Christ the Center



By Beth Luebe

“I have a big problem with the Wheel Illustration!” These were the words Jim and I were shocked to hear Jerry Bridges share with us one day. What? We must have given him quite a look! Jerry went on to explain, “My problem with the Wheel Illustration is that it can never accurately be drawn to scale. You can never make the ‘hub’ big enough!” We breathed a sigh of relief, chuckled and agreed with him readily. Jerry’s encouragement to us and to other Navigators was that the “hub” of Christ become larger in our lives.

Historically, The Navigators have given the Body of Christ helpful tools like the Wheel, the Hand, and the Bridge. One of my favorites has been the Wheel Illustration because it helps people to understand various aspects of a balanced Christian life. I like to have conversations with women concerning which areas of the “Wheel” are their strengths and weaknesses. This has helped to shape how I disciple and train them. 

As I have reflected upon Jerry’s statement, I have seen the importance of living with a large hub. When the hub of Christ in my life is small, it inevitably leads to anxiety, fear, need for control, stress, and difficulty in trusting God. All of life’s struggles appear larger than needed and it is easy to fall into this trap. When I live with a big hub of Christ the center in my life, there is a confidence that God is sovereign, in control and that He is good. I live with peace, assurance, and hope, even in hard circumstances.

When your wheel has a large hub, it impacts every aspect of your life. It manifests itself in some of the following ways:
  1. Desiring more of God’s Word
  2. Longing for intimacy with God through prayer
  3. Seeking to be a witness for Christ
  4. Fellowshipping with other believers who spur you on and encourage your heart
One way I ensure that Christ expands as the center of my life is to be in the Word of God. I love meditating on verses that emphasize the greatness, majesty and glory of God. (Favorites are: 1 Chronicles 29:11, Psalm 56:3-4, Psalm 73:25-26, Romans 11:33-36, Galatians 2:20). 

During times when raising kids grew overwhelming and exhausting, memorizing verses as a family proved inspiring. It helped me to grow and to increase my view of God and at the same time to expand the hub of Christ in my life! 

When our sons were in elementary school we memorized verses as a family. A great resource is: fighterverses.com - from Desiring God Ministries. We often made up actions and rhythms to go along with them (picture three very active boys, less than four years apart). As we learned the verses, meditated on them, prayed them and acted them out, they began to greatly influence our lives. It sometimes took a few weeks to get one verse cemented into our minds. When quoting them now two decades later, you might catch any of us doing hand gestures or speaking in a certain rhythm still! 

May I encourage you to meditate on and memorize some verses that focus on Christ being the center of your life? Even if it’s only one a month this will likely be a great encouragement for you and your family. And it will help you grow your “hub” even bigger as Jerry encouraged us years ago. Blessings as you develop the next generation of leaders and laborers in the Kingdom of God.

“I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” Galatians 2:20

Beth and Jim have been married 32 years and they consider it a privilege to partner together in life, family and ministry. Being empty-nesters and having three son's (and a daughter-in-law) in their 20's, they have been able to work more closely together than before. Jim and Beth live in New York City and are experiencing a new adventure of faith and trusting God in the City. Their first grandchild was born September 8th, Jaxson James! To contact Beth please email: beth.luebe@navigators.org.

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