Recently, I purchased a set of microfiber cloths. These are the extra-gentle wipes used to clean sensitive surfaces like computer and touch screens. Numerous people kept pointing out that my iPad screen could stand to lose a few fingerprints, so it seemed like a good investment.
I wanted to be sure that the ones I purchased had no cleaning products in them, so I checked the back of the package. They were exactly what I was looking for, but when I checked, I was surprised to see directions and I wondered what directions I would need to safely clean my touchscreen. They read, " Wipe desired area."
I actually laughed out loud in the office supply store. "So, it's come to this," I thought, "We are at a point where we need to be directed to use a microfiber wipe to wipe something." It was funny, and a little scary. Did someone really need those instructions?
The more I thought about it, I realized we are bombarded by shallow advice and information all the time. From near magical diet tips to another set of "Ten Great Secrets to Save Your Marriage," the priceless tidbits abound. Most of these offering little more new knowledge than the back of my microfiber cloths, but somehow making us feel like we have a deeper understanding.
Sadly, this cheap guidance frequently enters our spiritual lives, as countless voices attempt to reduce our faith down to a few simple directions. Don't get me wrong, Jesus was clear that the message of the Gospel could be expressed as, "Love God. Love people." It is a truth grasped in a moment, but learning to live it out takes a lifetime.
Our faith demands an investment on our part. There are no shortcuts or cheap advice, only a willingness to be led by the Spirit as we grow deeper in our faith. It is my hope that the people of God will never be satisfied with another round of obvious advice, but will seek out a deeper relationship with God. There, we can daily grow in the knowledge and love of God, and prepare ourselves to bring substance to a world drowning in the frivolous. It is a challenge worth taking for ourselves and for the world.
Today, let's choose to go deep; to move beyond a superficial relationship with church or religion, and take hold of the Savior of the world. Let's echo the words of the first disciples when they said, "Where else can we go? For you alone have the words of life."