This blog post is part of my year-long series of posts on the New Testament. My church is on a year-long journey called Project 3:45, where we are reading the New Testament together this year. To join in, click here.
We organize our lives around the things that are most important to us, the things that matter most to us. It’s different things for different people. Some people organize their lives around work, some around the NCAA tournament, some around waiting to see if Peyton Manning is going to come play for the Titans. (Looks like he’s going to the Broncos, pastors all over Middle Tennessee are rejoicing because there’s still hope for church attendance in the fall!)
In the book of Acts, we see that Paul organized his whole life around Jesus. When given a chance to speak, Paul spoke about his faith in Christ. When he wrote, he wrote about his faith. He thought about his faith. His faith in Jesus was the most important thing in his life, and he organized everything else around it.
For one of the classes I’m currently taking at Vanderbilt Divinity School, I had to read an interview with a Muslim man who said, “[Islam] is a total way of life.” He also said that the best Muslims don’t fit their daily prayers into their schedules but organize the rest of their lives around the prayers. Many Christians, myself included, could learn a lot from that.
Then there’s Governor Felix in this story in Acts 24. Acts 24:25 says, As Paul talked about righteousness, self-control and the judgment to come, Felix was afraid and said, “That’s enough for now! You may leave. When I find it convenient, I will send for you.”
If I’m honest, he’s probably the character in the story I identify with more when he says, “When I find it convenient, I will send for you.” When I find it convenient, I’ll listen to you talk about your faith. When I find it convenient, I’ll try to learn about what you’re saying. When I find it convenient…
We organize our lives around what’s most important to us, what matters most to us. What is it for me? Do I have a faith of centrality or of convenience? One around which everything else is organized or one that gets organized around something else?