Archive for June, 2010

Staying on Target

June 26, 2010

One aspect of the Christian life is to remain focused and aware at all times.  Paul said:

Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 3:13-14 NKJV)

Notice that Paul’s life had one purpose.  That one purpose was the center of his life and everything else orbited around it.  His one purpose supplied the gravity that kept all the things going in his life in place.  Or, you could compare it to a shooter holding his aim on the target.  Paul knew if his thoughts wavered, his focus would waver.  Then his aim would slide off the mark and his one purpose would be compromised.  Paul knew why he was on this earth and he was determined to be faithful to his purpose.

Of course, we have the words of the Lord:

…for the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost. (Luke 19:10 NKJV)

Jesus “has come to” save lost people, like you and me.  That was His purpose and He never got off mission.  My mission each day must be the same as the mission of Jesus: to save the lost.  I do that, of course, by directing people to Him.  “People” are everyone I interact with every day.  I must concentrate during each encounter with another person on how I conduct myself so as to direct them to Jesus.  My conduct consists of my words and my actions.

I must consciously think before every word that comes out of my mouth: “Will what I am about to say draw someone closer to Jesus, or push them farther away?”  Before every action I must have the same thought: “Will what I am about to do draw someone closer to Jesus, or push them farther away?”  If I am not doing this, I am not taking my purpose seriously enough.  I believe Jesus thought about every word and every deed.  His whole life in His earthly ministry as he interacted with the people who surrounded Him was devoted to saving them from sin by drawing them closer to God.  He did that perfectly.  I must drink in His example.  I must study His word so closely that I know Him so intimately that every molecule of my body and every small recess of my life is saturated with Him.  I think that is what Jesus meant when He said:

Most assuredly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in you. Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For My flesh is food indeed, and My blood is drink indeed. He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in Me, and I in him. As the living Father sent Me, and I live because of the Father, so he who feeds on Me will live because of Me. (John 6:53-57 NKJV)

To keep my God-ordained purpose alive, I must feed constantly on Jesus.  I do that by knowing and meditating on His word, which I then cause to direct my life – every minute, every day.

Our lives are too cluttered and too fast.  We need to simplify and slow down.  We spend way too much time on things that are of no spiritual consequence whatsoever.  Live simply, quietly, faithfully and our light of Christianity will shine to the world.

… But we urge you, brethren… that you also aspire to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business, and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you, that you may walk properly toward those who are outside…. (1 Thessalonians 4:10-12 NKJV)

[we are to pray] for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. (1 Timothy 2:2-4 NKJV)

Do not let your adornment be merely outward–arranging the hair, wearing gold, or putting on fine apparel– rather let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God. (1 Peter 3:3-4 NKJV)

Our life and our culture cry out to hear Jesus’ words to Martha:

But Martha was distracted with much serving, and she approached Him and said, “Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Therefore tell her to help me.” And Jesus answered and said to her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.” (Luke 10:40-42 NKJV)