Joel and I were reflecting on the past year a few weeks ago and the word wasted came to both of our minds. Yuck. I don’t want to look back and think of a year as wasted…and really, it is hard to even face up to that word. God was teaching me lots of things but looking back it was more of a year of survival than transformation. Maybe I wasn’t listening. Or maybe I just wanted to do my own thing. All I know is I don’t want to live life “just surviving”…I don’t want to be the same. I want God’s transforming power to change my life. Yesterday this little video was shown before the sermon.
I have a longing to be transformed…to grow in my spiritual life this year. It might be a slow growth and it is definitely not a growing that can occur in my own strength. Our pastor talked about how making progress in our spiritual lives means we need to learn to hang on to the supreme value of knowing Jesus. He said we thrive when we are in sync with HIS heart. And sometimes being in sync with God’s heart means a reordering of my world. He told us to be honest and fill in the blank: For me to live is ______. It is Jesus alone who is worth living for.
I’m praying about what reordering needs to be done in my heart and in my life this year. I don’t want to get to the end of this year and feel like it was wasted. I mean, it’s almost the end of January already! It is so easy to get caught up in the busyness and distractions of this world and fail to listen to God’s voice. He wants to transform me. He wants to transform you. I don’t know what that transformation is going to look like in my life this year. It may be hard. It may be slow. But He promises that it will be beautiful.
This year may we see God in the big picture and the details.
This year may we be transformed.
I gave up all that inferior stuff so I could know Christ personally, experience his resurrection power, be a partner in his suffering, and go all the way with him to death itself. If there was any way to get in on the resurrection from the dead, I wanted to do it.
I’m not saying that I have this all together, that I have it made. But I am well on my way, reaching out for Christ, who has so wondrously reached out for me. Friends, don’t get me wrong: By no means do I count myself an expert in all of this, but I’ve got my eye on the goal, where God is beckoning us onward—to Jesus. I’m off and running, and I’m not turning back.
Philippians 3:12-14 MSG
(The sermon isn’t up on the church website yet. I will link to it when it is in case you want to listen!)