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"If I Had a Hammer"

To all you Peter, Paul, and Mary fans out there, this is not a tribute to their wonderful songwriting acumen. While I like them as a group, they have little relevance to what I want to talk about today. As many of you know October is Reformation Month. This is when we celebrate when Martin Luther penned the 95 theses and nailed them on the church door in Wittenberg on October 31, 1517 to protest the use of indulgences in the church. I can hear some of you saying out there "Yeah atta boy Luther! Stick it to the man!" However, Luther himself was very reluctant at first to post this type of document for all to see. You see, this was to go against the powers that be and he debated if he had the right to go against a "thousand years of tradition" as he put it. He prayed and asked God if this was the right thing to do. Thankfully God gave him the boldness to be able to do so and we now benefit from it today. He took his hammer and God's work of the reformation had begun through him. Do you sometimes wish that God would work through you in a similar way? You may be saying to yourself "If I had a hammer I would…" Well what would you do?

Often as Christians we have one of two attitudes when it comes to standing up for what is right. Some people think that God has called them to do all of these marvelous things for the Kingdom. His name is Holy Mega Hulk! Wait…I can see it now…He is equipped with my golden, saw bladed sword of the spirit, super-shiny shield of faith, super boots with elevated heels. To finish it off he's decked out in his custom made sequined golden spandex suit with a huge cross emblem adorning the center of it. He then traverses the valley of the shadow of death and starts to battle the evil foes of his God. He is suddenly backed into a corner surrounded by foes when suddenly he remembers his secret weapon. He pulls out his holy hand grenade and thrusts…. Wait…Do you think it's a little much? Maybe so… In this case the Christian has fabricated a world to which he can live out his fantasies, reveling in conflict. Often I want to tell these Super Christians "Hold on there Rambo! Have you heard of waiting on God?" In 1 Peter 5:5 the apostle states, "All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because, "God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble."

In the opposite extreme some Christians cower and hide when faced with adversity. His name is Timid Timmy. Often I think of him in terms of seasickness. What does he say when waves hit the ship? He says, "Don't rock the boat! It's making me sick at my stomach!" Timmy will often compromise the gospel in order to maintain his level of perceived safety and comfort. While we are not called to go out to go looking for trouble or injustices to rectify, we are called to be bold. Paul said in Ephesians 6:19-20 "And for me, that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my mouth boldly, to make known the mystery of the gospel, For which I am an ambassador in bonds: that therein I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak. We should boldly proclaim the truth to all we see."

As with many things in the Christian life, we often struggle to find the balance between standing up for truth yet being humble at the same time. The key to succeed in this endeavor is rather simple. It is something you hear, you must do it time and time again. You must pray for God to give you wisdom in how He should lead you! And it would probably be safe to say you should see if scripture backs up your ambitions. I don't recall the God's Mega Hulk being a character in scripture, or Timid Timmy for that matter. Like Luther let us be reluctant and humble heroes, ready to take our hammer and drive the Word of God into the hearts of men whenever we are called. Speaking of…. Where is my hammer? Before I change the world with it's blow, I promised my wife I'd fix the loose board on the boys' clubhouse. Who am I kidding! We all know she'll lovingly remove the hammer from my hand and do it herself. I guess I can get back to saving the world!

- Jordan McGehee