Thursday, November 17, 2011

MrsDrPoe: "To Live is Christ"

Good morning to you all, and welcome to Theology Thursday on the blog!  As I do every week, I invite you to open your Bibles with me as we look at portion of God's word.

During this month's elections, I heard someone say, "I hate when people let religion get in the way of politics!"  I found this statement to be particularly ironic since this person would identify herself as a Christian.  This got me to thinking about how we often try to compartmentalize our lives, dividing our focus much like this pie graph:

We spend, say, 33.3% of our time at work or school, 22.2% of our time sleeping, 22.2% of our time with family, 11.1% of our time doing chores or running errands, and 11.1% serving God.  While this seems like a nice, neat way to organize our lives, we are missing the point of being a Christian.

In Philippians 1:21, Paul says, "For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain."  He goes on to explain his statement in the following verses: "But if I live on in the flesh, this will mean fruit from my labor; yet what I shall choose I cannot tell.  For I am hard-pressed between the two, having a desire to depart and be with Christ, which is far better.  Nevertheless to remain in the flesh is more needful for you."  Thus, through death, Paul would "gain" by being able to be with Christ, and continuing in this life is "Christ" as he would spend his time teaching others about Him and continuing to pattern his actions as after the Lord's.

As we "imitate [Paul] as [he] also imitates Christ," (1 Cor 11:1), we too must strive to make living Christ in our lives.  Our focus pie chart should look more like this:

Not that our service to God has been removed, but that it's like a third dimension, permeating every aspect of our lives.  That means that when we're at work/school our actions reflect our Lord- we help others, we don't gossip, we don't lie or cheat, etc.  When we're with our family, running errands, or doing chores, we again make choices that would be pleasing to God- curbing our anger at 'stupid drivers,' examining the media we listen to/watch/read, etc.  Of course, in order to implement this lifestyle, we must know what is pleasing to Him- knowledge that we gain through intensive Bible study and fervent prayer, attempting to conform our will to His.

"To live is Christ," and we should strive to point to Him in every action we take and decision we make- even political ones.


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