Discerning Church Learning to discern the movement of God's Spirit

Careful Living

I was eating lunch today at the student center at Ball State. College students are back and the place was buzzing. My friend and I were talking about the hectic schedules that everyone seems to have. While technology allows us to accomplish, with a button press, what took our ancestors hours to complete, our lives are busier than ever. We mindlessly run from one activity to the other. As I prepare for this week’s sermon, I find Paul’s admonition particularly relevant in our culture. He tells us,

(Ephesians 5:15 NIV) Be very careful, then, how you live . . .

While many of us have trouble just getting through the day, Paul calls us to a higher level of intentionality. The word that is translated live in the text is the Greek word peripateo. It is often translated as walk. We have this image of carefully walking through life. Paul also tells us to live

(Ephesians 5:16 NIV) making the most of every opportunity

The word opportunity is an interesting word; it is sometimes translated as time. There are at least two words in the Greek that we translate as time. The first is chronos. As you might imagine, it has to do with chronological time. But another word describes significant moments in time; it is the word kairos. These moments are less about chronology and more about significance. You probably remember moments like these, the birth of your first child or your first date. Yet if we slow down enough, we might discover these moments each and every day. This is what Paul is saying. We should be careful how we live, making the most of those kairos moments in our lives. These are the moments of significance, moments when God speaks, moves, acts. He goes on to describe living life filled with the Spirit. Again, Paul’s expectation is that each day would consist of what we might call “God moments”. And we should be careful, paying attention and living in these moments.

I am excited to study this passage with our congregation on Sunday. In our hurried world, it is particularly powerful. Ephesians 5:15-21.