Living for God
A church building caught fire one night. At the fire, the pastor said to the fire chief, “This is the first time I’ve seen you in church.” The chief replied, “This is the first time I’ve seen your church on fire.”
Those on fire for God imitate Jesus. Being like Jesus is our destiny. God implants within us the desire to be more kind, compassionate, and loving towards others. To be such, we must daily die to getting our way in everything.
Being like Jesus includes imitating His willingness to suffer, if necessary, to do God’s will. It’s relatively easy to behave like a Christian with other Christians around us. It’s far more challenging when refusing to lie or cheat for an employer might mean losing our job.
Champion marathon athletes keep running even though they hurt. Jesus kept obeying despite the pain and the prospect of more pain. He didn’t give up or cave in when doing so could have prevented His crucifixion. He went to the cross because He chose obedience to His Father over personal comfort and safety.
Have you wondered whether you’d deny Christ if your survival depended on it? Staying true to God in a crisis could be your last step in a long walk of obedient living. We must prepare our minds before the crisis comes. If obeying God is a knee-jerk habit, the crisis won’t unnerve us.
Until God calls us home, we’re to do His will, not fulfill our evil desires as we once did. We’ve already done too much of that. Sin no longer dominates us if we’re willing to suffer for seeking first God’s kingdom and righteousness.
Those on fire for God have done an about-face. Like childish behavior, we must leave sinful behavior behind us. It won’t be easy. We face ongoing pressure to adopt a degrading way of life. Unbelieving friends will tug, pull, coax, cajole, tempt, and entice us to join them.
The world continually pressures us to conform to its corrupt standards. For example, the media treats excessive alcohol consumption as more normal than eating, judging by the time given to each.
I attended a social gathering of fellow workers in the 1970s. Everyone was drinking to excess except me and one other person. They made fun of us. One of my bosses asked whether I was going to become a nun or something. Funny thing. As everyone kept drinking, I seemed to get better and better at table tennis as the night went on!
Living for God is a daily decision. Every “Yes” to God and “No” to self today make tomorrow’s “Yes” and “No” slightly easier. The bricks of daily obedience pave the road to abundant life.
I invite you to check out my book, His Power for Your Weakness, a devotional discipleship resource and to share it with others: https://read.amazon.com/kp/embed?asin=B09NZG9W7L&preview=newtab&linkCode=kpe&ref_=cm_sw_r_kb_dp_FSRD4SGCXC35KMZ6ED5R
See free spiritual growth resources for Christians at https://www.christiangrowthresources.com
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