Christian Clusters & the 57th Floor – Daniel Diaddigo

Great post from Daniel Diaddigo’s recent email newsletter. Had to pass it on to our readers. Great insight for living.

In Christ,

AP

“Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – His good, pleasing and perfect will.”
Romans 12;2
This world has a pattern to it. I’m watching this pattern from the lobby of the Chase tower in Chicago.

      The pattern repeats itself in leather satchels and smart, form fitting business skirts. Over there is a guy waving his arm to make an important point – he’s on the phone.

      I’m people watching in the lobby because I’m early for a meeting on the 57th floor.  The world says this is a good thing – to be on the 57th floor. Because the 57th floor is the top floor and important things happen at the top. This is the world’s pattern, the one the apostle Paul referred to in the twelfth chapter of his letter to the Romans.

      Don’t misunderstand – we need to be excellent in all we do. We need to practice our crafts as living sacrifices to God. This is how we worship, but the world’s pattern diverts us to pursue worthless things. The exchange that runs the top floor trades acceptance for performance and rewards for pleasing men and owning things.

Easy to describe – not so easy to avoid.

      I’ve known men who believe that avoiding the world’s pattern means checking out of the system. They think they’re coming out of Babylon. I think they’re mostly going into hiding, lights under bowls – Christian clusters fueled by fear and self-absorption.

      Jesus engaged the world system in hand-to-hand combat and so should we. The battle, the Apostle Paul tells us, is not “out there”.  It’s between your ears. Paul says renewal, not retraction, is the remedy to the world’s pull.

“[B]e transformed by the renewing of your mind.

      Does your thought life follow the world’s pattern? When your heart speaks does it agree with the top floor? Do you trade pieces of your soul in order to go higher?

      We’ve all heard the sermons – you renew your mind by replacing bad habits with good ones. Change gossip for encouragement. Trade the internet for Scripture. Replace worry with prayer.  All good – but I think missing the center.

      Look at verse 1.  It’s the set up for what’s next. 

“[I]n view of God’s mercy…”

      My attention has been fastened to these words all week. I can’t get past them. The verses that proceed layout God’s pattern.

      Fifty-seven floors is so, so very small when I consider the height and depth and breadth of God’s love for me. When I hold His mercy in view, how can I find satisfaction in anything else? No wonder everything else seems so empty! No wonder all those people are scrambling for the top. They know there’s more.

      And the world tells them (and us) that “more” is higher, always higher. Work harder. Another compromise, another floor – until you reach the top. That’s where life is.

      Do you want to renew your mind? Command the eyes of your soul to fix themselves upon Jesus until His mercy burns a silhouette into the fabric of your being.

      Really, truly, there is nothing else!

      In view of God’s mercy, we don’t have to search for life through the world’s pattern.

      We don’t have to squeeze out performance or pander to please men. Jesus has already performed for us and God is now pleased with us. He has saved us from the top floor.

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