Thursday, October 3, 2013

A Worthy Manner of Life


"Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ..." Philippians 1:27

In America, it's not frequent to be taught that the way we choose to live our life-our lifestyle-is to line up and be worthy of what we believe as Christians.  We will look like strangers and pilgrims on earth and different than the society we live in. "Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul..." 1 Peter 2:11

It's often an off the cuff, flippant phrase "oh yeah, I'm a Christian. I read my Bible from time to time."

 Being a Christian is so much more than a label or an accessory. 

It's a heart state, a mind state, a soul state. It overtakes us and washes over us until we cannot help but make decisions that reflect our beliefs.

We must start examining our decisions, our way of life, our way of thought. Christ breaks down the walls of our thoughts, and builds new ones. He sheds light on the areas of darkness and idols in our lives and shows us how to make changes.

God wants to be involved in all areas of our lives. Our schooling, our health, our minds, our hobbies, we are to line them up with our faith. Yet often faith is separated from these decisions. Christ is life---so why do we separate Him out of compartments of our lives?

 Often God is only allowed into certain "parts" of our lives. We allow Him into our church life. We allow Him into our hearts---a little. We never stop to examine how He is allowed into our everyday lives. The small and large decisions we make on a daily basis, the beliefs we hold, the WHY of our daily activities. Why are we doing this, why do we believe that, why do we participate in this and that?

This is why in America it is often seen as people being "overly religious" when they allow God to permeate the corners of their lives. But they have done the hard work. They have examined their minds and souls and spent time in prayer asking God what He would have for each and every area of their life and their families life. 

 God is not a cookie cutter God. Each of our lives will look different and this is not about legalism. Each decision He asks us as individuals to make will not be the same as another believer. This is where God shines His beauty. He shows His grace and light in many different areas. It's about truly allowing our faith to make our lives be lived in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ. God will be reflected in our lifestyle and our choices in the ways He chooses. We will not all be the same, but we will be listening to the same God and reflecting the same God. People will see God in us and they will see a light that is different than the world's.

 We will make mistakes, fall short, we strive and seek God and His grace covers us. We won't live a perfect Christ like life. But we are striving to make our manner of life worthy. Worthy of what we reflect. Christ---holy, unblemished, a life lived as a sacrifice for us all, covered by grace.

"And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds,  not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching. " Hebrews 10:24-25

“If you are a son of God, I beseech you to walk worthy of your Father’s house. I charge you solemnly to honour Him in your life; and above all to honour Him by implicit obedience to all His commands, and hearty love to all His children.
Labour to travel through the world like a child of God and heir to glory. Let men be able to trace a family likeness between you and Him that begat you. Live a heavenly life. Seek things that are above.
Do not seem to be building your nest below. Behave like a man who seeks a city out of sight, whose citizenship is in heaven, and who would be content with many hardships till he gets home." J.C. Ryle

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