I don’t talk about anything meaningful with Patrick until the bus ride. I tell him about culture and how I think people in developed countries have so much but have so little. He thinks there’s some truth in that. I wonder what he thinks of truth.
Conversation continues and I go ahead and he says no one can know what is truly inside a man, so I foolishly list external things like joy, kindness, and other fruits of the Spirit. He disagrees, saying its all a little superficial. He’s completely right, of course. Those things in themselves are nothing. The only thing that matters and will ever matter is Jesus. Do they have Jesus in them or not? There is no other distinction.
I meet up with Alay and Ben, and Alay doesn’t know about Patrick at this point, but he will soon. There are a few questions I’m asked to answer which I will summarize as this:
Am I saved?
I don’t care how people put it – most things people do, ask, or think as a Christian revolves around this one question. I quickly discern that the conversation is all about self, self, self. I’ll change the focus.
Let me propose the anti-thesis.
Is my life bringing glory to God or not?
Now the question no longer looks inward to self, but turns outward towards God. When we truly get to the state of asking this question, then it matters not whether we end up in heaven or hell, because we are deserving of hell regardless of works.
When the Christian stops looking at self and removes self from the throne, the focus is now on the LORD. We bring glory to God and let Him do the rest, most problems in the Christian’s life would be solved, if they just did this very thing.
I head downstairs and my hearts on fire. I speak with Will about the things of the Kingdom – staring at him I don’t feel a hint of doubt in my bones when I speak to him.
‘Patrick is going to unite this church.’
I stare into his eyes and I see them well up. I wonder if he hears that or if he believes that. Patrick, belief is more than what humanistic definitions will tell you. It is the most powerful weapon a Christian can have along with God’s word.
I meet Simon, CEO of pioneers.org. We talk about loving the masses versus the individual, and conclude both are important. I’m meeting with him tomorrow to plan my impromptu talk on Sunday.
I drive home, and as I’m praying I begin to understand and weep over the selfishness of modern Christians today. We claim to possess the key to unconditional love and everlasting life, but 90% of us are too selfish to ever share it with anyone even though its freely given.
I weep and repent of my selfishness now and over my life, and sheepishly put my hand up to love the Patrick’s of this world. The ordinary man, so to speak. We are watchmen (Ezekiel 33) and will be held accountable for men’s blood if we don’t blow the trumpet.
I go from weeping bitterly to laughing with Jesus in the span of 2 minutes. We talk and He asks what I would ask for if I could have anything in the world. I think hard and know I would ask for the LORD to speak of me after I die because I know that is truth. I think harder and it hits me so simply.
I want the LORD to say of me:
Terence Wong believes in Jesus Christ.
I read a prayer list at night and I use the word of God to cast doubt out of my heart and render it useless and ineffective against me now and forevermore. (Matthew 16:19, Mark 11:25)
Patrick, God’s word created man, and it is far better than any modern medicine. By His word we will command your eyes to see. Believe and don’t doubt.
Thoughts from Joel
The more I grow, the more I realize the gigantic obstacle our selfishness is to our obedience to Christ, and because of me placing increasing importance on being completely humble towards God in our lives, I couldn’t help but read this post with a big stupid grin on my face.
The journals up to this point have shown many aspects of Terence, including his faith and boldness. Yet to me (and Terence if you look at DAY 4), selfishness has been one of the biggest obstacles Terence has, at the time unnoticeably, struggled with during this ordeal, and here we have the post where Terence has finally begun to understand the selfishness that exists in all of us, and the importance of vanquishing that selfishness in order to give our entire selves to Christ.
I thought Terence’s epiphany could largely be seen in his asking of two questions:
“Am I saved?” and “Is my life bringing glory to God?”
These are the questions of Christianity, aren’t they? To me, they reflect the level of growth a person has reached, with the first question something a new Christian may ask themselves, and the second question representing the growth in us as we mature in our relationship with Christ.
Maybe you’re just starting to ask yourself if you’re saved or not, or maybe you’ve just begun to realize that this life isn’t about you, but about bringing glory to the One bigger than you and everything else in this world. Maybe you’re living a selfish Christianity, but at some point we all must realize our irrelevance, and the relevance that this realization gives us in the overarching plans of God.
It is not until we realize that we are never number one that we can ultimately realize what we can accomplish through the One.
Finding significance in my insignificance,