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Friday, August 31, 2018

Surrendering What Jesus Uncovers

In review of Philippians 1:6 it says, “And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns” (NLT).

Today’s verse reminds me that the God who began a good work in me, will continue it throughout my lifetime and will finish it when I meet him face to face. God's work for me began when Christ died on the cross in my place. His work in me began when I first believed. Now the Holy Spirit lives in me, enabling me to be more like Christ every day. What Paul is describing is the process of Christian growth and maturity that began when I accepted Jesus and will continue until Christ returns.

I’m reminded that when God starts a project, he completes it! God will help me grow in grace until he has completed his work in my life. So when I get discouraged, I just need to recall that God won't give up on me. He promises to finish the work he has begun. When I feel incomplete, unfinished, or distressed by my shortcomings, remember God's promise and provision. I shouldn’t let my present condition rob me of the joy of knowing Christ or keep me from growing closer to him.

It takes years for all of us to grow to adulthood, and it takes a full season for fruit to mature and ripen. The same is true for the fruit of the Spirit. The development of Christlike character in me cannot be rushed. Spiritual growth, like physical growth, takes time.

Before Christ enters our lives at conversion, he often must allow us to experience problems so that he can get our attention and show us that we’re living a life built on a faulty foundation. In truth, that faulty foundation is what causes many of the problems in our lives.

Jesus demands that I surrender all of my life to him. He doesn’t want a small portion of who I am. It’s like this, when I’m trying to climb out of a river that has a steep bank, I have to get a foothold on something to start the climb. And once I get the foothold, I can climb up the bank and walk all around.

The question for me is am I only simply giving him a foothold, but resisting his efforts to step fully up onto the bank so he can fully access my life. Jesus isn’t willing to stand there on that foothold. He wants me to give him all of my life.

I may think I’ve surrendered all to him, but the truth is, I’m still hanging on to some parts of my life. The good news is that Jesus isn’t upset with me. He simply wants to work with me to help me uncover areas that I still need to surrender to him. To move forward I need to surrender what Jesus uncovers.

There will be struggles and battles, but the outcome will never be in question. God has promised that “he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus” (Philippians 1:6 NIV).

Bottom LIne:
With confidence we can know that God, who began a good work in us, will carry his work on to completion, the day of Christ's return

What this means to me:
I can be certain that God, who is the one who began his good work within me, will keep on working in me to complete his work until it is complete, the day Christ returns.

In summary, I'm a work in progress. God who began a good work in me will be faithful to complete it, He won't give up on me. Jesus demands that I give Him more than a foothold. I need to surrender all of my life to him. He simply wants to work with me to help me uncover areas that I still need to surrender to him.

Today’s study reminds me that I need to keep Christ as the center of all areas or slices of my life (Marriage, Father, Grand father, Leader, Work, Leisure, Mentoring, Ministry.) Much of my life recently has been concentrated on my work. I need to make sure that I’m not compartmentalizing myself. I need to define what the “Win” is in my life and invest my time, energy and resources in the right things. The “Win” for me is to live with integrity and to make a difference in the lives of others. Am I doing this in all areas, keeping Christ as the center? Are there deep secret parts of my life that I need to surrender still?  

Today Father I pray that you help me clearly surface any areas of my life that I haven’t given over to Jesus and his leadership. I also pray for your continued wisdom and guidance in handling the work related items I have in front of me, in leading others and in responding to those around me.