How would you define your relationship with Christ? Does your heart pant after His? Or would you define yourself as being passive toward Him? Every Christian is in the driver’s seat as to what kind of relationship he or she will have with the Lord.
I realize that some people have greater challenges in their Christian life than others do, through no fault of their own. For instance, how would you like to be a Christian born in a Muslim or Communist country where open expressions of Christianity are frowned upon or even illegal? Obviously, it would be harder to thrive as a Christian in that environment. I am not making light of such a reality. I am saying that at the end of the day, however, it’s up to us as to whether or not we will be passionate for Christ.
Being passionate for Christ requires a certain attitude. Paul the apostle had that kind of mindset. “What things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ,” he said (Philippians 3:7). He was referring to the things he had going for himself in the flesh, which he shared in the preceding verses. He said, for instance, he was born a Hebrew. He was a Pharisee, the most religious sect of the Jews. And according to the legalistic laws, he was blameless. But Paul cared for none of these things during his quest for more of Christ. Similarly, we must be willing to lose some of the things we value, if we want to know Christ more deeply.
I believe one of the main problems in the church today is that many Christians are too in love with this world. They are not willing to make the sacrifices necessary to know Christ on a deeper level. From whence did we get this casual attitude toward Christianity? Certainly we can’t find it in the Bible. The Lord commands us to love Him with all our heart, with all our soul, and with all our mind (Matthew 22:37). We can’t get more passionate than that.
What I am saying here may seem extreme, but it’s not. The Bible says we should “present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable sacrifice” (Romans 12:1). This is an interesting verse. First, it tells us that we should be a living sacrifice. We do this by dying to ourselves while living to Christ. Also, note that this verse says this kind of passionate lifestyle is our reasonable service. The word “reasonable” denotes that which belongs to the sphere of reason. In other words, this request is not extreme. Rather, it is consistent with sober spiritual thinking.
Our relationship with Christ can never be, will never be any more than what we are willing to invest into it. So how much are you willing to give up to properly invest into your relationship with Christ? What is it that you regard as being bigger than life in this world that you are willing to count as dung just to know Christ more deeply? These questions are important because our answers to them are a measure of our passion for Christ–or the lack thereof.
Copyright © 2016 by Frank King. All rights reserved.