With the thoughts of those that were willing to give their lives I couldn’t help but think about all the Scriptural mandates that we too should be “sacrificial” in our approach to life. Throughout “The Playbook” we are told to die to self and live for Him. We are reminded of the ultimate sacrifice in that He gave His life for us; so out of gratitude we should in turn give our lives for Him. And the reality is that if I preach those thoughts I would receive a lot of “Amens” and professing believers will almost always claim that is true in their lives.
But I want to challenge each of you (and myself) to truly examine our lives and see if that is true of us…
I will focus on one part of one verse that jumped off the page to me today: Galatians 2:20 “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.”
If that verse is true in our lives then there should be some very specific evidence… we should be living and looking like Christ. Did you see the progression of death to self (crucified) on to trusting Christ to use you?
We often think that death to self is characterized just by the things we avoid. In other words the idea that if I “don’t drink, smoke, cuss, or chew (or go with girls who do)” then I am accomplishing the goals. That is like a player bragging to me, “Hey Coach, I didn’t turn the ball over or miss any shots today!” Sounds good without the context that the said player never got off the bench…
We are to die to self so He can LIVE in and through us! When I think about the life of Christ I don’t marvel at the things He didn’t do (even though being without sin was a pretty huge deal that qualified Him to be my Savior); instead I reflect on how He treated others; how He served others; how He loved others (especially the unlovable); how He interacted with the down and out; how He met needs; etc.
If Christ is living in us then we should be living/acting like Him! I’m not asking you if you have any turnovers or missed shots… I’m asking you if you are even in the game trying to Make A Difference in the lives of others? Are you willing to sacrifice your selfish desires to meet the needs of others?