The cross is an instrument of death, like the guillotine, a firing squad or a lethal injection. At Salvation, our old nature literally dies, and God births His life within us (Colossians 3:3). If we do not take up our cross every day, we are not worthy of Christ (Mathew 10:38). We are slackers and we are showing contempt for the sacrifice Jesus made for us (Luke 14:27).
God challenges us to live as His disciples, mirroring the life of Christ in our thoughts, words and actions. We have no desire left to participate in sinful activities or to entertain unholy thoughts. We cannot even be around people, vote for candidates, or watch TV or movies, which portray ungodliness. Jesus’ holiness is all that is left once His sanctifying work is complete (Galatians 2:20).
There is a paradox here. Christ lives in us (Colossians 3:4). If we surrender our life to Christ, we find it more fulfilling and successful than if we continue to attempt to live by our own direction (Matthew 10:39). God is love, but He is also righteous, just and holy. He has a standard of living, which He requires from all of us. Of course, He does not expect us to reach this standard by our self.
He is the one who actually does the work in us (Philippians 2:12-13). As we take up our cross, He crucifies our old, carnal nature until we walk in His holiness (Luke 9:23). We no longer sit on the throne of our life, but we yield to His Lordship and wisdom, as we follow the leading of His Holy Spirit. We no longer dictate to Him, but we submit to His will for our life (Ephesians 2:10).
The more our soul walks in the holiness of this completed work, the more peace and fulfillment we enjoy. We no longer struggle with sin, because it is no longer a part of our nature. We have no desire to partake in the base, carnal aspects of this world. We draw near to God, resist Satan and He must flee from us. We live and move and have our being in Jesus Christ, our Lord, Savior, Master and King (Acts 17:28).
Father God, we no longer abide in this temporal world, even though we remain in it physically. We focus on the eternal, immortal aspects of life in Christ and find our righteousness, peace and joy in You (John 16:33). We follow Christ as He followed You. We believe in, trust in and cling to Him for every thought, provision and emotion in our life (2 Corinthians 4:16-17). We confidently approach Your throne as we greet each new day, and we walk in Your Spirit as we focus on each moment of our day in You (Galatians 5:15-26).
Thought for the Day:
Every authentic Born Again Believer finds the secret to contentment in total surrender to the will of God for our life. – Philippians 4:12