Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Striving and Settling-What do I do?

So, Paul says I have learned to be content in all situations. Whether he had much or little he had learned to be content. In fact, this is where the classically quoted verse comes from I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. In other words, whatever situation I am in I can be basically satisfied because I know Christ is at the helm of my life (Phil 4.)

This same man wrote I press toward the mark (Phil 3:14)and I have strived to preach the gospel (Romans 15:20.) He said some strive for a crown that is perishable-not so with us-we strive for a crown that is not perishable (paraphrased.)

He wrote to Timothy a man of God must not strive but must be gentle.

Isaiah said of Jesus-He shall not strive and Jesus told his people time and again in his early ministry not to tell everyone about Him.

Crazy, huh?

Well, I suppose it is one of the most difficult things to determine in life: When to fight and when to run. When to strive and when to stand. The friction exists for one primary reason.

We can not win the fight for our souls or for the souls of anyone else-It wouldn't have been possible anyway-but Jesus has already won the fight. Satan just refuses to accept it.

There is a fight for souls and to be on Jesus' side means to spread the good news as He commanded AND AND to leave the outcome in His hands.

There is a race to be run which you must run, you simply must give it all you've got-the race to run for God, the race of Godly living and sinless (as much as possible) existence. You and I must strive to enter in at the narrow gate. Faith is a channel of trust and assurance between us and God and we must let that channel exist and grow and affect our daily lives. We must be the best that we can be under every circumstance through His strength all things are possible.

At the same time, as with above, the outcome is in His hands. We strive to be the best we possibly can and then settle for God's will. It's n ot like settling will be a bad thing. He wants what's best for you. Indeed His word also says that if you love Him and are called according to His purpose all things will work together for you good (Romans 8:28.) If God allows hardship there is a reason for it.

It's interesting when you think about it. Striving and settling are like walking when done in conjunction with one another. If you are walking and you don't strive-reach out for the next step-youw ill fall down. If you are walking and you don't settle-firmly plant your foot after each step-you will fall down. If you settle too much-stopping walking altogether-you won't get anywhere. If you strive too much-trying to step, step without any stops at all-you will wipe out for sure.

God loves you and He wants good things for your life but He also has in mind great things for the kingdom, you in the kingdom, and heaven one day. So, learn to be content and to strive for more in balance and God will take you places you have not yet seen.

Pastor Dan