As summer draws to a close we are faced with the reality of the routine. And there’s nothing wrong with that. Routines can simplify life somewhat and make us feel more comfortable. But sometimes we allow certain routines to become full-fledged traditions. By that I mean they take on significance far greater than simply being a convenient routine. In fact, some things become almost holy and unchangeable. When those things are tinkered with, people become very upset. It is as if we have willfully flaunted a commandment of the Lord when we tamper with those things.
But what is the ultimate test of tradition? Well, Christianity is first and foremost a matter of the heart. Jesus is after a transformation of the inner man. He cares more about our heart condition than the observance of religious tradition. So we might say that the ultimate test of tradition is “Does it deal with our heart trouble?”
When traditions are established which assist us in knowing God and communing with Him, then they are profitable. If our traditions help us deal with our heart trouble, then they help us know God. And knowing God is what Christianity is all about. But we must always be on guard, lest we find ourselves worshiping traditions instead of God.
Paul said in Philippians 3:13, “Forgetting those things which are behind…” Sometimes we hold onto things long after God has finished using them. God wants to do a new thing today, and we need to be open to it.