Chapter 6 Verse 1:
What are the errors that we fall into that prevent us (the church) from being as effective as we ought at restoring fallen believers? I believe there are errors on both sides of restoration which hinder the church. On the aggressive or prideful side, we can tend to play “sin cop.” We can become more focused on eradicating sin than upon seeing sinners redeemed. This can take the forms of legalism or truth without incarnation. On the passive or neglectful side, we can view those areas of life in which we feel are “no one else’s business.” It is uncomfortable and awkward to address these areas so we avoid them or pretend they do not exist.
Chapter 6 Verse 1:
To see Paul develop the posture/attitude of those who seeking to restore others further, consider 1 Thessalonians 5:14, “And we urge you, brothers, admonish the idle, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with them all.”
Chapter 6 Verse 3:
In how many ways can comparative thinking distract and/or distort the way we think about life, ourselves, and our relationship with God? When we compare ourselves to others we inevitably create some type of “scoring system.” This system assigns value or usefulness to each individual. From that point forward all of life is about what we have (or don’t have) to offer. We lose sight of the fact that God created us to receive glory from how He uses our strengths and weaknesses. Once we fall into comparative thinking we will either succumb to pride or insecurity. It is only when we capture Paul’s mindset in Galatians 6:14 that we are able to live with a Christ-centered confidence that is neither prideful nor insecure because (finally) life is not about us.
“Becoming a Balanced Sower”
There is so much to sow. Sowing to the Spirit involves everything that pertains to life and godliness (2 Pet. 1:3). There are more “good things” I “ought” to be doing than can be done in a single week. And God is not mocked. If I neglect sowing in one area of life, there will be a lack of harvest in that area. What can I do?
It is important to maintain two key things: (1) priorities and (2) balance. There needs to be a hierarchy to my relationships and activities. There also needs to a breadth. Too often we choose to only emphasize one of these wise sowing principles. We become so committed to the top priorities that life loses balance or we are so diversified in our activities that priorities are never enacted. And then the harvest comes.
Use the chart below (chart with grid lines available in PDF handout) to begin to think through the priorities and balance of your life. Prayerfully consider how God would have you sow during your current season of life.