Saturday, October 26, 2019

Quick Fix

As I sit this morning, with broken water pipes, company, children, harvest--life--I can't help but ask God to fix things. There are dishes, hands, and clothes to be washed. People to feed and care for. God says, "No" or "Wait" (which means "no" for now).

And I am reminded that life here will always be broken and limping. God comes to my aid. I am thankful. And something else goes wrong. And I pray. And He answers.

But what I need, more than a repaired water main, more than settled laundry, dishes, and children, is a settled heart; a heart that is content with or without pleasing circumstances; with or without fixes and affirmative answers to prayer. This morning what I need, all I need, is Jesus.

I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ, and may be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own derived from the Law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which comes from God on the basis of faith, that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death; in order that I may attain to the resurrection from the dead. 

Not that I have already obtained it or have already become perfect, but I press on so that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus. Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. 
(Philippians 3:8-13)

As I read this passage today, it turned inside out. Why did Jesus lay hold of me? What is the prize of the upward call of God on my life?

The upward call is that I, by faith, would be conformed to His death, living not in my own strength but in the power of His resurrection through the fellowship of His sufferings. Jesus laid hold of me that I would glorify and live for Him instead of myself. God's will is to use the life of Christ in my body, at this time of history, in this geographical place, with these people so that, as believers live out the life and purpose of Christ, He manifests Himself across the world.

It's not about fixing things, enjoying life, or making it easier. It's about living daily His death, suffering, and resurrection in trust and faith. I can rejoice when things go well and I see the hand of God in each and every blessing. I can also rest in difficulty, praying continually, trusting that God is working something even greater in the difficulties.Paul continues to write:

Brethren, join in following my example, and observe those who walk according to the pattern you have in us. For many walk, of whom I often told you, and now tell you even weeping, that they are enemies of the cross of Christ, whose end is destruction, whose god is their appetite, and whose glory is in their shame, who set their minds on earthly things. For our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ; who will transform the body of our humble state into conformity with the body of His glory, by the exertion of the power that He has even to subject all things to Himself. (Philippians 3:17-21)

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