“I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” Galatians 2:20………….
“I was surprised to hear you would make that decision knowing what you knew,” a sweet friend essentially told me one day.
I am pretty sure she didn’t much approve of the decision I made. Not in the least. Especially considering the decision concerned something she cared deeply about. To say the least. But then, I cared so very deeply about this something also. Perhaps even much more than she did. But there we both were. Realizing the consequences of my decision, and talking about it, and discussing the ramifications with the understanding there were perhaps even more ramifications to come. None of this was easy. Easy would have been an understatement. I had made one of the most difficult decisions I had ever made. And I hadn’t just made the decision. I had followed through with it.
Perhaps you wonder what the message is in this for you. Please read on, my friend. What I explained to my sweet friend bears the message in its entirety.
“I made the decision for the Lord,” I effectively explained. “I would never have made that decision myself. It’s not what I would have wanted to do,” I essentially continued. “I made it because of my love for the Lord, and in obedience to Him. He wants me to trust Him entirely.”
And there it was. Explained for her. And here it is. Explained for you. When I received Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior, as Lord of my life and as Savior who died on the cross for me and was raised from the dead so I could be saved from my sins and God’s wrath and punishment and forgiven and given everlasting life once I repented and placed my faith in Christ as Lord, Christ not only became my personal Savior with whom I now have a blessedly everlasting relationship rather than a future in hell and the lake of fire in fiery torment forever apart from God. But He is my LORD. My life is no longer mine. It is not longer the world’s. It is not longer the devil’s. My life is Christ’s. And I live for Him. And when I make a decision, I am not to make the decision for my own selfish ends and pleasures. I am to make decisions in submission to my Lord, Christ.
When my life on this earth comes to an end, I daresay the decision I made at that time will still most likely be one of the hardest I have ever made. I feel I could cry forever it was that indescribably hard. But what once was a love purely for myself, and a life lived purely for me, in submission to this world’s ways and the devil, is now a love for Christ above all else, a life lived wholly for Him. And despite the awfulness of the pain of denying the flesh and what the flesh craves for Christ’s sake, there is simply nothing in the entire world as wonderful and as beautiful and as forever as being loved by Jesus, loving Jesus intimately and ever more, of pleasing my Lord and master, of honoring my Father in heaven, of living my every breath as best I am able for the glory of God almighty, Creator of the universe, King of Kings, Lord of Lords, the One who will reign forevermore!
I could have made a decision to please myself. And I could have made a decision to please my friend. I made a decision to please my Lord instead. To Him be all glory amen!
Are you facing a decision, dear one? When you consider your choices, what fills your heart? Love for yourself and for what you desire? Will you deny yourself and live instead for Christ? Will you make a decision for Him? Are you willing to sacrifice your own wishes, wants, and ways, for the cause and sake and glory of the Lord? Oh, what a reward you will receive! The reward of pleasing Jesus! The reward of living for God! The reward of bringing Him joy and pleasure! The reward of laying down your own life for Christ’s sake! Decide for Christ, my friend! And trust God to carry you through……..!