You’re doing great, keep going. Now where did Jesus say that?
We give each other encouragement and advice, but it is often not rooted in the Bible. Of course there is nothing harmful about telling something they are doing great, and encouraging them to keep going, but the Bible puts things into different terms.
I think it’s vital to our relationship with God to understand life as He does. If we want to get through the struggles of life we need more than vague expressions and empty promises. We need more than the encouraging words of friends. We need the hope and words of a living and eternal God. Its the ONLY thing that will truly help.
You’re Doing Great
If you ave saved you are doing great. You have the power to overcome sin, glorify God and have eternity in heaven to look forward to. There is no doubt that at the core of who you are in Christ, you are doing great, but. But in reality we often struggle, and don’t do so great.
God promises us some things in the Bible that shed some light onto God’s perspective of how we are doing:
- Galatians 5:17 “For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other to keep you from doing the things you want to do.”
- Hebrews 12:1 “Let us lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us.”
- John 15:2 “Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit.”
There is a battle that wages in us. A battle between the flesh and the Spirit. Even on our best day, the battle wages. It will wage until we are in eternity. This means that we are never 100% doing great. I am not telling you this so that you will despair, but so that you will examine your self.
God gave us a conscience. Guilt was meant to drive us to examine ourselves, and get right with God. If we are in need of encouragement, we may want to first consider what guilt might be telling us, or just examine ourselves to learn what work God may be wanting to do.
“Sin will not only be striving, acting, rebelling, troubling, disquieting; but let alone, if not continually mortified, it will bring forth great, cursed, scandalous, soul-destroying sins.” (Owen, pg. 30)
You see we aren’t really doing great. When we were saved we started on a journey of change. Christ justified us, and then began our life of becoming more like Him. The only way to become more like Christ is to put off sin, and put on godly living/obedience. It’s a gradual process that will end in eternity when we are made perfect.
I wish you were here on my front porch with me. I am listening to the birds, crickets, feel the breeze, and gaze at the expanse of sky. I would like to tell you how God has used many trials in my life to reveal sin in my life. How he has done an amazing work and helped me grow and change.
Even in the past few months the change has been slow, and excruciating, but everyday I can taste and savor God more. He reveals sin in my life: lack of trust, anxiety, worry, desire to control. I am so very grateful God is doing this.
You see all the articles and blog posts tell me I am great, I can do anything, overcome obstacles, dream dreams and conquer challenges. God tells me something else. He believes I can do something great, but only with Him. He is more concerned about the sin in my life that needs mortified, then giving me some pep talk that will only momentarily help me.
We may not be doing great. Perhaps guilt is driving us to a point where we need to deal with an unconfessed sin. Perhaps there are sins that God is trying to bring to our attention, because He wants us to grow and become more like Him. This is a process that will continue throughout our life. What is God revealing to you?
I mean to bring you hope! When we seek to live God’s way, we can do amazing things. The fact that we are saved means we are doing great, but there are times when need to examine ourselves, and determine what ways we are in sin. What ways we aren’t doing so great. When we put off sin, and put on godly living, we will be equipped with what we need to achieve great things, and impact lives for Jesus Christ.
Next post…..let’s look at keep going. God has a lot to say about “keep going”
In Him, and in His Word, we will have the strength and hope to live this life. Everything else will fade, disappoint, and only provide momentary relief. But with God, we can find eternal power, majesty, strength, and the tools to overcome the world.
Now let’s get out there and do this thing! His glory is at stake, and He expects us to take action.
For His glory, and Because of His grace,