda.
Upon returning to your chair and settling in to enjoy your snack, you open the bag of chips. Listen. Listen carefully. As you open the bag all of the air escapes. It is at that very moment, you realize that your $10 bag of chips is forty ounces of air! Of course, I exaggerate to make the point. The large bag of chips only contains about two hands full of chips. The thought runs through your mind, “Why do I continue to pay for air?”
If we are honest with ourselves, most of us feel that we do not get a fair amount of chips for the amount of money we paid. This is not a new problem. As a matter of fact, it is as old as the Bible. A system of weights was used to ensure that the buyer was getting his weight’s worth of product. But, if a seller was dishonest, he would deceptively mark the weights so that the buyer received less product than what he paid for.
Paul employs this word picture when He instructs the Ephesians to “walk in a manner worthy (Ephesians 4:1).” What were they to walk worthy of? Simply stated it is the weight of the call of the Gospel upon their lives.
This is true for you and me today. We are to walk worthy of the call of the Gospel upon our lives. Do we understand the weight of the Gospel? The weight of the Gospel caused Jesus to sweat great drops of blood in the garden. Yet, He prayed, “…Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done…(Luke 22:42, ESV).”
The weight of the Gospel cost Jesus His life. Is it too much for us to give all that we have and all that we are to Him? The sinful world around us needs to see us walking worthy of the call of the Gospel in our lives!
So, how are we to walk worthy of the Gospel? Paul gives five characteristics of this walk:
- Walk humbly. The world is filled with pride. The world is all about position, profit, and prominence. That is anything but humility.
- Walk gently. This may be true around the world. But, it is for certain in the American culture that value is placed on the type A personality who takes the bull by the horns and gets things done. That certainly is not gentleness.
- Walk patiently. We live in a microwave society. Everything is expected to be delivered quickly. Our technology puts the world at our fingertips with the opening of an app. As a result, we have forgotten how to have patience.
- Walk with forbearance. This is the idea of holding yourself uprightly against something. Perhaps you saw in the news a couple of years ago the children’s carnival ride that collapsed. Spectators immediately rushed to push against the ride to hold it up until the children could be safely removed. That is forbearance.
- Walk eagerly to maintain unity. This is the importance of being a part of a local church. The world that lives in disunity and disintegration desperately needs to see the Church living in unity!
Are you walking worthy of the Gospel in your life? Are these five characteristics true of you?