Complying with Complacency

  • Pete Johnson
man sleeping with a book on his face

Most of us would say, that as Christians, we tend to seek after God in a desperate way when we are facing life struggles or persecution. We may even say, “Looking back on that time in my life is when I really grew in Christ.” It is a fact that we do grow in those times.

On the opposite side of life struggles and persecution, when we have “peace’ in our lives; when things are going well for us, we often find ourselves in the hardest spiritual struggle of all, being spiritually complacent.

Complacency is marked by self-satisfaction; especially when accompanied by the unawareness of actual dangers or deficiencies. In other words, I become complacent when I’m ok with how and where I am spiritually. When that happens, because there is “no need for God” in the present, I fill my life with other things and don’t seek and crave the Lord, thus I don’t grow in times of “peace” in my life, I easily digress into sinful habits.

So, must we always face life struggles and persecution for our growth to be substantial?

Luke records in Acts 9:31, a time where the early church was not persecuted, there was peace; but instead of being complacent, they continued to grow in their faith as individuals and the church grew as a whole.

“So the church throughout all Judea and Galilee and Samaria had peace and was being built up. And walking in the fear of the Lord and in the comfort of the Holy Spirit, it multiplied.” (Acts 9:31)

This passage gives us two ways to walk during the “peace” of our lives to ensure that we grow and that we don’t become complacent.

1) They walked in the fear of the Lord

In reverence and awe of what He had done for them and the understanding of His character. We can only understand the character of God by getting to know Him through His word.

Therefore let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire. (Hebrews 12:28-29, ESV)

2) They walked in the comfort of the Holy Spirit

They were led by the Holy Spirit, their decisions in life were based on His leading and they were able to discern between their desires and the Spirit’s leading. What a great comfort to know that your life is being guided by the Spirit of God!

“But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh.” (Galatians 5:16)

To walk in the fear of the Lord and in the comfort of the Holy Spirit means that you are not waiting for the difficult times to seek God, but in the good times, the times of peace as well.

Have you become compliant with complacency? Are you OK with where you are spiritually? Are you too busy enjoying the peace in your life that you are not growing in Christ?