"And He died for all, so that they who live might no longer live for themselves, but for Him who died and rose again on their behalf."
As most of us realize our greatest struggle as followers of Christ is to no longer live for ourselves, but for Him who died on our behalf. This verse really encouraged my discouraged heart this week as I read: "and He died for all, so that they who live might no longer live for themselves." This clearly says it is possible for all. But how?
Just as I find myself constantly repeating myself to my children, or clients, or Bible Study disciples, the Lord has to constantly repeat the same truths to me. We find Paul having this same experience in Philippians 3:1:
"Finally, my brethren, rejoice in the Lord. To write the same things again is no trouble to me, and it is a safeguard for you."
Our love for God and pleasing Him has got to be greater than pleasing our fleshly desires. If we are going to love God with our all we must give Him our all. Whatever we give the most time to defines what we love the most in life. What or who truly receives most of your time on a daily basis? It is possible for us to honestly answer our Father, because He is omnipresent! He is always with you no matter where you go. In Psalm 139:7-10 David proclaims:
"Where can I go from Your Spirit? Or where can I flee from Your presence? If I ascend to heaven, You are there; If I make my bed in Sheol, behold, You are there. If I take the wings of the dawn, if I dwell in the remotest part of the sea, even there Your hand will lead me, and Your right hand will lay hold of me."
All we need to do is stay aware of His Presence in our lives. We must practice the presence of God! Secondly, we must fill our minds and hearts with His Words more than anyone else’s. We must seek the life He wants to give us above all else to be recipients of what Jesus bought for us with His blood. In Matthew and Luke Jesus told His disciples:
"If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me. For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it."
May we all strive for obedience to His wonderful commands in His Word that will enable us to have life as He intended while on this earth. Living for ourselves leaves us empty without peace and contentment and full of voids. Let us trust in His love for us above all else, and may He take His rightful place in all our lives, "first place in all things." (Colossians 1:18)
In His love.
His creation constantly reveals His goodness on our behalf. Thank Him!
(Photos taken on recent hike and bike ride with clients.)