Don't assume you are a Christian, find out for sure!

The true story is told that a national magazine once assigned a photographer to take pictures of a forest fire.  They told him that a small plane would be waiting for him at the airport at a certain time so as to fly him over the fire.

The photographer arrived at the airstrip just an hour before sundown.  Sure enough, a small Cessna airplane stood waiting.  He jumped in and shouted, “Let’s go”.  The pilot, a tense looking man, turned the plane into the wind and soon they were in the air, though flying somewhat erratically.

“Fly over the north side of the fire”, said the photographer, “and make several  low-level passes.”  “Why?” asked the nervous pilot, “Because I’m going to take pictures – I’m a photographer.”  The face of the nervous pilot went white – “You mean you’re not the flight instructor?”

‘Assumptions’ – we all make them from time to time and in most cases it concerns things which are  unimportant.  Sometimes however, people make assumptions which could cost them their life. The Bible commands us to “test all things” (1st Thessalonians Ch 5 v 21), in other words we are Divinely warned to be wary of making assumptions.  Instead, God wants us to carefully check things out to see “if they really are so”; He wants us to examine claims in depth so that we aren’t misled.  In today’s society this is perhaps one of the most broken commandments of all! In our fractured society people seem only too willing to “clutch at straws” regarding what they choose to believe, without testing and checking it out.  The result is that individuals frequently get themselves into all kinds of trouble.

 What do I mean?  Well, there is a vast range of examples.  Here are just a few I have come across.  There are those who wrongly assume that science and Christianity are opposed to each other.  The reality is that there are millions of scientists who are practising Christians.  (Science merely explains “how” something works.  Theology tells us “why” it exists in the first place.)  Because of their false assumptions they never examine the claims of the Bible and in turn deny themselves solace and help when times are hard.  Then again, there are those who wrongly assume that spiritualism and the occult is “just a bit of fun”.  They fail to check out the source of the power that lies behind “this so called bit of fun” and experience all sorts of unpleasant things happening to them, until they make a complete  break from it.

And then there are those who wrongly assume they are Christians and think God is well pleased with them.  This kind of person may even go to Church regularly; they may be very involved in all kinds of outwardly good activities – but as Jesus said to the religious people of His day in Mark 7 “they honour me with their lips, but their heart is far from me”.  This is the most dangerous false assumption of all – people who assume they know God, but in reality their hearts are far from Him.

Recently I came across a moving account of just such a person and that person was actually in the ministry!  His name was Dr F.B. Meyer.  In his diary he describes how one day he was sitting in his study reflecting on his life and his ministry.  He felt deep down that something was not right in his Christian life, but he couldn’t put his finger on it.  All of a sudden he sensed the Lord challenge him with these words, “Let me have the keys to your life”.  The experience was so profound Meyer actually reached for the keys in his pocket.  “Are all the keys there?”  “Yes Lord all except the key to one small room in my life.”  He then sensed Christ say “If you cannot trust me in all the rooms of your life, I am unable to accept any of the keys.”Meyer was so overwhelmed with the feeling that Christ was moving out of his life because he was excluding Him from one interest in his life, that he cried out, “Come back Lord, and take the keys to all the rooms of my life.”  Often people assume they are Christians – they don’t realise that a Christian is someone who is close to God in their heart.  A Christian is someone who has given “each  room in their heart” over to God.

On a regular basis we must take time to really reflect on the various spiritual assumptions we are living by and following.  Frequently, let us examine our hearts and our beliefs and make sure we really are close to God in the depths of our being. Make no assumptions!