Are you struggling to imitate Christ?
- Do you feel like every day is a struggle in one form or another?
- Are you struggling daily in your walk of faith?
- Are there days when you find yourself completely unable to “deny yourself and take up your cross”?
- Are there times when you think you are never going to get the hang of keeping God first and foremost in your life?
- Are there days when you just want to throw in the towel and forget all about it?
- Have you ever wished that you had never heard the “Good News” and could just go on with your life without worrying if your name is written in The Book of Life?
If you said yes to one or more of those questions, then you are in good company. I know, sometimes it hardly seems like it; but you are. You know how I know? Jesus said so!
He also said,“Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few.” –Matthew 7:13-14(ESV)
“Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” –Matthew 11:28-30 (ESV)
Now I don’t know about you, but I can relate more to that first saying than I can that second one. For some reason, my soul is still longing for that rest; and I have yet to discover the yoke that is easy and the burden that is light. But you know what? I’m OK with that — most of the time. Really!
My wife might tell you otherwise. She’d probably describe me as always fussing about what a seemingly endless struggle it is to “let go and let God” be the ruler of my heart. But from everything I’ve read – and that includes the Bible — if I’m not concerned about my relationship with God, I am a walking dead man! The more concerned I am about the “strongholds” in my life that I’m struggling to let go of, the more I know He is in my heart and in my mind. And the more He is in my heart, the less of me there is to mess things up! I celebrate that! And do you know why? Because there was a time in my life that I could have cared less!
Today, even though I still behave like a willful, undisciplined child at some point each day; today I am aware of that fact and it matters to me. Today, I care. I care because it affects my relationship with my Heavenly Father — and I want that relationship to be a good relationship, a healthy relationship, and a strong relationship. And I thank God for the blessing of His Son covering the debt I could have never paid. I thank Jesus for pleading His case before ‘Our Father’ on my behalf. And I thank God for pouring out His Spirit of Holiness, so that I might know the Great Mystery that is salvation by faith in Christ alone, to those whom God has chosen to call His children.
Whether I walk in the Spirit and am counted among the sheep, or if I walk by the flesh and am counted among the goats, I have been granted the privilege and the wisdom to know the TRUTH! I have been given an invitation to spend eternity in paradise with the Creator of all good things, and for that, I am eternally grateful.
I am grateful that my salvation is a gift from God. I am grateful that each day is a struggle for me to choose that which is good, and pure, and right, and holy. For without that struggle, I would be ignorant of my need for God. Without that daily struggle, I would have no reason to live. Today, I have a reason to live. Today, I have a reason to struggle. Today, I have the presence of God in my life. Hallelujah! \o/