If Jesus was to write a letter/text/email to us as a church today, what do you think he would say?
Do you remember the day when you first found Jesus for yourself? Do you remember feeling excited, feeling loved, feeling like you wanted to give all you have, live your whole life for him? That you just wanted more and more and more?
Do you still feel like that today? Or has it just got a bit more standard, a bit more “yeah, so…”, a bit more pedestrian, a bit more boring?
That’s what has happened to the church in Ephesus. They were on fire for God to start with. They had done so many good things. They had kept going. They had got the bad people out and the good people in, and had just kept on keeping on. They were doing so much, that they had forgotten why they were doing it. Serving had become a chore rather than a joy. Coming to church was about doing, not being. They were no longer in love with Jesus like they had been to start with.
It’s so easy to be like that. To forget the excitement. To forget why the Gospel is really such phenomenally good news for us all. It’s easy to be in that place where being a Christian is so natural and normal that there is no challenge left.
But when you’re in that place, you’ve lost the joy. You’ve lost the love, and basically you’re missing the point. Jesus calls the church to repent of this. To open their ears and their eyes to what God is doing all around them and turn back to him.
By all means, keep on keeping on. But don’t forget the joy of the Gospel in the process. That Jesus loves even you, even me so much that he died for us, and because of that we have been made free. Don’t lose the joy.
Lord God, thank you for all that you’ve done for us. Help us to keep the joy. Help us to keep our love strong for you. Amen.
What can you do today that reflects the joy of the Gospel?