Dec. 20, 2018

Levels of Intensity

“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden.” Matthew 5:14

I blogged about our sameness in Christ a few days ago. Today I want to talk about levels of intensity. Throughout the bible, it is obvious that each believer had a mission to accomplish. Some were assigned roles that required a great deal more intensity than others.

My fear about discussing intensity is that some people read it as pride. I happen to believe that each of Christ’s disciples carried their own levels of intensity just as they had very different personalities. The Old Testament prophets and leaders reveal that we are not all alike. All of God’s children, however, are deeply loved.

Even in the Book of Revelation, John wrote about the varying levels of spiritual intensity among the seven churches. Some were described as vibrant. Others as dead. Still another was called out for being lukewarm. Intensity is obvious to the Holy Spirit. It cannot be faked. It cannot be hidden.

Almost 20 years ago, my favorite Christian radio station began a focus after Thanksgiving and until the first of the year playing nothing but Christmas songs. At the time, I worked wwwwaaaayyyyyy across town. I guarantee that I heard every rendition of “Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer” and “Here Comes Santa Claus” ever produced. Sometimes they were all on the same day during the same commute. I wasn’t impressed.

I risk being accused of being the Grinch. I have playfully been called, “Mrs. Scrooge.” (Hmmmm….at least I think it was playful?) But, my level of intensity about the meaning of Christmas simply doesn’t make way for five renditions of “Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer” from my favorite Christian radio station within a one-and-a-half-hour commute to and from work. I know – Bah Humbug, right?

A few weeks ago, I came out of our worship service feeling a high level of intensity. The sermon was amazing. The music was outstanding. My connection with the Spirit was undeniable. As I journeyed on my way home, I turned on the radio to continue my time of prayer, praise and worship privately. I listened, instead, to “Santa Claus is Coming to Town.” While my favorite CHRISTIAN radio station has shortened the duration of its Christmas music focus and began tossing in real Christian music in between the holiday cheer, my heart sank. Really? Sunday morning music includes “Santa Claus is Coming to Town?” Am I missing something?

For those who say, just listen to CDs during this season – that really isn’t my point. I do understand this particular radio station is attempting to “woo” non-believers by appealing to their festive side, but I suspect the practice of failing to honor the Sabbath Day by keeping it holy just might fall under, “Lukewarm.”

Let’s all say it together, “Bah Humbug!”