What does God the Father want from each of us believers today? Life long growth in abiding fruitfully in Jesus.
· When your body stops growing—your abiding fruitfully should not.
· When your financial worth stops growing-- your abiding fruitfully should not.
· When your power and influence on earth stop growing-- your abiding fruitfully should not.
· When your accomplishments in your field stop growing-- your abiding fruitfully should not.
See what I mean? There is a part of you that will never die and should always grow. That concept should be on your mind every day you live on this planet. Life long growing in fruitfulness, abiding in Jesus Christ!
Probably every one of us have heard the famous words of Charles Thomas Studd (1860-1931),
"Only one life, ‘twill soon be past;
only what's done for Christ will last."
However, few of us realize when it was that he said those words. It was on his deathbed with his precious family gathered around him. He had already told each of his children that he wished he had something to give to them, but he had nothing left. Then he said, "I gave it all to the Lord, a long time ago."
This spiritual giant actually gave his children more than anyone could imagine. His children had seen their father grow year by year in the Lord. They saw his personal devotion to the Word of God. They watched him refined by constant health problems, reoccurring weakness and bouts with intense pain. They had watched his tireless devotion to the Lord that carried their frail dad to the remotest and most dangerous spots on earth—all to share the glorious Gospel of Christ. In the end, every one of his children served the Lord to their last days. They saw and followed the example of his great dedication to God.
Growing in Christ is accomplished by abiding in Him. Allowing Him to chasten (spank us as needed) and prune us (guide our lives away) from anything that we will have to leave behind because it was not worth Christ's dying for. What are you living for today that is worthy of the price paid for your life? Are you living for what Christ died for?
2 Corinthians 5:9-15 "Therefore we make it our aim, whether present or absent, to be well pleasing to Him. 10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad. 11 Knowing, therefore, the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are well known to God, and I also trust are well known in your consciences. 12 For we do not commend ourselves again to you, but give you opportunity to boast on our behalf, that you may have an answer for those who boast in appearance and not in heart. 13 For if we are beside ourselves, it is for God; or if we are of sound mind, it is for you. 14 For the love of Christ compels us, because we judge thus: that if One died for all, then all died; 15 and He died for all, that those who live should live no longer for themselves, but for Him who died for them and rose again."
Have you ever heard anyone say, "Well you can't take it with you!" That is true. God no less says the same thing. But so many have tried. Most notably we think of the god-kings of Egypt. Those Pharaohs built giant banks (known as pyramids) to house their fabulous wealth so they could "take it with them". Now empty and looted they stand as silent witnesses to the folly of trying to hold onto this earth.
Perhaps the contrast between the last hours of life in two vastly different men will help us see how great are God's rewards!
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