Archives for July 2017

A Note From Ashley – July 2017 Newsletter

There’s a good chance you’ve seen this YouTube clip before (if not, watch it before reading further). It’s Allen Iverson in a press conference. He’s just been asked about missing a basketball practice and his response is hilarious. Iverson responds at one point, “We’re talking about practice? How silly is that?… When you come in the arena and you see my play, you see me play, don’t you?”

Here’s the thing. Iverson wants to talk about showing up for the game without talking about how much more important the practice is. As followers of Jesus, we might easily fall into the same trap (or am I the only one?). We want to just be Christians without practicing being Christians. Have you ever caught yourself thinking or saying outloud something to the effect of, “I’m just not feeling Jesus these days,” or  “I don’t really know if this Christian thing is it for me.” Our feelings are important and we should pay close attention to them. BUT. Your feelings won’t sustain your relationship with Jesus. Practice will, practice that looks like:

  • spending time in scripture;
  • spending time with the “great cloud of witnesses” in your life and in the life of this church who have experienced God in a long list of ways (especially those in a different age demographic than yours);
  • worshiping together;
  • playing together;
  • looking for the things in this world that do not look like God’s kingdom come and putting our hands, feet, and voices to work to bring that kingdom.

This is what practice looks like. The mountain top highs will not sustain you or me in our faith. “Feeling” like being a Christian will not sustain you or me in our faith. Going it alone will not sustain you or me in our faith. At the very end of the clip, Iverson responds to a question,

“How in the world can I make my teammates better by practicing?” That’s the whole point! Show up. Practice your faith. It matters for others and it matters for you that you do this faith thing in community.

Don’t just wait until you feel like it to show up for the game. And don’t try to play it alone, either.

Practice? We’re talking about practice? Yes. We are.

What’s your practice this week, next week, next month that will sustain and grow your relationship with Jesus?

See you at church and around town. -Ashley

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