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Thursday, February 18, 2016

Never Stop Growing; Press On Toward The Goal

In review of Philippians 3:12-13 it says, “I don’t mean to say I’m perfect. I haven’t learned all I should even yet, but I keep working toward that day when I will finally be all that Christ saved me for and wants me to be. No, dear brothers, I’m still not all I should be,  but I am bringing all my energies to bear on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead,”

Bottom Line:
No, I’m not saying I have it all together or have achieved it. Rather, I keep pressing on toward the day when I will finally be all Christ has in mind for me. I focus on this one thing; I forget what was in the past and look forward to what lies ahead of me.

What this means to me:
I’m not saying I’ve got it all together or have arrived at my goal. But I press on and keep working toward that day when I will finally be all that Christ saved me for and wanted me to be. No, I have not achieved it, but I focus on this one thing: forgetting what’s in the past and looking forward to what lies ahead.

Following Jesus was a decision on my part and what I’m learning is that it’s a process that will go on for the rest of my life. I won’t be able to follow without walking. So I need to have movement!

Philippians 3:12-13 says, “I don’t mean to say I’m perfect. I haven’t learned all I should even yet, but I keep working toward that day when I will finally be all that Christ saved me for and wants me to be. No, dear brothers, I’m still not all I should be,  but I am bringing all my energies to bear on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead,” (LB)

What’s amazing is that when Paul wrote that verse, he was an older man in prison in Rome and toward the end of life. He was an incredibly mature person. Yet he said he hadn’t arrived. If anybody had the right to say, “I’ve arrived spiritually,” it would be the guy who wrote most of the New Testament. But Paul says, no, I haven’t arrived. I’m still growing. I’m still learning. I’m still becoming more like Christ.

This morning I consider a trap that could keep me from following Paul’s example and continuing to grow in Christ? This thing is “Pride.”

Pride will keep me from growing, because when I pretend that I’ve got it all together, I won’t make an effort to become more spiritually mature. In reality, no one has it all together! Humility on my part will lead to happiness, it allows me to be more teachable.

A happy person will never stop growing, discovering, stretching, and learning. I was made to grow.

Happiness and humility go together because humble people are teachable. They are always asking, “How can I be a better husband? How can I be a better friend? How can I be a better boss? How can I be a better follower of Jesus?”

A great piece of advice comes from the 2 Corinthians 13:5 from the Message version, “Test yourselves to make sure you are solid in the faith. Don’t drift along taking everything for granted. Give yourselves regular checkups. You need firsthand evidence, not mere hearsay, that Jesus Christ is in you. Test it out. If you fail the test, do something about it” (MSG).

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