/ Kyle E. Sims

A Cold Start

A friend of mine's son works as an engineer on sea-going ships. One day when they were in port a sudden storm tore the shipaway from its mooring. This was a serious situation. To power the ship, the older chief engineer had to perform a cold start of the engines. A cold start was not the usual or recommended means of starting the engines. It was a dangerous maneuver that could cause severe damage if not done properly. However, there was no choice. The ship was adrift and needed power immediately. 

At times, we find ourselves adrift spiritually. The storms of life may have caused us to lose the moorings of our regular devotions and faithful attendance at church. We suddenly realizewe have floated away from our regular walk with the Lord. When we find ourselves in this position, we need to seek the Lord immediately. We must make a cold start spiritually to reconnect to the Lord. 

This may seem like an easy thing to do. However, overcoming the inertia of restarting your devotions and attendance at church can be difficult. When you are faithfully walking with the Lord there is momentum to your spiritual life. You have your time set each day. There is a healthy rhythm to your daily readings, prayers, and worship of the Lord.  When that rhythm is broken it can be difficult to resume where you once had been. 

Some advice for a cold start: 

1. Sing to the Lord. When our spiritual lives are cold it can be hard to pray. The words might not come easily. However, by singing hymns and psalms you can praise God and pick up the themes needed to pray. 

2. Pray to the Lord. Pour out your heart to the Lord in adoration, confession, thanksgiving, and supplication. Read and pray through portions of the scriptures. Open your heart and speak to God. Tell him your struggles and ask him to remind you of the joy of your salvation.

3. Pick a book of the Bible (or passage) and start reading regularly. I saw today that we are on the 100th day of 2024. Maybe your Bible reading plan has gone completely off track. Pick back up your plan or just pick a book and start reading. Remember you don’t get a prize for finishing aplan. The real joy is in meeting the Lord in His Word.

4. Get back to church regularly. This means more than just Sunday morning. It is more than just attending worship, get involved with your church.

5. Address the sin in your life. Often the reason for the drift is not an external storm but an internal storm of sin. Repent and turn from your sins. Remember, the Lord is gracious and forgiving. 

6. Seek out Christian fellowship. In the last year, I have had the great joy of being in many of our churches all around the Associate Reformed Presbyterian denomination. However, I realized I missed the refreshment of spiritualfellowship in the same church family. Several weeks ago, my wife and I settled on a church to attend regularly. What a blessing this has been to our life and faith. 

If you are adrift spiritually do not wait. Make a cold start and return to the Lord! Forgo your excuses and rationales for not doing it. If you are adrift spiritually then you are in danger. Do something about it today. 


Kyle E. Sims

Kyle E. Sims

Director of Seminary Admission and Church Relations at Erskine Seminary. Principal Clerk ARP General Synod. Pastor since 1999. 6’ 11” former Basketball player.

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