Are We There Yet? (1 of 2)
December 26, 2004
INTRODUCTION: This is a question that is normally asked several times on our family's journey. How much further do we have? These questions remind each of us that life is a journey. To the Christian, it is a process of growth in which we seek to "lay hold" of the fullness of that which has been given us, "that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me" (us).
Paul expresses his desire to achieve what God had in store for him One paraphrase of Phil 3:12 says, "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... I am still not all I should be but I am bringing all my energies to bear on this one thing."
We are quickly moving toward the time of America's evaluation (New Years). Few of us ever evaluate our spiritual lives, though we do take inventory of each other. Note Paul's personal spiritual evaluation.
"Not that I have already attained"
"or am already perfected" (mature)
"I do not count myself to have apprehended"
Make no mistake about it, Paul had a holy, passionate desire to "press on," "to lay hold," "to forget," "to reach," and to "press toward"
How long has it been since you sat down in a private place with an open Bible and an open heart and asked the Lord how you are doing spiritually?
I am really challenged by Paul's personal spiritual evaluation. Paul did not regard himself as having laid hold of everything God had for him. He had been the moving force of Christianity in his day. If anyone could pride himself on what he had done, it would be the Apostle Paul, yet he still sensed a need for growth. This passage is all about growth into Christlikeness.
In his book, The Journey from Success to Significance" John Maxwell talks about "Setting the Course for Significant Growth." He says, "The mere desire to grow and reach your po ...
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