Dying For Christ
I was recently invited to join a page on Facebook about persecution of Christians in various parts of the world, which got me thinking about this issue.
Sadly in many countries in the world today Christians are still being persecuted and/or killed for their faith. This made me think that being called to die for, or to be persecuted for Christ is only one aspect of our need to be willing to sacrifice ALL for Him.
While it is a huge thing to be persecuted for Christ, or to be willing to die for Christ, I believe it is even more important that we learn to DIE TO SELF, for Christ, "EVERY DAY". That we develop a pure heart by living in His Word and communicating with Him every day and have our eyes firmly fixed on the ultimate prize, which is Christ Himself. This is what is most important because if we don't live for Him every day, if we live our lives casually and if we do not have a relationship with Him that is stronger than our desire to live; how will we ever stand if the unthinkable happens and we are called to make the ultimate sacrifice to lay down our lives for Christ?
We need to live our lives so close to Christ and have such a deep rooted relationship with Him, that denying Him to save our mortal lives would be something unthinkable for us. To die for Christ is a very big thing; but to live for Christ "EVERY DAY" and not live our lives carelessly is even greater, because this represents a life-long sacrifice.
But Oh what reward awaits those who choose this path, when we get to stand face to face before Christ Himself and hear those most welcome words; "Well done good and faithful servant", "Enter in to the joy of thy Lord". And when we enter into Heaven, (a place that is beyond our wildest dreams and imagination); there we will get to meet Noah, Abraham, Isaac & Jacob, Moses, Elijah, King David, the Apostles, and all of the other great men and women of God.
This is the promise of God we can look forward to: 1 Cor 2:9: But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.
To live every day for Christ should be our highest goal, and it is my personal goal. To be willing to be used by Him as He directs... to obey His call on our lives and give our all to Him. This is the greatest challenge of all, and living such a life will hold is in good stead should we ever be called to make the ultimate sacrifice for Him. Thankfully the great majority of us will never face this ultimate test of our faith, but we can be absolutely certain of this; that we will be tested by the enemy every day of our lives. We will be tested in the small things, and sometimes tested in the big things, but the journey that leads to integrity or compromise both generally start with small temptations, decisions and actions. Decisions and actions to live for God, or decisions and actions that compromise our integrity.
So for me the real question is not weather we are prepared to die for Christ, but whether we are prepared to truly live for Him and go the distance for a lifetime.
Be blessed, Steve.