"Canon" comes from the Hebrew word Qaneh and the Greek Word Kanon. Both signify or represent a reed or a measuring stick. As I am reading this I think about how I measure up to God's standards. How do I measure up to what I am supposed to be as a Christian?
3 Things I could better focus on:
1) Guidance: Matthew 7:7 states that "Ask, and it shall be given to you. Seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you." All to often I skip a step in figuring out what I am supposed to do next in life. An opportunity may pop up and I suddenly am like..."Should I do this?" and start figuring out ways I could make it happen. Wait, James...did you forget something. What about what God wants? Did God put this in your life, maybe you should talk to Him first?" I always jump to conclusions on what I should do by myself without consulting the one who gives all.
Maybe this something is God's will for you, but James, did you ask for it? Did you go to God in prayer about it? When a church job eventually does open up for me and it is God's time to go into full-time ministry, and need to make sure I am going to God about every opportunity. Another good verse to go along with this is Philippians 4:6-7: "do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."
2) Tithing: Wow, is this an important subject. This is a subject that most of us either avoid or turn our head to. I DONT SEE YOU, I DONT SEE YOU. If I don't see you, I don't have to acknowledge you. Well, we do. God says in 2 Cor. 9: 6-7: "The point is this: whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver." You hear that! God says to give boutifully. And, to be happy about it! But God, what about my new game...I really want Battlefield 3! Well, I need to know what is more important. And to be happy about it.
Money belongs to God in the first place, right? He gave us the ability to work, to live in a country to work freely, to give us a good job to make money, etc. Without God, you wouldn't have the money in your pocket. I want to be more like the beggar in Jesus' story that gave all she had. God, I want to give my all to you. Battlefield 3 can come later.
3) Temptation: We all know there are many things in this world that we need to avoid. The devil walks this Earth and is lurking in every corner. Being around the Internet all day, being a man and living in this world all at the same time is a dangerous field. I need to guard myself from the temptations of this world. Matthew 26:41 states "All of you must keep awake (give strict attention, be cautious and active) and watch and pray, that you may not come into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak."
There are so many things to avoid though. Pornography, Drunkardness, wealth, adultery, language...I could go on. And I am sure as some of you are reading this that you say...done that, done that....God is preparing me for a life in His word and a life preaching the Gospel. If I am walking the fields of this Earth and enjoying it's bounty, I am not in God's will and I am not protecting myself.
This comes back around to my first issure...prayer and guidance. All to often I forget to ask God to help protect me from the wiles of this Earth. If you are feeling temptation, go to GOD! He will help drive it away!
This verse summarizes it pretty well: "And lead (bring) us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen." Matthew 6:13
Thanks for listening.