I hope to guide you on this idea of weaving Christianity into the fabric of our everyday lives. Allowing us to live through the faith in that gap between Sunday sermons and the rest of your week. My goal is to present you with some practical suggestions to deepen your faith beyond pews and prayer closets, uncovering truths from Scripture about how you can root yourself in Christ even through daunting household tasks.

References to Bible Verses:

Joshua 24:15; 1 Corinthians 14:33; 1 Corinthians 13:4-7; Ephesians 4:32; Matthew 22:21-22; Proverbs 27:17; Colossians 3:12-14; Matthew 23:13-38; Colossians 3:23-24; Lamentations 3:22-23; Mark 10:45; Exodus 20:9-10;

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Transcript

Jason: Welcome and thank you for listening. My name is Jason and I am your host. In this episode, I hope to guide you on this idea of weaving Christianity into the fabric of our everyday lives, allowing us to live through the faith in that gap between Saturday sermons and, well, the rest of your week. My goal is to present you with some practical suggestions to deepen your faith beyond pews and prayer closets, uncovering truths from Scripture about how you can root yourself in Christ, even through daunting household tasks.

So, grab your Bible, open your heart, and let's embark on this journey together as we discover what it truly means to live in the faith.

I don't know about you, but when I walk out of church, I feel inspired. I've just received a full four course meal of spiritual fulfillment, and I'm ready to take on the world.

But come Monday morning, I'm already starting to feel a little hungry again. I believe every church should encourage its members to feed themselves throughout the week. Because we must address our own spiritual hunger just as we must address our physical hunger. But how exactly do we do that? Throughout the week, I will pray, I'll read my Bible, and yet sometimes it just doesn't feel like enough.

If you felt the same, I hope I can provide some ideas throughout this episode.

Let's start by talking about faith at home. Creating a Christ centered environment within your home. This begins with the characteristic of joy. But before we go too much further, I want to create a distinction between joy and happiness.

And I know it feels like semantics, and there are varying opinions about this, but I truly believe there is a distinction between these two that is relevant. So happiness is a mental condition. Often, when we think of being happy, we tie that to some worldly possession, or an accomplishment, or the people in our lives, or even an event that might occur.

There's nothing wrong with feeling happiness, but understand that it is a temporary state of mind that is predicated off of something in this world. Feeling happiness can certainly contribute to our joy, but we don't have to be happy all the time to experience being joyful. Joy on the other hand is the result of being rooted in our faith in Jesus Christ.

Pastor Rick Warren teaches us that joy is the settled assurance that God is in control of all the details of our lives. The quiet confidence that ultimately everything is going to be alright, and the determined choice to praise God in every situation. That sounds pretty great, right? Understand that I, and many others, have identified this distinction between happiness and joy.

And I do this as a means to illustrate the importance of seeking satisfaction from God, and not the world. Now truly, there is no distinction in scripture between the words happiness and joy. But I find this is a useful way to make the comparison between godly fulfillment versus worldly fulfillment. If we seek satisfaction from the world, it has a shelf life, and it is usually circumstantial.

However, if we seek satisfaction from God, it has everlasting effects, and it's a gift from our Lord. So I continue to use this distinction to make it easier to understand. But I prefer to make sure you understand the truth that scripture just doesn't distinguish between these two words. Now circling back to creating a joyful home.

As I mentioned, this idea comes from our faith in Jesus Christ. And scripture does support this in Joshua 24:15, when he wrote, BBut as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord." Verses 18 through 19 go on to describe how God brought them out of slavery, performed great signs, protected them, and drove out the nations, including the Amorites, who were enemies of God's people.

Joy is setting into the idea that God is in control and he will protect us. But protect us from what exactly? And I know we want to believe that God will prevent bad things from ever happening to us in this world, but that's not how it works. God's protection is spiritual. It goes far beyond this world.

Unfortunately, things can and often do happen while we were living our lives here. When bad things happen, seek God's guidance because he will absolutely get you through the turmoil one way or another. But the end goal isn't a prosperous life with no problems. The end goal is the kingdom of heaven.

Understand that this is how we root ourselves in joy. Now, I know I've spent a lot of time related to joy, but this is a big part of it overall. But I want to move on to other things that make your home more Christ centered. And the next thing on the list is to create an orderly home. 1 Corinthians 14:33 teaches us, "For God is not a God of confusion, but of peace."

And a Christ centered home will be a place of peace rather than confusion. Get the chaos out of your home and simplify your life, which means you do what you can to keep the influences of the world outside of your home. When you're looking around your house, start asking the question, how does this enhance my family and glorify God?

Now, a big part of Christianity is service. And if you want to live in a Christ centered home, then make your home a service centered home. Build an atmosphere that is filled with acts of kindness, humility, respect, And most of all, love. Create an environment centered on selflessness and be joyful doing those mundane duties like doing the dishes, mowing the lawn, laundry, and so on.

Make sure the focus is on building up the family as a whole, because by doing that, you are serving the Lord. My final thought on this is to make sure your home is a place where spiritual disciplines are being practiced. Bring this study of scripture into your home and make it a common practice. Spend time in prayer as a family.

Even meditate on God's Word together. And it's also important to spend time alone in the presence of the Lord and let your children see you doing this because they will learn a lot more from what you do than what you tell them to do or what you say. Now, let's move on to discussing faith and relationships.

And I think we can all agree that relationships can be both a source of immense joy, as well as significant challenges. So how can Christian principles be lived out every day in our relationships? The foundation of Christian relationships is absolutely rooted in love. And in 1 Corinthians 13:4-7, well, love is explained perfectly.

"Love is patient. Love is kind. It does not envy. It does not boast. It is not proud. It does not dishonor others. It is not self seeking. It is not easily angered. It keeps no records of wrongdoing. Love does not delight in evil, but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres."

We are called by Christ to love each other. And I admit, some people make that really hard for us. Others make it really easy. But Christ didn't call us to love people who are easy to love. We are to love everyone. It's the most powerful and most important role we have as Christians here on earth. But when we do encounter those people who are more challenging, it's time to turn towards forgiveness and grace.

Ephesians 4:32 instructs us to "Be kind and compassionate to one another. Forgive each other just as Christ God forgave you." I understand that living this out is far more challenging than reading the verse. I know a common argument is, but what if they do it again? Well, they might. But consider that when God forgives our sins, he, he knows we're going to sin again, and oftentimes the same way, and he will forgive us again.

Consider the parable of the unmerciful servant in Matthew 22:21-22. It starts the story with the following, "Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother or sister who sins against me? Up to seven times? Jesus answered, I tell you, not seven times, but seventy seven times."

Jesus just finished talking about agreement and unity. And Peter is trying to sound extremely loving and trying to be the good little disciple by suggesting we forgive seven times. Understand that three times was the acceptable limit taught by many Jewish rabbis in that period of time. So forgiving seven times is well above the standard.

But Jesus reply tells us we should forgive not seven times, but 77 times. Now, many scholars believe this is meant to suggest 70 times seven or 490 times. Yet Jesus was intending to mean we forgive an unlimited number of times. It seems weird that Jesus would suggest on the 491st time, we don't forgive.

It's a euphemism. Unlimited forgiveness seems like it's a bit outrageous. Do we just let people keep trotting on us perpetually? No, absolutely not. We are to forgive an unlimited number of times, but that doesn't mean we have to put ourselves in a position to offer forgiveness continually. So if someone betrays us, we forgive.

And then we acknowledge that person is untrustworthy and we guard against that. But consider for a moment the amazing way God has forgiven us, and realize that withholding forgiveness from others is shameful at best. Alright, so we've added love and forgiveness to our daily practices, but we also need to be out there as beacons of hope for our fellow Christians and fellow man.

In our faith journey, we are also called to uplift and support each other, as told in Proverbs 27:17, "As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another." Consider this. Iron can sharpen another piece of iron, but this comes through striking, friction, and sometimes with sparks. By hammering a sword repeatedly, a blacksmith can sharpen a sword, right?

We are called to sharpen each other, our friends, our family, and others, but this could involve a bit of friction, and it may come with some sparks. In other words, we shouldn't be afraid of a little healthy conflict and honesty. It might come with friction, but if it comes from a place of love, you're doing God's work.

Now, that doesn't mean you become a human wrecking ball with each other. We should always start with love, and even forgiveness at times, and then work up from there. Also, I talk about the importance of finding community in Christ in episode 63, so please go back and listen to that episode for a bit more on this topic.

Have you ever heard the phrase, actions speak louder than words? Colossians 3:12-14, advises as follows, "Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourself with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another. If any of you has a grievance against someone, forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues, put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity."

As you work through living out your faith every day through love, forgiveness, and encouragement, witnessing through actions will become natural, a natural consequence. If we are authentic in our faith, others will see Christ in us.

This includes your efforts at work, your time with your family, or out in social settings. Let your actions reflect your commitment to Jesus and to be an authentic Christian. But understand this, you want to do more than just look like a good Christian. Make the effort to be a good Christian and let others soak in the Christ oozing from your pores.

I know that was a pretty wacky metaphor, but hopefully you get my point. Christ wants us to be humble and live his commandments. In Matthew 23:13-38, Jesus is pretty hard on the Pharisees, calling them hypocrites, fools, and a brood of vipers, because they made sure the public saw this outward appearance of holiness.

But God saw the corruption and hypocrisy going on inside of them, and so did Jesus. Be genuine in your faith, and you could spread the gospel without saying a word, and you will foster relationships that are genuine as well. And the last thing I would like to mention about your faith in relationships is this.

Take time to reflect on yourself. Sometimes we get sidetracked or misguided, and misunderstandings occur between us and others. Take time to Take time through prayer and guidance from your scriptures to assess those situations and be willing to accept responsibility for how you might have strayed from a path of love, forgiveness, and encouragement.

Approach these situations with humility and a real desire to reconcile. I mean, it's not always easy. In fact, it's usually not. But extending your forgiveness, seeking to understand rather than just to be right, will bring us closer and strengthen our bonds with each other.

Now comes the fun part. Let's talk about the bane of everyone's existence. Doing those pesky daily burdens and executing them as a faithful disciple of Christ. You know what I mean. Dealing with work or doing those daily tasks at home. Let's start by recognizing that work and our daily tasks are not separate from our faith journey. In fact, they are an integral part of it.

Wherever you are, whether at the office, at home, or somewhere in between, Your actions and attitudes can reflect both your faith and glorify God. But let's start with work. In Colossians 3:23-24, we are reminded, "Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ that you are serving."

If you're familiar with the Bible, you probably saw that verse coming. Probably a mile away, huh? You The bottom line is this. No matter what your daily responsibilities are, approach them with dedication and integrity, knowing that you are ultimately serving God.

It may take some time, and a little practice, but this perspective will transform mundane tasks into meaningful acts of worship. God has promised to reward us for good works. Now, don't get the idea that working hard will get you into heaven. It won't. Only through Christ do we get to heaven, but it might grant us a reward once we're there.

So easier said than done, right? How do we shift ourselves from being clock watchers and hating our job to working exuberantly for the Lord? It's gonna take time. The first thing I would suggest is that you take a moment to pray before you start your day. If you have a long commute, it might be a good opportunity to just say a prayer on your drive and maybe even have a little conversation with God.

If you do this, please keep your eyes open. I'm just saying. When you are tasked with the impossible things that you have to do at work, ask the Holy Spirit to help you find a way. Invite God into your workplace to labor alongside you. Even if you don't actually accomplish the task, I guarantee you'll get further along than if you tried to go it alone.

I even go so far as to say a prayer before I get onto a challenging conference call, asking our Lord to inspire me to be productive and helpful. If you are living a Christ centered life, then your boss is Jesus. It's true your human masters, as this verse calls it, are in charge of your employment, your paycheck, your reviews, and so on.

They can make your life challenging. I get that. But when you answer to Christ, then you must trust that Christ is in charge and you will be taken care of. Do what is right. Work with integrity and with all your heart to please the Lord. Trust me when I tell you, you won't. Get this right the first time.

Maybe not the second time or even the third. You get my point. That doesn't matter. Make your intention to do better. And remember Lamentations 3:22-23, "It is of the Lord's great mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions never fail. They are new every morning. Great is your faithfulness."

So if you don't get it right today, it's okay. You're granted new graces and new opportunities tomorrow. I've focused mainly on work, but this holds true for daily tasks as well. Find joy in vacuuming, doing laundry and washing the dishes. You should also be committed to serving others through work. Just like you want to create a service centered home, create a service centered work.

Jesus taught us the importance of serving others in Mark 10:45, when he said, "For even the son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister. And to give his life a ransom for many." Think about how the things that you do can serve others, whether it's serving a customer, supporting a team, writing a report, and so on.

Every single interaction is an opportunity to demonstrate Christ like love and humility. Now, I have talked a lot about working hard and serving others, and while God has designed us to work, He also commanded us to rest. Exodus 20:9-10a reminds us. "Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work."

Make time for rest and reflection. This balance is very important to maintaining physical, emotional, and spiritual well being. Use that time of rest to connect with God, recharge, and prepare for the next week ahead of you.

This episode ended up shorter than what I originally expected, but I think Discussing faith at home, faith in relationships, and faith at work and daily tasks is a really good start.

But don't stop there. Take a look around and try to find ways to weave your faith into your everyday activities and let it transform those mundane moments into meaningful expressions of faith. Remember that living out our faith is a continuous journey, one where each day presents a whole new set of opportunities to reflect Christ's love and His teachings.

I encourage you to take what I've discussed today and apply it to your own life and trust that God will guide you and strengthen you every step of the way. Thank you for listening. I hope your faith will continue to grow and shine brightly in every aspect of your life. Be sure to check out the show notes for all of my links to my website, social media, and so on.

If you're enjoying this podcast, I ask you to consider ways to help support the show by going to https://myministrymission.com/support. But until next time, remember to read your Bibles, remember to love each other, and may the Lord bless you and keep you. God bless, everyone.