Lead a Life Worthy of Your Calling: The New Has Come
- Thursday, February 17, 2011
If there is a choice between something old and something new, I would guess many of us would choose new.
I love and appreciate historic and classic things, but there's just something about driving a new car, using new technology, wearing new clothes or moving into a new home. What may be one of the most "under-appreciated" new things in life is the new life in Christ.
Maybe I'm just speaking for myself, having received Jesus over twenty years ago, and maybe I am the only one who has from time to time missed that "new life in Christ smell" (or excitement). But if you have been struggling to fully appreciate your "new" life because you haven't completely left the "old," then refer back to the first article in this series, "Lead a Life Worthy of Your Calling: The Old Has Gone."
In the first part of this series, we found in order to live a life worthy of the calling God has called us (Ephesians 4:1), we must rid ourselves of and forget about those things which have been an obstruction in our lives.
If anyone is in Christ, the old has gone, the new has come! (2 Corinthians 5:17).
As a new creation, our purpose changes, our perspective of life changes and our desires change, or at least they should.
The one thing I ask of the Lord—the thing I seek most—is to live in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, delighting in the Lord's perfections and meditating in his Temple (Psalm 27:4).
If we are a new creation in Christ, our desire is to seek being in the presence of the Lord and delighting in his perfections, not struggling over our imperfections. This is the "new" life God has for us.
We Need to CHOOSE Wisely
"Martha, Martha," the Lord answered, "you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her" (Luke 10:41-42).
In this familiar passage, Jesus goes to visit with Mary and Martha. Martha, being the consummate host, chooses to spend her time doing things for the Lord while Mary chooses to spend time with the Lord. When Martha complains to Jesus about Mary not helping her out, Jesus reprimands Martha for her choice and instructs her that Mary had chosen the better thing to do.
Throughout our lives, most of us know what we should do—right versus wrong, better versus getting-by, now versus later. Sometimes we don't make the best choice because we are more concerned with what others will think, how we may look or because we don't feel like it. At other times, we may be so busy just "doing," we lose focus on doing what is better.
One reason for "failed" New Year's resolutions or any ambition may be because we don't consult with God for what he wants for us. We may "think" we know what is best (for ourselves and others), and we have good intentions for wanting (or doing) "it." But if we don't ask God first, we are doing it alone.
If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him (James 1:5).
The new year (or anytime) should not be about making resolutions (or goals) and trying to attain them (Martha-like), we should resolve to alter what we do and how we think in order to achieve and lead our life worthy of what we were called to do. And one of those things, one of the better things, is spending more time with the Lord (Mary-like), allowing him to set your path straight.
Let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God's will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect (Romans 12:2).
We Need to DO Expediently
One lesson I have learned by reading the Bible is God doesn't encourage us to "try" or "consider doing" something; he tells us to "Go," "Seek," "Make," etc. He commands us to "Do."
Over my many years of list-making and "resolution-breaking," I have discovered something to be more important than compiling a complete list of heartfelt tasks to accomplish, making a detailed plan of how to realize my goals, and convincing myself of the benefits of reaching my aspiration. My revelation can be best summed up in a phrase by an infamous common "working man," Larry the Cable Guy.
Larry the Cable Guy, for those who aren't familiar, is the stage name of a character created by stand-up comedian Daniel Whitney who coined the phrase. It has since become a Southern colloquialism meaning to finish an action or get the job done.
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