J.R. Bronger, who works with the congregation at Danville, along with his lovely wife Sue were our special guests this morning as J.R. came to teach our Bible class. He began class retelling a story of 12-year-old David Philip Vetter who had a severe-combined-immune deficiency (SDIC), meaning he had no immune system and any exposure to bacteria or germs could be fatal for him. A sterile chamber was built in which David lived and he became known as the “bubble boy.”
Camp is like being in a bubble. Campers’ association with godly adults and young people is a bubble. While here, it is as if we are isolated and shielded from the world in a bubble. Camp is an island fortress against the outside world, but we can’t live at camp–we must leave camp and face the world. Unfortunately, the world is vicious and it is Satan’s domain (II Corinthians 4:4). Are you prepared to leave the bubble? We can learn from the lesson of Peter who said he would never deny Christ, be we know he did three times (Matthew 26:31-35, 69-75). As we go out into the world, we must pray that we will be kept from sin (John 17:15) as we go out into the bubble of the world (I Corinthians 15:10). Statistics show that 1 in 4 people will die spiritually (II Timothy 4:10). Christ is the only protection we have (Colossians 1:27).
Here are some suggestion to heed living outside the bubble:
1. Have your own faith (Hebrews 11:6). Faith is belief, trust, and confidence in God–it’s more than just believing in God. Many young people believe IN God, but don’t believe God. When we believe God, He will control your life (Jonah 3:5; Acts 27:24,25; John 6:68). Our faith must be our own, not merely the faith of our parents (Luke 6:35,36; II Timothy 1:12; 2:15; Galatians 2:20). If we don’t each have our own faith, God will NOT be relevant in our lives.
2. Nurture your faith. We must give our faith great care and attention so it will grow. We must not go through life thinking Christianity is just a list of do’s and don’ts (Ephesians 2:10; Luke 6:46). Reducing Christianity to mere rule keeping makes it about perception (Matthew 23:23-28). Christianity is not just knowing the truth, but rather doing the truth, BEING a Christian (I Peter 1:16).
3. Admit your need for God’s grace (Ephesians 2:8,9; Romans 6:23). Salvation is not deserved or earned, but rather gifted to us through God’s grace (Micah 7:18,19). We must not trust in our heritage, our goodness, or our strength (Luke 18:9-14). We must admit that we need God’s grace daily and should extend that grace to others.
We must help and encourage one another, and most importantly, focus on the Word of God (Psalm 119:11). We must honor and magnify His Word (Psalm 138:2). We must remember to make wise choices living outside the bubble because God has set before us “this day life and good, and death and evil” (Deuteronomy 30:15). We should all have the attitude of Joshua: “but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord” (Joshua 24:15). We should determine to be a Daniel (Daniel 1:8) and have the resolve of Joseph (Genesis 39:8,9).