I sometimes wonder what God desires for my life. I know I fall way short of what His bucket list may be for me, but His grace is so powerful and complete. Because of Jesus God sees me without sin and that is awesome. i need that and of course, God knew that and satisfied that need in my life. But in my attempt to glorify God there needs to be a desire by me to grow closer to Him. The Apostles found out that following Jesus prepared them to live the kind of life that makes a difference. Peter wrote about this life and what it took to live it in 1 Peter 1:13-16 13 So prepare your minds for action and exercise self-control. Put all your hope in the gracious salvation that will come to you when Jesus Christ is revealed to the world.14 So you must live as God’s obedient children. Don’t slip back into your old ways of living to satisfy your own desires. You didn’t know any better then.15 But now you must be holy in everything you do, just as God who chose you is holy.16 For the Scriptures say, “You must be holy because I am holy.” You must be thinking "Holy in Everything I Do?" I sure did the first time I read these words. But remember, Peter also says to prepare our minds and exercise self-control. Here is where our part kicks in and it is very important to realize what we must do to live a life that draws us closer to what God's plan is for us.
A holy life is possible. Let me say that again. A holy life is possible. If you have ever had the blessing of meeting a person who has a deep walk with God, you can see it is possible. I mean, a person who isn't trying to do anything to impress God, but just draws deeper and deeper in relationship with God to the point their mind is filled with thoughts about what God wants and only wants to follow God. If there is a failing in our modern-day church, it is that we have failed in pursuing a close "relationship" with God and given in to living a "religious" life. We are living in the result of that failing and I don't believe that is on God's bucket list for any of us. Religion is powerless at best, but it makes us feel secure. Relationship is open and scary at times, but we get to the heart of matters much quicker. God gave so much for relationship with His children and if giving the life of your perfect Son is not enough, then your perspective is skewed at best.
As the above scripture says, an action of pursuing a closer relationship with God is to have a prepared mind for action. The mind that is set on God is a mind that is infiltrated with God's Word. It is a mind that has seen changes in priorities that results in thinking like Jesus in everything we do. The Apostle Paul made decision after decision led by the Spirit of God and that leading resulted in a holy life. He is no different than us and it is God's desire that we draw close to him because He has drawn close to us. James writes in James 4:7 So humble yourselves before God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.8 Come close to God, and God will come close to you. Part of drawing close to God is a change in our minds that results from a change in our hearts, which is our core. Be sure and guard your heart and trust the Holy Spirit to guide you in your daily steps. There is a daily filling of the Holy Spirit in our lives. I begin each day in God's Word and ask God to fill me with the Holy Spirit and from that simple prayer God generates a freshness in my life to live the life I need to live.
The writer of Proverbs wrote in Proverbs 4:23 Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life. Wow!!! Let me say that backwards.Wow!! Boy, that is a shot in the arm for those who are seeking a relationship that is deeper with God.
So, we not only accept Jesus into our hearts, but we live out of that heart relationship with God that draws us closer to Him. THERE is where we find our power for living!!! Power that changes how we think and how we live. Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 1:14 But people who aren’t spiritual can’t receive these truths from God’s Spirit. It all sounds foolish to them and they can’t understand it, for only those who are spiritual can understand what the Spirit means. I don't know about you, but I am for more of the Holy Spirit being seen in my life. God is responsive to His people through the Holy Spirit and there is power for living in that very truth. Time to get into God's Word and then live it out!!!
The Pilgrimage continues......