Do You Struggle To Live as a Christian?
Devotional Thought of the Day:
11 But you, Timothy, are a man of God; so run from all these evil things. Pursue righteousness and a godly life, along with faith, love, perseverance, and gentleness. 12 Fight the good fight for the true faith. Hold tightly to the eternal life to which God has called you, which you have confessed so well before many witnesses. 1 Timothy 6:11-12 (NLT)
12 I don’t mean to say that I have already achieved these things or that I have already reached perfection. But I press on to possess that perfection for which Christ Jesus first possessed me. 13 No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it, but I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, 14 I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us. Philippians 3:12-14 (NLT)
155 Jesus is never satisfied “sharing.” He wants all.
156 You don’t want to submit yourself to the will of God … and instead you adapt yourself to the will of anybody and everybody.
Also they teach that this faith is bound to bring forth good fruits, and that it is necessary to do good works commanded by God, because of God’s will, but that we should not rely on those works to merit justification before God. (2)
A few days ago, my facebook history brought up a blog I wrote about the crucifix. How some churches and believers avoid it, how we would prefer to have an empty cross, I’ve also been thinking about what it means to take up our cross and follow Jesus.
What would our reaction be if that read, “let yourself be crucified as you follow me”?
That makes the question very real. The question then challenges us greatly. Let myself be crucified? Willingly submit to suffering and being a sacrifice? To what end?
St. Paul tells us we have seen crucified our passions and our lusts (Gal 5:24) if we know Christ. That our sin has been crucified, that we have died with Christ (Romans 6:1-8) That is part of it, and it is no error that concept arrives above in Timothy’s case. It is also the kind of life St Josemaria advocates, in giving ourselves completely to God, to letting Jesus take “all”.
It isn’t optional, it is what really happens in our baptism. It isn’t a requirement of our salvation, as the Augsburg Confession testifies. St Paul agrees with that when he says we strive to possess that which already possesses us.
But we do strive, we do struggle, for it is a struggle. Satan would distract us, the temptation would draw us away, our own pride and brokenness will oppress us. It takes effort to keep our eyes on Christ, to confess our sins, to gather with others in prayer and worship, and to pray on our own. It takes efforts to walk with Christ, to abide with Him.
It may seem less beneficial than working out, or writing some theological or political manifesto,
It isn’t, nothing is more important than communing with God. That is what this is all about.
Walking with God, being His kids, enjoying the peace that comes from that…. that is enough.
(1) Escriva, Josemaria (2010-11-02). The Way (Kindle Locations 494-496). Scepter Publishers. Kindle Edition.Augsberg Confession, The
(2) Augsberg Confession, The
Posted on April 17, 2015, in Augsburg and Trent, Devotions, The Way and tagged Abiding in Christ, Augsburg Confession, faith, joy, morality, sin, St. Josemaria Escriva, stuggle, Will of God. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.