Winning at Home
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Whenever you look at a sports schedule for the season you'll see one of two letters next to each game—an H or an A. Now those H's are the ones the players look forward to the most; that's the home games. And, of course, the A is the away games. Now, if you're an athlete, you know that your best chance of winning is probably in your home setting. In sports, it's generally easier to win at home and it's tougher to win on the road, which is actually the opposite of how it is in our personal lives.
Our word for today from the Word of God comes from the fourth chapter of the book of Luke. We're going to begin reading at verse 16. Now, here's a little background: Jesus is getting ready to launch His public ministry. He will only have three years to do what He must do to preach His message and save the world. It's interesting that He spends 40 days alone in the wilderness before He begins His public ministry. And I'm sure part of that time must have been to decide His game plan for reaching the world. I mean what an assignment!
Look where He starts when we get into Luke 4. He's left the wilderness, the game plan is now in action, and here's what it says. "He went to Nazareth where He had been brought up, and on the Sabbath Day He went into the Synagogue, as was His custom. And He stood up to read. The scroll of the Prophet Isaiah was handed to Him. Unrolling it, He found the place where it is written: 'The Spirit of the Lord is on Me, because He has anointed Me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent Me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to release the oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor.'"
Look where Jesus started His ministry—at home. Yeah, His home town of Nazareth. Now, unlike sports, I think we find it easier to win on the road and tougher to win at home. But that's where your Christ-life has to work or you have nothing credible to give to the rest of the world. So I have to ask, "How is your faith working among the people who know you best...who know the real you?"
Your parents—I wonder if your parents, when you became a follower of Christ, did they get a better son? Did they get a better daughter out of the deal? Or did the family members around you get a better husband because you came to Christ, a better wife, a better parent? Is your Christianity transforming the kind of person you are in the most intimate exposed areas of your life? You know where that is. It's at home; it's in your family.
See, if you've got something real, the presence of Christ in you should be bringing the presence of Christ into your home. You walk in; He should walk in. Maybe you're a winner on the road. You're a hero to people at church, in the community, that ministry you're involved in. You're a hero at work. You're maybe a hero in the Christian world. But spiritually are you a hero to your family? They should get your spiritual best, not your leftovers.
Maybe it's time to take a step back and commit yourself to first of all represent Christ, be His ambassador. Be like Jesus with your family. Whatever others get, well it's simply going to be the overflow of what you are living in front of your family. Jesus started at home. So should you.
© (c) Ronald P. Hutchcraft
Distributed by Ron Hutchcraft Ministries, Inc.