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  • July 11, 2014 - Reflections

    By Jean S. Horner
    The other day while walking down a corridor in a public building, I saw what appeared to be someone walking toward me. On coming closer, I found it was my own reflection in a huge mirror. For a moment it frightened me. Somehow a full-length reflection of one’s self is a startling thing. ...


Daily Boost

October 1, 2012 - Pirate or Marine?

By Alex Bryant

Are you a Christian pirate or a Christian marine?

Anyone who has ever gone on a missions trip with me realizes I operate the trip with the understanding that everyone is either a pirate or marine. If you are a pirate, I treat you like one and you live by the code of the pirates: “He who falls behind gets left behind.” Then there are Marines. People who have shown they are valuable to the team and have proven themselves to be servants of the team and therefore have earned the right to be treated like a Marine. The Marine code is: “Leave no man behind.”

The code of the pirates and code of the Marines have brought about a lot of fun on our missions trips. Trying to earn the Marine distinction has compelled people to do a lot of hard work as well. And yes, there has even been a little controversy when people felt their efforts were not recognized enough to promote them. But, it is what it is …

At any rate, all of this has led me to ask the question: Are you a pirate or Marine?

Many Christians think they are Marines, but in fact they act like pirates. They have been freed from the bondage of sin, and that’s all that matters. They have the attitude that, “I’m free, so other people can take care of their own selves.” We have to understand that our freedom from sin is not a result of something we did to attain it, but something Christ did for us. Don’t disregard the grace of God and the kindness He showed to lead to your freedom. Don’t go about celebrating in such a way that you forsake your responsibility to the others still in bondage. Once you are free, remember you have a mission — the Great Commission.

When Christ sets us free, we should make it our life goal to see as many other people as we can — as a matter of fact, everyone we know — attain the same freedom!

What if you were out hiking with a few friends and all of you fell into a hole in the ground. You’re all screaming and calling out for help, then along comes a stranger and pulls just you out of the hole. Once you were freed from the hole and back on the path, would you run off celebrating, leaving your friends trapped back in the hole? Of course not! You would be happy that you were freed, but you would stick around and help your friends out, not resting until each of them was back on the path, free from the pit of despair.

The same is true with God. You have to understand that God wants you involved with His goal of reconciling others to Him!

“So we are Christ’s ambassadors; God is making his appeal through us. We speak for Christ when we plead, ‘Come back to God!’” (2 Corinthians 5:20, NLT).

All followers of Christ who have been set free are called to represent Him. We are free to act like Him and carry His message of reconciliation to the lost. Christ is making His appeal to others through us. His mandate is to leave no man behind!

Are you living by that standard? Or are you too preoccupied with enjoying your freedom to think of others? Are you a Christian pirate who realizes others are still in bondage but you’re too busy with your own life and living by the decree, “He who falls behind gets left behind”?

God help us!

— Alex Bryant serves as college and young adults pastor at First Assembly of God in Fort Myers, Fla.



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