I did an impromptu mini-chapel sermonette yesterday, but it was the result of work I had done on a passage several years ago. I still remember these questions and want to share them as I refocus on them once again:
The text is Colossians 3:17 And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
Two questions to consider when making decisions:
1. Can I do/say this in the name of the Lord Jesus?
– Can I take my girlfriend to a secluded spot and fool around with her…in the name of Jesus?
– Can I say this hurtful zinger I have about such and such…in the name of Jesus Christ?
2. Can I do/say this while giving thanks to God the Father?
– Thank you, God, for granting me this spectacular opportunity to cheat on my spouse. Praise be Your name.
– I give You thanks, Jesus, for allowing me the chance to sit next to someone smarter than me during this test. All glory to You!
Regret. Shame. Guilt.
These categories exist because there is a right, true, and pure way to live. Asking these two questions of the decisions we make could save us so much regret, shame, and guilt.
Had I asked these questions throughout my dating years, I wouldn’t have had such difficult conversations with Lindsey before we got married about my past. As Andy Stanley says, paraphrased, “In the future, your past will be in your present.” It’s so true.
What I wouldn’t give to go back and weigh the value of those words and the questions that come out of Colossians 3. How about you?